hist-brewing: Re: casks

Jeff Renner nerenner at umich.edu
Tue Oct 26 12:49:55 PDT 1999

Joyce Miller <msmead at doctorbeer.com> writes (and John Isenhour adds some
interesting tidbits)

>You're right about the charring, too.  The coopers did use the word
>"toasted", but then,
>I always found it hard to believe the US whiskeymakers actually *char* the
>casks, but I
>guess they do (ick).

It seems that bourbon whiskey makers actually first *toast* the barrel,
which creats the "red layer," which caramelizes the natural sugars in the
wood and adds the many vanilla, caramel, maple syrup and other magical
flavors and aromas, as well as the color to the whiskey.  They then char it
as well, which does not remove all of the effects of the prior toasting.
The char helps mellow and mature the whiskey.  (Source, _The Book of
Bourbon_, Regan and Regan, p. 221).


Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu
"One never knows, do one?"  Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. 

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