hypothetical question: pre-maturation

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hypothetical question: pre-maturation

Postby i.m.mcaber » Tue May 27, 2003 6:42 pm

I know Scotch must stay in cask for a least 3 years. I know also that casks can be reused and sometimes are being charred to "open" the surface for better maturation.

Now my burning question...
What if you shred old casks into grainsize peaces and toast it. Then you let the new spirit drain through this granulate, before it is collected in the spirit reciever.

Ofcourse then you will have to mature this spirit into whisky in at least three years.

What will the result be? A very well matured young whisky? or perhaps a illegal made whisky? or a whisky with pre-maturation in stead of finishing? Or an incredible wrong whisky perhaps?

This question is not to offend people and their opinion, but only to look in a different way to whisky and satisfy my endless curiosity.

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Postby Admiral » Wed May 28, 2003 3:00 am

You have almost described the exact process that defines Tennessee whiskey. Tennessee whiskey (as opposed to bourbon) is effectively "charcoal" filtered in a manner similar to what you described.

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Postby i.m.mcaber » Wed May 28, 2003 4:37 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Arial, Verdana">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Admiral:
) is effectively "charcoal" filtered in a manner similar to what you described. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Okay sounds logical, but what I meant was not how to clear impurities from the whisky with charcoal of maple wood or whatever, but toasted wood from casks to add extra flavour of the wood.

Anyway, I still have the question, what will happen to the very whisky. Can it be sold under the name Scotch. Or maybe the question should be... is it done in Scotland?

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Postby old rarity » Wed May 28, 2003 11:15 pm

All good questions but Admiral's point is still valid because wood (cask) aging, no less than charcoal filtration, removes impurities. The congeners are oxidised by long storage in barrels. They are likewise removed or neutralised by charcoal filtration... I think people used oak chips for a time to accelerate whisky aging, but the results did not work, or were not felt satisfactory. Oak chips are still added, to white wine, to increase the woody taste, so the idea, which is intuitive and makes sense to a point, has not completely died..

[This message has been edited by old rarity (edited 28 May 2003).]

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