How To Make Your Own Whiskey, Rum, Brandy, Bourbon and Scotch
Do you enjoy the smooth, sophisticated aromas of top-shelf liquor but hesitate to pay the steep prices typically charged for these premium products in bars and liquor stores? If so, take heart: there’s a much less expensive option that will still get you the same quality you want – and you won’t even have to go out. At Red Head Barrels, you can find a small wooden barrel designed to age your favorite liquor to perfection in just a few weeks right in your own home. Not only do our white oak barrels look great on any bar, but they can also transform any cheap whiskey, tequila, or rum into deliciously aged drinks.
The Process of Aging Liquor
Enthusiasts have been aging liquor for thousands of years, understanding the difference time can make when it comes to genuinely stunning flavor. However, this result typically takes years to produce. So, how could you possibly age liquor in a wooden barrel in a matter of weeks? The answer lies in the size and quality of the wooden barrel. Our wooden liquor barrels are small enough that the surface area encounters more of the liquor inside, flavoring and aging the beverage much more quickly than larger volumes of liquor inside larger barrels. The cheapest alcohol in the liquor store takes on a whole new taste profile and level of refinement once adequately aged. The best news of all? You can accomplish this incredible transformation right in your own home.
The Science of Aging
What exactly happens during the aging process? Aging liquor merely refers to storing it in a container that brings out its smoothness and impacts its aroma. The spirit becomes more mellow and improves the taste because of the way in which it interacts with the properties of the container. In the case of charred whiskey wooden barrels, the alcohol is also aerated, contributing to a softer taste and a much more palatable final product. Traditionally, perfectly aged liquor takes years because soaking into the wood barrel and picking up its tannin and vanillin flavors is a slow process. This delicate chemical exchange can transform a harsh, pale liquor into a mellow, smooth, deliciously dark spirit.
Oak is the most popular wood used to make the classic wooden barrel that’s so effective for the aging process. Sometimes, other types of wood are used, and they impart assorted flavors. However, oak is used most commonly because of its properties. Using an oak wooden barrel repeatedly with several types of alcohol will infuse each batch with subtle essences from the previous batch for a truly unique spirit. Each Red Head Barrels wooden barrel is handcrafted right here in the States from quality American White Oak by a skilled Cooper. Each home whiskey barrel we make is a unique work of art, designed to be attractive, functional, and, most likely, quite the conversation starter anytime you have guests.
The Red Head Liquor Flavoring Kit is a prepackaged combination of our Oak Aging Barrel and our Essences Flavor used for making your own spirits. Instructions for making your own aged liquor in our oak barrels.
So, How Can Your Age Your Own Liquor at Home?
Using a wooden barrel to age liquor is easy. Our Red Head Barrels Liquor Flavoring Kit is a convenient set containing a wooden barrel and the flavor essences you need to make your own homemade whiskey. Each set comes with complete instructions on how to age and flavor your own liquor for a premium finished product producing ample enjoyment. Or, just follow the steps below.
- Step One – Cure your wooden barrel. Curing is necessary to get rid of any bacteria and eliminate any leaks.
- Step Two – Fill the barrel about halfway with a neutral-flavored spirit such as vodka or grain alcohol for bourbon, scotch, whiskey, brandy, or vodka essences. Taaka vodka is an excellent choice and costs only about $10 for a 1.75-liter bottle. If you want to use a rum essence, start with a clear, flavorless rum.
- Step Three – Pour your flavor essence into the spirit barrel. Use one bottle of flavor essence for each liter of alcohol.
- Step Four – Fill the barrel the rest of the way and place the bung in the hole on top.
- Step Five – Avoid the temptation to open the barrel for two weeks.
- Step Six – The fun part: taste your liquor. If you like the savor, it’s time to start drinking. If you don’t want the flavor to change, pour the liquor into a bottle. If you would like to age it further, leave it in the barrel for another week, then taste again. Once you have consumed all your alcohol, pay us another visit to order more essences for next time.
Good News for Wine and Beer Lovers
Aging whiskey in small barrels is fun, but it’s not the only thing you can age in your barrel. Oak barrels are ideal for aging wine, too. For thousands of years, people have stored wine in oak barrels. Waterproof when appropriately cured and able to be sealed tightly, oak is the perfect container for wine. This wood also gives the wine delicious flavors such as vanilla, caramel, and butter. Try aging wine in your oak barrel to make it more interesting and unique.
Even beer drinkers can get in on the action. Many homebrewers are taking a stab at aging their own beer. Keep in mind that beers contain less alcohol and have lighter flavors than wine or liquor, so they don’t take as long to age. Your best bets when it comes to aging beer are those with high alcohol percentages and strong flavors, such as strong ales and stouts.
Order Your Whiskey Barrel Today
Are you convinced that your own oak whiskey barrel is something you definitely need in your life? Red Head Barrels are the best around, made in America from American White Oak. Expert Coopers make our barrels to our strict specifications, resulting in the premium quality you deserve. Our barrels are attractive and stylish and make great conversation starters – not to mention that they can transform cheap liquor into a work of art. Don’t forget that you can customize our barrels and many of our accessories and gifts with your own logo, monogram, or other artwork for a one-of-a-kind product. Order your barrel today and start exploring the world of aging alcohol at home.