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A barrel refers to a hollow cylindrically shaped container that is made of wooden board for storing drinks. The shape size and design of the barrels depend on the type of liquid stored in them. a barrel maker or cooper is a professional who focuses on making barrels. The following are the types of barrels, but are not limited to; cooperage, pipe, pins, butter churns, buckets, firkins, tierces, puncheons, breakers, among others. Ever since their discovery, barrels have been used for various purposes , including storing liquids such as sake, water , and beverages such as beer, wine, port, whiskey, as well as sherry. Other than storing liquids such as water and oils, barrels are also used for maturing of beverages.
There is a huge difference in taste between whisky that has been store in a barrel and that that is served immediately after processing, the one in a barrel is tastier since the barrels assist in ageing the drink hence improving its taste. During the aging process, oxygen is added into the barrels then the excess ones are released. Besides, wooden barrels are preferred to other types of barrels in making of whisky since some compounds in the barrel are added in the whisky, however the availability of the compounds are subject to factors such as the magnitudes and number of times the barrels have been toasted, the ways in which the stave are cut as well as the place of origin of the barrels. Most countries require whiskey manufactures to process age the drinks in wooden barrels. Other requirements vary with nationality include whisky to be stored for at least two years in new wooden containers. Besides, international laws require whisky makers of the label Scotch to be distilled in Scotland and left to mature for at least three years.
Companies that prepares whisky can choose the following types of casks for maturing scotch whisky, these include hogshead, barrel butt, puncheon, barrique, quarter cask, port pipe, Madeira drum, among others. Wooden barrels plays a vital role in the aging of whisky since they transfer certain aromas into the spirit. Besides, wooden barrels can be used to age the following drinks including balsamic vinegar, tequila, beers, as well as soft drinks.
The following are the essential tips to whisky aging. One of the essential factors to consider is the temperature of the barrels, for good taste, the temperature need to be constant throughout till the aging process is completed.
Besides, one need to pay attention to the level of wine in the barrels especially when working with new barrels since new ones tend absorbing more whine in the beginning of aging process than the older barrels. Moreover, whisky processing companies need to ensure that their barrels are raked after every three years.
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