407 – More Mind Blowing Stave Science on Bourbon Aging with Andrew Wiehebrink of ISC

How much influence does the barrel have on the whiskey you drink? If you talk to a lot of people in the industry you will get a rough estimate of 70% or more flavor gets extracted from the barrel. We’ve had a few coopers on the show to talk about process, and even today’s guest was back on Episode 346. We were so amazed at some of his research we wanted him to come back on the show to talk about more mind blowing stave science. Andrew Wiehebrink is the Director of Spirits Research and Innovation for Independent Stave Company. That means he leads up all the cool advancements on where barrel trends are heading. We talk about the current barrel shortage and if toasted products are the reason to blame, where the future of oak alternatives are heading, and why there is a trend of distilleries moving tog Char 1 vs Char 4.

Show Notes:

  • Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about warming up your palate.
  • Can you give us a refreshed on how you got into whiskey?
  • How is ISC looking at the current barrel shortage crisis?
  • Is wood growth a problem in getting new barrels?
  • Is there a labor shortage in cooperages?
  • How much has toasted barrels lead to a barrel shortage?
  • Can you explain the seasoning process once again and how that effects the overall flavor?
  • Are you all experimenting with oak alternatives?
  • Why does French Oak have more peaks and valleys for the maturation process?
  • Maker’s really pioneered the custom staves but is anyone else doing anything to that level?
  • Why is there a trend of moving towards Char 1 vs Char 4?
  • Does your research show an optimal time of the year to pull barrels?
  • Is there a trend of using smoked barrels?
  • Support this podcast on Patreon

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