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FAQ

How long is your turnaround on whiskey barrels?

We typically have a hundred or so or each size barrel in stock, which can be sent out within 48 hours

How is your wood sourced?

All of our wood is sustainably and responsibly sourced in the US and FSC certified. Most of our American White Oak is from Northern Missouri while a portion is sourced right here in Minnesota. As one of the leading cooperates in the US, our company has its roots in the lumber business (over 100 years of experience) so you can rest assured that your barrels delivery quality, consistency and repeatability in every batch.

How are The Barrel Mill’s Whiskey Barrels made?

We select the finest American White Oak from the highest-quality stave produced in the US – using thicker staves to reduce evaporation loss and increase the quality of the barrel. Each stave is air-dried up to two years, individually molded, traditionally fired bent, toasted and charred to your specifications. We used galvanized steel hoops that are custom made in house. Our heads are put together with tongue and groove joints, charred and sealed with local, organic beeswax. In short, we cooper each barrel with care.

How are the whiskey barrels tested?

Upon completion, each barrel is hand stress-tested with high temperature, pressurized filtered water to ensure there are no leaks. From the first stave to the final assembly, The Barrel Mill’s commitment to quality has no equal.

Why smaller whiskey barrels?

Smaller barrels can mean bigger ROIs due to increased amount of the spirit coming in contact with the barrel. Our smaller Premium White Oak barrels can help you get your product to market faster without sacrificing quality. We currently offer, 5 gal, 10 gal, 15 gal and 30 gal barrels.

What if my barrel leaks?

Well, straight up – it shouldn’t because we test each and every one. That said, if your barrel sits too long unfilled it can become dehydrated and will need to be swelled with water. Before you fill, follow the barrel care instructions that were sent with your barrel. No leaks should occur if you follow these instructions.

Infusion Spiral® Questions

Are Oak Infusion Spirals proven for whiskey making?

Very much so. Not only has the design been around for years, it’s been used by many top distilleries (many of which have won the industry’s highest honors) and ETS Labs in California has tested the specific toast and char levels.

Why are spirals used with barrels?

Because new Oak barrels are scarce. Old barrels can be enhanced by using The Infusion Spiral in a through-bung insertion. Many customers also use the spirals with new barrels to get product to market faster.

Can spirals be used in tank systems?

Of course! They are ideal for imparting Oak attributes in whiskey in either stainless steel or plastic tanks. Our customers have used spirals in these applications with great success.(accolades page)

How do we come up with our dosage recommendations?

Following the dose recommendations on the label will get you roughly the same Oak color, flavor, and aroma in 6 weeks as you would 8 months in a 53 gallon charred Oak barrel. It is easy to over-oak, so please follow the label instructions – you can always add more later.

How is the flavor extracted so much faster as compared to barrels and other Oak alternatives?

Liquids penetrate wood eight times faster when exposed to the end grain of the wood versus the side grain, like barrels and other Oak alternatives.

How are the Infusion Spirals® toasted?

We use state of the art convection ovens for consistency and uniformity. Temperature and length of toasting are kept track of to ensure consistency in every batch.

How are the Infusion Spirals® charred?

Our charred spiral is a product of our custom, conveyor charring machine that uniformly chars the spiral and immediately extinguishes the flame and ensures consistency.

What are the most popular products?

Our top sellers are American medium (most like #3 standard alligator), American Char #3 similar to the medium toast but adds more color and roasted characteristics.

How long does it take to get the Oak Spirals?

Our products are shipped from stock, packaged in sealed plastic bags for freshness, and usually arrive in four business days by ground transport from our Minnesota facility.

Can the Infusion Spiral® be reused?

No, after six weeks all Oak flavor is extracted. Do talk to your local craft brewery though as many are now seeking used spirals for creating uniquely flavored brews.

Can I make a bourbon with spirals only?

No, charred oak barrels are required for bourbons. Please check with TTB labeling guidelines. Many distilleries are making bourbon-like products with specialty applications.

How many tank packs should I use in my tank?

One tank package per 270 gallons of spirit.

How many 8-inch spirals for should I put in my carboy?

Two 8” spirals are recommended per six gallons of spirits.

How do I connect the spiral pack to the bung?

We suggest using a stainless steel eyelet that is screwed into the bottom of your normal bung and using the included food-grade zip-tie to connect the end of the mesh bag to the eyelet. Another option is to use about three feet of fishing line (20-30 lbs. strength) to tie to one end of the mesh and staple to the other end on the outside of the barrel, next to the bung hole.

Are free samples of the Infusion Spiral® available?

Yes, if you are a commercial distillery. Please contact us to start a trial. All we ask for is a sample of your results.