Adding Bourbon to Beer: Creative Infusion

The taste of bourbon is second to none. It is the most intriguing dimension of flavor you will find in the world of liquor. Making it a fine choice to drink.

Sometimes the high alcohol content of bourbon may not be ideal for you to consume on the weekends. But you can infuse bourbon into your beer.

So, what’s the process of adding bourbon to beer?

You can add the flavor of bourbon to beer by infusing your beer brew. By adding bourbon-soaked oakwood cubes into your beer brew, To be precise. Within a measured period of time, you can enjoy a bourbon-infused beer happily.

A more in-depth discussion about the whole process will help you to make this magical brew by yourself.

So without further delay, let’s dive into the details.

How to Add Bourbon Flavor to Beer

Beer in general is a very mild yet tasteful alcoholic drink. You can use beer in almost all kinds and forms or mixtures. This flexibility makes adding liquor to beer very easy. 

You can infuse the flavor of a strong liquor with beer, giving it a new depth in taste.

In that way, you can add bourbon to beer and give it a new dimension of flavor. Infusing bourbon into a beer does not mean adding bourbon to the beer recipe

Rather, it’s a delicate process in which you have to infuse oakwood soaked in bourbon. 

Source: masterclass.com

These oakwoods are given long periods of time. This is to properly release the sweet flavor of bourbon and wood into the beer. Making it a better drink. For this, you will need to know the process and selection of oakwood.

What Kind of Oak Can You Use?

There are various types of oak wood you can choose to use. But in the case of bourbon making, there are three types of oakwood that are used. These are:

  • American Oak 
  • Hungarian Oak 
  • French oak 

These are the three most common varieties. And vital in the bourbon-making process. The oak wood gives the bourbon brew its distinct flavor character. This is why they are the perfect wood for your bourbon-infused beer.

The mildest flavor, with traces of vanilla, comes from the French. But the American oak gives out the greatest oak flavor. Hungarians tend to be in the center of the pack. I also help you when the question of brewing is can you add whiskey to beer?  

Oak usually comes in a variety of toast degrees. The flavor of dark toasted oak is more carbonized or caramelized. Whereas the flavor of lightly toasted or untoasted oak is much milder. 

You have to utilize oak cubes that have been slowly roasted in the same way that barrels have been toasted. Then do the process of adding bourbon oak to beer.

When doing the making process, we recommend avoiding oak chips and sawdust. They impart flavor faster. But they are all roasted to the same level, resulting in fewer nuanced flavors and smells. 

Source: morebeer.com

Like barrels, good-quality oak cubes are cut from staves. It has been toasted on one side, allowing the beer to come into touch with different toast degrees. Now let’s go through the process of infusion.

Process of Infusing

Before starting the infusion process, you will need some additional stuff along with your oakwood cubes and bourbon. These will be,

After gathering all the parts and tools needed, let’s get into the details. This is a time-consuming process. But to get the perfect infusion, you will need to have patience.

Step 1: Soaking the Oak Cubes

First, you will need to soak the medium toast oak cubes in bourbon using a RAJTAN spice jar. This will provide the bourbon barrel-aged flavor you seek in the beers. 

Fill to the brim with bourbon and seal after adding the oak. Allow the oak to sit for about a month to absorb the bourbon flavors.

Step 2: Add the Cubes into the Beer

After the beer has finished fermenting, you’ll have to do a task. That is adding bourbon-soaked oak chips to beer to the brewing tank. A 5-gallon glass brewing tank in our instance. You don’t need to use bourbon. 

Allow the beer to sit on the wood for 3-4 weeks at room temperature before kegging or bottling. 

Step 3: Removing the Oak Cubes

After the infusing process is done, remove the oak cubes. Normally you don’t need to use any finings in the brewing tank. The beer will clarify on its own due to the extended steep period.

If you will need to bypass the brewing tank and go straight to the keg. You have to siphon it out. Be careful with this process as sometimes auto siphoning might not work. 

You can put it on a stainless steel dry hopper hung in the keg. This will be a good option. Here are some of our recommended dry hoppers available in the market.

These stainless steel dry hoppers are of the best quality. You can use them for a long period of time.

Just tie a piece of unflavored/unwaxed dental floss to the top. After you have removed the dry hopper after the proper level of oak is reached.

Source: thedailybeast.com

And that is how you do the process of adding bourbon to homebrew beer!

Try Experimenting with the Flavor Infusion

Experimenting with different types of wood and toast levels is a good process. It’s how you can also answer what alcohol to add to root beer? This helps you to develop and master your skills as a brewer. 

While oak flavors decrease with time, they never entirely disappear. So when using oak for the first time, sample the beer frequently to ensure you don’t over-oak. Make sure about it by taking an ABV test of the brew.

Is it the slight toasted oak/bourbon flavor already stepped for one month? If it’s stepped on bourbon-soaked then oak cubes are similar to what you’d get from barrel aging.

But without the hassles of barrel maintenance. The wood complements the rich dark chocolate, coffee, and plum/raisin/prune flavors beautifully. You can also try adding whiskey to beer. Not only that, mixing cranberries to your beer can also be an interesting deal!

Oaked beers are frequently those that will age and alter over time and hold well for many years. They gradually blend together and fade away with time.

If you bottle, save a few bottles and sample one per year for the next decade or more.

That is all there is to discuss this subject.

FAQs

Can You Add Oak Chips During Fermentation?

There is no harm in using oak chips during fermentation. But if you want to use it in that method, then you will need to make sure that you are adding the oak chips at the perfect concentration of alcohol brew.

Does Moonshine Improve with Age?

Moonshine’s flavor improves as it ages. Flavored spirits can be consumed the same day they are distilled. But many distillers recommend letting the spirit sit inside the bottle. Storing the moonshine for a month or longer in a dark spot to improve its flavor.

Can Bourbon be Flavored?

No flavor enhancers or color additions are allowed in bourbon by law. The overall flavor profile of bourbon may be described as having strong vanilla, oak, and caramel overtones. As a result, it’s ideal for combining cocktails along with sipping alone or on the rocks.

Conclusion

The whole process explanation should give you a good answer on adding bourbon to beer

In the end, it’s a simple process of calculated and measured steps.

Remember to measure and time out every part of the process. That way you’ll have the perfect beer to spend the weekends on.

Happy brewing!

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