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Thread: Bourbon Barrel syrup verses bourbon infused maple syrup and taste

  1. #1
    Haynes Forest Products Guest

    Default Bourbon Barrel syrup verses bourbon infused maple syrup and taste

    Not wanting to hijack the discussion an Leaking barrels I thought I would start this thread.

    As GeneralStark stated WHO is to say what REAL bourbon barrel syrup should taste and look like? I have tried a few and really cant tell you if they tasted the same or one was better than the other. I love Cherry pie and make my own from being taught from my sister who made a pie a day for weeks on end as practice for a baking contest back in the 60's. She is no expert on how a Cherry pie should taste BUT she sure makes a great pie. Have you ever gotten a REAL Cherry pie from the store that was a gelatinous mess of red crud that had some resemblance of cough syrup. BLA BLA BLA Chuck get to the point........NO not till I make my point my way.

    Take wine for instance I will be asked to pick up wine for dinner or what ever and I'm as dumb as they come when it comes to that task. I look like the lady walking the electric isle of Home Depot with a shopping list from their husbands. So you want a white wine but not a Chardonny and nothing from the east coast..................

    Now it won't be long before someone dreams up a Fancy Smancy regulatory board that they get certified to be the final judge on what Bourbon barrel syrup should taste like. Or is it Bourbon barrel infused syrup? Wait did you age it or infuse it?? Ah Ah Ah not so fast there Billy how old was that barrel and you say you had some leakage..........................That won't fly around here.

    I took some American Oak Infusion spirals the heavy ones. The ones that they use to infuse a 60 gallon drum and soaked them is some cheap Bourbon for 9 months. They recommend 6 weeks to fully absorb the wine.........Wait did you say wine YUP just playing around with what this beer maker gave me.

    So this year as I was bottling up some personal bottles I cut the spirals into 2" long pieces from the Ziploc bags and put in pint mason jars and let them evaporate off any visible liquid and hot packed them.

    I waited about 10 days and opened one and passed it around and Most people thought it was great others said whats the point? I sond a few without much explanation only that it had a Bourbon taste. Now let me very clear I have know idea how I would present the finished product because it wasn't aged. Wait I aged it 10 days that should count.............right. Now it wasn't bourbon barrel aged but it was infuse with bourbon from a new uncharred oak Spiral soaked in Bourbon. They were dry so I didnt add the Bourbon. So this is as clear as mud when it comes to what it should be as a finished product. I don't drink Spirits so I couldn't tell you what good or bad Bourbon should taste like I just know that all my friends.........OK 2 people I know think its good and that's a dang good track record that's like 100% satisfaction.

    Because I started this thread I get to agree with GeneralStark that Does anybody really have the right to decide what the taste should be? I will add this little disclaimer about my intentions...........................I HAVE NONE just playing around for my own amusement and its working.
    Last edited by Haynes Forest Products; 08-16-2018 at 03:35 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Bourbon Barrel syrup verses bourbon infused maple syrup and taste

    I base my aging time to the flavor that I like. Im not selling it as ;pure maple syrup so off flavors don;t mean anything as it is a specialty product. Its like apple pie in a contest where I use maple sugar instead of white sugar. It gives me an edge on the competition hoping that others will have the same taste buds.


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  3. #3
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    In New York State I believe you need a license to add bourbon to syrup (infused). To age the syrup in an empty barrel that once held bourbon you need no license.
    I don't know about regulations in other states or provinces.
    Last edited by maple flats; 08-17-2018 at 01:57 PM.
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  4. #4
    Haynes Forest Products Guest

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    Dave that's a tough one to figure out. I don't know if you can really know what I did. Yes I infused flavor into the oak spiral and then used it to transfer the flavor into the syrup at the time of hot packing. Now if you used the infusion spirals to infuse the flavor with residual Bourbon into the syrup and then boiled to temps evaporating any trace amounts of Bourbon off leaving only flavor/taste and then hot pack. DID you adulterate the syrup?

    In reality we adulterate syrup with DE before we remove it during the filtering process so couldn't it be said were doing the same thing with the bourbon?

  5. #5
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    I think you are splitting hairs that New York State does not do.
    Dave Klish about 1320 taps in '15, doing fewer each year, about 450 planned for 2020 (and after?)
    2012 Mahindra 36 HP 4x4/ loader/cab/heat/AC:-)
    added a gooseneck equipment trailer and F350 to tow it to haul more sap
    3x8 raised flue evaporator
    250 GPH converted to electric, RO by Ray Gingerich
    6.32 KW solar system, 1.48KW is battery backed up, all net metered
    http://s1041.photobucket.com/albums/...anssugarhouse/
    website: www.cnymaple.com

  6. #6
    Haynes Forest Products Guest

    Default

    I was only responding to the post about adding bourbon to syrup. I don't know what constitutes adding.

  7. #7
    Haynes Forest Products Guest

    Default

    OK I know I"m talking with myself but the more I hear from other producers that do barrel aged syrup. So lets say I get a call from my favorite supplier that they have some newly emptied barrels. I hit the road and have them back to the shack and ready to hot pack in less than 24 Hr's. I drain my SS drum into the finisher/reheater and into the barrel it goes. Now I didn't check the barrels interior because the supplier told me that as soon as the barrel was drained they returned the bung back in ASAP to keep it fresh and hydrated.

    Now could I be guilty of adulterating the syrup? If I did and after I age, heat to 185 degrees, filter and bottle is the liquid that I adulterated it with still in the syrup. If so is it detectable and could the people that regulate Bourbon barrel syrup have an issue with it. OH WAIT is there a regulatory agency that regulates the manufacture of Bourbon barrel aged maple syrup? What are the set standards and could the state show up at my shack and confiscate my barrels because I'm not following some obscure reading of some unknown rule that says if you do this or that your in violation of rule No. 1234 sub section, 3 paragraph 9 thru 19 because the moisture content of the drum was not checked and verified by the ATF.

  8. #8
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    From my understanding of things. Aging syrup in used bourbon barrels is just a slow infusion of bourbon into the syrup. The alcohol in the bourbon is what extracts the flavors out of the oak and the char (carbon) filters out some of the harsher tasting compounds. When you put syrup in a used barrel is slowly leaches out the bourbon to flavor it. If syrup would extract the vanilla and caramel flavors out of the oak you could just use a new barrel but these flavors already exist in syrup so what would be the point.
    As far as regulatory, a barrel is probably seen as a storage vessel while adding bourbon or spirals, chips etc are seen as adding something. Now I know they all do the exact same thing but regulation do not always make the most sense. In Wisconsin if you combine any 2 things you need a food processors license. If you allowed the adding of bourbon to infuse how do you stop the next guy that wants to combine 2 other things. I would assume that New York and maybe other state look at aging in a barrel is just using a storage vessel and not adding to it. These are just my opinions and out there for discussion and there could very well be some things I may be missing.
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  9. #9
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    As long as you don't add bourbon to it (other than the small residual amount left in the barrel) there is no concerns with ATF. However any syrup aged in a barrel or with infused flavor is no longer considered "Pure Maple Syrup" due to it having an off-flavor (which was intentionally added, but would not be found in syrup naturally) and should not be labelled as such.

    As always, there may be specific laws/regulations that are different in other jurisdictions.
    Last edited by DrTimPerkins; 08-18-2018 at 10:03 AM.
    Dr. Tim Perkins
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  10. #10
    Haynes Forest Products Guest

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    Dang it Doc why do you make it sound so simple. Can you use the words "Made using pure maple syrup" ?

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