Barrel fermented Chardonnay in 2022?

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sour_grapes

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I’ve been in the market for quantity three, 1 or 2 year old used white wine 60 gallon barrels for our Chardonnay collective. It has been a tough order to fill, but I’m still on the hunt. If I can’t find this by June, I’ll pursue neutral white barrels and plan on adding adjuncts.

I confirmed with the vineyard the availability of 5 juice barrels (55 gallons each) of juice, so I’m pretty hopeful this will all come together.

Long shot, but do any of these float your boat? Wine Barrels
 

NorCal

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The hunt for 1,2,3 year old used white wine barrels turned up a big goose egg. We settled on recently retired, power washed, ozoned and sulfured neutral barrels. We got 3 for the group. We are committed to a whole lot of Chardonnay this year!
2223315D-8322-44AE-8279-F40761ADCE04.jpeg

I had to clean mine up a bit and make a roller for it.
143D4FE0-BBDE-48EC-9584-B12056C469F9.jpeg
 

ibglowin

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Good looking barrels IMHO. Did they have red (or white) wine in them in their previous life?

The hunt for 1,2,3 year old used white wine barrels turned up a big goose egg. We settled on recently retired, power washed, ozoned and sulfured neutral barrels. We got 3 for the group. We are committed to a whole lot of Chardonnay this year!
View attachment 88157

I had to clean mine up a bit and make a roller for it.
View attachment 88158
 

NorCal

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Good looking barrels IMHO. Did they have red (or white) wine in them in their previous life?
They had white ( Chardonnay) in them previously. I didn’t realize how much more difficult it was going to be to find used white wine barrels In my area. These barrels came out of the Sonoma area, which borders Napa.
 
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Given how few whites are barrel aged, I'm not as surprised. I can't recall seeing any advertisement for used white barrels. It's great that you got some!

Are you going to add oak adjuncts, since the barrels are neutral?
 

NorCal

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I have a feeling that the barrel aged whites in our area uses very little new oak each year and they continue to reuse old barrels and just blend the wine from the new barrels and the neutral barrels to get their "20% new oak" I'm not a big fan of oaky wines, so I'll be adding oak spirals slowly and carefully.

We also got them at a very reasonable $125 each.
 

Nebbiolo020

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They had white ( Chardonnay) in them previously. I didn’t realize how much more difficult it was going to be to find used white wine barrels In my area. These barrels came out of the Sonoma area, which borders Napa.
It’s because wineries like to keep them and continue using them even when neutral, we had about 50% neutral 50% new barrels at work and fermented all the whites in barrel. Of course that’s a lot more popular for white wines here than Napa or Sonoma, typically barrel fermenting white wines is more common with Rhone varietals, Marsanne,Roussane, Viognier, Grenache Blanc etc.
 

NorCal

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Two of the three barrels filled with aciduated and sulfited water no problem. One however was a leaker. We thought it was a swelling issue, so we tried the cold and then the hot method without success. The leak was where the barrel head intersected with the staves. It ended up being a bored hole from some sort of beetle. I took a punch, made the hole a little bigger. I then found a wooden T, sanded the sides and hammered it in then chiseled off the end. Probably not the ideal material, but it’s held. Filled up the barrel to the top and found another one. I put another golf T in it and it’s been holding for a week or so.

7A3801BC-68C9-4F75-83EE-B12529FDB493.jpeg
 

BarrelMonkey

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Two of the three barrels filled with aciduated and sulfited water no problem. One however was a leaker. We thought it was a swelling issue, so we tried the cold and then the hot method without success. The leak was where the barrel head intersected with the staves. It ended up being a bored hole from some sort of beetle. I took a punch, made the hole a little bigger. I then found a wooden T, sanded the sides and hammered it in then chiseled off the end. Probably not the ideal material, but it’s held. Filled up the barrel to the top and found another one. I put another golf T in it and it’s been holding for a week or so.

Spiles are your weapon of choice here... but a wooden golf tee sounds like an inventive and successful alternative! 👍
 

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