New barrel questions

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JBP

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I am nervously starting the barrel journey with a fresh-dumped, 5 gal barrel from Midwest. Plenty of wine waiting to rotate through and top off, but nervous about ruining good wine instead of making it better. I still have a couple of first timer questions after reading as much as I can find. In addition to rehydrating/swelling the barrel (moreWine! instructions), do I need to clean it and/or sanitize it before filling? Sanitizing - assume I would use this method? Cleaning - now or between wines - since I live in MN, outdoor house is not an option right now. I have a bathtub and a utility sink, but no barrel washer wand (and not sure i am ready for $199 for that). Any recommendations on technique for a small, indoor barrel? Any other "jump in and get started" recommendations for me?
 
I use a pressure washer to clean the barrel between uses. I have 90 degree and 120 degree extensions so I can get all areas except just inside the bung hole. Spray it as best you can this time.

Definitely soak the barrel. If it's fresh dumped it shouldn't leak, but the wood may have dried out some.

I use Barrel Oxyfresh between wines and when getting a new (to me) barrel. There are other cleaners you could try, but I have no experience with them. After rinsing the barrel, add K-meta solution, swirl it around, and dump it. Then fill the barrel.
 
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Thanks, Bryan - love the clear directions. Looks like I am unable to get Barrel Oxyfresh in anything less than 50 pounds at this time (except for one place that charges >$50 for one pound when shipping is added). If anyone has a better source, please let me know!
 
I used Barrel Oxyfreash on my first two barrels from Midwest, then I read the instructions from Midwest. They say just to refill the freshly dumped whisky barrels with whatever you are aging. I did that with my newest barrels.

I filled them with water to check for leaks, let them sit overnight, drained and filled with wine. I hope the whisky killed any microbes.
 
Thanks, Bryan - love the clear directions. Looks like I am unable to get Barrel Oxyfresh in anything less than 50 pounds at this time (except for one place that charges >$50 for one pound when shipping is added). If anyone has a better source, please let me know!
I buy from my LHBS, American Brewmaster in Raleigh. I have no idea what he charges for S&H.

OTOH @VinesnBines' advice is good. You're probably ok now, although I'd clean the barrel between uses.
 
Check for Barrel Oxyfresh with some LHBS or local wineries. The wineries may be using it/ or not. I found some at a wine (LHBS) but I had to ask the owner if he carried it. I think he sold me a pound from his own stock.
 
I used Barrel Oxyfreash on my first two barrels from Midwest, then I read the instructions from Midwest. They say just to refill the freshly dumped whisky barrels with whatever you are aging. I did that with my newest barrels.

I filled them with water to check for leaks, let them sit overnight, drained and filled with wine. I hope the whisky killed any microbes.
I did the same and so far no problems
 

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