RJ Spagnols Oak Spirals

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Dugger

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I have finally got around to doing my RQ Italian Barbaresca ( in primary) and it comes with an oak spiral for the secondary. I have not used one of these before and am curious how you go about it. Do you put it in the carboy first and then rack wine in or add it after the wine is in the carboy ( you'd have to make sure there was head space). Do you try to "hang" them somehow in the carboy? Do they eventually sink or stay floating. Finally, I know it's a personal taste thing, but do most of you leave them in for a few months ( I usually bulk age for about 3-4 months before bottling)?
A lot of questions, i know, but I'd like to get an idea of how these things are usually handled.
Thanks .. Doug
 

Wade E

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I use them when I put them into aging after the wine gas cleared and use a pce of fishing line and just hang them to extract it when I feel it has enough oak in the wine. For me I fing a month is sufficient and then use it again for a lighter oaked wine, they are usually domre by then.
 

Jwatson

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I just put 2 of them into the carboy before I racked my wine into it. They stay on the bottom. Jack Keller's website mentions boiling oak for 5 minutes to sterilize and remove harsh tannins. Is this necessary? I only dip them for 10 seconds, as I feel they were pretty sterile in the sealed bag. I was wondering if you could "boil" away the oak flavor from the spirals.
 

ibglowin

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One thing about spirals is they tend to swell once they are wet so make sure you have plenty of room to remove it. If its snug when dry its going to be impossible to extract when swelled up. You will most likely have to break it up somehow with a saw blade (after you have racked off the wine of course).

Like Wade said use some fishing line to make it easier to pull out.

Soaking or boiling in water will remove tannin for sure. Most of us just toss it in w/o sterilizing never had a problem but you could spritz it with K-Meta before hand for a little extra insurance policy.

Just my $0.02 but I would not boil it. The whole point is to extract the tannin into the wine, not leave it in boiling water. Time will smooth out everything in the end.
 

EngineJoe

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Soaking or boiling in water will remove tannin for sure. Most of us just toss it in w/o sterilizing never had a problem but you could spritz it with K-Meta before hand for a little extra insurance policy.

Just my $0.02 but I would not boil it. The whole point is to extract the tannin into the wine, not leave it in boiling water. Time will smooth out everything in the end.
Just a thought: what about steaming it briefly? Wouldn't lose tannins/character to the water, but would provide 212F of heat to sterilize.
 

ibglowin

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Should work, make sure to rotate so the steam hits all sides for several minutes at least. Autoclave would be even better but you probably don't have one of those handy!

Like I said most people just toss em in and there hasn't been any issues or problems caused by a lack of sterilization.

Just a thought: what about steaming it briefly? Wouldn't lose tannins/character to the water, but would provide 212F of heat to sterilize.
 

Wild Duk

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I've got a bunch of batches aging in the carboys...If I was to add extra oak, do you normally go with the type of oak that came with the kit???
 

Wild Duk

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I've got a EP Cab Sav thats been in bulk for about a year....I was planning on bottling soon, but may now add some oak...So would i add it for about a month, then bottle.....Or should you let it sit for longer after oaking it. Maybe add it sooner in the bulk aging process??? Looks like the kit came with toasted american oak...

thx
 

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