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What's your favorite oak additive?

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Busabill

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Hello fellow wine makers! I have a couple of different reds that are several months into this year and I am using flex tanks so I am debating which oak additive to use next for overall flavor and mouthfeel. I have used wine sticks mostly in the past but I am looking at Xoakers and using spirals now. I just racked everything (Cab Franc, Cab Sauv, Petite Syrah, Petite Verdot) so everything is basically without oak. What are your favorite oak additives these days? Spirals? Xoakers ( Has anyone used these)? Wine stix? Just curious what everyone out there likes and is using.
Thanks and cheers!
 

Johnd

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I’ve always used Wine Stix in my neutral barrels, very successfully. If I had a flex tank I was looking to oak in, I’d be looking for some larger, more substantial staves. I’m pretty sure that @stickman recently posted his source(s) for just that product. I’m certain he will chime in.
 

stickman

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Recently I've been using staves I purchased direct from evOak. Presque Isle caries the Mercier brand of staves, which I've also used; you have to call to place an order. The evOak fan pack is around 15 staves, 36” x 2.5” x 0.375”, pricing is between $60 and $80 depending on the type of oak and toasting. The staves come in different toasts as you would expect, but the method of toasting can also be selected, such as fire, infrared, convection, etc.; each toasting method yields different flavors so there are a lot of combinations to play with. You still have to experiment to find what you like, fire toast seems to be the most subtle, the convection and infrared have a stronger impact, I've been using a combination of French oak fire toast med+ and the same infrared or convection toast with good results. For 30gals 100% new oak would be around 4 staves, I've used as many as 5 staves, but that's probably a bit too high.

https://oaksolutionsgroup.com/evoak/

http://www.piwine.com/stave-french-oak-medium-toast.html
 

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