Rum in 5G barrels - side by side experiments

Finally, at long last, we've got an opportunity to start testing at scales of relevance to the industry. Although still on the small side, 5G barrels are common, and we've seen at least a couple of them in most of the distilleries we've had a chance to visit. Thanks again to our friends at Liberty Call Distilling for the white rum and for locating the barrels (#4 char - Barrel Mill).

To get started, we simply put the barrels on blocks, filled both with about 4.5G each of rum (had some spilloff on the ride home, my car was odoriferous), and slid the transmitter underneath one of them. 

With a fermentation chamber next to a couple of barrels, the garage is starting to look bragworthy. Aforementioned Single Malt Scotch Porter in the background.

With a fermentation chamber next to a couple of barrels, the garage is starting to look bragworthy. Aforementioned Single Malt Scotch Porter in the background.

Testing is going to be performed via GC-MS, and we're still debating what we want to quantify in this batch. Any point on the barrel with the Symphony can be felt to be vibrating, and the control barrel next to it makes for a pretty good comparison of environment and temperature range. GC-MS samples are all 200mL each. A comparison through 6-weeks of aging, showing only color change at this point, are below. 

1 week in 5G barrels (#4 Char) - Hertzbier on the left.

1 week in 5G barrels (#4 Char) - Hertzbier on the left.

2 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

2 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

3 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

3 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

6 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

6 weeks in 5G barrels (#4 char) - Hertzbier on the left.

At cask strength (about 125 proof), this one will wake up all of your senses.  In fact, with the #4 char it's trending somewhere between a dark rum and a whiskey. With a couple of small ice cubes and a little bit of time to let it mellow, we finally had a sipper. Time to cut it back a bit and get it in the bottle. We're going to keep taking samples for GC-MS from the control barrel so that we can begin quantifying the acceleration due to the Symphony. Keep a lookout.

Symphony aged rum (6wks), on the rocks, ironically, in a NEAT glass. 

Symphony aged rum (6wks), on the rocks, ironically, in a NEAT glass.