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Homemade whiskey infused wood chips for smoking.

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    Homemade whiskey infused wood chips for smoking.

    Hi gang. I'm sure everyone's seen the Jack Daniels Sour Mash Whiskey wood chips made from old ageing barrels.
    I was reviewing some bourbon grilling/smoking recipes. This got me thinking what about bourbon whiskey wood chips from barrels. None could be located for sale.

    I saw a review comment on a product (Whiskey chips from Spain) where the individual said better than wasting a dram to make whiskey chips for smoking. the product does not mention what type of whiskey barrels were used. The wood chips are from Spain. Scotch, Sour Mash, Bourbon? Who Knows.

    So if I wanted for example to make some Jim Beam bourbon flavored wood chips to go with say Jim Beam's BBQ sauce for a grill/smoke, what would a good reliable recipe be?
    For example.
    X amount liquor to Y amount water, to Z grams of wood chips. Leave to soak ___ minutes.

    Thanks for the creative input on this idea.

    #2
    It would be a waste of whisky. You can't taste the difference. Drink the whisky while smoking the meat.

    Comment


    • efincoop
      efincoop commented
      Editing a comment
      Can't speak from experience, but as Dewesq55 mentions below, Jeremy Yoder (aka Mad Scientist BBQ) did a side by side comparison cooking brisket with bourbon barrel staves and found no difference, Maybe the results with salmon would be different. I am not going to tell you otherwise, especially if you taste the difference.

    • texastweeter
      texastweeter commented
      Editing a comment
      lostclusters neither me nor anyone I served (20 ppl plus my family of 6) could tell between 2 briskets I cooked, one with oak, the other with bourbon barrel staves. Maybe it's different on Salmon.

    • texastweeter
      texastweeter commented
      Editing a comment
      I have always used alder for salmon.

    #3
    I’m sure whiskey barrel chips or chunks add a nice oak flavor when smoking, but I would not think it would be worth making yourself. I’ve never used them but I’d imagine the flavor is mostly just oak and any additional whiskey flavor would result from the barrel being full of whiskey for years, so it would be hard and take a lot of whiskey to replicate.

    Comment


    • jab688
      jab688 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks Red Man my thoughts exactly. But thought I'd reach out and tap the knowledge pool.

    #4
    Yeah, don't waste the whiskey. If you want to try it, get some chips. I've found you don't get much bang on a long cook. For steaks on an open flame, whiskey or brandy barrels can be an influence, but it isn't there in a long cook

    Comment


      #5
      Jeremy Yoder has a video on YouTube where he did a side by side comparison of bourbon barrel wood and regular oak. He said there was no difference.

      Comment


        #6
        Just buy the commercially available chips, it's not worth the trouble to make your own. Jack Daniel's is excellent.

        Comment


          #7
          I've never been able to tell any meaningful difference in flavor from treated vs. untreated chips. Both at home and on the job. Don't always believe all the hype. It's far better to experiment with different woods to achieve your house flavors. Trust uncle Strat on this....

          Comment


            #8
            Or make a sauce?

            Comment


              #9
              Thanks everyone, I agree with all the comments so far. But thought I'd reach out and tap the knowledge pool.

              Comment


                #10
                Walmart up here in the GTA sells a Maple Bourbon Barrel wood chip I really like.
                Bourbon content is questionable but smoked a brisket with these two weeks ago and loved the results.

                Comment


                  #11
                  If you want whiskey flavor, you'd probably get more flavor by adding it to a mop or spritz. It's possible, I do not know, that you'd want to boil it first to get rid of the raw whiskey taste?? Just speculating here.

                  Comment


                  • Murdy
                    Murdy commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Mr. Bones -- I stopped at a local watering hole one time. Their special for the day was Jack Daniels Sloppy Joes. They must have just dumped the Jack in at the end without cooking it. Maybe there's some personal preference here, but I found the flavor quite harsh (and I am a bourbon drinker). I think cooking it takes that harsh edge off and leaves a nice bourbon flavor behind.

                  • Murdy
                    Murdy commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I stopped at a local watering hole one time. Their special for the day was Jack Daniels Sloppy Joes. They must have just dumped the Jack in at the end without cooking it. Maybe there's some personal preference here, but I found the flavor quite harsh (and I am a bourbon drinker). I think cooking it takes that harsh edge off and leaves a nice bourbon flavor behind.

                  • Mr. Bones
                    Mr. Bones commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Copy yer last, sounds like they didn't know how to cook, usin whiskey, indeed...that would be purty ugggh, jus dumpin in, after th fact. Must be a Yanqui Northern Thing lol... Learn em up, Brother!!!

                    Like any ingredient, applyin some fire, gittin carmelization of th sugar(s), Maillard Reaction? All Very Real Things, and highly developmental to flavours in any given situation.
                    Last edited by Mr. Bones; November 1, 2021, 01:56 PM.

                  #12
                  jab688 you need to be careful when looking for these. When opening the package for these, if the smell of bourbon does not hit you smack in the face, they are not the real deal. Many will try to sell you cut staves not used for bourbon aging. They were made into barrels but never used. These are just white oak wood with no bourbon flavor. Practically useless. I found and use these:

                  https://midwestbarrelco.com/collections/barrels

                  Comment


                  • Mr. Bones
                    Mr. Bones commented
                    Editing a comment
                    True Dat; I git mine from Fruita.
                    Garron Dang Tee, they're Guuuddd!!!

                  #13
                  I use whiskey staves in my Kamado. A friend of mine own a liquor company and he gets me the cuts from the whiskey and rum barrels they use. It is a nice connection to have and I love the free oak. However, I do not notice any whiskey/Rum flavor at all. It tastes amazing, but that is because its white oak, fired barrel staves, but that is where the flavor stops.

                  Then Jack Daniels Whiskey chips are a great marketing ploy. Sure they add great smoke flavor, its oak chips! But that flavor has very little to do with the Whiskey that is aged in them.

                  Also, be sure to check out this article on soaking wood chips.

                  Myth: Soak Your Wood First

                  Comment


                    #14
                    The wood chips probably wouldn't pick up enough flavor from the whiskey to replicate what you get from authentic used staves. The average barrel of whiskey is being aged for 4-6 years. So unless you plan on aging your chips for a long period of time, I don't think you'll get the results you are looking for.

                    Comment


                      #15
                      I would suggest a more impactful approach would be to use some sort of whiskey glaze or sauce at the end of your cook.

                      Comment

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