Cask for whisky aging

Cask Size

 There are several different size cask for whisky aging. Smaller cask add flavor on whisky quicker. 

Quarter Cask 45-50L

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Barrel 190-200L

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Hogshead 225-250L

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Barrique 250-300L

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Puncheon 450-500L

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Sherry Butt 500L

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Port Pipe 550-650L

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Madeira Drum 600-650L

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Used cask

Whisky use cask which was used for various different alcohol drink aging.

Bourbon cask

 Bourbon must use new cask with burned inside for aging. So used Bourbon cask is exported for other whisky aging purpose.
 It is most popular cask for whisky aging.
 It adds crispy flavor.

Sherry cask

 Sherry cask is often use for whisky aging. 
 Actually there are several different type sherry (Pedro Ximenez, Oloroso, Moscatel, Fino, Amontillado). But most popular cask for whisky is Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez.
 It adds rich sweet flavor.

Seasoning sherry cask

 Serious shortage of sherry casks is big problem in the whiskey industry today.
 Sherry bodegas are producing sherry cask for whisky aging according to whisky distillery request today.
 This cask is called as Seasoning Cask.

Fortified Wine Cask

 Cask of other fortified wines is also used for whisky aging.
 Other fortified wine mean Port, Madeira, Marsala, VDM and VDL.

Wine Cask

 Both red & white wine cask are used for whisky aging.
 Red wine cask is normally rich taste full body one like Bordeaux, Pomerol, Barolo, Pomerol and  Amarone.
 White wine cask is also normally rich sweet taste sweet like  Sauternes.

Other Cask

 Spirits cask is also used for whisky aging. Brandy, Calvados and Rum cask are used for whisky aging. Tequila and Shochu cask are also rarely used. 
 Beer cask and coffee cask also used.

Cask Material Oak

Sessile oak

(Quercus petraea)

 It contains good balance tannin, vanillin and oak lacton. It adds light fruity and spicy flavor.

 In France, Allier common oak is most popular sessile oak. It is used for Bordeaux and Bourgogne wine aging because fine annual rings enable limited air transmission and slow aging.

 Cask requires 120-200 year age oak tree.

Common Oak

(Quercus robur)

 It is porousand and contains rich tannin and polyphenol and less vanillin and oak lacton. It adds heavy fruity flavor like dry fruit.

 Spanish common oak cask is used as sherry cask for whisky aging because most of heavy sherry (Pedro Ximenez, Oloroso) cask is made by it.
 In France, Limousin is most popular common oak. It is used for cognac aging because wide annual rings enable higher air transmission and 

 Cask requires 200-260 year age oak tree.

American White Oak

(Quercus Alba)

 It has rich vanillin and oak lacton and less tannin. It add vanilla and coconut flavor.

 America white oak cask is used as bourbon cask for whisky aging because almost all Bourbon cask is made by it and burned inside.
 Some new cask is also used for whisky aging.

 Cask requires 80-100 year age oak tree.

Mizunara Oak

 It is most oak lacton rich oak. It has also vanillin, tannin and other flavor contents. It add spicy acid taste and flavor of oriental fragrant wood like Kyara or sandalwood. 

 Mizunara grows around Japan but cool weather is favorable so most famous Mizunara oak for cask is in Hokkaido.  

 It is very difficult to make cask from Mizunara because Mizunara wood is very hard to bend and more risk of leakage. Mizunara cask is most expensive cask because it requires 200-300 years age tree and Mizunara oak often grown bend.  

Cask hoop Stave Mizunara Head

Custom Cask

 There are several "XXX head cask" like "Mizunara head cask" today. This type cask has replaced head part from original. New head is normally rich flavor material.
 XXX head cask is often used for XXX cask finish. A few year aging after 1st aging in other cask.