Stephanie and I decided to use the long Thanksgiving weekend to make Andrew Bell’s Ginger Wine recipe. The first step, however, is to prepare the oak barrel.
The cask was ordered from Oak Barrels, Ltd. and came with specific instructions. The first order of business was to fill the barrel with water and drain it out to remove any bits of charred wood from the insides that might have come loose.
Next was to tap in the spigot with a rubber mallet until snug…
…and then fill it again, this time with hot water, and plug it.
Now it has to sit for 24 hours. This process will cause the staves to swell and seal the joints so it won’t leak. Once this is done, we can begin making the liquor!
Who knows? This may become our new Thanksgiving tradition!
Gordon Bond is a NJ native with a passion for Garden State history…and finding a good single malt scotch. In 2008, he founded Garden State Legacy, a free online quarterly NJ history magazine and resources website. He has written five books and numerous articles on a wide variety of NJ history.