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fa-1397
09-12-2009, 08:38 PM
I'm preparing to add some American Oak Cubes (Medium Toast) to a batch of mead I'm finishing and I just want to get your recommendations for sanitizing them. I steamed a 1/3 cup of these cubes for 20 minutes before adding them to my lasts 5 gallon batch, but after 6 weeks the oak flavor was imperceptible in my mead. I'm not sure if the steaming process robbed me of precious oakiness, but I either need to add more oak this time or experiment with a different method for sanitizing the cubes. Should I just bake them in the oven for 15 minutes or so or should I just stick with steaming and add more oak? Thanks for your help.

wayneb
09-12-2009, 08:58 PM
Steam will remove a lot of the oak components, as will boiling. What I do is to rinse them to remove the wood dust, and then soak them in a potassium metabisulfite solution for about 10 minutes prior to putting them in the carboy.

fa-1397
09-12-2009, 09:22 PM
Steam will remove a lot of the oak components, as will boiling. What I do is to rinse them to remove the wood dust, and then soak them in a potassium metabisulfite solution for about 10 minutes prior to putting them in the carboy.
Thanks, WayneB. Would StarSan work? I've been trying to avoid adding sulfites to my mead.

wayneb
09-13-2009, 12:06 AM
It would work, but the reason that I use metabisulfite is that the small amount of sulfites left on the surface of the cubes will dissipate quickly once they are in the must. There's virtually no sulfite added to the mead.