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Are wine barrels the next trend in whisky?


Wine barrels here are the barrels used to age our common Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Franc and even Bordeaux-style blends, not "fortified wine" barrels (such as Shirley, Madeira, Port, Marsala, etc.).

Wineries typically customize/purchase barrels made of European or American white oak and use them once or more for a cumulative maximum of 2 years before replacing them with new ones. This gives whisky distilleries another option to buy


"used" barrels at a good price.

Wineries around the world planted and brewed with more than 50 mainstream grape varieties, including the top ranking Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Tempranillo, Syrah, Satony, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Grenache and other varieties, each with its own special flavor, some delicate, some majestic, some powerful and some light, which brings more possibilities for matured whisky.

Whether over-barreled or blended, wine casks bring either elegant, fresh, or crisp flavor complements to whisky maturation. In terms of flavor, wine barrels bring red fruit flavors such as cranberry, cherry, strawberry, apple, etc. Some special varieties of wine barrels will bring rosemary, juice sense. For whisky liquid effect, the wine cask can neutralize part of the too strong flavor, adding a sense of liveliness and freshness, improving the balance and hierarchy.

Some famous whisky distilleries such as Tamnavulin, GlenAllachie, Kavalan and Yamazaki Yamazaki are using wine casks.

Goalong distillery is also experimenting with various types of wine casks for aging, with Chardonnay casks, Sauvignon Blanc casks, Port casks, etc. all making an appearance at the Beijing Whisky Show.


Whisky practitioners are always looking for breakthroughs, the use of wine barrels from the initial style of seasoning, to slowly find a way to add fresh flavor, improve the body level and balance, and the development of STR technology, each advancement to add a layer of light to the wine barrel, to inject more vitality into the whisky industry.