A make-your-own whiskey kit is a gift that keeps on giving. These whiskey barrel kits come complete with everything you need to age and flavor your very own whiskey at home. Here, we have found the best 5 whiskey barrel sets out there to make your shopping a little easier.
Whiskey Barrel Sets Comparison Table
1 Liter Gold Barrel Gift Package
Personalized Mini Bourbon Whiskey
The Top 5 Best Whiskey Barrels
Now that you know a little more about what these at-home whiskey barrel gift sets entail, we can take a closer look at some of the best options available to buy. All of the below kits come with all the equipment needed to age and flavor your own whiskey at home.
The option to personalize these miniature barrels really adds a special touch to this one of a kind and unique gift. However, not all personalization options are the same and the contents of the at-home kits vary also, so read on to find out more details.
Wine Enthusiast Catalog - Personalised Barrel Whiskey Bootleg Kit
First on the list is this personalized set from The Wine Enthusiast Catalog. This kit is great for a number of reasons.
The oak barrel comes in three size options, one liter, two liters or five liter, which is great depending on how much whiskey you think the gift recipient is likely to want to age.
Three Essence Flavors
This kit comes with three essence flavors allowing the recipient to customize the flavor of their final product. The flavors that come with this kit are Kentucky Bourbon, Tennessee Whiskey and Highland Malt Scotch.
The final aspect that makes this kit a great option is the option to personalize the barrel.
The barrel has five different lines to personalize giving you 86 characters to create the perfect gift.
The final appearance of the personalized barrel is very professional and effective, having the overall look of a genuine distillers barrel.
Red Head Barrels - 1 Liter Gold Barrel Gift Package
Next on the list is this one-liter gift set from Red Head Barrels. This set does not have as many options as the Wine Enthusiast
Catalog when it comes to selecting the size of the barrel and personalizing the barrel with a message.
However, the reason this is a great kit is that they offer a vast selection of flavor essence options. With twenty options to choose from, this kit will allow you to create a truly unique flavored whiskey at home.
This oak barrel does have three personalization options. You have the choice of uploading an image from their database, your own image, or some text.
While the overall appearance of this barrel isn’t as professional and polished as some of the other options, the kit comes with everything you need to get going.
The addition of a flask, two shot glasses, and a stainless steel funnel also add a nice touch to this gift set.
Uncommon Goods - Personalised Whiskey Barrel
This whiskey barrel kit from Uncommon Goods features an oak barrel that is handmade in Virginia.
This set would make the perfect gift with options to customize the size and personalize the barrel’s appearance.
This whiskey barrel kit comes in two sizes, two liters or five liters and can be engraved with that special someone’s name for a personal touch.
Two Flavor Essences
Their whiskey barrel kit also comes with two flavor essences, one whiskey, and one rum, as well as funnels and a cleaning kit to keep the barrel in tip-top shape.
With the addition of a rum flavored essence, you are not just limited to aging and infusing your own whiskey.
You can age and infuse your own rum to help keep your home bar stocked with personalized and unique beverages.
The Man Registry – Personalized Mini Bourbon Whiskey Barrel
The Mini Bourbon Whiskey Barrel from The Man Registry provides a simple and personalized solution to the infusing and aging process.
These mini barrels can be used to age the whiskey and infuse natural flavor from the oak, or could be used for whiskey presentation and decanting.
The personalization options for these barrels come with two lines, giving you thirty characters to work with.
There are also three size options one liter, two liters or three liters.
Handmade in America
These barrels are handmade in America out of repurposed Kentucky bourbon barrels, so you are guaranteed an authentic miniature barrel of the same quality that is found in actual distilleries.
This set does not include any flavor essences so would be a great option for those looking to recreate a natural oak infused flavor as opposed to something artificially flavored.
North West Gifts - Whiskey Distillery Barrel Personalized
This Whiskey Barrel set from North West c comes with a multitude of sizing options.
This is your best bet if you are looking to age and flavor larger amounts of whiskey at home.
North West Gifts offer six different size options, one, two, three, five, ten and twenty liters, so no matter what size you are looking for you will most likely be able to find it here.
Personalized by Name, Distillery, City, and Date
These oak barrels can also be personalized with a name, distillery, city, and date to add a professional looking finish to these home barrels.
North West Gifts also offer a variety of add-on options including leather coasters and a leather-wrapped flask, which would no doubt add an extra special touch to this gift.
5 Best Whiskey Barrel Gift Sets
If you are looking for an unusual gift for the whiskey lover in your life, we may have found the perfect solution.
With an at-home whiskey barrel kit, you get to experience the wonder of making your very own unique blend of whiskey.
Complete with everything you need from start to finish, these kits are the gift that keeps on giving.
However, some are better than others and we have found the best five out there at the moment.
How is whiskey made?
Before we get into the gift sets, let's take a closer look at how this delicious beverage is actually made in professional distilleries.
The process itself is complex and requires great skill to execute at a high standard.
Whiskey is made all over the world but two of the most famous countries for manufacturing whiskey is the United States of America and Scotland.
Process from Start to Finish
The process from start to finish is very similar in both places but with one small difference, the base that starts the whole process.
As whiskey is a grain-based spirit, the first step to making whiskey is selecting the grain that will form the base.
Grains that are used to make whiskey include barley, corn, wheat, and rye or a mix of these may be used also.
The grain selected as the base of the whiskey will affect the taste of the final product.
Once the grain has been selected, it is cooked to expose and release the sugars from the grain.
The Cooking Process
Through the cooking process, the grain will begin to break down and will end up looking like a mashed pulp.
After the grain has cooked down and the sugars have been released, yeast will be added to the mix.
The adding of yeast is critical in the whiskey making process. Yeast allows for the fermentation process to being.
The fermentation of the grain base takes a number of days to work and starts to turn the base into alcohol.
The process of the yeast fermenting the grain base happens based on the natural nature of yeast.
Yeast feeds on sugar and once added to the sugar-rich grain base, it gets to work doing what it does best. The yeast eats up all the sugar that was in the initial base and the final result creates a sourer flavored mixture.
When the yeast has finished its job, the mixture needs to be strained. While this may sound simple and straightforward, this part of the process is actually highly dangerous.
This is because the alcoholic vapor is being produced within the mixture, and this alcoholic vapor is highly flammable. So flammable that it will explode if it is exposed to an open flame or catches fire.
The yeast and grain mixture needs to be strained into something called a still which is where it will cook at around 80 degrees Celsius.
Delicious Glass of Whiskey
At this high temperature, the mixture will boil, allowing the alcohol to evaporate, releasing alcoholic vapor. The vapor is what will eventually be a delicious glass of whiskey.
The vapor is then “shocked” through condensation which is essentially cooling down the steam very quickly and turning it back into a liquid.
That liquid is your liquor. Now, in order for this alcohol to become authentic whiskey, it must be aged in a barrel.
Nearly all whiskey barrels are made out of oak wood, but cedar wood can also be used.
Flavors and Characteristics from the Wood
The wood that the barrel is made from will affect the flavor of the final product. As the whiskey ages, it takes on flavors and characteristics from the wood that the barrel is made out of.
During the aging process, the whiskey will be tasted to ensure it’s developing in flavor.
How long a whiskey is aged for is typically dependent on the base that was used to start it with. The aging process can take anywhere from three years, up to more than thirty years.
For example, whiskeys that started with a malt base take longer to mature than whiskeys with a grain base.
What do you need to distill your own whiskey?
Technically speaking, you will not be distilling your own whiskey with these at home sets. Making your own alcohol at home can be very dangerous and is actually illegal.
You will be using ready-made alcohol in these sets to infuse and age the spirit at home.
The aging and infusing will be achieved in a similar way to traditional, professional distilleries as you will place spirits into your own oak barrel.
An oak barrel is arguably the most important element to infuse and age your own whiskey at home, however, some of the at-home kits that we will take a closer look at below also come with some flavor essence.
Flavors that would typically be developed by the selected whiskey base and established over a long period of time can now be achieved easily in your home.
Using a flavor essence as part of your at-home kit will allow you to add more distinct flavor to the final product such as honey whiskey, Highland Malt Scotch, Kentucky Bourbon, or Irish whiskey.
There are many great options for at-home whiskey barrel kits. The kits themselves offer the opportunity to age your own whiskey at home in a real oak barrel.
These attractive kits really make a statement and with many personalization options available, make a great gift for anyone interested in whiskey.
Depending on what you are looking for in the final product, some of the gift sets mentioned above may be a better option than others.
If you are looking to create a unique blend of whiskey with a specific flavor the gift sets that come with essence flavors would make the best choice.
However, if you are looking for something that has a bit more character and authentic charm the best option would be the Mini Barrel Set from The Man Registry, as they pride themselves on crafting their miniature barrels out of genuine distillery barrels.
Whatever decision you make, a personalized miniature whiskey barrel gift set is a great idea for anyone that loves whiskey.
Receiving a personalized barrel to make a personalized blend of whiskey will make any whiskey enthusiast happy.
Using a miniature oak barrel at home allows you to create a unique flavored whiskey in the comfort of your own home.
Whiskey can be infused and flavored for years to come as long as the barrels are cared for and cleaned properly, making a whiskey barrel gift set the gift that keeps on giving.
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