It’s coming together! We have a few more barrels this year. We also have insulation and a chilled area separated by plastic strips (which you’re looking through in this picture).
All of the barrels that we brought to the blasting were in good shape. Some people were not so lucky — actually, they were sold some bad used barrels and didn’t find out until they opened ’em up. Here’s a barrel with a bad case of mold. Compare this to the picture of the healthy barrel below.
This is the inside of one of our barrels a few minutes after being blasted with dry ice. I think this is a 2005 American oak.
We had one of barrels blasted last year and ended up winning a bunch of awards with the wine we made in it. So, this year we decided to have 6 more blasted. The process involves removing the head from the barrel, scraping the inside to get rid of blisters, and then putting it on this machine where dry ice is shot at it while it rotates.
Here’s the frozen inside of the barrel right after the blasting.
We collected all of our barrels together in one place this week in order to clean them up and get ready for crush. Here’s the ‘before’ picture. I’ll post an ‘after’ picture in a few days!