I was inspired by a trip to Mexico (Zihuatanejo) over the holidays, to finish this instructable. The plan is to take some inexpensive 100% agave silver tequila, and turn it into reposado (rested) tequila. The definition of reposado is " aged a minimum of two months, but less than a year in oak barrels of any size". Since I didn't want to purchase an oak barrel, I started looking around the house for a solution. In lew of an oak barrel I came up with a glass vase, I have plenty of white oak in my shop but it's all kiln dried so it is not suitable for oak aging. The oak should be air dried for 2 to 3 years. As it happens we had a coastal live oak tree (quercus agrifolia) fall on our property 2 years ago. it was cut up for firewood. Live oak is a member of the red oak family and thus not suitable for barrel making. But I'm simply going to add chunks of toasted oak to the vase and age the tequila in that. This is uncharted territory as all the recipes I could find call for white oak.
Some way of splitting the wood down to size: https://www.instructables.com/tag/type-id/?sort=none&q=split+logs
Table saw (optional, a hand saw would work)
Barbecue grill, or oven.
Air dried oak (recommend white oak if you have it).
100% Agave silver tequila
Step 1: Prepare the Oak
Start by cutting the oak into small chunks. I used a log splitter, table saw and radial arm saw.
Step 2: Toast the Oak
I used a pellet grill to toast my oak at 300 degrees f for 1.5 hours. But a gas grill or oven will work just fine. Optional at this step would be to char the oak with a propane torch if you want a smoky flavor.
Step 3: Put It All Together
Drop the toasted oak blocks in the vase, pour in the tequila, I used a glass plate to weigh down the blocks. Cover and age for a minimum of 2 months, sample a minimum of every 30 days to prevent over oaking. I'll update this 'structable as I progress through the aging process.
Participated in the
Homebrew & Cocktails Contest