Author Topic: cedar chips  (Read 3405 times)

Offline boris4

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cedar chips
« on: August 23, 2012, 12:20:59 AM »
 ???   does anybody know of a website/store that sells cedar chips for home brewing?

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2012, 01:35:48 AM »
What kind of cedar are you looking for?  For Spanish cedar I bought a plank from the specialty lumber shop and then just use a chop saw to cut off pieces to "dry chunk" my beer.  You need very little contact time, so I don't know if I would go with chips.  I find three days to be about right, then you need to remove the chunks or it gets overpowering.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

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cedar chips
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2012, 04:31:45 AM »
what about the planks for cooking salmon? I see those in the grocery store by the grilling stuff.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2012, 04:57:56 AM »
The "cedar" they use for the humidor series of beers at Cigar City is actually Spanish Mahogany, not cedar.  It's the same wood they put in boxes of cigars, which a friendly cigar shop proprietor would surely give you if you bought a cigar or two.
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Offline boris4

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2012, 12:27:25 AM »
not real peticular on what kind of cedar, just looking for that cedar flavor. had a red ale aged on a cedar spiral (cask) from a local colorado brewery where i live and it was fantastic and they were kind enough to share there recipe and they said they got their cedar from cigar city brewing. so as jeffy posted maybe it is actually a spanish mahogany. maybe i will have to go sniffing around. thanx guys!

Offline Pinski

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2012, 12:57:21 AM »
The "cedar" they use for the humidor series of beers at Cigar City is actually Spanish Mahogany, not cedar.  It's the same wood they put in boxes of cigars, which a friendly cigar shop proprietor would surely give you if you bought a cigar or two.

That's what I was thinking as I read the OP. The cigar shops I go to always have a bunch of empty boxes. You can buy them inexpensively or as Jeff said they will probably give you a couple if you buy some stogies.  Look for one that has a character you find appealing and use the interior wood. I see a maduro brown in my future. 
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2012, 01:03:30 AM »
The "cedar" they use for the humidor series of beers at Cigar City is actually Spanish Mahogany, not cedar.  It's the same wood they put in boxes of cigars, which a friendly cigar shop proprietor would surely give you if you bought a cigar or two.
Yeah, Spanish cedar is neither Spanish nor cedar.  That's just what it's called.  Smells awesome though :)
Tom Schmidlin

Offline AmandaK

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2012, 08:35:40 AM »
You need very little contact time, so I don't know if I would go with chips.  I find three days to be about right, then you need to remove the chunks or it gets overpowering.

I'm going to second this. Spanish Cedar (if that's what you're going with) seems to have a very fine line between balanced and licking cedar.

I did have a very nice American IPA aged on Spanish Cedar at this year's NHC though. Very balanced. Almost made me want to brew one. Almost. :)
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Offline nateo

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2012, 08:40:44 AM »
I had the fortune of trying one of Jeff's cedar IPAs. The wood was pretty assertive, but not overwhelming. It was nicely balanced and a good beer. IIRC he aged it for 3 days on the wood, but maybe he can say more about how he did that. Any more cedar character, and it would've been objectionable, though, so use a light touch.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2012, 02:09:52 PM »
I had the fortune of trying one of Jeff's cedar IPAs. The wood was pretty assertive, but not overwhelming. It was nicely balanced and a good beer. IIRC he aged it for 3 days on the wood, but maybe he can say more about how he did that. Any more cedar character, and it would've been objectionable, though, so use a light touch.

I split that batch and added a 5" spiral to one half (5 gallons) for 3 days.  The other half tasted like an average American Pale Ale.  The half with wood took on a huge grapfruit character and was very perfumey in the nose.  The wood came through like cedar would taste if that means anything.  It has had very good comments at competitions and scored in the high 30's most of the time.
I'm going to add the same spiral to another keg of IPA this weekend and see what happens.
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Offline boris4

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2012, 12:03:49 AM »
thanx again you guys, i think i have made up my mind on "spanish cedar" from a cigar shop. that way i can enjoy a stogie after brew day.

Offline Pinski

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2012, 12:20:32 AM »
Cool! Definitely report back on how it turns out.
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Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2012, 12:33:46 PM »
The "cedar" they use for the humidor series of beers at Cigar City is actually Spanish Mahogany, not cedar.  It's the same wood they put in boxes of cigars, which a friendly cigar shop proprietor would surely give you if you bought a cigar or two.
Yeah, Spanish cedar is neither Spanish nor cedar.  That's just what it's called.  Smells awesome though :)

That sounds like a fun experiment, esp. since I don't get Cigar City here! What beer have you used it in?
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Offline jeffy

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2012, 02:12:02 PM »
The "cedar" they use for the humidor series of beers at Cigar City is actually Spanish Mahogany, not cedar.  It's the same wood they put in boxes of cigars, which a friendly cigar shop proprietor would surely give you if you bought a cigar or two.
Yeah, Spanish cedar is neither Spanish nor cedar.  That's just what it's called.  Smells awesome though :)

That sounds like a fun experiment, esp. since I don't get Cigar City here! What beer have you used it in?

I've used it in American IPA, but it tends to dry out the flavor, so a higher mash temp for more residual sugars is good.  West Coast late hopping with tropical fruit type hops works best IMO.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
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AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: cedar chips
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2012, 11:03:05 PM »
Yep, I've used it with cascade, amarillo, and simcoe.
Tom Schmidlin