Posted 11 November 2019
Whilst Balvenie’s David Stewart is recognised as the inventor of finishing – re-racking liquid from one cask to another was an employed process long before he decided to utilise the transfer as a method for adding layers of additional aromas and flavours from a second cask of different origins. Re-racking was, and still is far from an uncommon site. We think of casks, laid down for decades, as impervious, near indestructible, but wear and tear and degradation takes places – particularly after repeated fills, or frequent warehouse movements. As such, there’s an intermittent need to re-rack liquid to simply prevent it from steadily dripping away. One wonders – particularly back in the day, when standards were more lax, how much liquid escaped - not via the greedy angels, but via a loss of structural integrity resulting in damp floors and near empty barrels. I dare say more than a bit.