Burn, baby, burn

William M. Dowd photo and video

When your entire business relies on years of aging your spirit in charred barrels, you need a large and never-ending stream of properly prepared barrels. The automated process for charring oak barrels to be used to age bourbon and Tennessee whiskey is seen in the photo above taken at the Bluegrass Cooperage in Louisville, KY.

However, when only a piece of your business requires the use of charred barrels you can use a more personal, even artisanal, process, That's the case at Jose Cuervo's LaRojeña distillery in Tequila, Mexico, where I shot the footage below of a worker burning wood shavings in a small barrel to prepare it for aging añejo and extra añejo tequilas.

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