wine education > The Origins of Double Barrel
Explore the Double Barrel Journey
At Jacob’s Creek we’re always looking for innovation. In fact, we have a whole team dedicated to creating new wines, all from a humble idea. And that’s where Double Barrel began - with a nagging question few had thought to answer. We got thinking, some whiskies are aged in wine barrels, so why not try the opposite for wine? Hence Double Barrel was born - a range of robust reds created from a two barrel process. Just like any other red, Double Barrel is first matured in traditional wine barrels in our barrel room. At Jacob’s Creek we use a mixture of French and American Oak wine barrels.
After maturation, things start to get interesting. We then transfer it from wine barrels to aged Scotch whisky and Irish whiskey barrels. And when we say aged, we mean it - our barrels were home to Irish and Scotch Whisky for up to 20 years.
But it’s not just the age of the barrels that creates flavour. Whisky barrels are built out of narrow, thin wooden staves, which allow more oxygen to permeate into our reds. Whisky barrels also aren’t toasted like wine barrels; they’re scorched fast at a high temperature, which activates the natural wood sugars in the White American Oak.
So how do we know when it’s ready? Put quite simply, by its taste. Each barrel of wine is individually tasted by our winemaker until it’s reached just the right level of richness, depth and character.
As you can see, it’s a long, slow journey to get from barrel to wine, and then back to barrel again, before finally ending up on your table. But we promise, it’s a journey well worth the wait.