Recently, the founder of Bourbon Women, Peggy Noe Stevens, appeared in Garden & Gun magazine to talk about cask finished bourbons. Some excerpts follow & the full article link can be found at the bottom of the piece.
“It’s like a chef creating a great recipe—you really have to know the deep-down flavor profile of your original bourbon before you decide ‘what do we want to enhance?’ For example, I might taste a cherry note in a bourbon, and if I use Oloroso [sherry] barrels then I’ve just heightened that to an almost blackberry, sherry-like flavor.” A successful barrel-finished whiskey should harmoniously complement the original bourbon, however; not overpower or mask flavors. A short stint in a secondary barrel is often all it takes. “I’ve never heard of a finish that’s more than six months,” Stevens says.
Read more about barrel finishes & read some of Peggy’s tasting notes in the full article from Garden & Gun.