Barrel-Aged Cocktails: Modernising a Traditional Technique

Barrel-ageing cocktails was popularised by American bartender, Jeffrey Morganthaler, in 2009. The technique has become increasingly popular. Bartenders have taken this age-old tradition and applied it to cocktails. In doing so, they have opened a new frontier of flavour exploration and experimentation.

The process allows spirits to interact with the wood of the barrel. The wood imparts rich flavours, aromas, and colours into the liquid. The type of barrel used can have a significant impact on the flavour profile of the aged cocktail. Oak barrels are the most commonly used and give rich, complex flavours such as vanilla, caramel, and spice. Some bartenders are also experimenting with barrels that previously held wine, sherry, or other spirits.

Mezclar Range 

Whilst almost any cocktail can be barrel-aged, certain classics lend themselves particularly well to the ageing process. The Old Fashioned, with its blend of whiskey, sugar, and bitters, is a popular choice for barrel ageing, as the flavours mellow and meld together beautifully over time. Similarly, the Negroni, with its bold flavours of gin, vermouth, and Campari, takes on new depth and complexity when aged in a barrel.

Garnish Picks

To make a barrel-aged cocktail, first prepare the barrel by filling it with water for 24-48 hours to ensure it’s watertight, then drain and dry it. Choose a robust cocktail like a Negroni, Old Fashioned, Manhattan, or Boulevardier, mix the ingredients in a large bowl, and pour the mixture into the barrel using a funnel. Seal the barrel tightly and store it in a cool, dark place for 1-6 weeks, sampling periodically to monitor flavour development. Once the cocktail reaches the desired taste, empty the barrel into a storage container or bottle. When serving, add fresh garnishes as you would with any other cocktail.

Tiki Range

As the popularity of barrel-aged cocktails continues to grow, bartenders are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible, experimenting with new spirits, ingredients, and ageing techniques. From smoked cocktails aged in charred oak barrels to barrel-aged versions of classic tiki drinks, the possibilities are endless. Incorporating barrel-aged cocktails into your menu can be a real unique selling point and allow you to add subtleties and depth to the classics, as well as create something new altogether!


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Welcome to the Beaumont Blog.

In our bar blog you will find lots of great tips and tricks for your business; covering topics such as how to limit your wastage, increase your bottom line and impress your customers. You will also find all the information you need on our latest products, what is going on in the world of Beaumont TM and so much more. So if you are a bartender, barista, bar owner, publican or restaurateur then this is the blog for you:


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