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Wheat Used To Make Barrels

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I was doubting that wine,whiskey,rum,etc. barrels were held together by wheat containing glue as I had heard. The pieces really aren't glued together I thought, so I went to a couple of web sites to see what was what. I found out, much to my horror, that though the staves (planks) are not glued together, when the heads are set into the ends of the barrel, the groove they fit into is coated with a wheat paste. I was wondering if anyone had looked into whether or not this is still common practice. It seems like an alternative material could be used to seal the heads. Cooperage (barrel making) is a time honored tradition and I fear that the wheat is probably still used. Has anyone researched this already? I figured I would check in before going through the trouble of contacting barrel companies myself. Maybe the industry could use a little pressure to make minor change that would mean a lot to some of us.

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I have no concrete evidence, but I have read that this is outdated and only something that is used in some European producers.

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We have heard this many times.

None of the major organizations concerned with gluten list wine as a concern. The Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG), the Celiac Sprue Association (CSA), the Canadian Celiac Association (CCA)--none of them mention wine as a concern. I am strongly inclined to believe that if this was a real issue, at least one of them would be warning us about it--if not all of them.

Enjoy your oak barrel aged wine. I do.

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I have no concrete evidence, but I have read that this is outdated and only something that is used in some European producers.

Well, maybe it would be worth my time to check in with a few barrel makers just to lay this to rest. Pusser's Rum is something I have been wanting to try again, but I have never gotten any response from them re gluten issues. I wonder if they are one of those European companies that still uses the wheat. A lot of history and tradition behind that Rum. Sure tastes good though.

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I doubt it. Wine barrels here are just held by plastic and metal. 'Tis all.

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Well, maybe it would be worth my time to check in with a few barrel makers just to lay this to rest. Pusser's Rum is something I have been wanting to try again, but I have never gotten any response from them re gluten issues. I wonder if they are one of those European companies that still uses the wheat. A lot of history and tradition behind that Rum. Sure tastes good though.

Go for it. I stand by my statement that if this was a real concern, you would be joined by the groups I mentioned (and others) in raising this as a concern. Until one of them picks up on a worry, barrels will not be on my watch list.

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I was doubting that wine,whiskey,rum,etc. barrels were held together by wheat containing glue as I had heard. The pieces really aren't glued together I thought, so I went to a couple of web sites to see what was what. I found out, much to my horror, that though the staves (planks) are not glued together, when the heads are set into the ends of the barrel, the groove they fit into is coated with a wheat paste. I was wondering if anyone had looked into whether or not this is still common practice. It seems like an alternative material could be used to seal the heads. Cooperage (barrel making) is a time honored tradition and I fear that the wheat is probably still used. Has anyone researched this already? I figured I would check in before going through the trouble of contacting barrel companies myself. Maybe the industry could use a little pressure to make minor change that would mean a lot to some of us.

I haven't done any major research - from what I recall, new labeling for wine will come into effect (in Canada) this August - and (if I remember correctly) it will include information about how wine is filtered also (e.g. using egg, fish parts). I have receieved some flack from people who claim that I haven't had a gluten reaction to wine - but I dismiss them. There are some wines I avoid, and some that I can consume safely. It's been a matter of trial & error for me, being as sensitive as I am. I know when I've been "hit". If you haven't had a reaction, I wouldn't worry about it. Enjoy!

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I have said before, I watched an episode of Dirty Jobs, with Mike Rowe, where he visited a cooperage associated with a particular winery, and they were sealing the barrels with wheat paste. This was most definitely in the US. Also most definitely in the past ten years. I do not recall the name of the winery, although I would imagine getting in touch with Discovery they'd be happy to tell us. I will do so and let you all know.

I suppose it's possible this is the only cooperage in the US that still does this. I'm not sure what the probability of that is though.

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I haven't done any major research - from what I recall, new labeling for wine will come into effect (in Canada) this August - and (if I remember correctly) it will include information about how wine is filtered also (e.g. using egg, fish parts). I have received some flack from people who claim that I haven't had a gluten reaction to wine - but I dismiss them. There are some wines I avoid, and some that I can consume safely. It's been a matter of trial & error for me, being as sensitive as I am. I know when I've been "hit". If you haven't had a reaction, I wouldn't worry about it. Enjoy!

That's great that Canada is doing something about revealing the agents used for "fining" the wine. It's about time someone did. There was a story about some French vineyards using cow blood derived proteins to fine their wines a couple years ago. The concern then was possible mad cow disease contamination.

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Here is an interesting read on the subject of gluten in wine. The Problem of Gluten in Wine

I suggest reading the replies to this blog also. For disclosure purposes, I drink wine and will continue to do so.

EDIT (added): It is my opinion that wine is safe and I am not suggesting that anyone should be concerned about gluten in wine. It is just interesting to learn...

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Last summer I stayed at Triple creek Ranch in Montana for a wine weekend which featured St Suprey Vineyards from the Napa Valley. The winemaker, Michael Scholz, was there sharing his wines. I spoke to him at length about this. I was only less than a year into Celiac and had read the same wheat paste arguements. According to him the amount of wheat paste that may be used on oak barrels would not be an issue. The wine makers of the better wines ($10 a bottle and up) fit their barrels together in such a fashion that it is not necessary. He was not aware of the practice in his winery orothers dealing with quality wines. he could not comment on this practice for the lesser expensive wines.

Since this came from the winemaker himslef I take it as truth and have no worries about drinking that wonderful fruit of the vine.

You can find any kind of answer to any kind of question on line. The problem is finding an accurate answer. I figure getting an answer straight from the source is pretty reliable. I feel quite comfortable drinking my wine with no worries about gluten, but everyone has to do what makes them feel best.

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Here is an interesting read on the subject of gluten in wine. The Problem of Gluten in Wine

I suggest reading the replies to this blog also. For disclosure purposes, I drink wine and will continue to do so.

EDIT (added): It is my opinion that wine is safe and I am not suggesting that anyone should be concerned about gluten in wine. It is just interesting to learn...

Thanks, that was an interesting read. I stumbled across some previous forum topics about wine and it seems like it may be a concern depending on your level of sensitivity. Has anyone done enough research to know which semi cheap wines are safe? I know the cheaper ones probably never hit a wooden barrel and as long as the fining agents are gluten free, they would probably be ok. Has anyone checked into the whites and blushes from Taylor, Ernest and Julio Gallo or maybe some that are a little more high end. I am generally part of the $10 and under crowd. I would just like to know a brand I can grab at the grocery store without having to worry.

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I like barefoot

Does that mean you have checked them out re fining agents and barrels?

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no. it means I've consumed lots and not yet had a problem :rolleyes:

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no. it means I've consumed lots and not yet had a problem :rolleyes:

Ya lush....

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no. it means I've consumed lots and not yet had a problem :rolleyes:

Me too. :rolleyes:

Barefoot, Fresca with a slice of orange on ice is a great summer drink.

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no. it means I've consumed lots and not yet had a problem :rolleyes:

:P

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