Our first brandy is the atypical "Bourbon Style" with it's robust flavor and racy 102 proof. That's what charred oak will do to ya. During an infrequent mellower mood, I also put away some of our brandy into toasted oak which is the historic practice. This does not dominate the apple so much and results in a taste that is more balanced between the wood and the original fruit. After a year in new oak, I transferred the spirit to a well-used Pinot Noir barrel to mature and soften (i.e. a finishing cask). After only a month, I can tell it was a good choice. The fruit is coming forward while the oak is taking on a supporting role.
Update: The color has become a warm salmon-y shade that is lovely. It's now been 24 months and the influences of the various casks have melded and mellowed. 375ml for $29.95.Purchase