The timber used at present is the Quercus Petraea and the Quercus Pedunculata species of oak which, mixed together in proportions perfected by us over two centuries of experience, guarantee a wonderful bouquet. We can also produce casks made from other kinds of timber like cherry (Prunus Avium e P. Cerasus), acacia (Robininia Pseudoacacia), ash (Fraxinum Excelsior), chestnut (Castanea Vesca ) and other on request.
Over a century’s experience as well as continual scientific research, allows us to a steady improvement of the quality standard of the wood used. Chemical analysis are realized thanks to our Botti & Barrique NIR® system to evaluate the concentration of the aromatic compounds (Total extract, Elagitannins, Phenols, Aldehydes, Lactones, Furans, Vanilline to name but a few).
We purchase the timber directly from the best European forests in France, Slavonia and Germany, where our experts choose only the best part of the timber.
In Conegliano the wood is selected by our expert craftsmen. In Conegliano, the wood is cut using the quarter-sawn method for casks and the ‘split’ method (‘a spacco’) for barrels. Both of these methods leave the wood fibres intact, keeping them parallel.
Only the best wood which passes strict selection controls is chosen to be seasoned naturally while the wood that does not reach our standards is resold.
Obviously the wood chosen must be top quality, without knots, splits, traces of ring etc. because these would cause leakage and deformation.
Natural aging is a very important step in the selection of the wood and is indeed the only method to achieve perfect physical and chemical stabilisation of wood, especially if it is oak which as colloidal sap.
Physical, because if wood is dried artificially it swells when it comes into contract with a liquid, thus causing the cask to deform and burst. Chemical, because only atmospheric agents can degrade the sap and solubilise the hard tannins (a long chemical chain reaction) thus ensuring a sweet, aromatic discarge from the wood without a green or astringent after-taste.
Naturally seasoned wood cannot be bought commercially as it is necessary only for cask manufacture and not for other industries. It is therefore the job of the cask manufacturer to carry out this seasoning on its own premises considering that 8/10 months per cm. of thickness are necessary to guarantee a continuous supply of naturally seasoned wood.
Our premises covering 14.000 m3 (corresponding to 75 hectares of forest), guarantees that all the wood used in the building of casks is the best quality and that it is naturally seasoned for at least 8/10 months per cm. of thickness.