NYTimes: American Oak Barrels

Quite in interesting article in today’s NYTimes:

on the production in Missouri of American oak barrels.
Ridge (and SilverOak) has used American oak, based on a French study yrs ago, in the production
of MonteBello. But Am.oak barrels coopered to French standards. One of the problems Paul has had to
deal with, from time to time, at tastings, someone coming up to him & gushing how much they like
the French oak in the MonteBello. Paul gently corrects them and gives them the background story.

Nice article… like the quote

Evidence of barrel making dates back to the Celts in third-century B.C. Spain.

the tannin have Dp [density positions] of the chain of tannin from American oak that are larger as the oak grows faster than lets say oak from french Allier that is one of the slowest growing Oaks… Obviously each producer will pontificate their Oak theory… I think of oak as a seasoning an ancillary back-note, not the structure of the wine, for me it’s about the fruit… as the late great Professor Peynaud said

if we are taking about the Oak there is a problem, wine is about fruit

none the less I often think some people like the Oak more than the fruit ??? I am sure everything thought about can have a probability …

This is basically an article about how business has boomed over the past ten years. The market for used Bourbon barrels has been especially good in Scotland, so the distillers are having no trouble there.

With the greater demand for American oak, a lot of effort has been put in making saws with smaller imprint, so less is also during milling.