Customers often say: “Why American Hardwoods?”
We use such high quality English Oak to make practically all of our Life Style products – it raises eyebrows when we say: “We use another source of Timber to construct our Chopping Boards.”
The truth is, our entire company is built upon the idea that we source and use only the finest and best materials for the job. Research is where it starts – knowing your timber, sourcing the best timber for the job, using the best equipment and skills… It’s not difficult, we just do it and do it well.
It all started with the wooden chopping board. This is the heart of our production line. We have been supplying the trade for many years with professional chopping boards before we began selling to private customers. It has been said that anyone can make a chopping board, but to make a board that has to survive in a professional kitchen is on another level. This is why we have chosen to use the timbers we do. It is the perfect timber to use for these products. Make no mistake, our Kitchen Boards are not just a novel gift, they have been constructed to cope with day-to-day working kitchen life. Like a good quality kitchen knife, our Boards are built for the job and built to last.
We use the finest Furniture Grade American Hardwoods found in the Northern Appalachia Region of New England. Sourced from sustainable managed Amish saw mills from the very heart of the region.
Firstly, because they are so hard! On balance, these slow-growing trees are over 15% harder than their European rivals. We only use the Heartwood, the most prized portion of the tree, this is because the timber is at its most strongest and has very little defects. However, we have gone one step further, and only use Furniture Grade. This is the few selected pieces cut from the Heartwood and graded by Timber Graders as Furniture Grade, the highest quality. This on a whole makes up less than 15% of the tree. This Grade has become the most sought after by fine furniture makers.
Secondly, because of the Timbers grain. In our experience, the very best flooring, kitchen worktops and furniture we have ever seen has been made from American Hardwoods. The flawless grain and consistent colour, make it easier to match staves together, giving the appearance of a single piece of timber rather than a board made from several parts. It is also the most staggeringly beautiful timber we have ever used and that is no exaggeration.
Everything we use is FSC and PEFC and always will be.
Prime A Grade English Oak:
There is something romantic about using English Oak. Call it tradition, eco-friendly, but just getting your hands on a timber that has grown on english soil, managed on an english historic country estate for generations, felled and sawn less than 25 miles away from your workshop is quite a privilege.
English Oak has been regarded as the king of all oak trees. It has such a rich golden colour. Yes we do use American White Oak for our Boards but it has one flaw. American White Oak does not do well outside due to open capillaries in the timber, if not well treated fungus can set in. It is best suited for internal joinery.
Being in the Surrey Hills, we have a great source of English Oak on our doorstep and to most joinery workshops and carpenters we know, this would be sufficient. Still, we have gone one step further. We hand-pick everything, right down to the Beech we use to make our garden pegs to ensure the highest quality.
As with our Board construction, we only use Heartwood, the most sturdy, most prized portion of the tree and of course, the most expensive. This makes up about 20% of the tree, and the majority of what we use is Quarter Sawn. Apart from being the most stable and resistant from warping, it also displays an incredible yet subtle ribbon-like pattern called Medullary Rays, seen across the face of the grain like streaks of oil in water.
When it comes to choosing good quality materials, it doesn’t get better than this.