Nobility of wood

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The art of selecting the wood

The noble French oak, its fine grain and the strength and subtlety of its aromas have made it for centuries the ultimate species for the aging of wines the world over.

The selection of the wood is a result of a skilful combination of the knowledge of the raw material, the savoir faire of its coopers and the findings of scientific research.

Radoux’s buyers, professionals of the wood industry, seek out the best specimens in the finest forests of the world.

poinçonnage et marquage des chênes

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Prestigious origins

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French oak

Radoux selects its finest specimens of sessile oak (quercus petraea) from the most beautiful forests of the East and Center of France, well known for their tight grain.

European oak

Other prestigious forests of Eastern Europe, especially Hungary, represent sources of high quality oak.

American oak

For its supplies of white American oak (quercus alba), Radoux goes to the finest forests around the great lakes, from Minnesota to the foot of Appalachians, passing through Missouri and Kentucky.

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A unique selection

However, the origin of the wood is not the only criterion which determines whether it can be used for making barrels. With the help of the work carried out by its R&D department on grain and origin, Radoux has adopted the strategy of selecting the wood grain on each individual log to ensure they are able to reproduce the same aromas.

The Oakscan® process, with its instantaneous measurement of the content of ellagitannins in the staves, provides Radoux with a unique tool to control the quality of its barrels.

douelles oakscan

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Complete traceability

Each barrel is clearly numbered with a unique data-matrix code which ensures complete traceability from the forest right into your cellars. We have defined strict specifications in our own stave mill and with our suppliers which allow us to identify the exact part of the forest in which we source our timber for each of the pallets of rough staves which enter our wood yard.

The unique serial number marked on each barrel enables us to trace back to the batches used, the origin, maturation, date of manufacture, its toast ...

Tonnellerie Radoux has been certified by Véritas for French oak and by PEFC for the sustainable forest management.

Radoux also holds the certification of recognition N° 059/RE granted by Bureau Veritas for the French origin of Radoux
« Chêne Français Origine Contrôlée » barrels.

code data matrix

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Control of supplies

Obtaining the rough staves we need is demanding: in order to achieve our quality standards, we only use 20% of the volume of timber for the manufacture of our barrels.

Of the remaining 80%, only the parts of the timber which present an oenological potential of good quality will be retained and used by our subsidiary Pronektar which specializes in wood for oenology.

Pronektar produces oak staves, chips and granulates for wine makers to use in their vats. The noble oak wood selected by Radoux is therefore used in its totality and ensures we can trace all our range of alternative products and respect the oak by making maximum use of the forests resources.

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tracage laser des douelles

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Maturation

It takes nearly two centuries for an oak tree to reach maturity. For the rough stave to become a finished stave, the wood must undergo a slow process of maturation.

It has to be matured, and washed to be freed of the most astringent of its tannins, and to reduce its moisture level. In order to make the most of natural aging, the positioning of the pieces on the pallets and the way they are stacked is important. The spaces between the pieces help the water and air to circulate.

The organoleptic profile of the wood is transformed and refined through a slow drying process and the action of the rain and wind.

The best way to wash away the most astringent tannins and obtain the best of the qualities of the wood, is to let time do its magic, leaving the wood in the open air in a natural and preserved environment.

All our wood is matured for an optimum period of up to 36 months.

stock de douelles

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