THE CHÊNEOAK STORY
70 years of family passion
THE OAK ORIGIN
Located in east-central France lies the historic region of Burgundy. Famous for its UNESCO World Heritage status in recognition of the region's centuries-old history of viticulture and the remarkable diversity of its winegrowing terroir (land), as evident by the rolling plains of Pinot noir and Chardonnay vineyards, Burgundy is synonymous with history and elegance.
On top of this, the region is celebrated for an equally important –sustainable management of their beloved forests.
Here is where the longstanding partnership between Cheneoak and a local family sawmill began 10 years ago…
THE PIERRE FAMILY MILL
Keeping over 250 years of forest preservation alive
To the locals of Burgundy and the French Oak lumber community, John Pierre is a household name.
Why? Because John and his family – in collaboration with other local mills and the NFO (National Forests Office) – have dedicated their lives to the ethical cultivation and preservation of 200+ year old French Oak logs. In fact, they’ve been doing it for over 70 years.
In the past, French Oak was carefully selected by highly skilled woodsmen. The timber was painstakingly cut down and milled by hand, then left to dry in a clean, cool, and shady place for several years – stacked on raised foundations, without exposure to artificial heat – until sold. Simply put, it was travail acharné! (Hard work!)
Today, the local sawmill is operated by John’s granddaughter, Laura. Yet, despite advancements in technology, some proven practices remain. For instance, the French Oak is both air dried and kiln dried then stored in a humidity-controlled warehouse until sold.
Some old habits never die.