100% Bulgarian Oak. After years of research and analyses, experts have shown that Bulgarian Oak offers similar flavour profile to French Oak.
There are 7 types of oak from the Quercus family in the Bulgarian forests and we use three of them – Quercus petraea (sessiliflora, extra fine grain), Quercus robur (fine grain) and Quercus frainetto (conferta). Research has indicated that the forest itself is just as important as the type of oak used.
Our barrels are extremely well suited for reds – Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Zinfandel and highly aromatic grape varieties that require structure, such as Syrah and Grenache, as well as whites – particularly Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, even Pinot Gris.
Bulgarian forests are relatively young (compared to French), ca. 80 to 100 years of age. We use oak aged 80 years or over from the best oak forests – the Moesio-Danubian termophilous oak forests and Strandja-Sakhar, assuring that only the straightest fine-grained oaks are used.
Our master coopers hand-pick each trunk before its labelled and transported to our factory. We strive to achieve consistency year-after-year.
At the cooperage we have implemented a further, and extremely rigorous stave inspection protocol. Each stave is individually inspected for overall quality and grain tightness. The experience of our wood sorters allows a rigorous selection based on grain size, grain uniformity, lack of knots, mineral lines and other imperfections that could affect the integrity or appearance of the barrel. The staves are then stored in the woodyard for seasoning.