FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Below are some of the most common questions we are asked. If you do not find the answer that you need, please Contact Us.
HOW CAN I DETERMINE MY EXCHANGE RATE
WHAT IS EARLY DELIVERY PRICING AND WHY DO WE OFFER IT?
We have offered early order pricing for almost ten years, as it offers advantages to both the coopers and wineries. Bringing the barrels in early allows the coopers to spread out their production and shipments so more wineries can be serviced during the year. Wineries that order early are not only rewarded with a significantly lower cost per barrel, but also receive the guarantee that they will have barrels in their cellars prior to harvest.
Wineries that order early need to be willing to accommodate the barrels early as well.
DO YOU SELL WHISKEY BARRELS?
Some of our cooperages can produce smaller barrels which are becoming more commonly used in spirits production, particularly Whiskey. Please note, all smaller barrels are custom made. Check with our office for ordering times.
DO YOU SELL SMALL BARRELS?
Yes! The following small barrels are available from Coopers Damy and Billon. Please enquire with your local sales agent.
28 litre (7.4 gallon)
56 litre (15 gallon)
114 litre (30 gallon)
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FRENCH, AMERICAN AND EASTERN EUROPEAN OAK?
See Bouchard Cooperages' Forest Origin Comparison Article
WHY ARE FRENCH OAK BARRELS SO MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE THAN AMERICAN OAK BARRELS?
The most significant reason is the smaller yield obtained from a log of French oak vs. American oak (see the next question). Another factor is the current high value of the Euro relative to the US dollar.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SPLIT VS.
French oak is physiologically different in structure than American oak, and requires hand splitting. This is one of the primary reasons why French oak barrels cost more than American oak barrels.
American oak (Quercus alba) is richer in tyloses, which seal the pores and tubes of the wood. This means American oak is generally less porous than the French variety. Being impermeable, the American oak can be sawn into staves rather than hand-split along the grain of the wood, as is required for French oak (Q. petraea and Q. robur), to prevent leakage. Sawing the oak into staves means that coopers can use over twice as much wood from each log in stave production.
WHAT DOES A BARREL DO DURING THE MATURATION PROCESS TO IMPROVE WINE?
A barrel performs two important functions. It allows a very slow introduction of oxygen into the wine and imparts the character of the wood into the wine.
WHAT IS THE WARRANTY ON OUR BARRELS
One year guarantee against leakage.