I’ve been making my whiskey barrel cabinets for about 8 years now and the past couple of years have been the slowest. There are multiple factors involved in why that may have happened and I’m working on them. But nonetheless, I’m still at it with the small orders that I’ve had and I’d like to increase selling my unique whiskey and wine barrel cabinets to people like you who appreciate true craftsmanship.
First things first, is that I don’t acquire a barrel without inspecting it: How many uses has it been through? Too much rust on the hoops? Warped lids? How recently was it emptied?
Every barrel is unique and each one I pick has to be the best of the batch but they’re never uniform and flaws appear in all of them. Much attention is paid to making sure the lids are flat so glasses and bottles won’t wobble and seem unstable on the lid, so that they close evenly for latching and locking it, that they easily roll and they make you think that it is money well spent. There are so many steps and techniques that I’ve developed over the years to make sure you get what you pay for.
If the barrel was recently emptied or there’s still too much liquid in the staves then it’s not ready to be made into a whiskey or wine barrel cabinet. Moisture levels, expansion and contraction are part of the reasons as well as a lingering aroma.
I design, cut and weld my own hinges. All hardware on the barrel except the casters, lock and latches are made, cut, drilled, sheered and welded in-house. Custom wood burning and wooden inlays are also done in-house.
The most exciting and sometimes nervous milestone is when the hinge is cut, placed, screwed-in and aligned…….and the barrel cabinet closes beautifully. If it’s not up to my liking then I will keep making adjustments until it does.
Smaller adjustments are made, it gets a clear-coat, signed with a #000, branded with my signature (handwritten also) then wrapped and shipped for delivery.
That’s a whiskey or wine barrel cabinet built by Cooperage Cabinets.