All of the Apple, Pear, Cherry, Black Walnut, Maple, Ash, Oak, and Birch wood used in La Collina pieces has been harvested at our farm and dried for several years.[Exceptions include the few items we offer with Olive wood sourced directly from a farmer's prunings in Campomarino, Italy; and upcycled Wenge and Mahogany off-cuts which we "rescue" from a local mill.] We never kiln-dry our wood – it might require less time, but so does microwaving a Thanksgiving turkey. Some things are worth waiting for.
Leather Hill Farm - Orchard, Pasture, Gardens
Our goal is to showcase the beauty of the wood and to create pieces which are attractive to the eye, comfortable to use, and which remind us that these are one-of-a-kind pieces and not mass-produced, big box flotsam.
We do not finish our wood with vegetable oils, which may go rancid, or with polyurethane finishes, which can impart a “plastic” feel to the wood and may flake off over time. Our charcuterie and end-grain cutting boards receive several coats of a food-safe drying oil over the course of two months before being polished with our custom wax blend. It is normal for a finish to fade over time; this may be restored by using La Collina’s “Cera della Nonna” (a recipe of our own beeswax with carnauba wax, mineral and citrus oils). La Collina kitchenware should be washed and dried by hand. Please do not put these items in the dishwasher as the intense heat will ruin the finish.
We are blessed to have a large variety of beautiful hardwood on our land. We take advantage of those trees which are victims of Mother Nature's pruning (high winds, winter storms, etc.), or those species weakened by age, disease or natural predators (like the Emerald Ash Borer which is currently decimating this species of tree).