Our environmentally sustainable process

Developed over the last 3 years in the Margaret River and Mornington Peninsula wine districts, the patent protected RenewOak process has been tailored to the needs of wineries that rely on oak for quality production.

Our rejuvenation process utilises bespoke and inert abrasive materials to “sand” the internal surface of the staves and head without dismantling the barrel or compromising structural integrity. All barrel residues such as tartrates that are not effectively removed by pressure cleaning, and a fine layer of the oak surface are removed, leaving a clean timber finish ready to impart desired properties to the wine. 

The process is completely “organic” and does not involve the use of chemicals. All materials involved are chemically inert and no harmful residues remain in the barrel. 

Our process is suitable for used red or white barrels up to 12 years old that have been kept in reasonable condition (i.e. structurally sound, well hydrated) and the following barrel sizes:  barrique, hogshead and puncheon.

Red-to-white conversion: Wine maturation trials undertaken by RenewOak (and testing by AWRI) have indicated that it is possible to rejuvenate an ex-red barrel (say less than 6 years old) such that the barrel can than be effectively used for white wine. The rejuvenated barrel does not add colour or other undesirable traits to the white wine produced.

Key aspects of the process
  • No barrel disassembly, no structural damage to the barrel
  • Removal of all residues from internal surfaces using inert materials
  • Pressure washout leaving no harmful materials in the barrel
  • All process materials recovered and recyclable
  • Waste water no different to current wash processes
  • Steam clean upon request to ensure barrel has no bacterial presence
  • Sulphured for storage if required.

Process outcomes

2015 D&J White Barrique

Before cleaning showing tartrate layer evident on staves and head

2006 AP John Red Barrique

Before cleaning in good condition with heavy staining

Results from trials undertaken July 2020 at Massoni Wines, Dromana, Victoria