Why are Next Generation Barrels more consistent than oak barrels?Pierre-Benn de Villiers
The widely accepted “Coopers rule” about barrel consistency says that out of every 10 ‘exactly the same’ barrels, 2 will be ‘excellent’, 6 will be ‘as expected’ and 2 will be ‘sub-par’.
This inconsistency is due to random variation in oak wood quality as depicted by a ‘Gaussian curve’ (this is caused primarily by tree-to-tree quality variation), toasting variability and variations in Oxygen Transfer Rate (carpentry, bung hole & stave jointing).
Next Generation Barrels don’t suffer from this curse. They offer consistent oxygen permeability through the polymer, consistent and repeatable convection toasting and higher randomisation of staves (minimisation of tree-to-tree quality variation)