Just about everyone has a cutting board of some sort. They’re handy to have and can be quite beautiful. The people over at Larch Wood Canada make their own end-grain butcher block cutting boards and they are simply gorgeous. Unlike (I assume) most companies out there, Larch Wood has their own mill so they can control the quality of their project from the very beginning until they send it off to their customers. The video below documents the entire labor-intensive process.
It all starts off with the wood they get from a local company. The type of wood they use is called larch (also known as tamarack and juniper).
This 15-minute video shows the entire process from beginning to end. To give you an idea of what you’ll be seeing, here is a little guide: cut logs into boards (1:00), dry the wood in the kiln for 16–20 days (2:25), cut and plane (3:15), sent through molder to make sticks into correct size (5:24), pieces are handpicked for cutting board designs (5:41), glued together (6:10), planed and crosscut to size (7:32), second gluing (8:03), sanding (8:53), edges are rounded (9:35), logo burned on (9:45), more sanding (9:58), two coats of oil are applied (10:20), mixture of beeswax and mineral oil rubbed on with cloth (10:40), board is buffed, rubber feet are screwed on (11:06), and it is finally wrapped in plastic and ready to be shipped out to customers (11:37).
There is a lot to see in the video, but I want to talk about my favorite aspects of this process. What I really think is worth pointing out is the part when the pieces are handpicked for the design. While they could just stack random boards and see what they come up with, they instead have a person whose job it is to pick them out and find the best pattern. I think the end results (below) speak for themselves.
Another part of this video that I thought was interesting was the very end, after the board was completed. Once the board is done and sent off to the customers, it is important that they are taken care of so they can last for (possibly) generations. Not everyone knows the best way to take care of an end-grain cutting board, and having information presented like this makes it easy to follow along.