If there’s anything we know, it’s that our premium butcher block cutting boards bring together every kind of palate known to man. Carnivores dine harmoniously with pescatarians, herbivores, and everything in between. It all started when two dudes decided to merge their love of the great outdoors with their inner pyro because… Well, why not?
While our origin story pairs best with Scotch and sitting around a campfire, we’ll save that for another time. Today, we’ve got something even better to share. =
You’ve all been asking how a Neanderthal butcher block comes into existence. Sure, it’s made from sustainably sourced Ohio Black Walnut but what does that actually mean? How do we craft a board strong enough to hold the big ass steaks and briskets few have finished in one sitting? What’s the science behind the grooves that collect the most savory of juices?
We can’t reveal all of our secrets, but some things are just too good to keep to ourselves.
This post takes you behind the scenes of Neanderthal territory. Read on to get an inside look at the craftsmanship that goes into building butcher block cutting boards you know and love.
Achievement Unlocked: Grill Master
With a Neanderthal cutting block nearby, no one will ever second guess who the real grill master is. Achieving this status doesn’t happen overnight - our cutting boards would be worthless if that were the case. The final product entails extreme attention to detail and sourcing the right materials to give you a durable finish that can hold its own no matter how tall the order is.
Before impressing your guests, in-laws, and neighbors with your culinary skills, let’s take it back to the beginning.
Step 1: Sourcing Materials Locally
Making butcher block cutting boards worthy of MMA fighters starts with sourcing the right materials. We’ve all heard the saying, “good things take time,” which we hold true in our own process. It takes almost a year from tree selection to when the wood is actually ready to craft into cutting boards.
Once the wood is selected, the raw materials undergo air and kiln drying to carefully control moisture content to ensure we are starting with the most stable materials possible. We source the majority of our wood from Ohio Black Walnut trees that provide a surface perfect for any chop, slice, or dice.
Careful consideration is taken before the wood is cut into individual pieces for the boards. The materials are cut to rough dimensions, then planed to exact thicknesses needed.
Step 2: Glue Up
Once we have the selected pieces to the proper dimensions we place them into clamping racks and glue up the blank boards. When the glue up is dried, it is then planed off and made ready for the final stage of machining.
Step 3: Get Groovy With It
The idea behind those perfectly carved grooves and staple “hot tub”? To collect those flavorful juices of course! After step two, our carpenters use CNC routers to cut the juice grooves and bore out the "hot tub" so you can savor every last bit.
Neanderthal tip: save the juice collected from briskets or other juicey cuts to dip warm bread in as an appetizer.
When the machining is complete, we use hand routers on the outside edges and lightly sand all sides. From there, any lasering or custom engraving takes place.
Step 4: Sanding & Finishing
After we’ve quality checked the cutting board, it moves on to the sanding stage. This is a 4-step process including a wet sand stage. The board is then submerged in FDA compliant fractionated coconut oil and soaked overnight. This stage is our favorite. Immediately upon hitting the oil, the soak pulls the natural beauty, color, and character out of the wood like magic!
Finally, once the oil is absorbed, the board is wiped down and a coat of all natural Neanderthal Wood Wax is applied to preserve the integrity and longevity of the board so it’s ready for use as soon as it arrives. Before shipping, all products undergo one last quality control inspection to ensure you love your purchase. No matter if it’s a Fire Wrangler or Pizza Peel - we won’t ship it unless it exceeds our expectations!
We Craft Your Cutting Board Like It’s Our Own
A lot more goes into making and finalizing the details of your Neanderthal butcher board cutting block than what meets the eye. We take pride in what we do - because we know you deserve the best outdoor cooking products people can buy (and cook with).
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