In 2014, I had the privilege of building a set of cutting board for a restaurant on Greenwich Avenue, in West Village, New York, Monument Lane. It was the first time a product would be used in a commercial setting, something I was both excited for and nervous about, specifically that wood boards just can’t hold up to industrial dishwashers. In talking with the owner, I was confident they understood how to care for a sold wood board.
Six boards were ordered, an I used all clear hardwoods with closed grain: walnut, maple and cherry. Switching from one-off builds to small scale production was a lot more effective than I had been prior, something I’ve carried over: if you’re going to make one, make two… at least.
Finish was the same blend I use for all my boards: mineral oil and paraffin wax. I keep the beeswax out now because of concerns some have raised about keeping cookware vegan. Paraffin and mineral oil won’t go rancid and provide more than enough protection for a cutting board if they are cared for. Using a heat gun or hair dryer can help drive the oil into the wood.
Don’t ever put a board in the dishwasher. Most of the time they wash up perfectly with warm water and a damp rag; small amounts of soap can be used. Every six months or so, a coat of mineral oil with a dry cloth will keep a hardwood cutting board in shape for a lifetime.
Creeping on Monument Lane’s Instagram, I was absolutely thrilled to see these still in circulation after more than a year of use!