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Compass O a sis FLOOR FORTÉ Aged wine and spirits barrels contain some of the most beautiful and highly prized woods. Unfortunately, the curved nature of the planks used to mean that beauty could never be used on floors and walls. Until now. TEXT BY SANDY LINDSEY Soleras is a new and unconventional collection of tiles that reproduces the exquisite appeal of the highly sought-after wooden staves from barrels used for “Criaderas y Soleras,” the prized technique for ageing the most prestigious wines and spirits such as sherry, madeira and brandy. This collection takes porcelain from mere imitation of wood to true artistry, proving how technology and aesthetic research can create eye-catching solutions. These full-body colored porcelain masterpieces reproduce both the wood grain and the fascinating markings left when liquids stand for a long time in barrels. They are lower maintenance and more durable than actual wood and can be used in residential and even high-traffic commercial floors and walls. Best of all, these 8” x 67” porcelain slabs, which are manufactured in Italy, are strong, flexible and auto-leveling for easy laying; IberiaTiles.com. 20