Padauk, with its reddish orange appearance, is very dense and durable, which is why it was hand selected for use for this item. The crushing and grinding of material between the mortar and pestle would wear on most woods quickly. What better choice for a Mortar and Pestle. In addition, both items were hand turned on the lathe and then sanded by hand. The Mortar and Pestle were then finished with multiple applications of a quality, Polymerized Tung oil finish with sanding between coats. This product is also food grade safe.