Oak barrels are increasingly seen in pubs and hotels, as a visual reminder of bygone days when beer, wine and spirits were commonly supplied in oak barrels. Sometimes they simply stand alone as a large visual statement or barrier. In other places they are cleverly turned into tables or chairs, or something to lean against as the evening progresses!
I love the imaginative use of old oak barrels to create in one setting, a sense of history, and in another a modern twist on a traditional theme. So, barrels and casks can look equally at home in Ye Olde Tavern, as well as pride of place in the latest snappy wine bar or trendy hang out.