Your choice of worksurface has to both compliment your other kitchen finishes and to provide a practical material suitable for the many tasks involved in preparing and cooking foods.
For this reason, differing materials are often used in the same kitchen. In this article we look at some of the materials available and their advantages.
As a natural rock, Granite is both beautiful and extremely hard. It resists high temperatures, staining and water penetration. Granite is quarried worldwide with many of the most beautiful colours and textures coming from countries as far away as Norway, Brazil, Africa and India.
As a natural material, its beauty is unrivalled and unique. However, it is the uniqueness of granite that can lead to selection problems. Some colours vary in shade and grain. It is usually best to see the actual slab of granite that will be used before it is cut and fitted in your kitchen.
Quartz ( Silestone, Ceaserstone , Okite, etc )
With many of the properties of Granite, Quartz surfaces are tough, heat resistant and easily wiped clean. Their colour range is far greater and more consistant than Granite and ideal for those requiring a regulated finish. Available in large slabs, polished or honed, they make great island tops, worktops and upstands. Protection from some cleaning chemicals and thermal shock is recommended.
All timbers have different qualities, some strong, some beautifully figured and some with an oily structure which resists water. As woodworkers, we know which timbers to choose for furniture frames, doors, drawers, and for your worksurfaces.
Wood adds warmth to your kitchen and provides a hardworking surface which will gain a natural patina over many years of use. It does, of course, need protection from high temperatures,standing water, and naturally occuring stains.
Like Granite, marble is a beautiful natural stone. Due to its softer and porous nature, it needs protection from heavy wear and staining, it is however often lower cost than granite. It can be used in the kitchen as long as clients are aware that it is porous and will scratch and stain and will develop a patina and show signs of use.
Glass is a non-porous material which is available in a myriad of colours and textures. It is toughened for safety reasons and can be cut to size and shape extremely accurately. Although easy to clean, it will scratch, and for that reason we recommend its use for bar-tops or splashbacks.
For an industrial look, stainless steel is unbeatable. No wonder top Chefs insist on its use for their restaurant kitchens. It is tough, heat resistant and resists stains.
Stainless Steel can be smoothly formed into sink bowls and upstands and blends in beautifully with many of today’s top kitchen appliances. It is not suitable for cutting or chopping and is more difficult to maintain than Granite or Quartz.
The material you decide to use in your bespoke kitchen is entirely up to you. We can of course suggest the best material to suit your requirements and budget. Why not contact us for a free design consultation and tell us how you would like your surfaces to balance with the overall vision of your bespoke kitchen.