Porch House Kitchen // The End-Grain Butcher block


As I mentioned last week, I love the look and feel of natural materials in a kitchen.  Not only do they seem more historically-appropriate in old homes, but natural elements add warmth, character, and a timeless appeal that you just can't get with the man-made stuff. Especially butcher block.

When it came time to pick out the Porch House kitchen countertops, I knew right away that I wanted to use wood on the island.  Garrett and I went back and forth with whether to go with something basic and fairly inexpensive (like a classic-edge grain butcher block) or splurge on a custom design.  In the end, this was for TV (the pilot of our HGTV show, Master Plan) so we decided to go all out and splurge on our dream butcher block.


The white oak, end-grain butcher block on the Porch House's kitchen island is a custom design we did with Hardwood Industries, my brother-in-law's family business.  You may remember that Uncle Dougie always provides flooring and/or butcher block for our renovations (like at the Bryant House, Ravenna House, and the Dexter House) and this renovation was no different. Once Garrett talked me into splurging on the kitchen island, I immediately called Doug to start the design process.  Over a few days and a dozen or so emails, Doug and I settled on a 2 1/2"-thick butcher block in an end-grain pattern (which is reminiscent of a real butcher's cutting block) in white oak to match the floors.

Over the following weeks, the butcherblock was crafted by Juan, a long-time employee at Hardwood Industries.  I can't imagine how many hours he put into this piece - cutting, gluing, and sanding it over and over again - but when he finished, it weighted more than 250lbs and was pure beauty.


With such a short timeline to complete this kitchen renovation (the 16-day schedule was set by the producers of our HGTV pilot), we didn't get a finish on the butcher block before we had to film the reveal.  But we will eventually seal it with a food grade wax before we put the house on the market.

Thank you to the talented folks at Hardwood Industries for making such a stunning addition to the kitchen (and for giving us the family discount ;)!



p.s. more about butcherblocks