Matching new birch to old maple
We are looking to have hardwoods installed in our kitchen, which flows with the dining room (we opened up a wall). The DR (and the rest of the house) has maple hardwoods, installed when the house was built in 1952. We had a floor guy come out and he suggested using birch, rather than maple, in the kitchen -- he said "new" maple is much whiter than our 1950s version, which is very yellow. He thinks birch would match the old maple better. Has anyone had any experience with new birch vs. old maple? Or even experience with trying to match new hardwoods to old?
Side question: Any thoughts on how well birch would do as a kitchen floor? I know (or think) it's softer than maple, but don't know if it's so soft that it would be a problem. The kitchen sees a lot of traffic (we enter there from the garage) and we have two small children.