A Lot Of Livin' In This Kitchen
The best cook I know lives in this kitchen. I wanted to show you some pictures because it has some interesting features. Also, she is thinking about a facelift, so I'm interested in any ideas you all might have.
The kitchen is a little complicated, so I'll explain the layout via some pictures.
Looking west, from the dining room. On the left of the picture, beyond the photo's edge, is a desk and full-height glass-front stemware cabinet. On the left part of the photo, you see the kitchen's seating area, used for breakfast, small meals, and hanging out. In the middle, at the far (west) end of the kitchen, is a door to the backyard (not visible), the refrigerator, and the commercial Wolf six-burner range. To the right of that is a sink, an old Wedgewood range with four burners, griddle, two ovens, and two broilers, and the butcher block on casters. To the far right, just beyond the photo's edge, is another sink and an ''L'' of counter.
This is the seating area, surrounded by windows and cookbook shelves. This is a possible use for those low windows out there.
This is looking east, standing in front of the Wedgewood range and looking back toward the dining room. You see the eating area, desk, stemware cabinet, and part of the counter ''L'' with (out of view) the second sink and dishwasher.
Detail of the Wedgewood range, butcher block, and first sink.
West end of the kitchen with refrigerator and Wolf range. Door to the backyard is to the left of the refrigerator.
Detail of the second sink area, this is facing north-east. All of the uppers are glass-fronted.
The stub of wall between the backyard door and the eating area is used for hanging pot storage. The cookbook shelves wrap around to this wall. Her pots are mostly French copper and old All-Clad. I did some copper polishing on this visit, after taking this picture.
So that's the kitchen. She is thinking about replacing the tile counters with butcher block, replacing the square tile backsplash with white subways, and getting some new sinks, including one deep enough for her stockpots. She is happy with her appliances and cabinets. The budget doesn't extend to major work anyway.
I suggested undercabinet lighting for all the uppers, wall mounting the faucets, adding a sprayer at the wash-up sink. Her counters are 36.5'' high, she and her husband are fairly tall. I was thinking that raising the counters 1.5'' could allow pull-out bread boards. She'll sometimes wish for more counterspace (yes, I know, she's not really wanting for same).
Some context. This is in a modest house in Los Angeles. They are big-hearted, gregarious, unassuming Boston Irish Jewish transplants. She entertains frequently, dinner parties 1-2x week, sometimes large ones. Given the climate, some of their cooking is done outdoors, where there is a smoker, grill, refrigerator, and four-burner Jade range. My friends are in their early 70's, act like they're in their 50's, have a zillion friends, kids both natural and defacto (SWMBO is one of the latter), and are longtime foodies. As I've mentioned, she is the best cook I know, but her son went to culinary school and dinners are often a multi-cook affair. Her decorating style is sort of antique-y clutter, but every piece has a story.
I hope these pictures were interesting, and if you have ideas for her facelift, can you suggest them?