marble vs. granite counterop

cecilBApril 23, 2012

Can anyone give pro's and cons of marble countertop - especially someone who has experience with marble?

I am getting ready to decide and the only thing anyone has to say is, "you don't want stains" - Ok. But I DO want marble...and they use it in fudge making places, and ice-cream parlors - you know, mix-ins on the marble slab. I love the way it looks a lot more than the way granite looks, too.

I do a lot of baking - pastries, etc. As well as all the other cooking stuff that goes along with a large fam. and I would like an island with only a marble top for these purposes. HELP!



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I was facing a similar dilemma and a designer told me to check out a granite called Pearl White. In the photo I saw, it looks like Carrera Marble (white with gray veining). Might be something to look into.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 3:32PM
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Hi Cecelia,

There are tons of marble owners/lovers on GW. If you scroll to the bottom of the Kitchens forum and type marble, marble staining, marble etching, etc. into the search box, you'll find tons of information/experience.

I have Vermont Danby Olympian White countertops throughout my whole kitchen. including a slab of it as the backsplash behind my range. Not a great pic of my stove area below, but you get the idea.

I went with Danby b/c it's whiter than the Carreras and Calacattas that were available when I chose my slab, and because Vermont Danby marbles are less porous and therefore less prone to staining. Martha Stewart used it in the kitchen of one of her residences, which is how I first learned about it.

I think you'll find, overall, that the marble lovers on GW have well-sealed countertops (many of us have used Porous Plus 511), and don't find staining a problem (as long as you wipe up the big offenders like red wine within a reasonable amount of time).

Etching, however, is not prevented by sealers, and will occur (an instant chemical reaction) when acidic substances touch your marble. This includes things like tomato, lemon juice, vinegar, etc. Etching is a change in the sheen/surface of the marble, which appears as a whiter mark, blotch, etc. It's much more visible in bright sunlight.

Scratching can also be an issue, as can chipping especially on the edges of the counters.

I have a few scratches, and a few etches, I know I'll get many more, and they don't bother me. I think most others have this same attitude. I do try to be a reasonably neat cook, though, and don't put lemons, tomatoes, etc directly on the marble. I usually have a large kitchen towel under my cutting board when I'm involved in a big cooking project.

I have no stains, and just 1 tiny chip on the edge of my counter where I hit a mug against the counter while loading the DW.

Good luck with your decision!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 3:32PM
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Well as long as you are okay with potential staining and etching go for it. A lot of people use it and love it and think of the marks as characters. There are some that would not like that and avoid.
And then some that compromise and use quartzite or a whiter granite. What are using on the perimeter.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 3:53PM
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Well, I love marble, so I got it. 9 months later...still love it. No stains, a few etches. No big lovely and makes me happy every time I look at it. I put a "white" granite in dd's bath and guest bath. It does not look like my marble and does not make me particularly happy when I look at it.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 4:30PM
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You can do marble if that is really what you love. But just know what you're signing up for. Get some samples so you can see etches and potential staining (easily prevented with a good sealer) in person, then decide if it's for you. I love the look a marble, too. In the end, went with the best look-alike I found.
Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: Finished kitchen

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 8:12AM
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Sounds like you want to be talked into it! Just for the other view-- despite my love of marble, we went for a dark granite (American Black, just like Jet Mist but from PA not VA). Rationale: I did not want to add a source of anxiety/nagging, and was not sure I would manage to accept etching and potential stains gracefully. Also wanted to reduce use of chemicals like sealers, which are more frequent with marble than with (at least our) granite. Finally, I realized we needed some contrast in the kitchen.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 10:46AM
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Marble and granite are apples and oranges. Totally different.

There is no need to recreate yet another marble vs granite thread. 2LittleFishies did the research for you. It's all been said before. Check those threads out and decide for yourself.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 12:52PM
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