Kohler Stages Sink: review after 6 weeks of use

rjr220June 12, 2010

There have been some threads here regarding the Kohler Stages sink -- I saw it while planning my kitchen and knew that it was the sink I wanted -- and in a way, planned part of my kitchen around it. I've been using it now for about 6 weeks, and thought I would post my experience thus far with it. I chose the 45 inch version, and installed the Grohe K4 in the middle of the basin part of the sink.

The sink comes with a wood cutting board, a large plastic tray/cutting board, a smaller tray/cutting board, 6 porcelain prep bowls, and an accessory rack that hooks on the shallow end of the sink. The accessory rack is meant to hold the plastic cutting boards/trays and the prep bowls. It will not hold the wood cutting board. I chose not to install the rack, but instead put a drawer beneath the shallow end of the sink to hold knives (it's the "anything that cuts" drawer); and a pull-out garbage below that drawer. I store the cutting boards upright below the sink, in a small divider that I got from BB&B.

In order to get the drawer under the shallow end of the shelf, the left side of the drawer had to be shaved down a bit, and a notch put in the back of the drawer to allow for the hook that was meant to hold the accessory shelf.

As I said above, the wood cutting board is large and heavy. If you get this sink -- whether or not you choose to use the accessory tray, you need to plan on where to store this. Under the sink is working fine for me. But, be aware, it weighs 12.5 pounds! It is a lovely board, though, and I put the beeswax/mineral oil on it that I use on my soapstone.

The Grohe K4 is perfect for the sink. The hose reaches to the far corner of the shallow end, and the water goes right into the drain. It does splash, but that has something to do with the insinkerator cover, not the sink or the faucet. I love the K4!

As others have mentioned, the deep sink is marvelous. I am short, and worried about having to bend over and reach in, but that hasn't been a problem. The sink is deep enough to hide dirty dishes in when the DW isn't available.

I also like the size of the deep basin, along with the shallower "prep" end. I hand wash pots and pans in a dishpan, put them on the in-sink rack, rinse, and then put them up on the shallow end of the sink until the kids FINALLY come to dry them.

I also like the shallow end to help separate the "clean dirty" and contaminated dirty items. For example, if I cut up meat, I put the knife in the deep end of the sink. If I have something that I've used, but may want to use it again, but it isn't contaminated, I'll put it on the shallow side of the sink. Kind of like what you do when you have 2 basins.

I don't have 2 sinks, so this sink is my prep and clean up sink. It is large enough so that I can be prepping at one end, and my kids/husband washing at the other. The cutting boards fitting neatly into the sink and extending the counter is really handy. I am short, so what I really like is that a cutting board is no higher than the counter. I'm not so crazy about the porcelain prep bowls that come with the sink -- I wish they were plastic and not as heavy, and a bit shorter. In the video they show fitting the prep bowls into the large tray --what I do is use the wood cutting board and slide it partially over the sink. I put the prep bowls on the shallow prep end of the sink, and then scoop the items into the bowls. Like this, except in this example I'm making salad and just put the salad bowls on the sink:

I also just cut and slide cut items directly into the pan I'm using -- here I'm making a roasted tomato soup and just shoved the onions into the roast pan

In the background of the above picture you can see a white prep dish with cherry tomatoes. Those prep dishes are a perfect size to put on the shelf while I'm prepping and sliding the items.

The sink itself has zero radius corners on the ends of the sink, but the bottom front and back are rounded, more like a traditional sink. It's been easy to clean, I just spray the sink and the rack down at night with a cleaner, and then take the rack out, wipe down the sink, and then put the rack in, wipe it down and rinse it all. The corners don't gather any junk.

So, is the sink worth the hype? I like the design, I am using it like the designers intended -- I've just personalized it a bit. I reach for my prep bowls and salad bowls before their prep bowls. I think the accessory tray isn't worth the space it requires -- the drawer and garbage space was better use to me. But, I am very happy with the sink, and would definately get it again.

Hope this is helpful to anyone thinking of getting the Stages.

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Thank you rjr... Would love to order this sink...just trying to figure out a space for it. Your report was great!!! Thank you for taking the time to give us all a personal review..very helpful!!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2010 at 6:58PM
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I wish I had the space. I see they have a smaller version but I don't think that makes a very useful sink because the bowl seems so small.

Lucky you!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2010 at 12:00AM
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Love this sink...wish I'd seen it sooner and had a bigger budget! It's lovely!!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2010 at 12:45AM
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Thank you for the review. It's especially reassuring to know that the sink is easy to keep clean.

I just found out that our sink is taking longer than expected to arrive, and we have had to push back countertop installation by a week. I hope we like ours as much as you seem to like yours, once it is finally installed!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2010 at 9:44AM
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To RJR220- I would love to see photos of your sink and faucet combination. Still not sure how to navigate this site.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 10:15PM
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Wanda -- just saw your posting from a week ago. Below is a link to my unfinished kitchen, which has some pictures of the sink/faucet combo -- and then, if you click on the finished kitchen, there are a few more.

I'm still loving the combo and have been very happy with both!

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 12:35PM
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I am nearing the end of what has been 20 months out of our house and a simple remodel/addition that turned into a complete gut. I love your sink, and I am installing this sink in my kitchen island. In your opinion, is one faucet sufficient (Kohler site shows it with 2 on the 45" Stages)? I am considering the Blanco Master Gourmet for my faucet (it has a faucet and separate spray). Would you mount it centered on the basin or centered on the entire sink? Also, I am considering soapstone countertops. How do you like them and did you install yourself?

    Bookmark   May 13, 2011 at 10:02AM
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I would love to hear/see updates from rjr220, eastbaymom, insaneinflorida and anyone else who has installed this Kohler Stages 45 sink. How is the finish holding up in terms of scratches, waterspots, etc? Do you use the bottom grid? Does it drain well. Would you buy it again?

    Bookmark   November 4, 2011 at 3:18PM
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I was just saying to my kids today how happy I am with the Kohler 45 stages sink. I really love it. Spent a lot of time researching the product and I have to say, I wish I would've gone with my gut instinct and saved myself months of 'study'. The bottom grid might be my favorite thing, that and the size. I have no scratches on the bottom of the sink, only on the shelf part, where things land, like pots, pans, etc. I would buy it again and recommend it. I used to keep the cutting board in place all the time, now I store it underneath, I like having the whole sink available for hiding dirty dishes! anyway, it was a wise choice, for whatever it's worth!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2011 at 9:37PM
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Sorry -- just getting back on GW after being off for awhile. Started a doctoral program that seems to be taking up most of my time! But, since I'm in the middle of a big paper, I thought it would be a great time to surf on over to my favorite website . . . . .

I still do love my Stages sink. Every single bit. I do use the bottom rack. I bought a bunch of extra pads that go on the feet of the rack, because a couple began wearing through. My husband was not a rack fan before the sink, but sees the benefit now (especially since he's spending more time in the kitchen -- I hear him cleaning up now!).

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 9:52PM
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I am considering the same setup as rjr220 (removing the rack and notching into the drawer above the pull out garbage). rjr220, I would like to know what size cabinet the Kohler Stages sink is in. BTW, the pictures are fabulous - they will be extremely helpful when I explain it to my contractor! Thanks.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2014 at 8:58PM
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I'm considering a similar sink made by Ticor.

What I'm wondering about is this- I'm not allowed to have a dishwasher in my co-op. I have very limited counter space and I'm extending the kitchen into the LR by building a peninsula, but there's a limit to how big I can go and still have a living room. Would I be better off with a single depth sink that has the recessed rim for the cutting board, etc?

I'm just wondering if I need to clean a big pan, will the shallow prep end of the sink be more of a hinderance than a help?

Here is a link that might be useful: Ticor Sink

    Bookmark   September 21, 2014 at 1:39PM
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