Butcher block kitchen countertops, I agree, can be very beautiful. They are manufactured by gluing select strips of wood together in order to create one solid piece of wood. Butcher block countertops are available in a multitude of colors and finishes. Is it any wonder that they add a certain charm and warmth to any kitchen?
A tree, a replaceable natural resource, can be transformed into a breathtaking butcher block kitchen countertop. Jatoba, a very hardwood tree common to the Caribbean, Central and South America, is a tan/salmon color with black stripes that, in its own time, evolves into a rich red color. What a striking kitchen countertop that would make. Red maple, white oak, black walnut and cherry are some of the other varieties of wood that are used to fashion an impressive butcher block kitchen countertop. Teak and birch, which are softer and less durable woods, are usually used only for decorative designs.
Offsetting the obvious beauty of natural wood is the simple fact that wood can and does develop fissures and cracks. These cracks are a result of the wood expanding when it is wet and shrinking when it dries. However these cracks can be the source of dangerous bacteria growth, which is an absolute negative factor of wood kitchen countertops. Special precautions must be taken when preparing raw meats or uncooked poultry in order to prevent cross contamination to other foods that are eaten raw. Applying a coat of mineral/vegetable oil, lacquer or varnish should help control this problem that is very common with wood kitchen countertops. This coating should also help protect the butcher block kitchen countertop from cutting marks left by a sharp knife.
So we are dealing with the beauty of wood kitchen countertops as well as the high maintenance of wood kitchen countertops. This is a hard choice.