We Love This Clean, Hyper-Functional Kitchen
With multiple refrigerators and ovens—and two islands!—this space easily accommodates a couple of cooks and their guests.
The backstory: Birkholz Homes designed and built this home; the homeowners worked with cabinetmaker Andrew Hibbs of Wood to customize their kitchen cabinetry.
At a Glance
Who lives here: Stormy and Jeff Sopp and son Smith
Size: 194 square feet
The layout: Stormy Sopp of Duo Design Studios and her husband, Jeff, use their kitchen for entertaining and baking, and find that double islands make the perfect setup. One person can prep a meal at the island near the stove, while the other entertains guests at the second island, which doubles as an eating spot and beverage bar.
The cabinets: A high-gloss white lacquer finish brings a modern look to the space, while flat-cut walnut for the side panels and accent strips provides warmth. The homeowners wanted the kitchen to look “as clean as possible,” says Hibbs, so much of the cabinetry along the wall lacks handles. A hidden electronic system allows the owners to open the cabinetry with barely a touch.
To the right side, the sliding barn door, also in walnut, leads to a powder room, a mudroom and the door to the garage. The clients preferred to keep the area around the range hood free of upper cabinetry, and chose to accent that area with a backsplash that has a glimmering finish.
Hidden amid the wall of white are the refrigerator and freezer. The tall white panel farthest to the left hides the refrigerator; below it are two refrigerator drawers. The middle of the centre bay opens up to reveal a rollout tray, designed to contain toasters or blenders. “My husband makes a shake in the morning,” Stormy says. Below the blender garage are two freezer drawers where the clients can stash frozen fruit and other smoothie ingredients. A separate butler’s pantry (not pictured) houses a full-size refrigerator where the family can store large cuts of meats.
The upper oven on this wall is a convection steam oven, the lower one is a standard oven, and a second standard oven is located beneath the cooktop on the range wall. “At Christmastime, it’s great,” Stormy says. “You can put a ham or a roast or prime rib in one oven, and side dishes in the other.” Multiple ovens also come in handy for her large-batch baking sessions.
The islands: The countertop for both the working island, where the sink lives, and the entertaining island, where the beverage refrigerator lives, are made from white quartz. The wood of each island is walnut with a clear matte lacquer finish, with the separate pieces carefully matched so that the grain lines up.
The chandelier over the dining table is not a single piece, but rather “a series of pendants you cluster in whatever way you want,” says Nadine Halliday, who does sales and project management at Birkholz Homes.