I have granite. Takes hot pots and sharp knives and looks brand new after
3 years. Cleans up with mild soap or 50/50 mix of alcohol and water (for
extra shine). And it looks gorgeous - totally unique, a natural beauty.
Love it, love it, love it!
Another option is soap stone. It is a traditional counter top material
in this country going way back. There was a soap stone quary in
Vermont that supplied soap stone counter tops and sinks for a 100
years or more. Don't know whay it closed down but it has recently been
reopened. A lot of it comes from Brazil (I think) now.
Cost is a deciding factor for many, both for the material and cost of
installation. Style is another. Utility is a third, which includes
both the use and upkeep of a surface. I note from the "official" web
site that Corian is warranteed for 10 yrs, and that while it can take
some "brief" heat, a trivet is recommended, so when you grab that pot
of boiling (over) caramel off the stove and set it down, you may have
a problem. The same is probably true of Formica -- I have experience
only with older versions, which also scratch easily. I think stone
would be lovely, but have no experience with it. I have unglazed
quarry tile which has been in place for almost 25 years, hasn't
stained or chipped, and is unaffected by any heat it's been subject
I would get granite. If you check the price of corian you'll see that there
is not a great deal of difference in the price of the two. Granite looks
much richer, and always keep in mind the resale value of your home someday.
As I recall, darker grained granite is a bit harder than lighter ones.
Also, something to consider is a large tile installation rather . I
used 18.0"sq granite tiles with the whole tile along the front. I had
the front edges bullnosed. I also used very small grout lines with
matching grout. Came out very cool. In the regards to "Chief's"
repetitive replys about chipping...it's easy to repair in this
Yes, and yes. There are hundreds of different stones sold as "granite"
with widely varying properties. In fact, many (maybe even most) aren't
geologically granite at all, but other kinds of rock. Now, this isn't
necessarily a bad thing, since many of the non-granite "granites" are
superior for kitchen-type use.
Broadly speaking, the best stones are non-reactive, non-porous, and
free of defects such as cracks. For a vast array of (somewhat poorly
organized) information on the subject, check out
under the section Images/Advice for Buyers.
I went and picked out my own slab. It happened to be from Alaska
and cost-wise was on the high end of granite, but I don't regret it
because it is very unique. It is non-patterned with some shiny, natural
specks in it. It is light in color--grayish. I can even see fossils in
it--have a green tinge to them! The closest I can find to it is
The azul Aran looks very much like it (1st picture) double click
to see a larger picture. There are several sights that came up with
a google search for granite, stone finder, etc. I'll leave that there,
but I remembered the name
http://www.igmcorp.com/images/Azul%20Imperial.htm I picked
out a slab that had more of the fossilization in it. Now that I
looked, again, it's the same as the one above.
I have had nothing but wonderful comments about it and I absolutely love
it. Even the installers said they had never installed it before and were
amazed at how great it looked. They said they would have been afraid
to choose it. Many people stick with the closer designs like Uba Tuba
and black. I couldn't be happier with my choice. I wouldn't have
anything else, but your taste may be completely different--that's what
makes the world go around. If I were you, I'd shop at several different
places to get a feel for what you like.
I do have a question on the proper way to clean it even though it looks
and feels like the day I bought it over a year ago, now. I have been
cleaning it with just vinegar and water after trying a granite cleaner
for a short time. It's a shiny as ever, but I'm wondering if I should
re-seal it once in a while. I just found this group, again, recently,
and will read up in here and I'm sure I'll find my answer. Good luck
with your choice. You won't be sorry you chose granite.
Memory was given to mortals so that they might
have roses in December.
If you can see fossils in it then it isn't granite. Granite was formed in a
molten state (igneous rock) so any fossils would have been destroyed. So either
you don't have granite or you're not seeing fossils. Looking at the pictures
it's hard to see if there are fossils(little shells, ferns etc.)--looks like
plain old granite. Nice color, too.
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