Granite’s vivid natural color palette and near diamond-hard surface makes it the ideal material for countertops.
Resists heat, scratches and stains. Protects against mold and mildew. Offers a near endless variety of different patterns of veins, specks and swirls. Granite slab viewing and selection available in select areas at our supplier’s off-site location
Granite Countertops for the Kitchen
Durable and dependable, the granite countertop is a top choice for a wide variety of kitchens.
Perhaps the all-star of kitchen countertops, granite surfaces are versatile, durable and a natural fit in many kitchen areas. Although considered a high-end surface choice, a granite countertop will last for years to come and require little maintenance.
Granite countertops are available in a variety of colors, ranging from white and cream to deep gray and forest green. Visit a home or kitchen design store and look through their selection of guides and samples to determine the color that will work best in your kitchen area. Ask if they allow customers to purchase or borrow samples so that you can take a few home and hold them next to your kitchen cabinetry.
One way to reduce the cost of a granite countertop is by purchasing your choice through a wholesaler. These companies will often charge a customer less than a home improvement store for the cost of installment and materials. If you are interested in a warranty to protect against damage, then it is important to ask these companies about what they will be able to provide in terms of insurance.
Granite can be easily cleaned with a mild soap and soft cloth, making the maintenance process an easy one.
What is it? An igneous rock (formed by the cooling and solidifying of molten materials) composed chiefly of quartz and feldspar, granite is one of the hardest surfaces on earth. Because of the considerable variation, it’s wise to visit the stone yard to choose your own piece if possible to avoid surprises.
Considerations When Choosing Granite Countertops
Thickness, Overhangs and Edges. Countertop thickness varies by geographic location, from a three quarter inch to an inch and a quarter inches (preferred). Thicker slabs cost more. Standard overhang is one inch to an inch and a half. Larger overhangs—for workspace or seating—may require additional support starting at 8 to 12 inches. A range of edge treatments is available, including straight, beveled and rounded.
Forms. Granite counters can come as slabs or tiles.
Slabs. Granite slabs offer a solid and seamless look. These typically come in 10-foot-long pieces. If your counter is quite long or L-shaped, curved or arched, a seam will be required—but should not be too noticeable if done properly.
Tiles. If you love granite but it’s not in your budget, consider tiles. While they require a bit more maintenance, granite tiles cost less than slab and also offer more installation flexibility.
Finishes. Three types of finishes are recommended for granite countertops.
Polished. This smooth, reflective surface draws out the color and texture for a rich look. It’s the least porous finish option, which is great for spills. But the shiny surface also accents any imperfections (and crumbs). Polished is the most popular, perhaps due in part to ease of cleaning.
Honed. While still smooth, this finish is not shiny and reflective. Though a honed finish doesn’t bring out the color as much, it does cut down on glare and mask imperfections. The surface is slightly more porous.
Leather. This finish, created when fabricators move diamond-tipped brushes across the surface, conveys the look and feel of textured leather.Like a polished surface, it is less porous and highlights the color; like a honed surface, it disguises crumbs and streaks.
Maintenance. Wipe the countertop with a soft cloth and warm water daily. Mild household cleansers are suitable. Certain oils and acids can stain. Most natural granite should be resealed annually.
The Bottom Line. Granite imparts a timeless, high-end look ideal for traditional and classic spaces. Smooth and cool to the touch, it is popular for baking centers due to the ease of rolling out dough.