We’ve recently installed a beautiful hardwood island for a client. Woods in kitchens look stunning and are lovely to work on, but do require quite a bit of maintenance. This client was hesitant about having such a volatile material in the kitchen, which is why we’ve limited it to a small wooden island, which stands out as a feature and softens and contrasts with all the high gloss surfaces. It’s not difficult to maintain, but does involve frequent oilings in the first year.
Hardwood worktops must be thoroughly treated with at least three coats of protective wood oil, to all sides (including the underside), prior to installation. Most reputable companies do this, but it’s always worth checking. It is also beneficial to apply as many coats as possible to the end-grain of the worktops as this is the area which will absorb the most moisture. An extra three to four coats should also be applied around tapholes, sink cutouts and areas of heavy use or exposure.