A gourmet kitchen is a kitchen that focuses on the love of food and cooking. The home chef who enjoys cooking with the best ingredients and equipment thrives in this type of environment. It's a kitchen that meets the needs of the cook as well as expresses his or her style. Some elements to consider when planning such a kitchen include appliances and tools, sinks, walls, countertops and floors.
Hardwood or laminate flooring extended from the rest of the home into the gourmet kitchen can provide a very clean and contemporary look. The hardwood should be sealed, since water spills in kitchens can ruin the wood. Linoleum flooring is still popular in kitchens, as it's durable and long-lasting. Tile, stone and bamboo flooring choices are great for an exotic-looking kitchen.
Countertops should reflect the style of the gourmet as well as be a good match for what they'll be used for. Stainless steel counters are perfect for the contemporary cook who loves the industrial look of metal counters, but stainless steel should only be used on non-chopping areas. Stone countertops such as granite are expensive, but considered top-notch in a gourmet kitchen. Modern stone-look laminate countertops are popular and realistic looking, but may scratch and burn easily.
Wall color sets the mood in any kitchen. Warm colors such as terra cotta or red can help create a feeling of warmth, while cool colors such as gray or blue can give the feeling of efficiency. Thought should be given to the type of paint used as well. Acrylic paint is easy to wash clean and is usually a good choice for a kitchen that gets a lot of use.
Kitchen sinks are available in many materials today such as cast iron, copper and stone. The sink in a gourmet kitchen should coordinate well with the countertops and flooring to keep the overall flow of the cook's style going. Cooks who use a lot of water by the stove, to boil large amounts of water for cooking pasta, for example, may want to consider having a faucet installed near the stove.
Gourmet kitchens usually have top of the line appliances. Appliance features should be more than just attractive, but should be practical for the cook. For example, a range with a warming drawer under the oven with adjustable racks is ideal for the cook who prepares many dishes at once. The kitchen should have designated storage places for top quality equipment the cook uses, such as a good stock pot.