Living in a space-challenged New York City apartment, I just don’t have room for a great big kitchen island, much as I would love one. So I was intrigued by a stylish new line of hardwood kitchen worktables from March, the San Francisco-based home furnishings store. When Sam Hamilton, the owner of March, says, “By combining the lines and the lightness of a kitchen table with tools and storage, our worktables present an alternative to the monolithic kitchen island,” she’s got my full attention.
The three-model line was developed in collaboration with Matt Bear of Union Studio, a boutique Bay Area woodworking company that designs and produces furniture and environments using mostly locally sourced American species like Black Walnut, Ash, and, in the case of the worktables, White Oak. When treated correctly, White Oak is suitable for use in a moist kitchen environment, since its closed cellular structure make it water- and rot-resistant. (These characteristics are why White Oak is commonly used in boatbuilding and for barrels in wine and whiskey production.)
The worktables have a hand-rubbed oil finish that exploits the natural beauty of White Oak’s tight, straight grain and warm, toasty color. The look of the oak is further enhanced by the designer’s careful choice of complementary materials and accessories—a spectrum of tones and textures that set off the wood beautifully and make the tables as handsome as they are functional.
Each model offers a distinct take on the classic kitchen table, a piece of wood furniture that’s not only a useful and versatile household item but also a powerful symbol of hearth and home and a primary place of family gathering. As Sam Hamilton puts it, “The design elements of all three styles work well in traditional and contemporary kitchens as well as open plan living spaces.”
The Turned Leg Table, with its gleaming enamel paint and early-American vibe, would look right at home in a 19th century kitchen. The Work Table, which sits on a patinated-steel base, has a sophisticated industrial feel that would be just right for a loft or urban setting. And the clean-lined Parsons Table, based on the iconic 1930’s design by Jean-Michel Frank, is at once completely modern and completely timeless.
Above all, these are working tables, and their tops are available in a variety of materials and thicknesses: a solid slab of Carrara marble in a honed finish; solid White Oak planks; or solid White Oak butcher block up to seven inches thick—as the company says, “resistant to nicks and gentle on knives, the beautiful end grain tells the story of the tree and is prized for its density and stone-like finish”—truly the ultimate kitchen workhorse.
3075 Sacramento Street
San Francisco, CA 94115