Cutting Board

Advice on cutting board / butcher block


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Cookware Cutting Board

Advice on cutting board / butcher block

tyyz | | Aug 24, 2010 07:55 PM

I've decided it's time to upgrade to a nice cutting board/butcher block that should (hopefully) last me a lifetime - I'm referring to the pieces of wood you put on your kitchen counter (not the ones with legs that are a stand-alone piece of furniture). I've done some research, and thought I'd get the advice of experts here. I've already read through several threads on this topic on this site, so hopefully this isn't already addressed elsewhere.

Based on what I've read, it seems clear that end-grain is the way to go, and I'm prepared to spend ~$200 for a nice board.

Reversible vs. non-reversible:
It seems that some boards are reversible, while others have little feet attached, which means they can only be used on one side. My initial thought is that reversible is better, as if something goes horribly wrong, I should still be able to use the other side. However, I've read that the feet prevent sliding and help air circulation, so that moisture doesn't accumulate on the under-side of the board. Is one generally better than the other, or is it just personal preference? The one I'm using now doesn't have any feet, and I've never experienced any issues with sliding.

Thicker seems to be better, however, I'm not that tall, and having a 4" thick board on my counter would make cutting uncomfortably high (I've tested it out). I'm thinking 2 - 2.5" is the maximum thickness I could manage, given my current kitchen setup. Is it worth investing in an expensive board of this thickness?

Wood type:
Is maple really the way to go? I love the look of walnut, which is not quite as hard. Is walnut a good choice if I'm looking for something that will last a long time? I don't mind paying extra for walnut, but not if it's not as functional as maple. Cherry also looks nice, but appears to be softer than walnut.

Any thoughts on the quality of John Boos boards, compared with some of the smaller companies? I'd prefer to support the smaller makers, but don't want to end up with something that falls apart after a few years!

Thanks in advance!