New kitchens gleam like new cars, full of promise and shiny-clean metal. Nothing wrong with that. We have a somewhat older kitchen, and I find myself alternately thinking a new one would be nice vs. pondering the charm of incredibly old-style rudimentary kitchens... places where you could crack a coconut without fear of denting something.
That nostalgia, which I'm not saying is necessarily practical for the way we do things in modern life, comes from two places... one, seeing this old kitchen setup at TempleOfThai.com, and two, seeing an Anthony Bourdain "No Reservations" segment where they ate at a Tibetan house that had something a little more polished but reminiscent of this.
What about a kitchen where you can sit down and pound things? What about a huge hearth you can sit on a stool next to peeling potatoes? I'm not saying I would alter my current kitchen to do this, but sometimes I wonder if this wouldn't be better.
Leaving out lead water pipes, rats and the like.
Chow's piece about modern hippie kitchens also contributed to the thought.