Saturday, April 27, 2013

BlogTourNOLA - Poggenpohl Cabinetry & Étouffée

BlogTour New Orleans and KBIS 203 have come and gone and I'm left with 1000's of photos, a pile of press releases, and a few extra pounds strapped around my waist thanks to the hospitality of the Big Easy and the amazing sponsors who helped put BlogTour together.

One of our first gatherings was at the Nordic Kitchen Designs showroom in Metairie, Louisiana. The evening was put on by BlogTour sponsors Poggenpohl, Blanco and Silestone (more on the last two in future posts) and presented me with the opportunity to explore how another firm in another market shows off its product lines.  

I learned two very important things that evening: 1) I love étouffée, and 2) my design approach of keeping the cabinetry simple and letting the materials add texture was alive and well with New Orleans kitchen design. Those two thoughts aren't as different as you think when you consider a great étouffée is really all about creating a base with a really great roux and adding texture and flavour with shrimp, crawfish and vegetables. It's about starting with a solid foundation and adding to it for flavour.

I could find no better example of that than this stunning book-matched walnut backsplash. It's finished in polyurethane so it will stay pristine with minimal maintenance. But it serves a function and if its didn't do that to begin with, the beauty of the veneer would be pointless.  You'll also notice the strip of electrical outlets along the bottom edge of the splash. The location serves to keep the outlets in a convenient spot while not spoiling the beauty of whatever wall treatment is chosen for the splash.

The simplicity of Poggenpohl's lines (like their new +EDITION line) were evident throughout the showroom. Simple door profiles treated with veneers, adorned with minimal hardware.  Very modern but extremely elegant. And lest you fear quality is lost in all of this, after 120 years of making cabinetry Poggenpohl is as committed to quality construction as ever.

Aesthetics in design is important to be sure, but as I've often said on Useful Spaces, if a kitchen doesn't function well it's just a bunch of pretty boxes. The truth is Poggenpohl does an amazing job with accessories. Roll out shelves, drawer organizers and my personal favourite, the plastic wrap dispenser all feed upon the idea that everything has its place and the kitchen becomes more efficient when we know where things are when we need them.

We finished the evening gathered around an island display; a group of designers from around the world discussing our industry and suppliers we work with who truly understand how to work with us as we endeavour to deliver beautiful functionality to our clients.  Poggenpohl is clearly one of these suppliers.

My participation in BlogTour New Orleans has been made possible by the generous support of the sponsors, and while I will be sharing their stories with you, the views expressed are all my own.

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