Cooking is no longer pigeonholed as feminine and is now looked at as a macho task, and guys are increasingly shaping kitchen designs.
Here’s what the manly kitchen looks like
MY HUSBAND IS a talented grill master and loves to work in the kitchen to make his meat rubs and unique chilis. He’s also 6-2” feet tall, he has often mentioned how nice taller counters would be, he would love elevated counter tops at 39” which is 2 inches higher than standard—. He would find them ergonomic for slicing his famous smoked brisket. He also almost drools when he sees a 20,000 BTU gas cook top in a store. He repeatedly tells me his favorite color pallet is black, grey and tan. He likes sleek lines, nothing ornate. In fact he would prefer a kitchen that looked like a Porsche showroom.
When it comes to designing the new home kitchen, men want to be heard. And it’s no wonder: According to a University study of Americans born from 1961 to 1981, married and single men now cook an average of eight meals a week. We’re not talking about men whose hobby is to cook the occasional restaurant-quality meal for friends. This statistic isn’t even about the guy who flaunts his culinary skills by doing dinner-party duty once a week. No, these are the lead cooks in the house, the third of guys that now prepare most of the family meals.
The rise of the foodie culture as well as the many meal kit companies advertised on TV has made home-cooking more alluring to everyone, and with more dual-income families, more men are sharing KP duties. At the same time, cooking has been “recoded” as a macho pastime with the influence of Competitive cooking TV shows and chefs such as Guy Fieri, Chopped, Iron Chef, Cut Throat Kitchen, Bobby Fley and many others.
Professional kitchens have always been dominated by male chefs. It was always seen as masculine work, and the fact that the kitchen has now become the hub of the house is simply an extension of that. “The kitchen is no longer solely the wife’s domain,” according to the National Kitchen & Bath Association. And the $18-billion-a-year kitchen remodeling industry is responding to the apron-ed men. A man’s kitchen has an open-plan that is half command station and half performance venue.
Men will certainly spend money to get their dream kitchen, just as woman will, but what sort of different aesthetic decisions do men make? When a man is in charge of the kitchen-design process there’s often an emphasis on machine-like efficiency. Kitchens are more tailored, more masculine, more streamlined. In a new survey of industry pros conducted by the NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association), clean-lined styling was named the top 2017 kitchen trend.
What’s in: Flat-front cabinetry, counters with mitered rather than rounded edges, high-contrast palettes and large, simple pulls.
What’s out: fancy crown molding, corbels, ornate hardware and Tuscan, French provincial and other traditional styles.
Men tend to go bold and dramatic in their color choices. There are more requests for dark cabinets, such as black and charcoal-gray paint and dark stained woods.
Another emerging trend of the manly kitchen borrows the aesthetic of high-performance sports cars. An Upscale German kitchen manufacturer has collaborated with Porsche Design Studio to build a modular kitchen with finishes such as black lacquer and gray walnut set in stainless steel frames.
Here a kitchen uses bright red and stainless to bring the sports theme inside.
Women are still looking for wood-panel refrigerators and dishwashers to hide them and lots of hidden features like spice pullouts and hidden coffee areas, while men want as much stainless visible as possible. Perpetuating another stereotype, men seem to want power and intensity in appliances. BlueStar offers a 25,000-BTU gas burner (a typical home stove rates 5,000 to 15,000 BTUs). Some men want to incorporate a staggering amount of entertainment and data-access into their schemes. A man planning a kitchen wants a 50-inch television with surround sound.
Women have been cooking a long time and tend to take the kitchen for granted. Guys, on the other hand, view the kitchen as a new adventure. They ask for things women would never think of: broiler units for searing steaks, deep fryers, slicers and other professional equipment. And two sinks are almost mandatory. Even the classic sink-fridge-stove triangle is on its way out, making way for more “cooking zones”, maybe two sinks or two stoves—multiple “stations” that accommodate more than one person working.”
Here are the elements to satisfy a man’s kitchen demands.
Potent color. Predictably enough, a lot of men like dark and bold hues, offset with black or white. very crisp and clean palettes of charcoal gray, dark woods, and white
Big and Bold hardware. Big hands need big pulls.
Gadget pride. Men have no interest in concealing equipment. Pair this with the trend toward colorful
appliances. Large sink faucets.
Entertainment. A wireless sound system and smart TV that can be controlled with a smartphone.
Super-tough surfaces. For counters, engineered stone products, which are resistant to stains and scratches in uniform colors
Power Power Power. Exhaust systems and dishwashers should be heavy-duty. With a powerful stove, choose a hood designed for high BTUs.
Vent hood clearance. To avoid headbanging when tasting, hang the hood high.
Socialization. Add an island with seats and space for socializing. Men (just like women) love to chat it up while creating.