20 November 2012

"Parties always end up in the kitchen"

Every neighborhood party that I've been to (and every one that we've hosted) has wound up with guests congregating in the kitchen area.  Some may view this as a response to childhood memories of the pleasures to be found in a kitchen, or even as an aboriginal tendency wired in our genes.  A Wall Street Journal article understandably focuses on the truly immense size of some modern home kitchens -
At the highest end, some are over 3,000 square feet, outfitted with walk-in refrigeration rooms, multiple seating areas, wet bars and fireplaces, with fixtures and décor intentionally designed to look like hip living rooms. In some cases, much of the actual cooking is being relegated to a second, smaller kitchen space, so that the main kitchen can be used for entertaining—minus the unsavory dirty dishes or cooking smells. 
- but they note that even in conventional homes, the kitchen is becoming more important -
According to the National Association of Home Builders, the average floor area of the kitchen has increased by about 50% from 1973 to 2007, when the average kitchen size topped out at 303 square feet, or about 12% of a home's overall space.
- and more integrated into the adjacent living spaces.
...builders and architects say space they once allotted to formal living rooms and dining rooms is now reserved for the kitchen-centric great room. Jeffrey Collé, a Hamptons-based designer/builder, says his latest custom homes include "country kitchens," open spaces that include large casual living rooms... Mass builders are now offering new model homes with their largest, most open kitchens ever. Steve Ruffner, the president of KB Homes' Southern California division, says the company introduced a kitchen/great room model about five years ago, replacing the formal dining room in many homes.
I've noticed that at parties there's even a tendency for guests to "pitch in" with the cleanup, rinsing dishes and putting away garbage.  Whether that winds up as a net positive for the host probably depends on the degree of intoxication of the guests. 

1 comment:

  1. That sounds about right. All of our parties end up in the kitchen too, regardless of how big the kitchen is. Closer to the snacks, the drinks, etc.


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