Installation Tips – Support Brackets for Butcher Block Overhangs

Installation Tips – Support Brackets for Butcher Block Overhangs

The majority of butcher blocks we sell are for kitchen islands, many designed with an overhang to allow for seated dining. If butcher block overhangs by 8″ or more on a side of an island or 12″ or more on the end, it must be sufficiently supported. We recommend steel brackets to support these overhangs. We sell a variety of styles, and installation is pretty simple. We will take this opportunity to share with you some key learnings from our installations so as to better prepare you for your butcher block installation.

Learning #1 – Every installation is going to be CUSTOM. There is no such thing as a standard kitchen island. Most islands are very unique in size, shape and construction. It is best to remove your current island top, then take a look at the design and construction before you order support brackets. Islands can include materials like plywood, hardwood, particle board, or a combination of these. The type of wood and its thickness will all dictate where a bracket can go, or what additional wood support you may need to place in order to install your bracket of choice.

base cabinet

Learning #2 – Hidden L Brackets and Flat Brackets are very often the bracket of choice. The Hidden L Brackets work well for a cantilever on a short side of an island where a long bracket may not be applicable. And Flat Brackets are not just for pony walls. If the island has sufficient hard wood support on the top side of the base, flat brackets are an easier install solution. Don’t overlook a Long Bracket. These provide maximum support and strength as they span the island from front to back. They also work well when drawers prevent the use of another bracket style. Long brackets are very easy to install.

support bracket type

Learning #3 – Brackets with an “extra hole” at the tip are specifically suitable for butcher block installation. This hole serves as the critical connection between the butcher block countertop and the brackets. There is no glue used to set a butcher block on a base, so screwing into the base cabinet with expansion holes and using the extra hole in the bracket is what holds the butcher block in place on the island base. Additionally, because wood is not always completely flat like stone is, the additional hole can help to draw the wood down to the bracket. (If you are installing a granite top, it is often placed over a plywood underlayment, in which case this extra hole comes in handy to also anchor the plywood to the bracket.)

extra hole

Learning #4 – An oscillating multifunction power tool is your go-to tool for “notching” the base cabinet. Notching is necessary to allow the bracket to rest flush to the top of the base cabinet. Simply score the wood on the base cabinet first using a utility knife. Then notch out the area using your oscillating power tool.

power tool

Key Learning #5 – Check that brackets are level before final installation. After notching, clamp brackets in place on the island and place a level on the brackets to make sure the countertop will set level. It may require notching more out of the base cabinet, or conversely, placing a small shim under a bracket to get it perfectly level. This will be a big time saver for you, before installing the brackets and setting the countertop.

level brackets

For additional information, read our introductory blog on overhang supports which will help you choose the right support bracket for your application.

How Many Cutting Boards Does a Home Cook Really Need?

How Many Cutting Boards Does a Home Cook Really Need?

HINT: You Need One Board for Each of Snow White’s Dwarfs.
According to Bob Davis, an accomplished amateur gourmet and a loyal Butcher Block Co. customer, the answer is SEVEN cutting boards. Read his rundown below.

For more than half a century Bob has been preparing meals for his family and his friends in his home kitchen. Over the years, that home kitchen has been located in Florida, Louisiana, Colorado, California, and Arizona. That geographic diversity has exposed Bob to a wide range of local cuisines, contributing to his culinary expertise. Italian and Cajun recipes are among Bob’s go-to favorites. 

small cutting board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #1

John Boos Chop-N-Slice Small Utility Board 10″ x 5″ x 1″ Maple Butcher Block

“I use this board more often than any other”, Bob explains. “It’s small and lightweight so perfect for times when all I really need to do is to slice a lime, tomato, or onion, for instance.”

paddle board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #2

John Boos Long, Narrow Paddle Serving Board 20″ x 5″ x 3/4″ in Maple, Cherry or Walnut

According to Bob, “This is a great ‘presentation board.’ I enjoy showing it off when serving cheese and crackers or meat appetizers. It’s also perfect for passing a hot loaf of bread around the dinner table.”

herb board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #3

John Boos Maple Herb Board 13” Diameter x 2-1/4″ Maple Butcher Block

Chef Bob explains, “For dicing herbs and spices I prefer using a rocker blade in a scooped-out board like the Boos Herb Board. Because the board is concave, herb and spice fragments fall to the dead center of the bowl. Since it’s nearly impossible for any ingredients to escape from the board’s indentation, more of these spice and herb fragments wind up in my creation, plus, I’m left with less of a mess to clean up.”

reversible board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #4

John Boos Reversible, Grooved, Square Cutting Board 12” x 12” or 15” x 15”, 1-3/4″ Thick

“This is the most versatile board a chef can own,” Bob declares. “I typically use the flat, non-grooved side for straightforward meal prep. It’s the perfect size for preparing a meal for just one or two. When carving a piece of meat, the groove on the board’s flip side comes in handy. It catches excess meat juice and holds any fat or gristle I slice away for discarding later.”

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #5

Paddle-shaped Pizza Board

Unfortunately, John Boos & Co. does not offer a large board designed for serving pizza, so Chef Bob had to settle for an off-brand paddle board.

“My pizza board gets lots of use, especially when my grandkids visit,” Bob claims. “I enjoy making pizza from scratch and love mixing tasty meats and vegetables in different combinations. What I like most about my large paddle board is how easy it makes the task of removing pizza from the oven and moving it to the dinner table.”

cherry cutting board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #6


John Boos Reversible Cutting Board 18″ x 12″ x 1-1/2”, in Maple or Cherry

“This is my second-most-often-used board,” Bob explains. “First, it’s so spacious that I can slice onions, tomatoes, peppers and cilantro all at the same time, yet keep them apart. Second, to start fresh with a clean, dry surface, all you need do is flip the board over to reveal a pristine surface.”

board

Chef Bob’s Must-Have Cutting Board #7

John Boos Large, Grooved, Reversible Board 20″ x 15″ or 24” x 18” x 1-1/2″

“I call this one my Monster Board,” declares Chef Bob. “It’s my go-to board whenever I’m cooking a roast or steaks for larger gatherings.”

“One side of the board has a juice groove that catches meat juice and holds scraps. The opposite, flat side is just an easy flip away.”

So, there you have it, folks – Chef Bob’s rundown on the seven cutting boards every home cook should have on hand. Although he can’t make any promises, Bob believes that if you follow his recommendations, you, just like Snow White and the dwarfs, will live happily ever after.

Visit Butcher Block Co. for hundreds of cutting boards from which to choose.

2020 Holiday Shopping Season Arrived Early This Year!

2020 Holiday Shopping Season Arrived Early This Year!

Retailers across the globe are already in the midst of holiday sale events…in October! While it’s not unusual to see a spattering of holiday promotions before Halloween, this year is clearly an outlier. Retailers have kicked off the holiday shopping season earlier than ever for a number of sound reasons.

First, brick-and-mortar stores, wisely seeking to minimize big crowds in the face of a global pandemic, are attempting to smooth out foot traffic. Many have scaled back or altogether eliminated plans for Black Friday doorbuster sales. Instead, they’re striving to spread their in-store sales across more weeks than in years past.

Second, major retailers are feeling pressure to shift into high gear earlier this year for fear of missing out. With millions of Americans out of work due to the Covid-19-induced recession, and predictions that we’ll see fewer and smaller holiday gatherings so less gift-giving, the expectation is that overall holiday shopping and spending will decline this year. So retailers are aggressively competing over what’s expected to be a smaller pie.

Since 2015, Amazon has staged their premier annual sale event – Prime Day – during summer; until this year, that is. In 2020 the world’s largest E-commerce business postponed Prime Day to keep focus on stabilizing supply chains thrown into turmoil when a huge swath of consumers shifted to online shopping almost overnight in conjunction with the Covid-19 outbreak.

Once Amazon announced Prime Day 2020 would occur on October 13-14, major brick-and-mortar retailers advanced their holiday sales events. Walmart, the nation’s largest retailer, even preempted Amazon, kicking off their “Big Save Event” on the preceding Sunday – October 11. Target elected to go head to head against Amazon by running their Target Deal Days concurrently with Amazon’s Prime Day on October 13 and 14.

There’s a fourth critical reason why retailers are encouraging shoppers to pull the trigger earlier this year – expected product sourcing challenges and shipping bottlenecks. This year more than ever, consumers are focused on exercise gear, gaming consoles, and home-cooking related wares, such as butcher blocks, kitchen work tables and carts, wood cutting boards, kitchen knives and knife blocks.

So when we at the Butcher Block Co. encourage shoppers to lock in their purchases early this year, it’s not due merely to self-interest. Of course, we appreciate the business, but more importantly, we want shoppers to increase their chances of scoring the exact gifts they want and to receive them before Christmas.

As families spend more time at home, especially in their kitchens, people are rediscovering the joy of preparing their own meals. That’s great news, but heightened demand can create downsides. For example, demand for John Boos products has been so through the roof this year that lead times on many Boos top-sellers are running two weeks longer than normal. That’s why this year we are encouraging early holiday shopping. Please place orders for Boos products by November 6. Most of the Butcher Block Co.’s other suppliers carry some product inventory and do not make-to-order, so their Christmas cutoff dates are later in the year.

Celebrating a Virtual Thanksgiving

Celebrating a Virtual Thanksgiving

Without a doubt, this year many of us will experience Thanksgiving celebrations that are outside historical norms. Those of us who typically enjoy a Thanksgiving feast dining solo or in the company of immediate family may not change things up. But those of us who traditionally celebrate the holiday in large gatherings that include extended families and close friends might be well advised to mix things up this year, in light of that ultimate party crasher, Covid-19.

So this time around, it’s wise to plan two events in parallel. First, there’s the in-person meal and the cherished ritual of expressing our thanks for all our blessings. But more than ever before, this year hosts and hostesses should give thought to how to share the feast and festivities with virtual guests – that is, family and friends who will be present in spirit only. A virtual Thanksgiving – by way of photos, a video, a video call or live streaming – can bring everyone together for the holiday.

You’ve been through the drill with respect to preparing and serving Thanksgiving dinner, so you know how important it is to pay attention to such details as menu planning, grocery shopping, preparation, and more preparation. The good news is you still have time to put in place a solid foundation to make Thanksgiving 2020 especially memorable. But keep in mind that demand for kitchen furniture and accessories has never been higher, so don’t put off shopping!

Equip yourself with high-quality, durable and sanitary butcher block work surfaces for all your food preparation. John Boos & Co. is the go-to trusted brand for all things butcher block – counter and island tops, work tables, kitchen carts, and most importantly, carving boards, cutting boards and chopping blocks. Make your holiday meal prep easier and treat yourself to a new butcher block.

As they say, the proof is in the tasting. But “presentation” may be everything! And that brings us back to butcher block – as gorgeous as it is functional. Some of our customers have ordered a new Foundry Collection table for their virtual Thanksgiving gathering. And many folks are tossing their old carving boards and upgrading to a board to last a lifetime. After all, you want the virtual story you share with friends and loved ones to showcase your excellent taste in kitchen tools and accessories, as well as the fruits of your labor.

To avoid kicking yourself later, remember to take pictures and record video during each phase of the process – as you prep and stage food; as you arrange each masterpiece; as your guests admire it and finally dig in; and eventually, as everyone moans about overstuffing themselves. This will help everyone appreciate the effort involved, better understand participants’ relationships, conjure up great memories later, and maybe even stoke appetites at the same time.

And while delicious food and magnificent presentation are at the heart of any Thanksgiving extravaganza, the soul of the holiday is found in our giving of thanks and in cherishing the time we spend with one another.

Butcher Block Pantry Remodel Projects

Butcher Block Pantry Remodel Projects

As we transition from being stuck at home during the Summer to being stuck at home during the Fall, what better way to kick-start the baking season than with a butcher block pantry remodel? Both functional and beautiful, butcher block has rapidly grown in popularity for pantries. Clear out your clutter, reorganize, and bring some warmth and classic charm into your pantry this Fall. With a fresh new pantry, you’ll be all the more motivated to whip up some treats to mail to friends and family. Plus, expanding or reorganizing your pantry means you can better stock up on staple items and decrease the amount of home deliveries you’ll need. Below are some of our most recent favorite remodels from real life customers.

butcher block pantry remodel

Katie created this masterpiece of a baker’s pantry, utilizing  BB Co. Brand Beech Plank Style butcher block for both the cabinet tops and the wall shelves.  Not only am I impressed by this butcher block pantry remodel, I’ll admit I’m jealous of all her storage!

Katie had an issue with a wall not being square, leaving a gap along one long and one short side on one of her tops. She came up with such a clever solution to a rather common problem, that I just have to share! Rather than ordering backsplash to try to cover the gap, or trim to fill with wedges, she purchased some simple hardwood quarter round trim, stained to match the beech wood, and applied around all edges. It looks professional and like it was the plan the whole time. Katie did a great job and I’m sure will be baking up a storm this season!

butcher block pantry remodel

Kathleen’s project involved a bit more customization, and creates a warm aesthetic with John Boos Walnut Edge Grain tops for her client’s California pantry. The combination of the rich walnut wood with the bright shelving provides for a stunning contrast.

butcher block pantry remodel

We went back and forth with different layout options for this U-shaped area, and decided on 45-degree miter joints to keep the flow as natural as possible. As you can see, a lot of work goes in behind the scenes to make your butcher block pantry remodel project a success!

Are you planning to tackle any home improvement projects this season? If your plans include a pantry remodel, we would love to help!

Small DIY Butcher Block Projects

Small DIY Butcher Block Projects

Small DIY butcher block projects can make a big impact! While often easy, fast and affordable, they can result in a huge sense of accomplishment, too. Butcher block is ideal for the kitchen, but also cleverly used in other places in the home: check out all these creative projects our customers have tackled!

DIY butcher block kitchen island

Restore a vintage buffet with a new butcher block top to make a kitchen island that is not only practical, but a showstopper! Tip – remember to always remove the original top and place butcher block on an open base cabinet to prevent possible warping. Featured – White Oak Edge Grain from BB Co. brand.

Create a DIY butcher block Coffee Bar in a sweet niche with a wood countertop and attractive backsplash or quaint signage. Tip – oil your butcher block once a month to protect and moisturize. Featured – Boos Walnut Edge Grain.

Wet bars are becoming increasingly popular. For a nice contrast, consider butcher block in one of 15 different species. Tip – order conversion varnish or Waterlox finish for more water proofing. Featured – BBCo. brand Ash Edge Grain.

Cherish an heirloom table for years to come with some fresh paint and an upgraded butcher block top. Makes for a great food prep surface and dining spot. Tip – order oil finish if you intend to use as a chopping block, or Varnique finish for dining. Featured – Boos Blended Grain Maple.

Our DIY butcher block customers have made practical kitchen carts from vintage pieces, end tables and even (tool) rollaways, by adding a butcher block surface for the top. Tip – remember to always remove the original top and place butcher block on an open base to prevent possible warping. Featured – 4.5″ thick Beech Edge Grain BB Co. brand.

DIY butcher block pantry

Every serious baker deserves their own bakers’ pantry to keep their precious specialty appliances and necessities organized and easily accessible. Tip – order custom sizes, and a conversion varnish finish for low maintenance countertops and shelves. Featured – BB Co. brand Beech Plank-style.

DIY your own custom cutting board by choosing the dimensions to exactly fit your kitchen space. Choose from 1 of 15 different wood species. Tip – remember to request reversible (15% upcharge) if needed. Featured – BB Co. brand Maple Plank-style 1″ thick.

Butcher block is not just for kitchens! Make your own coffee table by simply adding sturdy hairpin legs. Tip – order with varnish finish and treat it like the piece of fine furniture that it is. Featured – Boos 7″thick Maple End Grain.

DIY butcher block desk

Consider a DIY butcher block desk. Again, choose a varnish finish for low maintenance and add some vintage hairpin legs. Tip – End grain is very hard wood, so to prevent it from cracking always pre-drill holes before screwing in legs. Featured – Boos Walnut End Grain.

There are endless clever uses for butcher block, like this custom speed bag made by another creative DIYer. Tip – order custom sizes and shapes of butcher block by calling us at 877-845-5597. Featured – Boos Maple Edge Grain.

It’s easy to start a DIY butcher block project. Visit our online configurator for ordering a custom John Boos butcher block or a Butcher Block Co. brand butcher block. Then send us your pictures so we can feature your creation in an upcoming blog!

Overhang Supports for Butcher Block Countertops

Overhang Supports for Butcher Block Countertops

Here is one more way we are your one-stop-shop! We sell hundreds of butcher block countertops each month to DIYers, contractors, designers, and small businesses. And very often, their plans involve countertop or island overhangs designed to accommodate seating for dining. One of the most common requests we have is for us to sell overhang supports to aid in proper installation.

Butcher Block Co. is pleased to announce we have added overhang supports, including steel brackets and corbels, to make it possible for our customers to source these products and experience a one-stop shopping experience.

BRACKETS

When to use them: We recommend any butcher block with a side overhang of 8″ or more or an end overhang of 12″ or more, be properly installed with support brackets (or support corbels).

side overhang
Side Overhangs

end overhang
End Overhangs

What types do we have: We carry 5 different steel support brackets to meet your installation applications.

How to choose the right bracket: Use this decision tree to help you choose the right bracket for your application. Most people choose hidden brackets because of the benefits of a) providing a floating appearance and b) not having hardware that could interfere with a person’s leg room when seated at the overhang.

overhang brackets

How to choose the right length bracket: You will need to determine the amount of unsupported overhang that you want. We recommend only 4 to 6″ be unsupported. Then you measure the lengths from either the inside base cabinet (hidden brackets) or outside base cabinets (visible L bracket). For detailed directions see product feature info on each bracket at ButcherBlockCo.com.

How to install brackets: Installation is simple and fast. Generally, it requires screwing the bracket into the base cabinet. The addition of a 1×4 or 2×4 to the inside base cabinet is recommended, for anchoring the support bracket. Hidden brackets are mounted flush with base cabinets by simply notching out for the thickness of the bracket. Then follow standard butcher block installation instructions for anchoring your countertop to the base cabinet (link).

CORBELS

When to use them: Use a corbel when you are looking for both functional support AND a decorative accent to your overhang. Same guidelines apply: for overhangs 8″ or more on sides and 12″ or more on ends of countertops.

What types do we have: We carry 9 different steel, decorative support corbels covering 6 different design styles. (Three designs are available in both a 1.5″ and 2″ width.)

support corbels

How to choose the right corbel: This is easy. It is all about what appeals to you, and what fits your decor and application. Choose the corbel design, then the length required to support the overhang you have planned.

How to install corbels: Typical installation requires a 1×4 or 2×4 support be placed inside a base cabinet to which the corbel will anchor. Refer to our Corbel Installation Instructions for more details.

Butcher Block Co. wanted to offer our shoppers a wide enough selection of overhang supports so every customer would discover multiple options, but not so many that she would feel overwhelmed having to choose from too many.

Summertime Care For Butcher Block With An Oil Finish

Summertime Care For Butcher Block With An Oil Finish

Most butcher blocks come pre-treated with a food-safe, natural oil finish that moisturizes and protects the wood and makes it safe for food preparation, including cutting.

Summertime temperature and humidity changes could cause your natural oil finish butcher block to dry and crack.

With a little TLC now, you can protect your investment for the future.

summertime care TLC

For summertime care, apply John Boos Mystery Oil now, to help moisturize and restore your butcher block.

Mystery Oil is an all-natural blend of white mineral oil, carnauba wax and beeswax that restores wood by replenishing moisture lost through repeated washings and simple evaporation.

Summertime care Oil

Apply Mystery Oil liberally to the surfaces of your butcher block. Spread the oil using a clean, dry cloth. Wait several hours, or even overnight, for it to soak in. Wipe off any excess oil with a paper towel.

Repeat every 3 to 4 weeks to keep your butcher blocks in tip-top condition and to extend their useful lives.

For extra summertime care, apply Boos Beeswax Board Cream after the Mystery Oil treatment to help seal in the moisture.

Customizable Country Work Table Fits Every Kitchen!

Customizable Country Work Table Fits Every Kitchen!

Our John Boos Country Work Table is the most popular butcher block table we sell! Standing at a counter height of 35″, it is the perfect table for food preparation. It provides an additional work surface and more counter space for appliances, if that’s what you need. But the main attraction is that this table is customizable to fit your kitchen decor and space. Plus, with multiple add-on features, it can buy you more storage capacity, too! 

13 COLORS

country work table colors

The Country Work Table is available with a natural wood base (i.e., table apron, legs and shelf/shelves) or it can be finished with one of 12 colors. Nine paint color options run the gamut, from Barn Red to Clover Green and from Caribbean Blue to an orangish Spicy Latte. Or choose one of three wood stains in walnut, cherry or gray. You’re sure to find the hue that complements your kitchen decor.

7 SIZES

country work table sizes

The Country Work Table is available in seven rectangular sizes. The smallest is about 3ft long x 2ft wide and our largest is 5ft long x 3ft wide. Depending on its style and size, you might use your table as a kitchen island for dining, positioned in the center of the kitchen. Or you can set it against a wall and use it for added counter and shelf space. With so many sizes to choose from, you can design the table that best fits your kitchen space.

3 SPECIES

country work table species

Our Maple butcher block and Oak butcher block Country Work Tables are by far the most popular versions, tried-and-true for years. However, our newest addition with a blended grain walnut butcher block top is very trendy now, as more customers are gravitating toward the warmth and richness of walnut for countertops, island tops and cabinetry in their kitchens.

STORAGE OPTIONS

storage options

Everyone loves a little extra storage space, especially in the kitchen. Add a drawer to your table to tuck away cooking utensils and kitchen gadgets. Select a few wicker storage baskets, perfect for farmhouse kitchens. And order one or two slatted shelves if you need extra space for appliances, cookware or decorations. Finally, the addition of casters instantly makes your table portable, allowing you to move it when and where you need it, then easily store it until next time.

There are hundreds, actually thousands, of versions of the John Boos Country Work Table given 13 colors x 7 sizes x 3 species x 3 shelf options x baskets x drawers x casters, oh my! So certainly you can design a configuration that’s just right for you and your kitchen!

Now More Than Ever, We Are Baking

Now More Than Ever, We Are Baking

Some of us love the smell of baking; others just savor the tastes. Some of us enjoy baking because we appreciate the science behind it. Recipes call for exact quantities or amounts of certain ingredients to be combined in rigid order, following a time-tested “formula.” Focusing on this step-by-step process can relieve our minds from worrying about other stress in our life.

Some of us enjoy the process of baking as much as the end result. Humans find few things more satisfying than checking a box and moving onto the next task at hand, especially in mouth-watering anticipation. The more daring among us even relish the chance to add a pinch of baker’s art to that recipe written by Mr. Science.

stress baking

Some of us, looking for productive ways to fill a sudden surfeit of idle time, are indulging in “stress baking” of late. Nothing like pounding and kneading bread dough to relieve some stress! And a little victory now and again goes a long way to help restore our senses of normalcy and accomplishment.

social baking
And then there’s “social baking” – the perfect new way to spend quality time with family. Cap off the experience by indulging in a delicious sampling of the fruits of your labor. And be sure to share! Baking is all about sharing, so don’t let the exultation end there. Celebrate your accomplishments by posting the experience on your favorite social media sites. It will inspire others to follow your lead!

If you’re an experienced baker, you already know that sturdy-but-smooth butcher block is the perfect work surface for baking.

The Butcher Block Co. offers a full range of butcher block tops for kitchen counters and islands, as well as butcher-block tables, carts, and cutting boards that can help make baking a breeze. And, if you’d like to take your home baking to the next level, check out our lineup of John Boos Bakers’ Tables. You won’t find a wider selection anywhere!