Your shopping cart is empty.

Cambria Ella or Calacatta Quartzite in Kitchen with no island

January 9, 2019

I am deciding between Cambria Ella and Calacatta Quartzite for a kitchen update. The cabinets will be painted white (maybe Chantilly Lace) after the counters are installed. Backsplash to be decided, but probably a simple subway. The floors are natural red oak wood. I have 2 dilemma's: Which slab to pick AND do either of these slabs work for my kitchen layout. I do not have an island, but do have an "L" peninsula by the sink. Will the direction of the slabs work if all goes horizontal in the kitchen? I know that there will need to be a seam in the "L" shape counter, hoping this can be done at the sink so it is less noticeable. Will these work or will the counter be to busy since I have multiple counter areas? THANKS!!


Calacatta Quartzite



Kitchen Layout

Current Kitchen

my house · More Info

my house · More Info

Comments (16)

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    A good fabricator will be able to cut it so that the veining runs the same direction, even w/the L. Always check the template of how he proposes to cut the stone to make sure you are satisfied w/the outcome. Don't let them cut it unless you've signed off on it.

    you don't want this:

    If there isn't enough material to cut this correctly, you made need another slab. Check with the fabricator.

    If you are doing a tile backsplash, do not get the 4" piece up the back. and if you plan on keeping what you have, find a different countertop.

    Also, Calacatta is a marble, not a quartzite. One of those appears to be a White Macaubas quartzite.

    psaag thanked Beth H. :
  • damiarain

    Possibly a jumbo slab of the Ella could do the entire L without a seam

    psaag thanked damiarain
  • psaag

    Oh my, I definitely do not want to seem like that. And yes, we are getting rid of the backsplash and doing something else once the counter and cabinets are done.

    Beth H. The stoneyard is calling the second and third slabs Calacatta Quartzite . Are these the ones you are thinking might be a cross cut of white Macouba us?

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    Calacatta is a region in Italy where the marble w/the same name is quarried. Perhaps there is a type of quartzite that comes from that region? I've only heard of it attached to marble (and quartz that tries to resemble the look). However, stone yards commonly rename their slabs whatever they want.

    If it's true quartzite, try the scratch test and the lemon juice test on a small piece (down on the edge or ask them if they have a leftover piece from the same lot of slabs).

    lemon juice will causing etching on any calcite (marble) deposits. squeeze a few drops and let it sit for 5-10 mins. wipe away. any etching? if so, you have marble or at least a slab w/marble (calcite) deposits.

    take a glass tile and try and scratch the surface of it w/the edge or a piece of you slab. granite and quartzite will scratch glass. if it's marble, it's softer than glass and won't touch it. it will leave a powdery residue instead.

    Do some research on the particular natural stone slabs you are considering. Ask the country of origin and any other names the stone is known as.

  • PRO
    The Cook's Kitchen

    Manmade stones with directionality are best for counters with no corners or seams. The production process is not a reproducible printed tile type that results in the ability to have a perfect seam match. Two consecutive slabs will be as close as you get, but are not bookmatch perfect.

    Quartz is chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry cake batter that is being poured into a mold. Even if you pour at the same height, angle, and rate, the results will not be “the same”. As long as you do not have expectations of a perfectly matched seam, they are fine choices to use.

    If you want perfect bookmatched seaming, you need to select bookmatched natural stone slabs, and buy the extra square footage needed to produce bookmatched seams.

    Most situations with most materials, the good can be had without the expense, or self stress of the expectations of the perfect. But you need to interview your fabricator on the front end. Your expectations can not be assumed to be shared. And neither can their skill be assumed.

    The most disappointing results happen when expectations don’t match abilities. Verify their skills personally, and and your expectations in writing. Up front, before you are given a quote. Perfect does come at a greater cost than good, so you want to be sure that that is out in the open from the beginning.

    psaag thanked The Cook's Kitchen
  • RedRyder
    The Cook’s Kitchen and BethH are giving you important information. There are too many Houzz discussions about how to fix poorly seamed countertops — and being disappointed in the materials purchased. All stone yards call colors whatever they want and whether something is marble or quartz needs to be tested so you really know what you are buying.
    Make sure to SEE the layout before letting the fabricator make a single cut in your slabs. And be prepared to buy another slab so you have the veining match up, as you want it. Take your time, question everyone and everything so there is a happy result at the end.
    Both slabs are gorgeous.
    psaag thanked RedRyder
  • psaag

    Thank you for all the words of wisdom! I will definitely spend more time with the fabricator discussing the seams, etc. I will also expect a layout/template signoff. I'd rather know what is going to happen and be good with it than be surprised.

    Now to pick a slab. I've seen both the Ella and the quartzite in person. Both are nice, but I am leaning towards the quartzite. The stone yard insists that this is a Calacatta quartzite and not marble, but, they cannot give me a piece to test from this exact slab, only remnants from another slab by the same name. How can I test the actual slab before buying? The piece they gave me is testing out well so far. I put vinegar on it tonight with no etching after 1 hour, going to buy a lemon tomorrow to see what happens. Will also do the scratch test, but, again, this is not on the actual stone I have tagged.

  • javiwa

    We have what is termed Calacatta Gold quartzite in our kitchen; and it is indeed the crosscut version of Macaubus White. One the stone veterans somewhere in this forum over the years said it's a Brazilian thing. If your sample isn't etching by now (using vinegar), that's a good sign. This article is a must read, written by our unofficial resident geologist Karin Kirk. And in this GardenWeb thread, Karin discusses the bottle test. Good luck!

    psaag thanked javiwa
  • JD BR


  • psaag

    OK, checked with the fabricator and he will come up with layout before I commit to the slab. The lines of the slab will all go in the same direction on every surface, horizontal across the room, even where it turns the corner at the "L". I'll see what it looks like once he draws it up and make sure to either approve/disapprove.

    Now I need an opinion. Is this slab to "busy" for all the different surfaces in the kitchen? There is no island, but, we use the "L" counter as you would use the island. OR, should a kitchen like mine have a counter with a consistent, overall pattern throughout? Thanks!

  • RedRyder
    Doesn’t look too busy to me. Rather gorgeous!
    psaag thanked RedRyder
  • Ondre'a
    I like it. I am building and my cabinets will be Chantilly Lace too. That is a beautiful slab. Hang in there, I just went through your exact delimna. You can't go wrong with either slab. Your kitchen is going to be amazing!
    psaag thanked Ondre'a
  • psaag

    So, I went back today to look at the slab again, and I noticed another dimension of color. Does this look green to you guys? It is the Calacatta Stone. Would you still buy it? My thought is that I want a white kitchen with a counter that is not super white but had a little bit of movement. I thought the Stone was mainly grey, white, cream and charcoal, which I am fine with. Don’t know what to think of the green! Also, if I go with it, will it alter what I can doe with color in the rest of the house, or will it still be considered neutral?!?

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    that's not Calacatta marble. If they are trying to sell it as that, w/the Calacatta price tag (more expensive), I'd dispute that. Calacatta can only be name Calacatta if it comes from Calacatta Italy. Other places call marble calacatta, even if it comes from another quarry. they're not supposed to.

    So, have them show you the invoice sheet on where this slab's country of origin is.

    It actually looks like a quartzite similar to Sea Pearl

  • psaag

    They are calling it Calacatta Quartzite. I asked questions (thanks to this community:) and they said it is from Brazil. It looks similar to a Macuabus white I saw at another stone yard(minus the green tones), so maybe they interchange the names? This has become so confusing!

  • PRO
    Beth H. :

    they prob think that adding a name w/ 'Calacatta' in it (that people know what that is) will make it more 'friendly' towards buyers. As I've said, Calacatta is marble. From Italy.

    As for your quartzite, see if the corner of it scratches glass. If so, it's a good quartzite. see if it etches if you drop lemon juice on it and let it sit for 5 mins. No etching? good. If it won't scratch a glass tile and if lemon juice etches it, it's marble.

Need help with an existing Houzz order? Call 1-800-368-4268 (Mon-Sun).