waverly6

Everything but the kitchen sink. Integrated sinks: Love them or meh?

waverly6
August 30, 2019

I'm contemplating getting a sink which incorporates cutting boards and colanders to maximize work space. One of my reasons for renovation is to have a long uninterrupted workspace next to the sink. If I go with the integrated accessories I will need a larger sink and larger sink base cabinets and reduce the workspace on the island. For those who have them, do you find you use the accessories or is it a gadget and after a while, you go back to your old cutting boards, colanders and prepping on the countertop?


Is it a pain heaving the accessories out everytime you want to wash or soak the large platters, casserole dishes or big pots?


Do you find that rather than the beautiful walnut cutting board, you land up using smaller cutting boards which can go into the dishwasher? (I like to know that my cutting boards are really clean after use)?


Anyone really love their sinks and couldn't imagine life without them or do you feel that it didn't live up to expectations and you should have gone with a regular large plain sink?

Comments (42)

  • Zalco/bring back Sophie!

    Bumping up for comment.

  • M



    We love our big Rachiele sink. The built-in drainboard and built-in cutting board keeps things so much cleaner in the kitchen. And if I need the full size of the sink, then I quickly lift the cutting board and set it aside.

    I still use the counter tops, but that's for things like kneading dough. The sink is too small to do that.

    There is a photo on Houzz somewhere, where Dino Rachiele shows off his ~30" workstation sink. I hadn't quite expected this, but even the smaller size makes it still much more versatile than a traditional sink.

    So, yes, I would absolutely go for a ledge sink any time. Much better design.

    We do have the add-a-bowl insert for our sink, and it can do double-duty as a colander. We use it occasionally. But I find it just takes a long time to fill with water (and that's despite the fact that we ordered custom-made smaller size). Most of the time, we simply use the one large bowl and the cutting board.

    And, of course, the drain board is always there and it is constantly in use. We really like having an integrated drain board.

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  • waverly6

    Thanks so much , Zalco. Very much appreciated!
    M, your input is always appreciated your detailed response is exactly the information and opinion that I’m looking fir. I had read about the Rachiele sink here and had started investigating it. I’m really glad to read your response because I was wondering it the price is really worth it.

  • waverly6

    M, what size is your sink and would you recommend going with such a large one.

  • cpartist

    My sister had one in her last house and loved hers.

    waverly6 thanked cpartist
  • M

    The bowl of our sink has an interior dimension of 34", and the drainboard adds another 15". Add one more inch on both sides for exterior dimensions.


    This is an amazing piece of welding. The drain board doesn't have the same depth as the bowl. So, there is enough space under the drain board to accommodate our trash compactor (this only works, because our counter tops are 2" taller than normal).


    @Rachiele Custom Sinks commented on this being a uniquely challenging design, even though his guys specialize in heavily customized sinks. So, yes, it was absolutely worth it for us. Couldn't wish for a better sink, nor for a better customer service experience.


    As for the large dimensions. I really like having the big bowl. You probably could make do with a smaller one. But if you have the space for a 34" bowl, then you can't go wrong. It gives you so many more options organizing your workflow. In our case, the sink looks even bigger, because it has an attached drainboard. So, the overall size of the apron comes out at a staggering 51". But the nice thing is that we don't actually lose any more cabinet space than a normal 30" kitchen sink.


    And personally, I'd never want to go back to a sink without a drainboard. Keeps me counter tops neat and clean, even with messy young kids.


    My only minor nitpick is that the ledges are just a tad too close front-to-back, so I can't hang the inserts from my Miele steam oven onto the ledges. But then, that's a really obscure use case. Not surprised that neither Dino nor I planned for that.

    waverly6 thanked M
  • wilson853

    Ours is a 30" prep sink with two ledges (28" inside) with just a $10 expandable colander and cutting board. The colander slides under the cutting board and there is still enough room for me to run the water. They always stay in the sink unless I am cleaning it. If I have one kitchen sink in a new house it will definitely be a ledge sink, just a bit larger than the one that I have now. It was relatively inexpensive compared to the well-known and boutique brands, but it is the most useful thing in my kitchen. Everything gets done over this sink that might make a mess on the countertop - breading chicken, adding baking ingredients to a bowl, cutting fruits and melons, etc. I also use the board as a big spoon rest when I am cooking and to fill large pots so I am not lifting from 10" below. My sink came with a poly board and I keep cutting mats in the drawer next to the sink that I use over the board. I can go from meat to veggies easily and pop them into the DW. I have several larger off-the-shelf boards that fit the ledges for bigger jobs like cutting watermelon and carving BBQ but nothing too heavy or expensive. Second best thing that I did in was to install two DWs so that eliminates most hand washing or soaking except for non-stick pans.

    waverly6 thanked wilson853
  • waverly6

    Wilson 853, what brand is your sink?


  • waverly6

    M, I wrote a whole long response to you and I guess I didn't press submit and it's gone. Thank you for your very detailed response. I appreciate all the information. Rachiele is one of the brands I'm looking at after seeing reports of it on Houzz forums. Just curious as to why you want to hang your Miele racks there?

    Cpartist, thank you for the recommendation. Do you know which brand?

    I'm asking because in many other posts people had mentioned Ruvati and it is at the other end of the price spectrum from Rachiele. I'm really being cautious as it's not easy to replace a sink after you have put on the granite (or custom wood )countertop.

    I have regular Franke sinks on one house and Blanco sinks here and they both do their job but as I'm short on counter space in my kitchen here I'm thinking ahead.

  • scottie mom

    Following. And @M, always a pleasure to see your kitchen. One of my faves!

  • wilson853

    My sink is this one from overstock although mine is a few years old and came with the poly board. I have seen this same sink marketed under a couple of different brands. Nantucket Pro series now has it in a larger size.

    https://www.overstock.com/Home-Garden/Highpoint-30-Zero-Radius-Undermount-Stainless-Steel-Kitchen-Sink-w-Colander-Cutting-Board-Drain-Silver/9206371/product.html

    waverly6 thanked wilson853
  • waverly6

    amazing price! I'm really leaning towards an offset drain to maximise undersink storage. Maybe put the trash can(s) there.


  • wilson853

    That's a good idea. I did that under our Whitehaven clean up sink which is in a 39" base. I wanted two ledges so settled for the center drain on the prep sink and put another trash next to it.

  • M

    I'm asking because in many other posts people had mentioned Ruvati and it is at the other end of the price spectrum from Rachiele. I'm really being cautious as it's not easy to replace a sink after you have put on the granite (or custom wood )countertop.


    For us, a Rachiele sink made the most sense. It is fully customized for our very specific needs, and even without the customization, the attention to detail is mind-boggling. @Rachiele Custom Sinks has spent decades figuring out what makes a good and functional sink. It's all the little things that you rarely even notice -- until you use the sink in another kitchen and realize that it isn't quite as perfect.


    It's an appliance that gets used several times a day, and it lasts for the lifetime of the kitchen -- or possibly even past the next remodel. But of course, because of all these details, a fully customized sink does cost a premium. Not everybody will be prepared to pay for that. And that is perfectly OK. Fortunately, there are several other vendors these days. They might have little issues here and there, where the design isn't quite optimal. But they also cost a lot less. Only you can decide how important these factors are to you.


    Just curious as to why you want to hang your Miele racks there?


    I usually prep all my ingredients on the cutting board that is sitting in my sink, and then I frequently transfer them to the steam trays that go into the Miele CSO. It would improve my workflow, if I could hang these trays directly into my sink. But admittedly, that's a "first world problem". Things work fine even without this ability.


    But maybe, in hindsight, I could have mailed one of steam trays to Dino Rachiele and asked him to adjust the sink's dimensions just a little bit.

    waverly6 thanked M
  • Jerry Jorgenson

    We've had a 42" Rachiele copper sink for about three years now and couldn't be happier. The mess stays in the sink so counters stay clean. There's no fussing with cleaning, etc. for the sink itself. I'd never go back to a double sink with no workstation space (or a stainless steel sink that shows all the scratches). Some of the sinks I've seen in showrooms have such small bowls that I don't see how they could possibly be useful, so be careful of what you get.



    waverly6 thanked Jerry Jorgenson
  • wilson853

    Here's another that might be of interest.

    https://www.kraususa.com/kwu120-45.html#reviews

    waverly6 thanked wilson853
  • jslazart

    Apologize for a minor high jack, but M -- is there a thread with more information on your kitchen? I am having no luck finding it on my own.

  • Susan Murin

    I have 2 Ruvati ledge sinks in my kitchen (24” prep and 33” with offset drain clean up)and am very happy with them. I use the roll out grate and colander a lot. Only criticism is very flat bottom makes rinsing out bottom of sink a bit tougher- def need a sprayer. My only regret is that I didn’t put in 2 of the larger size!

  • M

    Only criticism is very flat bottom makes rinsing out bottom of sink a bit tougher


    That is a surprisingly common complaint across all types of sinks. There are many manufactures who never get this right. If you have the option, try out the sink before buying it. These are the types of little details that are going to annoy you in day-to-day use. But better manufacturers do pay attention and the entire sink should easily drain and clean up.


    Having said that, a pull-out sprayer head is always a good idea for any type of kitchen sink. Fortunately, most kitchen faucets have that option these days.


    I remember when that was the "cool new feature" back in the 1980's. But I think I just dated myself.

  • waverly6

    Thank you all for your comments. @M always for detailed information and @Jerry Jorgansen for the info on Rachiele sinks and the photos of your very beautiful and functional kitchen. @Wilson 853 for that information on Kraus. I'd be interested in pricing. @Susan Murin, I've seen that Ruvati mentioned a number of times and it has an amazing price. I have seen that criticism about it before and then I realized that my blanco sink Ive hd in this kitchen for 13 years and my Franke sink at home do the same thing! I just thought that is what sinks do and that's how you have to clean them out.

    Like everyone I am so torn between getting what I want, what truly adds function and deciding where to splurge and where I can cut costs without compromising too much. I have always said that my motto is "i want it all, I want it now and I want it for less". My house is already way over improved for the market probably by 50%. I'm not planning on selling anytime soon especially once I do this kitchen reno but I have learned that life is what happens when you are busy making plans.

  • waverly6

    jslazart. No need to apologize, everything helps and that is something we would all like. I think I y have seen M's kitchen before( I have looked at so many I can't remember but would love to see it again. and it would benefit us all.

  • Lisa

    @waverly6 We redid our kitchen 3 years ago. Before we started I had no idea sinks could be so fancy and expensive. We did not plan to get an expensive sink or faucet, but ended up with the Kohler Prolific sink and Karbon faucet, and that was a splurge.


    I feel it was worth the splurge. We normally don't think of sinks as appliances, but I use it more than the other appliances (besides the refrigerator, I guess.) The faucet splurge was not as necessary and I could definitely live without it, but the sink is something I would not want to give up.


    I love the Prolific sink and we use the drain racks every day in many different ways. The cutting board gets a lot of use, but I set it on top of a drain rack so it is a little higher. We leave it on the counter for cutting bread next to the sink, but I use it in the sink also when cutting vegetables. I sometimes use the bowl and colander, but they live underneath the sink, so don't get daily use. The colander was the only part of the sink that was not well designed because the holes are tiny and it drains slowly. If it was better designed I would use it all the time though. I know other integrated sinks have better colanders, but I love everything else about the Prolific sink.


  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Lisa -- Here is how our sink is set up. From bottom to top: Copper grate, colander shelf, cutting board. The cutting board is raised up by this and also because there's a big hole in the colander board, the bottom of the cutting board stays dry so it never has to go on the counter. I don't know if this method is applicable to your sink or not, but just an idea.

    Rachiele copper sink · More Info


  • waverly6

    @Lisa, such a good point about thinking of the sink as an appliance. I have put a year's worth of thought into other appliances and literally the sink is an afterthought and low in my budget considerations. I briefly looked at the Prolific but it didn't have the side drain. I don't know if that is actually going to be as big a consideration as I think it is.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    I've said in the past that the sink was the most expensive appliance in the remodel. (I didn't replace the fridge which likely would have been more expensive). With the wall oven, induction cooktop, and workstation sink, cooking and baking are fun rather than a chore. (bending over and cleanup are the chore parts).

  • waverly6

    thanks Jerry for posting that and also for the very good points you raise. I need 2 sinks but only one has to be a prep sink with attachments. You all have given me food for thought. I will research all the 3 options you are giving me.

  • waverly6

    I will try to get up to a Fergusons in the next few weeks .

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    waverly6 - If the colour works, get quality copper. Virtually no cleanup, kills germs, scratches and stains become invisible in a short time. Not cheap, but worth every penny. The other thing I've found is that a larger sink is better. The 42" I have works fine (and I don't have room for a larger one anyway), but another 12" or so would give a bigger open area when both cutting board and colander are in use (there is about 6" of open space now). The extra area would allow you to be less careful when washing your hands or rinsing utensils. It works with the space I have, but I have to be a bit careful to not splash on the board or colander.

  • waverly6

    Great advice Jerry. I really wish that copper would work here. Sounds amazing At my permanent home. A copper sink would have been perfect. But this is a beach house and the colors are all blue, white, stainless steel and silver tones. Not a copper thing in this house other than the pennies fallen behind the sofa cushions. Interesting advice about the larger sink I am discussing it now with my cabinet maker aka my boyfriend and he is saying he has made the cabinet 36 inches.

  • bubblyjock

    waverly6 - I don't know if you're aware, but Rachiele sinks are also made in stainless steel. We have a copper sink, similar to Jerry's, from Rachiele. I can't imagine going back to a "normal" sink, even one of the large-ish 30" or 36" deep ones, ugh.


    Our Rachiele sink is 54" long, and our cabinet-maker was able to slip three Ikea 18" cabinets beneath with ease, and very little modification (just cut down one pull-out to make room for the plumbing pipes). Each is a pull-out - one for garbage and recycling, one for all the clever Rachiele boards, etc, and one for my chopping boards. They're perfect!


    FWIW, you'd be surprised how well copper works with other colours! I find a natural material is so forgiving with other colours and finishes, more so than a manmade material, generally.

    waverly6 thanked bubblyjock
  • waverly6

    @bubblyjock thanks so much for your reply. I'm really curious about these sinks now. As a ballpark what is the price range for them. I know it's dependent on so many factors. Also bubblyjock. I think I saw on another thread that you mentioned a Facebook group for Aga range owners, I did a search but couldn't find it. Can you give the name or a link?


  • waverly6 thanked Jerry Jorgenson
  • waverly6

    Thank you Jerry Jorgenson. Exactly what I was looking for. Glad it's not the price of a new small car....

  • waverly6

    Thinking a bit more about that copper sink option. That island countertop will be wood with epoxy, most probably a redwood or cedar with fireplace glass in the burls. The base cabinets will be navy blue to complement the midnight blue Aga Elise range placed in the perimeter cabinetry. In that case a copper sink ( and possibly a farmhouse style )could be an option although the dishwasher placed to the left of it will be stainless steel. (havent purchased it yet but it could have a matching cabinet panel.)


    The sink in another area of perimeter cabinetry won't need all the accessories and will be in a granite countertop( yet to be determined).There will be another dishwasher there in stainless. Undercounter refrigerators and warming drawer placed on the backside of navy island but visible from that area and from dining area will be in stainless. What are your thoughts on having one copper farmhouse sink and one stainless steel drop in sink.


    Then what about the faucets?


    I'll post a photo of a similar countertop in the next comment. And also try post a basic floorplan.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Copper goes well with blue so I'm not sure why you need the SS variety. Our kitchen has stainless steel with copper trip where possible. (not the dishwasher or fridge which are just stainless steel). You can get a Waterstone faucet at the Rachiele site. That's what I did. If you don't see a pattern that you like, go to the Waterstone site and then tell Dino which faucet you would like. Ours is the 5300 PLP Contemporary with Tuscan Brass living finish.


    Here you can see how the living finish works.

    Rachiele copper sink · More Info



    Rachiele copper sink · More Info


    waverly6 thanked Jerry Jorgenson
  • waverly6

    The sink is about 40 feet from a salt water bay. I wonder how it would look after a while.

  • waverly6

    Jerry I see your sink is also set in a wooden countertop. What kind of wood is it with what finish?

  • waverly6

    This is a desktop in my office made with walnut and lighter blue glass. The island countertop will be similar but out of cedar with darker blue glass

  • waverly6

    This is the raw newly purchased cedar. It will have been drying for about 8 to 10 months when the countertop fabrication starts.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    I wouldn't get the living finish if I lived near salt water. You'll need one with a coating (there are many choices). The wood is maple butcher block. https://www.wurthlac.com/storefront/kitchen-hardware-accessories/maple-butcher-blocks-backsplashes/solid-maple-butcher-block-counter-top-1-1-2-thick/prodMMC25.html

  • bubblyjock

    Gorgeous cedar, waverly6 ! I can also recommend Odie's Oil, which is made and sold from a little business in Florida - you should be able to find it online. It's a waterproof zero-VOC wood finish - hard to explain, but it's amazingly waterproof and not shiny like many others. I've got it on the kitchen floor and NOTHING soaks in, and I'm not very nice to it. His advertising is beyond cheesy, and he's cagey about what's in it while dissing the competition, which imho is unprofessional, but there you go. It's good stuff!


    We also got a Waterstone faucet from Rachiele, and it's perfect - I don't know how they do it, but it doesn't splash.


    It's worth putting together what you fancy using the Rachiele website, and then phoning Dino, as he's extremely knowledgeable (was previously a Certified Kitchen Designer) and very helpful, lots of good ideas to get you the best bang for your buck!


    My sink is on his website, actually - it's the overhead shot with lots going on - dishes drying, flowers, big pile of onions to make soup, and a bottle of wine ;).


    I'll try sending you a pm about the fb Aga group. :)

  • waverly6

    Awesome.
    I’ll research the info about the odies oil. Thank you for the tip !
    I’ll definitely get more ideas and thoughts of what I want and then call them.
    My mother used to say, when you get married you always sink into his arms. After marriage, you always have your arms in the kitchen sink so it definitely merits spending a lot of time planning where I spend a lot of time.

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