Excelsior Kitchen Design

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Soapstone Kitchen Countertops

Soapstone countertop

Soapstone is a siliceous natural stone, consisting mainly of talc and chlorite. As talc in soapstone is soft to the touch, its feel is smooth and silky, warm and inviting. It's a soft stone, softer than other natural stones, and you wouldn't want to cut on it. Soapstone is charming, rustic, and rich looking, yet versatile enough to fit comfortably within a modern home.

Despite its relative softness, soapstone's dense composition makes it practically indestructible. Unlike some other natural stones, it's nonporousand won't absorb liquids and stains, and it's inert, so acids won't etch it. Soapstone is heat resistant, but also a very efficient heat conductor and radiator. You can burn wood or any variety of fuels in a soapstone fireplace, and the material will absorb and continue to radiate heat long after the fuel has been consumed. Due to these durable features, soapstone has been used in science classrooms and laboratories for work tables and sinks for over one hundred years.

Soapstone is a darker natural stone and comes in shades of grayish to green to blues, and charcoal gray. Random markings include white veining, shades of green, amber or beige in the shape of veins or other formations. A protective coat of mineral oil makes its color even more dramatic. Because of its unparalleled heat retention characteristics, it's the perfect choice for cook tops, fireplace hearths and fireplace surrounds. It's also used for countertops, backsplashes, sinks, table tops, and bathroom vanities and shower stalls.