Looking for a stone countertop that doesn't look like everyone's else's granite kitchen surface? Consider slate.
Commonly used for centuries as a durable and fire-proof roofing material, slate is also popular for patios and floors. But don't confuse the rough cut outdoor stone with the elegant, honed slate used for countertops.
Slate as a countertop material offers several advantages over the more popular granite. It doesn't need to be polished or sealed, although it can be oiled for glossier surface. It's impervious to water and stains. It's heat proof. A pan directly from a 500 degree oven won't damage slate. Slate does not react with foods or chemicals and won't fade or darken. Remember those slate-topped lab tables from high school? It's one of the most durable materials available.
Sheldon Slate, mined in Maine and New York, comes in a variety of colors including black, red and green. As with all natural stones, slate can vary from highly marbled to pieces with no veining.
Slate countertops are custom manufactured by Sheldon Slate. A variety of edge treatments are available. The company will work with you on designing a coutertop.