Van Metre Homes Ambassador Chef Spike Mendelsohn Shares Kitchen Design Tips

Van Metre Homes Ambassador Chef Spike Mendelsohn Shares Kitchen Design Tips

Maximize your Pantry

“How many times have you wanted to hide stuff, or have a little hide away space, before or even while having people over? Adding a sink and countertop to your pantry allows you to have a clean kitchen while you are entertaining, keeping your entertaining area looking awesome. Use it as a prep area to cut vegetables or use it as a utility sink, you’ll find having this added space to be priceless.”


“Seeing all of your tools gets your creative juices pumping.   So, really well designed shelving is key. Cabinetry should be thoughtful, so there is no wasted space. In my world as a chef, shelving is everything.  So rather than being stored in a drawer you stumble on once a year, you see your favorite tools often.  My favorite tool is a blender because there is nothing more rewarding than making a refreshing gazpacho in the summer or a hot velvety soup in the winter.” 

Kitchen Island

“When it comes to the kitchen layout, you can’t underestimate the value of a large well designed island.  The classic rectangle is most new home buyers go-to, but a new trend that I am loving is the L shaped island.  The L shape allows you to have work space on one side and have friends and family seated on the other so you do not have to holler into the other room.”  

Pet Dining

“We all know our four legged friends are part of the family too! That’s why we added a built-in bowl area to the kitchen island to give furry family members an eating area that is lifted off the floor, which is cleaner and better for them.”

Pot Storage

“The key to a great kitchen is to mimic the flow of a restaurant kitchen.  We designed under stove pot and pan storage, so everything is within arm’s reach. I advise home buyers to make sure they avoid sharp edges or things you’ll bump your head into like hanging pot racks in the kitchen.” 

Microwave Oven Design

If you can, I suggest upgrading to a speed oven rather than a traditional microwave. It looks better and has more versatility.  Another option is to hide the microwave in your kitchen island.”

Functional Extras

“Because the kitchen is the hub of the house, it’s important to have functional extras designed into the space like a charging post and a storage area for cookbooks, notepads or mail so they are easily accessible but off of your counters.”

Ingredient Storage

Proper ingredient storage is the first step to achieving great tasting meals. We designed options for beverage areas and wine fridges in the island so that when you pool a drink out or open a bottle of wine, it’s ready to consume at the appropriate temperature. We also designed pull out drawers where new homeowners can drop baskets in for proper storage and easy access to dry ingredients like potatoes and onions.


“I love that we offer EVP (engineered vinyl plank) Flooring because it looks beautiful but  is also waterproof and scratch proof making it a practical choice for your kitchen.   I also advise buyers to opt for slip resistant mats in the high traffic areas of your kitchen.”

Outdoor Living Design

“When you move in, find a space and start an outdoor herb, vegetable and mushroom garden.  It’s a great way to increase your daily veggie intake – especially when we are eating at home now more than ever.” 

“Try to design your deck or patio so that it wraps around your kitchen window or door so that you have easy access to pass food through when grilling.”

“Don’t underestimate how long it takes to get your grill hot. Place your grill in the shade so you don’t overheat while cooking outdoors.”

Share this Post!

Related post