Undermount or topmount? Apron or non-apron? Deep or shallow? Two basin or single basin? Stainless or fireclay?
I cannot make up my mind. I have had plenty of two basin sinks, so when we did our full gut kitchen remodel in our last house in 2005, I went for a large single basin undermount (it was some sort of white acrylic). I loved how it held so many dishes, and I could soak anything in there. It was huge. But hand washing dishes required a separate plastic dish pan (which, thankfully, came with the sink and was a perfect fit). And since we cook at home all day, we always have a lot of hand wash dishes (pots/pans, plastics, etc.) in addition to what goes in the dishwasher.
I am leaning toward a single basin because I love the versatility. I am also leaning toward a medium depth, as too deep is too far for this short gal to reach without back trouble. (Of course, right now, I can’t reach any sink, shallow or not, with this big belly. I get water all over myself!)
Another important factor is the countertops. We are doing butcher block (IKEA, used them in 2005 and loved them) oiled with pure tung oil or Osmo Polyx Oil for at least part of the kitchen. I haven’t decided if we’ll do the sink run with butcher block as well, because it will be a 12′ run, and IKEA doesn’t make them that long. I hate the idea of a seam. Last time, we did an undermount in the wood countertop and it was lovely. Functional, pretty, and very water resistant if sealed well and maintained. We never had trouble with water damaging the wood, even at the faucet. If we skip butcher block for the sink run, our only real option (budget-wise) is laminate, which will require a top mount.
So. Here are the sinks I am considering. What would you choose?
Sink A: IKEA DOMSJO single basin sink, 24″ wide, full counter depth. About $185, which is such a steal for this great fireclay farmhouse sink. (See the same sink in the farmhouse kitchen photo above. Isn’t it cute there?) No cutout needed for the countertop. It’s huge but not over powering, and the interior dimensions are big enough for all of my big pots and pans (I measured!). A little smaller than I initially thought I wanted, but for my small kitchen, it’s just the right size. It’s depth is not quite 8″, so it might be perfect (not too shallow, not too deep). I love that I wouldn’t have to worry about water on the front and back of the sink, just the two sides. Easy to use with butcher block. Would require a dish pan for hand washing.
Sink B: Topmount single basin from MR Direct. The actual bowl is a little over 29″ wide, and over 16″ front to back, with an 8″ depth. Pretty perfect. Only $75! Can’t beat that. For a little more money, you can get a custom-fit stainless sink grid to protect the bottom from scratches. The only thing I don’t like is that it’s topmount; I kind of hate all the seams. Same problem as Sink A, but more pronounced with all four sides surrounded by countertop. Lots of crumb-catching ridges. Requires sink cutout. This would work best with laminate.
Sink C: Huge single basin undermount with zero radius corners (that means square instead of round, more room in the basin for big stuff) and it comes with all those accessories for the price (which is much higher than anything else I’ve looked at so far – well over $300). This one is from Galaxy Tool Supply, which has lots of great sinks at great prices (considering similar sinks usually cost twice as much), but many are backordered. This particular one is in stock. This one is 10″ deep, and with an undermount, it would be as much as 11.5″ deep. Too deep for me! Great for hiding all those dirty dishes, but not nice on my back.
Sink D: Another nice one from MR Direct. This one is a single basin undermount for $109. You can upgrade to a thicker 16 gauge stainless for $119 total, but the 18 gauge is also very thick and good quality for a kitchen. It’s 10″ deep, but otherwise the same dimensions as the topmount above. Too deep for me, but nice for hiding dirty dishes. Matching sink grid available. We could undermount this in butcher block if we can overcome the 12′ counter length or reconcile ourselves to a seam.