Elegant Granite Countertops

Dramatic natural stone benchtops that make a unique design statement.

Working with natural stone enables you to create a one of a kind kitchen in the age of mass production. Granite is an igneous rock formed by the slow crystallization of magma below the surface of the earth, so no two pieces are alike. This remarkable stone comes in an enormous range of colours and vein types ranging from the classic pink and grey crystalline structure to dramatic black and white stone with flowing veins which echoes the flowing lava that formed the granite millions of years ago. Known as a ‘prestige material’ granite has been used for thousands of years in architecture and is known in the industry for its durability, lasting quality and elegant appearance.

Granite benchtop colours

When we think of granite, we generally think of a rock which is a mixture of pink, white grey and black grains. However, the colour of granite is determined by the proportions of different minerals present in the molten rock which slowly cooled to create the stone. Six key different minerals (quartz, feldspar, potassium feldspar, biotite, muscovite and amphibole) mix together produce a veritable rainbow of different granite colours ranging from milky white to metallic gold and even blue or dark green. Some granite mineral combinations are even common enough to have earnt their own names like Giallo Ornamental granite which is partly metamorphosed and is characterized by white colouring and an elegant, swirl texture or Volga Blue granite which has an iridescent blue colour.

Countertop finishing options

Granite countertops also come in a wide range of finishing options which not only affect the appearance of the stone, but also change surface tendencies like how vulnerable it is to staining. Some of the most popular finishing options include:

Honed, buffed or matte finish
A smooth, matte finish which has a much flatter appearance than polished granite. This finish is commonly used for floors to add traction but it can also be used for countertops. However, this finish will make your granite more vulnerable to staining and can diminish the natural colour of the stone.
Leathered or brushed finish
A newer finish option which adds texture to the granite in the form of subtle dimples. This finish is very practical as it is stain resistant and also conceals both water marks and smudges.
Polished finish
An unusual finish characterized by a rough texture with a natural, faded appearance. This option is popular for outdoor benches due to its water resistance.
Bush hammered finish
This is another textured option which can be used to achieve the appearance of naturally weathered rock.

Cleaning and maintaining a granite benchtop

As granite is a porous stone, a sealant needs to be applied to ensure the stone is protected from materials which may take away from its appearance and impact it’s lifespan. To protect the sealant, avoid using acid based cleaners (lemon, orange, bleach or vinegar based) as these can cause staining. To clean your granite, all you need is warm water, a small amount of dish soap, and a towel for drying.

Disinfecting granite
To disinfect your granite, fill a spray bottle with equal parts isopropyl alcohol and distilled water then thoroughly spray the countertop and leave it to sit for 2-3 minutes before wiping it down.
Removing stains from your benchtop
For oil based stains, create a paste of baking soda and water then slather the paste over the stain, cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit until the paste is dry. Once dry, wipe away the paste with a warm wash cloth and a little dish soap. For water based stains, follow the same process but use a paste made up of equal parts hydrogen peroxide and baking soda.

Build a unique kitchen with quality materials that are custom cut and finished to suit your needs and taste. Get in touch with the team at Stone Design Group by calling 03 9498 3444.