April 24, 2013

Soup to Nuts: Glimpse of divine kitchens

A tour of six beautifully designed Portland kitchens, including one in a former church, invites guests to feast their eyes while enjoying tastings and cooking demonstrations.

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The kitchen in the former Payson Park Evangelical Free Church on Ocean Avenue, now a residence, features a large, marble-covered island.

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

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Cabinets surrounding a marble backsplash and a new La Cornue range are located where the baptismal font used to be in the former church overlooking Payson Park.

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

Additional Photos Below


WHEN: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 10 and 11

WHERE: Tour begins at St. Lawrence Arts, 76 Congress St.

TICKETS: $25 online at portlandkitchentour.com or $30 at the door. Part of the proceeds benefit St. Lawrence Arts.

The white beaded-inset, raised-panel cabinetry and the countertops were all done by Maine Coast Kitchen Design. In addition to the cabinetry built into the islands, there are cabinets on the back wall, on either side of the French range, for cooking and storage.

Without much wall space, Richardson decided to install two smaller Liebherr refrigerators on either side of the cabinets.

The butler's pantry -- a handy place to put the dirty dishes and other clutter when entertaining -- contains a full farm sink made of quartz, a dishwasher and a washer-dryer.

If you like what you see, this place -- including its heated sidewalks and driveway -- is for sale, listed online at $797,000.


Pam and Peter Macomber bought their East End home two years ago and renovated the entire house.

"We've always had houses where the kitchens are adequate and big, but anytime you have a party it just gets crammed up," Pam Macomber said. "This is a party kitchen."

There's a large island for serving, and a gorgeous butler's pantry with an extra dishwasher and sink, and lots of shelves filled with glasses and dishware.

The kitchen is sleek and modern, with gray walls that reflect the color of Casco Bay on a cloudy, wintry day. The views of the bay from the large picture window are amazing, making the space the perfect spot to watch ships pass by while you drink your morning coffee.

"You can see people on the walking path, and you've got the little train," Macomber said. "We've taken our grandson on that train."

The appliances -- a stainless refrigerator with a drink drawer, and a gas stove -- are Samsung. The white-and-gray countertop on the island is Silestone.

"It looks like marble, without the hassle, the stain factor," she said, laughing.


Just around the corner from the Macombers is another East End kitchen that will be on the tour. The house is on the Eastern Prom, with a limited but beautiful view of Casco Bay from the kitchen.

"When we first arrived, this actually was your classic kitchen and dining room," said Lee Proscia of Wright-Ryan, the builder who renovated the space. "We opened this up. We did some structural modifications to the space to actually give this great view some life from the kitchen.

"We basically wanted to make it as functional a kitchen as possible for a young family," he said.

The original kitchen was dark, with a linoleum floor, laminate countertops and tired lighting. Now the countertops are granite, and the drawer pulls look like green seaglass.

A new wedge-shaped island, with granite countertop and white leather chairs, nestles perfectly in the kitchen like a thick piece of pie on a plate.

The floor is stenciled with delicate images of plants, a design that's reflected in the overhead lighting and curtains.

"When you walk through the house," Proscia said, "you don't feel like this is something that is completely ultra-modern or different than what it would have been."

Staff Writer Meredith Goad can be contacted at 791-6332 or at:


Twitter: MeredithGoad


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Additional Photos

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The owners of the renovated church on Ocean Avenue retained some of the building’s original features.

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

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Stenciled images of plants in the floor and a wedge-shaped island are among the creative touches in the kitchen of an Eastern Prom home that is on the tour.

Joel Page/Staff Photographer

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A large picture window in the modern kitchen of the Macomber home provides great views of Casco Bay.

Joel Page/Staff Photographer

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A modern kitchen in the East End has Silestone counters, which look like marble but “without the hassle,” says Pam Macomber, who owns the home with her husband Peter.

Joel Page/Staff Photographer


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