A kitchen cabinet can hold more than crockery or foodstuffs. Sometimes another world can exist inside of it.
As if The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe had been directed by a home designer, the curious can walk through this kitchen’s seemingly standard cabinetry and enter another world. On the other side of two sets of double doors of rich brown cabinetry, located between the stovetop and the built-in oven, lies a more humble world of Chinese cooking smells, the steel-pan sounds of active meal preparation and the sight of busy cooks. And it’s all hidden from those being entertained in the palatial Shaughnessy home.
It’s called a wok kitchen, and it’s built inside a regular kitchen. According to Walter Krause, the home’s builder, wok kitchens have been around for the past couple of decades in some Vancouver homes. While the “show” kitchen is equipped for cooking, some people prefer to leave all of the sights, sounds and aromas hidden behind those secret cabinetry doors.
“This is appealing to the kind of people who want to keep the mess out of the way and have their kitchen as more of a showpiece,” says Andrea Rodman, who designed the 5,400-square-foot home that houses this wok kitchen, for a family who came to Vancouver from China. […]
In addition to wanting a wok kitchen, high-end workmanship and ornate furnishings, the owners had a strong vision of the exterior they wanted. Krause points out that the house’s front is symmetrical, with each wing perfectly mirroring the other…
Rodman and Krause were able to adapt to the homeowners’ desires and they received accolades. “They were really happy and threw a big party,” says Rodman.
In fact, Krause says, the homeowners are great entertainers and every time he visited their home, he ate very well. “The homeowners were so hospitable and such gracious hosts. They always had to sit down and have lunch with you,” he says.
And the food he ate emerged from that magic world behind the cabinetry.
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PHOTOGRAPHY: JASON STATLER / STYLING: ANDREA RODMAN