All in Good Taste
Ideas for Using Concrete Countertops in Restaurants
By Anne Balogh, ConcreteNetwork.com columnist
Aside from the menu, what really makes a good restaurant stand out is the decor. More restaurateurs are discovering that concrete countertops are a great way to customize their interiors and give them greater ambiance. They might use a distinctive color that matches the restaurant's logo or they may embed items in the countertop that represent the restaurant's offerings, such as melted-down beer bottles. Even the shape of a concrete countertop can be tailored to reflect the specialty of the house, such as a teahouse countertop shaped like a teacup. Concrete countertops can also be made in any size and length to accommodate parties ranging from just a few people to large groups of 20 or more. From a practical standpoint, concrete is the perfect tabletop for serving food. When protected by a sealer, it's waterproof, stain resistant, a cinch to clean, and has no open seams that can collect dirt and crumbs. See how these dining spots are using concrete countertops to reflect their character and good taste.
- Restaurant Gets a Concrete Makeover
This large Z-shaped countertop and bar was cast-in-place without any seams as part of a total restaurant remodel that also included a colored concrete floor overlay and a large tree stump made of concrete in the entryway. The countertop features a rustic broken-slate edge and was dyed in shades of gold, burnt sienna, eggplant, sandstone and dark walnut.
- A Craving for Concrete
The 11-foot dining countertop at the Crave Restaurant in Castle Rock, Colo. is colored a vibrant orange to match the color of the restaurant's logo. A custom mold was used to build the countertop in one piece, without seams. Another concrete countertop, seeded with recycled glass, was made for the ice cream service area at Crave.
- Super-Sized Taco Bar
For this mammoth 65-foot-long precast concrete bartop at a new Taco Mac restaurant in Douglasville, Ga., actual beer and liquor bottles were melted down and embedded in the surface. The bartop also incorporates the Taco Mac logo as well as a hand-drawn free-flowing ribbon, running from one end of the bartop to the other, using colors that matched the interior decor of the restaurant.
- Countertop for Pub Grub
The Surly Goat, a West Hollywood bar specializing in craft beer, serves it up on a custom concrete countertop cast in a curved shape to encourage a convivial atmosphere. Because the bar serves handcrafted American microbrews and artisan Belgian beers, the owners wanted a bar surface to reflect the artisinal quality of the beers, something handcrafted and made locally. The 25-foot-long bartop was cast in place in three separate sections and reinforced with wire mesh mats. Multiple layers of sealers and protective finishes protect the bar from food and beer stains.
- Time for Tea
At designer Fu-Tung Cheng's Teance Tea Shop in Berkeley, Calif., the bar is shaped to match a tea cup. This curved shape is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also provides space for the knees of seated patrons. Watch this video by Fu-Tung describing how the countertop was made