On the Showcase pages, What's Cooking?, also in the May 2007 Log Homes Illustrated, is a beautiful Japaneses style island with sink from Greentea Design. It's made of solid, reclaimed hardwood with sliding doors and drawers that you can access from both sides. I'm not sure what the countertop is; it's metal and goes with the wood and hardware perfectly. I really love it. I've never been interested in the trendy furniture look before.
Another article on kitchens, Kickin' Kitchens, quotes a kitchen designer, Burns Century, who says that instead of the old work triangle, "we prefer to create work stations which flow in a circle with an island in the middle,". Another designer, Ines Hani, lists six kitchen zones: Hot Zone, Cold zone, Island, Breakfast zone, Beverage zone, and Office-desk zone. [I think kitchens are getting bigger.]
And there are more choices for countertops, sinks, and appliances. You can get countertops in soapstone, granite, wood, quartz, French pewter, copper, and zinc ("a beautiful alternative to stainless steel"). Sinks come in soapstone, manufactured quartz materials, copper, granite, solid bronze, and Fireclay. And there are kickplates for turning the water on. And there are more choices now in refrigerator, freezers, and stoves.