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May 19, 2014 02:31 PM

Cutting board--buyer's remorse? BooS or End Grain Martha

Hi all!

I'm settling into my new place and ordered a few new linens from Macy's during a sale last week. In my excitement I thought, hell, let me grab a nice big sturdy cutting board too.

This is the one I nabbed:

And then I remembered this guy:

Have I made a horrible wrong decision?!?

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  1. <Have I made a horrible wrong decision?!?>

    I wouldn't say so, depending on the thickness of your board. I've owned both edge- and end-grain boards in my 40 years of cooking. Both have performed very well, although I am partial to end grain.

    The only board that ever warped or split was a thinnish (1"?) edge-grain. I don't blame the strand orientation, just the thickness of the board. My current portable board (my island is topped with Boos edge grain maple) is an acacia edge grain, 2" thick. It's 6 years old and feels like velvet. I treat it like shit, oiling it maybe once a year, washing and rinsing it in the sink, propping it up to dry, etc... It sits perfectly flat.

    A 4"x36" Boos edge-grain maple block sat in a dedicated cutout in my granite counter in my last home. It stayed dead flat.

    1. Not the end of the world. What kind of knives do you use?
      I honestly prefer those rubber sani-tuff style boards but I understand the appeal of wood.

      2 Replies
      1. re: EatFoodGetMoney

        Oh, I use victorinox. I strongly prefer wood boards--naturally antimicrobial and age beautifully if they're well-kept.

        1. re: ericabakescakes

          You should be fine then, Boos is probably better but they'll probably perform similarly.

          Someday we'll all have Boardsmith Boards hah.

      2. I think I also feel weird because the Martha board makes no mention whatsoever of what kind of wood it uses, or how it is finished. I also can't seem to find any real reviews of it anywhere. I don't know too much about carpentry, but it makes me a bit nervous that this end-grain board is made from tiny tiny bits of wood. Seems less than ideal.

        On the other hand, BooS is more candid about materials and is a widely-respected brand for cutting boards. Plus, it doesn't hurt that I've got $40 of credit at Amazon right now. And it's more spacious. I don't know.

        6 Replies
        1. re: ericabakescakes

          How thick is your Martha board? It looks like bamboo to me. Is that a possibility?

          1. re: DuffyH

            it makes me a bit nervous that this end-grain board is made from tiny tiny bits of wood. Seems less than ideal.

            Duffyh could be right, it might be bamboo, doesn't look like any maple board I've ever seen(it could be and they used a ton of glue to hold it together which is not ideal) and if it is it'll wreak havoc on your knives.

            1. re: petek

              I think it's bamboo because I don't see any curve, only dots (vertical "veins"). This makes me think bamboo, which doesn't have curved grain to my knowledge.

          2. re: ericabakescakes

            If you can easily return the Macys one then I would definitely do it. If it's a huge pain you may wanna keep it. For what it's worth, cooking stuff at Macys is not the best quality, and the prices are pretty poor. You're paying for the name, and for retail space and employees. You will almost definitely get a better value with another brand from a different store/purveyor.

            1. re: EatFoodGetMoney

              This is what I'm thinking. I can return this sucker to the store. I'm less than thrilled with all the bits and pieces it's made out of.

              1. re: EatFoodGetMoney

                I don't shop at Macy's so can't speak to prices, but for quality? Well, they carry All-Clad. And a Catskill maple cutting board. Also Staub and Le Creuset.

            2. Wood products can be difficult to predict since they are made from natural products. I have seen people who spend >$100 or even >$200 for their cutting boards and the boards split or cracked on them.

              I have an inexpensive $10-15 cutting board from H-Mart. I bought it just for fun to evaluate and it has hold on very well in the last two years without any signal of problems.

              Your Martha board actually looks like a bamboo end grain board, which isn't a bad thing, but I just want to say that it may be a bamboo board and not wood.

              Here is the bottomline. Let the board speaks for itself. As long as the board stays intact for the next year, then it is a good buy.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                Ya, if you know you can use it for a year and take it back to Macys if it isn't a good board, I'd do that. Not sure how they are with returns though so i can't speak to that.

                1. re: EatFoodGetMoney

                  Ah, good point. If Erica can still return the board to Macy's, then by all means she can. If she cannot, then I won't worry too much about this. I have seen very expensive cutting boards which break and very cheap boards which survive.

                  These are my two cheap cutting boards and they have been working great ($13 and $40 respectively)



              2. Have you made a wrong decision? IMO yes. I wouldn't buy anything with Martha's name on it, it's always Chinese junk. You are paying for Martha's name and not one cent for quality. If it's bambo as it appears, it's not the best for your knives, but it isn't going to ruin them either.
                Obviously you wish you had the other board, and I don't blame you. If you can return it, I would. If you can't, it's not the end of the world.