Return of the Kitchen Larder

In pre-fridge days, back when your grandma’s grandma and her grandma’s grandma were wee, kitchen larders were as common as dirt. Without refrigeration, these storage spaces provided the next best thing—a cool, clean area that could extend the shelf life of food. Generally, the larder would be near the kitchen and on the side of the home that got the least direct sunlight. If it were a cabinet-style larder, it would be equipped with shelves and cupboards. Little windows covered in fine mesh would be incorporated, to fend off flies while allowing for circulation of air. If it were a room-style larder or even a detached larder, it might also have insulated containers of ice, and ceiling hooks for hanging game.

Vintage Larder
Photo credit: The Wood Shed

With the advent of the fridge, larders went the way of the dodo. But today, they’re enjoying a renaissance. Actually, because of the fridge, today’s larders are more of a hybrid between the modern-day pantry and the olden-days larder. They need not be concerned with direction of sunlight, since they aren’t storing things like meat (thank goodness). However, they do often have a “cold shelf,” which is a shelf made from a material that tends to stay cool, such as slate or marble. Doors are usually lined with shelves to keep smaller items from becoming lost. Many modern-day larders have small holes in the doors to allow for air circulation. All can store a broad range of food in drawers and pull-out baskets, and on shelves and racks.


It’s possible to buy a pre-fabricated larder, but there’s nothing like a custom one. When the larder is made to your own specifications, you get the look and functionality that perfectly suits your needs. Some people want a big walk-in. Some want more of a cabinet design. A built-in larder is top-of-the-line and drastically ups the gourmet factor of a kitchen. Beautiful, functional, and uncommon—the larder is making its comeback. It’s the new “must have” for kitchens. And we can specially designed and create one that’s just right for your home, boasting the beauty of custom millwork and the longevity of old-world craftsmanship!

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