CaesarStone quartz surfacing is Alter’s preferred alternative to stone. Comprised of 93 percent quartz and 7 percent resin, the material resists heat, cold, stains, and scratching. The manufacturer says it’s also nonporous and impervious to mold and mildew. Alter used Concrete—one of 40 available shades—for this kitchen. CaesarStone USA, 877.978. 2789; www.caesarstoneus.com.