Meeting Dave White, owner of Kitchen Encounters, is like meeting your next best friend. He’s someone who, after a few moments of conversation, people warm up to quite quickly. The intent with which he listens to his clients is sincere and earnest. Above all, he really loves what he does. The award winning kitchen and bath design center has been fulfilling local homeowners’ dreams for over ten years now and Dave couldn’t be happier.
Dave grew up in Mount Joy and from an early age enjoyed working with his hands. He was mechanically minded and upon graduation, attended F&M College. He met and married his wife Danelle while working in the manufacturing sector and when they had their first child Eden, they decided to relocate to Oregon to establish their own family unit. After a year in Oregon, they embarked on a ten thousand mile road trip for three months to see the West. Dave looks back now and said it was the trip of a lifetime and that he is so glad they did it while they were young.
Dave and his family eventually made their way back to Lancaster County and settled in Willow Street. After landing a position as a sales representative for a local custom cabinet manufacturer, Dave continued to learn more about carpentry, design and custom cabinetry. He also met several highly knowledgeable and trustworthy people whom he developed friendships with. A few of these friends became Dave’s mentors and educators and eventually part of the Kitchen Encounter team.
In 2006, Dave noticed a shift in the construction market. New construction was taking a slight downturn and remodeling was becoming more of an option for homeowners. Dave felt this was the time to make the leap to business ownership, so he started an innovative and unique design/build company that is recognized today as Kitchen Encounters. Knowing that kitchens and baths are the two rooms in the home that people typically remodel the most, Dave concentrated his efforts on providing a niche market for kitchens and baths. He brought his brother Phil, an installation and finish carpenter into the business and eventually his wife Danelle, who serves as the company’s Customer Care Manager. Dave and Danelle’s children, Eden and Isaiah, have also become part of the business now that they are older. Eden handles social media and photos for the business while Isaiah is learning more about the carpentry end of the business from his Uncle Phil, who expertly installs cabinets for the company. Dave and Danelle are extremely proud of their children for taking an interest in the family business.
Kitchen Encounters is headquartered in a quaint two-story home that sits at 2603 Lititz Pike Lancaster. The address says Lancaster, but the little village that boasts several great restaurants and boutique shops surrounding the business is called Neffsville. Upon entering, you’ll be greeting instantly by an example of one of their beautiful kitchen displays. As you walk through the rooms, you’ll be impressed by the wonderful selection of cabinet doors, drawer and door hardware, countertops, wood and tile flooring samples and much more. The consultation room is a charming area with a large monitor above a fireplace mantel where Dave will show you a 3D video of your kitchen or bath project. There is so much to choose from, but this is where Dave makes it easy for his customers to make their choices. It’s all about education.
Because of Dave’s construction experience, he can economically design a kitchen or bath project according to the customer’s design and financial needs. He feels it’s important to educate his customers on what the process will entail, then provide options for the customer at a price they can afford. As Dave says on his exceptionally informative website www.lancasterkitchens.net, “all cabinetry is not created equal” and he defines the different types of cabinetry available. Kitchen Encounters also offers an outstanding selection of countertops ranging from granite and engineered stone, to concrete and cultured marble. Because the business is design/build, they can accommodate every aspect of the project from start to finish including plumbing fixtures, hardware, tubs, showers, toilets, appliances, windows, and doors just to mention a few.
There are many elements to a design/build project and again, Dave lays the process out in a simple and easy to understand timeline with his customers. One of the top commitments the business has made to their customers is providing a reasonably timed project schedule and then committing to that schedule. Danelle plays an intricate part in the process with her regular phone calls to the customer throughout the entire project. This important piece of the process is what makes the project flow smoother and lets the customer know that the team really cares about them. In Dave’s eyes, the “team” is the most important element of Kitchen Encounters. Without their many years of friendship, loyalty, expert knowledge, and commitment to quality, Dave says he would not be where he is today – happy and grateful.
Kitchen Encounters has won many awards over the past ten years. Among them were the “Best of Lancaster County Magazine” and “Best Kitchen & Bath, Parade of Homes.” They are a member of the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce, Associated Builders & Contractors, and the Building Industry Association. The business also features Paragon Construction that specializes in additions, renovations, new homes, decks, and basements. Check out the Kitchen Encounters website for more information. When I asked Dave where he saw himself and the business five or ten years from now, he said, “I would love to continue growing the business with my family. Perhaps we’ll move into a larger space and see where life takes us.” Life has taken Dave White from humble beginnings in Mount Joy to a successful family business that is known as one of the most respected companies in the area. The experiences he has encountered have turned out to be very “fine” indeed!