Pros: Ready for years of use. Budget and knife friendly.
Cons: Maintenance, potential for scorching from hot pans.
In the long awaited remodel of our residential kitchen I chose to install (2) John Boos Maple countertops, one on each side of the stove. This is a hard working residential kitchen. We entertain friends on a regular basis. I needed a "lifetime" countertop material, and since Granite is not "knife friendly", and twice the cost, the only logical choice was butcher block. As avid bread bakers, and eaters, there is always a loaf (or three) of fresh bread on the counter, along with a bread knife.
Now that they have been installed for a while I and my wife can honestly say we don't regret the choice one bit. Though, I still catch her pulling out a flexible cutting mat instead of cutting directly on the board, old habits die hard.
Initial install was as easy as installing any residential countertop, though one must keep in mind that the board will expand and contract with changes in humidity. Therefore it is vital to only secure it tightly on one "long-grain edge", the other edge can be lightly secured but must be allowed to move. My architect specified that it be secured along the back edge tightly with 1" long x 3/8" diameter lag bolts and fender washers and lightly through 1/2" elongated mounting holes, on the front edges to allow it to float. The folks at John Boos told us that we can expect up to 1/16" of seasonal movement.
Maintenance, is the only drawback but it is a price I am willing to pay for the durability and usability of the countertop. I applied 4 light coats of John Boos' EZ-DO Wipe-On Polyurethane Gel on the underside and the back and side edges of the block, since once it was installed I would have zero opportunity to re-oil them. The tops get a coat Boos Block Mystery Oil whenever it starts looking dry. The first few days, they soaked up a lot of oil!
Yes the pictures were taken on separate days, I don't actually own two toasters
The only other potential concern would be setting hot pan from the stove or oven directly on the wood, it could scorch. So far we have not done it, but the countertops are new, and I'm sure it will happen eventually. When it does I have a random-orbit sander out in the wood-shop to sand the blemish out.