The first is that most of us are craving a more organized life and by extension, a more organized home. A little room filled with storage cabinets, in which all of one's china, stemware, linens, and silverware can be neatly and beautifully organized, epitomizes the ideal of an organized home.
I think the other reason a Butler's Pantry appeals to so many people is that at it's very basic level it signifies having and sharing abundance. And that if you have stacks of dishes and rows of glassware, you would have the ability to graciously entertain your family and friends, thereby sharing the abundance you have with your loved ones.
This butler's pantry by McKim Mead and White is to me the quintessential Butler's Pantry. The tall ceilings and endless cabinets and shelving are fabulous. The integration of cabinetry and paneling is seamless. Of course this is a huge room, definitely big enough to be a modern kitchen.
This is a Butler's Pantry which was recently completed. We made the arched opening really large so it would feel like an extension of the Dining Room. The owners wanted to be able to entertain in both spaces. We didn't have high ceilings to work with, but we wanted to integrate the cabinets and paneling.
We often install mirrors in the paneling at the backsplash to add a little sparkle to the Butler's Pantries which double as wet bars. Below we made the best of a really small passage between a Kitchen and a Dining Room.
This red Butler's Pantry is a counterpoint to a white kitchen. The cabinet at the far end of the room houses stereo equipment and is on wheels for easy access to the power cords.
This is a Kitchen we designed to have the feel of an old Butler's Pantry. We put the cabinets right up to the 10' ceilings. We used the old fashioned latches, glass cabinets, wood brackets, and a beaded board ceiling to help create the feeling of another era.