Derek Cohen (in Perth, Australia)
Every kitchen remodel replicates the overall arc of biological evolution: from simple to complex. You're just lucky you didn't have to go back to the studs, as we did in our kitchen remodel.
From a literal point, I could not go back to studs. Here in Western Australia, all building is double brick exterior walls and solid brick internal walls. This means that plumbing is more work and expense to move.
In all, I simply removed the cabinets over the old range hood (it slid out from under those cabinets), and the cabinet to its right. The aim was to reduce the cluttered, enclosed look. I had to do a great deal of persuading to convince Lynndy that the lack of symmetry would not look odd. I could visualise the end effect, and she could not. I am pleased she trusted me, and in the end when all was done, she agreed it was the right decision (not to replace those cabinets).
So, our remodel was much less work than your remodel, thanks to the building codes in WA.
Regards from Perth