A popular, modern style of table has the legs going through the table top, so that the end grain of the leg is exposed. Of course, the problem with this design immediately becomes the expansion and contraction of the table top, which would push and pull against the legs. An example of this style is the "Big Sur" dining table at Crate and Barrel. Other manufacturers make similar looking tables, which is apparently a variation of a "Parsons table" design. I've found one other discussion of the style on the web, and people were convinced manufacturers were using cleverly disguised plywood. I have seen the Big Sur table in person, and I can tell you with complete certainty that the tabletop is solid wood.
Looking under the table, there are kerfs approximately 5 inches apart, which I assume are to allow for expansion. The bottom of the tabletop is reinforced with metal brackets screwed into place. I assume this is to strengthen the tabletop due to the weakness introduced by the kerfs. The kerfs do not go all the way through the tabletop, so I assume expansion would still be a problem. Additionally, there is a 1/8" gap between the table top and the legs, which I assume is there to allow for additional expansion, but would probably also harbor food crumbs.
I have never heard of kerfing the bottom of a tabletop before. Is this a thing? Am I interpreting the design correctly? My wife and I, who rarely agree on anything, both like the aesthetics of the table. I've talked about custom building one but I'm having second thoughts. Is the table stable or is it just a bad design?