I'm in the process of remodeling my own kitchen, and found an enormous variety of prices for very similar items. Some sinks - European brands, mostly - were ridiculously expensive, when the exact same sink (in this case, an enormous 36" stainless steel apron-fron) was 1/2 the price or less from an American vendor. I took a closer look - the metal looked the same, it was the same weight and construction, and was probably built at the same factory by the same people!
You really do need to shop around, and don't let your contractor suggest an expensive item when you can find the exact same thing for a fraction of the price. I found my beautiful sink from Matt Roberts' Lavello Sinks and really couldn't be happier with the sink or the service. Matt is a commercial contractor and property manager who found a great source for sinks that would otherwise go for $1500; he realized that there was a huge need for affordable but good quality stainless sinks, and I'm sure that his business will thrive. His prices are far better than anything else I've found elsewhere, and the shipping was super-fast and very affordable. If every transaction and interaction I had to engage with over the course of this remodel was as pleasant, painless (and, again, affordable) as my interaction with Matt, it sure would make the whole process a lot easier!
Once my kitchen is done - I'm thinking we're about eight weeks away - I'll post pictures of the sink installation and the finished project. Until then, if you're looking for a pretty and modern stainless sink that works very well with an historic kitchen, check him out, and tell him I sent you!