We moved into a 1960s ranch and are about to do a kitchen remodel that will involve removing a wall between the existing kitchen and a family room. The FR is currently paneled with the tongue-in-groove knotty pine paneling that was so popular in the 1960s. In general, the paneling is in good shape, and we don't want to remove it. But it is going to need some kind of help to make it work with the new honey-finished cherry cabinets we've got coming. This will be a very informal room, with slate floors and a brick fireplace.

So for the paneling, I'm thinking that we may want to
a) Sand it down and apply stain; or
b) Do a pickled finish; or
c) Paint over it

I cannot find anything on TOH regarding options like this for paneling. Have any of you done this and were you pleased with the result? If so, what methods did you use? Have you even SEEN something that worked well with this type of paneling?

Thanks for any responses.