Please help me pick a good package for this budget

pbx2_gwMay 29, 2012

We are building & our budget allowance is around $8K.

Would like (all stainless):

1) Gas Range

2) Speed Oven

3) Fridge

4) Dishwasher

Can some of you experts put a quality package together for this budget?

Building around a 30" gas range would be ideal.

Also, We're not informed about DW & Fridge quality.

Or alternatively, a different strategy than above & thinking out of the box would be also welcomed!

Thanks for any insights!

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Bluestar RCS Range $2900

Kobe Range Hood RA0236SQBRA02DC $1400

GE Advantium 220 $2000

Samsung Fridge RS261MDPN $1000

Bosch Ascenta Dishwasher SHX3AR75UC $680

Total $7980

Building around a gas range,a good one,requires getting a good range hood too. Ask your general contractor about makeup air regulations.In some areas this can impede what kind of range hood you can use.

The upgraded Bluestar range that is heavily discussed on this forum,the RNB, is ~$4300 and you can use the same hood.This particular hood has very good capture area to trap grease and steam. Some people will say you don't need that much power. But you could use it on low and it will be quiet. As opposed to getting a lower powered hood and using it at max power. That will be LOUD.

You could get the Advantium that uses 120 volts insead of 220 but it would only be half as fast but would save $500. If you are getting a speed oven you want one that is FAST IMO.

The main task of the kitchen is cooking. I would spend the bulk of the money there. Cooking appliances. Get a cold box that won't break and dish cleaning box that won't break and won't bother the ears.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bluestar RCS

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 3:27PM
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Excellent suggestions, Dee. I would add that some judicious shopping around will net you an RNB Bluestar for less money if you look around. There is a striking floor sample on ebay right now for 4000. If you have the price-hound gene in you, you can find floor demos or examples in liquidator's inventory that may allow you to have the best.

I would urge getting the RNB if you can because of the big burners. They are outstanding.

You may also find a better deal on a hood by looking around. If you find such a deal, I would use the extra money to upgrade the dishwasher to an 800 plus model Bosch.

If you play your cards right you could end up with a spectacularly performing appliance suite, but you will not get it by taking the first deal the appliance salesman offers. You will have to hunt. I hunted, and it was well worth it. Deeageaux, our local pricemeister, has a gift for such things and may be able to help you if you decide to hunt down a specific item. Best of luck to you.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 4:02PM
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Thank you deeageaux & mojavean for your kind input.

Seems like the Advantium is a consensus by most on this forum for speed cooking value/performance ratio.

& of course Bosche, I've seen mentioned several times here for DW's.

However, I am surprised that the Sammy fridge was mentioned.
I always suspected that Sammy was underwhelming in quality here?

& I guess - a Wolf is out of the question if the BS are so often mentioned?

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 10:13PM
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That's a matter of priority and taste, re: Wolf v. Bluestar. I think the Wolf is a beautiful, elegant, range, better in terms of fit and finish than the Bluestar RNB. The Bluestar is more like a commercial range, fully open burners, bigger BTUs, bigger oven, and not as refined as the Wolf. Your tastes should guide you on that front. But I would by no means eliminate the Wolf. They are an excellent range. You just need to go see them in person and try them out.

The Samsung refrigerators have dual evaporators - one for the freezer and one for the fridge - which eliminates the need to have a circulating fan blowing freezer air into the fresh food side, the way most consumer refrigerators keep the fresh food cold. This allows for truly independent temp control and better humidity management in the refrigerator. Yes, there are horror stories about Samsung. But there are horror stories about every refrigerator made. By in large, I do not think a Samsung is a bad choice for a home refrigerator.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 11:47PM
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JD Powers has ranked Samsung #1 overall for freestanding SxS and FD fridges for five years.

The three most recommended high dollar fridges mentioned here on the forum; Sub-Zero,Thermador,and Liebherr you could find horror stories about all of them if you research enough.

IF your main goal in buying a gas range is buying the best cooking tool then I would eliminate Wolf. IF your main goal in buying a gas range is looking at it enamorously and showing it off to friends then I would not eliminate Wolf from consideration.

If you want high function and high fit & finish look at the Capital Culinarian. Smaller oven than the BS and IMO not quite as good looking in the 30" size but an extemely good cooking tool. A bit more money than the BS though.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2012 at 12:17AM
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I appreciate the honest feedback from you both!

Wolf is the wife's idea despite being great cook. LOL!
I would rather go bang for the buck like BS.
Had seen BS mentioned often in past thread topics.
Never was opened minded about them but now will revisit it again.

As for Sammy - also worth my time now to dig a bit more.
Any thoughts on Kitchen Aid or Whirlpool DW's & Fridges?

    Bookmark   May 30, 2012 at 12:39AM
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There is nothing wrong with the Wolf gas range. It too has an infrared broiler, is American made, and of very high quality. The twin-ring burners are individually more versatile than the Bluestar Ultranova 22K burners. Bluestar compensates for this by providing an 8K simmer burner for holding sauces and the like. It works great. The Capital Culinarian burners are a bit more powerful than the Bluestars, but some folks think they are too hot to hold delicate sauces without worry. I know I would never try to hold a hollandaise or chile con queso over my hotrodded Bluestar burner. That isn't what it is for. The big burners are for getting the pan very hot and keeping it hot no matter what you put in it. When it comes to that chore, The BS and CC are tops. I like the Bluestar, but that's because it's what I have and I like the bowl/grate setup much more than the CC's ring burners. To use my wok, all I do is pull the grate off and the wok sits right over the fire, nesting in the bowl.

I also like having the simmer burner, which is in the left rear on my setup and is truly a "back burner." One of our intrepid members here, Billy_G, modified one of his CC burners to allow for painless simmers and holds. You can read that saga here.

RE your other questions, Kitchenaid fridges and dishwashers have lots of good reviews, a few bad ones, just like everything else. Some people swear by the KA dishwashers, but there have been quite a few reports of fires/heat damage due to water getting into the control panels on them. I haven't really kept up with that issue, but I think there is a class-action lawsuit pending on it. In any case, I am personally a fan of the German dishwashers overall. I like how they are laid out, how they clean, and I just don't really care that much about the American-style. I think the ultimate dishwasher is probably the Miele; it's quality is far and away better than competing models (just go look at one, but bring your checkbook! They are expensive!) The Bosches don't quite meet the Miele standard, but the 800+ line can be found at substantial savings and are a very competent runner up.

Anyway, so much of this decision rests on your personal tastes and priorities that there really is NO right answer other than the one you make for yourselves. But I do think Deeageaux provided an excellent list of suggestions as a starting point. Best of luck on whatever you decide.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2012 at 12:14PM
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