Grill or griddle and what size???

cturnrdJuly 10, 2011


I am new to this forum, but have been reading many of your posts during the last several weeks as I'm in the process of having a new kitchen built!

I think I have finally narrowed down many of my initial decisions and now need to tackle some of the details!

I am looking at a freestanding range (hopefully 48" will fit into our kitchen design plan since the range top and wall oven combo did not) and I think I'm set on the Wolf 48" AG (also took me a while to decide on AG vs. duel fuel).

I've been reading posts and trying to research the burners/grill/griddle arrangement and I'm still confused. We live in So. Cal and have a very nice outdoors grill and I've been reading a lot about the indoor grill being very hard to clean. That doesn't appeal to me as I'd like lower maintenance but I love grilled foods! Is it as hard to clean as what I've read previously (some of the posts are from a while back).

Looking at the griddle and I'm not a big breakfast person (pancakes, etc) but I'm guessing you can do a lot of different things with a griddle? I make hot panini sandwiches all the time- I could do that on a griddle right? Is the griddle much easier to clean? Also, if I go griddle is 12" enough or should I go for 4 burners and 24" griddle?

Decisions, Decisions. Deciding on the range was hard enough! I appreciate your help!

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I will respond to two things about brand and also grill/griddle.

I had searched this to death and decided to go with Capital (look into them they will be a lot better performance compared to Wolf). Also look at blustar as a second.

As for grill vs griddle.

I am looking to get a 36" rangetop. I had initially liked the idea of having a grill on it for few reasons.
- During winter months one can grill inside and high heat will ensure proper searing for steaks, seafood etc.
- Another reason for a grill would be that a whole 12 x 18?" area produces somewhat even heat and can be used to put bigger pans on it to maximize heat.
- One can also purchase a griddle and put it on top of the grill and have a 2in1 cooking surface.

I personally have decided against a grill mainly because if i am using the grill i will be using most of the surface and the type of smoke and flareups i will get i would need a air make up unit.

Also i am not a fan of having burner grill burner scenario in my situation.

I will probably get a good outdoor grill and get 6 burner configuration.

In your case if you did want grill vs griddle depending on what you cook and what you will use more get that... but know that a grill can be "jimmyd" to be a griddle.
Also if you are getting a grill or a griddle i would invest in a heavy duty VENT. 24-27" atleast 6" wider than your cooking area.

In a 48 inch you can get Burner grill/griddle burner burner or you can get double grill/griddle. I would try to keep grill/griddle away from the edges.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 11:38PM
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So far I've been happy enough with my old cast iron set-on-top-of-the-grills griddle. It doesn't quite fill the whole two burners of a capital and so it's not as efficient as a made-to-fit griddle. However, it's more versatile: I can easily move it to where I want it. For example I can place it across two front burners for dd's to access more easily. I'm not tied to which burners are dedicated to grilling. And I get 6 burners when I need them. More versatile in my books.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 11:47PM
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We just ordered a 36" pro style range and struggled with this also but in the end decided to go with the 6 burners and just use our own griddle on top of them.

As mentioned above versatility was the key for us. However, 48" gives you more options.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 9:21AM
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FWIW, we recently purchased an A/C griddle pan (really great sale price, coupon, gift card--how could I resist? LOL). I am really enjoying having/using it. I have my 6 burners when I need them, and a nice size griddle, too (we got the grande griddle pan).

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 9:54AM
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I would go with a 14X23" steel griddle personally.
It is big enough to do about anything you need to do on it and if need be you can just take it off easily and hang it on a pot hanger or store in a cabinet.
The larger 4 burner griddles are VERY heavy and hard to store anywhere.
The steel griddle after you spend about 1 hour of smokey seasoning is 100% non-stick, is bigger than any cast iron griddles I have seen.
I keep mine on my range top 98% of the time because I use it virtually everyday, great for burgers, omelets, panini, obviously pancakes, hash browns. For the most part you can use for anything that you would use a cast iron skillet for.
The best by far are these "Chef King Griddles"

Here is a link that might be useful: Chef king Griddles

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 10:09AM
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It's hard to know ahead of time what you will really want. Our current range has a swappable grate/griddle, but in 3 years of owning it I've never needed it to be anything but a griddle. My #1 use of the griddle is to make quesadillas/tacos, and I like not having to take out a pan or anything. If I want to grill, it's 10' away outside. The griddle can always be used like a simmer plate as well, if I really am cooking a bunch of things. I'm looking forward to having a thermostat controlled griddle, which is an advantage of a built-in one.

However, that's just how I cook. Each person has their own style. I'm going to get a 36" with 4 burners and a griddle (probably Capital Cul).

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 8:19PM
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I will be installing my 60 in Wolf DF, and if I could have chosen, I would have chosen the double griddle. However, as my range is a floor model, it has both the grill and the griddle. Here is what I plan to do on each of them...maybe this can help you.

Sauté veggies
Grilled cheese
Chicken breasts
Any meat that does not require a reduction

Sear meats
Grilled haloumi cheese
Grilled veggies
Grilled seafood/ meat, especially when I only need a little and don't want to run back and forth between the outside grill and kitchen

Most people seem to prefer the griddle.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 9:41PM
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Thank you for the responses! I'm back to indecision regarding the range now! I think it will be 48" with 6 burners and single griddle since we can grill year round outdoors here. But now I'm back to deciding on range brand!

Just when I thought I was set on the Wolf. To be honest, I was initially interested in finding a range that came in color options but then thought Wolf seemed the most reliable choice with the most solid reputation but I'm seeing most posts and favorable opinions on Blue Star and especially Capital. I live in San Diego and from what I can tell none of the major appliance stores here sell Capital and that concerns me from a service and repair standpoint.

One store sells Blue Star, but I've seen some posts on the oven door being hot and also I'm not 100% certain on fit and finish. I'm no gourmet chef but I like to cook...not sure if I really need that much of a powerhouse! :)

Are there no fans of Wolf anymore? What is the problem with Wolf?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 4:28PM
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I ordered 6 burners and grill on my Culinarian range as there is a griddle pan that fits perfectly over the grill, makes griddling clean-up easier and allows me the flexibility to do quick grill sears of meats and veggies w/o having to fire up the outdoor BBQ (although I hear the heat-up time for full heat on the grill can be up to 20 mins).

The other factor I considered when choosing the grill was that i'd be investing in a powerful venting system anyway, so if i wanted to add a built-in griddle elsewhere in my kitchen later, I could do so w/o the need for another venting system (obviously not the case w/ a grill).

Responded to your other post as respects Wolf vs. others.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 5:38PM
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You need to find out the venting requirements that your location has, as well as the manufacturer's requirements for venting. Many municipalities are requiring makeup air for fans above 400BTU, and 400 BTU will barely be enough for a "regular" range. Ventilation is often a last minute decision and receives little thought when it should be thought of as the eggs that go with the bacon. And it may be a lot more expensive than you are budgeting for, thus reducing your budget for other appliances.

In SoCal, there's no way you need a grill. You can grill outside 99% of the time with no weather interference. It's iffy on the griddle too, because you can always use a griddle pan. Which brings up the point of why you picked a 48" range? You surely don't need 8 burners going at once, do you? The two ovens? You can probably fit a second oven or speed oven under counter elsewhere. You could gain an additional foot or two of cabinet storage space plus lower your appliance costs if you reassessed your actual cooking needs vs. wants.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 6:45PM
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BFF, what is the griddle that fits perfectly on the Culinarian grill? My range was just delivered and want to buy the Lodge cast iron griddle from Amazon but not sure which size fits best. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2011 at 9:34PM
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Usually MUA isn't an issue until around 600CFM but best to check with the city and county for building codes. In many cases, a passive shuttered air source in the kitchen is all you need to meet code. In very cold climates, it may be necessary to heat the air coming in to meet code.

Regarding griddles... built in griddles have one important difference. They are usually temperature controlled which is what makes them better than add on griddle tops. For most people a griddle topper is fine and frankly all they've ever used. Once you've used a real temp controlled griddle however, you'll appreciate the ease and even results. Even though I enjoy cooking on a griddle, I chose to go with a grill since I knew I'd use it more.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2011 at 5:21AM
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I apologize but haven't purchased my griddle yet as my range has not been delivered yet. I believe I recall someone telling me one of the Lodge griddles fits well. I suggest checking with Trevor Lawson at Eurostoves. He is the one who showed me how the griddle fits, but I don't recall what brand/size it was. He'll know.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 2:44AM
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Every cast iron griddle I have seen is really designed to be used on a "Campstove" like an old 2 Burner Coleman.

If you want a griddle to FIT your gas stove at home then look into steel griddles from Chef King, they are 14X23" which fits most any range top perfectly.
I have an old lodge cast iron griddle, used it on my old electric range we just replaced and it was several inches too small even for that stove.
Fits my Coleman campstove perfectly though.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 9:43AM
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This is a horrible picture but gives you an idea of size.
My Lodge cast iron I could get at best 2 eggs and ONE croissant and that would be a squeeze.
I can actually get 6 Jumbo eggs and 2 Croissants on the Chef King if I squeeze 3 eggs across by putting one in each corner and then one in the center dropped down about an inch or so.
The Lodge doesn't even cover both burners properly.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 10:16AM
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I will be of no help-Sorry. We ae moving to our last house very soon and we like to cook. My wife uses a Wok and I use everything. We are in the Pac NW on the water and the wind gets interesting off the water in winter. I have used a 48" Dacor cook top for 15 yrs and have never had any trouble. I bought a large 36 " electric griddle this year but it lacks something and is a pain to get out. We are downsizing to 2100 sq ft, and won't have extra space. Our kitchen is not huge but good enough, it has a 30" Jenn aire piece of junk in it and a cheap GE built-in 27" range. I will have to cut out the granite to put in a new range and wonder if I want a grill or griddle. I babble-please forgive me.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2012 at 10:14PM
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One of our main goals was to get an indoor grill so we could grill year-round (it gets cold in the mountains). After looking at all the major pro ranges and rangetops, we decided on a 48" rangetop with 24" grill. The smaller 12" grills just didn't seem to have enough grill area, especially if we were to cook for guests. We have now used the grill numerous times and it was the right decision for us.

Two things -

Range Hood: you will need a good range hood to remove the HOGS. We have a 1200cfm blower and about 3/4 speed on our variable blower is usually all that's needed - but we have had it on full speed when we got pans too hot. External blowers usually produce much less noise than internal blowers so if you have space external is really nice.

Cleaning: If you use aluminum foil in the grill area and pans its not bad. We found that cooking in the center of the grill results in grease droppings only in the center and we can then clean periodically by only replacing a few pieces of foil instead of the entire grill area. The other thing is cleaning the hood. When grilling, blackening, wok, etc - lots of grease can collect in the range hood. We have baffle filters and just put them in the dishwasher to clean and then just wipe down the inside of the hood. Its amazing how much grease will collect in the baffle filters when cooking that creates lots of smoke, etc. It is way more than we had expected so a good hood/filter is really needed.

Would I buy a 24" grill again - absolutely.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2012 at 8:43AM
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We have had the 60in Wolf for 5+ yrs. Love the griddle, use it a lot, lot, the grill also, but use it less as we live in SoCal so can BBQ outdoors most of the time and it is a bit of a pain to clean. Also the grill is a bit on the smaller side so I use it more when cooking for just the 2 of us. With larger quantities I use the much larger outdoor grill.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2012 at 9:04AM
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We're going to try the aluminum foil that racmrc talks about. There's a demo on Youtube for the CC.

Let me just say that we cooked on the grill BEFORE seeing that video, and it was a PITA to clean.

Here is a link that might be useful: Eurostoves Culinarian Grill Cleaning.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 1:50PM
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