Hello, I'm new - with a question about ranges/cooktops

Kitten1313December 12, 2012

We are in the planning stages of converting our attached garage into a kitchen. We will probably have about 16 x 20 area of space. We plan for this kitchen to be the *heart* of our home.

**The short question is this: what is a good range/cooktop/oven for a low to moderately skilled cook who wants to get good results and maintain a beautiful appearance, without going unnecessarily over-the-top?**

If you care for the wordy back story, read on. If not, just read (and answer!) the question. :)

Right now, I am in the process of picking appliances. I will be getting all new appliances, with about 25k budgeted. I'm quite certain I want a SZ or Liebherr refrigerator, because the things these fridges provide (steady temperature, dual compressors, no freezing of food in the back, lots of room) are features that I definitely need.

My problem right now is a range/cooktop. I enjoy cooking, but a) don't have a lot of time to do it right now; and b) my skills are quite basic. I can follow a recipe (with varying degrees of success) but that's about it. So I am finding it difficult to justify the $5,000 + cost of viking, wolf, etc. ranges. I kind of feel like a fraud/snob. Having said that, I also don't want a Sears range in my new, heavily used, beautiful space kitchen.

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dcarch7

Do you have gas? How much electric power do you have? Do you cook with a wok?

dcarch

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 10:10PM
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Kitten1313

Yes I have gas in the home, so the ability to hook up a gas stove. Currently have a glass top stove. I am undecided about whether I want gas or induction. Pretty sure I want a griddle (I have 3 young kids; I'm basically a short order cook at this stage). I do not cook with a wok.

I want something highly functional, beautiful, and more than just a "name"

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 10:59PM
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cj47_gw

If you've looked around this site at all, you've probably seen the threads on induction vs. gas, including the recent one that asked if anyone who switched from gas to induction regretted it. Folks who have induction generally like it a lot, so it might be worth looking into for you. Clean up is EASY, control is instant and precise, and when the small kids grow up a little and start wanting to cook, you won't worry about them catching things on fire. That said, there are those that still prefer to cook with gas...so I guess that's your call to make. Don't make the mistake of thinking that induction is anything like the smooth top electric stove you have now--there's no comparison at all.

Be sure to head over to the Kitchens forum for help with layout and other kitchen design issues. There are some really great minds over there, who really know how to design a kitchen for beauty and functionality.

Best of luck,
Cj

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 12:39AM
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dcarch7

I know you have not ask the question, just in case, have you figured out how to drain the Kitchen sink?

Back to your question, you said you currently have an electric stove, does your house electric panel have enough capacity for additional appliances for an all electric kitchen? If so, sounds like induction for you has great possiblities.

Don't forget to add additional electric need for air conditioning/heating/lighting for a new kitchen added to the house.

dcarch

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 1:12AM
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Cavimum

$25k is over twice what we spent on new kitchen appliances, and I got what I consider nice, slightly high-end appliances.

A $25k budget for appliances tells me the market value of your home is high enough ($800k+) that you need to stay with high-end appliances, regardless of how you use them. One has to think of resale, the resale competition, and curb appeal. JMHO.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 2:05PM
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elyash

With induction you have very precise control. If you like to bake, an electric oven in general bakes better. I have an electrolux induction which I am delighted with.
If having a grill or griddle for your range is important to you - then a blue star or capital is something to look at. American Range has pro style ranges as well and are less then bluestar or capital in price.
Having a range that gives you precise control will enhance your ability to cook more complicated items. You should decide the features which are important to you. For example, if you want a range which allows you to
set an oven to start and stop cooking while you are out, then a blue star or capital could be ruled out.
Cavimum points out that you need to stay with high end appliances for various reasons. I agree - to a point. I am an avid (gourmet) type cook - but I am also an interior designer. I think you need an appliance which meets your
needs. If you are planning on staying in your home long term I would concentrate on getting what you like in terms of a growing cooking ability and your needs/wants/desires and product appearance. If you think you will sell in 5 years then you might "need" to go high- end. However, not everyone you might sell to wants/needs high end- or they might not like your choice. There is no reason to spend money for the sake of spending it. If you have left over $$$ for your remodel - take a nice vacation, buy a new bedroom set,
put it in your children's college fund - or invest.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 3:57PM
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Kitten1313

Hi - this is not an $800K home. This was, at its highest selling point a 600k home. Pre-2008. This is our "forever home" so resale value is not as big a concern as doing what works for us. I'm not a gourmet cook by any means, but I enjoy cooking and want an appliance that looks nice - nice enough to be in our brand new dream kitchen without screaming "I wanna be a food network star!"

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 11:52PM
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