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48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

Posted by jrespen (My Page) on
Sun, Aug 11, 13 at 14:47

We are remodeling our kitchen and designing a "chefs" kitchen. We have looked extensively at most of the ranges out there. We like the 48" Wolf dual fuel and would like to hear any pros and cons comparing the Wolf to other models including Viking.

Any helpful information is appreciated.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

If you read on here most of the reviews of the Viking stuff in the past few years are not what they used to be in the past.

No brand is perfect, but Wold seems to get high reviews from most people, though there are some people that have had issues with Wolf as well.

I would say that Wolf also isn't what it was in the past, but I think most would agree on here that they would go with Wolf over Viking. Again, not everyone would agree with that, but I think that would probably be the consensus if we took a poll.

Phil


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

Most pro chefs use all gas for their cooking, not dual fuel. I'd suggest exploring that option. Or, doing a separate rangetop and wall ovens. It would be allow you the ability to customize the individual elements better.

And stay away from Viking. They were just sold, and who knows the future of the company now. They were already in a pretty precarious position in the appliance world due to the crummy customer service, and the fact that their products needed that customer service rather more frequently than their competitors.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

I am not sure, but I thought electric was a more consistent, and therefore better, option for baking/roasting?

I know there are other opinions, but that is what I recall. So I don't think that DF is a bad option.

Phil


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

The conventional wisdom is that electric is better for baking because of the more consistent temperature but gas is better for roasting because of the moist heat.

Viking in recent history is horrid.

Restaurants mainly use gas because it has a lower cost of operation than electric. When the ovens are on 12-24hrs a day it makes a difference.

Wolf's burners are mediocre at best but their electric ovens have been top performers. Recently there have been a couple of posters saying that Wolf has not resolved their blue porcelain problem in their ovens therefore they don't recommend Wolf ovens or ranges.

Plus you have to pay a huge premium for dual fuel when in fact it does not cost the manufacture a lot more to make.

I would look at the Capital Culinarian All-Gas with self clean oven. These also have a motorized rotisserie that can hold up to forty pounds and come in eight colors in addition to SS.

They have fantastic 23k btu open burners with very even heat. No need for high maintenance tin lined French copper pots. The one issue with these in the past was a few people felt the simmer too high. New ones coming out of the factory now have a dedicated small pot/simmer burner.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

>>>Wolf's burners are mediocre at best

This is a very biased statement by someone who thinks all sealed burners are mediocre. In fact, Wolf has excellent dual stacked sealed burners that have reasonable highs and excellent simmers on ALL the burners, not a special simmer burner. Yes, the burners are not jet engines like the CC or Bluestar, but most home cooks, even top notch ones, find them more than acceptable.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

This is a very biased statement by someone who thinks all sealed burners are mediocre. In fact, Wolf has excellent dual stacked sealed burners that have reasonable highs and excellent simmers on ALL the burners, not a special simmer burner. Yes, the burners are not jet engines like the CC or Bluestar, but most home cooks, even top notch ones, find them more than acceptable.

This is a very biased statement from a sealed burner owner that thinks dual stacking makes any meaningful difference. The only sealed burner configuration that does make a difference is Thermador's.

CC's 23k btu burners are capable of 145 degree simmer which is more than reasonable. Other than raw foodist, virtually no one needs or can use Wolf's 100 degree simmers.

Most home cooks do find sealed burners more than acceptable because

a) most home cooks are completely ignorant about burners

b) most home cooks are not spending $10k plus on a range. When you spend this much you want more than acceptable or slightly above.

c) Wolf's sealed burners will not give you a decent stir-fry or Pittsburg steak while the CC will.

Typical sealed burner heat pattern

Dual stacked flame pattern

Culinarian heat pattern. In addition to the availability of much higher temperatures.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

dayglo lives up to his name again :-).

If it isn't an open burner, it's CRAP!!!!! The fact is, all sealed burners are not created equal - some (e.g. Wolf and DCS) distribute the heat more evenly than others.

Many of us with pro-style sealed burners do not have a problem at the high end - I stir fry extremely well with a sealed 17.5K burner - no steaming of the food as seems to be the main complaint. For most other cooking the issue is not how high you can turn up the burner, but rather keeping it low enough to cook the food without immediately burning it.

To me, the very low simmer on all burners is extremely important - I can melt butter and not have to watch it to keep it from burning and I can leave a pot of liquid on simmer for hours without it boiling down. The dual stacked burner definitely provides a lower simmer on all the burners than other options. That's why Bluestar and CC need to provide a separate smaller simmer burner to get a sufficiently low simmer. Different strokes for different folks.

This issue of sealed vs. open burners comes up periodically and people have strong opinions but there is no right answer, no one size fits all.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

Dead horse, but lets beat it for the newbies.
I had a very capable Dacor sealed burner rangetop in the early 2000's. Dacor's burner not as good as Wolf or Thermador maybe, but not a slouch like the Jennair I just canned. Now I have the CC open burner in a 48 inch config with grill and griddle.
The ONE reported advantage, in my mind, of a sealed burner is that it is easier to clean. This in fact is not only wrong, but exactly the opposite. The sealed burner is far harder to clean in my mind. The simple fact is you can't lift out the top of these to clean, you can only wipe which ends up taking a lot of paper towels to achieve. With an open burner just lift of the dirty piece and scrub it in the sink. The sealed burners typically also have a shiny porcelain surface, which eventually gets scarred from something hot. It then ceases to be shiny, defeating the purpose. This is not speculation, I'm a hardcore user, I had the sealed burner for 6 years and used the heck out of it. Using the heck out of my CC has taught me the way of the wise.
In the end sealed burners are a marketing gimmick in my mind. They LOOK like they are lower maintenance, and they LOOK cleaner when they are not used hard. If you want a pretty stove that gets little use, and looks great out of the box, then get a sealed burner. If you want to cook, stop worry about what the range looks like and get something that works. If you want a status symbol, by all means get a Wolf with red knobs. It will help resale and will impress your friends.

I also agree that separating the rangetop from the oven makes sense. You can usually, for the same cost pull this off and get the best oven and best cooktop. If one dies, the other wont. Gas cooktops have little to go wrong, but if you throw in a complicated electric oven below it as in duel fuel, your reliability of the whole unit might plummet. Albeit, I'd wager you could use the gas top in most cases when the oven dies. Also if you go 48" you'll get stuck with a smaller oven that you probably don't need, and won't perform as well. While I really liked Thermador Pro Grand Steam oven ideas, I finally woke up and remembered how much I hated my sealed burners.

Try making a Bluestar or CC rangetop work with either a Wolf, Miele, Gaggeneu, or Maestro wall oven. There might be others to suggest, but performance wise, these are the cream of the crop.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

To beat the dead horse once more, the ease of cleaning depends on the particular range. The DCS range has a brushed stainless cooktop that is a breeze to clean - if it wasn't, I wouldn't be cleaning it I can assure you. You really can't generalize about this topic - the particular range makes a big difference. My old open burner range was a b*tch to clean so I didn't. When I finally lifted the top up before I got rid of it, you should have seen the gross stuff underneath there!


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

I own a 36" Wolf DF and am one with porcelain issues. I love the burners with a great low heat and the oven is wonderful. I am looking to replace it though. After dickering with Wolf they have agreed to provide the part and $350 in labor. The problem is the labor starts at $800+ because they don't know what they will find and the time may vary depending on how fast the guys work. They will only guarantee the part one year. They used to replace ovens with this problem even when 4+ years old for a small fee. Most posters here and elsewhere have had more than one replacement and the replacements don't last as long as the one before. I don't want to risk inhaling or ingesting tiny glass shards when the liner starts to degrade.

"I thought electric was a more consistent, and therefore better, option for baking/roasting? "
"gas is better for roasting because of the moist heat. "

Consistency has nothing to do with gas or electric, but bulk for thermal stabilization (providing radiant heat), air movement within the oven chamber(providing convective heat), placement of burners and accuracy of thermostat. Some companies seek to improve this by adding among other things,more insulation, more bulk, fan(s), a third and possibly a fourth element with computerized controls and and a thermostat with a narrower variance from the set temperature.
When looking at humidity in an oven, you have to look past the immediate heat source and look at what happens with the oven and the cooking process. In general a gas oven has more ventilation through the oven chamber so the water that is a product of combustion is vented out along with more heat, so the heat is drier. Electric ovens are not ventilated as much so hold moisture from cooking. The moisture in the electric oven is beneficial the first half of baking breads and cakes because it allows the dough/batter to expand a little more, promotes starch gelatinization and allows better heat penetration of what you are baking. "Dry" is better the second half of the baking process. People seem to pay more attention and it makes more difference for bread. There are many ways people use steam for bread. "Dry" heat from a gas range or using the convection mode on an electric stove gives crispiness to a roast and may be better for some cookies, pies etc. External moisture has nothing to do with internal moisture of a roast. The amount of internal moisture is due to the temperature of the meat.

Plus you have to pay a huge premium for dual fuel when in fact it does not cost the manufacture a lot more to make.
You pay a premium for the additional elements, fans and the computers to make them run correctly. It would be up to the individual to decide what is huge and if it is worth it.

They have fantastic 23k btu open burners with very even heat. No need for high maintenance tin lined French copper pots.
What the heck does this mean???
If you have a burner with a flame pattern of 5-6 inches wide, if you use anything wider than 8 inches, you will benefit from a pan that has good heat conduction.
Best is heavy gauge copper, lined in tin or stainless. Not everyone polishes. You can also get plied cookware with copper that goes in the dishwasher.
Cheaper is aluminum available in several configurations including plied cookware.

This is a very biased statement from a sealed burner owner that thinks dual stacking makes any meaningful difference.
The purpose of dual stacked burners is to provide two separate burners each with its own range of heat. You would have to look at the range of BTU output for each burner to see the benefit. Rating by temperature is meaningless. I might have a BTU output of 325 and the temperature of what I am cooking could be 190 or 80 depending on the pan and what I am cooking.

CC's 23k btu burners are capable of 145 degree simmer which is more than reasonable. Other than raw foodist, virtually no one needs or can use Wolf's 100 degree simmers.
This is unbelievably presumptuous to pontificate about what other people should or should not find useful in their kitchen. I use low heat daily for
-cooking a whole dinner or pot of soup in a LeCreuset pot using minimal energy
-serving off the range, no worries about any scorching pastas, mashed potatoes etc
-a short term sous-vide
-anything that used to require a double boiler
A few weeks ago I was making a syrup that had to be held hot while another step in the recipe was completed and even with the low simmer, it would not stop boiling. I could have "used" even lower heat. There is a whole big world of people that cook in many different ways.

Wolf's sealed burners will not give you a decent stir-fry or Pittsburg steak while the CC will.

Cooking is about the temperature of the cooking surface. The source of heat is just one component of this. A cook who understands how the properties of cookware work as well as how what you are cooking comes into play will be able to combine these things to come up with the right temps for the cooking surface on both high and low end. You can find blogs where cooks preheat cast iron to extremely high temps by low powered burners to cook pizza. Some restaurants cook a steak on a rock table side with no flame underneath. You just need to understand how to accumulate heat in your cooking surface.

How are those pictures representative of the burners referenced? The CC is way off.

I have cooked on many different open and sealed burners over 50 years. I agree with weissman that ease of cleaning burners depends on the build and also has a very subjective component. I think you have to avoid generalizations. Even the black enamel on the Dacor range we had was much more difficult to clean than the black on our current Wolf. This, an observation from my husband.


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

Wow, thanks for all your feedback. I will continue my research and look into the CC ovens. it sounds like a mixed bag when it comes to dual fuel. I have an all gas right now and love it, but the wife does like the blue finish on the DF... After telling her about the chipping, I think all gas is a better option. Thanks again and please let me know about any other models I should look at.

This post was edited by jrespen on Fri, Aug 16, 13 at 17:00


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RE: 48" Wolf dual fuel vs 48" Viking dual fuel

As someone who has owned all-gas models from both Viking and Wolf, I will say that I didn't like anything about the Viking (except that it did look nice) and I love everything about the Wolf. And Wolf's customer service department puts Viking's to shame.

This post was edited by jellytoast on Fri, Aug 16, 13 at 3:46


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