The road to the Michelin Star: How to choose the perfect appliances
While it may be true that a tool is only as good as its user, having the right kitchen appliances can certainly make a great difference to the beauty, functionality and sheer joy of your kitchen. The meals prepared and events enjoyed within will be taken to a higher level when your kitchen incorporates the best appliances for the job.
Choosing your appliances must first and foremost be a reflection of the story told through your kitchen. If you love to create truly beautiful and inspiring dishes, it can be difficult without having top-level, near-professional appliances. From dual fuel ovens and ranges, to teppanyaki cooktops, the appliances in your kitchen simply have to reflect the needs and desires of the resident chef.
In this article we’ll examine the best ways to truly understand the appliances required to elevate your kitchen. It can be tough to choose the right ones, but we’re here to advise you on the ways to acquire the best kitchen appliances: perfect for unlocking your undiscovered passions.
Understand your kitchen’s function
We’ve spoken on the many ways that one’s kitchen should always prioritise function over form previously, but nowhere does this ring more true than through the large appliances installed in the room. Question yourself. How are you cooking? How many do you cook for? How frequently do you cook? It’s only once you’ve battled with these questions that you can begin to decide on which appliances would most suit you – and your very lucky dinner party guests.
If you have a smaller kitchen, perhaps you only live with your partner and rarely cook for others, then your appliances should reflect that. You wouldn’t need to invest in a 48” Wolf range with built-in teppanyaki top. No, in a smaller, less busy home a more compact (though still high quality) Gaggenau modular cooktop may be preferable.
Image courtesy of Gaggenau
This applies not only to ovens and cooktops, but also to other large appliances like refrigerators. The same rules apply as before, the biggest and boldest may not always be the best for your specific kitchen requirements.
When it comes to small appliances, you should strive to continue to put the utmost importance on the functionality of your kitchen. With small appliances in particular, it’s very easy to waste space and money on expensive gadgets that simply won’t be used. The space used for an elite built-in coffee machine or wine storage unit may very well be worth it, but those types of appliances certainly aren’t for everyone.
What story does your kitchen tell?
While it’s true that function should always come before form, when choosing appliances it’s very important to think of the ways they fit into the look and feel of the story your kitchen is telling, as well as your personal style.
Fortunately, almost every kind of appliance is available in seemingly limitless styles. This is incredibly important as many modern kitchens are the same, with a raft of kitchens bursting with individual style – especially among Extreme Design’s clients. Today, a rustic yet luxurious kitchen doesn’t need to be broken up by a hyper-modernist stainless steel behemoth of a fridge, nor does the luxury range cooker in a contemporary kitchen need to be a 1930s throwback.
Image courtesy of Sub-Zero
The choices, colours and materials used to craft today’s appliances give homeowners plenty of scope to discover what suits their kitchen and personal style without compromise. When selecting appliances, think beyond their functional ability and think about the ways they will fit into the kitchen. After all, small or large, your appliances will certainly have an effect on the way your kitchen is used and experienced by yourself and any guests.
Once you understand the function and story of your kitchen, it’s time to start thinking about the specific appliances you’ll need to incorporate. From large freestanding ranges, to sleek, minimalist dishwashers – it’s important to know exactly what to be aware of when choosing the best appliances for your kitchen.
Ovens and hobs
A freestanding range or a built-in oven with separate hob? That is the question.
The obvious benefits of built-in ovens come down to their size and efficiency. The streamlined design of a built-in oven makes them perfect for the modern home, and they can be installed at eye level for easy access that’s a lot better for your back. Rather than standing out, these modern ovens can be hidden within sleek cabinetry, while their modern designs make them a must have for the contemporary home.
Of course, carrying on the streamlined look of a built-in oven will require you to install a separate hob. Retain the sleek look by opting for a slimline hob – induction or gas is up to you – but low-profile will almost certainly be the way forward.
If you’re looking to create a kitchen that stands out, a free standing range may be your preferred option when it comes to choosing an oven. While having the oven on the floor and with an entire unit of its own might be inconvenient at times, a range can be an amazing statement maker – there’s no better home for a sunday roast than a beautiful standout range.
Choosing a fridge-freezer can certainly be a difficult task. As with all of the best kitchen appliances, your fridge should fit around your needs. Opt for more fridge space if you buy more fresh food, more freezer space if you like to keep things ice cold. For the entertainer, dedicated wine storage, drinks cabinets and ice makers should also be considered.
Much like your oven, when it comes to design, you could opt for either freestanding or built-in. Freestanding units are easily moved around, but could be a little too large and domineering for many kitchens. One benefit that fridge-freezers have that ovens do not is that they can be fully integrated into your cabinetry, perfecting the ultra-minimalist look.
It’s always best to opt for a model with a high energy efficiency rating. While energy efficiency is important for all appliances, your fridge will be permanently switched on: an inefficient fridge can cost you a fortune.
The dishwasher has quickly become a kitchen staple and, contrary to popular belief, the top dishwashers actually uses less water than washing up by hand.
Choose an integrated model to hide your dishwasher in amongst the cabinetry. However, it’s important to remember that form follows function, so be sure that you choose an appliance that’s the right size for your needs, with all the features that you may require.
Consider whether you would like a cutlery basket or tray, whilst both have their benefits it is often down to your personal preference. If you entertain for large groups of guests, you may wish to opt for two dishwashers; one for everyday use and another, perhaps smaller, dishwasher for overflow during these occasions.
As with any large electrical appliance, be sure to choose a dishwasher with an excellent energy efficiency rating and be wary of machines that use more water than is necessary. The best models may come with a higher price tag, but they are almost always worth it.
If you’re looking to improve your kitchen while incorporating the very best kitchen appliances, visit one of our studios. Discover how collaborating with an Extreme Designer can benefit you today.