Most recommended kitchen appliances for kitchen remodel
I am about to embark on a kitchen remodel, and I am looking for recommendations for appliances. I will need:
-a 30"-36" gas range (looking into dual fuel, but not sure if they are worth the extra $$) (I'm strongly considering Wolf...tell me if I shouldn't...I like the look for sure)
-a quiet hood fan (I may only buy the liner parts and have a wooden hood constructed, so looks are not terribly important) (I've heard good things about Vent-a-hood, but I don't know much about fans)
-a dishwasher (looks are also unimportant since we're covering it up with cabinet face, the quieter the better) (Bosch has been recommended to me)
-stackable, front loading washer/dryer (the area is short on space, so the new huge stackables are probably not possible)
Also, I have pretty much settled on Diamond cabinets, but haven't placed the order. Does anyone have experience with them?
Thanks in advance for your time and imput!
We have an Asko dishwasher, put in new when we remodeled 8 years ago. It has been outstanding, never a service call, super quiet, all stainless. Would buy another in a minute.
Have a Garland 30" gas range, is also great but doubt you could find one as I think they've quit making home units, only restaurant stoves. Has a gas oven which I've really learned to love after always having electric.
L.A. Hound, it's critical you have your appliances picked out before you order your cabinets. (Each appliance's size and dimensions are listed on the companies' web site. Very important for built in's like the dishwasher and possibly your stove.) You didn't mention a faucet or sink. These can really add to your cooking experience and the look of your kitchen. I suggest going to www.designerplumbing.com and get some ideas. You'll also find the prices to be really good. Along with a built in oven, we selected Dacor's dual fuel range because it has an electric oven (preferred) with a gas broiler. (The only stove I've found configured this way; it provides professional quality results.) The burners are also gas. We love this unit. Make sure you use power strips under the cabinets instead of conventional, in-the-wall electrical outlets. The versatility is much improved. Next consider lighting--also under the cabinets. KitchenAid makes excellent dishwashers and refrigerators. Finally, get a good, battery operated a.m. radio so you can listen to talk radio. (Why? Because half way through the remodel, you won't be speaking to each other anymore.) Good luck!
I ditto the Asko. I was blessed with a couple of great appliances I wouldn't have otherwise been able to afford when my parents sold their house. Before listing it, I was able to buy their dishwasher (Asko) and their range (Viking) for the price of purchasing new replacements for their house.
The Asko is about 12 years old. I have never had a service call for it, either. I have, however, had one button that has caused a problem. It's the on/off button. The guy has come to repair the Viking numerous times, and he fixed the button for me twice. Long story, but suffice it to say that it hasn't caused a problem, and I would save the extra $ to buy an Asko if I ever needed another d/w. The dishes don't have to be rinsed/washed before going in the machine, and it is very, very quiet.
As for the Viking ... hmmmm. Well, I love all the cooking area on the stovetop & in the oven. And it cooks just fine. The problem has been things that break on it. I have had the same part - one of the igniters - repaired numerous times, and it goes out over & over (no, it's not the repairman. And it's been covered under Viking part warranty twice, including paying labor.) Plus when my son was little, he turned a range knob the wrong way, and it broke. I had to order numerous knobs before I got any that matched or even remotely fit. (They had part numbers & everything. And they wouldn't pay the return shipping, so I just kept the non-matching, non-working knobs.) The new knobs don't even actually fit. They are wobbly. You kind of have to estimate where the temperature is (the original knobs are great, precise, etc.) Another knob broke somehow, and the oven knob did, too - I can't even remember how now. But same problem there.
So as for looks & performance, I can't say enough good things about my Viking. But for repairs & parts, etc., I'm really disappointed. A piece of equipment with that price tag should a.) not break so easily and b.) should have repair parts that fit and work.
BTW, the Viking is 36" gas w/ electronic ignition.
Some of our best friends have a Wolf and love it. I would not buy their particular model over a Viking (even with the problems I've had w/ it). It's a nice range, but there are only 2 oven racks and 2 levels for them - one high, one low. The interior of the oven doesn't seem nearly as spacious as the Viking.
It's an attractive range, but my experience with it certainly hasn't put it on my top "have to get it" list.
The "Garland" mentioned above is light years better than any Viking or Wolf and their ilk (assuming your interest is performance not necessarily the coolest looks) but now is sold as "Bluestar." It is made by Prizer-Painter, who used to make them for Garland and continued after Garland decided to drop their residential business. Check the Prizer-Painter website. Also check the Appliance forum on the Garden Web where you will find far more information and opinions than you will know what to do with. Do some searches of this board for some further recent discussion of these matters.
If you are a serious cook Bluestar is the way to go. I don't believe they make a dual fuel tho. Solution is to get a stove top and combine it with an electric wall oven. I did that and it works well (have a Jenn Air double oven-it was the most economical I could find that had true convection in both the top and bottom ovens as well as non-exposed heat elements).
Thanks for the info, johnb. I will replace my Viking some day, and I am always looking for good suggestions. It amazes me the number of people who love, love, love their Vikings. I am not enchanted with mine. As I said, it cooks fine, and I like the space, but I have told a zillion people (who enviously looked at my Viking and said "some day") that I was sure there were better routes to take than that.
One good thing I can say is that the founder of Viking is a civic-minded man who does good things with his money!
Also, you really like your Jenn-Air? My mom had one for a while, and we really did not like it at all. Just curious. Maybe they're better now?
I guess my attitude is an oven is an oven, so long as it does convection well I'm OK with it. This is the 2nd one I've had (I installed one in my old house in a remodel prior to selling, in part to try it out) and I've not had any issues with either one of them. I don't bake much--I mostly use it to roast and do things like bread pudding, so can't say about serious baking. I have cranked it up all the way and done pizza a few times and it seems to be able to handle that as well as can be expected from a home oven. But I'm not a pie/cake/cookie kinda guy so can't help you much there.
You know, now that you mention it, the worst part of the Jenn-Air was the stovetop. She had a double oven, one of which didn't work (these were in the house when she bought it). But the stovetop was just awful. But I really should keep an open mind about it because it was not cleaned well by the original owners, and maybe a new one would be better.
Wolf is great, but Garland has a more powerful super burner and a more stable simmer burner.
A grill under the hood, for when it rains.
A convection oven if possible.
A double sink, for soaking and washing the big stuff.
Room over the sink for a dish rack for drying, for when you use only a couple of things and don't want to run the dishwasher.
A SubZero fridge if you can afford it -- the biggest one that will fit -- but definitely one that can hold a freezer at zero without freezing what's in the other part.
A large magnetic strip for knives.
If you have a stand mixer, a cantilevered shelf that goes down and under the counter.
Lots of prep space, and also lots of counter space next to the stove.
Twice as many electrical outlets as you imagine you could ever use, with at least one separate line for the heavy-duty stuff like the microwave, toaster, etc. Most should be at counter level.