Aga 4 Oven Cooker
So, I'm building a new home. I will put the majority of the money into the kitchen area - cause that's how I work! I was talking with a friend, who just purchased a home. It had a Aga 4 Oven Cooker in it - in black. He has offered it to me for free, as he doesn't cook like I do. So, I need thoughts from folks who have ACTUALLY USED ONE. Can I get away with this, and then a professional level 36" rangetop? Will I be frustrated by it and will I need an additional convection / standard oven? Thoughts on what will make this kitchen great - without blowing the bank. I don't want to design around this beast if I'm not going to get any use from it.
Thanks for the advice!
All Agas are not equal. Is this a traditional one that stays on 24/7, which can get costly? Also are you in a warm part of the world where extra heat from the always-on Aga would be a nuisance?
We house sit here in the UK for friends for 1 month each year and they have a full on oil fired 4 oven Aga and a basic 24 inch slot-in stove with a glass 4 burner cooktop and a single oven sited a yard or so away. We do find ourselves using this secondary stove quite a bit for say gently heating sauce for pasta, or some soup. The Aga can be a bit fierce for that sort of thing, and needs watching. Also, if you are using both cooking plates and both ovens together, then temperatures can drop somewhat, so experience and practice are advantages!
Overall, I'd certaily take up the offer, and if you can't add another stove then maybe get a plug-in two burner counter top electric cooktop, to be brought out when needed.
Robin Joy raises the key questions.
What type of Aga is it?
Is it is a heat storage model? If so what is the climate like where you live?
If you live in a place where the summers are warm and the winters are mild then you will want to shut the oven down for significant periods during the year and use a more "typical" ovens and cooktops for the period when having a heat storage oven could make your home uncomfortable.
Irrespective of the answers you should accept this insane offer, though you are obliged to counsel your friend to withdraw it. To put it in perspective, I live in a Mediterranean climate and in a first floor apartment. If a friend offered a four oven heat storage Aga to me for free, I would move to a place where I could install it and use it for four months of the year. I would adjust my whole cooking style to suit it and have a simple gas cooktop and oven for the remaining 8 months of the year. They are that good.
It's about 12 years old is all I know. This friend doesn't need any counseling - he just spent 3 days at Augusta National golfing - a smooth $60,000 round of golf and jet ride! Suffice to say, he won't miss the Aga! In fact, it's sitting in a warehouse of his, and I'm going to go look at it Saturday to figure out what model, etc. I do know its a four oven configuration, in black, about 10 years old. I'm thinking of taking my DCS 36" range with me, and then put the Aga in as well. This will give me a backup standard oven, and gas cooktop as needed.
The drawback is that I was planning on putting in a built-in deep fryer and a built-in steamer. With the additional of the aga I will not have the space to do this.
To answer the questions, I live in the Midwest US. So, cold winters, hot summers.
I agree with jhamiltonwa that you should not refuse such a generous offer. 10 years old for an AGA is the same as 1 year old for a normal cooker. My only question is how do you plan to move it? Because it will weigh at least 500kg (solid cast iron all over) and has to be dismantled in order to be moved.