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Help choosing new 36" range - shortlist picked, thoughts required!

Hi all,

I've been reading up on the board and heavily online about the recommended options in the 36" range category and have got my (long) shortlist down to the following:

- Smeg C9GMXU = $2,599
- Verona Pro Series VEFSGEL65S = $3,499
- Verona Pro Series VEFSGG365SS = $2,799
- Bertazzoni A365GGVXE = $2,999
- BlueStar RNB Series RNB366BV1
- Fratellu Onofri Pinnacle Series FRPN365 = $2,589

I've seen good and bad reviews on all of them so am looking for some personal thoughts. We live in PA (USA) and are looking to spend up to roughly $4k. Saw a couple of the very impressive looking GE monogram ranges in person, but are hoping that some of the options above will provide a better bang for the buck, especially given we're about to start a full kitchen remodel. Any thoughts would be much appreciated!

Open to all gas or dual range, so if you have any other options to add to the list, please do so!

Thanks in advance

Michael

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  1. I didn't know most of those brands were available in USA! FWIW the Nov 2012 Consumer Reports has their top 36" ranges as ...
    Gas: Thermador Pro Grand PG366B
    Dual: KitchenAid KDRU763V and GE Monogram ZDP364NDP.

    1. Well, the Bluestar is flat out the best cooking machine on the list but also has the biggest price tag. Really big American oven,powerful 22k open burners and 130 degree capable dedicated simmer burner.

      The Italian ranges,including the Bertazzoni made Smeg,feature small Euro type ovens. Really small by American standards.If I had to pick one of the Italian ranges I would go with the Berta for superior looks and really cool knobs. Performance is about the same in all of them.

      Usually a bit more expensive than the Bluestar is the Captial Culinarian. It features 23k btu open burners that can simmer down to 140(usually you need a tech to fine tune the burners so they give you the full power at the top and low simmer at the bottom.) Also features a cool to the touch oven door, lower temps than Wolf.

      Capital Culinarian 36" Gas Range CGMR366 is usually $5628 plus tax plus delivery.

      Below it is $4999 with free delivery.

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/Capital-Culin...

      7 Replies
      1. re: DeeAgeaux

        Thanks DeeAgeaux, great information. I've been unable to find the prices of the 36" BlueStar's online, every site I've seen them on shows the unit as discontinued. Any thoughts on rough prices?

        I definitely like the style and specs of the Berta for the money, but the small oven size could be a little concerning. Would it be too small for a good sized turkey at the holidays (15-20lbs)? It's just my wife and I at home so there's typically not that much food being cooked at once, but I want something that's going to work for our family for a long time

        1. re: MichaelJB

          I just went to a couple of sites after Googling Bluestar 36. Each of them says to call for a price. I did that when I was looking at the 30" and they gave me prices over the phone. Have you tried that? I have a BS 30" and I'm very happy with it except for the fact it gets very hot, both cooktop and stove, and heats up the kitchen in a major way, then taking a long time to cool down because it has so much cast iron. That has been a problem in the heat of summer but certainly a benefit when it is cool out...right now it is a bear to deal with since temps are near 100.

          1. re: escondido123

            Thanks for the advice, good to know about the heat the BS generates. Were you considering any other units before opting for it? If so, what made you go for the BS?

            I haven't called for a price yet, I was looking to get a rough idea of whether it's outside the budget we've set before calling for specifics, but there's nothing lost in calling them now. I'll give it a go

            1. re: MichaelJB

              All the people I talked to on the phone were very lackadaisical and none of them every called me to try and make the sale so I wouldn't worry about that...and they were able to give me a price in less than a minute.

              Why did we buy the BS? Well, we've had Vikings twice and both of them had serious problems with the igniters, as did those of a friend--so the Viking was out. We wanted high burner output, open burners and infrared broiler (which we'd had on the Viking and loved) so our options were few. We looked at the BS for 3 years before buying. The broiler is awesome, though a little small. The open burners mean the stovetop looks much cleaner with less work and the burners--well they are hot as hell. And as you can see from the picture, we got it in French Blue, which always makes me smile.

               
          2. re: MichaelJB

            BlueStar RNB Series RNB366BV1 is ~ $5.3k with no upgrades.

            Color,color knobs,grill/griddle/french top, backgaurd/high shelf, french doors, single side hinged door extra.

            Regarding Berta, I would take your roaster and your largest bakeware into the showroom and see what fits. If you don't have a large covered oval roaster borrow from friend or buy one and see if it fits. If it does not work for you return the roaster.

            Berta owners get defensive about the oven size and just say it is "sufficient" and " I cooked Thanksgiving dinner with my Berta"

            I like using multiple half and full size commericial baking sheets in my large pro-style American oven and would not consider these small Euro-ovens as my only/main oven. I even put a 40 qt stock pot in my oven when I make Birria.

            1. re: DeeAgeaux

              I'm planning to get back out and have a look at the options in store again this weekend, I'll make sure the roaster is in hand. Thanks again for your thoughts!

              1. re: MichaelJB

                It's a couple years later and I'm in the same search. BlueStar is the golden child now and great specs.$5600. Guess I might buy that, but really think that I can find a rabge for $3k. The DCS comes highly recommended from a CIA chef. $3700 for 30" 5 burner or $4800 for 36" 6 burner. The berta has mixed reviews isn't very powerful but is a good value and looks pretty The vikings and wolfs are not getting too much love lately. The consumer bosch seems to get some good reviews and runs $1100. What is the best performance for value?

        2. We've been real happy with our Blue Star. Since you are in PA, you might be able to visit the factory and have a look at production. Also, you might want to look at Five Star if you are looking at dual fuel.

          1 Reply
          1. re: dcrb

            That's a good call, thanks for the suggestion

          2. I have a Verona Pro Series range and while it is very beautiful and well-constructed, the oven takes ages to heat up and is impossible to specify to a specific temperature. The burners also fail to ignite randomly and then start to work again later. Overall, a powerful and beautiful piece, but also a little frustrating. My mother got a similarly sized Wolf that she says also takes forever to heat up, but I think she can specify the temperature exactly and has no problem with ignition on the burners.