Kitchen & Bath Design News

APR 2014

Kitchen & Bath Design News is the industry's leading business, design and product resource for the kitchen and bath trade.

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April 2014 | 29 A bathroom becomes a more special place because of Geberit. More roomy. More aesthetic. Just more. Geberit installation technology is securely located behind the wall. Where it should be. Spend all the extra minutes you want, as long as you know Geberit is behind the wall. Call 866/787-3924 for your designer's kit or visit → In a minute Circle No. 15 on Product Card Trend Spotting By Jamie Gold, CKD, CAPS T here are numerous benefts of induction cooking – benefts that designers and homeowners alike are starting to appreciate. They're more energy ef- fcient than gas or radiant, as all of the heat goes directly into the food, rather than dispersing into the room. They save time, both in meal preparation, since they heat so quickly, and in easy clean-up afterward. They're safer for children and the memory-challenged. They ofer more temperature control, as restaurant chefs are now appre- ciating. They're sleek, and getting even sleeker, for the modern kitchen enthusiast. IN THE BEGINNING While the first patents for i nduct ion cook i ng technology date from the early 1900s, they were re- ally launched in the '50s through the '70s in the U.S. Even as recently as fve to 10 years ago, however, homeowners were reluc- tant to try it. "Like all technological advancements, it takes time for consumers to accept the technology," shares Danny Swaim, v.p. of business development for retailer Pirch. "Today, induction is be- coming a 'must have' item, [and] not only for an electric customer; surprisingly, consumers who loved gas cooking are switching to induction," he states. Adding heat to food is one of the most 'primal' functions we perform as humans, so adoption of new technologies in this area can defnitely be slower. Many consumers were concerned about changing their cooking style, which is defnitely required to take advantage of induction's speed and temperature control. Others didn't want to change out their non-conductive cookware; there are more choices than ever now. Some, including doctors, were concerned about the cooking magnets' efects on pacemakers in early induction models (concerns that have largely been assuaged). Oth- ers were just pre-sold on the dream of a pro style gas range, even if they had to bring in a gas tank to fulfll it. Those perceptions are slowly changing, and manufac- turers are ofering more choices and price points to meet increasing demand. COMPARABLY SPEAKING At the 2014 Design & Construction Week in Las Vegas, Bosch introduced its latest range, a slide-in induction model with convection oven and warming drawer. There are only a handful of slide-in induction ranges on the market (GE, Electrolux, Kenmore and Viking also have them), especially compared to the wide array of slide-in gas ranges available, making this introduction notable. It's a diferent story on the freestanding range and cooktop front. Just about every major appliance manu- facturer has induction cooktops in their product lines, though some of the best features are reserved for the 36" size. One of those features – introduced by Gaggenau at the 2011 LivingKitchen show in Cologne, Germany, then brought to the U.S. by its sister brand Thermador the next year – is full-surface induction. This technology allows users to cook across almost the entire surface of the cooktop, not just four or six designated "burners." At the next LivingKitchen show (in 2013), many of the exhibi - tors were showcasing full-surface induction cooktops for the European market, some at afordable prices geared toward multi-family builders. In the U.S., we're still paying top dollar for that feature. Swaim is bullish on it, though: "The addition of full-surface technology has been the most exciting [feature] for many. It adds an element not found on any other fuel source." That element is intuitive fexibility. In Thermador's Freedom cooktop, cooking settings move with the pan when it's placed on diferent areas, providing added value for the price point. The company's 2014 DCW introduction was a sleeker frameless version of the Free- dom top. Other brands are ofering frameless tops, too (though not full-surface), including Wolf's uber-sleek fush-mountable model. Also fairly widespread now is the popular simmer Induction Cooking Heats Up •• Designers can customize the cooking center for their clients with induction and other elements (see photos above and at left). • Wolf's induction cooktop can be fush-mounted into the counter for the sleekest look possible. Photo: Gaggenau Photo: Wolf Appliance Inc. Photo: Miele KBD_26-31_TrendsSpotting.indd 29 3/14/14 9:55 AM

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