Appliance Dude – Curto's of Westchester County NY

The Largest Appliance Store in Westchester County NY

Curto’s Appliances Yelp Reviews That Yelp Doesn’t Want You to See

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yelp

Yelp and their silly-ass review filter are just too funny.

It’s really strange how none of our recent positive reviews make it to the standard Yelp review page and are instead relegated to the “Not Recommended” page.

Conversely you can have reviews like the NYC reviewer from summer 2014 with no prior activity on Yelp, who wrote a 75% fictitious review and it sticks to our main Yelp review page.

Hey Yelp! So much for your review filter!

I hope this isn’t because Curto’s stopped advertising on Yelp back in 2011?

Anyway, I proudly offer you “Curto’s Reviews on Yelp That Yelp Doesn’t Want You to See”

Written by Appliance Dude

September 29, 2014 at 9:38 pm

New Blue Star RNB Range Pics – Curto’s Westchester County NY

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New Blue Star RNB 30 Range – Love the Gem Color

I had mixed feelings about BlueStar. The doors in particular were driving me up a wall.
Then I posted a video, and it seems like BlueStar listened. Doors are in much better shape now.
And the GEM series colors are gorgeous.
Look for a Blue Star event at Curto’s in October. Details to follow….

Blue Star RNB 30 Gem Series - Curto's Showroom

Blue Star RNB 30 - Curto's Westchester County NY

Written by Appliance Dude

September 29, 2014 at 9:23 pm

Review: Blue Star Gem Range – Big Improvement in Door

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Did Blue Star Range correct their door issues? Appliance Dude says “Hell Yes”

We’ve been selling Blue Star ranges for about 1.5 years now and while the burner performance is pretty astounding I’ve been pretty emphatic about my disappointment in build quality in relation to the doors. Well I cleared out my old display and just brought a bunch of new BlueStar ranges into the new Curto’s showroom in Westchester County NY and I can tell you that I am very pleased with the promised changes that BlueStar has made to the doors. Check out the vids for the proof…


Old door

New door

There is a rather stark difference between the ranges. The older red one makes me think of the U2 record “Shake, Rattle and Hum”, while the newer Gem series BlueStar has a pretty tight and quiet seal. It’s not a Capital range but they are drawing closer.

Come visit us at 1966 Central Park Ave in Westchester, just minutes from NYC, NJ and CT. We have the largest BlueStar range display in the region and YES we do ship BlueStar ranges across the country for those who aren’t local to the showroom.

Written by Appliance Dude

September 23, 2014 at 9:22 pm

Review: My Wolf OG36 Grill Handles a Rib Eye and Skirt Steak

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Where the Appliance Dude Reviews his Wolf OG36 Grill and how it handles two potentially problematic cuts of beef

Customers who are shopping for a high-end outdoor grill will ultimately ask me which one I own.
Answer: WOlf OG36.
Then I’m asked whether I like it.
Well………..

The grill (at least the one I own) has a dual personality. On one hand it’s an extremely well-built savage (manufactured by the lovely and talented uber gas engineer Dante Cantal) that when handled the right way will do the job and then some – produces a great sear on the sear station side, uses thick-ass stainless grates, etc. Build quality is not an issue.

However from a performance standpoint I have issues. Main problem is that of sustained flareups which happen way too often for a grill at this price point. If you are grilling food with a marinade or with heavy fat content…what did the Human Torch used to say???…FLAME ON!
I’ve converted numerous hamburgers into hockey pucks and ruined other meals due to my inability to handle the grills and it’s flamethrowing ways.

og36rain

That said…
This past weekend the dichotomy of this grill reared it’s head in full force and prompted me to write this post.
I bought a rib eye and skirt steak at DeCicco’s in Pelham (very nice butcher, great quality, decent prices).
Nikki marinated the skirt steak in:
olive oil
chives
garlic
salt
pepper

The rib eye was my piece so I proceeded to lather it in Jake’s Beef Rub which is a coffee-based rub that has completely set itself apart from all other rubs tha I’ve used (Montreal rub? Cmon man!)

Rib Eye from Decicco's in Pelham. Great marbling in this piece.

Rib Eye from Decicco’s in Pelham. Great marbling in this piece.

As you may or may not know, the rib eye is one of the fattier cuts of beef so I went into this grilling session knowing I needed to be really attentive at the grill or I was facing the potential of Mt Vesuvius awakening in my backyard. I was on complete flare up alert and was poised to deal with it. As for the skirt steak I needed to be cautious as well b/c if that cut is overcooked in the slightest it will taste and chew like a bicycle tire.

Results: Skirt Steak
Skirt steak behaved rather nicely. 4 mins on each side to cook it to medium as Nikki prefers her steak. Yes, I had some infernal moments when I first placed the skirt steak on the grill but after shifting the steak to another spot it calmed down and I didn’t experience any other flares.
Nikki told me it was the best skirt steak she has ever tasted and we have eaten at some fantastic restaurants in/around the NYC metro area where they do skirts steaks fine. Major props to the Appliance Dude and my boy Jamie Purviance for precise instructions on how to grill a skirt steak.

Results: RibEye
This is where it got interesting. Check out the video. Shit got hot. Flames were abounding. The fat was flaring up and no matter where I moved that rib eye, flames would follow. I closed the lid to try and extinguish the flames and then when I smoke pouring out of the back of the grill hood I quickly threw it open and was greeted with this:

Whether it was the rain or divine intervention from Jamie Purviance and Steve Raichlen (who desperately needs a haircut. Steve, the disco hippie thing is not working for you) , I took that rib eye off the direct heat side grill at the 8 min mark, moved it over to non-direct heat source so as to cook the inside a bit more, then…came out with one of the best steaks I have tasted.
Look at the results – fantastic caramelization/crusting on top. Remember, searing is not about locking in juices (right Raichlen!?)
That crust has so many flavor compounds built into it from the rub and searing process…I’m salivating just thinking about it.

Can you say caramelization?

Can you say caramelization?

Bang. Perect. Look at that crust juxtaposed by the juicy pink interior.

Bang. Perect. Look at that crust juxtaposed by the juicy pink interior.

I was very happy with my performance and I gave the Wolf OG36 a nod and a wink for being a partner in the process.
Yes it’s been a love/hate relationship but it played a role in these steaks coming out so good and for that I’m going to be a little compassionate and will give it some more time before I bring another pro grill in for demos.

Next up…brisket???!!!!

Written by Appliance Dude

September 18, 2014 at 2:37 am

Viking RVGR3305BSS Gas Range – Higher Price, More Sales?!

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Where the Appliance Dude reviews his prediction on the Viking RVGR3305BSS range and owns up to his wrong call

When the prices on the Viking 3 series ranges were raised (significantly) earlier this year I shuddered and predicted a quick and ugly death for this line. You want consumers to soak up a $1000 increase that would take this product to nearly $4500?

What chew talkin’ ’bout Willis?!!!

Well one thing about the Appliance Dude is that I’m all about honesty and when the dude is wrong, he calls it.
So let me clear – I couldn’t have been more wrong about the Viking 3 series demise!

Not only has it held its own with a higher price point, it’s selling more than before!!!

Watch the vid!

Written by Appliance Dude

September 16, 2014 at 9:07 pm

Bertazzoni Range Review – Bella Figura!

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PART 1 of a MULTI PART SERIES

It’s official, I have developed a crush on Bertazzoni ranges.

La Bella Figura!

That’t the Italian concept of looking good.
In fashion.
In Art.
Actually in any element of design.
You see it in their cars. Their plates of pasta. Their shoes. Their hairstyles. Their scooters.

I lived in Italia for awhile and you can see “bella figura” steeped in every aspect of their culture (actually one could argue that they need to start focusing less on $*@*@ looking good and more on innovation and pumping up a shit economy, but this isn’t the forum for that folks!)

When I look at the Bertazzoni line of appliances, I see bella figura everywhere.
As we finished the first phase of construction of our new showroom and I scanned all of our displays, I felt that the nicest looking one was the Bertazzoni display…bella figura!

The cool thing about their line if ranges is that they have come a long way from being just beautiful pieces of art from the other side, and now, are baked (no pun intended) with some cool features which make them stand out against their direct Italian competitors from Verona and Fisher Paykel (I know they are a New Zealand company but the range design originated in Italia).

First check out the resin coated Bertazzoni knobs on their range. They allow you to separately control the outer and inner rings. Precision! Control! Now you’ll never burn the middle of that chicken cutlet b/c the oil pooled on the outer surface of your pan! I know Verona and Fisher Paykel don’t offer this and I don’t believe any other range manufacturers do it (but I will check that).

The outer and inner burners which are separately controlled by the Bertazzoni knobs.

The outer and inner burners which are separately controlled by the Bertazzoni knobs.

Bertazzoni Range Knobs

And can I get some love for the Bertazzoni “Thermanater”? This is a fictitious name that we have given this safety device which Bertazzoni has built into all of their ranges. What it does is detect gas pressure in relation to temperature – if it detects a gas build up YET the temperature of the burner and igniter isn’t increasing, it will shut the igniter down so you aren’t exposed to a gas leak. I believe it gives 60 seconds to continue trying to ignite and then it shuts down.
Some folks may think this is overkill. As a father with three small children in my home, I like this. Alot.

The Bertazzoni "Thermanater"

The Bertazzoni “Thermanater”

Written by Appliance Dude

September 11, 2014 at 2:23 am

Posted in Uncategorized

How to Grill Steak on a Wolf OG36 Grill

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Who says summer is over?

Decided to grill a strip steak on my Wolf OG36 grill and document the results for your viewing pleasure.

First step: went to visit the moody butcher “Mini” in Bronxville who gets an “F” for personality but an “A” in quality meats.
What looked good today…skirt steaks in a teriyaki marinade, lamb kebobs, rack of lamb, chicken/parsely/cheese burgers, pork chops..a vegetarian’s nightmare!

Instead of defaulting to the standard skirt steak (which in his marinade turns my Wolf OG36 grill into a flamethrower) I purchased an absolutely succulent looking strip steak which was marinated in olive oil and pepper.

Strip Steak from Mini's in Bronxville, lightly coated with coffee steak rub, salt and pepper.

Strip Steak from Mini’s in Bronxville, lightly coated with coffee steak rub, salt and pepper.

Another view of the strip steak showing it's beautiful fat profile.

Another view of the strip steak showing it’s beautiful fat profile.

Took it home, shook a little coffee rub onto both sides and then took it over to the Wolf OG36 which has already been preheating for 10 mins. Actually, to that point let me reveal my standard grill prep which I use every time and was taught to me by the zen grill masters Steve Reichlen and Jamie Purviance:

NB – grates have already been scraped clean from prior usage

1- grill turned on to HIGH – let it ride for 10-15 mins until you hit 600 degrees or so

2 – when grill is at temp paint grates with canola oil (do NOT use olive oil which has a lower burn threshold)

3 – place meat on grill

4 – Sear meat on DIRECT HIGH HEAT for 2 mins, moving clockwise halfway through to create cross hatch marks. Flip and repeat. Note these were at least 1.5″ steaks so I used a slightly longer cooking time.

5 – Move steak to INDIRECT HEAT side (I had this side set to LO) and let the steak cook for another 3-4 mins on each side before removing for MEDIUM RARE.

My goal was to create a substantial crust b/c there is nothing like the contrast of a caramelized outer crust and a subcutaneous tender, juicy middle.
So I used the dry coffee rub on both sides and went about searing.
Some experts will tell you to mist the steaks with vegetable oil spray which helps the rub cling better. Whatever.

When I took the steak off the grill and I let it sit for about 7 mins which allows the muscle fibers to relax (heat makes them contract) and this will actually draw juice that may been expelled back in.

End result – a damn good steak, and I’m happy to report that the
Wolf OG36 didn’t turn into a flamethrower due to flare-ups which has afflicted this grill since I’ve owned it. CHeck out the vid, there’s only a slight spark of fire (which usually turns into an inferno) which quickly subsides.

Cross hatch marks on the strip steak after a second turn

Cross hatch marks on the strip steak after a second turn

May have been the lighting but the steak was a bit pinker than this picture shows. I love the juxtaposition of the caramelized exterior (what a taste) and the juice interior.

May have been the lighting but the steak was a bit pinker than this picture shows. I love the juxtaposition of the caramelized exterior (what a taste) and the juicy interior.

DCS Outdoor Grill 36″ – Mini Review and Images

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What can I say?
Two years straight and DCS outdoor grills have beaten the pants off of all of the other high-end grill brands here at Curto’s. Actually it even outsold Weber this year.

This customer in Scarsdale NY was kind enough to share some pictures of her completed outdoor kitchen. Real simple and effective in design. She was a very, very educated consumer (actually popped in on Opening Day at the new showroom back in May) and came loaded with a bunch of questions as well as insights she had developed after performing a tremendous amount of research on outdoor grills.

She was set on DCS. No ifs, ands or buts about it. And I think her tale is one that those who are shopping for better grills can learn from. Her feeling was that when you added everything up – price, performance, reputation, service history, construct…she didn’t see how anything could surpass DCS at this point. I agree.
We compared welding, seams, the way the hoods opened and closed as well as the hood weight (which was important to her as a female). And as a native southerner with a penchant for outdoor cooking especially with tangy marinades and such, the DCS grease management system was a no-brainer in order to minimize flare-ups.

I did start to receive some chatter about Lynx Sedona in the latter portion of the grill season (I did not display it this year, instead opting for the Lynx Professional series) and I think Sedona certainly has merit especially as a lower priced alternative to the premium grill market, but it is not an apples to apples comparison to the DCS grill (the Lynx Professional would be the proper analog to the DCS grill).

Enjoy the pics and I’ll be back with more thoughts on the DCS BGB36BQar grill as well as it’s 48″ brethren.

dcs_bgb36_2

DCS grill

DCS 36″ Outdoor grill in Scarsdale NY

Written by Appliance Dude

September 3, 2014 at 9:32 pm

Electrolux Dishwasher ei24id50qs Dishwasher – Reviews

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Man, it is funny watching Electrolux ride the review that they received from Reviewed.com
for their new Ei24id50qs dishwasher. Reviewed.com…that’s the outfit that accepts advertising right?
Never saw an ad in Consumer Reports….whatever

I have the 50 series on display and it looks nice from the outside and when you open the door it looks good on the inside…then you start moving racks around and the thing seems flimsy.
I’ll need to bring one home and run some tests on it before saying that this can run with Bosch (which Electrolux is marketing it as).

We’ve sold a few, I’ll need to contact some of those customers and see what their on the ground experience is with the product. Dems the experts folks, not us dummies in the showrooms!

Written by Appliance Dude

September 3, 2014 at 2:36 am

Summer Appliance Wrap – Appliance Package Deals are Changing

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Wow, did the summer go by that quick? (I know it’s not technically over if you are a devotee of the autumnal equinox but with Kindergarten starting this week summer is OVER in our house!)

I was blinded the last few months. We opened the new place quietly on May 5 and any thought of creeping slowly in the new digs flew out the window as we had record months in June and July. What’s going to happen when we actually start publicizing Curto’s Mach 2?

However the rush and thrust of business did not prevent the Appliance Dude from listening and observing. And here’s one major trend that I have spotted since May and I see continuing unabated as we continue to put kitchens together for delivery by year end:

Kitchen Appliance Package deals under one brand are falling by the wayside. That’s right – the brand package deals (which are so incredibly boring to sell) which have been on the table since 2009 are definitely waning in popularity. Folks are willing to give up the free dw (ok maybe not so quick on that one) but they are passing on some of the other promos and putting together what they deem are actually best of breed in each category, or, they are spending more money on the cooking appliances and NOT buying built-in 84″ high fridges and instead are opting for 36″ counter depth units and saving 5-6K in the process. I just had someone come in the other day and buy a Wolf range, Bosch dw, Faber hood, and an Electrolux 36″ fridge and a less expensive fridge for the garage for more storage.
Here’s another example – in this case they splurge on a 36″ SubZero french door which is 9k, but instead of putting the Wolf appliances in the deal, they opt for a Capital range, Faber hood (again) and a mid-priced Bosch dw. Money was left on the table in this deal but the customer justified it b/c they A) wanted independence as far as brands were concerned and B) Felt strongly that their dollar stretched the furthest with Capital cooking appliances.

Go figure!