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What a bummer…I had already sold a few of these new Thermador combination steam/convection 24″ ovens, with August 1 as the anticipated arrival date.
Thermador has informed me that the release date for the oven has been pushed back into the late fall. As stated, complete bummer because I had high hopes that this would be a strong seller in the fall cooking season. When a manufacturer tells me that things are delayed, that usually means that it’s going to take even longer than their initial delayed date. So here’s hoping that we don’t see these ovens pushed into late year or even early 2011.
In the meantime, if a steam oven is your thing, you’ll have to look at the Miele 2042 at $2699, the Viking VCS0244 at $3624 or the Gaggenau BS27 at over $6300!
So I have a couple from Greenwich CT in the showroom and the wife has me cornered…
CT Appliance Customer:: “Why do SubZero’s cost more than KitchenAid built-in fridges?”.
CT Appliance Customer:“Is it true that they break down?”
CT Appliance Customer:“I need to know why SubZero’s are as good as they are touted to be. Sell me on it.”
Wow. Where to begin? I start off like so….
“SubZero refrigerators are the finest in the business…I know this first hand…my parents, and grandparents, and aunts and uncles have owned them for decades. I’ve had countless customers come in here looking to replace their decades old 500-series models who swear at the altar of the Wisconsin company. They wouldn’t be caught DEAD with anything save for a Sub in their kitchen.”
” I also visited the SubZero factory 4 years ago and got a first-hand look at how the refrigerators are not only made, but how they are checked for quality (by humans!). So in terms of quality, prestige, brand power, reliability, looks and now even more so than ever functionality (due to all of the whiz bang things that SubZero has implemented in the “built-in” series) I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say that they are not only the grand-daddy of the whole concept of built-in refrigeration, but, even decades after they debuted, they are still the torch bearers and the ones who create the standard that everyone else in the business reaches for. Kind of like…(I’m thinking of an analogy and I guess the fact that I was playing “Houses of the Holy” on the way in lead to this)…Led Zeppelin. You know, it’s like no one can touch them, even 40 years later. They are the father and standard-bearers of hard rock. ”
“Ok makes sense”, she says, still trying to process this.
I don’t know if she digs the analogy. Maybe I should have used Shania Twain or Michael Buble instead of Zeppelin. I’m about to re-engage when her husband looks up from his Blackberry for the first time in 20 mins and says “That’s good enough for me. Buy the SubZero.”
And that was it…no more questions, just a credit card, a thank you and on the way out the husband leans towards me and say, “Saw them at the Garden in ’73. Loved it. When we need a dishwasher, let me know which one is closest to the early 70’s Stones and you’ve got a sale.”
We recently installed a KitchenAid Architect Series appliance display in the Curto’s showroom and it’s been amazing to see the love it has garnered from customers. The KitchenAid refrigerators are in particular demand so what I’ve done here is break the refrigerator line down by product category, and highlight some of the real winners.
KitchenAid Architect refrigerators are the brand’s biggest sellers aside from their dishwashers. Refrigerators come in a variety of styles such as counter depth, standard depth and built-in (which are positioned to compete against SubZero, Viking and GE Monogram refrigerators) and within those sizes you will find side by side, french door and bottom freezer models.
In this post I am going to concentrate on KitchenAid’s more popular side by side and french door refrigerators. I’ll cover the bottom freezer’s in another post.
KitchenAid French Door Refrigerators
For a counter-depth unit, check out the KFCS22EV which has an automatic icemaker and is 22 cu ft. If you want to opt for a bigger fridge in a standard depth size, then look at the KBFS25EV, which is basically the same fridge as the prior one but in a larger size. If you want a built-in French Door unit, then look no further than the KBFC42FTS which at 42″ offers 22.6 cu ft and a proprietary water filtration system.
Lastly, if you prefer a French Door with water/ice on the outside door look at the KFIS25XV if you want a standard depth model at 25 cu. ft and 36″ in width, or the KFIS20XV which brings the same features in a counter depth package at 36″ in width but 20 cu. ft in capacity.
KitchenAid Side by Side Refrigerators
The majority of KitchenAid side by side refrigerators chalk in at 23-25 cu. ft in capacity. Some of the more popular pieces are the KSCS25FVSS which offers ice/water on the outside of the door, 25 cu ft and is 36″ wide. The unit is Star K certified and also has an automatic icemaker. Water in the door is filtered through KitchenAid’s proprietary PuR system. The counter depth version would be the KSCS23FVSS which offers the external ice/water dispenser in both black and a monochromatic stainless steel which makes the entire outside uniform looking. The KSCS23 is 23 cu ft.
If you are looking for a built-in fridge and don’t want to spring for a SubZero, Thermador or Viking, Kitchen Aid offers side by sides in 42″ and 48″ increments. Looking for a 48″ with ice/water outside? Look no further than the KSSC48QTS. Not interested in ice/water? Go with the KSSC48FTS.
If you want a 42″ built-in, then the KSSC42QTS (external dispenser) or the KSSC42FTS (no dispenser). Both models offer water filtration, automatic icemakers, and spill proof shelves.
Kitchen Aid French Door Refrigerator - Curtos.com
Glad to see SubZero and Wolf appliances have put together a program that will hopefully juice some high-end kitchen appliance package deals.
Program starts March 1, 2010 and ends Sept 30,2010
Customer will get $1000 off your purchases if you buy a Sub Zero 700 tall refrig series or a BI model or a 648 Pro48 series AND any Wolf range or a Wolf wall oven, cook top or range top.
If you add another Sub Zero or Wolf product another $250 off each product up to 6 for a total of $1500.
Max Discount could be $2500.
If you’ve been on the fence about putting in a high-end kitchen appliances, now is the time to jump!
NB – THE WOLF MICROWAVE DRAWER MODELS AND THE WOLF MW MWC MICROWAVES AND SUB ZERO 600 SERIES DO NOT QUALIFY. ALL OTHER MODELS QUALIFY
Found this video report by Consumer Reports. GE’s new “green” appliances will operate on the “smart grid” meaning lots of energy and cost savings for consumers. They will cut power use during the most expensive energy consumptions parts of the day. Interesting stuff here.
A recent customer at Curto’s Appliance store was debating on whether to buy an entire kitchen appliance package now, or, just buy the one piece he absolutely needed now, and wait for the Spring for the rest of the appliances. The idea to wait a bit was provoked by his fear of the economy and thought that the manufacturers would offer better incentives on kitchen appliance packages in the Spring. My response…no way are you getting a better deal in the Spring than you are now.
The Spring time means home improvement season has kicked in, so the appliance marketplace will receive a boost from that. Plus, the govt looks like they are moving forward with Cash for Clunkers for appliances in late February, so the manufacturers won’t have much reason to provide further incentives with all that momentum going on. In the dead of winter, appliance manufacturers and dealers are looking to move product, pure and simple. Whether it’s to juice the cash flow, hit a volume quota or to clear the floor for the 2010 models, dealers are ready to deal NOW.
Plus manufacturers are offering great rebates – GE has it’s $500 back on a package of Profile or GE Cafe appliances (by the way we feel the GE Cafe line may just be the best value in home kitchen appliances right now). Thermador has its 1-2 FREE program.
Bosch is giving back $300 on a pair of frontload washer/dryer + additional monies for kitchen appliances.
The deals for kitchen appliance packages are there friends!
When I first mentioned this past summer that Frigidaire was revising its brand and introducing a “professional series” , a few people wrote to me and scoffed at the idea. Well a few months after launch, Frigidaire has a wide smile on their face. The Frigidaire Professional range and Frigidaire Professional refrigerators have proven to be the best sellers at this point…so good that availability is getting a little sketchy.
The hottest sellers in the Frigidaire Professional Series are the following two gas ranges:
FPGS3085KF – slide in, 30″, pro select controls, self cleaning, low simmer burner and warming drawer
FPGS3085KF - Curtos.com - Frigidaire Professional Gas Range
FPGF3081KF – freestanding gas range 30″, continous cast-iron grates, warming drawer, self clean
FPGF3081KF - Curtos.com - Frigidaire gas range
Frigidaire has upped the ante style and feature-wise, and so far we haven’t heard of any problems with the series. Of course since this is a new series, we’ll remained tuned in to that point and see if any problems develop. The new Professional Series has Frigidaire aiming squarely at GE Cafe and Bosch’s revised major appliance line. We’ll see what comes of this in the pitched battle for consumer dollars.
So the Frigidaire ranges have been available for a few months now and I’m happy to say that the only issue that has cropped up is that there were some availability issues in the late Fall, but that’s been resolved now. One interesting trend that I have seen develop is that sales of the Electrolux gas ranges have dropped slightly since the introduction of the new Frigidaire Professional series ranges. We have them displayed near one another in the Curto’s showroom and consumers are saying “hey, they look pretty much the same, have similar features, yet the Electrolux range is over $1000 more expensive.”
Compare the Electrolux EW30GS65GS, 30″ slide-in range to the Frigidaire Pro FPGS3085KF. Here are the similarities:
– self clean ovens
– convection ovens
– 4 sealed burners
– 4.2 cu feet of capacity
However, the Frigidaire FPGS3085KF sells for around $1599 at Curto’s, while the Electrolux has a UMRP price of $2499. That’s quite a spread!
Wolf Dual Fuel Range at Curto's
Many of my Wolf appliance customers in Westchester County and beyond ask what are the best methods to clean Wolf kitchen appliances such as the cooktops, wall ovens and ranges. Curto’s Appliances has compiled a tip list to help you clean and protect these significant kitchen investments. Let it roll….
General Rule: When cleaning stainless steel, always wipe or clean in the direction of the grain.
– Soap & Water, Towel dry, make sure to blow out the holes.
– Do not use abrasives as they may remove paint
Porcelain coated grates, pressed steel tops, gas oven interiors and oven racks:
– Use soap & water and towel dry to avoid streaking
– Fume Free Easy Off – use for difficult cooked on food products which is great for ovens and can be used on any of the above in “worst case scenarios”.
– Also use mild abrasive cleaners like Soft Scrub Orange, Bon Ami, or Bar Keepers
– While surface is warm, poor water on so that it bubbles, akin to a deglazing pan. Use a spatula to scrape off burnt-on food that now bubbles up.
– For stubborn stains you can use a Green Scotchbride pad with a cleanser like Barkeepers Friend or Bon Ami. AVOID PRODUCTS WITH BLEACH.
– Once the Wolf appliance product is clean spray or wipe on oil to protect surface from oxidation. If you get an orange color, this is rust and should be wiped/scrubbed off with a fine grade steel wool.
– Vinegar can be helpful for the removal of stains and discoloring of the griddle surface.
TOMORROW…Part 2 – How to Clean Wolf Appliance Stainless Surfaces and Wall Oven Interiors
I say yes…quite resoundingly.
I was working with a customer the other day who was doing a complete kitchen overhaul. We concentrated on the high-end space and even though I showed them multiple lines, they just kept coming back to Thermador. To be quite honest, I really hadn’t spent alot of time focusing on Thermador this year as I was following the wave of consumer sentiment that was moving (dramatically) away from the high-end lines and going for things like KitchenAid, Electrolux and GE Cafe.
But I’ve got to tell you, I think Thermador is a superb line that one can argue is the nicest looking of the high end lines.
More times than not, customer’s have remarked that when it comes to aesthetics, Thermador wins hands down, especially when it comes to their cooking ranges.
Undoubtedly, Thermador’s sweet spot is their cooking appliances. I’m not saying that the Thermador refrigerator line is shoddy, but I don’t think it’s at the level that their ranges, cooktops, rangetops and especially their ovens are.
A few brief notes on Thermador’s cooking appliances:
Thermador range – available in the Pro Harmony (flush with cabinetry) and the Pro Grand (bullnose) styles, I think these are the most aesthetically pleasing high-end cooking ranges on the market. Is it a Wolf from a performance stand point? No. But I think it’s nicer looking. The only annoying thing about the ranges is the simmer burner and it’s incessant “click-click” which has driven more than one customer out of their mind.
More to come…
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