With smart layouts and well-designed appliances and tools, modern kitchens increasingly level the playing field between amateur cook and gourmet chef. Do you long for a gorgeous kitchen that helps you multitask effortlessly and entertain like a Food Network pro? Task-oriented upgrades provide the support you need to make those dreams come true. Here are some worth considering.
Double the width inside your fridge so it holds party platters with ease. The French door refrigerator is one of the nicest-looking appliances to hit the market in a long time. Jenn-Air has a bronze version as an alternative to stainless.
Whether you’re preparing dinner for a family of four or orchestrating an elegant brunch for 20, the right dishwasher eases cleanup. Consider two dishwashers for large party entertaining, busy households and kosher kitchens. Or for smaller households, choose a model with two drawers for independent operation of upper and lower sections (an energy saver).
Cleaning & recycling
Laundry in the kitchen? Why not? I’m all for eliminating unnecessary steps. A small-capacity washer and dryer (or an all-in-one combo that fits under the counter) will put clean dishtowels at your fingertips.Get serious about garbage and recycling with the addition of chutes that lead from the kitchen directly into covered waste bins outside or in the garage. It sounds complicated but isn’t. Consult a qualified builder to link interior and exterior through a small hole at counter height. And if your bins don’t already have wheels, install them so it’s easy to roll garbage and recyclables to the curb. If a chute isn’t possible, make an undercounter disposal centre work for you: keep bins handy but out of sight with a cupboard slide-out system. Look for options at home supply centres or container and storage solution stores.
Cabinetry, countertops & storage
Start by rethinking old standards. Taller kitchen counters (42 inches rather than 36 inches high) provide more cupboard and drawer space, and eliminate unnecessary bending, especially for those who are taller than the average man or woman. To create a seamless, easy-to-navigate kitchen, opt for integrated appliances that don’t jut out beyond cabinetry. Continue the seamless appearance with stone countertops. Granite provides impervious service, but some find its appearance too heavy. Engineered products like Silestone and CaesarStone work equally hard and come in a variety of colours.
The ultimate luxury for those who love to entertain is surely the butler’s pantry, ideally located between the kitchen and dining room. It’s the perfect spot to store wine and crystal drinking glasses, silver flatware, and tabletop accessories like placemats and candlesticks.
Coffee lovers want – make that need –
a built-in espresso maker like the popular Miele system. Locate it near the breakfast table, where it’s guaranteed to keep mealtimes percolating.
Store wines in a freestanding or
undercounter wine fridge. Intro models are 15 to 24 inches wide and start under $300. Sophisticated versions have independent temperature zones for red, white and sparkling.