As an interior designer, I had to polish up (pun intended) on my knowledge of high-end kitchen appliances. Sure these might be items I would only dream of owning, that I may never operate–outside a display in a fancy showroom–but for the sake of my clients, I had to learn what was what.
The more I educated myself, the more I began to want these appliance–for myself! My “Drool List” went something like this:
The Miele Built-In Espresso Maker (with its trademarked Conical Grinding System, Frother and Integrated Milk Tank)…
Retailing at (gulp) $3,299.00 Not deterred? You can find one here.
La Cornue’s stove and range top–which, to me, always looked a lot like upscale luggage (literally and figuratively?).
Prices vary. Think $8,600-$35,000 range. It’s one of those, “If you have to ask….” products. But if you have to see, you can, here.
And the Sub-Zero refrigerator.
And last weekend…(drum roll, please)…JB found one on Craigslist for $100!
Yes, a hundred dollars! Sure, it’s used–but lovingly so. And since we haven’t started our kitchen remodel yet this is going to be a sort of refrigerator test run. This way we can see if the size and style and energy usage works for us–so we’ll know if we want to spring for a new one when it really matters!
Here is our old fridge inherited from the previous owners…
See? I wasn’t kidding about the cream paint marks–on a white fridge! I can only wonder about the why and the how.
And here is our new (to us) Sub-Zero in all its stainless steel glory!
I think it’s so pretty and it slid into the opening of our existing cabinets with a 1/16 of an inch to spare, kinda like the Refrigerator Gods were smiling down on us. It’s already worlds better–and quieter–than our archaic one that incessantly moaned, groaned, and hummed. (The Sub-Zero makes more of a steady white noise somewhere between waves crashing and being on an airplane, but quieter.) I’ll keep you posted about how it affects our electric bill!
In a moment of “The more contrasting metals the better!” JB gave the old hardware a vinegar soak to remove years of caked-on grease and then used Brasso to polish the heck out of it. Admittedly, it’s a bit on the clashy side, (I like to see it as our kitchen just went Bohemian Chic), but I do like the soft shade of brass, more like a brushed finish, than super brassy and shiny. In the past, I have had clients boil their shiny brass hardware in water and vinegar to age it, but now what’s old…is a tiny bit out and the sparkly stuff is en vogue again. Funny how that happens.
Besides good looks and a subtle sound, I’m not just judging this fridge by its cover. It’s what’s inside that counts and that is a heck of a lot of room. It’s huge! I feel like I can fit the contents of three refrigerators in here. We transferred all our food from the former fridge (see below) –that was stuffed to the max–and in the new fridge, it’s nothing.
And now…It looks like a (non-cooking) bachelor lives here.
We even have room for our three varieties of butter!
Yes, we’re butter gluttons. Since we went gluten-free, we have been delving deeper into the world of dairy products. Have you tried the Ferrarini Italian butter (the one on the left) from Costco? It’s not cheap, but the flavor justifies the cost. We find ourselves eating small slices atop (rice) crackers as though it were cheese. It’s that good. And we’re that bad.
I’m so excited to have a stainless steel fridge with a bottom drawer freezer so I can run experiments like:
1) What does all that stooping do to your back? Will it become natural to squat and open the drawer instead of leaning over? (Ah ha! Who needs to go to the gym when you open your freezer drawer enough…unless, of course, you’re opening it to reach for vanilla ice cream, eh hem!, on a nightly basis?)
2) Well, this one I can confirm. Magnets don’t stick to the door. One of my clients was recently a bit dismayed when she found this out for herself, but we both agreed it’s a blessing because it forces people to keep their fridge free and clear of magnets, kind of like what we designers and stagers will do to your fridge anyway if we’re trying to make the house look its best. Now cluttering with magnets and take-out menus and kid’s art isn’t even an option which is not such a bad thing.
3) Will more food fit into a bottom-drawer freezer than a side-door freezer? Confirmed, yes!
What about you, have you had a Sub-Zero for years and are wondering what took me so long to join the club? (The $100 price tag secured my membership.) Do you have a fridge you think is even better? The couple we bought the Sub-Zero from are investing in a Miele Smart fridge and a La Cornue stove and vent hood. Sigh. Although, I’m not entirely envious of their Smart appliance. From the hacking stories we’ve heard, they might not be such a smart idea. For now, we’re going analog with our new pretty beast.