Questions on professional style kitchen appliances


What is a good free standing gas range? I'm looking at a professional style 36" or 48" with six high output btu burners with griddle and wok options. Consumer Reports tested some professional style ranges and the results were disappointing. Wife was a professional cook and this will be her last range so I don't mind spending big bux but don't want to be disappointed by mediocre performance and reliability. From what I understood the gas oven now is so precise that an electric oven is not required. Is that true? Seems like we could save some money and have a little more option by buying pro style top burner and a double wall oven. Any disadvantage going this route? I'm remodling the kitchen so wall ovens is not a problem.
Also what advantages of a sub-zero refrigerator has? For the price of a sub-zero, I could get a real restaurant used walk-in. May go this route if I have the room.
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# Fred # wrote:

Wolf brand is the only one I know and you see them in many restaurants.
From what I understood the gas oven

Yes, gas ovens have improved just like all things improve. An electric convection oven is a must for a serious baker however. If you go for wall ovens you could have one of each which is cool. Gas is well suited for roasting and ordinary used. A convection oven is required for some dishes like pastries and such.

The only advantage is prestige. Sub-zero used to be a good brand but now it is all about upscale marketing and brand name recognition. Many other brands are just as good or better. Look in the yellow pages for restaurant supply. They will have a selection of new and used commercial units. A walk-in cooler is pretty upscale for a private home but, in my mind, is more practical and cost effective that the sub zero.
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You can't do that. I've looked into it, a commercial range is the one commercial appliance that isn't practical or even legal for residential use. The BTU's require a bigger feed than anyone likely has, the heat produced requires a fire safe environment you would unlikely be willing or able to create. I've had some of the other commercial appliances, and wanted to complete the set, but it didn't take long to be talked out of the range. The commercial dishwasher (Hobart under counter) was cool, but what a pita to install. It was dual feed, (2 hot water lines) and commercial units don't pump out, they dump to a p-trap and gravity feed out, quite the plumbing job. But it would do a load in around 7 minutes. The commercial refrigerator was ok, I really prefer the big Monogram we are presently using. Just as big, just as repairable, but more user friendly and less industrial looking.
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Eric in North TX wrote:

It can be done if the will is there, although, it many be impractical. To say that it is illegal is a stretch. Codes vary widely and enforcement can be non-existent. No law enforcment cares about your stove. Restaurant auctions are commmon. I have seen commercial stoves of all shapes and sizes at auction selling for pennies to homeowners and business people alike.
It may require special accomodation with regard to hook-ups and flooring, but, it can be done. A smaller stove would have no special requirements. If a larger one is desired then accomodation can be made regardless of your opinion.
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They require special attention to fire-clearances, and surrounding materials, bigger gas lines, and far-more ventilation (both outgoing and make up air) than are generally available in a residential kitchen. Once you statisfy the intallation requirements, it's cheaper to buy a really good residential stove.
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I wouldn't bother with "professional" style. Waste of money IMO. Get a really good "consumer" model and it will work just as good for a lot less. (With the money saved you could do some more fancy remodel work, which would pay off again when you sell the house.) Just like there isn't much difference between a Toyota and a Lexus - essentially the same quality at a vastly different price.
Gas ranges tend to cause wallpaper to yellow over time. Electrics don't, so that may be a thing to consider. The glass cooktops that most electrics have today are easier to clean too.
Sub-Zero? Save your money. They routinely fare poorly in Consumer Reports tests.
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I know where you're coming from... We bought a Wolf 48 about a year ago with a Vent-a-Hood vent. We got the griddle and BBQ grill with 4 burners. Your're on the right track with the griddle and wok. Don't use the grill much and you might enjoy the extra burners more. Low simmer is outstanding and we got the dual fuel with the gas top and electric ovens in large part for the self cleaning ovens. Another reason for the 48 was the two ovens which are both convection with the cooking probes. The trade off is that the gas oven has (some say) a better broiler but we have no complaints.
Love the Vent-a-Hood. Lots of volume, warming lights, and good lighting and much less cost then may others. With all fans on is a bit noisey but really moves the air.
Don't know much about the real performance of the priemum consumer model stoves. They are a lot less money. We figured this would be the last stove too and it's such a joy to work with wonderful tools so we went for it. We're not wealthy but I like my shop (OK and boats and cars too) and she likes her kitchen so where better to invest.... and I enjoy the return on that investment every day and she enjoys using it so much more.
Now our problem is we just bought another house and we have to make the decision again! If we don't take this stove we will likely go with the Wolf again.... but maybe separates because of the different space. Have a lot of work to do on this new house but we love the location.
Good luck, Rich ===================
# Fred # wrote:

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If she's a professional cook how come you're asking here? She should know what she wants in power etc.
Notice you use the words "professional-style". These are just imitation units designed to separate the yuppies (most of whom don't cook worth a damn anyway) from their money.
I used to have secondhand, probably 40 year old Garland 60 inch 6 burner, griddle, salamander, 2 ovens which was a bear to clean and finally the grease became too much. We didn't do enough homework and bought two home type ranges to replace the Garland. What a disaster! These naysayers who raise all sorts of problems about the commercial units don't know what they're talking about. Just try boiling water on a "high-output" (!) 12000 btu domestic burner vs a normal output 25000 btu commercial burner and you'll see the difference. Try building up the necessary heat to sear the steaks--oh, yeah I love slow cooked grilled steak! What the domestic ones do well is simmer something. That's because they're puny and under-powered.
Well at least they're easy to clean, right? Wrong! I anticipated self-cleaning ovens meant "self-cleaning". Error, there's still caked-on grease on the inside of the door and I can't self-clean the racks. All the tops (the burner parts) require non-dishwasher cleaning too. In fact I can clean my wine glasses more easily than the porcelain range tops.
Since selling the two domestic ranges is a PITA, we've chosen to simply use them for the ovens (which are OK except for the cleaning misrepresentation) and, oh yeah, the simmering, and added a two 25000 btu burner hotplate. That's a stand-alone pair of burners, not something a derelict uses in his single room occupancy hotel.
As to the fire danger (proximity), there isn't much and you can easily get around it by putting a sheet of stainless steel on the cabinets facing the range. As to the air quality, this is just the same with domestic and commercial; it depends on what you cook. Air exchanges for commercial installations are based on restaurants doing hundreds of dishes an hour. If you did the same on your rinky-dink domestic range you'd have the same pollution problems.
As to the gas supply I have a 2" main anyway for the furnace but I really don't need it. Are you going to be using 150,000 btu (6 burners) all at once? All that will happen with a reduced supply is that you'll have a reduced flame. BTW there is a group dedicated to professional cooking equipment.
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She would like a small professional range but getting approval for installation is not normally permitted here. She knows what she wants in power but we wanted to know what brand is good and reliable from people like you. For example my MIL replaced her gas range with an advertised higher performance unit but the new burners have less heat output. Too bad she couldn't get the old range back.

I have to agree with you. You see $200K kitchen remodel jobs and many of them eat at restaurants or do take outs most of the time. Some of my in-laws are like this but what do you do with all that cash to burn and no time for anything else but work. I think the kitchen is not only about cooking anymore - its more for show, for people to hang out and entertaining. It does look nice and wife actually cooks at home. Ironically she doesn't like restaurant food with the excess salt, sugar, butter, heavy cream, oil, grease and whatever else. She said many cooks would be helpless without the butter and heavy cream - just look at the TV cook shows.

The Garland is nice!
We didn't do enough homework and

Have not seen her with all the burners on full blast at home. Maybe two at the most. She is cooking for two now instead of a 100 at a time. Anyway she told me to stay out of her kitchen. She need at lease one high output burner for the wok or the cast iron frying pan for a nicely seared steak to perfection.
All that will happen with a reduced supply is

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48" commercial depth range with all the bells and whistles
try this link http://www.vikingrange.com/consumer/products/product.jsp?id=prod90030

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sub zero ref's. have 2 compressors and a vacuum seal so the fruits and veggies stay fresher longer and they have a great built in look.
*ALWAYS INSTALL THE ANTI TIP BRACKET* for all sub-zero refrigerators
.

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