When I was buying my new house everybody told me the cooktop (GE Profile) would work okay, all it needed was a little cleaning and all the igniters would work just fine. Well, wrong! I can't get a single burner to light itself. Only one of the knobs even activates the igniter system and it won't light its own burner! I don't see any way to get inside the cooktop without removing it from the counter.
Well anyway, even before I bought my house I had decided I wanted a professional or high end consumer stove. I'm planning on living here for the rest of my life so I figure it will be worth it to get the best even though I expected the price to be steep.
I don't know much about appliances at this level but my searching the Internet seems to indicate that the choice is Wolf or Viking, both of them are legendary brands. Please let me know if there are any other brands I should consider.
The choice seems to be either the Wolf CT30G
or the Viking VGSU104
. I'm amazed at the specifications! The features are impressive! I probably shouldn't be surprised, but near as I can tell they very nearly match up. Both have sealed, dual burner systems with automatic reignition. The Viking seems to put out a bit more BTU at both high and low (a lot more at low). Both are almost exactly the same MSRP.
Wolf: one 15,000/950 BTU burner, one 12,000/950, two 9,200/300.
Viking: one each 16,000/3,400... 12,000/1,700... 8,000/1,200... and 6,000/950.
The maximum outputs are close enough that I don't think there would be any difference for me, both probably put out 3-4 times more BTU than any stove I've ever had. I never even heard of dual burner systems but it makes sense to me, it's probably difficult to design a high output burner that will go low enough for simmer, too wide a range. Wolf's concept seems to be that chefs don't need much heat at simmer. Or maybe their high output burners go lower than Vikings at the minimum setting...
I like the look of the Wolf better but I can't say why. I'll know better when I've seen them in the showroom. It seems there's only one dealer around here (Pacific Sales) and they sell both. As far as I can tell they're both about $1,800 (not including tax or installation).
I suspect probably the products are so similar that there won't be any practical difference which I pick. What do you think?
Also, follow up question: I would have preferred a more traditional free standing range but in this real estate market you're lucky to get a house, let alone pick individual features. Housing inventory is so low that bidding wars are rampant, houses are few (some weeks there weren't any for me to see, sometimes even for 2-3 weeks). The only choice I had was can I enjoy living in this house for the rest of my life? And could I win the bidding war? Of course I'm living in the house where both answers were yes!
So I got a gas cooktop and a separate electric oven because that's what the house had. I don't like the electric oven although I haven't used it much (and the broiler is broken although eventually I'll get the home warranty company to send somebody out to fix that. (They won't fix the cooktop because my home inspection said "cooktop needs servicing.)
The question is, should I replace the electric oven with a gas oven? The oven temperature can be set up to 550 F maximum but who knows if it will go that high? The practical aspect for me is that I want to be able to cook good pizza and I'm not sure 550 is enough. Although I did passably with my old oven at about 450... I just started a max heat test and I'll post my results.
One big difference between gas and electric ovens is that gas combustion produces water vapor so it humidifies the oven. Is this going to make a difference when I bake bread? (I doubt the difference would matter cooking things like turkeys, or would it?)
Maybe I should get a fancy oven too, although after spending about $2K on the cooktop, getting a high end oven too might be a bit too pricey for me. Certainly I'd rather have the gourmet cooktop and an ordinary oven than a gourmet oven and an ordinary cooktop.
If I replace the oven do you think I should get one with fancy features? Convection? Steam injection?
Anyway my mind is made up, I'm going to get either the Wolf or the Viking cooktop. Or maybe somebody will add another brand to the list? Anyway I'm pretty excited. I'm not even cleaning the present cooktop (much) because I'm getting the Viking or Wolf as soon as I can make up my mind and get them to install it. (The darned showroom is closed today.)