KBB Collective | The Designers' Corner

Aug 18 2010

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The kitchen is “haute” once again with inline cooking

A hot design trend in Europe for the past several years, “inline” cooking, has finally arrived in the U.S.

In the chaotic atmosphere of a restaurant kitchen, where a intricate ballet of boiling water, haute1open flames, sharp pointy things, as well as a cast of many, all moving about to create a meal for one or 101, we find that safety and efficiency are still at the heart of the primal kitchen. To avoid burning or scalding oneself and to keep from reaching over a pot or pan to stir another, we find the burners are all neatly aligned in a single horizontal row, all within easy reach and control of the chef. Now we find this simple, but brilliant idea available for the American home.

Inline cooking doesn’t end with the cooktop as we find that this new aesthetic has moved to built-in cooking equipment as well. The 60 cm x 60 cm (24-in. x24-in.) oven size has been the European standard for more than 30 years. It was introduced in Germany in the mid-1970s as a form of consumer protection.

This standard form of oven size would allow consumers to replace their oven with newer models with new options, features and aesthetics—and not on the size of the hole left by the old oven. The U.S. appliance industry could learn a thing or two from their European cousins, as almost every U.S. manufacturer builds its product to its on standard, forcing the American consumer to purchase a new oven from the same supplier or having to remodel the existing kitchen to allow for new appliances.

Now, for the first time in nearly 30 years, a new size matrix of 60 cm x 45 cm (24 in. x18 in.) has been introduced into the U.S. market by the Europeans. It was first launched by a few European manufacturers in the form of a steam convection oven and then as an integrated coffee machine.


Currently, most German, Italian and Spanish appliance manufacturers are offering a complete range of kitchen products, including standard convection, steam convection, micro-convection, as well as coffee systems and, more recently in the U.S. market, a fully integrated TV to round out the matrix.

If you thought that the kitchen was “hot” before, it just got “hauteur” as this new aesthetic opens up a whole new design opportunity for personalization, with the ability to introduce inline cooking as well as the opportunity to place smaller and multifunctional cooking elements throughout the kitchen and living areas.

Kevin Henry

This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 18th, 2010 at 6:00 AM and is filed under Kitchen Design, Products, Trends. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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