The kitchen has long been the hub of the home, and we do not see that changing any time soon. But while certain surface-level trends come and go with each decade – like steel cabinets in the ‘50s and “avocado green” in the ‘70s – other styles reflect larger evolutions in society and technology. Here are three big-picture trends sweeping the luxury kitchen scene in 2019 and beyond.
1. Custom color
Color trends in kitchen appliances are inevitable. Some even outlast the typical trend expiration date; black stainless, for instance, has enjoyed quite a stay in the marketplace. But in direct opposition to the limited color options of yesteryear, many kitchen appliance companies are acknowledging consumers’ desire for customization and individual expression.
KitchenAid now has five different colors available—six if you count stainless. Bertazzoni has played in the color realm for a while, offering a spectrum based on Italian sports cars, like Ferrari red and Lamborghini yellow. Even more, manufacturers are now teaming up with hue experts—Dacor with Sherwin Williams and Viking with Benjamin Moore, for example—to offer custom-color appliances. Consumers can design the look of their kitchen appliances based on the paint manufacturer’s color palette, tailoring their ranges and refrigerators to their distinct personalities.
2. Sous vide cooking
Today, manufacturers are designing sous vide cookers and sealers to keep up with consumers’ ever-increasing interest in high-quality cuisine. Borrowed from the professional culinary world, “sous vide”— “under vacuum” in French—is a cooking technique that uses precise temperature control to deliver consistent, restaurant-quality results. The technique is applied to animal proteins like fish, poultry, and pork, and involves sealing the protein in a vacuum-sealed bag (with or without a marinade), cooking the bag in a precision cooker attached to a pot of water (set to the time/temperature according to the desired level of “doneness”), and then ultimately searing, grilling, or broiling the exterior layer (depending on desired texture and presentation).
3. Connected home
Productivity and connectivity are important in the hustle-and-bustle of today’s households. With WiFi a mainstay in most homes, many manufacturers are creating the ability for people to connect their kitchen appliances to remote-enabled apps like Alexa and Google Home. This feature allows consumers to communicate with their kitchen appliances and become even more efficient with their resources, time, and energy. For example, you can set your oven to preheat or check in on the dish inside while you are working upstairs or gardening out back. Some of these products even include cameras in refrigerators—so you can do a quick remote inventory on your smartphone while on an impromptu grocery-store visit—helping to avoid food waste and multiple shopping trips.
Perhaps the most valuable aspect of connected-home appliances is the proactive repair and maintenance they support. The technology can alert you when your appliance needs attention—perhaps a compressor gone bad or the temperature in the your fridge has risen for an extended period of time. Whatever the case may be, the information goes back to the manufacturer, the manufacturer dispatches those details to a service agent, and the agent calls the owner about the issue. Not only does this notification often happen in a timelier manner than if the owner were to notice the issue on their own, but it also cuts down on the back-and-forth typically required with servicing. Upon arrival to the home, the agent is already aware of the root of the problem and can come prepared with required parts and tools—a one-stop call to nip all issues in the bud.
There you have it. With customized color, restaurant-quality cooking, and connected-home technology, the future of luxury kitchens just got even more exciting.
Mark Hopwood is Director of Sales at Builders Appliance Center, a Ferguson Enterprise and Denver-based appliance showroom that offers brand-name fridges, ovens, washers, dryers and other household essentials. Contact them at 303.789.9945.
Content for this article provided by Builders Appliance Center, a Ferguson Bath, Kitchen and Lighting Showroom.