The kitchen of the future

Home Front

September 13, 1998|By Karol V. Menzie | Karol V. Menzie,SUN STAFF

It's the 21st century - do you know where your kitchen is? Right at the center of the family, and right at the forefront of technology, according to Hafele America, which makes cabinets, furniture and cabinet hardware, and according to Hanley-Wood, publisher of Builder, Remodeling, Building Products and other trade publications for the construction industry.

Among predictions from a "trendsetter symposium" sponsored by Hafele: Time-stressed families will be reclaiming "the heart of the home" for meals, hobbies, studying and family activities, as well as for cooperative meal preparation.

Layouts will be open to make interaction easier, and appliances will be raised for easier accessibility. Duplicate appliances - sinks, microwaves, stoves, dishwashers and even refrigerators - will allow different tasks to take place at the same time. And storage will be customized with pull-down and pull-out units that keep everything in its place.

Hanley-Wood foresees sophisticated ovens that use several cooking modes - convection, conventional and microwave - and are computerized to automate meal preparation; garbage disposals developed by NASA that are powered by water, not electricity; counter tops that incorporate anti-microbial protection; and sleek, stainless-steel commercial-type appliances.

Here are some forward-looking appliances:


Thermador has teamed up with Enersyst, a research and development company, to create the JetDirect oven, which directs small jets of air into food being cooked. The system can greatly reduce cooking times - for instance, chocolate-chip cookies that take 10 to 12 minutes in a conventional oven cook in 2 minutes in the JetDirect. When it's released, probably early next year, it will come in a double configuration, with the JetDirect on the top and a standard thermal-convection oven in the bottom. For more information, call 800-656-9226.


From New Zealand's Fisher & Paykel comes the dishwasher-as-drawer. Units can be installed singly or in pairs, with each unit functioning independently. A single drawer handles half a load; two drawers, a full load. The DishDrawer, which uses as little as 2.4 gallons of water per load, comes in black, white and stainless steel, or can be adapted for cabinet fronts. Suggested retail price for one drawer is about $999; two NTC drawers are about $1,599. For dealers and information, call 888-936-7872.


A damper that adjusts to keep the interior cold even when the door is left open, a beverage compartment that keeps drinks chilly, a locking compartment that can keep nonfood items such as medicine or film safe, a water-filtration system for dispensing drinking water, and freezer baskets that slide out so food doesn't get lost on the back of shelves are some of the features of the Maytag Dual Cool side-by-side refrigerator/freezer. Maytag says the new models are 50 percent quieter than earlier ones. The Dual Cool comes in 21-, 23-, 25-, 27- and 29-inch versions. For dealers, prices or other information, call 800-688-9900.


* Saving money when decorating your home will be the subject of a free seminar by Kimberly Causey, author of the best-selling book "The Insider's Guide to Buying Home Furniture," at 7 p.m. tomorrow at the Barnes & Noble bookstore at 8123 Honeygo Blvd., White Marsh. For more infor-mation, call 410-933-9670.

* "Practical Landscape Design" will be the subject of a free slide lecture by horticulturist Tony Dove, who is in charge of the 140 acres of gardens at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington. The event takes place at 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Church of the Redeemer, 5603 N. Charles St. The talk is sponsored by the Horticultural Society of Maryland.

* More than a dozen homes, churches and other buildings will be featured on the 29th annual Candlelight Walking Tour of the historic district in Chestertown, on Maryland's Eastern Shore. The tour runs from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $20 and are available at ticket booths in town. Proceeds benefit the Geddes-Piper House, headquarters of the Historical Society of Kent County. For more information, call 410-778-5328.

* Home crafts from more than 50 Maryland artists are featured at Maryland Craft & Antique Gallery shops at Belvedere Square and the Village of Cross Keys. Saturday, join local celebrities whose names are on the Baltimore Bicentennial Quilt - created by nationally noted Baltimore quilter Barbara Pietila - for a wine and cheese party from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Belvedere Square location, 521 E. Belvedere Ave. For more information, call 410-435-6539.

Pub Date: 9/13/98

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