Here at the Pond we need a new refrigerator. I know this sounds simple, yet it is not. There is more to this issue than just what style; French door, bottom freezer, side by side or what finish; stainless, white, panel ready?
Actually the contractor is down stairs making a lot of demolitions noise. In our 1942 vintage home the vertical space for a refrigerator is 67.75". That has been just fine for the past 70 years but now refrigerators have gotten taller. To be fair it is possible to buy a refrigerator within this height restriction but these are not our best option. Too bad because they are thousands fewer dollars than the type we do need.
What is needed is a newer counter depth refrigerator because it will give us the clearance necessary for an island. Our Kitchen is large and open with a lot of empty space in the middle. We could have put a small freestanding butcher block in there years ago but instead have been stuck on the notion of having one that was created from a modified vintage cabinet with a marble top for pastry making. We actually do not make any kind of pastries but that has not weighed heavily on our thoughts.
Our other big issue is the cabinetry in our Kitchen was all built in place on site. These days cabinet boxes are cleated onto walls then fitted with door or drawer fronts. In our house the cabinets were built in place by carpenters which means they cannot be unmounted from the wall because they are part of the walls. Thus, it was necessary for us to hire a master finish carpenter to modify existing cabinetry in situ.
Of course, so far, as is typical with we Pond dwellers, we have agreed on the big picture but not the details. Since we were going to have this carpenter on site we decided it was wisest to have him make some desired corrections to a bath window and the entry transoms and ... well the list is growing by the hour.
At www.AntiqueAppliances.com they have spectacular fully restored vintage stoves. This beautiful Wedgewood stove has 6 burners, 2 ovens , all new interiors and beautifully restored porcelain and chrome finishes. Not allowing for shipping or installation, the cost is about $8,000. A brand new cobalt blue Aga cooker is $8,000 - $14,000 also not including shipping or installation. Neither option is within budget. What Blowfish has a hankering for is a dual fuel stove with at least 5 gas burners and
a pair of electric-convection ovens. And, he wants stainless steel which I do not. Is anyone surprised?
As it turns out there are two USA companies that still make a 40" appliance with dual fuel. Kenmore and Frigidaire. Both are made in the same factory, look identical and share the same bad reviews from unhappy cooks, bakers and remodelers. They do have a friendly price point at less than half the restored ones or the basic Aga. The vintage stoves are not dually fueled. You can get a restored one as a gas or an electric unit but not both. This is not satisfactory to Blowfish. He wants what he wants and sees no point in paying thousands for what he does not want.
Naturally I have been searching for the compromise solution.
I even researched without getting out my passport or hopping onto a plane to Italy where they know how to make appliances which speak to me. Unfortunately they are not in the budget. Since the restored Wedgewood has been vetoed because it is an all gas appliance, I thought this dual fuel Ilve would be a nice compromise.
But, since the enamel is available in cobalt blue I thought I could compromise on the stainless. Unfortunately Blowfish was not thinking this was any sort of compromise. He did not even ask about the shipping from Italy or the installation charges before saying " No! Fishy, No!" I was hoping for a " Yes! Fishy, Yes!"
So far we have agreed to panel ready refrigerator and dishwasher if we go with a stainless cooker. If we go with a white cooker with a stainless or chrome top then we need not spend the additional thousands for the panel ready options. We would just buy white finishes which are the least expensive. I think this is reasonable but I am only one vote. I do know however, that there are three votes to be had:
(1) Blowfish and
(1) Blowfish's stomach.
I keep thinking that last vote will land on my page after a month or two of no cooker at all.
Alas there is also the vote from "expedience".
Today, when the carpenter was leaving he said,
"I will need the dimensions for the new refrigerator by tomorrow."