Show Reveals New Ideas Cooking in the Kitchen

by WOHe

Show Reveals New Ideas Cooking in the
Kitchen


COLOGNE Changing homeowner attitudes toward cooking, as in the
past, are shaping the latest generation of upscale kitchen designs
and products and cooking, as in the past, once again took center
stage at the 2000 International Furniture Fair, conducted here last
month.

The massive trade show featuring the products of more than 1,500
companies from some 50 nations, including the U.S. is considered
the leading showcase for the latest European trends in kitchen
cabinetry and related products. Many new products and concepts
displayed at the trade show’s Kitchen and Bathroom Center, in fact,
eventually become trends in upscale American homes.

“Cooking is life; cooking is a daily activity, a form of
relaxation, a hobby or profession,” said Elisabeth Nurnberger, a
spokesperson for the seven-day show. This year’s International
Furniture Fair, said Nurnberger, featured an a la carte menu of
kitchens all focused on cooking from a small “warm up” kitchen,
offering ample storage space, to a gourmet kitchen for singles and
friends, to large family kitchens, designed to accommodate
individual cooking preferences. Also highlighted, she said, was a
“rich abundance of styles and ambiences” available to European and
American kitchen designers.

Attracting a great deal of attention at the International
Furniture Fair was the principle of “single modules,” suitable for
all styles of cooking. According to Antonio Citterio, a well-known
Italian designer largely responsible for perpetuating the trend,
design style originates from professional chefs, who separate the
tasks of cooking, storing, washing up, rinsing and disposing into
distinct areas in an effort to ensure greater hygiene.

Citterio’s designs feature the cooking area set into an island
on which more than one cook can work.

Washing and rinsing are separated, while an especially deep sink
with a shower attachment ensures that cleaning is done
efficiently.

Based on a “rotation principle,” frequently-used utensils are
within easy reach, whereas a ladder is provided for reaching
less-frequently used items, such as fondue pots. In addition, there
are open shelves beneath the cooker with either fixed or extendible
bottoms for storing pots and pans. High cabinet units also feature
an array of open shelves and flexible panels on which hooks,
baskets or shelves can be attached. At the same time, food
preparation and other work surfaces are set at different heights;
some are equipped with a small dividing wall made of glass or metal
to protect against spraying.

Cabinets in the kitchens on display this year in Cologne
generally featured wide drawers fitted with pluggable wooden pegs
which keep stacks of plates in place, Nurnberger observed. Serving
plates are inserted vertically into a rack with a grooved bottom,
which can also be used to transport the crockery and reattached to
the cabinet units after use.

Also on display was an “intelligent” tray equipped with sugar
pot, pot of marmalade, condiments, serviettes and the like which
turns into a table extension in time for the next meal. Trash
disposal units featured odor seals and extendible refuse separation
panels. Also prominently used throughout the kitchens on display
was wood, metal and glass, augmented by colorful synthetics and
natural stone.

“In the past, the type of kitchen fixtures and fittings were
determined strictly by the space that was available, or the size of
one’s wallet, leaving only the front design of the standard parts
to our own personal taste,” Nurnberger said. “However, this year’s
International Furniture Fair has demonstrated that all this has
changed radically.”

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