The main photo is a closeup view of a Fisher & Paykel minimal integrated kitchen of a 915 square-foot home designed by architect Oli Booth in Auckland, New Zealand. Photo by Sam Hartnett.
We are proponents of making homeownership, and life for that matter, easier with technology, as more time should be spent enjoying your home with minimal stress. Much like the advent of the microwave oven and later the air fryer, consumers often do not realize how convenient new appliance technology can be. Once they embrace and adopt a new method of performing everyday tasks, they soon wonder how they ever functioned without it.
A recent evening at the Fisher & Paykel Experience Center in Southern California made us appreciate some incredibly innovative technology for the kitchen, despite already owning several premium, luxury appliances in our own home.
In short, Fisher & Paykel’s approach to the modern kitchen is eye opening. Those fortunate to attend their Mastery of Temperature Experience will rethink their own kitchens and question whether their current culinary appliances are truly addressing their key needs and desired lifestyles. Those already sold on the F&P brand offerings will have a tremendous opportunity to fine tune their selection of models, features and design styles.
This article shares what we learned at Fisher & Paykel’s Mastery of Temperature Experience with an overview of Fisher & Paykel’s latest iteration of innovation for the kitchen.
Table of Contents
- Fisher & Paykel’s Approach to Culinary Innovation
- The Importance of Retail Experience Centers
- Fisher & Paykel’s Mastery of Temperature Experience
- Lifestyle Trends Meshing with Fisher & Paykel’s Culinary Innovation
- Fisher & Paykel’s Experience Center Locations
Fisher & Paykel’s Approach to Culinary Innovation
Although not as well-known as other luxury kitchen brands here in the US, Fisher & Paykel (F&P) enjoys a stellar global reputation, especially in Australia and in its native New Zealand, where it has been revered since its founding in 1934 by Sir Woolf Fisher and Maurice Paykel. The company started as an importer of household appliances and later transitioned into manufacturing a wide range of innovative household products.
Owing to its native origins of sustainable living, Fisher & Paykel has consistently been at the forefront of design and performance in true Kiwi style. New Zealand comprises of two primary islands and natives know that efficient sustainability is the key to successful living. Not surprisingly, the country is ranked 10th in the Green Living Rankings, a poll published by U.S. News & World Report.
Taking a page from their native land’s mission, Fisher & Paykel has designed appliances that are tailored for everyday needs with sustainable design front and center. Appliances are multi-functional, while also incorporating transformable design principles to suit varied lifestyles and changing situations and needs.
The company has incorporated some of the most innovative features across several distinct design styles:
This diverse design approach translates to “something for everyone and every situation”, with product availability in over 50 countries around the world.
In Fisher & Paykel parlance, their product offerings are described as “Beauty by Choice“.
If consumers could only know one thing about Fisher & Paykel, the self-assured brand would unmistakably want the world to know that F&P are engineers of temperature, first and foremost.
Fisher & Paykel are engineers of temperature
Once this focus on temperature is recognized by outsiders, F&P’s approach to household products and innovation begin to make a lot of sense to the untrained eye.
The Importance of Retail Experience Centers
Last year, we wrote about the critical role of experiential retail centers when shopping for home products and how this trend will continue to grow in importance for homeowners making “big ticket” purchases. The concept of “Try Before You Buy” is even more important for items such as appliances, to ensure the fit, functionality and design that will play critical roles within sizeable household investments, such as a major kitchen remodel.
Another important role of retail experience centers is to educate prospective customers on new product features and new usage methods, such as preserving and preparing food.
Experience centers are becoming a must-have resource for quality conscious consumers who desire to make the most of future purchases for their homes. Unfortunately, stories of kitchen remodels that failed to live up to the original vision and high expectations are not unusual. Sources of remodel dissatisfaction can include:
Consumers who experience “purchase regret” after a major capital outlay often cite technology obsolescence and short-lived trends as having clouded their judgment. Purchasing appliances without understanding maintenance requirements or the failure of products to meet changing lifestyles are but two reasons for taking the time to visit an experiential retail center.
It’s important to understand if the technology you are purchasing will likely be widely adopted for years to come, or whether this technology may prove to be a fad that will be abandoned as soon as the trend dies off.
Experience centers can help consumers make the right choices for their current and future needs as the interactive nature of seeing the products, in their natural environment, is crucial for conceptualizing your future kitchen. This in-person exercise is crucial to envision the functionality and fit of a new kitchen in your home and how it will mesh with your desired culinary lifestyle.
The first step in deciding on an appliance type and brand is to understand your primary uses and expected benefits. Enter Fisher & Paykel’s Mastery of Temperature Experience.
Fisher & Paykel’s Mastery of Temperature Experience
Fisher & Paykel Global Experience Centers offer events around the world which help educate professional designers and consumers on their indoor and outdoor products, plus the art of culinary perfection. The idea is to showcase the power, precision and ease-of-use of the many appliances that the company has in its kitchen product portfolio. The end goal of these culinary centers is to explain cooking techniques and performance as a means to creating exquisite food that’s nutritious, delicious and convenient to prepare.
We were fortunate to have attended an F&P culinary event, aptly named The Mastery of Temperature, at their 7,000 square foot Costa Mesa, California experience center that showcases 103 appliances. Our hosts demonstrated several F&P cooking products, under the direction of Executive Chef Jenny Messing, and how important temperature is throughout the process of preparing food from refrigerator to plate.
We learned our most important insight from Chef Jenny, who explained that foods with protein, such as red meats, pork and poultry, should be thawed in steps from freezer to refrigerator to countertop before cooking. This is an important aspect to the theme of temperature, as the end result will yield better flavor and texture, as well as prevent foodborne illnesses from bacteria.
Meat and poultry should always be at room temperature immediately prior to cooking as ice crystals formed during the freezing process can have a negative effect on the final texture and flavor. These same ice crystals, after thawing to room temperature, are the building blocks for all of those delicious drippings in the pan that create the “gravy” or “umami” for so many dishes.
Taking a piece of meat from a cold temperature to a high temperature is referred to as “thermal shock”, which will result in dry meat. Understanding how temperatures ultimately impact the taste and texture of food is perhaps the genius behind F&Ps line of kitchen products.
Starting with quality ingredients and being mindful of the temperature setting throughout the food preparation journey is an important concept that is the difference between “okay” salmon filets to a scrumptious, gastronomic masterpiece.
Here’s what we learned about the three products that really caught our attention during our culinary experience:
- Fisher & Paykel’s Multi-Zone Refrigerator
- Fisher & Paykel’s Combi-Convection Steam Oven
- Fisher & Paykel’s Induction Stove Top
Fisher & Paykel’s Multi-Zone Refrigerator
The beauty of an F&P refrigerator is that it provides incredibly flexible temperature control through its multi-zoned architecture. In Fisher & Paykel’s own words:
The best refrigeration gives you the control to set the right temperature with the right humidity for your food, and the flexibility to care for it with products that keep ingredients fresher, longer. Configure a cooling solution to match every type of food, in the perfect design style to match your kitchen aesthetic.
For example, the same refrigerator drawer can be zoned as a:
- Pantry: sometimes you just need extra storage for items during the holidays
- Chiller: not frozen nor room temperature, just the right temperature at the right time
- Refrigerator: extend your refrigeration space by setting temperature to 38° F
- Wine Storage: for that perfect red or that chilled bottle of champagne, choose your setting as you see best
- Freezer: at 0° F frozen foods are secure and well-maintained
Once purchased, picked or caught, food should be refrigerated or chilled prior to cooking preparation. In other words, staving off harmful bacteria and maintaining crispness are two important functions of the refrigeration or chill function.
The transformability of the drawer allows the same appliance to have multiple functions depending on your changing needs.
Fisher & Paykel’s Combi-Convection Steam Oven
Culinary perfection is only achieved with knowledge on what is occurring chemically and physically with foods, especially with proteins.
Understanding how food reacts to temperatures is crucial to bringing out the best flavor and preserving texture, e.g.:
- Cold from a freezer or fridge
- Room temps from ambient air
- Heat from an oven or stovetop
Mastering the science and technique of preparing a meal using a combination steam oven is well worth the effort.
Fisher & Paykel’s 24″ Combination Convection-Steam Oven offers true flexibility with 23 possible oven functions, including:
- Convection-Steam Combination
- Air Fry
- Crisp Regenerate
Steam is ideal for defrosting: set your oven to 105 degrees F, and in less than 30 minutes you have fully defrosted meats with no partial cooking. The homeostasis in temperature is controlled for even, flawless defrosting.
Vegetables can be steamed to perfection allowing them to retain their color, flavor and nutrients. Unlike stovetop steaming, oven steaming is more controlled and allows for greater quantities of food preparation at one time.
The combination oven also allows you to switch seamlessly between functions:
- Convection to perfect a beef tenderloin like a professional chef
- Air Fry for reduced fat and better health
- Crisp Regenerate for leftovers such as pizza, keeping the crust crisp and full of flavor
With a guided touchscreen screen, home chefs can follow recipes, set timers, and perform all functions in one location.
To learn more about steam cooking, see:
- Steam & Bake: Steam Oven Recipes and Tips
- Cooking with Steam: Steam & Combi Oven Recipes for Home Cooks
Fisher & Paykel’s Induction Cooktop
Induction stove tops are becoming the preferred appliance of home chefs, due to their efficiency and versatility for delivering precise cooking with better control.
The two part system relies on an electric current to heat a coil of copper wire, located below the glass cooktop surface, to create an electromagnetic field of energy. The second part is the iron pan, which must be magnetic to react with the electromagnetic energy, to transform current through the pan’s surface and thus heat.
In other words, it is the combination of the copper coils and the magnetic pan that creates the heat. Fisher & Paykel’s five zoned induction cooktop features fast and accurate temperature control, as pots and pans are heated evenly across the bottom surface.
Imagine you can go from boil to simmer in just seconds, while effortlessly controlling all cooktops with the 6″ touchscreen. Cooking time is more efficient as it takes less time to reach your desired cooking temperature.
Precise heating allows you to maintain a constant temperature without “overcooking” or “boiling over” which often happens with gas and electric cooktops.
Fisher & Paykel’s product selection allows you to select and arrange the right cooktops according to your normal usage pattern and needs.
Safety is key, as induction stovetops remain cool to the touch as only the points of contact with a pan’s iron/magnetic bottom and the copper coiled heating element create radiant heat. All of the electromagnetic energy passes through the copper coils in the cooktop and directly into the pan.
Lifestyle Trends Meshing with Fisher & Paykel’s Culinary Innovation
Having observed and experienced the capabilities of Fisher & Paykel’s latest culinary appliances in action, we are quite impressed and optimistic for the company’s future in the US market.
Most importantly, we came away inspired by F&P’s focus on the changing lifestyles of their customers and striving to make products that mesh well with their key needs.
“We see healthy living as the new luxury”
– Daniel Witten-Hannah, CEO, Fisher & Paykel
Here are several important examples of emerging or growing trends where we believe Fisher & Paykel is developing innovative, on-trend products:
- Spending More Time at Home: more time at home means cooking more at home which translates to needing to preserve food longer and employ inventive ways to prepare it more effectively and conveniently
- Multigenerational Homes: F&P appliances can accommodate a wider range of recipes and cooking methods (e.g. steam: bread, fish, seafood, poultry, vegetables, dumplings, desserts, etc.)
- Home Wellness: F&P products are conducive for healthier homes and healthier lifestyles (e.g. convenient nutritious methods and recipes)
- Indoor-Outdoor Living: F&P indoor appliances with their DCS line of outdoor kitchen appliances enables their customers to enjoy their homes more fully, with food playing a central role in social gatherings
- Transformable Design & Functional Flexibility: On-going adaptability of their products will allow homeowner customers to stay in a beloved home longer, safely and efficiently. F&P’s inherent product flexibility will also make a positive impact in terms of home resale value.
- Frugal Luxury: Investing in a kitchen that can bring fine dining and vacation resort experiences to one’s home affordably and conveniently in the long-term
One parting cultural note, we would be remiss not sharing from our F&P culinary experience, is the Maori saying of “Kia Ora” which literally means “have life” or “be healthy”.
Similar in spirit to how Hawaiians use the term “Aloha”, “Kia Ora” can be used as an informal greeting or farewell equivalent to “hi”, “hello”, or “goodbye”. It can be used as an expression of thanks similar to “cheers”, as well.
Fisher & Paykel’s Experience Center Locations
Here are links to Fisher & Paykel’s current set of state-of-the art experience centers:
For consumers in the United States, we encourage you to reach out to resellers of Fisher & Paykel products who may be able to demonstrate their appliances in person:
Lastly, here are two links for further inspiration. The home design projects featuring Fisher & Paykel appliances and designs are exceptional!
More Kitchen Design Articles
- Refrigerator Tech that Keeps Produce Fresh & Nutritious Longer
- The Difference Between Home Renovation & Remodeling Projects
- Need Renovation Inspiration? Try These Innovative Design Resources!
- Signs That It’s Time to Replace Your Kitchen Cabinetry
- 3 Wellness Design Tips for Your Kitchen
- Must-Have Products for Home Entertaining
- Increase Your Home’s Energy Efficiency with Daylight Harvesting
- Sanitize Your Home with Light Fixtures – Yes, Light Fixtures!
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