So, you want to remodel your kitchen.

Good choice!

According to, renovating your kitchen is a home improvement that gives you one of the biggest returns on your investment. And where should you start? With the appliances.

Today’s top appliances are more than just machines. They’re sleek fashion statements with multi-functionality and conveniences that your grandma never dreamed of. Let’s dive into the world of high-end kitchen appliances.

The national average ROI for a major upscale kitchen remodel is almost 54%.

The ROI for a minor kitchen remodel is over 80%! –

Quality Matters

The appliances you buy have everything to do with HOW you use your kitchen. Are you whipping up 5-course meals from scratch or warming up take-out? Are you a family of 2 or 5?

But the common denominator in your choices should always be quality.

“When we do kitchen renovations, we recommend installing high-quality appliances from companies like Sub-Zero, Wolf, & Cove, Miele, and Blue Star,” explains Ben Srigley, Touchstone owner. “They are well-recognized and durable luxury brands.”

Quality matters in so many ways:

  • High-end appliances may cost more upfront, but they pay for themselves in longevity and reliability. Brooke Chandler, Client Relations Manager of ABW Appliances, told us they’ve seen kitchen remodels where the only appliance that stays is the twenty-five-year-old Sub-Zero refrigerator. Compare that to the average fridge lifespan of only ten years! And many customers (maybe even you!) have horror stories of refrigerators breaking down even sooner.
  • High-end appliances have more style options. Blue Star, for example, offers ranges in more than 750 colors! Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove appliances allow for custom front panels so your refrigerator doors or dishwasher blend right into your cabinets.
  • High-end appliances have luxury options like custom cooktop configurations, integrated sous-vide, or smart features.

Figure 1- In this Touchstone remodel, the Sub-Zero refrigerator doors match the cabinetry, giving the kitchen a seamless look. And check out the pop of color from the Blue Star oven!

Plus, high-end appliances raise the resale value of your home. As our friends from ABW put it, “Buyers looking for homes in affluent areas expect to see these high-end brands in the kitchen. These appliances have become the ‘jewelry of the home.’”

At Touchstone, we have a few favorite appliances that go beyond the standard, adding FUNCTIONALITY and FLAIR to your kitchen. Here are our top three picks:

1. Speed Ovens

Speed ovens can be a terrific addition to your kitchen. “Speed ovens maximize the use of available space while enhancing functionality,” explains Ben.

Speed ovens are small, sleek, and FAST. They combine convection, microwave, and, often, a grill element. That gives you cooking with the convenience of a microwave, but the taste of a conventional oven. When you need to get food on the table quickly, they’re a great way to do that without compromising on taste.

“They’re small, so they don’t replace full-size ovens, but speed ovens can be installed with a full-size oven using a trim kit to match seamlessly,” adds Chandler.

Figure 2- The modern ovens in this Touchstone kitchen remodel are sleek and compact.

2. Microwave Drawers

A microwave drawer is exactly what it sounds like: A microwave that pulls out like a drawer, instead of a box with a hinged door. They’re built into your cabinets, giving your kitchen a “sophisticated, minimalistic look,” says Ben.

Microwave drawers are gaining popularity for a few reasons:

  1. They save you counter space since they’re built into the cabinets.
  2. A waist-high drawer makes taking out hot food less dangerous.
  3. Microwave drawers offer a “lock with passcode” feature to make them kid-proof.


Figure 3- Drawer microwaves are convenient and safe. Photo credit: Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove

To be sure your drawer microwave will fit into any existing cabinetry, the experts at ABW recommend a pre-site visit with your contractor or an appliance specialist. (Or, with the current COVID-19 restrictions, a virtual pre-site.) “Every space is different, and there are no cookie-cutter solutions. Existing cabinet size and access to power need to be evaluated.”

3. Ager Refrigerators

As steak aficionados at Touchstone, we’re especially excited about dry-ager fridges. “They empower everyday users to prepare steaks to the level of those served at the best restaurants in the country,” enthuses Ben.

Dry-aging is a centuries-old technique that produces steaks and meats with incredible flavor. The meats are hung, open, in a refrigerator to rest and age for four to six weeks, until they reach their peak taste. Dry-ager refrigerators keep the meat at a safe temperature throughout the drying process.

According to DRY-AGER, a dry-ager manufacturer, “The secret is oxygen, that teases the natural enzymes of the meat over time.”

Figure 4 – A dry-ager refrigerator. Photo credit: DRY-AGER.


Dry-aged steaks were always the province of the professionals at exclusive restaurants. That’s why we’re so enthusiastic about introducing these new made-for-home models. They bring steakhouse level of taste and quality to your own kitchen.

Buy once, buy right!

-ABW Appliance

And one final piece of advice from ABW Appliance: “Buy once, buy right!”

That means consulting with the pros before investing in a high-end appliance. In their words, clearly speaking from experience, “no matter how hard you try, you cannot fit a 48” refrigerator in a 42” space!” A professional will make sure that your appliances fit perfectly with your space and lifestyle for years to come.

Are you ready to get started with a kitchen remodeling project?

Don’t defer your dreams! Contact us so we can get started planning your beautiful renovation.