You have several options when choosing a stove: traditional electric coil, emerging technologies like induction and halogen, and energy-efficient gas. If you are an avid cook, you'll want to take a close look at gas-fueled models. Gas stoves have been preferred by professional chefs for decades because they give instant heat, exceptional temperature control, and the added benefit of visual feedback as the flame is lowered or raised.
The Basics of Gas Stoves
A stove is simply the cooking surface of a range set free of the oven and installed in a kitchen island or countertop to maximize cooking flexibility and efficiency. They are made to sit flush with a countertop surface to present a sleek, stylish look and allow for easy cleanup. If space is limited in your kitchen, corner gas stoves an option. Gas stoves are fueled by natural gas or propane. In the old days you had to use a match to light a pilot light, today's gas stoves feature electronic ignitions: no constantly burning pilot light to let off nasty fumes or waste energy.
Varieties of Gas Stoves for the Home
Gas cooktops are available in sizes from 24" to 48" wide and depths from 8" to 20". You will find four main categories of cooktops: standard, premium, professional, and commercial. Generally speaking, the more you pay, the larger the gas stove and the more features it provides. Standard models provide four composite metal burners of varying heating capability (5,000 - 12,000 btu). They usually offer a black or white enamel finish. Premium stoves offer more heating capability (up to 14,000 btu), cast iron burners (4 to 6 burners), griddle, wok, or grill burner, and glass on glass or colored finishes.
Commercial Gas Stoves
Professional and commercial models offer heavy-duty construction, stainless steel finishes, griddles and grills, downdraft exhausts, up to 8 cast iron burners with at least one 18,000-20,000 btu burner, precise temperature controls, built-in utensil storage, and a host of other features aimed at making the cook's job easier.