We pay homage to Gaggenau’s rich heritage while exploring the brand’s life-long commitment to exceptional kitchen design.
For more than 339 years, Gaggenau has been a leading provider of luxury home appliances – nearly a century of which has been dedicated to the kitchen sector. With a reputation for being both avant-garde and timeless, the brand is favoured by architects, designers and consumers world-over looking to create an exceptional kitchen experience. With a firm belief that the kitchen is the heart of the home, Gaggenau’s kitchen appliances go beyond just function and quality; they are a visual statement to be admired and cherished by their owner.
“The more time we spend in our homes, the more important it is to shape them into sanctuaries that support our passions,” expresses Gaggenau Australia’s senior brand communication manager Olya Yemchenko. As Olya goes on to share in this interview; the kitchen is the perfect place to do this – and Gaggenau is the perfect place to start.
Gaggenau’s history can be traced back to 1683, in the depths of the Black Forest, Germany. Could you please tell us more about the brand’s unique heritage?
Olya Yemchenko: In 1683, Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden, a local landowner and one of the most powerful aristocrats of his day, founded an iron forge amid the dense Black Forest in the hamlet of Gaggenau. Being more than 339 years old, we consciously think long-term. Therefore, our designs are avant-garde yet timeless, and we skillfully hand-build our pieces using the finest materials because that is how you create something that will last.
What does it mean to be a pioneer in the kitchen space? How do your appliances embody this?
Olya Yemchenko: To be a pioneer in the kitchen space means to go beyond what is expected; this we embody in the materials we use, the craftspeople we employ and the quality control we eagerly enforce. Our reputation for quality is priceless – and unmatched in our eyes – which is why we invest the time and resources to build upon it.
We inspire at-home culinary masterpieces, all thanks to our understanding of the professional kitchen. We look to the professional kitchen, where everything solely exists to serve the culinary master; where function is everything; and we ruthlessly apply what we learn to our appliances. We always ask ourselves, does this product enable the at-home chef to excel – to pioneer?
People often say the kitchen is the heart of the home. What would you say in support of this statement?
Olya Yemchenko: Our initiation into kitchen appliances began in the 1930s, and since then, we have seen a substantial shift in what people want from their kitchen; the biggest being that the kitchen has evolved from being this purely functional space for preparing meals, to more of a social living space. We see the kitchen as having evolved into the heart of the home, with everyday life revolving around it. The kitchen we speak of – the modern everyday kitchen – represents the harmonious interplay of cooking, living and entertaining.
Depending on the series and materials you opt for, Gaggenau is suitable for a wide range of settings, whether having large groups of people over for dinner or enjoying an intimate evening of culinary creation. Either way, Gaggenau appliances inspire exceptional cuisine while captivating people’s attention with their sculptural presence, epitomising both function and beauty.
What Gaggenau products are cult favourites within the Australian design community?
Olya Yemchenko: Gaggenau is dedicated to providing the at-home chef with the ultimate kitchen experience. Our new range of cooking and cooling appliances do just that, with uncompromising quality and exceptional design. Gaggenau combines centuries of experience to allow their artisans and craftsmen to create appliances that store ingredients perfectly, cook expertly and clean effortlessly.
EB 333 Oven
This standalone oven is a culinary icon. The entire front (all 90 centimetres of it) is the door, coming in at 20 kilos thanks to five layers of glass keeping the outside cool while the inside is a raging 300 degrees celsius. Handcrafted from a single sheet of three-millimetre thick stainless steel, the door is cleverly cantilevered to gently close and easily open while the glass is carefully formulated to insulate without distorting colours.
Steam allows us to elevate our food through the richness of flavour, nutritional value and colour. Since introducing steam into the home kitchen more than twenty years ago, we have relentlessly refined it. Our latest larger combi-steam ovens offer today’s at-home chef assistance via adjustable automatic programs, exceptionally accurate temperature control and an automated cleaning system. We want to inspire our customers to fully master the power of steam.
Grand architecture demands grand interior pieces. Every Gaggenau piece is distinctively designed, exceptionally crafted and offers professional performance, and has been doing so since 1683. The iconic design of our Gaggenau Vario cooling 400 series is no exception. Each product is a piece of architecture in its own right.
Equipped with precisely-controlled climate zones, each modular piece has been crafted to create the ideal conditions to preserve freshness and store the finest wines. The spacious stainless steel interior enables you to arrange your ingredients the same way an artist arranges their paint. Cleverly positioned LED lights and oak timber wine trays also nod to the exclusive culinary culture ingrained in Gaggenau’s history.
Why do you believe Gaggenau resonates so deeply with leading architects and designers world over?
Olya Yemchenko:At Gaggenau, we take pride in our appliances being the pinnacle of the kitchen, which inspires architects and designers to do the same. By embracing the professional cooking lifestyle Gaggenau offers, architects and designers are gifting their clients with the possibility of at-home culinary masterpieces.
With a distinctly recognisable design that stands out, our appliances have been crafted to be admired– within homes equally deserving of admiration. We take a conscientious approach to each design, creating exceptionally functional objet d’art with clean lines that blend with kitchen designs and interiors as a whole.
Materials are on display and therefore need to be exceptional; our stainless steel, glass, enamel and aluminium are of the highest quality and are proudly brought to the fore by architects and designers. It is not that a Gaggenau appliance implores you to notice it; you just do.
The BRUTAL Kitchen by Piet Boon | Photography courtesy of Studio Piet Boon
How is your new Sydney showroom, launching next year, unique from your Melbourne showroom designed by Carr?
Olya Yemchenko:The design for the Gaggenau Sydney showroom was led by Munich-based design firm 1zu33 director Hendrik Muller – a judge for the Gaggenau Kitchen of the Year Design Contest 2023. The space is housed inside a historical building in Surry Hills, an area known for its many restaurants and small independent labels.
There are many similarities between the Melbourne and Sydney showrooms, but you’ll see differences in the size of the space (it’s larger than its Melbourne counterpart), its materiality and its vignettes, all of which were chosen to reflect the lifestyle of the Gaggenau consumer.
The key focus for Gaggenau Sydney is to deliver an emotional experience and emphasise the brand’s luxury position. A new Chef’s Table will demonstrate this, highlighting the brand’s precision and unwavering performance that has been associated with the professional kitchen concept of the finest restaurants for decades.
Olya Yemchenko:For all of our audiences, the concept of luxury has moved beyond the amassing of objects. Their homes exhibit their personality and passions rather than their materialistic belongings. We anticipate the entries for the Gaggenau Kitchen of the Year Design Contest 2023 to highlight this.
The more time we spend in our homes, the more important it is to shape them into sanctuaries which support our passions. Wine is a perfect example of this; we are currently seeing a trend toward displaying wine collections in prominent spaces such as the kitchen. Wine climate cabinets are not only adept at providing functional storage solutions, but they are also a beautiful way to showcase your wine collection. They can enhance the prestige of the kitchen.
The calibre of entries for the inaugural 2021 awards was exceptional and we anticipate the bar will be raised once more in this next instalment.