Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Morphy Richards 43974 Accents

Over the years, the humble kettle has constantly been shaped and fashioned to compliment the kitchen in whatever style is considered modern at the time. This model by the UK's Morphy Richards demonstrates a quietly contemporary example of the current modern trends.

The Accents model sports a modest 1.5 litre capacity, but boasts many of the features one would be looking for in a modern kettle; it has a removable and washable limescale filter, 360 degree base, concealed element and 3kW quick boil power rating as standard. Its appearance is understated but modern, stainless steel with a smooth red finish and a pleasing roundedness, not particularly eye-catching but a subtle fit to most contemporary kitchens since it retains a traditional kettle shape.

Then again, how can one really define what the "traditional" shape of a kettle is? Sure, this model looks like a kettle, but so does the one depicted in the banner, which is a remarkably different shape as well as having its handle on the top. Even that barmy Legion Of Doom from DeLonghi reviewed earlier is (at least vaguely) recognisable as a kettle. Essentially, pretty much any heatable basic container can be regarded a kettle so long as it has a lid and a spout near the top. One day I would like to see a kettle in the shape of, oh I dunno, a donkey or something, with a spout bursting out of the poor quadruped's face while a square portion on its back (perhaps a saddle?) can be removed to insert one's gunky tap water into. Come to think of it, a camel might be a better idea. The hump could in theory be fashioned into a lid shape anyway. Plus it has a reputation for spitting so that would explain the spout.

Originally at the £60 mark from the manufacturer direct, the Accents can be found from some retailers for half the price. This model is a nicely understated fit for many contemporary kitchens, though one simple fact remains: the camel kettle is a brilliant idea, and I am a flaming genius.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Breville VKJ160

If there's one esssential item every household needs, it is a reliable, long-lasting cordless jug kettle. The highly revered Australian manufacturer Breville prides itself on delivering this promise with its innovative and respectable range of household appliances.

Perhaps better known for its toasters, Breville's kettle range certainly isn't to be sniffed at. Take this model for example, the VKJ160. It has 3kW of power, allowing for a quick boil, a sleek stainless steel finish and water gauges on both sides, which illuminate in a blue light to indicate the boil, perhaps also reassuring the consumer of the purity of the water. It has a concealed element, which is easy to clean and safe from limescale, a non-slip 360 degree rotational base and safety lock lid to help prevent spillage.

One drawback to this model, however, is its slightly lower storage capacity of 1.5 litres, which can prove to be a little inconvenient in a world where many other kettles have a 1.7 litre capacity as standard. Not ideal if you have a great deal of company on a regular basis, though one has to admit it certainly looks the part. I suppose you could fill it further if you really needed to, though I would never recommend overfilling a kettle as it may well lead to a messy worktop, possible burns and, if situated too near to a socket, a potential electrical fire. You wouldn't want that, would you? All your posessions, your family photos, your golf trophies, that ribbon you won for coming 5th in the national amateur breakdancing contest (Heat B), all reduced to mere cinders in an instant, because you foolishly chose to put that little bit extra into the kettle? Maybe someone gets hospitalised, your family leaves you, you have to start your whole life from scratch, if you're less fortunate. No! Never, ever, overfill your kettle! The "MAX" is there for a bloody good reason!

Recommended retail price for the Breville stands at £39.99, though it can be found for less from certain retailers, with some prices beneath the £30 range. A stylish kettle that wouldn't look out of place in most homes, though best suited for quieter households due to its limited capacity.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

DeLonghi Brillante KBJ3001.BK

The Italians have often been associated with style, taste, beauty and a remarkable sense of fashion, whatever the endeavour. Their fine craftsmanship is no different in the world of kettles, as is proven by this stylistic and eye-catching model by Italian manufacturers DeLonghi.

This 3kW model, from the glamorous Brillante range, has a 1.7 litre capacity, 360 degree detachable swivel base and a remarkably quick boiling time that allows even the inefficient consumer to make a quick cuppa without the unnecessary waiting time. The Brillante is also an ideal model to use in regions with a particularly hard water supply, with its detachable and rewashable anti-limescale filter. Furthermore, the stainless-steel element is concealed allowing for further prevention from limescale, which will result in a longer life.

The model has a recommended price of around £59.99, though it can be found brand new for less than £50 from some stores. Whether you find it desirable or not, however, depends entirely on whether you would be comfortable having an item akin to the dismembered lower half of a robot Mary Poppins sitting on your kitchen worktop for year after year. I mean seriously, look at it. Many consumers would consider this a monstrosity, I know I would. The base and the handle are sleek enough, but the jagged triangular effect does nothing to rescue the grotesquely plump shape which rounds off to an unfittingly tiny peak. A peak that the DeLonghi designers decided to top off with something that looks like a woollen bobble hat ham-fistedly fitted onto a Teletubby. It looks ridiculous.

Still, if it's the subtly zany, retro-futuristic look you're going for, knock yourself out. In spite of its appearance, the Brillante is a technically highly capable, and very efficient, model of kettle. If it's pure stats you're going on and have no qualms about style or appearance then I would recommend it. Just, er, best to keep the guests in the lounge.

Welcome to The Kettle Review!

Welcome readers, to my new blog The Kettle Review, a unique new publication which will focus on reviewing an immense and diverse variety of kettles, from the basic to the deluxe, the plain standard to the plain weird, and highlighting potential value for the money along the way, with the aim of helping you, the consumer, to find the ideal kettle for your home.

I hope this blog will prove to be suitably informative, as well as occasionally entertaining and easy to follow. Any comments and suggestions about my coverage are more than appreciated, feel free to drop me a few words of wisdom if you so desire!

The first review is underway, and should be up shortly. Thank you for stopping by, I hope you'll continue to read for the foreseeable future.