After their near-disappearance from the American market, we finally found our favorite toaster company — and the toaster of our dreams. The Dualit Vario Toaster ($240-$320) offers up either two or four openings for an equal number of perfectly toasted sliced bread goodness, set by your own movements of the mechanically-functional, handmade English handle. You know how they say "the best thing since sliced bread"? Well, this toaster is the thing that made sliced bread popular. Or maybe it was just the lack of cutting. Who really knows?
Despite the name, you don't need to be a cycling enthusiast to enjoy the output of the Rocket Giotto Rapha Espresso Machine (€1,700; roughly $2,400). This limited edition, all stainless steel machine is numbered one out of 200 on the boilerplate, and features a stainless steel steam wand, full-size commercial one and two cup filter handles with baskets, a thermal siphone system, a copper boiler with brass end plates, a three-liter water reservoir with low-level warning system, and a Sirai pressure stat for greater accuracy and longer life — which is important for a coffee maker that costs as much as a high-end HDTV.
Need an oven that will be ready at a moment's notice and still look great next to your grand piano and guitar? Then you need an AGA Total Control Cooker ($TBA). This electric cooker is controlled by a touch screen panel hidden behind one of the four front doors, and lets you operate the boiling plate, simmering plate, roasting oven, baking oven, and simmering oven independently, saving you money and energy, all while keeping its old world cred.
Every cook — excuse us, chef — knows the value in having a kickass faucet — and that perfectly describes the Blanco Master Gourmet Faucet ($925). Sporting a lovely modern design, it features a sleek arc tap and lever on one side, and a commercial pull-down all metal pressure sprayer on the other, as well as a solid brass body in either a satin nickel or chrome finish. If you're short on space, there's a smaller version that eliminates the tap.
Not all coffee drinkers prefer the amped-up taste of Starbucks and the like. The Hario Cold Water Coffee Dripper ($265) uses the cold-drip method — which involves slowly dripping cold water through finely ground beans — to create a full-flavored concentrate that can be used to make hot cups o' joe, iced beverages, or coffee-tinted epicurean delights, without the acidity and bitterness of traditionally-brewed coffee, and without using a single drop of electricity.