Cookware 4

KitchenAid vs. Kenwood Chef in Europe (France)

carlux | May 8, 2008 09:00 AM

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I've read a number of posts about Kitchenaid, mostly from people in the US. Not many about Kenwood Chef. I live in the southwest of France, where buying opportunities are limited, and service even more so.

FYI, Kitchenaid Artisan, which in the US seems to be 200-300 USD here retails for 550 Euros, often on sale for 450 to 500, but can be had from various Internet sites for 375 Euros, more or less. (The Professional model is virtually unavailable here I found one site selling it at 800 or 900 euros, so that's really out of the question. Cuisinart also not avaiable.)

I ordered a red Artisan from Amazon, loved it when it arrived, but when I tried to make bread, using only 3 cups of flour, well within the limit, the head came unlocked and bucked up. Also the bowl got stuck in the base, and I had to oil the outside, plus put ice cubes in to contract the metal. (Apparently this does happen I see on other sites and I guess I could live with that.) Decided that I must have done something wrong, made another kind of bread and it was fine. But the third time, the same problem - it may be related to putting raisins in the bread, but I don't think the head should lift up in the middle of the mixing.

So I called Service, which is in Brussels, a LONG way from me, and the only service place they could recommend is 1 1/2 hours away. (If you think gas is expensive in the US you should try Europe. I really don't want to drive 1 1/2 hours twice for a mixer.)

Finally I discovered that Amazon would still take it back, put the whole thing back in the box and mailed it to them. I'm still waiting for the refund, but decided to do more research.

I had just about decided to go with the Kenwood Chef (probably KMC 510 or 560) which is still between 300 and 400 Euros, but they have a great reputation for quality and long life (I actually have a 35 year old one which still works, but is pretty battered, and needs to work through a very heavy large transformer, neither of which i really want on my counter. The reason I'm looking for a replacement)

Then I see that Kenwood has been bought by DeLonghi and lots of people say the quality has really suffered. And service is terrible.

So now I really don't know what to do next. I made another call to Kitchenaid in Brussels, who say I can send a defective machine to the service agent at their cost, and so feel a little better about them.

Has anyone else, particularly in Europe gone through this decision making process, and what was the result? If Kenwood, which model do you prefer, the Chef 560, at 4.6L bowl and 1000 W, or titanium 010, with same size bowl but more powerful motor at 1400 W

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