OK, I'm probably going to be lambasted for this, but I'm going to ask the question anyway. I have a Jenn Air dual fuel range (30") with the downdraft ventilation system. I hardly ever use the ventilation fan--maybe because my kitchen has 15' ceilings and a wall of windows to the left of the range? I cook and entertain A LOT, and do consider myself a pretty serious cook. My Jenn Air died last night (it's 16 years old), and I was never completely happy with it--the left side burners left a lot to be desired, and the door never really closed properly, even after I replaced it with a new one (I mean, it closed all the way, but made this ka-chunk sound that was slowly driving me insane).
I think I want a Wolf dual fuel (I do do some baking), but as it's not in an island cooktop situation, I can't go with the downdraft system again (not enough space), and am hesitant to go down the road of installing a ventilation hood (there are no cabinets directly above the range--the previous owners left it open, which I kind of like). Since I have such tall ceilings, and there is a soffet (sp?) about 5 feet above the oven and an architectural window (meaning, it doesn't open even if I could reach it) above that, I'm thinking a hood would have to be custom (read: expensive).
Do I really HAVE to have a ventilation hood?? My kitchen is pretty large, with two-story ceilings and lots of windows (plus, a ceiling fan). My only downdraft option (that I know of) is another Jenn Air, which I'm really not thrilled about. Am I kidding myself that I don't use the ventilation system (other than for the indoor grill on the Jenn Air--which I liked in theory, but cooked very unevenly in practice and was a b*tch to clean)?
Also, expecting 30 for dinner on Christmas Day, so time is of the essence--yikes!