The Beef

I am a meat lover. 
Pretty much always have been. 
I especially love meat cooked on a stick.  (Brazilian BBQ anyone??)

{image of Brazillian BBQ by Klaus}

When my husband & I got married, one of our favorite wedding gifts was the Showtime Rotisserie from my aunt & uncle.  (You know, the "set it and forget it" one??)  We use it all the time.

It makes these:

{image from here}
My dad's side of the family has a thing for meat...  maybe one of the reasons I do.  In the cooler months (and during lots of the warmers) we like to have a "beef" on Sundays.
(one of our favorite sayings...  said most of the time in all seriousnes ;)
Sunday's hot beef leftovers become Mondays sandwiches.  (If there are any leftovers.)
...A tradition my Nanoo (Grandfather) always followed.  He's the one in the middle of his brothers & sisters in the photo above.  We all miss him and I often think of him most when I'm eating certain things.
The Maestranzi's are kind of a loud, energetic type of family...  Eating is one of our favorite things to do and everything is centered around it.
{some of us}
My cousin-in-law, Brian, (I think that's his right arm & half an eye at the edge of the pic) has said he's writing a book called The Beef, with a chapter for each Maestranzi.  He makes fun of how often "the beef" comes up in normal conversation.  "It's always about the beef with you people!!!!!"  
(But I think he secretly likes it.)
My favorite beefs were my dad's cooked in the open Faberware set.  He used to pour salt & pepper & spices on it and say "abracadabra!" and tell my that's why it was so good.  
{My dad in the Faberware days}
And me:
I now always say "abracadabra!!!"  when we do our own beefs in the Showtime rotisserie. 
I'm lucky that my husband also has a thing for the beef & enjoys getting nice cuts at the butcher and cooking them.  (I'm more the eating-type.)  The best thing about our rotisserie is that you can "set it and forget it."  It's prefect for our boy-filled life because we can just pop it in & come back an hour or 2 later with amazing yumminess waiting for us.
So, it's becase of "the beef" that I began searching for an range oven that had a rotisserie function for our new kitchen...   (You know those internet searches when you're just begging to find that thing you want and all along you're wondering why in the world no one makes it yet???)
I already had a round-up of attractive yet stll fairly budget friendly 36" ranges I was considering...  I wanted something clean & functional-looking for our house.  I especially like ranges that don't have any sort of rounded backsplash with buttons above the burners and I wanted square straight lines.  Here are some of my more budget-friendly finds:  (And "budget-friendly" is a relative term here because "professional" type ranges are more than the typical range.)
{Ikea's Praktful Pro for $2000...  made by Whirlpool}

{smeg (an Australian company): in the mid $2000s.. so pretty}
(I read somewhere online that it has the same "guts" as the Ikea range but that the knobs are metal vs. plastic.  I think it's +/- $1000 more... It's a beauty!)
I settled on the Smeg because of its look, price and reviews.  (Although, have you ever read through internet appliance reviews?? It's all "Best purchase ever!!" followed by "Buyer Bewares"...  really always leave me wondering if I'm buying the coolest thing ever invented or a P.O.S.)
Anyway, I wasn't happy with spending this much on an oven (the smeg) when this guy (below) was going to be sitting on my counter every Sunday, cooking its little heart out while the new range just chilled, empty:
..So I kept searching...
I had of course found a few... Thermador makes a wall oven & a few other high-end brands make them too...  (GORGEOUSNESS!!) But I don't have room for a range (or an unlimited budget) & wall ovens so I  really wanted a rotisserie inside my range. I came across a list of the "top ten" rotisserie ranges...   some weren't even rotisseries (because you know how internet searches are) and most weren't so pretty... BUT!!!!  There was a SMEG on there that was beautiful!!  eeeeeeeeeek  Was it fate????
I started googling furiously and found out that Smeg did once make a range with a rotisserie.  Every time I followed a link to the exact model on online appliance stores, it came up as "discontinued."  (It looks like the lucky Australians still have the rotisserie option but that the US ones are gone.)  I called local places with no luck.  I finally decided before settling on a range without a rotisserie that I would call the internet appliance stores and give it one last go.  On the FIRST phonecall, I gave them the model number off the discontinued Smeg to the salesperson so he could see if he had anything like it and I could NOT believe it when after a pause for magic stock-checking I heard: 
"We actually have 1 of those left."
I almost screamed, but instead I calmy said, "The A1XU6 Smeg Opera 36: Duel Fuel Range???"
"Yes m'am."
"I'm so excited!!!" I yelled into the receiver. 
The guy said nothing.
But that's okay.
I was getting THE BEEF!!!
{The Smeg Opera...  Not exactly as pretty as the other smeg, but good enough in my book and it's what's inside that counts, right???  Especially if it's rotisserie skewers!!!}
This piece of wondefulness is in my garage now. 
I can't WAIT to set it and forget it.

ps-  To any appliance companies out there listening...  bring on the rotisseries!!!
**update** thanks so much to  Heidi who let me know that Smeg is actually an Italian company, GO FIGURE!!  (I was just perusing the rotisserie functions available in Australia!! hahaha oh this lovely world of internet shopping!! ;)

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Vel Criste said...

We are just a chicken and beef kind of familyl too Lauren. That rotisserie beef you had there looks yum, would love the recipe if you have one (your chicken noodle and lemon soup is one of our faves). :-) as for the range, I am thankful your doing your kitchen first so I can just browe over your finds before deciding on mine - hehehe, Thanks for the lowdown, I was leaning more on the Ikea one but you had me at SMEG. Good luck!

Becky Cowen said...

yay! don't you just love when things work out in your favor?!? you were meant to have that range! :)

Jennifer said...

you are hilarious. internet stalking does pay off though, huh?!

Christina Marie Interiors said...

So glad you are getting "the beef"! My family is Italian too.... I totally get it. LOVE the Smeg oven!

Nancy said...

This is an adorable post and backstory on your beefy family. I just found out Im allergic to beef since I was bitten this summer by the Lone Star Tick, so beware of a tick with a dot on its back.. Anyway, I LOVE the smug and it truly was fate that brought you two together. Can't wait to hear how it performs. Have a great day.

pve design said...

So glad you outed yourself today - My husband and I are also huge devotees of beef and roasted chicken....and we love our Bertazzoni oven!
We also love our grill....
Enjoy your oven.

Amber said...

You are so cute! I love your blog :)


ArchitectDesign™ said...

OMG -thats so awesome. LOVED your story -i get so excited about stuff like that too. Can't wait to see it all be put together!!

mia james said...

Me too! I'm also a meat lover. I love eating all kinds of meat. May it be beef, chicken, pork and a lot more.
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Lynda @ Happenstance Home said...

Loving your choice. Great information, and when you were so excited on the phone and then heard silence - I had a moment like that today too! It's funny.

Megan said...

So glad they had one left and waiting for YOU!!! I'm enjoying seeing all the progress on your new home, I can't wait to see how everything turns out after you work your magic!

Kerry Steele- Design du Monde said...

My husband is a butcher so we eat a lot of beef too. I thought I was the only person who got THAT excited about appliances. LOL!

Leah Moss said...

funniest post ever. you are so hilarious Lauren. I can totally picture the exchange with the appliance guy :) I'm sooooo happy you got your dream range girl!

mom23 said...

LOL! Good times ;) Congrats on the SMEG!!

Amanda said...

Lauren, you are adorable. That was a GREAT post! I am just as excited for you and your range. You are going to make and enjoy lots of wonderful meals for your family with that thing. Congrats on your new home and all of your new projects. Can't wait to see it all unfold!

Jamie Evelyn said...

Lauren I love reading your blog, you are so funny! TGIF!

Anna said...

Hi Lauren: I am so glad you found the right oven. Congratulations.

Thank you so much for taking the time to comment on my blog. I am honored and grateful.

Have a wonderful day!


Anonymous said...

i hope you love your range. one of my regrets when we built was putting in a wall oven and getting a wolf cooktop. i love my cooktop, but the appliance place had a 36" dual fuel aga that i was drooling over, but there weren't any reviews on the internet anywhere because it was too new. so i got spooked. now, i kick myself. enjoy every bit of that smeg ... it's gorgeous!

Jennifer, Decorum said...

You won't be sorry with your SMEG, Lauren. We Aussies love our meat. I remember families roasting chooks (that's chickens to you non-Aussies) on the rotisserie every week when I was a kid. Nothing like the flavour of rotisserie meat. I can understand your excitement too as I am renovating my own home and purchased my new induction cooktop yesterday. The excitement is overwhelming! Loving watching your renos come together.

Jennifer xx

Heidi said...

We had a rotisserie function in the oven that came with our house - unfortunately the oven was so old it was broken. I can understand how difficult it was to find one with that function. One thing though, Smeg is most definitely Italian, not Australian. So that figures that they do "the Beef" rotisserie option!

Gobi Jass said...

A comment for the blog owner, you have beautiful themes and I appreciate you the ease with which you express yourself. Congratulations!

Loretta Fontaine (APPLESandRUBIES) said...

Lauren- What a beautiful range (so clean cut!)

..and what a beautiful photo of you as a child. Your smile just glows!


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Rosa and Pearl said...

Hi Lauren
Weve bought a Smeg with a rotisserie as well (in black)!
I cant wait until our house it finished and we get to move that baby in!

So happy for you that you found one too.

(a happy little Aussie Smeg owner)

Natalie said...

i know you are seriously swamped with all that is life but i wanted to pick your brain on your smeg purchase, now that youve used it. we are about to embark on a kitchen reno and i, too, am both an interior designer and seriously picky when it comes to the look of my "stuff."...i.e. i like the super expensive ranges i spec for my clients but cant afford! ha! BUT i LOVE the look and price of the 36" smeg and did some research...only concerns are that it doesnt have a timer on it? or a self clean? wanted to hear your opinions on that but also generally how your use of it has been so far. im switching from a black glass cooktop so anything will be a step in the right direction... :)