Laptop, meet the cookbook. We saw the Kitchen Sync design concept several weeks ago, and we were surprised and happy to meet its designer, Noah Balmer, at the Housewares Show. Balmer received an International Housewares Association design award for the Kitchen Sync, which we hope goes into production soon.
The concept for the Kitchen Sync is quite simple, and brilliant. It's a new generation of cookbook for your kitchen - the perfect melding of the recipes you can find online and the old-fashioned cookbooks that sit on your kitchen shelves. Read on to see how it works - lots more photos below...
Here's the second French-inspired color we'll remember from this year's Home and Housewares show: deep purple. We weren't immediately drawn to this color that Emile Henry, from the Burgundy town of Marcigny, calls "figue." The color seemed Barney-esque or a little too much like a Starbucks easy chair, at first.
But as we go over our notes and photos from the show, we're reconsidering our take on the dark purples we saw. The rich Mediterranean color could work in both modern and more old-world settings and would be a strong backdrop for many different foods, from dark brown braises to the greens of steamed vegetables. It would coordinate well with Staub's new titanium color too.
What do you think of this new color from Emile Henry?
Cool Hunting recently ran a High Tech Toaster Challenge, looking at four new high-end toaster models. The top winner was this Breville Smart Toaster, with its countdown LED panel, slow bread submerge, and a button labeled "A Bit More" to get your bread just to that perfect toasty state. It's not on the market yet, but we checked it out at the Housewares Show!
You hear us chuckling over the "Lift and Look" function - it pops your bread up so you can take a look and puts it back down again. More toaster details below...
As we download photos and edit video of our coverage of the International Home and Housewares Show 2008, we are reflecting on our experience there. We (Chris and I) walked miles of expo floor, scouting thousands of products for home and kitchen. The show is a monument to capitalism and invention, and frankly, I was cynical about this vast consumerist machine before I even got there. The experience, however, was revealing in a way I did not expect.
Organic and sustainable ingredients have been a focus in our kitchens for years. Now, at this year's Home and Housewares Show here in Chicago, we're seeing manufacturers launching lines of eco-friendly kitchen tools.
These new biodegradable kitchen organizers from Casabella's Clean look elegant and will be truly useful. The line, including a dish drainer, a cutlery holder and a soap dish made from bioplastics, a biodegradable product made from corn starch.
The International Home and Housewares Show has been a great opportunity to meet inventors and innovators in person. We were excited to meet the team behind a strange yet fascinating product we featured during Coffee Week. The Handpresso is a French invention that lets you have espresso anywhere - whether you're camping out in the mountains, a hotel room or just the office. Check out this one-minute impromptu video of their demonstration, and click through to see more of the gadget and to read our impressions of the espresso itself...
The Home and Housewares Show here in Chicago is its own kind of runway. Some colors are in, like orange and vanilla. Others colors, including red and lime green, are showing up less than they did last year.
Our favorite color from the show is this limited edition titanium cocotte oven from Staub. This stunner grabbed our attention from a couple rows away. Can you picture Madonna braising away in a pot like this? ...
I'm back from sunny San Diego with slightly pinker cheeks, jeans that are just a bit more snug, and a bag full of business cards and media kits. Hello, trade show!
I went to the Fancy Food Show (sponsored, since 1955, by the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade) to speak about blogging and new food media with Beth Kanter and Nina Simonds. After that was over, I spent the next 36 hours pounding the 477,00 square foot floor of the San Diego Convention Center: more than 1,000 exhibitors showing more than, my official show directory tells me, 80,000 food products.
Let me begin by saying I did not eat 80,000 things.
We're easily distracted at the Home & Housewares Show. With a celebrity chef here, a funnel cake machine for home cooks over there, every booth woos us.
The Chicago show is a launching pad for new colors, new trends, and over the top ideas (any takers for an LED light that makes the water flowing from the kitchen tap glow, anyone?).
On Day 2 we tried to focus on practical products that solve real kitchen problems. We hunted for truly useful products we could put right to work in our kitchens. Here's three of our favorite finds . . .