Renowned chef Massimo Mele shares his tips for designing the perfect kitchen
We at Complete Home believe the kitchen is among the most sacred of spaces within one’s home. A contemporary kitchen is so much more than just a room dedicated to meal preparation, it’s the hub of the home; a welcoming space in which family and friends can gather for meals and conversation. Given the space’s importance to the ambiance of the home, who better to speak to about attaining kitchen perfection than a renowned chef!
We had the opportunity spend some time with Massimo Mele recently when he hosted the Electrolux Chefs’ Secrets masterclasses at the Taste of Sydney festival, where he let us all in on a few of his culinary secrets. We also asked him about his personal kitchen preferences, and here’s what he had to say:
CH: Describe your kitchen style and layout.
MM: We are fortunate to have a lot of space that allows for an open plan kitchen. The open floor plan means we have enough room for a 3m island bench and a generous sized pantry. A pantry can never be too small – it’s the perfect place to hide all the clutter. We also have a second sink in the pantry that makes washing up easy after a big dinner party!
CH: Why did you design your kitchen in this way? Has your experience as a chef helped shape your kitchen design preferences?
MM: Our island bench has our Electrolux 6 zone maxisense InfinitePro induction cooktop in the centre. I had to convince my partner to have the cooktop on the island but she loves it now. I like to face guests when I’m cooking as opposed to have my back to them.
We always graze on the island bench; it is nice to share what I am cooking when we have family and friends over.
We have the best fridges — Electrolux stainless steel bottom mount fridges — everyone comments on them. We chose these because I am always cooking with my commercial gear and everything is big. You can never have enough room in your fridge, they also look beautiful and very sleek.
CH: Do you have any tips on how to choose the best appliances for a kitchen?
MM: Practicality is key. I like things to look good but so often people choose great looking appliances that aren’t very practical. The five kitchen gadgets that everyone should have in their toolkit are:
- A good blender
- A pasta making machine
- Coffee machine
- Waffle maker
CH: Would you recommend installing a gas or induction cooktop? What’s the benefit of using one over the other?
MM: I would recommend installing an induction cooktop over gas. After renovating my second home in Hobart, we decided to go with induction. We decided to put the induction cooktop in our island bench so that when we have guests around, I’m able to face the party and cook while we have a glass of wine. It’s nice not to have my back to people so this makes the cooking part of the experience.
CH: What one appliance you think every kitchen should have?
MM: My Electrolux 6 zone maxisense InfinitePro induction cooktop – it’s the way to go! I never thought I would be converted from gas but cooking has evolved so much now.
Massimo Mele, Electrolux ambassador and chef, was born in Tasmania and raised in Naples, Italy, where his culinary journey began. In 2004, Massimo won the Electrolux Appetite for Excellence People’s Choice Award. Massimo now divides his time between Hobart and Sydney where he operates a boutique catering company (Catering by Massimo) and has a young family. Massimo Mele is the host of Electrolux Chefs’ Secrets at Taste Festivals in Australia.