A good cook requires more than mediocre equipment. They require a space that has every square metre kitted out with ergonomic tech (efficient and optimised for comfort or ease of use) that's pleasing on the eye, too. Because let's face it, being really, really, really ridiculously good looking will only get you so far when it comes to mastering culinary creations. What you actually need is hard-working kit that consistently delivers for midweek suppers and weekend dinner parties alike.
Design, innovation, cutting-edge tech and ergonomics are what really help you make the most out of your kitchen — and consistently impress guests. We've rounded up 12 buys that balance both form and function to change the way you cook, eat and entertain.
Brought to you by Liebherr
Liebherr ECBN 5066 integrated bottom mount fridge: Minimalist design that doesn't skimp on space or features is Liebherr's trademark. Their flagship integrated fridge was made for entertaining thanks to a generous 387L capacity, adjustable shelving and the latest food preserving technology. The ergonomic bottom-mounted design features two pull out and fill freezer compartments, making it much easier to see what's inside.
Barazza Feel built-in coffee machine: Engineered in northern Italy, Barazza's seriously sleek stainless steel and glass design ensures the perfect piccolo every time. Don't be fooled by the compact dimensions (450mm x 590mm). This serious piece of kit might be small enough to fit even a studio kitchen but it also holds 2.5L of water, offers three strength options and self-cleans.
Williams Sonoma professional copper 10-piece cookware set: Midweek entertaining is made so much easier with a set of professional pans. Each is designed with optimum heat conduction, precision and temperature control in mind so you can spend more time at the table than the stove.
Kakudo butter case: Take the trend for functional design to the table with this Japanese-designed butter case, a collaboration between Oji Masanori and the workshops of Takahashi Kougei. Kakudo means 'angle' and the precision on this piece means the lid sits naturally flush to the base making for a stunning breakfast centrepiece.
Rig Tig chopping boards: Smart design meets functionality here, too. Rig Tig's set of three chopping boards is housed in a convenient holder which doubles as a container for vegetable peel and off-cuts while prepping. Unlike wooden boards, they're dishwasher safe too.
Shun classic chef's knife: No-one makes knives like the Japanese, that's why they're the favoured tool of top chefs. The 20cm Shun classic is manufactured from Japanese steel meaning it's easy to put an edge on and stays remarkably sharp. Chopping is suddenly less of a chore.
Riedel performance tasting set: Give fine wine the respect it deserves with variety-specific glasses. Each is machine-made to showcase and support one of four styles: Cabernet, Pinot Noir, Riesling and Chardonnay. This collection is also the first to feature light optic impact, pleasing the eye and increasing the bowl's inner surface area.
Aandersson Alwin mug: Philadelphia-based ceramicist Ian Anderson spent years perfecting the Alwin with non-traditional production methods and extra handwork. The result is an aesthetically pleasing and ergonomically satisfying cup that sits comfortably in the hand.
Georg Jensen Henning Coppel cutlery set: With a timeless pared-back aesthetic, Georg Jensen's cutlery set was an instant classic when it launched in 1958 thanks to the functional yet elegant design. Now it's been brought up to date in a black PVD coating, without losing any of that original attraction.
West Elm marble and copper handled cheese board: The copper handles on this understated marble cheeseboard allow for easy transportation from the kitchen to the table.
Opus Seville stool: Opus' Seville combines sleek design with comfort thanks to an ergonomic, supportive seat. Perfect for high table dining or bar drinks.
Judge White marble pestle and mortar: Take the arm work out of grinding spices or crushing garlic with a little help from Judge White's pestle and mortar. The compact design means zero waste and less counter space.