Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Kitchen Collection [28]

I could do a whole series on our refrigerator (watch out, I might). Everyone knows that in Europe, including France, refrigerators are much smaller than those we're used to in North America. For most, I think it's a function of space, energy, and the fact that city people eat out or buy fresh food daily. Large quantities of stored food are neither necessary nor desirable.

But the trend toward frigos américains is hard to resist, and now modern kitchens are being advertised with large side-by-side models that include water and ice in the door - something unheard of in France even ten years ago.

When we moved to the countryside, we knew that we wanted something larger than an under-the-counter half-sized fridge, and we had the space for a good-sized appliance. Our choices were limited because we wanted a frost-free freezer. This is also a new trend in France. There are a lot more options today for frost-free than there were even four years ago. We also wanted a bottom freezer, but we could find no models available with a frost-free freezer on the bottom.

The Chilled Room inside our refrigerator.

We ended up buying a Samsung (yes, they make refrigerators) with an upper freezer compartment that's frost-free. It's a tad smaller than a standard American refrigerator, but it's big enough for us. Inside the fridge section, it's pretty much what you'd expect, except for this funny compartment at the top called the "chilled room." I thought the whole fridge was a "chilled room." Go figure.

The little graphics on the door panel suggest that one should keep fish in there. We use it mostly for cheese and cold cuts.


  1. Yes, I too find our fridges much too small. Even on my own!

  2. When I lived in Asnières for 18 mos. in the mid-1970s, I didn't have a refrigerator at all. Not even a tiny one. I would put butter, milk, cheese and other products that needed refrigeration in a plastic bag on the ledge outside my kitchen window. That worked in Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. and Mar. Other months, I just didn't keep butter, milk, or cheese.

  3. I love the freezer on the bottom and have always wondered why that isn't the norm and why you have to pay a premium for them, if you can find them. It makes so much sense. You're in the freezer less often so need less access... and since heat rises, why not start out with what needs to be coldest on the bottom? I don't get it.

  4. We bought a full sized fridge in the beginning. I just could't see how one could live with one of those tiny things. I do agree with you that it's probably sufficient for the older French who used everything fresh. That's no doubt changing with the new generation.
    All of our appliances we've bought here have been great btw.


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