Different Commercial Ranges - Comments?

Joined Nov 9, 2009
I never realized there are so many makers of commercial ranges and cooktops, and most of them names unfamiliar to me (just a home cook). I'm referring to actual commercial ranges, not "pro-style" residential ranges.

Garland, Vulcan, Wolf, US Range, Montague, Imperial, American, Jade, Southbend, Royal, and I've probably missed some.

I am curious, can you guys say a little about the reputations of these brands, their strong/weak points, and your preferences and experiences with them? What do professional cooks like and dislike in the ranges that they use in their work?

Joined Oct 10, 2005
All are good.

That being said each mnfctr makes different QUALITIES of their lines.

The most popular is the "standard" range, as it sells the best because it is the cheapest. Most restaurnats use this quality and it is pretty darn good.

The better quality is the "HOTEL" type line. Made with much stronger chassis, heavier guage stainless, better cast grates, better hardware, better everything. The more expensive chain restaurants and the good quality hotels spec. this type of equipment. It is about 40% more expensive, but much, much sturdier and longer lasting.

Garland is a monster and owns a lot of the smaller equipment companies. Google them and find out which ones.....
Joined Nov 9, 2009
Are there some brands that you're pleased to see when you walk into a kitchen for the first time, and some you don't react to? Or that you've thought you'd get, if you ever spec'd out a new restaurant kitchen? Or do professionals consider these brands pretty much interchangeable, just as soon order a Royal as a Jade as a Imperial as a Garland etc etc?
Joined May 29, 2006
Southbend or Vulcan are the ones I have found most rreliable.(very little repairs required) The worst was Wolf broilers and ranges.
Joined Oct 16, 2009
My experiences were completely different. We had a wolf broiler that worked for 25 years non-stop no repairs "ever" and their ranges were the most trouble free that I have ever owned. But that was when wolf was an independent company.

Currently they are owned by ITW which also owns Vulcan and they now share many of the same parts and I would expect that they also share many of the same issues good or bad.
Joined Feb 27, 2008
Garland got bought up by Manitowoc a year or so ago. (Yeah, the ice machine (and crane...) people.) But you're right: there are a lot fewer makers of ranges than there are brands they're sold under.
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