During the second half of 2019, we decided to go ahead with building work to renovate the downstairs of our house. The big change being that we planned to convert our integrated garage, knock through to the existing living room and move the kitchen from the back of our house into the newly converted garage.
As part of this renovation work, we obviously needed to plan and design a new kitchen for the old garage. This was all a new experience to us, which was arguably made more difficult as we had to imagine what our new kitchen would look like whilst stood in a space more suited for a car than a set of frying pans!
We spend a lot of time cooking, so it was important to ensure that every aspect of the kitchen was how we wanted it. As we were knocking out a large section of the wall to create an open plan kitchen / diner / living room, we saw the kitchen as the hub of our new downstairs, so it had to be planned very carefully to make the most of the space available and to reflect how we live as a family.
When thinking about our dream kitchen, we wanted something modern, sleek, simplistic, functional and with a bit of a wow factor. High up on our wish list was a large, freestanding range cooker, so when planning and designing the layout, we always envisaged a cooking juggernaut as central to our plans.
Once we’d figured out dimensions and chosen our units, it was time to find the right range cooker for us. We wanted it to be 100cm in length, it had to be black to fit the colour scheme, it needed to be dual fuel (electric oven and gas hobs), and we wanted space and flexibility when it came to cooking, both in terms of hobs and ovens. Budget-wise, we were looking around £1,000.
After looking at the large range of ranges (pun intended!) we found ourselves drawn to Leisure, in particular the Leisure Cuisinemaster (CS100F520). Boasting three electric ovens with multiple cooking functions including slow, conventional and fan, a dedicated electric grill, five burner gas hobs and a griddle plate, it sounded ideal for our needs.
I floated the idea of a review to Leisure and was thrilled to find that they were happy for me to review the Cuisinemaster. So, after a few months of having the new kitchen and range cooker in place, below you’ll find my review of the Leisure Cuisinemaster.
The product is described as:
Prepare lots of your favourite meals and try out new recipes with this superb dual fuel range cooker from Leisure. This Cuisinemaster range cooker’s striking, contemporary design challenges the thinking that range cookers are reserved for old country homes. Three separate ovens, a slow cooking setting, and a dedicated grill give you the flexibility to cook multiple dishes at once. And, the five-burner gas hob also includes a wok burner and griddling area, so you’ll be able to stir-fry your spicy rice noodles while your salmon chargrills on the griddle.
After putting in the Cuisinemaster range cooker order via the PR company, I received a text message from Product Care to arrange delivery. When I clicked through from the text message, it took me to a simple online portal where I could choose and book my delivery date and time.
A few days later, the Leisure Cuisinemaster arrived via ArrowXL and their two-person delivery service. The cooker was really well packaged and was safely brought into our house ready for our builder to install once the relevant pipes and kitchen units were in place.
According to our builder, installation was relatively simple and required both knowledge of gas and electrics. He fitted a cooker hose to the back of the range, then connected this to a bayonet fitting on the newly installed gas pipe. The product also needed to be hardwired to a 32 Amp fuse which was housed in an adjacent cupboard. Once done, it could be connected to the wall via the safety chain to stop any accidental tipping.
Thankfully, all of our planning and designing for the kitchen had been spot on as the Leisure Cuisinemaster fitted perfectly into its designated space. With dimensions of W100cm x H90cm x D60cm, there’s no getting away from the fact that it is a big appliance. However, we were really keen to have a large cooker as a statement piece for the new kitchen and were excited to see how it’d look once everything was finished.
Fast forward a week or so when the electrics were finished, the worktops were installed, the tiles were fitted and the decorating was completed, and we finally got to see the finished kitchen with the Leisure Cuisinemaster as the pièce de résistance. ‘Thrilled’ was an understatement. It had felt like a long few months but we were so chuffed with the new kitchen and the extra space created by converting the garage.
We’d gone for a modern, sleek and minimerlistic look for the kitchen and felt that the Cuisinemaster fitted this perfectly with its contemporary design and striking features. Due to its black gloss appearance (stainless steel also available), it fitted perfectly with our white, grey and black colour scheme and provided the wow factor that we were hoping for when thinking about designing our perfect kitchen.
Taking a closer look at the Leisure Cuisinemaster, you’ll find four doors at the front which house three electric ovens and an electric grill. Each door features a glass viewing window and a sturdy, stainless steel handle which contrasts nicely against the black appliance. The top two doors open downwards, whilst the bottom two swing near on 180 degrees outwards.
On top of the Cuisinemaster, there are five gas burner hobs of varying sizes, including a large, central burner suited for cooking with a wok. There’s also an included griddle plate which can be removed and sits upon an electric induction hob.
Above the doors, you’ll find ten black and silver dials which control each element of the Leisure Cuisinemaster. The dials for the ovens simply turn to the desired temperature, whereas the dials for the hobs need to be pressed in, held and then turned to ignite the gas. Around the dials, you’ll see the temperature settings and a handy illustration to indicate what part of the cooker the dial controls.
Central of the range, there is an LED panel and four silver buttons. These allow you to do basic operations such as set the time (which must be done before the ovens work), change the LED display brightness, set the cooking time, set an alarm, change the alarm tone and activate the keylock.
This keylock function is a little confusing though because all it does is lock the four buttons. As we have two young kids, I kind of hoped that it would provide additional safety features, such as stop the oven being turned on or stop gas coming out if the dial is turned.
We’ve been using the Cuisinemaster for a couple of months now and are really pleased with everything about it. It’s great having the hobs and ovens in one place rather than split across the kitchen, it provides so much space to cook regardless of what we’re making, it works as a handy place to store baking trays when not being used, it cleans really easily and it is so pretty to look at! Here’s a bit more detail about the product and how we’ve been using it:
Ovens And Grill
The entire range cooker gives you a large 160 litre capacity, which is split across three electric ovens to give you plenty of space for cooking family meals. This comprises a 63L main fan oven (bottom left), a 65L secondary conventional oven (bottom right) and a 33L third conventional oven (top right). There’s also a 33L electric grill (top left).
The main fan oven (bottom left) is where we tend to do the majority of our cooking. As it’s a fan cooker, the fan and circular element ensure heat is distributed evenly throughout the oven for quick even cooking. The oven temperature ranges from 80-240ºC, it has five shelf positions and includes two shelves. It also has a clever telescopic runner, which allows you to pop on a shelf or baking tray and then slide this out to check on cooking progress.
The secondary oven (bottom right) has a slightly larger capacity than the fan oven (65L vs 63L) and doesn’t have the telescopic runners, but everything else is the same in terms of temperature ranges, shelves and shelf positions. The big difference is that this is a convectional oven, so it uses the two heating elements to heat the air and cook the food.
The final oven (top right) is also a convectional oven, but of a much smaller capacity of 33L. The maximum temperature stays at 240ºC, however this oven has a lower starting temperature of 50ºC which makes it ideal for slow cooking. As it’s smaller, it has one shelf which can be placed on two shelf positions.
The fan oven is our go-to one, mainly because we’ve used fan ovens for years and are used to the way they cook our food. The smaller convectional oven also gets a fair bit of use, and has actually replaced our standalone slow cooker when it comes to cooking stews or large joints of meat like gammon or pork shoulder. The large convectional oven is mainly used as an overflow, and as such, doesn’t see that much action.
In addition to these three ovens, there’s also a separate 33L electric grill (top left) which uses a heating element at the top to cook for food. We find this handy for meat and fish, as well as good ol’ fashioned toasties and cheese on toast. It is an open door grill, has two shelf positions and comes with a grill pan with detachable handle.
We’ve found that having these three ovens and the grill gives us more than enough space and flexibility when it comes to cooking our food. Not only do we have plenty of shelves and actual capacity, but it also means we can cook different parts of our meal at different times, settings and temperatures. We were unable to do this previously and have found it makes a big difference.
Nothing demonstrates this more than over the Christmas period. Firstly, there was the main event itself – Christmas dinner. With baking trays and dishes aplenty, being able to spread out over three ovens was a joy. The fan oven was used for our chicken, roast potatoes, parsnips and carrots, whilst the other two ovens were used for stuffing, Yorkshire puds and pigs in blankets.
A few days after Christmas, the Missus’ family came over and we plumped for a ‘lazy’ tea of pizza and chips. Cooking for eight people meant that we had five pizzas and oven chips. Remarkably, with three ovens on, everything was cooked and plated at the same time – an impossibility with our old, ‘normal-sized’ oven.
As well as the sturdy handle and viewing window, each compartment also has an interior light which comes on when the oven is turned on. The two larger ovens also have cook clean catalytic liners which absorb and oxidise the fat, dirt and grime from cooking to make it easier to wipe down the oven. Talking about cleaning, all four compartments also have removable glass in the doors to make deep cleaning easier if required.
Something we’ve had to adapt to is that the ovens are now lower to the floor when compared to our old integrated oven which was at eye-level. As we have two young kids, this is something we really need to be mindful of when the oven is on because (a) the doors can be opened, (b) the glass gets hot, and (c) the dials can be turned. To combat this, we try to make the kitchen a ‘no entry zone’ for the kids when the oven is on.
The only other slight ‘negative’ to note is the noise. It’s not the loudest thing ever, but it can be a little noisy when the fan kicks in when the grill or oven have been turned on for a little while. This doesn’t bother me personally – I’m used to noise with two kids and a dog (!) – but it’s worthwhile mentioning because it did surprise me at the start.
Hobs And Griddle
On top of the Leisure Cuisinemaster, you’ll find a 5-burner gas hob which takes up about two thirds of the space. These five burners vary in size from small (back left) to medium (back right and front right) to large (front left) to extra large (middle), and give plenty of flexibility and space for saucepans and frying pans. The middle cooker ring is actually a dedicated wok burner, so is perfectly sized to provide a high temperature to quickly prepare a stir fry.
From a safety perspective, each cooker ring has a built-in flame supervision device which cuts off the gas supply if the flame extinguishes during cooking to prevent accidental re-ignition. The hob area also has three removable cast iron pan supports that sit over the hobs. These provide a stable base for your pans, and as they’re surprisingly light for something so robust, are easy to remove and clean should there be any spills.
The remaining third of the top of the hob is reserved for the included cast iron griddle plate which sits on top of an induction ring. This allows you to prepare barbecue-style and chargrilled food by cooking directly on the griddle plate rather than in a pan. You simply turn the appropriate dial to turn on the induction ring, which then heats the griddle plate to a high temperature.
We’ve found this to be a great additional feature and something we’ve used to cook steak, burgers, chicken and bacon, as well as warm things like naan bread and tortilla wraps. Once used, the griddle plate can be removed and washed, however we’ve found that it is a little tricky to get fully clean because of all of the grooves.
Range cookers aren’t cheap and the Leisure Cuisinemaster (CS100F520) is no exception. It costs around £1,000 and can be bought from numerous places like Currys, AO and Amazon. Despite the hefty price tag, it’s important to consider what you get – namely, three ovens, a grill, five hobs and a griddle plate. If these were bought individually, the price would soon escalate up to that amount.
In addition, I think the price is pretty reasonable when compared to other range cookers on the market. It’s more expensive than some of the budget options, but it’s also significantly cheaper than many others, which on the face of it, offer less features and functionality than the Cuisinemaster. All in all, I feel it’s pretty good value for money.
The Leisure Cuisinemaster (CS100F520) dual fuel range cooker has been a brilliant addition to our new kitchen and we’re so pleased with our choice. Aesthetically speaking, the black gloss and stainless steel look great against the grey cupboards, white worktops and tiles, whilst helping to tie in some of the other black parts in the kitchen. We hoped that it would provide a statement piece in the kitchen and feel that it certainly delivers on that.
Looks aside, we’ve been really impressed with the variety and flexibility that the range provides when it comes to cooking. Three ovens give plenty of space, even when preparing large, family meals such as a Sunday roast or Christmas dinner. In addition, the slow cooker setting on the small oven is a brilliant bonus and something we use for stews and slow-cooked meats.
On the top, five gas burner hobs provide more than enough space for frying pans and saucepans. We haven’t used it loads so far, but the large, central wok burner is a nice addition and means stir fries can be prepared at high temperatures. In addition, having a griddle plate is another bonus and something that I didn’t realise I needed until I started using it!
Everything feels sturdy, well built and is easy to clean – I can see it lasting for many years and continuing to look in great condition. In terms of improvements, the fan can sometimes be a little noisy and it’d be good to have some kind of child-lock feature to prevent it being turned on by wandering hands.
All in all, we’ve really happy with it and look forward to preparing many more meals. If you’re looking for a range cooker, then Leisure, and the Leisure Cuisinemaster in particular, should definitely be taken into consideration. Bon appetit!
The DADventurer Star Rating
4.5 out of 5 Stars
Disclosure: The Cuisinemaster (CS100F520) Dual Fuel Cooker was sent to me by Leisure with the purpose of writing an honest review in exchange for the product.
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