Not too long ago, fellow 3rings writer Alicita Rodriguez wrote a dreamy missive about Elica kitchen hoods. She was fantasizing about a small, luminous model that resembled a chandelier more than an exhaust device. I'm quite a bit more practical—utilitarian even—so I like kitchen hoods to look like the powerful extraction machines they are (or should be). My penchant for function does not, however, mean that I will forget aesthetics altogether. What I'm looking for is a well-designed kitchen hood that works well without being too ornamental.
H1 Hood. Designed by Brian Mayer of BMD Modern Hoods.
That hood is here with BMD Modern Hoods, a relatively young company headquartered in Newport Beach, CA. BMD was started by a frustrated kitchen designer, Brian Mayer, in 2004—someone who wanted everything, most especially "power and quality" combined with "elegant design and beauty." The H1 Model fulfills BMD's tagline: "The next generation in kitchen ventilation." The overall shape, with its aerodynamic and graceful lines, reminds me of classic cruise ships. The H1 is a welcome shift from the more triangular fare traditionally associated with kitchen ventilation systems.
Measuring 60" w x 30" h x 21" d, the H1 hood uses the finest material: 16 gauge stainless steel in a brushed finish. H1 is also available in a smaller model that's 54" wide. Equipped with variable speed, dual squirrel cage blowers, BMD's signature hood also comes with machine-washable, heavy-duty, aluminum mesh filters. The H1's built-in lights are pre-wired and dimmable; it fits 2 or 3 halogen lights depending on the model's width. The H1 succeeds in doing what BMD's founder intended—the kitchen hood is as effective as it is exquisite (modern, without needless embellishments). An additional boon is that all BMD Modern Hoods are made in the USA. It helps too that the company has a clever motto: a BMD hood "captures more than just your eye...."