By Adam Coleman

SYDNEY: Omega is continuing to target the induction market, with its first multi-zone induction cooktop, only the second induction product from the European supplier after launching a single induction hob earlier this year.

Nicknamed the ‘paella plate’, the OI63BA features one very large, 270mm diameter heat zone plus two smaller 180mm and 145mm diameter zones.

“The Omega OI63BA reflects Australia’s take on modern cuisine, being specifically designed to cater for a mix of Mediterranean and Asian cooking styles,” said Omega appliances product manager, Mark Warden. 

“The OI63BA also represents yet another milestone in the inexorable advance of induction cooking on the Australian market – the speed, safety and energy efficiency of induction, along with its increasingly competitive pricing, makes it a serious threat to the dominance of gas in the cooking arena,” he said.

The configuration is designed for those families who favour dishes such as paella, stir fries and pasta that require larger cooking vessels and a higher intensity of heat.  The layout aims to ensure a paella pan, wok or stock pot can be used simultaneously with other saucepans, and allow plenty of room to manoeuvre.

Induction creates a magnetic field due to the flow of electricity through a coil or inductor. Any cooking vessel that is made of a material that is attracted to a magnet including ferrous metals such as iron, steel, cast iron – will heat up when placed on this magnetic field and hence heat its contents.  The surface of the cooktop remains cool and therefore safety is a benefit.

Control is another major advantage of induction.  The user has complete and instant control over cooking temperatures without the time lag experienced with conventional electric and gas cooktops. 

The Omega OI63BA induction cooktop is a single, sleek, frameless piece of black glass with touch controls and LED displays for the nine heat settings of each cooking zone.  Residual heat/safety LEDs indicate when a cooking zone has been used for some time and retained some of the heat from the saucepan.

Each cooking zone has its own timer and the cooktop features an automatic pan size recognition sensor.  Each heat zone will detect the diameter of the cooking vessel and only heat to that size, saving energy.

The OI63BA ‘paella plate’ induction cook top is available nationally to appliance specialists, electrical retail outlets and some department stores and will retail for around RRP $2299.  It carries a two year in-home warranty on parts and labour.