For some reason, built-in appliances may seem like a mystery, but you should buy a cooktop based on its ability to simmer consistently or boil water quickly. If you are looking for a gas cooktop, Miele and Viking are both decent choices.
That being said, we will look at the difference between cooktops and rangetops, compare both companies and then products.
Rangetop vs. Cooktop
We will be comparing cooktops which sit on the countertop. Rangetops sit on the cabinet. Have a look at the difference:
There are functional differences as well. Rangetops can be purchased with grills or griddles whereas cooktops cannot (although you can buy a portable griddle).
Rangetops will have more powerful burners as well. Gas cooktops, however, will now have 1 or 2 pro style burners for faster cooking.
Carl Miele founded his company in Gutersloh, Germany in 1899, and it's still a family-owned business. They produced their first vacuum cleaner, the Melior, in 1927.
Miele, is the only premium brand in the household appliance industry represented on all five continents.
They have some of the strictest quality control practices in the industry and manufacture in one German factory. In an era of outsourcing, they even manufacture every components in their products.
Miele products typically are the most reliable in the industry.
Viking Range Corp
Viking Range Corporation was founded by Fred Carl, Jr., a fourth generation building contractor, as a speculative venture aimed at developing the first commercial-type range specifically designed, engineered and certified for home use.
At one time, 50% of all professional products were sold by Viking. However, lack of investment and increased competition from Wolf, Thermador, Jenn-Air and Miele have taken a toll.
In 2013, Viking was sold to Middleby, a commercial manufacturer. They have introduced new products but the legacy quality issues persist.
To be transparent, we stopped selling Viking 3 years ago. At the time, it was the most serviced brand by almost 30%.
Miele vs. Viking Gas Cooktops
Miele 36” Gas Cooktop KM3475 - $1,699
- 5 Sealed Burners
- Double Insert Super Burners – 2 Burner: 15,300 BTU Output
- Super Burner – 1 Burner: 12,000 BTU Output
- High Speed Burners – 2 Burners: 9,000 BTU Output
- Sealed burners with aluminum flame ports
- Automatic electronic spark ignition/re-ignition
- Fast Ignition System
- Center Control Panel
- Stainless Steel Knob Controls
- Ignition Safety Control
- Cast Iron Grates: Hexa Grate (As shown) or Contemporary Linear Grate
- Must be ordered specifically as Natural Gas or Liquid Propane
- Ships with Wok Grate
Viking 36” Gas Cooktop RVGC33615BSS - $1,509
- 5 Sealed Burners / Permanently sealed burners - spills cannot enter burner box
- Dual Stacked Center Burner – 17,000 BTU Output
- 1 Burner: 12,000 BTU Output (Right front)
- 1 Burner: 5,000 BTU Output (Right rear)
- 2 burners: 9,100 BTU Output (Left front and left rear)
- Automatic Electric Spark Ignition
- Exclusive - SureSpark Ignition System
- Cast-Iron Continuous Grates
- Metal Die-Cast Knobs with child-proof, push-to-turn safety feature
Who Has the Better Cooktop?
As stated in beginning, cooktops are easy to buy. You should be looking at the most important features, which for cooktops are boil and simmer. In this case, you will be comparing one 17,000 BTU burner versus Miele's two power burners at 15,300.
Viking has a dedicated simmer burner, but Miele has the ability to simmer on a few. Both cooktops should perform based on your cooking preferences.
Despite being a good company, Middleby has not turned Viking around and continues having problems with product quality and customer service in all areas.
Unfortunately in this comparison, they are being compared to the standard. Miele is one of the most reliable brands in the appliance industry.
As I write this, your choice should probably be Miele.
Want to learn more about gas cooking products? Download the Yale Gas Cooking Buying Guide with new products, specs and detailed profiles of all the major brands. Well over 175,000 people have read a Yale Guide.