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LG LSRG309ST review: LG's adaptable gas range gives you too many cooking options

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MSRP: $1,999.00
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The Good The $1,999 LG LSRG309ST comes with a multitude of accessories so you can easily expand your cooking repertoire.

The Bad This high-end range didn't excel in any performance categories and offers fewer features than you'd expect for the price.

The Bottom Line LG's LSRG309ST leads in terms of accoutrements like extra racks, a broiler pan and a cast iron griddle, but you can find cheaper ranges with comparable -- or better -- looks, cooking modes and performance results.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

6.8 Overall
  • Design 8
  • Features 7
  • Usability 7
  • Performance 6

At $1,999, the LG Studio Gas Range with Evenjet Convection System (LSRG309ST) is a bit of an outsider. It's a few hundred bucks over the midprice average, but it isn't quite expensive enough to be considered full-on premium. Given that, I'd expect it to have a bit more to offer than the models we've reviewed recently, like the $1,699 Samsung NX58F5700 .

Unfortunately, the only extras it seems to tack on are an inordinate number of oven and warming drawer racks, one of which I still can't figure out how/why/when to use. I do like that it comes with a griddle and a broiler pan, but all of the other stuff doesn't quite justify that $2,000 price tag. That's especially true considering that the Samsung NX58F5700 had more features, better performance and comparable looks (for $300 less). Get the LSRG309ST if you can find it on sale. Otherwise, I'd go with the NX58F5700.

A range apart

Let's face it; ranges aren't the most exciting thing to shop for. Manufacturers seem to slap on stainless steel finishes and call it a day, making it hard to distinguish one brand's metallic appliance from the next. For that reason, small details can go a long way toward making a range stand out.

Fortunately, this LG model has that little extra dose of design appeal.

Like Samsung's NX58F5700, larger burner knobs and a sleekified touchscreen display panel give the LSRG309ST a slight professional edge. Otherwise, it would look exactly like the LRG3085ST, a less expensive LG range with similar options.

Comparing ovens

LG LSRG309ST Electrolux EI30GF35JS Samsung NX58F5700 LG LRG3085ST GE PGB920SEFSS Whirlpool WEG730H0DS KitchenAid KGRS306BSS
Price $1,999 $1,549 $1,699 $1,650 $1,700 $1,749 $1,649
Oven size (in cu. ft.) 5.4 5.0 5.8 5.4 5.6 5.8 5.8
Convection Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cooktop output, in BTUs 5,000 to 19,000 5,000 to 18,000 5,000 to 18,000 5,000 to 17,000 5,000 to 19,000 5,000 to 17,000 5,000 to 17,000

The problem is that the LSRG309ST doesn't have many other distinguishing characteristics.

Compared with many less expensive models, it has a smaller oven and fewer features. Specifically, its oven has a 5.4-cubic-foot capacity, while the Samsung NX58F5700, the Whirlpool WEG730H0DS and the KitchenAid KGRS306BSS all have 5.8-cubic-foot ovens. It's also missing advanced features like the NX58F5700's defrost and dehydrate modes or the WEG730h0DS's frozen bake mode.

In fact, the only thing that separates the pricier LSRG309ST from the pack are its myriad accessories. This gas range comes with a griddle, a broiler pan, two flat racks, one split rack and two smaller racks. The griddle, broiler pan and flat racks were very welcome accessories that made it easier to cook a variety of foods. While those are all useful, I was truly perplexed by the split rack, as well as the two smaller racks.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

A quick online search showed that I wasn't the only one. In fact, a customer who had purchased a different LG range (model number LRG3097ST), asked the following question in LG's online forum:

"My husband is in the kitchen installing our new LRG3097ST as I ask this. I read the manual cover to cover and I don't see an explanation on what the split rack is for. What is it for and how do I use it?I can't wait to see it in action!"

This is one of the responses, presumably from a customer service representative:

"The split rack, for this oven, is designed to allow more baking room in the oven, while at the same time, allowing the baking of larger items. Place the larger (taller) item on a full rack, remove half of the split rack to allow it room, and then you may bake a smaller item on the remaining half rack. If you have additional questions, please contact our Customer Interactive Center at 800-243-0000."

Hm. I guess that makes sense, but any oven rack that requires explanation would probably just end up collecting dust in my kitchen. Of course, you can always comment below if you regularly use a split rack or can think of a potential use for one.

Burgers, burgers everywhere

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

If you're looking to satisfy your burger craving, LG's LSRG309ST is definitely up to the task. This oven operates on a closed-door broil system and delivers a pretty even supply of direct heat. That ensures that bigger batches of burgers are cooked to a similar degree of doneness. This model even comes with its own broiler pan, so you have no excuse not to try it out for yourself.

Although it cooks evenly, it isn't the fastest broiler we've encountered. On average, it took 18 minutes and 54 seconds to broil six 5.3-ounce burgers to 145 degrees. That isn't great, but Whirlpool's gas WEG730H0DS took the longest by far at over 24 minutes.

burgerbroil.jpg
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