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Social networking in the kitchen

A new circular cooktop makes it easy for groups to congregate and work together in the kitchen.

A major trend in home design is architecture reflecting the reality that the kitchen is where we gather and socialize. Now Evo's Affinity 25E cooktop takes that concept to a new level--and shape.

Gather 'round the cooktop. Evo

This innovative cooktop offers a 25-inch diameter round cooking surface with inner and outer temperature zones that you can combine or use separately to create custom dishes in a social setting. Cooking temperatures on the work surface range from 150 degrees Fahrenheit to 525 degrees, so this cooktop can probably do anything a more ordinary looking appliance can do.

Install the cooktop at the end of an island to allow several people access to the surface at once. When you entertain, your guests can join you in the kitchen and help with the preparations without getting in your way.

The cooking surface is ceramic-coated steel, which means you can cook food directly on top of it, without pots and pans, for a dramatic presentation. Or use your regular cookware--it's fine to heat it on the cooktop as you normally would. The heater is sealed against spillovers and not exposed to dropped food. A stainless steel drip pan surrounds the entire cook surface, and dual collection trays make it simple to clean up after cooking.

Monitor cooking temperatures on a digital LED screen that also shows a warning when the surface temperature is more than 100 degrees.

The Affinity provides straightforward function inspired by its inventive form.