We've seen portable induction cooktops before, but never so well-designed. This one from Spanish manufacturer Fagor offers all the advantages of induction: incredible energy efficiency, quick response, and increased safety, with style...We also like the built-in timer, which would be perfect for simmering stock.
The power of induction cooktops is measured in watts, and, as is the case with the electric kettle
, our relatively wimpy power standards in the US limit the potential of this device somewhat. It's rated at 1300 watts, about the most you'd want to pull through old wiring -- equivalent to about a gas burner of 4500 BTUs.
That's small as gas burners go, but here's where the efficiency comes in: 90% of that energy goes into the pan, so you're cooking with around 4000 BTUs. Our conventional gas range has a 10,000 BTU "power burner" -- but only 50% of that energy, or 5000 BTUs, goes into the pan; the rest goes into the air in the kitchen.
Kenmore makes a full-size induction cooktop
for $1700. And the price for the Fagor Portable Cooktop
? We'll have to get back to you on that.