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That old saying. Beauty comes from within. Well, for me that involves a good breakfast usually consisting of rye bread. I'll be honest, rye bread when it isn't toasted is not the best. Which leads me to my next review, living in a house that not only has to feed me but several other people we need a butch toaster built for stamina that can take on hoards of people wanting breakfast.
The Dualit 4 slice toaster has proven to be just the gadget, not only have I found it to be a superb toaster it also suits my old school glamour taste for my kitchen accessories.
The product itself boasts 4 slots so you can toast 4 slices of bread at a time - A bonus when feeding lots of people (Cue production line in the kitchen when we have friends to stay) As opposed to have a button to "pop your toast" it has a handle at the front which you use to lift out the slices (No more showers of bread crumbs with an over zealous pop) As you would expect with any standard toaster it boats a full length crumb catching tray making for very easy cleaning. I have found that the slots are quite wide so for those of you with a penchant for eating bagels of a Saturday morning this could be just the ticket.
The product I have runs on a standard UK mains voltage (240v) power supply but I am not sure if you are able to purchase for overseas - I am sure if you check the website at www.dualit.com you will be able to contact them to ask.
The product works on a twist timer (The further you twist around, the more toasted your toast will be!) For my particular model I have a handy guide for light/medium/dark toast which suits us well as we all now know where we want our setting to be without having to re-adjust each time you use it. I have found it is quite quick to toast the bread, it doesn't appear to leave you hanging around waiting (Perhaps this is because I like my toast on the light option)
The product, thus far, has been easy to clean, as I mentioned before it has a crumb catching tray which makes emptying it much easier and for cleaning the outside I have just given it a wipe with a cloth and this seems to do the trick. The toaster is quite heavy (I am going to call it well built) but be honest, once you have it in place, how often do you relocate your toaster of a morning.....?! It appears to be made well, and so far I have not had to replace anything or send it for repairs (I hope this review isn't the toasty kiss of death...) From a Dualit point of view I actually purchased this item as my parents have had the older model for around 30 years and have so far only replaced 2 of the elements. Something I am hoping to beat.
The product is a little on the pricy side (Coming in at about £150 when I brought it) but I would say that having used £6 toasters throughout my uni years it is well worth it. Especially if I am going to get the next 30 years from it... (Fingers crossed) Also, for this price please remember you do get some old school glamour into the kitchen because this is a lovely looking toaster (No cheap white plastics here) and you can even colour co-ordinate to your own style (Or heck, go all out and get spotty - I suppose at least that way you match whatever kitchen you change to......)
Would I recommend this to you? Yes, as students if you told me I was going to spend such an absurd amount of money on a toaster I would have, quite frankly, laughed in your face and told you that my precious supermarket special would have been just fine. But now I look back I realise just what I was missing, my toasting epiphany if you will, we had to purchase several of these because, well, we just kept breaking them, or they kept trying to attack us (We melted one....) I would say take the leap, splash out and get something that is well built, will last you and will toast you some beautiful slices (and or bagels, depending on what your poison is)
The only negative I have is that I still have to slice the bread, take it out and butter my toast....... Can you buy something to do that for you....?
Finally abandoning the notion of constantly replacing lightweight toasters on a 2-4 year cycle, we bit the bullet and dug much deeper into funds, to acquire the fabled Dualit. Now in its 13th year, and with the model apparently unchanged, I can confirm that, as with so many things, You Get What You Pay For! The toaster is strong, easily cleaned, requires no repairs or attention, toasts varied breads evenly and is the first toaster I've known to respond accurately to the timer.
It HAS had one replacement element, but that was the result of overenthusiastic poking about internally, to dislodge some ill-conceived plan I had had, for melba toast. Because it comes from a respectable manufacturer, it has a good parts availability and so I had no delays in recommissioning it.
In these times of profligate waste arising from low-cost products with shorter and shorter lifespans, it is a pleasure to own and use a classic design like this, very few of which have found their ways yet to landfills, I'll be bound!
But - be wiser than I - buy one of these FIRST!
The new Dualit adjustable toasters now come with extra wide 28mm slots and are now standard on all models. Clever wire guides adjust to the width of the bread to keep it central during toasting. A unique sandwich cage, with a built in drip tray, can now be inserted into any slot. These are supplied with Combis but can be bought as an accessory for all other models. New improved selector switches allow more control of heating elements and the toasters come fitted with ProHeat elements.