Imagine a Louis Vuitton waffle maker. Artist Andrew Lewicki did. His 2012 project can be found online alongside photos of his cast iron Oreo Manhole Cover and Concrete Oranges. The luxury waffle maker with the shape of the Louis Vuitton monogram was never mass produced but you can find some other interesting upscale waffle irons if you go looking. Our waffle maker reviews focused on traditional units that cost about $100 or less but we wondered what you get at a higher price point. We went looking for the waffle makers that break the batter mold in one way or another.
The options from Breville were pretty impressive, especially if you are used to bargain waffle irons. The Smart Waffle Pro 4-Slice comes with a moat around the cooking surface in order to prevent messes. It also has a digital display that lets you select settings based on each specific batch. You can set the dials to Belgian, Classic, Chocolate, Buttermilk or even Custom, and the waffle maker will adjust to make the ideal waffle in those circumstances. There also is a light-to-dark dial so you can get the crispness level you prefer. A button labeled A Bit More lets you add small increments of time to achieve your ideal waffle. The higher-end Brevilles cost more than twice as much as the most expensive waffle irons we reviewed, but if you are a true connoisseur the perks may be worth it.
We tested one of the less expensive All-Clad waffle makers but there are pricier models that are similar in design but make bigger quantities. The 4-square version of All-Clad's waffle maker costs more than most but makes four thick, 4.5-inch waffles at a time. Kitchen Aid makes a double Belgian unit that can produce two 7.5-inch waffles that are thick enough to please the folks who love deep pockets for toppings.
Interesting waffle shapes have been around for a very long time. A quick survey of the internet reveals antique waffle irons in the shape of hearts and stars. That is nothing compared to some of the specialized shapes now, though. You can find, in no particular order of awesomeness, waffle irons that produce Snoopy, Hello Kitty, Mickey Mouse, Powerpuff Girls, Looney Toons, Cinderella, Sponge Bob Square Pants, Winnie the Pooh, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Olaf, circus shapes and sea creature-shaped waffles. A unique waffle shape may not be necessary but it is fun. Pouring syrup over a waffle in the shape of the great state of Texas could bring a smile to even the grumpiest morning person.
When money is not a consideration you can find a lot of different options for a special waffle-making experience. Unique shapes, fancy displays and other features might not change the quality of the finished waffles much, but there is something to be said for having a little fun at breakfast, and some of the expensive convenience features can be right for the right buyer.