At the top of most of my client’s “wish lists” these days is a microwave drawer. The Sharp microwave drawer KB-6001NS is a tough one to beat. Considering Sharp makes the internals for virtually every other microwave drawer on the market, it’s usually only competing a another variant of itself.
The Sharp microwave drawer is one of those appliances that, at first, might seem a bit odd. Very quickly though it becomes an indispensable cooking tool, especially for those who are limited in their kitchen space. The counter space saved becomes immediately apparent, while those who might have otherwise had to build in a microwave into an oven column gain 16″ more inches of storage space. Easily enough to add another drawer or an additional shelf.
The microwave drawer itself is extremely well built, with a sleek stainless door and trim. The handle is painted a gray color that matches the stainless steel, probably to keep fingerprints away. The touch controls are well laid out, though the screen is a typical LCD panel that could have been traded for something a bit more flashy. This isn’t the 90’s.
You can get a different version of the same Sharp microwave drawer with an automatic opening and closing drawer. I prefer the manually operated one (this version) as it leaves one less thing to go wrong. The drawer action is strong, if not a bit stiff.
Interior space is a factor. If you’re used to over-the-range microwaves you’re going to immediately notice the height restrictions. Some items you may have been able to squeeze into the microwave before (e.g. tall baby bottles or glasses) will no longer make the cut. It’s not a deal breaker by any means, but it is something you should be warned about.
The 1.o cu. ft. Sharp microwave drawer interior will fit most 9″ x 13″ casserole dishes. At 1,000 watts, it comes pre-programmed with a Sensor Reheat, Defrost, and Popcorn setting. Because the front of the unit is already “framed” it doesn’t need a kit to look right and sit flush. However, it does require a bit of retrofitting to most cabinetry. The unit itself is 26 3/16″ deep and so in order to sit flush within the cabinet, the unit must be snug against the wall. This requires you to have the back part of the cabinet cut out. Otherwise you end up 3/4″ (or 1/2″) short by hitting the back of the cabinet. This is a detail virtually EVERY kitchen designer overlooks and so don’t be alarmed if you see them cutting up the cabinet on your job site – there is simply no way around it.
Pros: Beautiful look, concealment / placement, 1000 watts cooking power in a tiny drawer
Cons: Size still requires retrofitting most cabinets, interior height limited.