As host of the food network shows Food Detectives and Chopped, which pits chefs against each other in cooking competitions, Ted Allen is used to challenges. When it came to renovating the Brooklyn row house he shares with his partner, interior designer Barry Rice, the challenge was designing a professional kitchen for developing cookbook recipes that still felt right for entertaining.
© Lucy Schaeffer
Their solution was to create a hang-out zone on one side of the island with a banquette, wet bar and built-in Miele coffee and espresso maker (from $3,000; miele.com). "It keeps our friends out of our hair while we're working," Allen says.