Imagine it’s the late 1940s. You’re cooking dinner on your state-of-the-art Westinghouse gas range, when a strange noise comes from a corner of the kitchen. Your Frigidaire refrigerator has gone kaput. If you’re living in Middletown, in Orange County, you know what to do: Notify “Big Mike” Formisano, who owns the appliance repair shop down the street.
Times have changed, and that Frigidaire may look quite different nowadays (no more round corners!), but you can still get quality service — and a slew of modern, efficient appliances — at Michael’s Appliance Center, now run by Big Mike’s son Gary.
Michael’s carries a wide range of machines — more than 300 appliances are on display at a time — to make all parts of your life easier, from cooking, to laundry, to outdoor grilling. Last year the store amped up the outdoor inventory with patio heaters, sturdy no-maintenance Adirondack chairs, and firepit “flame tables.” Its newest appliance is the Kamado Joe grill, an insulated ceramic charcoal grill that turns out heavenly food.
Frigidaire is still a best-seller, but if you’re in the market for high-end style, Michael’s has the inventory and attentive service as well. The shop is one of only 26 appliance centers nationwide to have a Wolf/Sub-Zero “Living Kitchen.” Dozens of ranges, ovens, fridges, microwaves, and other kitchen appliances in a home-kitchen setting allow the customer to experience them in their “natural habitat,” explains Purchasing Manager Chris Walsh. Exploring myriad varieties of oven handles in person, and watching a demonstration of how quickly water boils on an induction range, makes consumer choices easier.
Oh, and that curvy old Frigidaire? You can enjoy that fashion once again: Michael’s sells Bakelite-reminiscent Smeg fridges and small appliances in funky retro colors, too.
Michael’s Appliance Center can be found at 585 East Main Street, Middletown.