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All Clad

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  • ej Dec 8, 2005 11:31 AM
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I know that there are a lot of negative opinions about All Clad on this board, but for those who have and love theirs, which of their lines would you choose--the stainless or the copper core? Also, what do you think of their non-stick fry pans as I need a new 10 inch and hate my Calphalon?

Also, has anyone tried the Sur la Table copper fry pans? $99 seems like a good price

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  1. I have been slowly but surely replacing some of my pans with All Clad over the past several years. I use the stainless line and am really happy with it. I have 2 of their non-stick frying pans and really like them. I used to buy inexpensive non-stick knowing I would replace them every few years with more inexpensive pans, but I took advantage of some sale several years ago and got an All Clad non-stick and it lasted really well so I got another. My favorite pan is the 3 qt. saute pan in stainless (NOT non-stick). I have a couple of sauce pans in various sizes and find they clean really well and, of course, cook really well, and I cook alot! That said, I would never replace my Le Creuset dutch ovens which I have had for at least 20 years.

    7 Replies
    1. re: Pat Darnell

      all clad, le creuset and a cast iron pan - all i could need. i use the stainless line of all clad as well and absolutely love them.

      1. re: djk

        djk, i agree completely.

        1. re: lotsanivanh

          Yep. Love my AC stainless cookware. I have quite a collection...many pieces that I got for a fair amount under MSRP on ebay back when ebay didn't suck (circa 2000).

      2. re: Pat Darnell

        I have the AC 5qt stainless saute - couldn't possibly live without it for 4 sometimes 5 adults (pan-seared chops, steaks, various patties - items that can be started on the top and finished in the oven, or that I want the fond for sauce). But I do use the cheap restaurant grade non-sticks I buy at the rest supply store @ $20 for most of my actual saute needs. I've had the last one for over a year with virtually daily use. My experience with expensive non-sticks has been that the coating eventually wears off. I have never had an All-clad non-stick, but my last two were a Cuisinart (a gift) and a wonderful evasee from Bourgeaut - the evasee was my ideal pan (nice high sides) for everything from gravy to stir fry, but the coating just gave up... not worth $80.

        1. re: Pat Darnell

          all clad s/s are good pans but you could do better for much less money. i reccomend sitram catering line s/s or paderno grand gourmet. i think amazon has some deals on sitram and bridgekitchenware.com sells paderno.

          1. re: josh L
            a
            A Fish Called Wanda

            I just took a look at sitram pans and they look great and are much cheaper than All-Clad. I love All-Clad, but it's very expensive, so it's hard for me to buy new pieces. Would anyone happen to have any experience with Sitram's braising pots?

            Also, is there a difference between catering and professional lines?

            Thanks for this wonderful tip on less expensive s/s cookware :)

            Link: http://www.beyondsalmon.com

          2. re: Pat Darnell

            I'm glad so many people are happy with their All-Clad stuff - as expensive as it is, it'd be a shame if they weren't! I have a big stainless sauté pan that my wife gave me, and while it's a handy size and shape I've never found anything it was especially good for. In spite of the fancy sandwich construction it still has bad hot spots, and lean meats seem to weld themselves instantly to the surface - you can bust'em loose by deglazing, but I don't always want to do that. And though she thought it'd work as a substitute for a wok, it doesn't heat up hot ENOUGH overall for that, and the flat bottom needs too much oil.

            Knowing what kind of money she spent on this I've never uttered any complaints about it, but while I use both the cast-iron pans and my cheap & cheerful BB&Beyond 5-qt. nonstick pot every day, the All-Clad mostly just sits at the back of the bottom pots & pans drawer with a bunch of other seldom-used items stacked up in it.

          3. b
            Bean Counter

            I love my All-Clad pans. I like the stainless steel for the simple fact that these can go in the dishwasher. One of my favorites is actually one that came in a set and I wouldn't have bought on its own - the 3 qt dutch oven. I know thats not what its actually called but thats what it looks like. Perfect for small batches of soup and sauces. I also regularly use the 12" frying pan.

            1. We keep a kosher home so I have the excuse to have two sets of pans: I have all clad stainless and like it a lot but the handles get hot and as of now I dont have the non-stick frying pan.

              I also have classic calphalon and I am slowly destroying it as we have put it in the diswahser - a no no. When it dies, I wont be unhappy.

              I also recently purchased a ScanPan saute pan and it is the BEST of the three: reasonably priced, non-stick, diswasher safe and with a molded plastic handle which doesnt need a cover.

              1. I use the stainless stuff all the time and love them, but don't have the nonstick fry pans. I use Faberware millenium or calphalon ones instead. They do the job and were a better value when I bought them.

                1. I'll tell you what I told my sons when they graduated from college and went out on their own. Hell, I did more than just tell them, this is what I gave them for starters:
                  LeCreuset 5 qt casserole/dutch oven/pot -- whatever you call it, it performs myriad functions.
                  8 & 12" cast iron skillets
                  6 & 10" restaurant non-stick saute pans with instructions to toss them when the finish wears off
                  3 qt Corning Ware saucepan for re-heating starchy foods in the microwave. No novice needs to have their confidence bruised trying to not scorch beans or rice on the stove.
                  A 10" Sabatier chef's knife (carbon steel)
                  A 1 yr. subscription to FINE COOKING and copy of all my favorite recipes that they could reasonably tackle.

                  Five + years later, both boys are the principle cooks in their families.

                  I don't think accumulating a set of anything is a good idea because every piece of gear has a different function. There is NO perfect material that does each separate function well.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Sherri

                    Oops -- I posted this to the wrong question. My apologies. It was meant to go to Help Me Start My Cookware Collection ...........
                    Lordy, I miss my mind.

                    1. re: Sherri

                      Still, it was a spot-on post. The mind is still hanging in there.

                      1. re: danna

                        Thanks for the kind words.

                  2. Love my All Clads. I have the basic brushed stainless pans which I buy when they have their factory 2nds sale in Washington PA. The last time I also bought one of the non-stick pans, 10-inch. It's great as well.

                    1. Here's the best advice I can give you and it came from these chowhound boards:
                      - Copper Core All Clad and I've bought my stuff from the site below

                      - Farberware Millenium for non-stick. Excellent heft and durability for non-stick cookware.

                      Link: http://www.cookwarenmore.com/home/ind...

                      1. I have just about every piece All-clad makes except that Pasta Pentola that they want $400 for. I also have not bought a non-stick.

                        I have the Stainless Steel. Love them.

                        I bought a Cuisinart Non-stick 12" frying pan at Marshall's (Winner's in Canada). It has had almost daily use for the better part of 2 years. It seems to cook evenly and the non-stick finish is fine. Cook's Illustrated didn't like it because when they whacked it down on its edge on a counter it came apart. Well, I have not whacked mine on the counter so it is still doing fine. It was about $30. Winner's/Marshall's seems like a good place to pick up decent items at really good prices.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Conductorchris

                          Obviously, all-clad is pricey, but for years I've been getting cookware for Christmas & birthdays so I've carefully and selectively built a fantastic kitchen on a very tight budget. There are four things I cannot live without:

                          Le Creuset frech ovens, I have the smallest and a really big one, can't remember size. Both oval that are so versatile and incredibly easy to cook in. I LOVE them and never dreamed anything could compare until...

                          I finally splurged on two all-clad pans, 3qt saute pan and 3qt sauce pan. They are so wonderful!!!! At first I worried about food sticking, but the beauty is I actually learned how to truly sear meat and take advantage of that glorious fond like I had never been able to do in anything else, including Le Creuset. I immediately became a better cook simply by learning how NOT to let food stick and guess what? It never does!

                          I still keep an 8# non-stick calphalon around for scrambled eggs, pancakes & grilled cheese, but all over non-stick pans have long since deteriorated and need to be thrown out after only 3 years of use. And, I was very careful with them always.

                          So...IMHO all-clad is worth it's weight in gold and I have never regretted the $$$ I shelled out for them. BTW, almost all of my best cookware including all-clad and le creuset was purchased at marshalls or TJ Maxx!

                        2. i've had All-clad since my wedding about a decade ago, and haven't and likely won't ever have to spend another dime on similar cookware. as far as non-stick, my all-clad non-stick has lasted those 10 years, but i do use some cheapo disposable ones as well for low heat things like omelettes.

                          the copper core line seems gimicky to my mind. they look pretty, but they won't for long, just like regular all-clads.

                          i'm sure there are less expensive options, but amortized over time, i really don't think it matters one bit.

                          1. All-Clad stainless steel absolutely. Mine all still looks new and performs beautifully. I have a 12" frying pan which has actually started to take second place to the AC stainless French Skillet ( much lighter but performs just as well) saute pan; 4 quart soup pot which works as a soup pot, casserole, smaller quantities of stock since this is a small household and many other things. I love the performance, the appearance and clean up is truly easy. A little BKF when needed and they are lifelong investments. Another factor that one might want to consider is that the AC Copper Core is not induction ready.

                            1. Have slowly replaced my other cookware, except for the Le Creuset stuff, with All Clad MC2. Same as the stainless and copper, unless you need the looks of the stainless or copper outside. I dont. Totally agree with earlier poster. Don't buy expensive stuff for non stick. The internal coating eventually wears out, and you are left with an expensive display piece which doesnt work anymore. Bed, Bath and Beyond sells the Tramontina line of non stick. Can buy a non stick 10" skillet for about $15 with the coupons which are everywhere, use it, and toss it away when it gets too scratched and buy another one. I'm very happy with mine. Or any restaurant supply store has low cost non stick skillets that do the same thing.

                              5 Replies
                              1. re: trakman

                                I'm going through the trauma of just buying a 12 in" all-ply clad Tramontina skillet and a 16 qt. Tramontina stock pot. (the latter not being fully clad but it has a fully clad base disk. All the stainless is 18/10 grade. I spent $39 for the skillet and $43 for the stock pot. Grand total of $82+tax at Wal-Hell.
                                So why am I feeling traumatized you ask? Well for one thing I COULD HAVE spent a little under $500 for a similar All-Clad combo. And the other reason is that , although painfully, I did spent money at Wall-Hell. I'm feeling guilty. I've been reading up on the comparison of these two lines for three days and for the life of me I can't find a reason NOT to use the Tramontina. It is almost identical in feel and look. It is made in China however and it will probably be revealed later that there are arsenic crystals in the metal composition, or it was made by slave labor 8 year olds.
                                I haven't used it yet. I'm still hoping someone can steer me straight so I can return it and buy the All-Clad. In the meantime I'm just looking at it. And it looks good!

                                1. re: joe_the_cook

                                  i can't speak on the trauma or the quality of the tramontina. but i will say that the all clad covered 12 in skillet is on sale at many places (namely crate and barrel and amazon with free shipping i think) for $89. maybe exchange the skillet? i love mine.

                                  http://www.amazon.com/All-Clad-Inch-S...

                                  i haven't tried the stockpot
                                  http://www.amazon.com/All-Clad-59916-...

                                  1. re: qwerty78

                                    Hmmmmm.............Now I'm thinking a trip to Wal-Mart's return desk is in my immediate future. Thanks for the info!

                                  2. re: joe_the_cook

                                    I thought Tramontina was made in Brazil? Maybe the WM line is made in China?
                                    I saw it at the local store here and it looked nice. If I didn't already have a large triply ss pan, I wouldn't have had a problem mixing that one in.

                                    I have the All Clad SS line and have really enjoyed it. I've got their 6qt full clad stock pot and it works like a champ for a small batch of gumbo.

                                    1. re: grnidkjun

                                      I've been reading up on Tramontina. Apparently they started in Italy and then relocated to Brazil some years ago. You're correct. The WM products are out-sourced to China.

                                2. I consider my All Clad stainless purchases to be some of the smartest buys I've ever made....except for the frying pans, which just can't compare to a well-seasoned old Griswold or ERIE cast iron skillet (I've mostly stopped using the All-Clad skillets except when cooking with something very acidic). For basic saucepans, they are incredible work horses: sturdy, heavy, don't rock and roll, and I haven't scorched or burnt anything in years, since with my All -clad I can "walk away" from simmers without fear.

                                  I have 4, 3, 2, 1 and 1/2 and 1 quart saucepans--all used constantly--a 5.5 quart saucier--also a favorite, a new 2 qt. saucier, a 3 quart saute pan, a VERY frequently used 6 quart stock pot (but it's wide and more useful than a traditional stock pot; that's the stew/chili/thick soups pan of choice), the aforementioned 7 and 10 inch skillets, and a more useful (simply because it's huge and the sides are higher; thus I can braise as it has a lid, too) 13" French skillet, and the larger roasting pan (which I don't use very often; it's huge....but when Thanksgiving and Christmas roll around, I'm glad I have it).

                                  I still want the smaller roaster, a Windsor of some moderate size, and I'm happy to report that I just purchased the 10 quart rondeau.

                                  Sauce pans and stock pots are where the all-clad construction really shines, if you ask me...if you have to chose, that's the area I'd stock up on, first.