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Tramontina - Is it quality...Does it compare with...

Does it compare with all-clad, sitram, etc, etc. I was at my local discount outlet store and noticed a 12" Tramontina saute pan marked from $199 to $59. It is the TRI-PLY clad model. Not sure if aluminum or copper core. Seemed pretty nice, but not sure how to tell. I then noticed i could find the same deal at walmart.com for like $40. This seems super cheap for a quality saute pan, so i am a bit nervous. I want to buy stuff that i will have and use for the rest of my days :) Is it in the same league with the all-clad and its competitors? or is it a cheaper line with roughly the same "selling stats"?

Thanks all,
JD

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  1. Be careful with Tramontina lines. Some are really cheap and cheaply made, and those are the ones you will find at Walmart.

    To get an idea of the best Tramontina, visit 125West.com's website. They carry the high end Tramontina. It is made in Brazil and is top quality, and is comparable to most of the name brands out there. Stats will be available on this site.

    If you see cheap Tramontina, it is lower grade and sometimes non-stick. They produce goods for all markets, so what you need to look for is what you see on this web site.

    I hear that Sur Le Table carries this line in their store. I have never been in one, so I don't know. You might want to check it out there for comparative pricing.

    6 Replies
    1. re: RGC1982

      I have a couple of pieces of Tramontina, one a 12 qt pasta pot, that I bought quite a few years ago at Sam's Club. No problems with them and use them several times a week. I also bought some Sitram from Chef's Catalog long ago before the prices went up, both work very well for me. I cook three meals a day, seven days a week.

      I usually look for those "Try Me" deals because I can't bring myself to spend the money on All Clad. For a saute pan or for boiling pasta, you simply don't neet that tryply clad all the way up the pan. When I had a chocolate shop and made lots of fondan and caramel that feature was very important for even temperature control, but for boiling water or cooking in a short sided pan it's just not necessary. Nice if you can afford it though!

      Dave

      1. re: RGC1982

        The Tramontina that you see online at Walmart is not cheap. It is three ply stainless, and wonderful cookware. You have to go online to buy it, and it is the same quality that you see on the Tramontina web site. I was so amazed at the difference in Walmarts price and the price on their web site, so I called Tramontina, and the women that I spoke to said it was exactly the same, but for what ever reason Walmart is given a great price. If you buy it online they will ship it to a Walmart near you so there is no shipping charge. You can also see it at Tuesday morning, but the price is higher (she told me that too). By the way, I have all-clad too, but prefer the Tramontina.

        1. re: Mother of four

          We have it in stock in our local wal-marts, here in NC.

          MAC

        2. re: RGC1982

          Actually even the tri-ply is often made in China. I really don't care where it's made as long as the quality standards that are set by the manufacture are high. For instance Brazil is where Henckels lower-end knives are made. All of Henckels higher quality knives are hand forged and made in Solingen, Germany. In my opinion any of the tri-ply from Calphalon, Tramontina, Kitchen-Aid are equal to the All-Clad. I have a few pieces of the Tramontina and the Calphalon tri-ply and like them very much. The Calphalon has glass lids which I like. Another high quality pan is the Chantal enamel - and I have found these at TJMaxx stores.

          1. re: rem.rev

            Tramontina's 18/10 stainless steel tri-ply cookware is its 80116 product line.

            These goods are NSF-listed and are manufactured at Tramontina's Nanhai, Guangdong, China facility.

          2. re: RGC1982

            Wrong, partner. Wal-Mart carries several Tramontina lines, including the TriClad line, which is very fine, well made cookware. I have some of this and it compares quite favorably with All-Clad, which has been the gold standard of cookware.

          3. What i was looking at is the "jumbo cooker". It seems to be the same as what is on the 125west.com website for $150. It is $59 at the discount store.

            Here is the same thing from walmart.com for $49:
            http://www.walmart.com/catalog/produc...

            Really...the same thing..$150 on 125west.com and $49 from walmart...or could it be different stuff that is really close in appearance?

            I dont remember 100% but i think the one at the store i saw said maid in china, not brazil....

            Thoughts?

            6 Replies
            1. re: justinandlaura1

              I bought 4 Tramontina non-stick anodized pans from a Walmart clearance a number of years ago. I chose them based on the very low price, and the fact that the aluminum was suitably thick (and good rivet handle attachment)(labeled 'profesional quality'). They have served their purpose well. The 2 that I use most, an 8" skillet, and the stir fry pan, have lost some of their non-stick quality, but that is normal in my experience. These two are 'made in Indonesia', the other two (3 qt sauce, 12" skillet) are made in Italy.

              paulj

              1. re: paulj

                Wal-Mart offers several variations of the Tramontina "hard-anodized" non-stick cookware. One variation has a conventional handle. Another variation has a highly polished cast stainless steel handle just like those found on the Tramontina 18/10 tri-ply cookware. The difference in price is but a few dollars.

              2. re: justinandlaura1

                Really tough. I mean, the Wal-Mart site says Tri-Ply Clad just like the other places do, but can it really be the same thing at 1/3 the price?

                If you're going to buy it from them go check it in the store and see what it says. Who knows, maybe they are making it somewhere new that is cheaper because they are bowing to Wal-Mart's wishes.

                Just to point this out, I bought a very similar size and shape Tramontina pan from Costco a while back. Mine is a Tri-Ply *Base*, though, not Tri-Ply Clad. It is otherwise very much the same. 5qt straight-sided large covered stainless pan, 11-12 inches diameter, complete with the long handle on one side and helper handle on the other. It looks the same if you don't pay attention to the details, although if you look closely the Tri-Ply Base has a heavy disc base going on there, whereas the Clad is more rounded on the bottom. So you do want to make sure they are not passing the Base off as the Clad. All that said, it's entirely possible to me that the Clad is that low, because my Tri-Ply Base pan only cost $29 at Costco.

                1. re: justinandlaura1

                  $49 is a very good price on that item.

                  Probably $200 for a similar item in the high-priced brand of all-clad cookware, if not more. (The high-priced brand includes an almost identical item in its top-rated set).

                  Basically, it is a straight-sided pan with a helper handle and a fitted stainless steel lid.

                  It is presently about $76 at Wal-Mart.

                  1. re: justinandlaura1

                    My husband's friend took 2 cordless drills apart that he bought same day to test something he had heard. What he discovered was the same company had used plastic gears for the big box store's prices and higher quality metal ones for the MSRP ones. I don't know if they use the same principle or how they would accomplish that with cookware but it COULD explain it...

                    1. re: CaseyDee

                      Very good point. ...and smart husband. lol Products made for big-box stores look identical to other quality products offered through reputable cooking / retail stores. Why else could Costco offer a 6 quart Kitchen-Aid mixer so much cheaper than elsewhere. I don't buy into what many say about the "volume" making up for it being offered at a lower price. If you read the reviews, this particular mixer shakes and shimmies while being used. I'm assuming the difference is "internal". (plastic vs. metal parts)
                      After several negative experiences with big-box store's products, I now have returned to shopping for "quality" (when it counts) at reputable retail stores and more than willing to pay the difference.

                  2. You might also check out Cooks Illustrated (you can get a 14-day free trial at their website: www.cooksillustrated.com), as they test EVERYthing that you'd want in your kitchen, including the cheaper models. In fact, they recommend the Tramontina cast-iron douch oven as pretty much comparable to Le Creuset. They've got recommendations on saute pans, sauce pans, garlic presses, mandolines, instant-read thermometers, box graters, salad spinners -- pretty much anything you'd ever want. I've been quite happy following their recommendations . . .whether for a more expensive item or for a cheaper-yet-comparable one.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: bebevonbernstein

                      Tramontina seems to make products for all price points, or at least from inexpensive to commercial. I don't know about the unnecessarily expensive market. I have a couple of very nice Tramontina stainless steel mixing bowls from the restaurant section of Samsclub. I've also see $10 Tramontina machetes intended for everyday rural use in Brazil.

                      paulj

                      1. re: paulj

                        Well, I do think it's important to keep in mind that just because it's inexpensive, it doesn't mean it's not good. The enamel-covered cast-iron casserole recommended on CI was $30, which certainly makes it inexpensive, and they often recommend inexpensive pots vs. All-Clad -- if one does the research, one can come up with inexpensive alternatives to the very expensive stuff.

                        One note: I have seen that they don't necessarily recommend entire lines -- that is, they'll recommend a 10" saute pan from one inexpensive line, and a 3-qt saucepan from another.

                        1. re: paulj

                          Yes, I agree. Tramontina has the typical three-tier quality levels. After reading ATK recommendations, I purchased my first Tramontina 5.5 qt. dutch oven at Sears as a "Black Friday special", ($49.00) and couldn't be happier.

                          Although, I didn't tune into "Made in China" on the box, it was only after I had used it and turned it upside down, that I noticed its CHINA origin; or, I may have been influenced and NOT purchased it.

                          As it turns out, this has become my go to pot for everything from soups/stews, braising, tempura and general cooking. I love it. The only minor issue is that the eggshell interior has discolored a bit. ...nothing that bothers me.

                          Also, when compared to my Emeril dutch oven, it is much sturdier. It only took a plastic bottle falling on the Emeril handle to break it which greatly affects the handling of the oven.

                      2. Thanks all. I ended up finding a walmart that had this set in stock. They are identical to the expensive tramontina's...I bought a saute pan from tuesday morning for $60 that was marked down from $200 and compared it to the walmart pan...build, weight, markings, etc...identical. Only diff is the walmart pan also has the NSF stamp. I bought the whole set. 8-pc set for 150 and bought the 12" saute and fry pan and 3 and 4qt sauce pans seperatly for another 150. $300 and I have a full kitchen of cookware that seems to be very high quality. Its tri-ply claded up the side walls of every pot and pan......Seems like a steal of deal to me...I am super happy.

                        Thanks all,
                        JD

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: justinandlaura1

                          NSF is a common marking on restaurant cookware (all brands). I assume it is something to do with compliance with some sort of industry standard, but haven't actually looked into that.
                          paulj

                          1. re: paulj

                            check out nsf.org . It's a public health and safety organization. Learn something new every day!

                          2. re: justinandlaura1

                            Sounds like you got a great deal. Enjoy them.

                          3. I have been researching cookware for a while, and the Tramontina at Wal-Mart, is the exact set sold everywhere else for $300 and up.

                            Since I don't shop at Wal-Mart anymore, I got a nice fully clad Kenmore set 8pc. for $99.99 on sale regularly $199.99 (until jan 26), and I got an 8" Tramontina sauté at tuesday morning for $29 to complete the set.

                            I know All-clad is a wonderful product, but in the end it is only stainless steel and aluminum, which cannot justify (for me any way) the 400-500 premium over the price of these cooksets, I cannot believe that the difference could be that extreme.

                            this is just my humble opinion

                            MAC

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: bakeman

                              I bought my Tramontina at Tuesday Morning, thanks to reading about it here. But All-Clad makes some pieces that Tramontina doesn't - like the 3 qt saucier. I hate paying for a name, but I do love my saucier.