What's the best mid-range American-made cookware?
I have been looking to replace my 25 year old cookware and would like to find a decent set that is made in the US.
Any help out there?
I would suggest you not go for a set and match different types of cookware to various forms of cooking. Clad stainless steel like All-clad is good for sauteeing and finishing in the oven, so i would suggest a good size, 3- or 4-quart saute pan. I would also suggest looking at a cast iron piece or 2. If you season them well (it's not that hard), you might be able to omit a non-stick pan. You might also consider a le creuset or less expensive alternative for braising. Other than that, you'll need some smaller sauce pans and maybe a stock pot, but you don't have to spend a lot of money on them. All-clad is made in the u.s., as are several cast irons, like Lodge.
btw, what kind of cooking do you do and for how many people usually?
I love my AllClad MC2, but I would not spend the money on AC's sauce pans and other pots that are typically used for boiling liquids as they are unnecessary. Invest in the fry and sauté pans, and buy the sauce pans from Revereware, or purchase good quality heavy stainless from a restaurant supply house.
I would also recommend that you buy inexpensive aluminum Teflon pans, as even the AC Excalibur finish wont last more then a few years and it will be considerably less if you put them in a dishwasher.
WearEver and Vollrath are the preferred names for the restaurant supply pieces.
As mentioned WearEver is a go to for many restaurants...I would start at a busy/established restauarant supply store , instead of some big box like Bed,Bath, and Beyond.
Ask questions , handle the offerings....decide on what you are going to need/use the most.... a la carte.....instead of a box set...
The above also depends on whether you want your next set/collection to last another 25 years......shopping a la carte will afford you the opportunity to spend more on a given item that you will find yourself using more, or a specialty pan/pot......and less on an item used not as frequently...
One problem is figuring out what's American-made. Because some pieces from a company are made in the U.S. doesn't mean they all are. And what's American-made one month may change six months later. Globalization and all.
Revereware (http://www.revereware.com/) is very, very good and used to be made in the U.S. I think (I'm not entirely sure) that they're now producing in the US, Canada, and Asia, but the company is still based in the US.
There's another thread on the brand here: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/423601
Is there a specific reason why you're looking for American-made cookware?