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May 28, 2009 08:42 AM

llecellier villedieu copper cookware

I have the opportunity to purchase a 5 piece set with lids of llecellier villedieu tin lined hand-hammered copper cookware for under $200. I'm not familiar with this brand. Anyone know if this is a good deal?

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  1. It sounds way too cheap to be of any good quality. Most decent copper cookware is at last several hundred dollars for each piece, and that may not include the cover. Sounds like you are looking at what some manufacturers call "tableware" or "serveware". They are not intended for cooking but for serving. Even Mauviel has a tableware line with thiner copper than their cookware. It says not to cook in these items right in the description.

    4 Replies
    1. re: RGC1982

      I know. They originally sold for around $1000 but that doesn't necessarily mean the quality is good. I've not heard of that brand before. Someone is selling them coz they need the money now. I've not actually seen them but before making the trip thought I'd like to get others' opinions. If, in fact, they prove to be the "real deal" it sounds like a good buy.

      1. re: RGC1982

        It is quite possible to cook in lightweight copperware like Mauviel's "Pour la table" line, but it doesn't give you the very steady even heat of heavy copperware, and lighter weight frypans are more likely to warp over time. Most of the copper cookware that's out there is of similar weight. We had a set of pieces like this growing up, and while it's not the best thing available, it's certainly not useless. You have to pay more attention to it while it's on the flame, but it's fine for things that aren't likely to burn, like a pot of boiling water for pasta or blanching vegetables or for gratin pans and casseroles that aren't used on the stovetop.

        I've seen second hand Lecellier copperware for sale, but I haven't had a chance to look at it up close. At least some of the copperware imported under the "BIA Cordon Bleu" brand, which seems to be considered of good quality, was made by Lecellier, so it's worth looking into. Measure the thickness of the copper, and that will tell you what you need to know. It should be at least 2.5mm thick ideally, at least 2mm for a frypan or a stockpot up to about 12 quarts. 3mm or more is even better, particularly for a saute pan, rondeau, saucepan, or a very large stockpot. Gratin pans and casseroles that aren't meant for stovetop use can be thinner.

        If you can't measure the thickness of the copper, weigh it. A saucepan of around 2 quarts should weigh around 5 lbs. A deep 10" saute pan should weigh around 8 lbs.

        1. re: David A. Goldfarb

          That's good to know -- because I have been reading here for a long time that you are not supposed to cook in the light weight table wear from Mauviel. It makes sense that you can because of their reputation.

          That said, if the OP's set really started out at $1000, it may be a good deal. Everything does not have to be Falk or Mauviel to be useful I have never run into that brand before, and all I could interpret was the low price. I was afraid that you looking at the horrendously thin stuff made in China that is intended to be strictly decorative.

          My advice: If you can spare $200 and won't kick yourself if you don't like the pans, go for it. They will move well at garage sales if you don't put them in the dishwasher and keep them shiny if they don't work out for you. $200 is less than what many cooks spend on one pan.

        2. re: RGC1982

          williams - sonoma used to sell this brand, the Villedieu. i don't know if they still do. it is very high quality cookware.

        3. I googled llecellier villedieu after reading your post. I didn't find a lot of helpful information in English, but there are a lot of hits in French. If you don't speak/read French, perhaps a French chef in your city may be able to answer your questions.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sherri

            There isn't too much on the net, but it's "Lecellier" with one L at the beginning.