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Le Creuset Tri-Ply Stainless Steel 8-Piece Set $99 at Costco!

k
kimchee411 Nov 4, 2010 09:18 PM

Fully clad, aluminum core, riveted handles. Very heavy and sturdy. Sells on Amazon for $379.

http://www.amazon.com/Creuset-3-Ply-S...

8" non-stick omelette pan
9.5" fry pan
2qt. Saucepan w/lid
3qt. Saucepan w/lid
7.5qt. Stockpot w/lid (lid also fits the fry pan

)

I was at my local Costco today (Hayward, CA on Hesperian) and saw it for $99.97 so I snagged up three sets! Yes, LC SS is made in China, not France, but at that price, with those features, and with Costco's return policy, how can you go wrong? Most reviews on Amazon for LC SS are very favorable.

  1. v
    vic383 Nov 25, 2010 02:27 PM

    I looked and none here in FL. :-(

    1. s
      sparkyr Nov 8, 2010 04:18 PM

      Actually, they are just out of the product.... You wouldn't consider giving up one of those sets to someone in the bay area?

      1. s
        sparkyr Nov 8, 2010 04:11 PM

        There is no record of that item at Costco at Hayward.... Do you have an item number that you could provide?

        3 Replies
        1. re: sparkyr
          grnidkjun Nov 9, 2010 05:52 AM

          I bet that deal sold out fast everywhere. I'd snatch one up if I saw it.. I don't need it.. but would have it for a super nice gift.

          1. re: sparkyr
            l
            LuckyCharm Nov 30, 2010 10:19 PM

            Prices that end in 7 are for items that are being discontinued and have been clearanced. If you look down the current Christmas aisles, you'll see a couple toys that end in 7. Also, in the upper right hand corner of the price tag, if you see a star, that means that the item is limited stock--either it is being discontinued, or was a limited stock item that isn't being replenished once it is sold out.

            I'd go to membership, ask them to do an IAI (Item Alpha Inquiry), and search for Le Creuset. Make sure they're spelling it correctly; IAI will bring up items that they had at one time, even if they currently do not.

            1. re: LuckyCharm
              w
              will47 Nov 30, 2010 10:55 PM

              I checked a couple weeks ago, and there were still a few at Hayward, but none in Southern California. Actually, statewide, only a few stores had it. I saw some going for $250-300 on Ebay though.... probably people who bought them at Costco.

          2. m
            mikie Nov 6, 2010 05:19 AM

            From a marketing stand point, I'm not sure I understand what path LC is going down. They have a more that steller reputation of very high quality enameled cast iron cookware made in France. A good reputation is a very valuable thing in the marketplace. How many of you buy LC dutch ovens because of that reputation? Most I would assume. So why would they dilute the brand with ceramic cookware made in Tieland or Indonesia to compete with the French made EH and a ss line of pots and pans made in China to compete with, well whoever is in that price range? Having products made in China and other parts of the Pacific Rim does nothing to enhance the image of quality and the reputation and brand recognition LC has in the marketplace. Look what happened to Kitchen Aid when their mixers were no longer made in the USA, jsut assembled in the USA, their reputation has declined considerably and now most on this board sugest you look for a used one that's over 20 years old to get quality. It would seem when you have a position in the market that LC has where they can charge a premium for their products, they would want to maintain that position and only add products that would be of the highest standards. If LC started making their enameled cast iron in China would you still be as loyal to the brand and rush out to purchase new pieces, I know I wouldn't. Just scratching my head over this one.

            13 Replies
            1. re: mikie
              b
              blondelle Nov 6, 2010 05:48 AM

              Mikie, you make some good points but you have the realize that France isn't known for their stainless. Maybe they don't have the facilities to make it there. They do have the iron foundaries which is why their enameled iron is made in France. Staub does make it's stoneware in France but maybe LC doesn't have the facilities. Even though it's made in Thailand it's great quality. China has gotten a bad name for shoddy merchandise but it's just a location. Companies specify how they want their products made and to what standard and I'm sure they make sure it's made to that particular standard and checked with their quality control. It's gorgeous, heavyweight stuff.

              No, it doesn't have the cachet of something made in France and I'm a bit upset that they are still charging more for their other items that don't have that cachet. They are hoping their reputation for quality will carry them over and as long as the quality doesn't suffer I'm fine with it. Not sure where their silicone items are made. I guess they are just manufacturing in the best place for each, but they aren't lowering their prices accordingly. They can't, as they need to keep the pricing at consistent levels for a prestige brand.

              1. re: blondelle
                Chemicalkinetics Nov 6, 2010 05:57 AM

                Which is where Tramontina triply stainless steel cookware comes in. We have numerous posts here about Tramontina. So far I have yet to read a single bad review for Tramontina stainless steel cookware from people who own them. Not one.

                1. re: blondelle
                  m
                  mikie Nov 6, 2010 06:09 AM

                  blondelle, "China has gotten a bad name for shoddy merchandise but it's just a location. Companies specify how they want their products made and to what standard and I'm sure they make sure it's made to that particular standard and checked with their quality control."

                  Unfortunately it's not just a location and although you are correct companies specify how and from what they want things made, I personally know of many instances where this doesn't happen. I'm in an international business, we sell all over the world, and our customers take a huge risk when they have items made in China, as they do not always use what is approved and specified. There are many instances of US companies with good reputations moving production to China and not changing prices but the quality has a significant drop. And in many cases these companies send people over to China to oversee production, doesn't seem to change the mentality though. Hopefully LC knows what their doing, I'd hate to see a great brand move production to China and try to live on their past reputation. Some US companies have found false economy by manufacturingin China and have brought some products back to the US and Canada. If Emile Hennri can make ceramic cookware in France, I don't understand why LC can't. There are many good brands from France, Apilco, Pillivuyt, etc. there must be factories in France that could make the ceramic for LC. Although France is more known for copper cookware, they have some ss lines and Belgium isn't that far away and they have ss cookware manufacture.

                  It just looks like they are riding the coat tails of the French made cast iron and sticking the extra money from China manufacture in their pockets. Something I would expect from most US companies, because that's what most have done.

                  1. re: mikie
                    b
                    blondelle Nov 6, 2010 07:14 AM

                    << It just looks like they are riding the coat tails of the French made cast iron and sticking the extra money from China manufacture in their pockets. >>

                    If LC's cast iron prices are high they can't suddenly sell cheap stoneware. Pricing is about marketing more than product costs. A companies product pricing has to be consistent across all their lines. People expect to pay a premium for LC, and they can't sell other lines with that name at much lower prices.

                    1. re: blondelle
                      m
                      mikie Nov 6, 2010 09:38 AM

                      I agree, they shouldn't sell cheap stoneware. So why would they take the chance of runing their expensive, high quality reputation that they built over many decades, by making products outside of France? When you talk of a companies reputation you are talking about real and percieved values. I see value in LC's quality, I also see value in their French tradition of manufacturing, you can't seperate those. And by making these items in China or where ever outside the EU, they dilute their high end reputation. I don't think companies like Heinkels did themselves a favor by diluting their brand by making knives outside of Germany. It's not a dig at LC, it's any company that has a reputation and then does this sort of thing.

                    2. re: mikie
                      hobbybaker Nov 6, 2010 06:09 PM

                      LC rolled out White Porcelain product line in the UK, which has not yet arrived US, i guess. I did not find any info where it is made. hopefully made in France, but it says 5 year guarantee so might not be made in France.

                      http://www.lecreuset.co.uk/Product-Ra...

                      1. re: hobbybaker
                        grnidkjun Nov 9, 2010 05:51 AM

                        I'm not sure, but the pieces of ceramic/stoneware pie and casserole dishes I have are made in Thailand.. I'd imagine these are as well.

                  2. re: mikie
                    Jay F Nov 6, 2010 08:19 AM

                    I could not agree more. Perfect expression of the LC situation, Mikie.

                    As for Kitchen Aid (among others), I didn't buy a stand mixer last year, when I was doing lots of baking, because unless you spend $2000 (for a current model Hobart IIRC), none of them seems to be built to last more than 90 days. I wanted to buy one in the worst way, but I hate having to replace things that should be built to last a lifetime.

                    1. re: Jay F
                      Sue in Mt P Nov 6, 2010 02:22 PM

                      There's a LC factory in Walterboro, SC. I know somebody who knows somebody who works there. Word is they have seconds sales twice a year but you have to actually know somebody to go, which I don't now but I WILL!. :D

                      1. re: Jay F
                        hobbybaker Nov 6, 2010 06:15 PM

                        Maybe, finding an older kitchen Aid at garage sale or estate sale might be a better deal than buying a new one. I heard the older one has less issue than the new one.

                        1. re: Jay F
                          t
                          Tripper Nov 6, 2010 06:26 PM

                          My Kitchen Aid stand mixer is 25 years old and never had an issue.

                          1. re: Tripper
                            hobbybaker Nov 6, 2010 06:28 PM

                            see. Yours are made in a good old time when all those things were built to last. I would take a look at estate sales for Kitchen Aid stand mixier...

                            1. re: Tripper
                              Jay F Nov 7, 2010 07:23 AM

                              hobbybaker: "finding an older kitchen Aid at garage sale or estate sale might be a better deal than buying a new one. I heard the older one has less issue than the new one."

                              Tripper: "My Kitchen Aid stand mixer is 25 years old and never had an issue."

                              The older ones are best, from what I understand. I had one twenty plus years ago, and it did everything. It never occured to me it would ever die, the way the new, non-Hobart ones seem to do.

                        2. hobbybaker Nov 4, 2010 09:37 PM

                          I saw their SS chef's pan in person and am impressed by the quality of SS line even though they are made in China. I noticed their roasting pan also looks very solid quality as induction capable pan. LC must have had a hard time to sell the SS line, despite the quality, in the US judging from this kind of deal! Anyway, congratulation on the new sets.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: hobbybaker
                            Jay F Nov 5, 2010 02:48 PM

                            hobbybaker: "LC must have had a hard time to sell the SS line, despite the quality, in the US judging from this kind of deal!"

                            Let Le Creuset stick to enameled cast iron, All Clad to SS, Calphalon to anodized aluminum. And never those twains shall meet.

                            1. re: Jay F
                              b
                              blondelle Nov 5, 2010 04:00 PM

                              LC changed their design on their stainless. The sale price is their older design which is why it's greatly reduced. It's great cookware, but the new design is a bit prettier I think. It's an awesome price as it's great, heavy weight, premium quality cookware that should last a lifetime.

                              1. re: blondelle
                                hobbybaker Nov 5, 2010 04:28 PM

                                Thanks, our LC VP of marketing:) so, please tell me if the new SS design is also still made in China? If it is made in somewhere else in Europe, it can be more competitive, with better image at least, against higher lines of SS including AC, i guess. Hope thay will get a good tie up with Williams-sonoma or Sur La Table to make the new design more successful. I know you can answer all of these questions:) (Joking!)

                              2. re: Jay F
                                hobbybaker Nov 5, 2010 04:08 PM

                                I have nothing agaist LC SS line. It is a good quality product so kind of mixed feeling to see they shed this whatever the old model is.

                                I already have AC ss pots and pans so I am not that much interested in LC's SS line personally except a raosting pan because AC's rosting pans are not induction ready.

                                I generally don't like made in China and avoid as much as my wallet allows me to do so but the LC SS's quality was really superb and just beautiful. (Also, their handle is much more reasonable than AC SS's handle although I do not hate it as much as other people hate it. It is just OK to me.)

                                I think either LC's roasting pan or Mauviel M'cook line's roasting pan (five-ply) is the best at this point of 2010 to me if the pan needs to be SS induction ready. I still love my calphalon contemporary roasting pan which Cooks Ilustrated recommended and also made in China, I guess, but it is not usable on induction range. My future apartment, next year, is induction so I am wondering to buy the appropriate roasting pan on the range direcly to make gravy.

                            2. Chemicalkinetics Nov 4, 2010 09:33 PM

                              That is even cheaper than Tramontina. That said, thie Le Creuset set is on sale. If not, the Tramontina set is still cheaper.

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