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Feb 1, 2011 06:56 PM

First cookware set - looking for advice - Paderno, Cusinart, Henckels??????

Hi all,

Looking for some advice on my first cookware set. Being very brief, i am in my mid 20's and will be moving into my first place this August. With that being said, i have started to slowly collect my "house stuff"

AS for cookware i would like a set to keep long term, so far i have a few sets in mind, here is my list (in no particular order)

1. Paderno fusion 5 - 11 pc set - ($350)

2. Cuisinart Cookware Set - 12 Piece MultiClad Pro Stainless Steel Cookware - ($240)

3. Cuisinart Classic Cookware Set - 10 pc ($200)

4. Henckel rapture 10 pc set ($200)

My price range is anywhere between $200 and $350 - although i love seeing sets which are regular $1000 reduced by 70% etc.!! :)

I also have the option of waiting if anyone knows of a good sale or oppertunity coming up??

I would really appreciate any advice, thank you in advance!!!!

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  1. 'i have started to slowly collect my "house stuff"'

    Try collect them even slower. Try buying one piece at a time instead of a set. The only exception to this is probably the Tramontina set because it is so ridiculously inexpensive. Other than that, it is best to buy one at a time. Avoid set.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

      Agree 100 percent! Collect pieces that are best for the task. If you buy a piece and cook with it you can see if you like it-the way it cooks, how the handle is to hold etc. Sometimes you can find "try me" pieces at a very reasonable cost. Places like TJ Maxx and Tuesday Morning also have deals on cookware. I like older pieces that I have gotten second hand like cast iron skillets. The older ones often have much smoother cooking surfaces than newer ones. I have also bought several pieces of Le Creuset in brand new condition for almost nothing. Read this forum for a real education in all types of cookware and all kinds of opinions. As you read, you may ask yourself, "Should I buy stuff made in China?" or "What is the best non stick pan?" As you cook/bake more and more, you get an idea of what you need. The "collecting" process is fun and as you learn you can add to your collection.

      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        I agree 100% too. I think it's a much better idea to acquire better cookware piece by piece over time than to buy a set.

        Cookware and More sells AllClad at highly discounted prices. That's my go-to advice to anyone trying to assemble their cookware.

        I would recommend buying cookware from cookware manufactures and not, for example, knife manufacturers

      2. I've have good luck with the Tramontina pans that Wal-mart sells.. I have 2 of their saucepans. They are try-ply with aluminum cores. Very reasonably priced and reviewed well against All-Clad.

        As for sets, I've sort of picked up pans as a I found needs for them..

        Find a restaurant supply store nearby... and have you found a chef's knife you like? That might be the first thing I'd buy for a new starter household..

        1. I totally agree with the advice here. Sets usually have some pieces that just won't be that useful to you (for me, it is those little frying pans). You really should buy a great big enamelled over cast iron Dutch oven, such as what Le Creuset or Staub make. Then some every day stuff. I have some pieces of All Clad that I really enjoy using: skillets, big pots for boiling water for pasta, small saucepans. And I have some Lodge cast iron for making cornbread and such. Then over time if you get into specialty cooking, you can add accordingly. For example, I have a 20 gallon stock pot that I bought in a restaurant supply shop that I use a lot for making stocks (which I do regularly), and occasionally for making preserves when the summer fruit is exceptional. I bought a lot of my stuff at a Williams-Sonoma outlet for not much cost.

          1. You might want to look at Regalware. Made in the US, and very affordable too. A 10-piece set is sold for $280 (from $840 MSRP) here.

            I don't have any experience with this set but I'd love to include at least one piece in my kitchen. I wish I discovered these guys sooner. Right now I really don't need another pan. Maybe a 8" stainless skillet, which I don't really need, and that's about it. But the fact that is also selling them with the other big boys says a lot to me. If I finally decide to get my 8" skillet, I'll definitely get a Regalware to try out.

            I have had very good luck with Black Friday weekend sales at the Williams-sonoma outlet for the past several years. All my all-clad and staub stuff came from the outlet during the sales. I don't know how things will change as the economy gets better. The sale this past season wasn't as fun as the previous ones.

            1. Not sure where you live - suspect Canada because of the Paderno choice. It is not that available in the US as All Clad seems to be the designer equivalent of choice.

              I can relate to the confusion so I asked a friend who is a Metallurgist for an opinion.
              Allot of different manufacturers put their own spin on a product to compete for the same market.
              At a certain price point, it eventually just comes down to what feels right in your hand, weight, type of heat source and how serious you are about cooking.

              One pot at a time, I tried Lagostina, Calphalon and even eyed All Clad and Le Creuset.
              After allot of research, I made a decision to simply go with the full 11 piece Paderno Paradigm from Home Hardware on sale @ $199 (incl one non-stick pan).
              Features that I like: glass lids with vent holes (rare boilover), heavy bottoms, even heat, set fits on 1 shelf, respectable warranty and locally made. I have no regrets at all for that pricepoint.

              I choose NOT to put them in the dishwasher as that would dull the outer finish but they are super easy to clean inside with ScotchBrite if needed.

              If really want to visually compare high end pots, Williams Sonoma has a great display.

              Good Luck Choosing!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Researchpro

                Hi and thank you all for the replies so far, i live in Toronto, Canada and was thinking of buying my cookware from Kitchen stuff plus, they seem to have the best prices