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Cuisinart Tri-Ply French Cookware

dcrb Nov 1, 2011 11:53 AM

Does anyone have any experience with the new/relatively new Cuisinart tri-ply cookware made in France? How does it compare with their other line of triply regarding overall weight, wall thickness, etc.

Thanks,

dcrb

  1. c
    careme_fan Nov 1, 2011 07:17 PM

    Where did you see these? Some 20+ years ago I used to have some Cuisinart pieces made in France and they were excellent (inox, tri-ply bottoms), but I gave them away because they were not induction ready. I didn't know they are available again. Thanks! -- CF

    9 Replies
    1. re: careme_fan
      dcrb Nov 1, 2011 08:15 PM

      CF, Aside from what is on their site, here is a link to their press release. That is about all I know. The price doesn't seem bad at all. And you are welcome.

      http://www.cuisinart.com/about/press/...

      1. re: dcrb
        c
        careme_fan Nov 1, 2011 11:21 PM

        Thanks dcrb! I see that Amazon has them but extra details yet ..

        (a) If my memory is correct what I had was a copper core 3 ply, this is aluminum.
        For the current version, I am not sure whether it is fully clad or just 3-ply bottoms -- I suspect the former but maybe with thinner walls. The PR blurb says that it has "Heat Surround™ Technology" whatever that means ...

        (b) No word about pouring lips, a must have in my book.

        I am sure that "field reports" will be soon available ... -- CF

        1. re: careme_fan
          dcrb Nov 2, 2011 06:05 AM

          I called Cuisinart and they stated that the pans are fully clad and somewhat heavier than than their other try-ply and have straight walls whereas the their multi-clad pro has a flare on the rim to aid in pouring. They promised to get back to me in a few days regarding the actual pan thickness in mm. For now, that is all I have. I checked Amazon and at least one hit showed a retail price in excess of $800. The Cuisinart site has them at $399.00 plus individual prices.

          1. re: dcrb
            Chemicalkinetics Nov 2, 2011 06:58 AM

            I think you two are correct. They are not the same design. Let us know if you find out the metal thickness.

            1. re: Chemicalkinetics
              dcrb Nov 2, 2011 07:08 AM

              Working on it. I don't know when I will hear back from Cuisinart but I was told I would have an answer in a few days. I cannot imagine any manufacturer introducing a second line of similar cookware without there being something substantially different. Time will tell.

              1. re: dcrb
                s
                shmulibaby Nov 3, 2011 12:14 PM

                I wonder if this means that their Multiclad-pro line will be discontinued and go on clearance soon. It would seem duplicitous to have two near identical tri-ply lines on the market, though I suppose Calphalon does. I'm surprised that the new line is thicker/heavier than the multi-clad, which I've found to be pleasantly heavy.

                1. re: shmulibaby
                  Chemicalkinetics Nov 3, 2011 12:19 PM

                  :) Yeah, Calphalon does have two triply cookware lines, doesn't it? :)

                  1. re: shmulibaby
                    b
                    blondelle Nov 3, 2011 05:27 PM

                    The tri ply lines are meant for two different markets with different price points. The Multiclad is more mass market while the French tri ply is for a more upscale market. It's thicker and may use a better grade of steel but not 100% sure of that. I think the French line is to compete with with A-C at a better price point.

                    1. re: blondelle
                      d
                      DPGood Nov 6, 2011 07:02 PM

                      Where did you get this information?

      2. dcrb Nov 6, 2011 04:46 PM

        UPDATE for those interested: The folks at Cuisinart have no data on the construction of this cookware other than it is made in France, and is try-ply. No data on pan thickness, weight, etc.

        6 Replies
        1. re: dcrb
          Chemicalkinetics Nov 6, 2011 04:48 PM

          :) Thanks.

          1. re: Chemicalkinetics
            dcrb Nov 6, 2011 06:47 PM

            You would think (or expect?) a manufacturer to have technical spec's on hand if not on their site for comparison purposes. If you build a product that is equal to or of better quality than the competition, even if it is not stated so, there should be spec's.

            1. re: dcrb
              Chemicalkinetics Nov 6, 2011 07:00 PM

              dcrb,

              I am sure the manufacturer has the specs. I think (1) either the person you contacted does not know or more likely (2) it is keeping it as secret. I think more companies than not do this. A lot of the thickness specs which you read for All Clad are estimated by people. All Clad, itself, has not released these data. Same for Calphalon and Tramontina.

              1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                dcrb Nov 6, 2011 07:55 PM

                Chem,

                Good point. Next time I am out prowling around Tucson or Phoenix, I'm taking a thickness gauge with me.

                1. re: dcrb
                  kaleokahu Nov 6, 2011 08:35 PM

                  Hi, dcrb:

                  Good luck--miking the pan isn't going to tell you much in terms of what the individual layer thicknesses are. If you know the thicknesses of 2 layers of tri-ply, though...

                  Aloha,
                  Kaleo

                  1. re: kaleokahu
                    dcrb Nov 6, 2011 09:38 PM

                    It will tell me what I want to know. No more, no less. And no guesswork.

        2. r
          RGC1982 Nov 10, 2011 03:00 PM

          Does anyone know what kind of lids it has? I can't tell from the pictures on the Bed Bed & Beyond website if they are stainless steel, or glass.

          3 Replies
          1. re: RGC1982
            dcrb Nov 10, 2011 05:56 PM

            Most of the sites I looked at stated steel lids. Here is a site offering a good picture, as well as what is an extra piece. I hope this helps.

            http://www1.bloomingdales.com/shop/pr...

            1. re: RGC1982
              dcrb Nov 10, 2011 07:18 PM

              Not that I am a big fan of shopping shows but here is a video:

              http://www.shopnbc.com/Cuisinart_10_P...

              1. re: dcrb
                dcrb Nov 10, 2011 07:30 PM

                Truly painful to watch the demo.

            2. e
              Emmyos Nov 30, 2011 07:45 AM

              I just ordered these from Bed Bath and Beyond for an 11 piece set for $299.00 plus free shipping. I was looking for a stainless steel set not made in China and though All-Clad was my first choice I just couldn't justify spending that kind of money. They look lovely and two people on Amazon gave them stellar reviews. I will post a review as soon as I get them if anyone is interested.
              http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/produ...

              9 Replies
              1. re: Emmyos
                dcrb Nov 30, 2011 10:49 AM

                Thanks!

                1. re: Emmyos
                  dcrb Dec 20, 2011 05:17 PM

                  Emmyos, Have you received the pans and if so, how are they?

                  1. re: dcrb
                    e
                    Emmyos Dec 20, 2011 05:32 PM

                    Yes, they came in BUT I am getting them for Christmas so I haven't seen them yet...a few more days...lol. My husband opened the box and checked each pot and lid and said they are actually stunning. He said they were really beautiful so that's a plus. I will let you know as soon as I cook my first meal Christmas morning :)

                    1. re: Emmyos
                      dcrb Dec 20, 2011 07:10 PM

                      Sounds good. Someone else on this site is also looking for info/hands on with the cookware. Looking forward to reading your post. Enjoy Christmas.

                      1. re: dcrb
                        g
                        gotsmack Dec 20, 2011 08:00 PM

                        Thanks for bumping this thread. I would not have seen it otherwise. I am also thinking about buying the set from bed bath and beyond.

                        What I don't get is how this can be of any quality when it is made in France where they have high labor costs and then charge Chinese made cookware prices (not that the Chinese can't make high grade cookware, it's just that no firm would commission them to, at this time).

                        Their price point is about 1/3 lower than All Clad tri-ply, so even if Cuisinart is willing to accept a much lower profit margin there is no way the material quality can be equal to all clad.

                        1. re: gotsmack
                          dcrb Dec 20, 2011 09:00 PM

                          Cuisinart has always given a lot of bang for the buck. In many cases, quality is as good as and sometimes better than the other guys, dollar for dollar. They also offer a better warranty on electrics than most manufacturers.

                          I don't know how they arrive at prices. Maybe a long term contract with a promise to not change designs for a given number of years and a guaranteed number of units to purchase. It could be a variety of reasons. The bottom line is if it is of good quality and gives good results, it is a bargain. If it is a poor performer, one can always exercise their rights for a refund. Time will tell.

                          1. re: dcrb
                            s
                            SamVee Dec 20, 2011 09:29 PM

                            Sounds good to me.

                  2. re: Emmyos
                    n
                    nezzie Feb 29, 2012 06:14 PM

                    Emmyos, I'd LOVE to know how you like them. I am also looking for a set NOT made in China!
                    I didn't know Bed, Bath & Beyond carries them but I will check out their website. THANKS SO MUCH.

                    1. re: nezzie
                      e
                      Emmyos Feb 29, 2012 06:44 PM

                      My review is below. Just scroll down. The set is amazing!!! 2 solid months of cooking and they are SO worth every penny. They are actually BETTER than I thought they would be.

                  3. g
                    gotsmack Dec 22, 2011 05:01 PM

                    I just got back from Bed Bath & Beyond, where I spent 45 minutes looking at cookware, comparing the French Classic line against other cookware they had on display.

                    If you buy $299 worth of the French Classic line, BB&B will give you a free 10" crepe pan and splatter shield, via mail in rebate. Offer expires in March. If you want to cash in on this with a 20% off coupon, plan to buy an extra piece or two.

                    Here are my observations on the 8" skillet:

                    1. The aluminum layer is pretty thick, almost as thick as the all-clad. When I matched up the two lips the all clad felt a little thicker as it caught my fingernail when I ran it across the two skillets.

                    2. The pieces have 2 types of finish in the same piece. Brushed on the inside & outside bottom and mirror on the inside & outside sides. The mirror finish looks like crap when it gets scratched. I know this because some of the demo pieces were scratched on the mirror finish. I would have preferred to have all brushed finish

                    3. The bottom of the 8" skillet on the outside had what looked like a rough patch on the brushed finish, but it didn't feel different when I ran my finger over it, but you can definitely tell it is there in the light. I only noticed this on one piece on display. The other pieces in the demo set did not have this.

                    4. The inside of at least 8" skillet and the 5.5 qt saute pan had what looked like two areas close together where someone pressed their fingers into the metal. The metal did not feel like it had a depression, but it looked like it did. I don't know if this is from someone's skin oil when they touched the pans or something being wrong with the pan.

                    5. There were dents in the exposed aluminum on the rim and in the rivets. Like when you press your fingernail into cold butter. I looked at other tri-ply pieces on display and did not notice this on other brands/lines.

                    6. The handle was very comfortable and even had a indentation for your thumb

                    Conclusion: Made in France is only a showy gimmick. In the 8" Skillet you can either buy the French Classic line for $50 or any other brand tri-ply that is made in China but with a better finish for $30. The finish on the French Classic pots and pans will look like crap after a short while of normal use. Any abuse you put into the pots or pans will be visible immediately, unlike other cheaper lines/brands where it kind of blends in.

                    I really wanted to like the French Classic line and was determined to buy the 8" skillet, but walked away empty handed. I would rather have All-Clad factory seconds.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: gotsmack
                      dcrb Dec 22, 2011 06:08 PM

                      Thanks for the review. Seems pretty thorough. I agree with the oily finger prints. Mirror finishes to get scratched over time and I have never expected any pan to look new for very long. I do appreciate your information. I may get out in the next few weeks and have a chance to get to a BB&B. I don't get to the big city but every few months. Thanks again.

                      1. re: dcrb
                        e
                        Emmyos Dec 26, 2011 05:18 AM

                        Just got this set for Christmas and all I can say is WOW!!! This cookware is just beautiful. It is heavy and extremely well made in my opinion. There were no visible imperfections anywhere and I looked these pieces over with a microscope...lol. They are all level and sit on my stove evenly. The aluminum layer is thick and as the previous poster wrote there are two finishes brushed and mirror. I actually like the mirror finish. A little Barkeepers Friend and I'm good to go. They heat evenly and cook like a dream. The lids are all interchangeable and the steamer is a great added asset. . Really great set, cooks evenly, and an effortless clean up. I know the previous poster said made is France was a gimmick but gimmick or not I did NOT want a Chinese import. I believe for the $299 price tag I got an incredible bargain and a quality set of pots and pans. So I give this purchase an A.

                        1. re: Emmyos
                          dcrb Dec 26, 2011 08:02 AM

                          Glad to hear that your set is good without imperfections. So I take it that this cookware is a good buy or a very good buy and the quality is great. Thanks for the followup.

                      2. re: gotsmack
                        p
                        plainv70 Jan 13, 2012 08:19 AM

                        I saw this cookware recently in Bloomingdales. The defects you describe read more like shipping and handling damage or smudging than production defects. The pots and pans that I saw at Bloomingdales were very clean with no damage. The stainless steel cladding was nicely polished; maybe not as evenly polished as the All-Clad, but not unsightly.

                        Notable about these pots is the thickness of the aluminum layer. I did not have a micrometer with me ;) however, they appeared to be of heavier gauge metal than anything I saw on the all-clad table except for some MCP samples--which I think cook as well or better than their other laminates. If I had to guess they were at least 2-3mm thick. Yes, 2-3mm. Their weight reflects their thickness.

                        I have All-Clad and Tramontina Tri-ply cookware. I like the MCP best, All-Clad Stainless tri-ply is thinner than the MCP and, in my opinion, does not cook as evenly. The Tramontina cooks similar to the Stainless tri-ply, as should be expected, however, the quality of their stainless steel is not as high as the All-clad. It is supposed to be 18-10, too, but stains easier than the All-Clad--nothing that some Barkeepers friend can't cleanup. I did not see anything which would indicate that the finish on the French Classic pots and pans would "look like crap after a short while of normal use" and, besides, how could one tell just by looking at them.

                        If I did not already have a full complement of pots and pans, I would buy the Cuisinart French Classic in a NY minute. Even at regular retail, they appear to be a very good deal; if/when they go on sale, I see myself caving...

                        Sidebar: I have a mix of All-Clad pots & pans of various ages. The newer ones appear to be thinner than the older ones. My newest stainless tri-ply skillet is one of the thinnest and telegraphs all the unevenness of the gas flame on my low end stove. This is where the mass of the pot comes into play: the more metal, the better the result and why I think my MCP pans cook better that their tri-ply brethren--and would expect the Cuisinart to outperform the All-Clad stainless tri-ply. Yes, you read that right: the heavier Cuisinart pots and pans should outperform their All-Clad competition. This also highlights the farce that high end cookware has become; one stainless layer (non-reactive, easy cleaning, rust free, etc) and one substantial heat holding and transfer layer is all that is required. All the others are cosmetic or marketing tools. One can argue the relative thermodynamic merits of the different metals until the sun sets, but if a pan is thick enough and evenly constructed, the difference is just how efficiently it uses its heat source.

                        I also have one all copper pot (tinned), 2mm, and it is without question the best. If I could afford it, I'd dump all the others and replace them with all copper cookware--but then, wouldn't we all :)

                        1. re: plainv70
                          dcrb Jan 13, 2012 06:53 PM

                          Thanks for the review. After the holidays, I traveled the 90+ miles to the city to do some shopping. Stopped in the BB&B and no French Classic. No MC Pro. There were some pot bellied looking Cuisinart pots, plus the usual Calphalon, All Clad and the like. Went to a whole foods store for VitaMix fodder, and headed home. Not a wasted trip. It is nice to get out once in a while.

                      3. m
                        Miss Priss Dec 26, 2011 06:04 AM

                        From the links posted in this thread, it looks to me as if the Bloomingdale's set has metal lids while the BB&B set has glass lids. Can someone who's seen this line in person tell me if that's really the case? Thanks.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: Miss Priss
                          e
                          Emmyos Dec 26, 2011 06:16 AM

                          My set came from BB&B and it has glass lids.

                          1. re: Emmyos
                            m
                            Miss Priss Dec 26, 2011 11:07 AM

                            Thank you, Emmyos!

                          2. re: Miss Priss
                            n
                            Nutmegger1 Jun 5, 2012 07:57 PM

                            Every vendor except BBB sells FCT with metal lids. In fact, the Cuisinart website touts metal lids as an outstanding product feature of its FCT line. My FCT pots, purchased at Home Goods, have metal lids. Moreover, they are completely brushed stainless on the inside, not mirror-finished on the interior walls as described by an earlier poster who checked out FCT at BBB and decided against it. BBB is offering an 11 piece set for $299 while a 10 piece set on both Amazon and Zappo's is $399. Draw your own conclusion, but I wonder if BBB had Cuisinart make a line of FCT especially for them. My two FCT pots are very similar in heft, color and finish to my All-Clad. FCT's tri-ply is marginally thinner than All-Clad's, but the lids fit as tightly, the stainless is as bright and easy to clean, and the finishing is as smooth as my All-Clad pots.

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