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All-Clad Stainless Redesign

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Is anyone else underwhelmed by the redesigned All-Clad stainless steel cookware? I have owned and used their SS cookware for years and I love it. The redesign however does not impress me: the handles are now bulky and the logo and pot size on the bottom of each pot is a bad idea. This is not what I want to see when I hang pots from a pot rack.

I have no doubt that the quality of the pots and pans will be as high as they have always been. But what was once sleek and sophisticated is now clunky. Call me a luddite.

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  1. I don't hang my pots and I'm not buying them so they look pretty hanging up. I really like the new handles, especially on the lids of the D5. I like the size labels too.

    by the way, it's luddite.

    1 Reply
    1. re: rasputina

      From what I've read, a lot of people do like the new handle. I'm just not one of them. Ideally, AC would have kept the classic design and also offered the 2011 design. But they didn't ask me.

      Thanks for catching the typo.

    2. Well, like you said, a lot of people hate the original handle. In addition, the new design also has flared rim, I think.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        Here's an overview of the differences in the new design:

        http://www.allclad-stainless.com/over...

        1. re: taos

          Thanks Taos.

          1. re: taos

            If they designed their handles to be more user friendly then that's a great thing.

        2. Several years ago we looked at the Ac and disliked it because of the stick handles. While I understand they may have been designed in such a way as to permit flipping of food as well as passing over the tops of adjoining pots/pan, we did not like them and bought cookware with a curve in the handle, deeming it more ergonomic (for us). The new AC has handles that are supposedly more comfortable. And I suppose compared to the older style, they are but in my opinion, only marginally so. We have the ACd5 6 qt deep sauté. Love the pan, still hate the handles. As far as the logo and such, well, I reckon it had to go somewhere.

          5 Replies
          1. re: dcrb

            The company name has always been at the base of the handle. Simple, subtle. The addition of an engraved logo on the bottom of the pan is, quite frankly, ugly. Nor is it terribly useful. Who can't tell the difference between a 4 quart and a 3 quart pan on sight? As for the size of the handles, I guess it's a matter of personal preference, as with knives. And I guess I just have smaller hands: I've never had a problem with the handles.

            1. re: paulcooks

              My only complaint about the AC is the perceived balance of the pan with the handles at their current angle. As I said, this angle may have been by design to aid in flipping food; but the balance is not terrific. That is my perception based solely on the fact that I don't like it. In a large store, there are many pans to choose from, Choosing several of similar size and weight (assuming the quality and composition are close, some are simply more comfortable to handle than others and feel more comfortable in the hand.

              The company probably realized that a lot of folks display their wares on pot racks and made a conscious decision to make sure their pans were recognizable. They may have done this for marketing reasons. Who knows? I agree with the size markings. One should always choose a pan to fit the job, regardless of what it says on the pan. Interior measurement markings are becoming popular. Not sure why. AC has a good site for feed back and are responsive to concerns and criticisms as well as ideas for product improvement. Maybe they can shed some light on this.

              1. re: paulcooks

                " As for the size of the handles, I guess it's a matter of personal preference"

                Definitely, but don't forget this is a business, and I would argue more people dislike All Clad original handle design than like it, so it makes good business sense.

                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  But does it make sense to alienate current customers in your quest for new customers?

                  1. re: paulcooks

                    Absolutely. Unfortunately, this is always part of any business decisions. You are trying to make a net gain. Now, I am not saying that All Clad has achieved a net gain. Yes, many people like All Clad new handle design, but that does not mean people who like the handle will buy more All Clad. I think dcrb reflects this point very well. dcrb wrote "The new AC has handles that are supposedly more comfortable. And I suppose compared to the older style, they are but in my opinion, only marginally so." This could very well means that people like it, but may not like it enough to convince them to buy All Clad. So it is a tough act for balancing.

                    As for your alienating comment, that is always true for any change. When ever we make a change, someone don't like someonthing. That is just the nature. The only way to not alienate any current customers is to never make changes, but that has its own problem.

            2. I think All-Clad really hurt their brand with all these redesigns. They were always able to sell their original line at a premium with hardly any discounts except for the promo pieces. Then came the d5 and the original line was steeply discounted. The d5 as far as I can see was never rolled out to all their markets. Then came the redesign of the original line. After their customer bought the original line at steep discounts does A-C really think they are in the mood to pay 3x-4x as much for a minimal design change? What they did is confuse their customers and basically tell them their original line wasn't as good as it was once thought. They are also less likely to invest at full price in a new line when A-C changes them at the drop of a hat, and they then see the 'new' line steeply discounted when they change them again, as the original was and the d5 line to some extent was. All in all, not a great situation for A-C.

              4 Replies
              1. re: blondelle

                "does A-C really think they are in the mood to pay 3x-4x as much for a minimal design change"

                I agree. I don't think these minimal change is to convince current owners to buy new cookware. I think these changes is to make sure potential/future customers to buy them. Think of it like cars. Whenever Toyoto or Ford roll out a new design, it isn't really targeting people who just bought their cars last year. It is to stay competitive against other companies and to compete for people who are "on the market" for purchasing. Now, I am not saying that All Clad is going to have new design every year like cars -- not at all. I am just saying that new designs are to attract new customers more than convincing existing customers to buy new cookware.

                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  I'm going to create my own cookware line. I'm going to fuse the wonderful angled handles of deBuyer pans to all my All Clad. Ha. I'm going to call it "all Buyer."

                  1. re: breadchick

                    :) Cool. The name is also pretty cool. I think you should register the name now before someone takes it.

                2. re: blondelle

                  Hi, blondelle:

                  Really well put, and your logic is unassailable. I especially like "What they did is confuse their customers and basically tell them their original line wasn't as good as it was once thought."

                  The pressures on A-C from the Far East and the other "American" companies who manufacture there must be tremendously destabilizing, don't you think?

                  Aloha,
                  Kaleo