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Pondering new Saute Pan

m
mikie Jan 23, 2012 06:43 AM

Although the original owner doesn't seem to mind, the old large saute pan has domed on the bottom and is useless in my opinion, all the oil and butter runs to the outside edge. So I'm in the market for a new pan and frankly the more I read and the more I look at pans, the more difficult the decision becomes.

From the start, rule out any pan made in China or the pacific rim, not interested, so it's either EU or US made, all others need not apply. I tend to cook Italian, but not so much red sauce and pasta, but things that get browned and then sauted with onions, garlic, fungi, etc. I do some in a Staub braiser, but my 9" isn't big enough for many of the things I cook and although I could get an 11" model, I think a saute pan would be more usefull. I read on Cooks Illistrated that pans 11" and greater don't fit burners very well and tended to not produce even heating in their tests. They did pick a winner, but I'm not a member so I don't know what won their test. They also ruled out non-stick for obvious reasons. So, what do you guys think?

I have looked at AC, I'm a top grip, so I don't find the handle very comfortable, not a deal killer, but an issue. I looked at a Demeyere Atlantis and it weighs a ton, which is good, but the sides were very high and it was very heavy, again not a deal breaker, but an issue. I have looked at copper, not high on the list of the original owner of the current pan, and again, it's really heavy, I know it's a good thing, but. I looked at Scanpan CTX clad, jsut don't know if the heat transfer is very good, I have a non-stick scanpan for eggs but that's different construction.

Your thoughts are appreciated.

  1. SWISSAIRE May 6, 2012 01:52 PM

    It sounds like you are on the right track. Depending on the volume of sauce you make on a regular basis, a large saucier ( in English a Windsor ) might be a good solution to consider.

    In Europe we look at such pans in three views: Pan or pot walls that are straight, curved inward, or sloped. If in your application, you are making sauce for Italian cooking, then a curved wall pan or pot would allow your stirring spoon to work the best. It would provide good evaporation to reduce the sauce, and also allow you to take the sauce building up on the pan wall to the spoon, and continually reintroducing it back into the cooking.

    Sauté pans (or a Sauteuse) do not really do this well, as they are more used for cooking vegetables in butter for example. Sauté pans have a large surface area and low sides to permit steam to escape, and allow you to cook and to toss the food at the same time. I have tried this over the years, and our Rösle Sauteuse pan just does not perform a slow sauce as well as a saucier pan. In fact, on our induction cooktop, it can actually tend to burn sauce, versus the slower cooking saucier, when both are turned to a low temperature with the timer, or on a Nr. 1 or 2 setting.

    Just for clarification for others reading here, the word " sauté " comes from the French verb " sauter ", meaning to jump. Sauté pans here may have straight vertical sides, but usually have flared, or rounded sides. "Jumping vegetables " is a rather quick process in a pan, while as you know, cooking your good pasta sauce takes time. Start the sauce basics, turn on the B&O, and let the sauce take it time to develop and enjoy.

    1 Reply
    1. re: SWISSAIRE
      d
      divadmas May 18, 2012 11:50 AM

      someone gave me a cuisinart green gourmet ceramic pan. i have heard ceramic wears out quickly but this has a lifetime warranty. it is the most non stick pan i have ever used and cleans up easily.

    2. s
      sueatmo Mar 1, 2012 10:30 AM

      As I discovered, reading another thread, there is an American made line of tri-ply made by Regal:

      http://www.regalware.com/regal-ware-p...

      I like the no nonsense commercial/industrial look of these pans. I don't where you'd find one to look at though.

      I use a stainless saute pan, an older model Cuisinart with a copper disk in the bottom. It works well for me and it hasn't warped in the 12 or so years I've used it. I think it is important to know if your burner runs a little hot or a little cool. I use my pan on medium almost always, unless I need a quick brown. I disagree a bit about weight. I don't like a heavy unbalanced pan. A good pan is more than the sum of its parts. I'd just start picking up pans wherever I went. (I do this anyway.) And sending for a small pan in a line you like could also be a good learning experience.

      Good luck on your search.

      5 Replies
      1. re: sueatmo
        d
        divadmas Apr 11, 2012 04:06 AM

        i use a glasstop stove so the hob has to match pan size pretty closely. i have been avoiding cast iron, my favorite skillet i found domes out enough to give bad contact. i was thinking of going carbon steel as i like using high temperature but all these stainless steel pans sound intriging, esp straight sided pans with loop handles. problem is ss i have used in the past is hard to keep clean. does anyone have any advice?

        1. re: divadmas
          s
          sueatmo Apr 15, 2012 08:29 PM

          OK. I use a glass top and iron skillets with no warping. Are you heating your pans on high all the time? Try to use medium heat for most things.

          I like stainless because it is easy to clean. The newer dishwashers really clean stainless up with out much prewash. But I tend to rinse or soak everything after use. If you have spots or burned on bits, you can use a Brillo or SOS on the pan with no problem.

          I don't know what you found hard about cleaning stainless; to me it is very simple.

          All pans suffer if they are constantly used at high heat though. You will have better results if you back the heat off. I had to learn this. I have better results now.

          And it is OK to have several sorts of pans. I have a new carbon steel skillet coming very soon and I am interested in learning how to use it well.

          1. re: sueatmo
            d
            divadmas Apr 16, 2012 11:07 AM

            sorry, i wasn't clear. glasstop is not blazing hot. i think i domed skillet on a gas stove, did not notice dome till i dug it out for some cornbread. i try to avoid cast iron on glasstop, already have small scratch i suspect from someone shaking a nonstick pan.
            i was always told not to put stainless in dishwasher. i will try it.
            even spots of oil on stainless seem to burn on. sos vigorously used does get spots off eventually but it is a lot of effort every time after frying when i am more used to just using a soapy scrubbie.
            i envy the kind of heat this guy uses on carbon steel with charcoal stove in thai restaurant.
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__sNNc...

            1. re: divadmas
              k
              kaleokahu May 18, 2012 12:04 PM

              Notice how he uses his spatula/shovel as a fire poker?

              1. re: kaleokahu
                d
                divadmas May 18, 2012 02:09 PM

                and where do eggshells go? gotta love the third world.
                i try to ignore how many health code violations my favorite asian food places get.

      2. j
        John Francis Feb 29, 2012 09:56 PM

        "I read on Cooks Illistrated that pans 11" and greater don't fit burners very well and tended to not produce even heating in their tests. They did pick a winner, but I'm not a member so I don't know what won their test."

        In case nobody else has answered this: the new issue of Cooks Illustrated has a new overview of sauté pans. At the top, for $200+ each, are the Viking Stainless 7-Ply 3-Quart Sauté Pan and (no surprise) the All-Clad Stainless 3-Quart Tri-Ply Sauté Pan. The next step down, Recommended rather than Highly Recommended, are the Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Triple-Ply 3 1/2-Quart Sauté Pan with Lid (narrow cooking surface but otherwise good), a Best Buy for $80, and the Calphalon Tri-Ply Stainless 3-Quart Sauté Pan, marginally better but more costly at $125.

        But could you be talking about skillets, not sauté pans? Skillets are measured in inches, sauté pans in quarts.

        11 Replies
        1. re: John Francis
          m
          mikie Mar 1, 2012 06:20 AM

          John, thank you for your response, but you have been beaten to the punch so to speak further up thread.

          I was talking sauté pans and yes although they are measured in quarts, it seems different manufacturers have different ratios of height to diameter, so a 3 quart from one manufacturer may have the same size bottom as a much larger capacity pan from another manufacturer. Just based on literature that's available on line, not actual measurements made by me, The Viking V-7 3 quart sauté has an 11" bottom as does the 4 quart Chantel Copperfusion, the 4.2 quart Demeyere Atlantis, the 4.5 quart Falk, the 4.9 quart Sitram and the 5.75 quart Mauviel M-Cook. If you are looking for realestate onto which you can place a number of chicken breasts for example, there is a huge difference between a 3 quart pan with a 9 to 9½ " pan and one with an 11" bottom. About 25+ square inches in this case. And, although you don't get the best heat distribution on most hobs, mine included I'm sure, you get an additional almost 40 square inches going up to a 13" pan. If I'm cooking with a lot of liquid, I'll use the enameled cast iron cocotte, so I don't need the capacity the taller sides provide in quarts, but the surface area. I also found that for the size in inches of the pans, the higher volumes also meant extra weight, weight that I didn't need for this particular pan. The 3 quart Viking with the 11" bottom weighed 4 lbs 8 ozs, while the Mauviel M-Cook 5 ply also with an 11" bottom but almost twice the capacity, weighed 6 lbs 12 ozs.

          An engineer can make one heck of a spread sheet to take pan shopping ;)

          1. re: mikie
            sherrib Mar 1, 2012 09:15 AM

            Hahaha. During the time period that I was replacing my non-stick pans I would walk into stores armed with a tape measure and a list of my favorite pans with their exact dimensions and capacities. I think the workers in the stores thought I was a little nutty. But it was the best way for me to figure out what I needed. On that list, I even had my "worst" pan shapes to ensure I wouldn't replace those with equally "poorly shaped" pans. Although not an engineer, I have a background in computer science. Close enough?

            1. re: sherrib
              g
              GH1618 Mar 1, 2012 09:28 AM

              Computer Science in some universities is an engineering degree, in others not. My standard is that an egineer is someone with a degree from an engineering college.

              1. re: GH1618
                sherrib Mar 1, 2012 01:14 PM

                Oh well . . . This is definitely not the first time I've felt like I don't measure up to the standards on these cookware boards ;)

                1. re: sherrib
                  Chemicalkinetics Apr 11, 2012 05:55 AM

                  Some kind of an engineering convention here I see. Oh well. See you kids later. :)

                  1. re: sherrib
                    c
                    cstout Apr 11, 2012 09:51 AM

                    sherrib...please don't ever feel that you don't measure up to the "standards" here...not true at all, everyone has something to contribute!

                    1. re: cstout
                      sherrib Apr 13, 2012 09:44 AM

                      CS,
                      Thank you so much for the encouragement. Cooking is strange that way. No matter how much you think you know or how good you think you are, there's SO much still left to learn and you're always left feeling that there's room for improvement.

                2. re: sherrib
                  k
                  kaleokahu Apr 11, 2012 12:47 PM

                  Hi, sherrib:

                  This is actually a very smart way to do it. Not only do you get to handle the goods, but you know how they compare, size-wise, with yours. If you order on-line, you are shooting in the dark to a great extent, and if you order from anywhere but your own kitchen, you're in utter darkness without such a list.

                  Aloha,
                  Kaleo

                  1. re: kaleokahu
                    sherrib Apr 13, 2012 09:39 AM

                    Kaleo,
                    Thank you! I got so many "looks" in the stores I would go into - it wasn't an easy thing to do. It was when I started looking into heavy copper cookware that I began getting really crazy with it. I didn't want to shell out that kind of money and THEN decide that the shape/size was impractical for me. Especially since I did, in fact, end up purchasing a lot of that stuff online.

                    1. re: sherrib
                      SanityRemoved Apr 16, 2012 08:52 AM

                      There should be a second adage of "Your eyes are bigger than your stove.".

                      Even in stores it is difficult to judge how large a pan is going to be on your stove. "Oh this looks good" becomes "Wow, that's huge" when the pan is placed on the stove.

                      Getting a feel for the pan is great though. I remember picking up a de Buyer Mineral pan for the first time and realizing it was built like a tank.

                      Making a paper cut out of a pan can be useful when you don't have a same sized pan available.

                      1. re: SanityRemoved
                        sherrib Apr 16, 2012 01:23 PM

                        Making a paper cut out was the only thing I didn't do. When renovating my house, however, I took my Mom with me to the appliance showroom. This was years ago and I knew my Mom would know better and she did. I ended up purchasing a six burner professional gas range top vs a four burner unit I had been thinking about. Not that I ever use all six at once. She demonstrated it for me in the showroom. She walked around, took three of the biggest pots they had on display, put them on the six burner unit and said "See, six burners means that you will only be able to fit three large pots!"

            2. m
              mikie Feb 2, 2012 07:55 PM

              Does anyone know which saute pan Cooks Illustrated picked? Just curious how they rated them.

              Thanks,

              22 Replies
              1. re: mikie
                n
                NotJuliaChild Feb 2, 2012 08:26 PM

                Product Name
                Viking Stainless 7-Ply 3-Quart Sauté Pan
                Manufacturer
                Viking
                Model Number
                VSC0303
                Price
                $219.95
                Recommendation Status
                Highly Recommended
                Testers’ Comments
                This midsize pan’s heft was a boon to steady heating and even browning, and it’s so well proportioned that the weight didn’t bother us. The handle sported a ridge for a secure grip and stayed cool on the stove; the heavy, sturdy lid fit securely.
                Weight (without lid)
                4.6 lb
                Dimensions
                10 1/2 in by 2 1/4 in; 3.88 mm thick
                Material
                Stainless with aluminium core; metal lid
                Ovensafe Temperature
                600°F

                1. re: NotJuliaChild
                  Pedr0 Feb 2, 2012 10:10 PM

                  The All-Clad 3qt got a "Highly Recommended" as well.

                  $165 on Amazon.

                  1. re: NotJuliaChild
                    m
                    mikie Feb 3, 2012 06:03 AM

                    Wow, that's a detailed response, thank you very much for taking the time to put all of that information into your response. I thought from what I was able to access on the internet that it was the Viking but not knowing for sure was driving me nuts. I'm adding this pan to my wish list, I bought the 6qt Viking but I don't always need that much room, frankly, I don't usually need that much room. For a guy that usually does his homework, I failed to measure the old saute pan we had before I went shopping and I knew I wanted one "size" larger. But when I got home with the 6 qt pan is was much much larger than the old saute, probably more than one incremental increase. I've been trying to compare square inches of bottom and how that relates to how much food actually goes in. I can't for the life of me figure out why saute pans are sold by the quart like a sauce pan and not by the inch like a frying pan. Ok, I know you put liquid in a saute pan, but how much food you can brown at one time depends on the surface area not the height of the side walls.

                    Thanks again so very much for taking the time to post

                    1. re: mikie
                      b
                      brooktroutchaser Feb 4, 2012 07:57 AM

                      I purchased the 3 qt. saute and it is about 11 inches across. It makes me feel like a serious cook. Love it. Mikie, I'm sure you'll come up with new recipes that match your pan.

                      1. re: brooktroutchaser
                        m
                        mikie Feb 4, 2012 08:09 AM

                        I could probably just double most of them ;) I'm going to put the 3 qt Viking on my list. The old saute pan is about 9 to 9.5 inches so it's about half the square inches of the new pan, I think the 11 inch 3 qt would be just right for most of what I do.

                        It is an impressive piece of equipment isn't it.

                        1. re: mikie
                          k
                          kaleokahu Feb 4, 2012 07:27 PM

                          Hi, mikie:

                          How's the big Viking cooking so far?

                          Aloha,
                          Kaleo

                          1. re: kaleokahu
                            m
                            mikie Feb 29, 2012 08:34 AM

                            Hi Kaleo,

                            Thanks for asking. Sorry for the late reply, but at least I have more experience with it now. Actually it's working out better than I would have thought. For as large as it is the heat is more even than I would have thought it would be. It's nice and flat so the oil covers all the bottom ;) I think Mrs. mikie is figuring that out now (stubborn German). It just barely sits flat in the sink so cleaning is relatively easy. I want to get the 3 qt for when I don't need the really big pan.

                            1. re: mikie
                              applgrl Feb 29, 2012 02:14 PM

                              If you need a smaller pan, check out the pricey and oh so perfect Le Creuset (enamelled cast iron) skillet line. I have the big monster and I wouldn't trade it for the world. I'm going to buy the smaller version if/when my kids move out: it can't be beat for going from stovetop to oven. The temperature retention, in my view, is unbeatable. You can make the most delicate pancakes, saute, or roast a chicken in a Le Creuset. I've been known to bbq a fruit pie (on low) in one during the hot summer months.

                              Unless Mrs. Mikie has anger issues, that is. It's one heavy skillet.

                              1. re: applgrl
                                m
                                mikie Feb 29, 2012 02:49 PM

                                applgrl, thank you for your reccomendation. Actually, I have a 2.5 qt Staub braiser and I do use that quite a bit, it's been my go to for quite some time, but it's only about 9.5 inches and some times it's a little crowded in there. I'd really like to have the 4 qt model, but haven't taken the plunge yet. It's about the same size as the 3 qt. sautè but I think for items that don't go into the oven the sautè might be more versatile.

                                On the fruit pie note, I did attempt a pinapple upside down cake in a cast iron skillet on the gass grill. It would have turned out better if my thermometer had been more accurate. I'll get it next time, now that I know the darn thing was way off.

                              2. re: mikie
                                k
                                kaleokahu Feb 29, 2012 03:54 PM

                                Hi, mikie:

                                I'm glad you like it. The 3Q was Cook's Illustrated's "Top Pick" in the April 2012 issue now on the stands. While the review is problematic internally (and limited to SS pans), they really liked yours a lot. Said they (fair use doctrine, Mods): "There's no getting around it: We loved the Viking Stainless 7-ply 3-Quart Saute Pan ($219.95). Yes, its price is steep, but it offered a stellar heating performance [who knows what was delivered], a roomy cooking surface (a good 10 1/2 inches--a more generous expanse than the cooking surface of our Dutch oven, as well as of our recommended skillet), a stay-cool handle, a helper loop, and a snug-fitting lid...This midsize pan's heft was a boon to steady heating and even browning, and it's so well-proportioned that the weight didn't bother us. The handle sported a ridge for a secure grip and stayed cool on the stove; the heavy, sturdy lid fit securely." If the question ever comes up later, your pan is reportedly 3.88 mm thick overall.

                                So... Whatever you're doing, CI is listening!

                                Aloha,
                                Kaleo

                                1. re: kaleokahu
                                  m
                                  mikie Feb 29, 2012 06:32 PM

                                  Hi Kaleo,

                                  Thanks for the review. It is heafty, but nothing like the copper pans I handeled. If CI was to listen to someone on this board, it shouldn't be me, it should be a knowledgeable person such as yourself.

                                  Take care,

                              3. re: kaleokahu
                                c
                                cstout Feb 29, 2012 08:43 AM

                                Hey wait a minute...don't everybody run off now, just because mikie is happy...there are some folks out here who are not in the the upper echelons, I am a Jeep girl myself, so please steer me into something in the middle class range.

                                Am just getting into trying to learn how do do proper cooking techniques, so I thought I would start out with sauteing...well, things started getting complicated..straight sides, & on & on.

                                I am sitting here looking at my collection of cast iron pans with ruler in hand, eying the sides & thinking, I really do need some sort of "saute" pan. Maybe in another lifetime I will get one of those 300dollar pans. I want to see me actually learn the saute techinque before I move on. Please help.

                                1. re: cstout
                                  g
                                  GH1618 Feb 29, 2012 09:25 AM

                                  I suggest keeping an eye out for bargains. My All-Clad MC2 3-qt sauté pan was less than $100 on a returned item sale. My daughter just bought the All-Clad LTD2 "Brown and Braise" pan from Cutlery and More for a little over $100 on clearance.

                                  1. re: GH1618
                                    c
                                    cstout Feb 29, 2012 09:36 AM

                                    GH1618, I would have passed this up since it said "Brown & Braise" instead of "Saute"...I read on one site that some people are hawking saute pans when they are not really a true saute pan....gosh will my food know if I am sneaking in an imposter?? I guess I need to know what makes a good saute pan first.

                                    Yes, I will go to the Cutlery & More site right now. Thank you...I can handle that one hundred dollar price tag.

                                    1. re: cstout
                                      g
                                      GH1618 Feb 29, 2012 09:53 AM

                                      I don't know the difference between the "brown and braise" pan and the sauté pan. They have a different lid. Perhaps the weight of the pan is different. Unfortunately, the All-Clad web site is very poor with respect to product descriptions, and discontinued products disappear from it immediately.

                                  2. re: cstout
                                    m
                                    mikie Feb 29, 2012 09:31 AM

                                    Hi cstout,

                                    I had one unique stipulation that created quite a price increase, one for which I'm willing to pay, not made in China. Of the pans under my consideration, of which there were just under 20, the lowest priced pan was the Sitram Profiserie at $120 for an 11" pan made in France. This is stainless with an aluminum disk bottom that is very thick. The aluminium Borget that Kaleo pointed out up thread was only $65, and no cooking in aluminium is not going to kill you. If you don't limit yourself to "not made in China" then the field is wide open and a number of pans from the likes of Calphalon, Cuesinart, Trimontina, etc. are all in the $55 to $75 range, some are disk bottom and some are triply. Hope this helps.

                                    1. re: mikie
                                      c
                                      cstout Feb 29, 2012 09:45 AM

                                      mikie....yes yes, never in China (at least I hope). Got my pencil sharp & going to search the Sitram Profiserie & the Borget....I did not know aluminum was OK to cook in...banned it from my mind like I did "Non Stick".. Thank you for pointing those 2 out.

                                      1. re: cstout
                                        SWISSAIRE Feb 29, 2012 11:38 AM

                                        If European products are a consideration:

                                        The RÖSLE SAUTEUSE is manufactured in two sizes: 20 cm and 16 cm. We started with a 16cm in 2004, but my wife and I find the 20 cm Teknika version the best, used almost daily. Stainless, with inside alu. core up the walls of the pan.

                                         
                                         
                                        1. re: SWISSAIRE
                                          m
                                          mikie Feb 29, 2012 12:07 PM

                                          I've seen the Rösle utensels in many stores here in the States, but never have I seen their cookware, so I'm not sure it's available here. The EU brands I have on my list include: Chantel (Germany), Demeyere (Belgium), Falk (Belgium), Fisler (Germany), Mauviel (France), Scanpan (Denmark), Sitram (France), and Viking (USA brand made in Belgium). It appears Lagostina (Italy) is not available in the US any longer, or at least I was unable to locate that brand.

                                    2. re: cstout
                                      e
                                      ericaskitchen Feb 29, 2012 02:52 PM

                                      Cookware & More is having its semi-annual 20% off sale:

                                      http://www.cookwarenmore.com/

                                      1. re: cstout
                                        k
                                        kaleokahu Feb 29, 2012 06:42 PM

                                        OK, cstout:

                                        Personally, I'd take this pan over mikie's for $72. http://www.ebay.com/itm/SITRAM-PROFISERIE-SAUTE-PAN-4-9-QT-A20249-STAINLESS-STEEL-/370580196221?pt=Cookware&hash=item56484d0b7d

                                        Or more pan yet for $111: http://www.ebay.com/itm/SITRAM-CATERI...

                                        Aloha,
                                        Kaleo

                                        1. re: kaleokahu
                                          m
                                          Miss Priss Mar 1, 2012 09:18 AM

                                          Kaleo, I can't view those eBay items at the moment, but if the Sitram Catering pan you're linking to is the 11" saute, I have one and I love it. Found it for cheap at a flea market after it had apparently endured years of heavy use and poor care. It cleaned up amazingly well and performs beautifully. If I ever need another one, I'll gladly pay retail.

                          2. m
                            mikie Jan 28, 2012 06:13 PM

                            I ponder no longer. tanuki soup inspired me to take a serious look at Viking and this weekend I put my hands on one and it was on sale for $40 less than the lowest internet price I could find, so I took the plunge on the 6qt model. It's heavy but not obsenely so. Many of the other pans that made my short (actually quite long) list were not available for a personal interview, which makes it difficult for me to adiquately evaluate them. Of the pans I could acutally handle, this seemed to be the best for what I need. WS had a wonderful copper pan with brass handle, but it weighed a ton and at $650, I'm not that good of a cook. I liked the handle better on the Viking than I did the AllClad 6qt. And although the Demeyere Atlantis was a wonderful pan, I thought it to be heavy and expensive for its size, although after setting the 6 qt Viking on the range top, it looks rather large. The copper fusion that I saw wasn't very large and I was a bit uneasy about the enamel for a saute.

                            Thanks to everyone for their ideas and suggestions.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: mikie
                              tanuki soup Jan 28, 2012 07:15 PM

                              Thanks for the follow-up, mikie. It's always interesting to hear what people finally decide on. It sounds like you got a really great deal! Hope you can post your impressions after you've used the new pan a few times.

                              1. re: mikie
                                k
                                kaleokahu Jan 29, 2012 09:03 AM

                                Hi, Mikie:

                                Good on you. Happy cooking!

                                The makers and sellers ought to take notice of how important it can be to let the customer actually handle a pan. And, if we think about it, we buyers ought to realize that our *virtual* stabs in the dark actually reduce the possibility that brick and mortar stores will have pans for us to handle. Shop local whenever you can.

                                Aloha,
                                Kaleo

                                1. re: kaleokahu
                                  sherrib Feb 4, 2012 08:35 AM

                                  + 1

                              2. k
                                kaleokahu Jan 28, 2012 04:16 PM

                                Hi, Mikie:

                                There is this for $65... 6.4mm thick all around. Phenomenal value.

                                http://www.culinarycookware.com/bourg...

                                Aloha,

                                Kaleo

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: kaleokahu
                                  c
                                  cstout Feb 29, 2012 08:27 AM

                                  kaleokahu, isn't aluminum bad for us?

                                  1. re: cstout
                                    paulj Apr 16, 2012 11:25 AM

                                    No

                                2. m
                                  mikie Jan 26, 2012 07:04 PM

                                  Of the pans I've found that meet most of my preceived needs some are less familiar. Has anyone had experience with Fissler? Made in Germany, disk bottom from what I can find, more "industrial" in apperance. Just wondering if that's a path I should look at or not.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: mikie
                                    k
                                    kaleokahu Jan 26, 2012 08:38 PM

                                    Hi, mikie:

                                    I visited their site. If you're considering the Original Pro sautes, I think they are aluminum-disk core, but Fissler doesn't say how thick the disk is. The build quality looks good and I like the large handles. Not crazy about spot-welding the handles on, but they *are* German, so maybe not a safety concern.

                                    Kaleo

                                    1. re: kaleokahu
                                      m
                                      mikie Jan 27, 2012 07:44 AM

                                      Hi Kaleo,

                                      I'm not that concerned about spot welded handles, our old stuff (40+) is InKor made by WestBend if I recall correctly. All the handles are plastic but the connection is spot welded to the pans. We only recently had a casualty and that was when daughter-in-law droped it on the tile floor. The welds gave way and I could see that not all of the spot welds were 100% good prior to impact. This could be a selling point to get more new pans, safety around the grandkidos.

                                      I was also considering the Demeyere Apollo 4.2 qt with an aluminum disk (5mm) and it too has a spot welded handle very similar to the Fissler. Even the Demeyere Atlantis has welded handles, "for sanitary purposes", but it has a 2mm copper disk bottom and is almost double the price, but is less industrial looking. Thanks again for checking this out, your opinion is highly respected.

                                      1. re: mikie
                                        k
                                        kaleokahu Jan 27, 2012 09:20 AM

                                        Hi, mikie:

                                        Both of these are "7-layer" sandwich bottoms. I have seen the cutaways from both pans, and you cannot even *see* layers 2, 3, 5, and 6 they are so thin. I think they work only as bonding layers for 1,4 and 7. Layer 4 of course being the aluminum (Apollo) and copper (Atlantis).

                                        I think they're both good pans. There is a 3-pound difference in weight in the 4.2Q size (6 for Apollo and 9 for Atlantis), but both have helper handles, so both should be manageable for both of you to carry. Obviously, Apollo would be easier for your wife to toss.

                                        I have a good indie kitchen store right next to my office that has both. I'll stop and ask their opinion later today.

                                        Kaleo

                                        EDIT: OK, I stopped at the store and picked some brains. After a lot of him-hawing, the store's pan guru said it is a "wash" between the 4.2Q sautes, Atlantis v. Apollo. As you know, I do not suffer fools gladly, and the ONLY thing I was offered that THEORETICALLY might tip the cooking balance in favor of Atlantis was downward responsiveness. I'm not sure I even agree with this, given the cladding.

                                        What I DID learn from the manager is that the "Silvinox" lining finish is considered to be absolutely "bulletproof" and worth having. It's on the Apollo as well. She also gave her opinion that layers 2,3,5 & 6 are there principally to prevent warpage.

                                        The main handles are tubular, straight, feel light in my hand, but seem securely attached.

                                  2. tim irvine Jan 26, 2012 06:22 PM

                                    Heavy, tin lined copper would be my choice if there were no cost constraints. My BIA that I bought in the early/mid 70s was my first piece of heavy copper. It is still my favorite pan. Here is a comparable pan:
                                    http://www.buycoppercookware.com/mauv...
                                    I cannot imagine it warping.

                                    I have no idea if you could find 4mm aluminum. The thickest I have ever seen was maybe 2.5 mm. They still have it at Dehillerin if you choose the heavy aluminum route.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: tim irvine
                                      m
                                      mikie Jan 26, 2012 07:20 PM

                                      Copper is on the list, but frankly, Mrs. mikie isn't keen on copper. I've had a difficult enough time getting a buy in on a new saute pan, I'm not sure I want to push the copper issue. In her mind at least it's too heavy and more maintaince than SS. I've learned in 40 years not to try to be rational when it comes to conceptual issues, it's a loosing proposition.

                                    2. m
                                      mikie Jan 26, 2012 03:59 PM

                                      I've been doing some online searching and the possibilities are numbing. I've narrowed it down to about 15 possible candidates from 9 manufacturers from the US and EU. In this group are at least a half dozen different technologies for construction: lined copper, lined aluminum, copper disk bottom, aluminum disk bottom, 3 ply, 5 ply, 7 ply and plys with copper. The prices range from about $200 to over $500 and the 4 to 6 quart or 11" to 14" diameter pans range in weight from just over 6 lbs to 10.5 lbs. No two pans are anywhere near the same to make comparisons as to the weight for the size. Add to this the other intangable atributes of a pan, such as helper handle or not and if some pans are still available or not.

                                      With this level of complexity, I have to ask myself, what's really wrong with a suate pan that's domed in the middle, so what if all the oil runs to the edge of the pan? Not really a question, but being an engineer, I like to work with facts and figures and comparisons and that is really difficult when it comes to certian types of cookware.

                                      One of my daughters just bought a Cuisinart for about $50 so I have a good reference point on the low end. It's light weight and once you get past the disk bottom it's remarkably thin and even the disk bottom isn't all that thick. One reason to stay away from the low cost made in China stuff.

                                      17 Replies
                                      1. re: mikie
                                        k
                                        kaleokahu Jan 26, 2012 04:18 PM

                                        Hi, mikie:

                                        Why don't you *try* some pans? Borrow some, go to an indie kitchen or appliance store where they have demo pans, impose on friends and neighbors.

                                        I have just purchased a vintage silver-lined copper frypan for $122. If, after I check it out, you want to take it for a spin, just let me know.

                                        Aloha,
                                        Kaleo

                                        1. re: kaleokahu
                                          m
                                          mikie Jan 26, 2012 06:05 PM

                                          Hi kaleo,

                                          That is a very generous offer, very generous, but I really couldn't impose. I can't say I know what our friends and neighbors use for cooking. I know the guy in the office next to mine has some AC copper core, but I really don't think I could say what anyone outside of family has for cooking.

                                          Unfortunately, I know enough to be dangerous, but not enough to be confident. I'm taking your suggestion for 2mm of copper or 4-5 mm of aluminum very seriously and now have to find the right pan for the job. Thanks again,

                                          1. re: mikie
                                            k
                                            kaleokahu Jan 26, 2012 08:12 PM

                                            mikie:

                                            Seriously, no imposition. I've been lamenting that there is no "lending library" of pans, so that we CHs can know more practical, experiential things about the wares we discuss. In your case, you're an ideal and trustworthy person with whom I am happy to start. Let me know if you change your mind.

                                            Aloha,
                                            Kaleo

                                            1. re: kaleokahu
                                              o
                                              olympia Jan 27, 2012 05:45 AM

                                              where shall I send my address?

                                              ;)

                                              1. re: olympia
                                                k
                                                kaleokahu Jan 27, 2012 08:59 AM

                                                kaleokahu@gmail.com

                                                1. re: kaleokahu
                                                  o
                                                  olympia Jan 27, 2012 10:17 AM

                                                  You are too cute! Why don't you post some pictures and a review for us!?

                                                  1. re: olympia
                                                    k
                                                    kaleokahu Jan 27, 2012 10:55 AM

                                                    Hi, olympia:

                                                    I still have that Revereware set you wanted. Someone yesterday contacted me wanting it. You sure you're out?

                                                    Aloha,
                                                    Kaleo

                                                    1. re: kaleokahu
                                                      o
                                                      olympia Jan 27, 2012 11:07 AM

                                                      Hi!
                                                      I'm afraid you might be thinking of someone else. I'm all set with my copper and all clad! Thank you though!!

                                                      1. re: olympia
                                                        k
                                                        kaleokahu Jan 27, 2012 11:35 AM

                                                        Gosh, sorry, I knew it was someone nice, like you.

                                                        1. re: kaleokahu
                                                          o
                                                          olympia Jan 27, 2012 11:48 AM

                                                          Now I feel like you really don't know me! *sinister laugh*

                                                          You mentioned it to me not too long ago but you already exerted your evil (copper) influence over me!

                                                          1. re: olympia
                                                            k
                                                            kaleokahu Jan 28, 2012 04:37 PM

                                                            That's me, a copper Beelzebub.

                                                            1. re: kaleokahu
                                                              o
                                                              olympia Jan 29, 2012 09:12 AM

                                                              You said it!

                                                              ;)

                                          2. re: kaleokahu
                                            j
                                            jljohn Jan 26, 2012 06:06 PM

                                            Kaleo,

                                            Where do you find such things?

                                            Jeremy

                                            1. re: jljohn
                                              k
                                              kaleokahu Jan 26, 2012 08:18 PM

                                              Hi, Jeremy:

                                              In various places, but mostly eBay and Craigslist. I am now habituated to spending a few minutes a day looking. Why, would you like me to point you toward a good deal? I'm happy to help.

                                              Aloha,
                                              Kaleo

                                              1. re: kaleokahu
                                                j
                                                jljohn Jan 28, 2012 05:31 PM

                                                Hi Kaleo,

                                                I have been scouting both (I'm in Boston, and I check all of New England's Craigslist), and I haven't seen much of anything.

                                                I am looking for an 11" (or slightly larger) saute pan in 3mm or full 1/8", and I haven't seen a thing. I have chatted with Mac in Brooklyn about having one made, but that might require have a full sheet's worth of pots and pans made up. I did miss a nice little collection of 10"x3mm saute pans that someone sold on ebay a month or so ago, but I've not seen much else.

                                                If you know of anything, please do let me know--I sure would appreciate it!

                                                Thanks,

                                                Jeremy

                                                1. re: jljohn
                                                  k
                                                  kaleokahu Jan 29, 2012 08:48 AM

                                                  Hi, jljohn:

                                                  Send me your e-mail and I'll keep an eye out for you. kaleokahu@gmail.com Let me know how much you're willing to pay.

                                                  Here's a good example of wht you will find on eBay: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mauviel-Franc...

                                                  It doesn't *say* it's 3mm, but I'm about 80% sure it is--8lbs for a smaller saute is the giveaway. If you ask the seller to measure, they usually will, but you run the risk of them putting the answer into the ad, thereby attracting flies. There was a 7-piece (all pans, including a huge saute and a large casserole) set that also looked to my jaded eye to be 3mm that sold Friday evening for only $342--i.e., less than the cost of ONE piece of lesser cookware new.

                                                  Aloha,
                                                  Kaleo

                                          3. re: mikie
                                            o
                                            olympia Jan 27, 2012 05:51 AM

                                            If it were me I'd go bigger - I have a smaller saute (11") and a larger (13") as well as two brasiers and I love my larger sized ones best even though I cook for two (sometimes with leftovers). I find them great for cooking one pot meals. Plus, there's no need for doing things in stages; I'm able to brown everything at once and it does brown, not steam.

                                            I'd make a helper handle a priority. I don't do any tossing so I'm fine with long or short handles but I definitely prefer to have two. Another feature that I look for is that it has a rounded lip for pouring.

                                            Personally, I've never had any luck with disk bottomed pans so I wouldn't choose one but that's me! I love my copper (Matfer-Bourgeat) as well as my clad SS (AC). Good luck!

                                          4. Pedr0 Jan 24, 2012 11:48 AM

                                            I just recently picked up a Mauviel M'cook 3.4qt saute pan and love it. They're now on sale at Cutlery & More too: http://goo.gl/HBHx0

                                            Handle is much more comfortable than All-Clad.

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: Pedr0
                                              n
                                              NotJuliaChild Jan 24, 2012 02:52 PM

                                              That same pan is $130 from Amazon.

                                              1. re: NotJuliaChild
                                                Pedr0 Jan 24, 2012 03:18 PM

                                                I'd scoop it up for that price.

                                              2. re: Pedr0
                                                c
                                                cutipie721 Jan 24, 2012 06:09 PM

                                                I can't hit my head hard enough for not getting one last month. :-(

                                                http://camelcamelcamel.com/Mauviel-52...

                                              3. tanuki soup Jan 24, 2012 03:48 AM

                                                Maybe a Viking frying pan? Nice and roomy, wide bottom, sits perfectly flat on my induction cooktop, 7-ply fully clad construction (I believe its actually made by Demeyere in Belgium), heavy but not ridiculous, comfortable handle, pouring lip, domed lid available, not outrageously expensive.

                                                I recently got the 13-inch version for making pork cutlets with pan gravy, and I'm really happy with it.

                                                http://www.amazon.com/Viking-VSC0511-...

                                                 
                                                1. k
                                                  kaleokahu Jan 23, 2012 06:44 PM

                                                  Hi, mikie:

                                                  How much do you want to spend?

                                                  If you're looking at clad, that Sitram full-clad with 8mm aluminum base for <$50 looks fabulous. Query whether you would be happier with an 11" though.

                                                  Best,
                                                  Kaleo

                                                  8 Replies
                                                  1. re: kaleokahu
                                                    m
                                                    mikie Jan 23, 2012 08:15 PM

                                                    Hi Kaleo,

                                                    Oddly, the cost is not really a factor, I can afford to put a Ferrari in the Kitchen, just not in the garage. It's really a matter of what works best and the limitations on weight that are imposed, although this will be predominently my pan. Yes the 11" would be a better fit. Looking at the catering model with the copper disc, I'd really like to see one of these in person so I could handle it. Although Amazon is good about returns, I'd rather not have to go through that.

                                                    I do appreciate all the suggestions so keep them coming. Thanks,

                                                    1. re: mikie
                                                      k
                                                      kaleokahu Jan 23, 2012 10:56 PM

                                                      Hi, mikie:

                                                      OK, budget is open. And since you're thinking 11", that will probably exceed the size of your hob, which means that the pan needs to have a highly conductive base to cook evenly. IMO, that means at least 2mm of copper or 4-5mm of aluminum under your food. Now, how important is responsiveness relative to the convenience factors of having SS (or high-carbon+enamel) inside and/or out? And is it important at all to you to have the pan be induction compatible? If the pan weighs 7-8 pounds empty, will it prevent you from using it the way you want (i.e. tossing contents)? Are you willing to take the same kind of care of your saute as you do your knives?

                                                      No matter how you answer these questions, I think you should handshake all the pans you're considering. I think if you do, something will "click" for you, and the decision will make itself. I know you to be a careful, detail-oriented guy. You already have a broad knowledge of the factors, pros and cons, of the general options. I'm sure you'll make a good and pleasing choice.

                                                      Aloha,
                                                      Kaleo

                                                      PS: Let me also plant a conceptual seed... Have you considered a rondeau? Same pan shape, fits in the oven, smaller footprint on the cooktop and table, two handles make lifting easier...

                                                      1. re: kaleokahu
                                                        b
                                                        breadchick Jan 24, 2012 06:04 PM

                                                        Hi Kaleo,

                                                        I recently bought the AC s/s 4 quart/domed lid rondeau and it's one of my favorite pans. I have quite a collection of AC, and had the 4 quart s/s saute for years. I really wanted the domed lid so the new pan can be a small braiser as well and I love the two handles instead of a long one - easier to use in the oven and to store. Perfect for meals for two.

                                                        When I got the rondeau, I gave the saute to my son. He's happy! (But, he's still eyeing my large s/s AC braiser. He's gonna wait a bit longer for that one!)

                                                        I do want to warn anyone interested in this pan: the cheaper model (around $160) is made in China and it's not well made. The domed lid doesn't sit well on the pan and is skimpy. I returned that to Amazon, and got the one that cost around $260 (as I recall.) Now THAT's the AC made in the USA I know very well and the quality I expect.

                                                        1. re: breadchick
                                                          JoanN Feb 29, 2012 08:59 AM

                                                          I'm guessing a rondeau is the same thing as a sauteuse?

                                                          http://www.chefsresource.com/sauteuse...

                                                          I was just coming here to recommend exactly that. I adore that pan, use it more often than anything except my cast iron, and--in addition to the other attributes you mention--it can go directly from stovetop or oven to table because it looks as good as it functions.

                                                          1. re: JoanN
                                                            k
                                                            kaleokahu Feb 29, 2012 12:39 PM

                                                            Hi, JoanN:

                                                            The verrnacular gets confusing because it's imprecise. 'Sauteuse' is just the feminine of a saute, but the commonest usage refers to *slope-sided* saute pans like a fait tout, Windsor or evassee. They can have one or two handles.

                                                            'Rondeau', on the other hand, most commonly means a *straight-sided* saute pan with two handles rather than one. The rondeau is roughly synonymous with brazier or shallow casserole. The marketing departments of the pan makers have decided to call their pans different things, and they like French words, even if they don't fit the pan's shape 100%.

                                                            Buy the shape you need, and don't get hung up on the names, is my advice.

                                                            Aloha,
                                                            Kaleo

                                                            1. re: kaleokahu
                                                              m
                                                              mikie Feb 29, 2012 01:58 PM

                                                              Hi Kaleo, Here's where engineers and cooks seperate themselves, as an engineer, if the recipe states one should sautè the ingredients, I reach for a sautè pan, on the other hand if it said place the ingredients in a sauteuse, then I would buy a sauteuse or find another recipe that used the equipment I have at hand. I'm jsut getting to the point that I realize one doesn't have to measure a ¼ teaspoon of "freshly ground black pepper". one can simply grind until you think you have enough. I could never hold the peper mill accurately over that tiney litte ¼ teaspoon anyway. Cooking is very difficult for engineers, we're not wired properly ;) I learn something new every day, thanks.

                                                              This is a bit toung in cheek jsut incase someone takes it seriously.

                                                              1. re: mikie
                                                                g
                                                                GH1618 Feb 29, 2012 02:10 PM

                                                                "Cooking is very difficult for engineers, ..."

                                                                I take exception to that remark. But then, I worked in a restaurant long before becoming an engineer.

                                                                It seems to me that any engineer should understand the notion of "significant digits" implicitly, and therefore not assume more accuracy than required. It is those who are trained in neither cooking nor engineering who should be having difficulty.

                                                            2. re: JoanN
                                                              b
                                                              breadchick Feb 29, 2012 07:34 PM

                                                              Thank you for your response, JoanN. I completely agree!

                                                    2. n
                                                      nationalbar Jan 23, 2012 06:17 PM

                                                      10" fry pans are more useful for sauteing, most restaurants use them as it heats fast and even and yields the right portion size. We've been using these for years-for just about everything, including Thomas Keller's Bouchon pan roasted chicken recipe- and haven't found anything that works better:
                                                      http://www.webstaurantstore.com/10-carlisle-60710rs-ssal-stainless-steel-aluminum-fry-pan/27160710RS.html
                                                      Be advised, it's best to hand wash these as running them in the dishwasher will cause the outer aluminum to discolor.
                                                      The Kool sleeves make them very comfortable to use, much better pans and handles than the AC in our opinion.
                                                      If you want ss inside and out, and a more old-school saute pan shape, these Sitrams are top notch:
                                                      http://www.jbprince.com/sitram-profis...

                                                      You can chuck these in the dishwasher, no muss-no fuss. The thick aluminum in the bottom works great.
                                                      Both of these pans are pretty light, easy to move and shake.

                                                      1. c
                                                        chuckl Jan 23, 2012 02:02 PM

                                                        Check out Sitram

                                                        1. g
                                                          GH1618 Jan 23, 2012 09:26 AM

                                                          What size do you want (depth as well as diameter)? Nonstick or SS cooking surface?

                                                          I like my 3qt All-Clad sauté, but sometimes wish I had the 4qt, which is the same diameter, but deeper. I don't find the handle a problem, because of the helper handle. I only pick it up with one hand when empty.

                                                          Cutlery and More has a lot of A-C on clearance, including something called a "low casserole" with two loop handles instead of the long handle and loop.

                                                          1. Jay F Jan 23, 2012 06:56 AM

                                                            I've never used anything by Regal Ware American Kitchen, but they are made in the USA, and their 10" saute pan costs $100. The handle looks solid on top, so you wouldn't have the All-Clad V-shaped handle digging into your hand. But again, I've never even seen this brand, so I can't say anything about it from experience.

                                                            https://biz.regalware.com/alt/RRETAIL...

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: Jay F
                                                              Candy Jan 23, 2012 02:21 PM

                                                              I sell both Regalware and A-C. Except for the finish, brushed stainless on RW as opposed to polished on A-C there and handles is no difference in between them. Same tri-ply construction. If I were in the market I'd buy Chantal Copper Fusion. The heat conductivity is much faster and extremely even. If you ever contemplate going to induction you'd be amazed at the efficiency and speed. There is a total of $4 difference in price. Chantal is gorgeous too. I have red and love it.

                                                            2. Becca Porter Jan 23, 2012 06:45 AM

                                                              I love my 6 qt. AC SS saute pan. I got it for an amazing price at: http://www.cookwarenmore.com/

                                                              The handles are certainly not super comfortable, but I really don't mind. The pan is awesome.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Becca Porter
                                                                o
                                                                olympia Jan 24, 2012 06:22 AM

                                                                I'd 2nd the recommendation for an AC 6 qt. I really love this pan! I'd recommend the D5 though since the handles are much more comfortable in my opinion. I really wanted a big pan and this really suits me well.

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