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Mar 17, 2012 08:51 AM

Cast iron cookware with a crown logo? Or recc a smooth finish brand?

I have an old cast iron fry pan that I love...inside is super smooth. I want to buy some more of the same brand, as I like the smooth finish, not the rougher finish of lodge. It has a crown logo...anyone have any idea as to what brand this is? And, if not...could you recc a brand of cast iron that is smoother than lodge? I know seasoning helps, but this started out with a smoother finish from day 1, and I prefer that! Thanks!

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  1. Those of us who like the smoother finishes on our CI, have usually bought vintage pieces. The two vintage brands that I know of are Wagner Ware and Griswold. I have a no name that came to me stripped and smooth. But the key seems to be the age of the CI. There have been the equivalent of volumes written here about this. Go ahead and search this site for info. And you can search ebay to see what vintage pieces look like, and how much they go for.

    I have heard of French CI but have no idea where you would find pieces of it. A lot of cheap CI is now made in China. There are those who abhor the Chinese stuff. There are others who think American made Lodge ware is just fine.

    You might Google to find a cast iron enthusiast group, where someone might know more about your piece.

    I also recommend asking elderly relatives for their old cast iron, if that is feasible. If the piece has been used, it should be smooth. You can always strip and reseason.

    1. If you are buying locally, say at a thrift shop, brand shouldn't matter - just look at the finish yourself. You could buy online, but I imagine shipping could double the purchase price, unless you are buying a collector item.

      Half a century ago there were lots of American foundries making cast iron pans, in standard sizes, and without logos or brandname packaging. These were generic items you could pick off the shelf at any department or hardware store. A milled interior was common, if not universal. Neither of the pans I have from that era has a marking other than a size number.

      1 Reply
      1. re: paulj

        I wonder how the Griswold name came to be so treasured. The think I like best about Griswolds is the pouring spout, which is very refined. They are nicely balanced in the hand, but even my no name is balanced (if heavy) in my hands. I used my big no-name today. Oddy enough, it has never taken a seasoning as well as my smaller Griswolds.