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Apr 8, 2014 07:21 PM

Cookware Board denizens

On some other topic recently, someone characterized the Cookware Board as the Chowhound equivalent of the high school A-V club, which I thought was clever, and, maybe, appropriate. I realized that my mind is full of assumptions breaking the Board down even further:

I envision the LeCreusetphiles as the Sex in the City girls, unable to resist a high-priced shoe store or the latest pricey handbag. The Kitchen Aid stand mixer fans are a subset of this clade.

The knife collectors are almost all males, into sports generally, and especially hunting and fishing. Sometimes they get roles on Criminal Minds.

The collectors of naked cast iron are bearded, beefy guys with plaid flannel shirts. And girly calendars on the walls of their garages.

Those with a passion for All-Clad, deBuyer, copper pans, etc., are type-A, driven types for whom cooking is more engineering than craft/art. Not gender-specific, and quite ambitious but a bit insecure despite being capable.

The large appliance mavens are the CH version of the Tool Time guy:
"More power!" This applies to their entertainment electronics too. They can be younger than the pan and cast iron collectors, and are mostly males.

With the exception of the LeCreusetphile category, the other afficionados don't necessarily enjoy cooking, or do it regularly. They are often more interested in the prepping and other component tasks than in consuming/enoying/appreciating the final results.

Anyone have any idea what the actual demographics of kitchen equipment fans are, either on Chowhound or in general? Or do you have different stereotypes to share?

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  1. There are a lot of ways you could take this metaphor. I'll go with a Breakfast Club version:

    The Le Creuset crowd are clearly personified by Molly Ringwald's Claire. They like everything to be pretty and nice. They collect $150 pots like kids collect pokemon cards (or whatever the hell kids collect now), so they probably have money. If they saw you in the hall while they were with their friends, they might not acknowledge you. And they're probably the only ones who can dance (...kind of).

    Cast iron thugs have to be Judd Nelson's John Bender. They're big - better to lift cast iron or.. you know... sand it or some shit. They're surly at times, but that surliness becomes more understandable the more you get to know their circumstances (in lieu of John's poverty and abuse, the cast iron-heads have to deal with answering the only three questions there are to ask about cast iron over and again in perpetuity).

    The knife guys are Emilio Estevez's Andy. Distinctly male, aggressive when provoked (or egged on by their friends), probably somewhat less cool than they imagine themselves to be.

    The Performance Pan crowd are best represented by Anthony Michael Hall's Brian. Now in truth, several of the cookware subcultures have strong, almost undeniable claims to the Nerd character. So its no small accomplishment by the P. Pan guys to take home that particular crown. Thermal conductivity vs specific heat FTW.

    Last but not least (maybe least? Nah...), the Appliance-ophiles are left with Ally Sheedy's Allison. Which is fitting enough. They don't speak up very much, and when they do, sometimes no one responds. And in the end, they get a [kitchen] makeover and are never seen again.

    2 Replies
      1. re: cowboyardee

        LOVE (and I've never once visited the cookware board).

        1. re: BiscuitBoy

          Shut up before I outdance you and clock you with the lid of my Staub!

            1. re: BiscuitBoy

              My Aquitalias by Marvin K, more like.

          1. re: MGZ

            Are you asking "Who let the hounds out?" (woof!)

            1. re: MGZ

              We sent someone to chat you up and then slipped out while you were distracted. You were animatedly explaining the myriad of ways in which you are similar to a big ol' sloppy hound dog as we snuck by, IIRC. Piece of cake.

              1. re: cowboyardee

                Hat's off!

                I spose I'm just pissed I had to sit and talk to Vernon for nothing. . . . Well, at least I got the fifty bucks.

            2. Crap I am literally all of that

              1. You missed the alarmists. These are the folks who are afraid their old-fashioned tinfoil hats will leech aluminum straight into their brains. These folks would truly love cooking if everything wasn't out to get them. They have stockpiled glassware for leftovers, but are afraid to use them, lest the glass explodes. And, since cooking using any pot or pan will kill them and raw foods are rife with bacteria, they are mostly very skinny and tend to flinch at the slightest sound.