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Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Posted by MDSnell (My Page) on
Mon, Nov 25, 02 at 0:28

Following a long comparison we finally decided to try the CostCo brand (Kirkland) 12 piece Tri-Ply Clad 18/10 Stainless Steel Cookware set.

This cookware is created by permanently bonding a layer of pure aluminum between two layers of 18/10 stainless steel. The aluminum core extends throughout the bottom and up the sides of the pans allowing even and efficient transfer of heat. These are Italian made and are of extremely fine quality with flared edges for easy pouring. They are safe for baking (up to 550 degrees F (280 degrees C) and are ANSI/NSF Standard 2 compliant.

This set only cost us $199.00 plus tax and includes:

2 Qt. Saucepan with lid
3 Qt. Saucepan with Steamer insert and lid
8 Qt. Stockpot with lid
10" Skillet
5.5 Qt. Saute Pan with lid
3.0 Qt. Saucier with lid

The only negative thing we have noticed is that one must immediately dry the pans when finished washing (no drip dry)or the polished mirrorlike surface will spot - it is not permanent but is just annoying.

We have had the set for about 3 months now and have been very pleased with our purchase.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Thanks. That's probably helpfull for those who are members of CostCo. Not everyone is....

TJ


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Looks like I am going to have to buy stainless steel because of my glass cooktop. Are yours dishwasher safe? That seems to be an excellent price.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

The pans and lids are definately dishwasher safe.

If you want stainless - you really should check this set out.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

We have a set of 5-ply 18/10 Costco waiting for our new kitchen installation. The set is our 25th anniversary present to each other, but we are in the middle of construction, so haven't pulled them out yet. (But by Christmas!@!!!)

Question.... I keep reading on the Google cooking equipment forum, and now here, about the Kirkland 3 ply set. Now, I have the 13 pc, 5 ply, copper bonded set, $199, made in Italy. And it's no longer available at our local store in Salinas. ARe we talking apples and oranges here? What's the difference with the 3 ply that everyone talks about?

Thanks


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Any feedback? How does this compare to All Clad?


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

The only All Clad pan I own is:

Item: Fry Pans
Item Number: 5110
Size: 10 x 2"
Suggested Retail: $95.00 but I paid around $45.00 for it on sale.

I really like this (All Clad) fry pan very much. It seems to be a bit lighter weight than the Kirkland pan (probably because the Kirkland pan has a more solid handle) but the warranty is the same and the price is much less for the Kirkland. For the money I would buy the Kirkland over the All Clad because I can't cost justify it for the lighter weight.

That said, if you can afford the All Clad it is excellent cookware and I agree with the earlier comment that you get what you pay for - I just couldn't justify the expense for a lighter weight pan. They both cook fine.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

loking for other feedback as this will be a present...


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

anyone??????


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

still waiting....


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

If you can afford $250.00 you should get the "Steam Control" 17 piece set. (made by "Worlds Finest")
Lifetime warranty. And unlike Calpholon, you can get them and the handles in the dishwasher.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I've had the Kirkland 5-ply Stainless set for the past few weeks and love it. I investigated a number of stainless sets and it came down between the All Clad and Kirkland. Frankly, I feel the Kirkland is superior cookware and I find the weight pleasing, as I like the sturdiness of the equipment. In fact, with the exception of the weight and the manufacturer's stamps, it would be hard to tell the difference between the All Clad and the Kirkland. For my money those are the only two cookware sets worth getting.

I think the only difference between the tri-ply (older set) and five-ply is that the five ply has the addition of a copper plate on the bottom (that I don't really care for as I feel the heat conduction would be better without that extra layer of copper, which I feel serves as an insulator).


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I looked at the Kirkland 5-ply. Judging from other posts, the 3-ply has an aluminum core going up the sides of the pans, ensuring even heating. The 5-ply doesn't have this, as far as I can tell from the box. The box merely says "polished 18/10 stainless steel construction" for the body of pans. Also, a diagram on the box shows a cut-away view of the pans, and the only "ply" is the bottom of the pans: ss/al/cu/al/ss. It doesn't show any sandwich-type construction for the sides of the pans. Now, Costco's web site says the 5-ply pans have the 3-ply construction on the sides of the pans. But I don't see any evidence of this on the product's box.

Just to compare, I went to All-Clad's site. I noticed that for the LTD, the Stainless, & the MC2, and the Cop-R-Chef lines, All-Clad specifically states these products have a "pure aluminum core that not only covers the bottom of the pan but also extends up the sides." But their Copper Core line, a 5-ply similar to Kirkland's, does not state this at all. Is this an oversite, or does the All-Clad Copper Core line not have the aluminum core up the sides?

Perhaps all 5-ply pans lack the sandwich sides? Perhaps they don't need it? What exactly is the point of a 5-ply bottom anyway? If aluminum is an excellent conductor of heat, then why put in a copper layer?

The Kirkland 5-ply set is drop-dead gorgeous and heavy & balanced. I just wonder if it will heat as evenly as a 3-ply construction.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) 3-ply Stainless Cookware

I looked at the Kirkland 5-ply. Judging from other posts, the 3-ply has an aluminum core going up the sides of the pans, ensuring even heating. The 5-ply doesn't have this, as far as I can tell from the box. The box merely says "polished 18/10 stainless steel construction" for the body of pans. Also, a diagram on the box shows a cut-away view of the pans, and the only "ply" is the bottom of the pans: ss/al/cu/al/ss. It doesn't show any sandwich-type construction for the sides of the pans. Now, Costco's web site says the 5-ply pans have the 3-ply construction on the sides of the pans. But I don't see any evidence of this on the product's box.

Just to compare, I went to All-Clad's site. I noticed that for the LTD, the Stainless, & the MC2, and the Cop-R-Chef lines, All-Clad specifically states these products have a "pure aluminum core that not only covers the bottom of the pan but also extends up the sides." But their Copper Core line, a 5-ply similar to Kirkland's, does not state this at all. Is this an oversite, or does the All-Clad Copper Core line not have the aluminum core up the sides?

Perhaps all 5-ply pans lack the sandwich sides? Perhaps they don't need it? What exactly is the point of a 5-ply bottom anyway? If aluminum is an excellent conductor of heat, then why put in a copper layer?

The Kirkland 5-ply set is drop-dead gorgeous and heavy & balanced. I just wonder if it will heat as evenly as a 3-ply construction.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) 3- & 5 ply-

Sorry for posting twice. An error message led me to believe the first post didn't go through.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Ditto awm03. Was looking at the set today and came home to research and found this excellent forum. The 5-ply copper must be this year's cookware. We did notice that the bottom has the aluminum and copper, but maybe not the sides. So what is the difference? And how does it affect the cooking? We're replacing old Magnalite. Does anyone know who manufactures the cookware, which Kirkland rebrands? Also, any comments about the more rounded shape of the pans?


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I just bought this set after much research--and I LOVE it! What a beautiful set of cookware. The pan shape is so stylish, and the stainless steel/copper bottom is so pretty. I have a few All Clad pans and one Analon pan (more non-stick--cannot go in dishwasher, which is a big bummer!) and these pans out perform both!

I got my set at Costco and the price was 199.00.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

So you got the 5-ply, you mean? Can you give details about how it cooks compared to the All-Clad? I ended up buying the Kirkland 5-ply (none of the bargain priced tri-plys are available in my area). But I haven't used it yet as my new cooktop still isn't installed. Thanks for any more details you can offer. So glad you like your new cookware!


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Awm3: It is my understanding that the benifets of aluminum in cookware is that it is much lighter weight than other metals. However, a drawback is that aluminum does not evenly distrubute heat as well as, say copper, or even stainless steel. By combining a layer of aluminum, copper, and stainless steel, you are, a) getting the heat-distribution benifets of copper, b) getting the light weight benifets of aluminum (if the pan were pure steel, it would probably weigh twice as much) and, c)the impermiable, superior browning ability of a stainless steel. Recent investigations on food safety, including a reoport on ABC's 20/20, indicate that pans that have a cooking surface of aluminum, or even the non-stick teflon, could be a health hazard over time, as microscopic bits of teflon and aluminum wind up in your food over time.
I am also looking into buying a set of these dishes. You are right, however, They apparently do not have the 5-ply on the sides, but only on the base, as stated on the Costco web-site, where I found these pans on sale ($199.00). Before I ran into these Kirkland dishes, I had my eyese on the Emeril All Clad 10-pc. set for 199.00 With these, you are getting three more peices.... seems like a better deal. Here is what the Costco Web-site has to say:

Kirkland Signature products are designed and produced with only the finest quality materials and workmanship available. This beautifully fashioned cookware demonstrates an Italian stylishness with its elegant curved design and flared rim for easy pouring. Constructed of 18/10 stainless steel, the copper-bonded five-ply base is manufactured to allow even and efficient transfer of heat while eliminating hot spots.

Each pan is manufactured with a five-ply base construction consisting of two layers of stainless steel, two layers of aluminum and a copper core. The substantial impact-bonded base enables the pan to reach and maintain the desired cooking temperature quickly and evenly. This cookware is durable, elegant and easy to maintain.

--Hope this helps...
--John

Here is a link that might be useful: Kirkland Signature Stainless Steel Copper Bonded Cookware


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Just one more thing, I recently purchased a GE smooth top saran glass top stove, and I read where your pots and pans need to have a flat surface. A couple of my current frying pans have some warping, and it's very noticable on the cook top. Are the Kikland pots and pans flat on the bottom, or rounded? this may make a difference... Could anyone tell me?

-John


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Sorry to disagree with ross, but aluminum is actually a much better conductor than stainless. Copper is, as I understand it, better still. The drawback to aluminum is that it will negatively react to acids, like citrus, tomato, wine, etc., resulting in discoloration and an off flavor in foods. For a little trivia, pure carbon steel, as opposed to stainless, will actually react to acids as well and turn black. You don't want copper to come into contact with certain foods (again, those pesky acids) because....well, because the copper that would leech into the food is a poison. Anyway, this is why these pans are layered....to get the benifit of the extremely good conductivity of copper and and the pretty good conductivity of aluminum in a tidy, easy to clean, non-reactive package. As for the All-Clad/Costco issue...I have All Clad and it's great, but if I were to buy again I would save a little money and get the Costco stuff....it looks of great quality to me, and the Kirkland branded stuff is generally really reliable.

Here is a link that might be useful: Conductivity of Various Metals


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Well, I took the plunge and bought the Kirkland 5-ply. I''m now putting the set through its paces with my annual Holiday Cooking Frenzy. So far they are wonderful. The bottoms are flat. They do have a Kirkland brand stamp on the bottom, so there is a small area (silver dollar sized) that isn't completely in 100% contact with cooktop, if that makes a difference to anybody. They take awhile to heat up on my new ceramic cooktop, but once they do, I can cook on medium to medium-low heat. At that setting, my Dutch oven-ful of potatoes bubbled happily without boiling over or splattering. Ditto my batch of fudge, a gentle steady boil that reached the soft ball stage without any fuss on my part -- and no scorching on the fudge's part. Onions & celery sauteed well with no sticking. Egg fried just as I like it: crispy on the bottom, but there with a tiny bit of sticking with the egg (I used a higher heat setting, though). And the handles stay cool! After using warped aluminum junk on coil cooktops all these years, I just didn't realize what I was missing. This Kirkland set is a whole new world of cooking.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

lythonde: Thanks! I stand corrected! Your link on metal conductivity was intersting. I too took the plunge and purchased a set of the 5-plys. I would agree, they cook wonderfully. I cooked a stew, last night, with Thanksgiving leftovers, in the 3. Qt. Saucier and it cooked evenly and good. I, too have been usung cheap aluminum junk on a coil top electric stove... how nice to have a new seran-top, with good dishes to go with it. The only thing that takes some getting used to is the weight of these pots and pans. They are much heavier than what we had. I'm OK with that, and my wife says she's OK with it... but I can see where a smaller woman, or man, might get weary from lifting these with a full meal... I believe that the extra weight is worth the benificial cooking performance and the longevity I would expect from a set like this... I forgot to look at the box about the warranty... is it lifetime?
==John


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Hi John, glad you like the cookware too. What confused me about that Costco website is that the list of features states "18/10 Tri-ply stainless steel cookware" (this is printed below the paragraph that you copied). I was hesitant to buy the Kirkland set because I wanted tri-ply up the sides of the pans, like All-Clad. I wonder what the cooking difference is? Oh well. So far the Kirkland set has been a pleasure to cook with.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I would think that if they were tri-ply all the way up the sides, it would add to the weight of these pots. Are the All-Clads an even heavier pan? Not sure that I would want them any heavier than they are.
--J


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Hope I am not repeating....just finished my first post
and it didn't appear to work. Buying, by mail, the
Kirkland from Cosco. Does it have copper on the
outside of the bottom? And if so, wouldn't that
scratch/stain a white smoothtop stove? I can't tell
by the photo and no Costco around here.
Thanks
J


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Can you put the copper-bottomed Kirkland cookware in the dishwasher? Also, I assume it's safe for smooth cooktops...


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

The copper is the middle part of the 5-ply "sandwich": ss, aluminum, copper, aluminum, ss. Stainless steel is on the bottom of all the pans.

As for using the dishwasher, I'm too chicken to try and was too tired last night to reread the brochure I'd filed away that came with the set :)


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Thank you for your response. Someone mentioned
that the " s.s. /copper bottom was so pretty", so
I was unsure.

J


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I really need some new cookware and I want to avoid teflon. Is the 5-ply the only kind Costco sells with the Kirkland brand? (in case I go looking this weekend). It sounds good from all yours posts. Are you serious cooks or weekend warriors? The All Clad is expensive but I would be happy to invest in it over time if it really does make a difference. But WHAT type of All-Clad?? I would like non-stick w/out teflon and am not really worried about "spots" on the cookware from use.

Does the Kirkland 5-ply have glass tops? I LOVE that feature BTW and would be disappointed to not be able to see inside since I am not a very good cook (even tho the good lord knows I try) and it REALLY does help me to be able to see inside (is it simmering or boiling?? etc.).

I have read, and read and re-read people's comments. I am still not sure what to do

Thanks, Susan


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

The Kirkland ss 5ply clad come with metal lids. There is also a Kirkland brand of dishware that looks like a Caphelon look-alike... not sure what kind of lids they have. I'm not a serious cook... just looking to become better at it... I do notice a difference in even the way soups and sauces come out in a good quality cookware. Things seem to reduce at a lower heat. There are some great quality cookware out there with glass tops. I would recommend the Emerilware by Allclad (not quite the quality of mainline Allclad, but seems like a good product for the price.) I haven't seen a mainline Allclad with a glass top... but perhaps they are out there...


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Does anyone know yet if the Kirkland 5-ply is dishwasher safe? Thanks.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

If it is stainless on both the inner and outter parts of the pan then the kirkland will be fine for dishwasher, if on the other hand the outter is brushed alluminum or copper, then no you would not want to put it in the dishwasher.

Chris


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I finally worked up the courage to put my Kirklands in the dishwasher. They clean just fine. One hint: the microfiber cloths are great for drying and polishing the pots & pans.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

After following this thread, I went to the Costco website and I was unable to find a Kirland stainless steel set for $199.00. I need some help locating it and reading up on it.

Don't know much about cookware and need a new set. This sounds just what I might be interested in.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Now that I'm an experienced Kirkland user (all of 2 1/2 months), I must say how pleased I am with this cookware. They are a delight to cook with. So far, no scorching, no boil overs, minimal splattering, and the big fry pan makes a beautiful crispy crust on breaded fish.

The only downside is the weight. I can't drain the 3 qt. pot with one hand, as in draining pasta or rice into a colander, or pouring a sauce or syrup into a bowl. The handle is so smooth and slippery that the heavy pot slips back into the upright position when you try to tilt it for pouring. But...I can live with it.

The icing on the cake is that the pots and pans are so beautiful. They look lovely sitting on my cooktop whether they are cooking dinner or just holding the leftovers.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I have the same 'complaint' that the handle is rounded enough to slip a bit. I think I'll try one of those slip on rubbery handles and see if that helps. Have you ever tried one of those? Like you, tho, I love the pans and I can live with this. And my guests comment on how nice these are, too.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

"I think I'll try one of those slip on rubbery handles ..."
Good idea! Thanks for sharing it.

Last week I made orange/lemon marmalade in the Dutch oven. That involved cooking down the fruit mixture until it reached the jelling stage -- about an hour of gentle boiling. I was so happy with the Dutch oven: no scorching, no splattering until the end when the fruit got thick (I could have turned down the heat to correct this, but I was getting impatient). The marmalade came out perfect!


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Do the handles get hot? Can you buy any of the pieces separately?


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Can't buy them separately. This is Costco, after all. If it's not in bulk, it's not there. LOL! Handles do heat up somewhat, but I expect that anyway. You can put the entire pan into the oven, tho. There are always trade-offs. Pans that go into the oven have metal handles that can heat up. I think that's a rule.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Linder ~~

If this works, here is a link to the $199 set at Costco.

I've been looking at this set for several months. Every time I pick up the 10" skillet, I sigh ~ I can't do it without two hands. I love this set ~ it's beautiful and affordable combined with functional (or so it seems). I just wish I could get past the weight.

Elizabeth

Here is a link that might be useful: Costco's Kirkland Set


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

This is a great cookware set, and I'm bumping up the thread so people shopping for stainless steel cookware can see.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I just bought this set last night. I have read several places that All-Clad is best, but I can't afford it right now (after spending a fortune on a new kitchen). Still, I wanted something *new and wonderful* to cook in until I can fill up the coffers enought to buy something better. I must have looked at this Kirkland set fifty times. Finally gave in. I especially love the steamer pan, size-wise and the feel of it. Plus they are so beautiful.

I have two questions:

1) Is the exposed copper portion of the pans easy to keep clean? My mother cooked with a copper-bottomed set for many years and it was a pain to keep clean/polished.

2) Does anyone know who *really* makes this Italian cookware?


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Does anyone have thoughts, experience with Wearever Brand? My sister is letting me use some of hers which her husband bought at Costco. I have glass top stove. Thanks for any replies.


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RE: aluminum core going up the sides of the pan

I cut and pasted this from Consumer Guide.com: "All-Clad Stainless is the best high-end cookware, say experts. All-Clad's heavy aluminum core, which extends up the sides of the pan, is sandwiched between a stainless steel cooking surface and an exterior layer of magnetic stainless steel. That makes it a good choice for use with gas ranges, where flames can lick against the sides of cookware. This is the most popular cookware with experts, who also note it is heavier than cheaper pots and pans. You get one ten-inch nonstick fry pan with this set. Experts also like the nonstick version of this cookware, All-Clad Stainless Nonstick." Hope this helps.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Having been researching for a while the best cookware to buy, I'm getting really tired of all the "All-Clad Stainless is the best high-end cookware, say experts" hype. It's understandable, because All Clad has some well-paid flaks, but it's not true. The experts I've read state unequivocally that the following are better than All Clad Stainless for most or all pieces:

The following are better on all measures for at least all the straight-sided pieces (not in any particuar order):
* Paderno Grand Gourmet
* Sitram Professerie
* Sitram Catering
* Demeyere Atlantis
* Demeyere Sirocco
* Demeyere Apollo

The following are better for the non-straight-sided pieces (i.e., frying pans, curved- or slant-sided saute pans, etc.):
* Demeyere Atlantis
* Demeyere Sirocco

Some of the above also cost a lot less than All Clad, as well. (Not Demeyere, though.)

The following are far better for cooking purposes than All Clad and the above products, but have copper exteriors and are not induction-compatible, so they may or may not be better for a particular application:

* Falk Culinair
* Bourgeat
* Mauviel

There are others that I haven't listed here.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Quote: " It's understandable, because All Clad has some well-paid flaks, but it's not true. The experts I've read state unequivocally that the following are better than All Clad Stainless for most or all pieces: "

Where did you get your information from?

According to "Cooks Illustrated" a monthly magazine that does not sell any space in its magazine for ads, says that All-Clad is the overall best stainless cookware available.

Take a look at the reviews on their site:
http://www.cooksillustrated.com/testinghome.asp

And again they do not let sponsors taint their results. No advertisements on their PBS television program : "America's Test Kitchen" and no ads in their magazine "Cooks Illustrated"

Here is a link that might be useful: My Kitchen Renovation


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I've attached a really thorough discussion of the subject of cookware, the metallugy involved, and how that relates to the task of cooking. Also, if you rumage around the forums at that site, there are some good discussions of cookware, and what's working for people.

I tried the Cooks Illustrated link--It wanted me to buy a subscription before it would let me look at the reviews.

The bottom line is that the lines of cookware I listed put more and/or better heat-conducting material in the places where it counts in the cookware, and are at least equal to All Clad in the exterior metals they use. Despite marketing hype, this stuff isn't black magic. You build something with X amount of Y metal, and you get a deterministic result. If you build something with with better materials, or amounts more appropriate to the task as hand, you get a better result.

I'm not familiar with your sources, so I have no opinion about their integrity. However, my experience with "unbiased" journalism leads me to suspect that all too often the results go to the guys spending the marketing bucks. For many years, I developed commercial software products written in the "C" language. Every time Microsoft announced a new version of their C compiler, there would be a flurry of magazine articles describing supposedly-objective benchmarks tests of the new compiler, all of which showed Microsoft's product well ahead of all their competitors. We'd try the new Microsoft compiler on our production code base, and every time the Metaware "High C" compiler proved to be substantially superior to the Microsoft compiler. So, I've become very jaded about these "unbiased" tests.

I supposed the that same might be said about the folks I've been reading. But there is a certain independently-verifiable, objective component there--7 mm of aluminum is a lot bigger than 2 mm of aluminum. 2.5 mm of copper conducts heat a lot better than 2 mm of aluminum. And no amount of black magic invoked by All Clad marketing can change that.

That said, All Clad is a nice product--there's certainly nothing wrong with it, and people who own it can do so knowing that they have pots and pans that will cook very well for them.

Here is a link that might be useful: Understanding Stovetop Cookware


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I'm with SolarPowered in terms of being tired with the "All-Clad is the best" message.

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Here is a little something I wrote (updated, the origional is linked below).

There are a lot of tri-ply (stainless/aluminum/stainless), fully clad across the base and up the sides, stay-cool oven-safe riveted handles, tight-fitting lids cookware that are available, but that you almost never see in stores. People don't know about these other cookware lines because it's harder to come across them, especially if a certain store (like WS or BB&B) carries only one line of tri-ply clad cookware. At WS and BBB you can compare that one tri-ply clad line against lines like Calphalon One anodized aluminum, two-ply copper, single-ply stainless, nonstick, circulon and the like--which to me is not a true comparison at all. Organizations like CI/ATK also seem to product test in similar waysnot 10 or 20 different tri-ply lines against each other, but one tri-ply clad line (usually AC) against cookware made of different materials like anodized aluminum or single ply stainless-- again, not a fair comparison, in my opinion. I speculate that the source of this lack of easy comparables is because of the huge marketing muscle of AC, revealed in product placements on food shows, and exclusive distribution agreements with retailers, plus laziness/lack of shelf space on the part of bricks & mortar retailers, and the strong name brand recognition/word of mouth appeal of AC, which basically allows the product to sell itself.

So you won't see all the tri-ply clad lined up together and you won't be able to cross-compare them immediately or easily.

Some tri-ply fully clad lines include:
Cuisinart Multiclad;
Tramontina Tri-Ply Clad;
Calphalon Tri-Ply (with glass lids);
Calphalon Contemporary Stainless (also with glass lids);
KitchenAid;
Henckels Classic Clad (with funky handles);
Revere Total Tri-Ply;
ChefMate;
Le Gourmet Chef;
Members Mark (from evil Sams Club);
Sur La Table house brand;
Fagor Commercial;
Gourmet Standard,
Anolon Commercial Clad (discontinued; but some internet retailers still offer it for sale, including on ebay, as of this writing March 2005; their roaster in particular is a pan of note);
Farberware Millennium Clad (discontinued); and
TAkum Ravenna (call the company for retailers/pricing, as this might be the least expensive of them all).

Bottom line: the list grows longer with each passing day

I prefer those with brushed stainless exteriors--like the Cuisinart Multiclad (and you can get 10-12 piece sets off of ebay for ~$200), and the now-discontinued Farberware Millennium Clad. I also like the design of the Cuisinart Multiclad and Farberware Millennium Clad better since ALL pots and pans in the line have flared rims for drip-free pouring (some of the AC stainless line has flared rims, and some straight rims). I also like the handles on the Cuisinart Multiclad and Farberware Millennium Clad better than those on the AC. In my opinion, the handles have better balance, and are easier to control (they are not at angles as striking as AC and are thus easier to grasp, even if you are not 66" tall) and have less potential for slippage. So there is much to be said for chunky (sometimes funky-looking), brushed handles set at flatter angles over those that are thin, elegant, gleamingly polished and perfectly smooth and set at striking angles.
The set of cookware that is the closest near-identical to All-Clad that I've come across is the Le Gourmet Chef set (Le Gourmet Chef has stores in outlet malls around the country), for about 35% cheaper than AC. http://www.legourmetchef.com/product.php?category=1&page=9&product=777

For the best bargain copy, you can get an 11 piece set from Sam's Club under their house Members Mark brand-- all tri-ply, all clad up the sides, tight-fitting lids, stay-cool oven-proof handles, and even the same inconsistency of some pans having flared rims and other ones not, for a whopping $130. The set is assembled in the U.S.A. (probably some guy in the south/Midwest riveting the handles to the bodies/lids, but the bodies, lids and handles themselves are made in China). Not sure if the exterior stainless is 18/0 like AC, so bring a magnet with you to test it if induction capability is important to you. http://www.samsclub.com/eclub/main_shopping.jsp?mt=a&n=0&coe=0&oidPath=0%3A-23541%3A-23967%3A-24050%3A-31030%3A872131

Dont worry if you are not a Sams Club memberjust make sure the store has it (you can audit the store, just tell them you are thinking of becoming a member) and that it looks OK to you. Then go over to the WalMart nearby and buy a gift card for yourself for the price of the set, plus tax. Then use that gift card at Sams Club. Or go through an internet retailer for a slight bit more (~$170 + shipping; do a web search for "members mark tri ply clad" and a couple of them will show up).
The two good things I can say about AC is that (1) usually the stuff is made in the U.S.A. (whereas the less expensive brands are typically made elsewhere, like China, Korea, Brazil, or Italy, among others), and (2) they are induction compatible since the exteriors of most of the line is 18/0 magnetic stainless. The 18/0 stainless exterior is useful to have if you have or are thinking of getting induction. But if you dont have or plan to have induction in the future, 18/8 or 18/10 exteriors are perfectly functional.

It's also worth mentioning that the TAkum Catania and Campania collections are very nice alternatives to the AC Ltd line, for a fraction of the price. http://takum.com/cookware/takum/catania.htm (metal lids) http://takum.com/cookware/takum/campania.htm (glass lids, slightly thicker aluminum)

The Takum Tuscany line is a very nice alternative to the AC Cop-R-Chef, Cusineart Copper, and Calphalon Copper lines, again for a fraction of the price. http://takum.com/cookware/takum/tuscany.htm

And though a lot of folks claim that AC is "the best", here is an excerpt from a paper presented at the 2001 International Food Technologists meeting that suggests that the copper disk bottom cookware are superior in heat distribution http://ift.confex.com/ift/2001/techprogram/paper_8729.htm
"A comparison between surface temperature distribution of different composite cookware show that the three-ply base cookware made of stainless steel, aluminum and copper performs best, followed closely by two-ply base made of stainless steel and aluminum, and the three-ply composite cookware made of stainless steel, aluminum and stainless steel."

But cookware is not ONLY about surface temperature distribution, and the paper does conclude "...Due to its consistent high performance, buying choice for composite cookware may be based on appearance or price rather than performance differences."

And finally, there is an even more interesting alternative out therethe Daniel Boulud cookware, which is tri-ply, but the middle layer is made of carbon steel, copper, or aluminum, depending on which pan you buy and what it is used for. https://www.chefscatalog.com/category/cat901001/q_and_a_boulud/

Yes, AC is good cookware, but there are a lot of comparable (dare I suggest even better?) cookware out there, often for substantially less $$$.

Originally posted on Gails March 17, 2005; tweaks made along the way afterward.

Here is a link that might be useful: Alternatives to All-Clad posted at Gail's


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Just a quick plug from another Kirkland 3-ply owner. We've had the 3-ply set (8 qt. stock pot; 5.5 qt. saute pan; 3.5 qt. , 2 qt. & 1.5 qt. sauce pans), since my DH gave it to me as a surprise Christmas gift in '99 . . . they cook wonderfully, we've used them A LOT, and they still look terriffic. No warping, no serious scratching, and most of the pieces have been through the dishwasher hundreds and hundreds of times.

For anyone else out there who is wondering if the Kirkland cookware is a good value . . . absolutely!


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Kirkland Cookware Inside Staining

I just purchased a set of the 3 ply Kirkland cookware and thought it was beautiful and well made, until I used it. Each and every pot I have used results in the interior staining, even as far as leaving individual rice imprints on the bottom of the pot.I am cooking under low to medium heat, not burning anything, but still each pot's interior is now discolored and rather UGLY. Any advise??


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RE: Cookware Inside Staining

Barkeeper's Friend is your friend. It will remove the stains and discoloration from your stainless justlikethat.

Check around on the forum for more info about it. It's a cleaning powder readily available in most supermarkets.

Stainless can discolor even if you use low heat, btw ... :)


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Much to my surprise, when I did the magnet test this weekend on Costco's Kirkland 5 ply set (with copper sandwich bottoms) it worked! The bottom stainless layer must be 18/0 even though they don't mention anything about this. Nice to have this option for us induction types.


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Get the Costco stuff!

Don't worry about the brand name... use what works best!

Whether you buy All-Clad piece by piece, or over time, it's easy to end up spending $800-$1500 on what amount to, let's be honest, FRYING PANS! They are just one small step in the making of your finished recipe. Both the All-Clad and Kirkland stuff are more than capable of handling serious daily use. (Obviously you're going to need to use nylon utensils with nonstick cookware if you want it to last more than a month! I actually use a rubber "spatula" instead of a nylon spatula; it works great in a nonstick pan.)

I've used, on a daily basis, All-Clad Stainless, All-Clad LTD, and currently, the Kirkland nonstick cookware (Costco #783634) for sauteing, frying, roasting, etc. I consider all three to be excellent cookware, and I've noticed no difference in performance between them. Obviously the nonstick makes life MUCH easier. I prefer the Kirkland pans' handles. They are hollow stainless, and are easier to grab. The All-Clad ones are thin and V-shaped, and aren't as easy to work with. Which is a pain when you're doing 2 crepes simultaneously, each in their own pan, and Time Is Of The Essence. :-)

I've got the Kirkland pans set up on a wall rack in my home kitchen, and it looks very sharp, so don't let the low price fool you... it's very high quality manufacturing, and if you're going for that "cool kitchen" look it's just as slick as the All-Clad stuff, in my opinion.

I believe that good cookware (and a hot fire) can turn cooking from a chore into a fun, memorable experience. If you've got a junkyard of pots and pans, struggle to turn out consistently cooked food, and find it generally miserable, I recommend giving the Costco stuff a try. You get an entire set for the price of 1 to 1.5 All-Clad pans, you take it all home that day, and can immediately use it all.

To sum up: buy the Kirkland stuff, and use the $1000 you saved on not buying an expensive frying pan... to buy higher-quality ingredients... French wine... organic produce... which will REALLY make for good cooking!


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I know this is an old thread but TrudyJ's question above "Does anyone know who manufactures the cookware, which Kirkland rebrands?" got me wondering so i did some digging.

According to "Costco Connection" (Costco's magazine) found here: http://costcoconnection.texterity.com/connection/201008/?pg=78 "Kirkland Signature cookware has been made by the same manufacturer (now the world's second largest) since 1994". Quick search for the worlds second largest cookware manufacturer turns up Meyer Corporation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meyer_Corporation Wiki says "Meyer's cookware is manufactured and distributed internationally with factories in China, Thailand and Italy." which goes with what we're seeing in where they're made - The cookware was made in Italy before and people are now finding some from Thailand? Admittedly, I havent looked at the bottoms of the pans at Costco in a while. According to www.meyer.com, they own Analon, KitchenAid, Paula Deen, Fujimaru, Raco, Bonjour, Rachael Ray, EarthPan, Circulon, Faberware, Essteele, Select, Prestige, NapaStyle, Silver Stone and FineT.

None of this is official... just a guess from someone who was curious and did some digging


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

Just wanted to share that when pots have aluminum, these can be damaging to the brain overtime. For instance, if acidic foods like tomatoes sit in a pot with aluminum in the refrigerator for a few days...as these age, the aluminum can leach into the food. Here's a great site I found, where you can learn more details about stainless steel, and what each term means:

Here is a link that might be useful: SSINA


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

SSINA is a stainless-steel marketing group with a vested interest in pointing out negatives of all other materials.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I am attempting to compare the Kirkland 13 piece ss cookware with the Emerilware All-Clad 10 piece set. Kirkland has 5 ply layers in the base but it is unclear if it goes up the sides too. The pots are much heavier but does that make them better? Emerilware is only 3 ply in the core but it does have different feature such as glass lids,pouring spouts and strainers in the lids. Price is similar, Costco is 179 and Macy's sale price is 199. for emerilware plus some bonus peices.


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

The original post from MDsnell in 2005 described the Kirkland cookware built with 5-ply all around the pots/pans (base/bottom and sides). It seemed that Kirkland cookware had changed its material design. The current design only has 5-ply at the base/bottom. The sides are only constructed of SS.

Emeril has 2 SS designs: The "Pro-Clad" and the regular "Stainless Steel". The "Pro-Clad" is triply at the base and the sides. Whether, the "Stainless Steel" is triply only at the base.

If you want to compare fairly with the Kirkland cookware, you'd need to purchase the regular Emeril's Stainless Steel.

I find it interesting that Costco website did not specified the Kirkland cookware oven safe temperature. Whereas, the Emeril SS is clearly stated that the cookware is oven safe up to 550F degrees, and the glass lid oven safe to 350F degrees.

Here is a link that might be useful: Emerilware Cookware Styles


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

"is that the five ply has the addition of a copper plate on the bottom (that I don't really care for as I feel the heat conduction would be better without that extra layer of copper, which I feel serves as an insulator)."

Ignorance is bliss I suppose. The put aluminum in pots because it heats up quickly. They cover it in stainless because cooking in aluminum does not work well with acidic foods. The copper layer retains the heat the best of any metal. It does not serve as an insulator. As a professional chef, for the price these are the best you can buy. Sure All Clad may be "better" but who can afford a similar set of All Clad pans?


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RE: Costco (Kirkland) Tri-clad Stainless Cookware

I personally use All Clad Stainless. I bought one / two pots a year when they went on sale at Macy's or the All Clad outlet. I used Revere ware for years. That's what I got as a wedding gift but, I keep melting and warping the discs on the bottom, so I searched for different pots. I went thru the glass ones and the kitchenaid ones then wound up with All Clad. For the money and the quality I think you can't go wrong. They clean up well and work great on the stove. That's not to say there are not equal or better pots out there. I just think picking cookware is a personal choice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Stainless Pots and Pans


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