Calphalon Commercial Anodized Cookware
Q: I have the opportunity to purchase a 12 piece set of Calphalon commercial anodized cookware for around $240. I've heard both good and bad things about this line of cookware which I can summarize as follows: Good: ---- 1) Durable 2) Uniform heating Bad: --- 1) Can't go in dishwasher 2) Not non-stick 3) Heavy I've also heard reports of the adodized coating wearing off. Don't know how accurate these reports are. All of the negatives are not particularly important to me. I don't think I'd put any set of expensive cookware in the dishwasher even if the manufacturer OK'ed it. I've ruined cookware before this way. I've also used non-stick cookware and the non-stick surface always seems to wear away eventually. I am curious about how well these pans can perform as non-stick if used properly with correct temperature and oils. As for the weight, I guess that's why they're durable. I'd like to hear opinions about how well these pans cook, and if those who use them would purchase them again or would buy something else (All-Clad?). Have they held up over time? Has the coating worn away? At the price I'm looking at paying, are they a bargain? Thanks in advance,
A: I have one piece (2 pieces? it has a lid) of anodized Calphalon. A 3 1/2 qt stock pot that I bought on about a year ago sale for $40. It cooks very well, and is almost non-stick if you don't crank the heat up too high under it. The finish is still in good shape; there is a little bit of pitting in one spot on the inside bottom, but I think it's a manufacturing defect and it doesn't affect cooking. The pitting does not go through the anodizing. I might buy another piece of Calphalon if I found a similar deal, but I wouldn't buy a set. I like a mixture of stainless steel and cast iron pieces better. Anodized aluminum is a pretty good substitute for SS or CI but is more expensive and requires more care. But it is probably indestructable as long as it *never* goes in the dishwasher and you never use oven cleaner on it. i have many pieces of both. i like the calphalon ok -- it wasn't my first pick, all clad was. but we do have some nice pieces which i use because because all clad doesn't. and my stainless steel pots are stick less than the calphalon. one of the decisive factors for me was those damn handles on the calphalon get HOT. i have the scars to prove that i don't always remember that...
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