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Is All Clad Worth It? This is the question that people ask when they see the astronomical price. Relative to your general cookware manufacturer like T-Fal and Cuisinart, it is considerably more expensive. In fact, one pan can cost as much as the whole set of cookware from the other manufacturer.
Different type of Consumer
Whether it is worth it or not really depends on the type of consumer you are. Most American consumer like to replace their stuff every 2 or 3 year. There is a common assumption that new is better, but in reality that is not the case. Due to capitalism and increase cost of manufacturing, it is the best interest of manufacturer to find way to cut corner. They will either remove some of the rivets or make the pan lighter. The consumer in this category usualy do not pay attention to these detail. What they do is just buy a cheap pan for around 20-30 dollar. After a few years, they will replace it. What they don’t know is that the old pan that is 10-20 year old is probably built to a higher standard than the new one.
The second type of consumer, which is usually the niche market, focuses on quality over quantity. They find things that will last a lifetime even if it cost 2-3 times more than their competition. A lifetime guarantee offer by companies like All Clad reassures this consumer that their investment is safe. Durability aside, they also receive a better performing pan overall. So the benefit that they gain from these cookware is that they are receiving higher quality and more durability. If you factor in the the amount of time you have to replace cheap pan, a pan by all clad will cost the same.
Why is All Clad So Expensive
There are various reason why All Clad is so expensive. Manufacturing, build quality, marketing, performance all plays into this category.
Where is All Clad Made
One of the reason why All Clad is so expensive is that their mainline cookware is made in America. The labor and manufacturing of cookware is a expensive process. While All Clad do make some products in China, the prices of those pans are reduced accordingly. This goes to show you how they factor in the cost of labor for their cookware.
Build Quality and Performance
The Build Quality of All Clad cookware is outstanding. They look like a beautifully crafted piece of art. And the durability of these pans are second to none. You are buying something that will last you a lifetime. Performance wise, they are also some of the best performing cookware in the market. They have many different line to suit different needs. d3 for the general market, d5 for searing and copper core for the premier cooking enthusiast.
Sadly, this is one of the reason why its also so expensive. The amount of marketing that went into the cookware these past ten year should be massive. They employed the likes of thomas keller to promote their brand. For this reason, their cookware also rise in price. I remember when All Clad was a lot more affordable than it is now. Whether you think if all clad is worth it or not is dependent on you.
Is All Clad Worth it to me?
I collector cookware so I am biased. However, my bias is towards french copper cookware manufacturer like Mauviel. But even then, I can appreciate the performance and balance that All Clad provide. While I personally think for the same price, Copper cookware is better. However, I also see pans from All Clad to be around 50-100 dollar cheaper than Mauviel. This is where it gets to a point of diminishing return. You do not really need highest end cookware, you just need something that works. If I was an average consumer, I would buy All Clad simply for the durability of its pan. America Test Kitchen constantly run abuse test on these pans and they always find that they outlast the competition. In this instance, All Clad is worth it.
Is All Clad Non Stick Pans Worth It
This is the area where I would say that All Clad is not worth it. The life of a non stick pan is tied with its non stick coating. It simply does not make any sense to shell out hundreds of dollar for non stick pans. After one or two years, the teflon coating will wear out and you need to toss the pan. You can try to get a warranty but more than likely they will say that you abused your pan. I recommend that you just get a cheap 10-30 tfal pan for non stick cooking duties. This way, you wont get buyer remorse when it break.
Buy All Clad if you want a stainless steel cookware. If you just want non stick pan, avoid All Clad, you are better off with T-Fal.
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