If you are willing to pay a large sum for your pots and pans, the All Clad Stainless Steel Copper Core cookware is probably not far from your buying decision. It is solidly crafted in an American manufacturing facility, which is one of the reasons why people are willing to pay for this particular cookware. Being USA-made certainly helps with its reputation and association with quality. That being said, is the All Clad Copper Core 5-ply bonded cookware worth the extremely high price? This review intends to find that out.
All Clad Stainless Steel Copper Core Cookware Review
There are two popular sets that are available for the Copper Core line. The 10-piece set (model no. 600822) consists of the following pots and pans:
- 2-quart covered saucepan
- 3-quart covered saucepan
- 3-quart covered saute pan
- 8-quart covered stockpot
- 8-inch fry pan
- 10-inch fry pan
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For the All Clad 6000-7 SS Copper Core 7-piece set, you will not have the 3-quart covered saucepan and 8-inch fry pan.
This cookware is of a 5-ply bonded design. The combination of the different layers is a All Clad innovation and unique in its design that the company has claimed that no other cookware can match the performance standards of its product. The 5-ply consists of a copper core sandwiched between 2 aluminum layers with a 18/10 stainless steel cooking surface for the interior and magnetic stainless steel for the exterior.
Copper is known for its superior heat conductivity and combined with the aluminum layers, the cookware is designed for rapid and even heat distribution. The stainless steel interior provides an ideal cooking surface that does not react to food and easy to clean. The magnetic exterior makes it induction stove compatible.
The lids and handles are also made of stainless steel. The long stick handles are riveted to the pans and stay cool on the stove top. The handles on the lids are of a loop design and easy to grip. The edges of the pots and pans are rolled for drip-free pouring. The pieces are oven-safe up to 800°F.
For the appearance, the pots and pans have a exposed copper band that is distinctive and adds to the elegance of the set. Hand-washing is recommended for the Copper Core product line. The manufacturer also offers a lifetime warranty against defects for your purchase.
Should You Buy The All Clad Copper Core Set?
- High quality – For the price, you would expect it to be well-crafted with a solid feel. The All Clad Copper Core cookware does not disappoint in this respect. The pieces are heavy and feels durable. The 10-inch fry pan alone weighs about 3 lbs, more than double the weight of a similar-sized T Fal Ultimate copper bottom fry pan.
- Even heating – The pans heats up evenly with no hot spots. It also gets super hot quickly due to the heat responsiveness of copper that you don’t need to turn up your stove to high to get things going. There are buyers who even claimed that their food taste better cooking with the Copper Core cookware.
- Easy to clean – The food won’t stick to the pan if you know how to cook with stainless steel. Hence, the Copper Core pans will be easy to clean and maintain.
- Long-lasting – These stainless steel pieces will be much more durable than say, ceramic cookware. Rather than having to replace your pots and pans every 2 to 3 years, investing in more expensive pieces upfront could save you the hassle and money in the long run. This All Clad cookware has a lifetime warranty against defects, which means you most probably don’t need to buy another set for next few decades.
- Expensive – The 7 -piece All Clad 6000-7 costs about $900 at the time of this review. The 10-piece set sells for close to $1,250. It is a hefty upfront investment when you can get a very nice stainless steel set for less than $500. The Calphalon Tri-Ply 13 -piece set sells for about $400 while you can get the 10-piece Calpahlon AccuCore with 5 layers and a copper core for less than $600 at times.
- Thin copper core – We have seen this being discussed in forums whereby people are skeptical whether the thin copper core actually makes a big difference to the performance of the cookware. The general consensus is that the thinness does not justify the much higher price that you need to pay for this product line. The copper core should give you faster heat transfer but if it is too thin, it could also have poorer heat retention compared to a good quality tri-ply piece.
- Uncomfortable handle – The design of All Clad handles can certainly be improved because there are many users who find them uncomfortable to grip. The groove in the middle means the sides pressed into your palm when you lift the pan. And when the pan is filled with food, the weight adds to the discomfort.
In terms of the All Clad Copper Core vs D5, the difference is the absence of a copper layer in the latter. Instead, it is replaced with a stainless steel core. The All Clad D5 is about $450 cheaper at the time of writing. We doubt there is a major difference to the performance of the two, but if we have to guess the Copper Core would be more heat responsive in that it heats up faster while the D5 would have better heat retention capabilities.
So, do we recommend a buy for the All Clad Stainless Steel Copper Core cookware? Unfortunately, no. We don’t think the high price is justifiable when its cooking performance wouldn’t be too far off from the cheaper All Clad Stainless Steel Tri-Ply or the All Clad Master Chef 2 series. The cheaper sets are also made in the USA if that is an important consideration in your buying decision. If you want to stick to the All Clad family, go with the Cooper Core if you want better heat responsiveness and the option of being induction compatible. Otherwise, the choices available to you at this high price are aplenty.
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