Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
cbread

Viking cookware

Recommended Posts

I'm looking at upgrading my saucepans and a few other items. I'm trying to sort out my possibilities.

I'll probably do the upgrade gradually, a pot at a time, especially the first pan, so if I end up unhappy with whatever choice, I'll suffer just one pan.

I'd include AllClad in my search, but the handles... I know lots of people like AllClad but the handles seem user unfriendly to my hands. I just can't see myself subjecting myself to those handles.

Maybe I'll end up springing for Falk or similar copper. But, before I just go there with no further ado, I find myself wondering about Viking. I never hear anything about Viking, and it does look like solid quality cookware. So, what do people think, other than the obvious fact that it's expensive? Were cost less an issue, what would the verdict be? Is it the peer of AllClad with a surcharge, or better or less good as a cooking implement?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually, that was a topic on Gardenweb a while back, with speculation that it is manufactured for Viking by Demeyere based on the knowledge that Viking cookware is made in Belgium and is 7 ply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm pretty sure it's demmeyere, and it's very good, and for the most part way overpriced. They make one roasting pan that I had to have because it was the only one made in a shape that I like, but that's it.

I'd reconsider the all clad. The handles feel uncomfortable when I'm playing with them, but I've never once even noticed the handle on my a.c. frying pan while actually using it. I think handles are largely irrelevant, as long as they stay attached after long hard use, which cannot be assumed with many brands.


Notes from the underbelly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  ...  I'd reconsider the all clad. The handles feel uncomfortable when I'm playing with them, but I've never once even noticed the handle on my a.c. frying pan while actually using it. I think handles are largely irrelevant, as long as they stay attached after long hard use, which cannot be assumed with many brands.
I'm most concerned about sauce pans, where I will be pouring things out and trying to empty water out but keep veggies in etc. In that case, the handle gets important. I have some sort of issue with arm / wrist where major lifting and twisting a fully laden pot one handed can sometimes leave me in some discomfort for weeks. Not agony by any means, but just enough discomfort I cannot and should not ignore it. It's odd, I can push garden stones around that have to be several hundreds of pounds, but handling a five or ten pound pot leaves me with a sore arm... I think I want a handle that doesn't threaten to make things any more problematic. Aside from the odd scalloped out top of the AllClads, they are awfully narrow and seem to provide less leverage for twisting them to dump liquids.

But given your urging, I'll take another look.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you tried them during actual cooking? If you know anyone who has them, something to try is to handle them with a towel wrapped around the handle.

The skinny stainless handles stay cool enough enough much of the time that you don't have to do this ... but any pan that's been at the back of a hot stove, in the oven, or on high heat for a while will need a towel. The AC handles grab onto a towel really well. Some of my other pans feel more likely to pivot and spill when held like a towel, even though they're a bit more comfortable to hold bare-handed.

If it's still an issue, there are some pans that have a big, tubular handle. Some of the nicer commercial brands might offer pans with this and with clad construction.


Notes from the underbelly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It sounds like you're sensitive to torque, in other words the stress of twisting motions. If that is the case, my feeling is that what you want are wide, flat handles. These give a really good grip so that when you have to tilt the pot to pour something out you experience the least possible strain. (You might also want to use two hands for your pouring motions.) Ironically, when it comes to handles, my favorite handle shapes tend to be on some of the cheapest saucepans where, essentially, they just attach a flat piece of metal. For example:

http://www.bigtray.com/productdetails.asp?...=sauce+pan&rn=1


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Further on the issue of handles... one of the advantages of traditional handles (such as you see on this piece, for example) is that you can grab the handle close to the body of the pan and brace the remainder of the handle against the underside of your forearm. This tranfers the load further up your arm and makes lifting heavy, full pans a lot easier on the hand and wrist.


--

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Further on the issue of handles... one of the advantages of traditional handles (such as you see on this piece, for example) is that you can grab the handle close to the body of the pan and brace the remainder of the handle against the underside of your forearm.  This tranfers the load further up your arm and makes lifting heavy, full pans a lot easier on the hand and wrist.

I have the all-clad pan (many, many of them) and that is exactly the technique that I do. Grab close to the pan and rest the handle on the bottom of my forearm. It works like a dream.

I almost always use a potholder as well. I just found these from OXO and love them!

http://www.amazon.com/Oxo-Grips-Silicone-H...t/dp/B000A0IKM0

The silicone adds a little bit of 'stickiness' and that makes the whole dumping process much easier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another thing that's useful is to get a saucepan with tapered sides and perhaps even a pouring spout. Every little bit helps.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the responses and info. I will look again at AC and also at the commercial pots with tubular handles.

I find it interesting that no-one has spoken up in vigorous affirmation of Viking cookware. I kind of take that as saying - good as AllClad, but not worth the added cost beyond AllClad.

It makes me suspect Viking's cookware sales must be pretty low. I would have thought their customer base would have been big enough to get at least one actual user reporting in. Not that a small customer base impugns the quality, but it may speak to the economics of price vs quality.

I definitely am looking at how I handle pots when I lift and pour. Any heavy pot where I can use two hands gets lifted with two hands.

Thanks for all the input!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

cbread,

Just some food for thought. Usability and comfort aside, there are two other reasons I really like All-Clad. One, it's made in Pennsylvania (except for some specials from China (!) that I've seen at Williams-Sonoma during the holidays). If you do go with All-Clad, make sure you get pans made here in the US. There is a difference.

Second, their warranty is fantastic. The pans really hold up well but if you do have a problem, they will replace it. They sent me a new non-stick frying pan this year when my 10+ year-old one just wouldn't stay non-stick any more. Since I originally bought it, they've changed their non-stick formula, but out of 3 non-stick frying pans that's the only one that's given me any trouble.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Further on the issue of handles... one of the advantages of traditional handles (such as you see on this piece, for example) is that you can grab the handle close to the body of the pan and brace the remainder of the handle against the underside of your forearm. 

I just stumbled onto some of Mauviel's m'cook pans ... they're made of clad stainless and aluminum, but have the same massive iron handles as the copper pan slkinsey linked. They're lighter and cheaper than copper (though still fairly heavy and pricey).


Notes from the underbelly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have one Viking saucepan, which I got for free. I think it's a great piece of cookware -- better than All-Clad, in my opinion. The All-Clad handles are a deal-breaker for me, and I've never understood what A-C has against pouring lips. Having said that, for the money, there's stuff as good or better out there. I have a torque problem, too (large hands and skinny wrists), and I really like the oval handles on Sitram Profiserie and Demeyere Apollo.


Dave Scantland
Executive director
dscantland@eGstaff.org
eG Ethics signatory

Eat more chicken skin.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have one Viking saucepan, which I got for free. I think it's a great piece of cookware -- better than All-Clad, in my opinion. The All-Clad handles are a deal-breaker for me, and I've never understood what A-C has against pouring lips. Having said that, for the money, there's stuff as good or better out there. I have a torque problem, too (large hands and skinny wrists), and I really like the oval handles on Sitram Profiserie and Demeyere Apollo.

Can you say what makes the Viking pan better than AC? Is it the handles or more/other things?

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that the Viking pots and pans are better than All-Clad S/S as viking is a bit thicker and, to me, distributes larger amounts heat better. I've noticed this with proper sauteing and searing. I can't say too much about the other All-Clad lines as they are a bit different in materials and thickness (such as the Williams Sonoma Professional Brushed S/S All-Clad, MCII, Copper-Core, etc.)

The Mauviel m'cook is the same thickness as the viking pots and pans (at least according to available info online) I am interested in acquiring a pot or two if I can find a good price for this line of cookware.

As for price...I've always bought Viking from ebay for much lower prices that those listed at online and brick and mortar stores.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Can you say what makes the Viking pan better than AC?  Is it the handles or more/other things?

Thanks!

Scout_21 has pretty much covered it, though those all all my observations, and not based on actual numbers and such. I can't stand All-Clad handles; the Viking's is much better. (To clarify, though, Viking doesn't have pour lips on their saucepans, either.)

A new(ish) brand I like more than Viking is the Le Creuset Tri-Ply: decent handles, pouring lips, heavy construction and sometimes-helpful measurement scales etched into the inside of the pot. It's a little hard to find, but it's priced very competitively.


Dave Scantland
Executive director
dscantland@eGstaff.org
eG Ethics signatory

Eat more chicken skin.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A new(ish) brand I like more than Viking is the Le Creuset Tri-Ply: decent handles, pouring lips, heavy construction and sometimes-helpful measurement scales etched into the inside of the pot. It's a little hard to find, but it's priced very competitively.

I see that Amazon carries some of the Le Creuset Tri-Ply line, if you can't find it locally. Haven't tried one (I have all that All-Clad!), but they sure looked nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hadn't given any thought to Le Creuset Tri-Ply.

Positive commentary here and looking at Sitram's website made me wonder if I should include them in my "universe" of potential cookware. There seem to be quite a few people who think Sitram Profisserie is seriously good cookware.

Does anyone have experience with Sitram Profisserie, Le Creuset Tri-Ply And Viking who could shed light on them?

I am especially interested in the beefiness factor and how it translates into even and dependable cooking. It appears the handles on the Profisserie would make me happy.

I'll have to take a serious look at Le Creuset Tri-Ply. I had pretty much ignored it.

I'm really grateful for all the time and experience people are sharing here. Thanks!!!!


Edited by cbread (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All-Clad's handles really annoy me, too. I can vouch for Gourmet Standard's tri-ply; my saute pan saucepan have comfortable, convex handles and excellent performance. I think they're worth a look, especially considering the price difference. Reviews on Amazon and at Cook's Illustrated seem to agree that the price/performance is pretty great.

I guess on a gas stove the thicker handles might transfer more heat, farther out along the handle; my cooktop is induction so I wouldn't know.

Gourmet Standard manufactures in China, in case it matters to you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know about the profiserie line, and there are great differences in the quality of the sitram lines, but I've used the 'catering' line, with flat handles for 20 years. I'd say I like them a bit better than all-clad stainless, though I cook with a mixture of the 2. Zabars used to sell them at better prices, but you can see them on Bridge's site:

http://www.bridgekitchenware.com/browse.cf...ance/2,210.html

I got most of mine in France in the days when the dollar was quite strong against the franc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have Sitram pans to use on my induction burners and they work beautifully.

Most of my "regular" cookware is copper so I did have to get pans that would work on the induction burners and found them at a local store. They survived being hauled around, used by inexperienced helpers, dropped on concrete and held up well.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I appreciate everyone's information, thought and experience. I'm getting closer to having things sorted out.

No one near me sells Sitram, so I hope for your help to get a feel for what they are like. I have looked on the web at various bits of info on Sitram's Profisserie, and "Catering" lines, and cannot tell if the clad portion is just the base, or whether the clad portion extends all the way up the rim. I'm looking for clad all the way up. This page: http://frieling.com/products/cookware/profiserie makes it look like it's just sandwitched on the bottom on Profisserie. This: http://frieling.com/products/cookware/catering makes it look similar, copper sandwitching on the "Catering" line.

The Mauviel M'cook makes me suspect it is closely related to the Viking line - both extol the benefits of a seven layer construction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A bit late here, but I'll speak up for the Viking line. Over the past 6 - 8 months, I've been adding one or two pieces a month, all purchased from eBay at pretty hefty discounts.

I'm probably going to an induction cooktop soon, with an upcoming major kitchen remodel, and the old Cuisinart stuff with aluminum discs just had to go. Cuisinart seemed like a seemed like a good idea about 15 years ago.

I'm looking up (all hanging!) at 4 Viking fry pans (two non-stick), and perhaps five sauce pans. Also, two stock pots. Mixed in are a few All-Clad stainless pieces (all hold a magnet and can be used on induction), and a few old saute pans that still have to go, and I'm a happy camper.

Very even heating, easy to clean, a notch above. I'm now using them on a Dacor glass cooktop.

It's a lot of money, but you'll have them forever. Try a piece or two, and sell it for almost what you paid if you don't like it. Used Viking is scarce!


Carpe Carp: Seize that fish!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Update - But first - a note of thanks for everyone who has made the effort to pass along their experiences to me.

I noticed Mauviel's M'cook line, along with Viking's, both tout seven ply stainless over aluminum construction. I have assumed they are made from the same material - possibly at the same manufacturor. Given the positive responses about Viking (other than price) I began to suspect the Mauviel M'cook would be worth considering.

Based on my hope that the actual pots would have identical cooking performance, I ordered a M'cook stainless saute from www.jbprince.com who have the best retail prices I was able to find. I really liked that pan and subsequently found a couple more Mauviel stainless pans at auction sites, and bought them.

Very interesting result - three pans, all of which have Mauviel M'cook stainless pot bodies, but three completely different handles. One, cast iron handled came from JBPrince. A brass handled pot and a stainless handled pot each came separately from two different auction sites. All have riveted attachment to the body of the pan.

I have only had those pans three or four weeks or so. The cast iron handle is my preference; the cast iron handle seems to stay a little cooler. And it feels a little larger and fits my hand better. The brass handle is drop dead gorgous but gets hot quite quickly. The stainless is beautiful and is middling in it's time to heat up.

I am presuming www.jbprince.com obtains some sort of commercial version of M'cook stainless and that the other versions with their slicker stainless and brass handled pots are intended more for homeowner use, given what looks like a greater emphasis on esthetics over function. The stainless clad bodies seem all the same, so the cooking properties should be identical.

Given prices at JBPrince it appeared a win-win situation.


Edited by cbread (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The m'cook pans look nice, but I wonder just how much nicer they are in practice than all clad. JB Prince has the lowest prices I can find. For a 10" fry pan they want practically double the price of a typical discounted all clad equivalent.

In fact, their prices are about what I paid for Mauviel's copper pans just a few years ago!


Notes from the underbelly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...