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Buying Pot(s)

Anyone out there have any experience with Wolfgang Puck™ Cookware? Tired of using my giant 16-qt. stock pot for soup experiments, I'd been looking for a sturdy, medium-weight, medium-sized vessel and came across the WP 18/10 Stainless 8-qt. Bistro Stock Pot yesterday for $24.99--a bargain compared to most cookware I've ever purchased.

It has a nice look and feel (as in, the handles are acceptably designed and the weight is just right) and it has a tri-ply aluminum-encapsulated bottom ("for even heat distribution"), which in theory sounds great, but is different from any other pieces I own that have bottoms--even of different materials--ground seamlessly into the construction of the pot.

I bought the pot and decided to come home and research it before taking it out of the packaging. I found mixed reviews online--people either loved it or hated it. I don't wanna be a hater, so if you know something about this pot that would influence my decision to keep it, speak up. I'd rather return it to the store a happy camper than have it warp or corrode after its second use.

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yesthatjill
Jun. 8th, 2006 03:57 pm (UTC)
I have no particular experience with the particular brand, but I do know cookware.

#1: 18/10 stainless is 18% Cr, 10% Ni. Good stuff with high acid resistance. So put tomatoes in your soup with glee and elan!

#2: Stainless steel, because it has so much alloying material in it, doesn't transfer heat very well. A pot made of all stainless usually has 'hot spots'.

#3: Aluminum does transfer heat well, so the tri-ply aluminum bottom will transfer heat along the bottom of the soup pot. Which, for soups, which you want to boil bottom-up instead of from the sides-in, is a good thing. What you probably aren't used to is a thicker bottom than the sides of the pot.

#4: If you can pick up the pot when it is full of water, then it's the right size. ;)

#5: Does it go into the dishwasher?

Oh, I saw the reviews on HSN, and you know what 'they' say: more people will complain about a product than those who will praise it.
yarbiedoll
Jun. 8th, 2006 06:03 pm (UTC)
Yep. I picked the pot for reasons 1-4, which are excellent points for any pot-buyers. I handwash pots, so dishwasher tolerance is low on my list.

I'm just wary of this type of bottom. What I'm used to are stainless pots with heavy aluminum bottoms and seamless construction on the inside andoutside. This one is obviously stainless throughout (no inside seams or tell-tale lines of delineation between materials), with an aluminum overfitting thing on the bottom. My suspicion is that the overfitting thing is a cheaper way of manufacturing a pot with the benefits of an aluminum bottom, and that--depending on how the two metals are attached/in contact, there could be some warping that occurs.

I also took into account that the people who wrote glowing reviews on the HSN website also seemed to have been non-stick users in the past. Well, of course they had a better experience with stainless! There's no comparison (well, OK, for some things I prefer copper), in my book. However, I like the size and weight of the pot and I adore Wolfgang, so I'm gonna give his product the benefit of the doubt and put it to the test. For $25, if i get a decent pot out of it, it will be money well-spent. And if not, I'll have a designated vessel I can melt paraffin in for crafting.

Thanks for the input!

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yarbiedoll
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