Today we are going to be checking out a 12 piece cookware set from Anolon. Theis labelled as a gourmet cooking set, so is aimed at cooking enthusiasts. How does it compare to the competition? Read on to find out more.
Anolon has been making cookware for over 20 years, and they have a reputation for making fine quality sets that stand the test of time. As the name implies, this set is designed for frequent users and professionals, so it does come with quite a hefty pricetag. The set comes with a variety of pieces that will allow you to make any kind of meal with ease. Lets have a look at what is included. We get a 2 and 3 quart saucepans with lids, a 4 and a 8 quart stockpots with lids, a 4 quart steamer insert, a 5 quart saute with lid, and then a 10″ pan. The cookware set is made out of hard anodized aluminum and has the trademark “Autograph” nonstick coating. The coating used with this set is the Dupont Autograph, which is labelled a a triple layer coating. Although there isn’t too much technical information available about this nonstick coating, it is widely accepted as being a tough and durable coating.
The cookware itself is primarily matt black in color, and has tempered glass lids. The handles are made out of stainless steel, which is cool to the touch when the cookware is in use. The logo is etched into the handles which looks quite nice. There is no mention of ergonomics on the handles, and they do feel a little on the thin side. This could be an issue with prolonged cooking sessions, but it wasn’t a major problem for us. The handles are riveted on so that is a good feature.
The glass lids have stainless steel bases, and the handles are also made out of stainless steel. There is a bit of weight to the Anolon cookware pieces, and they certainly don’t feel cheap at all. This doesn’t mean they are difficult to work with, and the weight feels very balanced and sturdy. Overall it is a very decent looking set, so we can’t really complain about the design at all.
Like most sets, this one has some features to discuss. The first feature is that it is oven friendly. The set can stand temperatures up to 500F, although we are not sure if this includes the glass lids or not. We imagine the glass lids are likely safe up to 350F at least, since there are no plastic parts on them. Another feature is that the cookware pieces are dishwasher friendly, although they don’t advise it. Now this seems like some contradictory advise. Most nonstick cookware is not dishwasher friendly, and they suggest you avoid dishwashers as they can damage the coating. To advertise the set as dishwasher safe, then advise you not to use the dishwasher is quite odd to say the least. We are still scratching our heads about that piece of manufacturer info.
Confusion aside, we need to see how this cookware set actually performs. First up we took the frying pan for a spin to see how the Anolon cookware coped with a few items. After seasoning the pan with a little olive oil, we threw in a big juicy steak to see how well it browned. The steak was looking great in a few minutes, and it slid about the pan without any issues. The meat was evenly cooked, and it came out very nicely. Next up we tried a few strips of bacon, and a fried egg on the side. Again, both the bacon and the egg came out wonderfully. The bacon was crisp, and the egg was cooked in no time. The pan seemed to hold an even temperature with no signs of hot spots, and the nonstick did what it claimed to do with relative ease.
Next up we decided to try something a bit more messy in the 3 quart saucepan. We decided to make some toffee, which is always a big gooey mess full of sugar. Although this is not a meal of any kind, it is certainly a great test of the nonstick coating! After mixing together our very unhealthy mix of ingredients, the toffee was ready to set in about 15 minutes. We poured it out into the tray, and tried to clean out the remainder of the mess left in the pot. A kitchen towel unfortunately could quite get it all out, but the good news is that a little soapy water and a sponge made short work of the rest of the mess leftover. A few swipes an the pot was looking like new! Even sticky toffee is no match for the cookware, so the coating seems like a winner.
The rest of the cookware has been tested with a large range of different meals and mixtures over the past month, with all the results being quite similar to these first few test we have done. There is no mention of the cookware being metal utensil safe, and we have been using nylon materials thus far. The coating still looks in great shape, with no sign of scratches or peeling at all.
This is a good set of cookware from Anolon. It looks quite nice, and the performance is very good. There are a few features that it is lacking such as support for metal utensils, and it doesn’t have ergonomic handles which is a bit of a letdown. However if you are willing to ignore some of the shortcomings, then it might not be such a bad investment. It comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
- Modern looking set
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Stay cool handles
- Simple to clean
- Nonstick coating works nicely
- Oven friendly
- Claims to be dishwasher friendly, but then advises against it?
- No ergonomic handles
It looks good, and it cooks food very well, but it is a bit too expensive to recommend, especially when it is missing some features found on similar gourmet sets. At the time of writing it costs over $700 for the 12 piece set , which is quite steep considering you could get a far superior set such as the for only a little more.