buying a dutch oven

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by halmstad, May 26, 2010.

  1. halmstad

    halmstad

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    i'm looking to buy a dutch oven and wondering what other people have and if they're happy with them, both good and bad reviews please. i know that le creuset is the best, but they are well out of my price range. i've heard that lodge logic makes a great dutch oven for a relatively cheap price. this is an important investment that should pretty much last forever. we do a lot of cooking at home. any ideas?
     
  2. gunnar

    gunnar

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    well I would say so long as its cast iron you should be okay. After a brief look at the two choices I see no reason not to get the LodgeLogic. Save over a hundred bucks and have a great day.
     
  3. schmoozer

    schmoozer

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    You can read my review of the Le Creuset oven here:

    http://www.cheftalk.com/products/le-creuset-enameled-cast-iron-5-1-2-quart-round-french-oven-red

    While Le Creuset is an excellent choice, so is Staub.  I now have both and am extremely satisfied with both brands.  There is another French brand,Fontignac, that is less expensive and, IMO, better quality than the Chinese-made pots.  Prices are somewhat comparable, and better in many instances when shopping at Bed, Bath, & Beyond and using their 20% off coupon.  I have heard that Fontignac is made by, or are a subsidiary of, Staub, but I have not verified that.

    http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?order_num=-1&SKU=119833&RN=787

    http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?order_num=-1&SKU=119832&RN=787
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2010
    gjcwalker likes this.
  4. willie24

    willie24

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              After 35 years of valiant service we finally put our Le Creuset dutch oven out to pasture ( they make a nice planter ) and had to replace it. I priced a 5 1/2 qt. Le Creuset at Amazon for $232. I'm sorry, I can't justify spending that much for a dutch oven no matter how good it is. We looked at a couple of more economical ovens - the 6 qt. Lodge cast iron enamel coated ($50) and the 6.5 qt. Tramontina cast iron enamel coated ($34). Since we already have some Lodge cast iron skillets and are very happy with them we decided on the Lodge and bought one at Walmart. I've used it weekly for the last three months and so far so good. I took the metal knob off my old Le Creuset and replaced the plastic composition one on the Lodge eliminating the high temperature problem.

             I would not argue that there's a difference in quality and that we'll come close to getting the same amount of use out of the Lodge as we would the Le Creuset. Then again with the money you'll save you can replace it several times over the years and still have enough to buy some nice steaks and a bottle of your favorite wine.

           Willie
     
  5. schmoozer

    schmoozer

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  6. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    Why replace something continually over the years when you could buy a Creuset and have it last a lifetime?  I'll never understand this logic... buy a $10 item 10 times over or a $100 item once.  At least you'll save yourself the gas money from going to the store 9 extra times for the cheap item.
     
  7. angela09

    angela09

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    While I agree that you should choose quality over price, I don't see any difference between the Lodge and the LC dutch oven.  (for what it's worth, Lodge's website claims the pots are made in America, not China.)

    I love my Lodge dutch oven, and can't really understand how the LC would be any better.  I got mine on the advice of my mother-in-law who, has had both and actually had her LC break in half.  Granted, the LC has a metal knob.  I haven't had any trouble with the plastic knob, though, and I can't see paying $100+ extra just to have a metal knob on the lid, especially since most of my dutch oven cooking occurs at low oven temperatures anyway. Even better, pay a few extra bucks and spring for a Lodge enamel pot with a metal knob -- I just looked at their website, and they now sell them.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2010
  8. schmoozer

    schmoozer

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    Last edited: May 26, 2010
  9. ishbel

    ishbel

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    I have a LOT of Le Creuset ware.  Full set of saucepans and quite a few casserole dishes of various sizes, griddle, omelette pans and lasagne type pans.  I've had most of them for over 30 years - they are still as good as new!

    I find the saucepans quite heavy to use nowadays, and so have gifted them to one of my children. But the casseroles and other dishes and the saute/griddle/omelette/crepes will be with my till I die!
     
  10. angela09

    angela09

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    I stand corrected, schmoozer, thanks.  I'm still really happy with my lodge, though.  We'll see if I still love it after 30 years.
     
  11. gjcwalker

    gjcwalker

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    I also have Le Creuset and Staub, and I agree, the Fontignac product (yes, a subsidiary of Staub) is excellent. I would rate it as a bit better than the current breed of Le Creuset and not quite as good as Staub. The only Le Creuset that I have are some terrines which do their jobs excellently, but they lack the refined finish of the Staub. All are much better products than the enameled Lodge which I experimented with a few years ago. I also had a Chinese made product that came out under Mario Batali's name, and it disintegrated within a month of regular use.

    My big ovens are well kept old Descoware from the 1960s, holding up exquisitely. When the day comes that I need to replace them it will likely be with Fontignac.
     
  12. bhtoad

    bhtoad

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    I've been cooking with cast iron dutch ovens since childhood and have nothing but good things to say about Lodge. (I own 4 DO's, 2 camp, 2 regular oven models).  If an oven can stand up to decades of abuse by teenage boy scouts without missing a beat, I doubt a home or pro chef would accidentally damage one.  The downside is they need some care.  Proper seasoning, cleaning and storage are key and I don't know how many folks are into the maintenance side of cast iron these days.  But, the non-enameled ovens are much more versatile, performing well in a regular oven or a campfire.

    The enameled ovens I've used (LC) are really nice and easy to use, but I choke on the price.  (I do like to go to William Sonoma and drool over the LC display, though...)  I was very wary of the Lodge enameled ovens as they are made in China, but they do independent testing for lead and cadmium and their products meet FDA and California standards. 

    If I was purchasing a new oven based on price and performance, I'd choose a Lodge oven.  If I needed to have a big recognized brand name with a wide choice of colors, and I knew I'd never be tempted to toss it in a campfire or on a grill, I'd go with the LC.
     
  13. maryb

    maryb

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    I have a lodge enameled dutch oven. Fit and finish is good and it performs well. Its a beast to move though /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif
     
  14. gjcwalker

    gjcwalker

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    I concur that the cast iron Lodge Dutch ovens and camp ovens are about the best currently manufactured; at the very least, they are the best that I have encountered. There are applications, however, for which an enameled Dutch oven is irreplaceable, specifically when making highly acidic dishes, the iron not being resistant to acids in the same way that stainless steel or enamel is.

    When evaluating enameled Dutch ovens, the Chinese Lodge had an inferior quality enamel as compared to the Le Creuset and the Staub products. It showed unevenness and bubbling. The products were waranteed and the customer service at Lodge was excellent and I had two items replaced, but over all, I like the Staub product the best.
     
  15. ryan.brosseau1

    ryan.brosseau1

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    I have a lodge logic and it is great, I also have a Kitchenaid and it is total crap. I returned the first one i got because large chunks of enamel were broke off and sitting in the bottom of the box. The replacement has done the same thing only it took 4 or 5 uses. Plus the handle is stupid, it is stainless and gets super hot, as opposed to the plastic everyone else uses that doesn't get hot when used on the stove top. 

    I can say though that have compared my lodge to Le cruset stuff at different stores, the enamel seems to be of considerably better quality on the Le Cruset. Having said that though, the price is right on the lodge if you can get it for less than $50.00 , because I have seen my 6.5 qt at over a $100.00 some places and as little as $30.00 (what i paid). 
     
  16. mamadelbosque

    mamadelbosque

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    I have a couple of lodge's cast iron dutch ovens which I *LOVE*. I haven't yet gotten an enamled dutch oven, though its on the proveribial 'list' :p Someday I'll be rich, and have nothing but lodge cast iron & le crueset pots... Someday... :p
     
  17. brook

    brook

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    LC has sales at its outlet stores about twice a year, once around Christmas and the second time in the summer.The pieces sometimes are "seconds", but the ones I saw tended to be a small scratch or surface nick.  The prices, though still high, are better. It's a good time to buy.
     
  18. eloki

    eloki

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    I bought my dutch oven at Ikea, it's cast iron, cheap & very reliable.  If LC is out of your price range, I strongly recommend the Ikea one (think it hasn't even got a brand name).
     
  19. bscepter

    bscepter

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    i just purchased a staub oval dutch oven and am extremely happy with it. i almost bought a LC, but i liked the staub's "basting spikes," which made total sense to me. plus, the staub just seemed a little more substantial.
     
  20. siduri

    siduri

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    I got a no brand (really, there was NO brand) of dutch oven, pot and two small frying pans 30years ago, when i started being into cooking and they were already very cheap and then on sale at some store (cambridge coffee tea and spice house,  i think, if anyone remembers it - it was so sad when it closed).  It was NO brand.  It is still with me now, a few chips on the top edge, nothing worse. 

    In any case, if you drop a cast iron pot on something really hard it can crack.  Do you want to risk it with a 250 dollar pot?

    I think buying a cheaper brand, even if it is worse, and in my case it wasn;t, is sort of like people who can;t afford to buy a car with cash will pay in installments.  I couldn;t afford, in any case, to dish out that much money, i;d think twice before getting an appliance for that, certainly not for a pot.  Much as i love them.  If i had that kind of money i would buy it, for sure, but spending 50 is already a lot and I'd just consider it as if i were buying a good one in installments.  And... i might just be lucky like i was with the first one. 

    Didn't i see that in some store, don;t remember which, but where all the american wedding presents come from (not bowl and board, not bed and bath, but something and somthing - escapes me now) there is a cast iron alternative to lecreuset, with an italian name (it's not italian, they don;t have them here. but someone;s last name) for less, not sure how less.