Mauviel, Demeyere or Bourgeat?

Discussion in 'Cooking Equipment Reviews' started by jbor, Apr 6, 2010.

  1. jbor

    jbor

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    I'm looking to upgrade my current crappy cookware, and have been doing a lot of reading on the subject. I'm not an overly accomplished cook, but I'm working on it and I do appreciate getting the best, I'd much rather shell out a bit more to get something that will please me for years to come than buying something that's just good enough and will leave me wondering.

    I'm in love with the thick Mauviel copper, but it's likely I'll get induction later on, so that is out of the question (I currently have a glass plated stove). I'm not necessarily looking to stick with one brand, but I'll let your feedback decide :)

    Speaking of which I much appreciate the wealth of knowledge here. It has been a joy spending way too many hours digging through the forums :)

    Now, the first thing I realized is that All-Clad is not all it is made up to be, and I've ruled it out (a lot more expensive here in Europe as well..). I've narrowed the list to the mentioned three brands Mauviel, Demeyere and Bourgeat, and would love some feedback and recommendations. I'm heavily leaning towards stainless clad.

    What are your thoughts regarding the three brands, which line should I choose, and what would you do in my place?
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  2. french fries

    french fries

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    Every Demeyere pan I've ever lifted was too heavy. I own both Bourgeat and Mauviel cookware, and love both. Here in the U.S. Bourgeat is a bit less expensive and works great. If you can go to a store and handle them both, you'll see which one feels more comfortable. If not, judge from the photos and pick what feels right. Either way you're buying a really high quality item.
     
  3. jbor

    jbor

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    I wrote Demeyere a while back about the weight, an issue I've read about repeatedly. They never answered, but then again I wouldn't either if I wanted to sell a 5kg! sautepan:
    http://www.cookingstore.nl/demeyere-atlantis-c-4682.html

    I suspect it's with packaging though. My smallish cast iron pan is 2,8 kg and too heavy for comfort.

    So I'll probably get Mauviel. But since I'm going to New York in a couple of months I'll wait and handle both of them before deciding. May I ask what your impression of Mauviel is?
     
  4. french fries

    french fries

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    The only Mauviel cookware I own is a stainless steel roasting pan. It's absolutely beautiful but I find the inside hard to clean. I'm not sure if they use the same finish inside their pans or not.

    Bourgeat I own their carbon steel pans, so again can't really comment on their other pans.

    Handling is the best way to decide, as you will feel the weight, see the shape, feel the handle, etc... Best of luck!
     
  5. cstanford

    cstanford

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    All Clad is the most overrated cookware on Planet Earth.  Slow pans, racing pans - crap is all over the map.  It's basically become a department store/TV show brand.  I've worked in my share of kitchens and never saw much 3-ply clad stuff of any ilk. 

    If you go copper consider traditional tin-lined copper.  Nothing else has the suppleness of heat exchange of tin-lined copper.  Stainless steel is a lousy conductor of heat.  If you go stainless steel lined copper then find out who makes the thinnest SS lining and get that.  I don't think Bourgeat even offers a tin-lined option which is a shame for a French company of that size and reputation not to carry tin lined Cu.
     
  6. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Ummmmmm.........

    Tin has a VERY low melting point, somewhere around 350 F.  It's common knowledge that you SHOULD NOT use tin lined cookware to saute or roast with, as it will melt off.  Tin will also wear very quickly, and will need to be re-tinned periodically.

    Please consider these facts.
     
  7. ferryman

    ferryman

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    You need to make a decision!  If you plan to use induction in the future, I highly recommend purchasing Demeyere.  This product was designed for induction although it performs on other energy sources excellently. The key to induction is determining how evenly the cookware's surface performs; hotspots are unacceptable as you will discover.  I have used both Demeyere and AllClad stainless on an induction cooktop in the US and am not disappointed; the Demeyere was a touch more efficient, but the AllClad price was a buy for me.

    If you plan to go gas or resistance-electric, Mauviel copper is suberb.  I recommend the stainless interior due to the long-term maintenance issues that tinned interiors can present.  This cost/benefit ratio must be determined by you as no one else can say precisely what works financially for you.
     
  8. indianwells

    indianwells

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    I have a Mauviel copper and stainless steel curved splayed 3qt saute pan and I absolutely love it. So easy to clean and a joy to use.
     
  9. cstanford

    cstanford

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    Ummmmmm, FoodPump, the melting point of Tin is 449.47 degrees Fahrenheit to be exact.

    If there's a concern, very hard searing can be done in a 14" Matfer Bourgeat carbon steel pan that costs around fifty bucks, delivered.  Don't necessarily have to throw the baby out with the bath water.  A perfectly sufficient Maillard reaction occurs at less than 450* F (around 310* F) and too much heat produces acrylamide which is unhealthy.  One can certainly saute' in tin lined copper - though perhaps not with mindless abandon, burner turned up to the max.  But Cu heats so well there's no need for a maxed out 35,000 BTU HOB to drive the pan.

    Otherwise, I guess somebody ought to tell the folks at E. Dehillerin to pull all the tin lined copper ("tradition of the French kitchen") off the shelves:

    http://www.e-dehillerin.fr/en/heavy-duty-copper-lined-with-tin.php
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  10. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Silly me....

    It's just that I have been told this fact-oid by countless employers, Culinary instructors, sales reps, heck it was even a question on my apprentice's exam. 

    Many places in Europe still have tin lined copper, but it's used for serving /presentation dishes only.  Put one on the stove and you'd get a whack from the Chef, and if you did it again, you'd be asked to leave.  I have personally witnessed  several employees using tin lined copperware to roast with or saute with  and you could see where the tin melted--perfect pattern of the burner underneath.

    A commercial range will put out a minimum of 25,000 btus.  A household range around 10-17,000 btus.  Not too many places that I know of that will still plate tin, chrome yes, but not tin.

    Hey, it's your pot, your choice.

    Tinplating  does wear out, all depending on how much you use.  During my apprenticeship (3 yrs) we sent out our copper serving dishes twice to get re-tinned.
     
  11. cstanford

    cstanford

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    Tin lined cookware won't work that great for outfits serving a businessman's lunch in/out in 45 minutes.  Vollrath aluminum probably better for that kind of environment - sold by the dozen - basically throwaway pans.

    Cookware re-tinning services in the U.S.

    http://www.bing.com/search?mkt=en-US&q=cookware+retinning&FORM=IA10BR

    Read this blurb on the Fante's website (add them to the list of re-tinners as well):

    http://www.fantes.com/copper-cookware.html

    "A commercial range will put out a minimum of 25,000 btus. "

    Simmering must have been a real adventure on the ranges you've worked with.  Burn any sauces?
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  12. schmoozer

    schmoozer

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    In what way is All-Clad "not all it is made up to be?"  How would you know if you've not used it?  My All-Clad has given me decades of great service and is still going strong.

     
     
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  13. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Dear C.Stanford.

    I seriously doubt that any place specializing in 45 minute lunches would invest in $200 saute pans.

    But you're right, N.America has a thingee for aluminum cookware. Don't know why, I just plain hate it.  Usually when I start at a new place  I bring along a hammer.  After lunch, I'd take a stack of saute pans and peen all the rivets tight, and then flatten out the bottoms.  Alumimum-num-num warps--badly, the rivets work loose,and it oxidizes, smearing balck oxide crud all over countertops, hands, and uniforms. 

    I hate it, and have no aluminum cookware in my kitchen, nor at home either.

    Carbon steel is pretty good to cook with, but warps almost as badly as aluminum, but at least the handles aren't riveted on....

    But tin melts at 450.F  Big deal?

    Lets put it into context.

    Paper, (if you're a sci-fi fan) burns at Fahrenheit 451

    Refined corn, peanut, sunflower,and safflower oils all have a smoke point of 450 F, pomace olive oil at 460 F, Extra virgin at 468 F, and grapeseed oil at 485 F.

    True, you should never heat oil past it's smoking point, but to saute properly, you got to have it just under the smoking point.

    And that's right around the melting point of tin....

    With tinned ware you have a very thin layer of tin, say 1/32" thick over the entire inner surface of the pan, a very large surface area.

    Not a good scene.

    Maybe I should have been clearer about BTU minimums.

    Garland, Wolf, etc. all put out the basic commerical ranges with 25,000 btu burners.  To upgrade to hotel quality, or spec for higher btu burners, you can go up to 35,000. Chinese Kwali ranges typically put out 100,000 btus.  Great for a'la minute sauting and searing, but very harsh on cookware.

    I am still of the opinion that tinned ware is ideal for presentation, but not for cooking.
     
  14. cstanford

    cstanford

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    I guess I'm just imagining all the great food cooked in all the great restaurants (French, mostly I'll grant) in tin-lined copper.  Maybe I'm just too old.

    My 1970s Larousse entry under "kitchen equipment" shows nuttin' but tin lined copper - saute pans and all.  Must be the difference between well-run French kitchens "of old" and those hiring ham-fisted hacks who don't realize the burners can be turned down and that saute' doesn't automatically mean 500*++.  It doesn't.  Tin lined copper is still a common item with commercial restaurant supply houses in France - and not just presentation pieces.

    A great saute' (the dish) requires excellent ingredients and the full attention of the cook.  It ain't burger frying on Warp 9.

    If you'll probe into the history of your craft a little further you'll find that a lot of sautes are/were done in whole butter (not clarified) which would be tar at the temps it sound like you think are required for the technique.

    I fear we've trained a whole generation of cooks, hell if not two generations, who think pan + meat = the need for blow torch temperatures. 

    Meats will brown fine at a temperature less than the melting point of tin.  And it is/was/can be done even in a busy commercial establishment that has a decent staff on the line. 

    You're a professional.  You don't have to subordinate your judgment to me or anybody else.  Cook it like you want to, with what you want to.  But you can't ignore history unfortunately. 
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2010
  15. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Fair enough.

    But you know as well as I do that prior to the '50's many place in Europe were still cooking with coal fired and even wood fired stoves. I remember working in Zurich in the late '80's and the "freezer" in the pastry kitchen functioned with some kind of a salt water bath, and on my first day I stared bug-eyed at the cream line in a 40 liter milk can in the walk-in.  I had always though cows had square udders and would deposit 1 gallon jugs of milk in the farmers lap every 4 hours.

    And both you and I know that prior to the '70's customers would take the time to sit down, peruse the menu, have a glass or two, and then order.  Heck of a lot more effort went into cooking then, the customer appreciated it, and cooks were actually paid what they're worth.

    Sauting in clarified butter,or fresh butter, english breaded items, large saute items, braises, daubes, poaching, real cooking.  Virtually impossible to make a buck now with that style.

    Stainless ware never really made it into the kitchen untill the 60's, it was far too expensive untill then, and ceramic, glass, tinned ware, and enameled ware was used.

    I'm not saying tinned cookware is bad, just that prior to the 60's the circumstances dictated that tin plating was all that was neccesary.

    But everyone now wants fast a'la minute sauting, larger pieces for two or more hardly ever make it to the menu, "blackening" came and went, "pan seared" came and went, wok style cooking with small, bite sized pieces came and went. and some of what came and went stayed back and is still featured on many menus.  I don't particualrly like cooking at warp 9, but I gotta cook what sells.
     
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  16. cstanford

    cstanford

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    I hear what you're saying.  I'm not entirely convinced that 85* to a 100* is the difference between make or break.  If it has indeed come to that, I'm glad I'm more or less retired.  I've apparently worked in some great kitchens although I didn't always realize it at the time.  Chaos and disorder, stations getting snowed, etc. were by far the exception rather than the rule. 
     
  17. bscepter

    bscepter

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    i wouldn't necessarily buy all my stuff from one vendor. i have tin-lined copper pans for some things, and i have stainless pans for others. i've got a de buyer carbon pan for searing meats and cooking eggs. i have cast iron skillets and dutch ovens for other applications, too. instead of buying one brand, figure out what pan you need and then find out which manufacturer makes the best version.

    btw, i've got a lot of all-clad SS stuff, and it's been fantastic - even heating, solid construction, easy to clean. so i'm not sure what the person who was dissing it was on about.
     
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  18. berndy

    berndy

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     About 30 yearn ago I worked at a Restaurant in Century City CA where every pot and pan was copper on the outside and aluminum on the inside. Overall the best stuff I ever worked with. Have no idea what brand it was.
     
  19. maritsa

    maritsa

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    My father is a chef who worked with all types of equipment. I currently own All Clad Mauviel and Bourgeat. I even have Cusinart and Farberwear. My parents always said "get the tools for the job." So after getting cheap nonstick pans where I kept track of what I used and what equipment did the job for what I replaced them slowly. I used the 1 1/2qt to heat things and make grains like buckwheat. I replaced that with a 2qt Mauviel saucepan because though the interior is stainless and has poor conductivity I often will not be cranking the heat up high. This pan is beautiful doesn't perform fast and well for high heat. For seer and boil fast I got Bourgeat 3qt sauce pan. Much faster at boiling water than Mauviel.

    All Clad makes some amazing pieces. The large 4qt weeknight pan is great for making tacos meat for a small army of people.

    My wish list Bourgeat 9" or 10" and 12" copper fry pans. I think on the gas stovetop that I use they will perform amazingly. Great product!

    I have no care for all stainless steel and all aluminum for reasons stated above. They warp and have poor conductivity.

    Now for Cusinart. They make a 2qt and 3qt soup/sauce pans that have a pour spout. Amazing product for steaming without the use of an inserted pan. And...My soup cooking style isn't "stock" with long tall and narrow chambers. I like wider pot 5qt Calphalon stainless Kitchen Essential does the job beautifully. I worry about it warping over time and if I did find a Bourgeat with such dimensions I would get it.

    As for oven cooking. I have a Lodge 5qt Dutch oven (because that's all that I can afford at the moment). I will make bulger wheat with tomato sauce and let you know how the cast iron affects the taste.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2015
  20. sailorma

    sailorma

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    I have mauviel M cook saute pans and sauce pans at home. They are heavy but work beautifully on gas burners as well as induction. They are built to last a lifetime and only become difficult to clean  if you burn them or go from stove top to oven. The saute pans do not stick if you heat them properly. Mine have the cast dukll iron handles which I  like because you don't have to worry about keeping them shiny.