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Signature Gourmet Cookware 7-Piece Collection
Product number: AHD7S-1
Manufacturer: Dacor
List price: $549
Warranty: Lifetime
Dimensions: 1.75-quart saucepan: 13-1/2" x 6-3/4" x 3-1/2" (lid: 6-3/4" diameter x 2" high); 3-quart saucepan: 16-1/2" x 8-1/4" x 4-3/8" (lid: 8-1/4 diameter x 2-1/2" high); 3.5-quart saucier: 18-1/4" x 10" x 3-3/8" (lid: 10" diameter x 2-1/2" high); skillet: 18-1/4" x 10" x 2-3/8"
Weight: 1.75-quart saucepan: 2 lb 2.9 oz (lid 8.7 oz); 3-quart saucepan: 3 lb 6.9 oz (lid: 11.4 oz); 3.5-quart saucier: 3 lb 9.8 oz (lid: 14.5 oz); skillet 3 lb 8.5 oz
Composition: Stainless steel, aluminum
Made In: China
Type: Cookware
Color: Silver
Apparent goal: kids gift/registry home kitchens restaurants everywhere
Intended audience: novice advanced beginner good home cook gourmet professional
Diet/nutrition: does not apply scary empty promises helpful essential
Green?: not especially neutral mixed blessing earth friendly green!
Innovative: step back standing still progress trendy genius
Problem solving: no better baby steps solid steps giant steps a revelation
Competition: outclassed follower in the pack strong challenger likely champ
Ease of use: impossible frustrating OK simple child's play
Intuitive: Ph.D. required barely logical effortless brilliant
Instructions: missing incomprehensible adequate unnecessary excellent
Quality: cheesy questionable good years of service impressive
Parts to lose: inevitable some/many one-piece self-storing not a problem
Power source: none hands batteries outlet cooktop/oven
Clean-up: nightmare wipe clean soap & water scouring pad dishwasher
Does it work?: not at all adequately well very well perfectly
Availability: airfare required online kitchen store department store supermarket
Easy to open?: impossible maddening tolerable good opens itself
Green?: fills a landfill huge waste passable minimal waste impressive
Time saving: time wasting not really modest substantial huge
Labor saving: less efficient marginal a bit noticeable remarkable
Money saving: money wasted none $ $$ $$$
Beats the old way: worse no change better definitely entirely new
Where will it live?: garage/attic drawer cabinet countertop pot rack
Fulfills ambitions: falls short almost there satisfies exceeds home run
How often used: once/twice ≥daily ≥weekly ≥monthly ≥yearly/holidays
Worth the space?: no does not apply w/unlimited space w/limited space absolutely
Need it?: a luxury discretionary basic equipment for serious cooks get it
Value: ouch! a little pricey worth splurging on the money a deal
Overall rating: skip it fair good very good excellent

Comments: These are the pans against which we measure other pans. They heat evenly, they cook beautifully, they are beautiful, they never let us burn the roux – something we were confident we could do in any pan.

The 7-piece set includes:

  • 1.75-quart saucepan with cover
  • 3-quart saucepan with cover
  • 3.5-quart saucier with cover
  • 9.5" skillet (no cover, but the saucier cover also fits this pan)

The pans are made of five layers – T304 stainless steel (top-quality, with more chromium than lesser grades), aluminum, aluminum alloy, more aluminum, and more 18/10 stainless steel. A quarter-inch aluminum disk is impact-bonded to the base under hundreds of thousands of pounds of pressure, and covered in more stainless steel. Little holes in the stainless steel covering the base, which Dacor calls "Hot Dots," partially expose the aluminum disk to direct contact with the flame or burner. Heat is conducted through the dots to the pan more quickly (15% faster than the best other pans on the market, according to Dacor), and more evenly. The lids are made of stainless steel.

Our criticisms are modest. They are heavy. Good pans are supposed to be heavy, but these may be a little heavier. The handles (which do stay cool) are a little narrow, and some of our cooks have had a hard time turning a full pan to pour out its contents, because it wants to stay level and they have not been able to grasp the handle firmly enough. They have had to use a towel or a rubber jar opener to get the leverage needed to tilt the pan. Wider handles would help.

Like any pans in this category, they cost a fortune, but you will never spend a cent to replace them, either. Really, these pans are as good as they come.


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