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Poll: Are high end knives = high end cookware?

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ptolemy

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Just wondering in general. People who chose to own/use high end knives (say $250+), do they feel the same way about cookware? Or, there is no correlation? Ie. which group do you fall into?

1. high end knives, high end cookware ($250+ knife and $250+ per pot/appliance)
2. high end knives, middle/low end cookware (below $150)
3. middle/low end knives/high end cookware ($100 and lower for knives, $200+ for cookware)
4. low end knives and cookware (sub $100)
5. something else? explain below...

I am more into 5. I have owned many high end knives but for me, reality is simple... they are too much maintenance and if you're not good at sharpening, you're really losing money on the fly. Now, All my knives are sub $100, short or 1-2 grails that I don't use but show off, when needed. With cookware though, not only do I have a $250 rice cooker and $130 water boiler (both zojirushi), but few of my pots are $400+ range. I simply value them more than knives because they don't degrade as fast as knives, i can quantify size/performance for the job, and I don't have to worry about maintenance... just follow basic soap and soft sponge cleaning. :)

my priciest piece of cookware is a $750 mauviel pot.
 

BillHanna

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That’s funny to me. I think I could self justify a 300USD knife to myself, over buying a LC Dutch oven. Moreover, the Dutch oven is easier to pass down, regarding maintenance. I think I found my way out lol. Three or four more knives, then upgrade the cookware.
 

HappyamateurDK

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That’s funny to me. I think I could self justify a 300USD knife to myself, over buying a LC Dutch oven. Moreover, the Dutch oven is easier to pass down, regarding maintenance. I think I found my way out lol. Three or four more knives, then upgrade the cookware.
I can say for sure that I would rather stick to 100USD knives then say goodbye to my LC casseroles and Dutch oven 😊
 

AFKitchenknivesguy

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It's all subjective, although I will say that you are likely to more easily and quickly be able to get some (or more money depending on the knife) when you change or upgrade.

Also, high end knives are also subjective and I don't consider $250+ high end...maybe $500+.
 

HappyamateurDK

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It's all subjective, although I will say that you are likely to more easily and quickly be able to get some (or more money depending on the knife) when you change or upgrade.

Also, high end knives are also subjective and I don't consider $250+ high end...maybe $500+.
Ofcourse.. for some people 100 USD represent a higher value then 500 does to others. All is relative
 

LostHighway

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My knives aren't what I'd consider high end but many of them are north of $250. Most of our cookware is old (>20 years) All-Clad with a scattering of Le Creuset and Lodge pieces plus a few others. As much as I love food I'm only a decent cook and I have little or no sense that better cookware would make a difference. For the moment I'm stuck with a coil electric cooktop which is a far larger impediment. The plan is to replace that with a BlueStar. I do lust after a few pieces of cookware, mostly in larger volumes, but they would probably only see use a few times a month. Accumulating tons of cookware becomes a storage problem, knives not so much.
I'm curious to know if anyone here has used the Made In carbon pans and, if so, how they compare with De Buyer, Matfer Bourgeat or other options?
 

AT5760

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Interesting thread. When I think high-end, I think only found in specialty stores or direct from the maker. I love my LC, but I put it roughly at Shun on the high end spectrum. I feel that cookware is at a higher price point than cutlery for similar quality.
 

Wahnamhong

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So, where's the poll?? Would be fun to have an actual poll. :)

While I know more about cookware than knives, I do think that there is a similarity: more expensive products are not always 'better'. On another forum I engage with a retired American chef who used to work in 3* Michelin places in Europe. He always brags how they used Victorinox knives, Matfer carbon steel pans, and cheapo nonstick pans all the time. Copper cookware would be just for decoration.

To answer the question: I want the best products and while I do have a somewhat large budget I will often gravitate towards best bang for buck items. So in cookware I have pans ranging from cheap carbon steel to expensive copper Mauviel. In knives I'm giving myself a limit of say 450 euro for a single knife. Ultimately I'm a home cook wanting to get my hands dirty, and not a collector!
 

Colorado_cutter

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I guess I'm sort of in category #2.

knives: $230 (used) Ashi Hamono white #2 cleaver, $65 Tanaka petty, $60 bread knife, $40 Shi Ba Zi cleaver, $7 Victorinox paring, plus a couple hundred dollars or so in sharpening stones and suchlike...

cookware: modern and vintage Lodge cast iron skillets, chicken fryer, dutch oven; carbon steel wok; various stainless stock pots; Le Creuset saucepans from the 70s that I got from my Mom and don’t love anymore (the pans); cast aluminum stock pot from the early 20th century; bunch of Calphalon that the wife has. Nothing cost more than $40/piece.

If I’m frugal with knives them positively cheap with cookware. I just love the plain cast iron so much I don’t see the need to go fancier.
 

coffeelover191919

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I have a Kato SG2 240 gyuto that sells for 300 on CKTG. I also have a Masamoto SW 240 gyuto that I bought at masamoto sohonten in tokyo for $450ish. Both are in $50 Sayas.

My cookware is lodge cast iron or Mauviel carbon steel. I keep a cheap nonstick pan for. Omelets. I have a lodge wok. And a stainless pan for sautéing large dishes with tomato sauce.
 

HappyamateurDK

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I have a Kato SG2 240 gyuto that sells for 300 on CKTG. I also have a Masamoto SW 240 gyuto that I bought at masamoto sohonten in tokyo for $450ish. Both are in $50 Sayas.

My cookware is lodge cast iron or Mauviel carbon steel. I keep a cheap nonstick pan for. Omelets. I have a lodge wok. And a stainless pan for sautéing large dishes with tomato sauce.
Luckily carbon steel pans are cheap and brilliant. I have yet to meet a non-stick pan that are even close to carbon steel.
 

tgfencer

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My knives are in the mid-range. My cookware are in the "affordable" range. I can't fathom dropping money on a Le Creuset Dutch oven when the off-color Lodge ones I get for $40 from TJ Maxx performs as well.
I was just about to mention that TJ Maxx is where its at for buying decent to good cookware for a snip, at least in the U.S. My local store often has decently priced LC and Staub as well as the cheaper Lodge versions.
 

CiderBear

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I was just about to mention that TJ Maxx is where its at for buying decent to good cookware for a snip, at least in the U.S. My local store often has decently priced LC and Staub as well as the cheaper Lodge versions.
I love scouting the kitchenware section of TJ Maxx, Ross and Homegoods :) Back before I got into Japanese knives, I bought a full Wusthof knife set from TJ Maxx for ~$200 (returned them because the chef knife was heavy)
 

Tristan

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Home cook. High end knives & high end everything else that I can afford.
imagine that in a pro environment only your knives travel with you? So maybe that’s how it became the most important
 

MowgFace

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I think I’m in group 2 as well

most expensive knives are around 600.
Cookware, I have mostly All Clad MC/MC2. I have a LC Dutchy that was a gift from my girlfriend. My Carbon steel and Cast iron pans still get tons of love

I think the kicker is I continue to buy knives but consider my cookware complete.
 

dafox

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By your definition probably a "2". Most used cookware all clad, a nonstick wok, and a carbon steel wok.
 

rmrf

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My knives are in the $200-$300 range and my pots range from $50-$300 so by your metric I cfall into class 1, but I don't think my knives are high end especially compared to other people in this forum. I started with carbon (de buyer, matfer bourgeat), cast iron (lodge), and enameled cast iron (le creuset, heavier knock off le creuset) but have moved almost completely away from them. Now I almost solely use stainless clad (demeyere, all clad, knock off all clad) because I cook with a lot of acid. I bet my cheap induction stove also biases thing. On cast iron, I get a hot ring on the pan which makes searing splotchy and stupid. Aluminum or copper cores just solve that problem. In the last year, I've only used carbon or cast iron when I warm tortillas or stir fry marinated meat because stainless sticks just a little too much. I don't notice a difference with stews in stainless clad vs enameled cast iron and stainless is easier for me to clean.

I have a lot more to learn and try with knives but I think I'm almost done with cookware. I want to try a wok burner and a wok and I could try stainless lined copper, but I'd have to wait until I get a non-induction stove.

I'm not a good enough cook to use cheaper tools. There were many dishes I couldn't get right until I used a different fry pan or different knife. French julienned carrot salad and seared scallops for instance.

That said, if I had a gas range, I would try cheap thick aluminum pans that I could beat the f*** out of.
 
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DitmasPork

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Just wondering in general. People who chose to own/use high end knives (say $250+), do they feel the same way about cookware? Or, there is no correlation? Ie. which group do you fall into?

1. high end knives, high end cookware ($250+ knife and $250+ per pot/appliance)
2. high end knives, middle/low end cookware (below $150)
3. middle/low end knives/high end cookware ($100 and lower for knives, $200+ for cookware)
4. low end knives and cookware (sub $100)
5. something else? explain below...

I am more into 5. I have owned many high end knives but for me, reality is simple... they are too much maintenance and if you're not good at sharpening, you're really losing money on the fly. Now, All my knives are sub $100, short or 1-2 grails that I don't use but show off, when needed. With cookware though, not only do I have a $250 rice cooker and $130 water boiler (both zojirushi), but few of my pots are $400+ range. I simply value them more than knives because they don't degrade as fast as knives, i can quantify size/performance for the job, and I don't have to worry about maintenance... just follow basic soap and soft sponge cleaning. :)

my priciest piece of cookware is a $750 mauviel pot.
#2

IMO, a personal choice, depends on the objective of cook/collector.

For me there's no conscious correlation—much comes down to my bank account. That said, I'll happily spend $200–$900 on knives, but tend to be more frugal with regards to cookware. It's easier for me to appreciate the quality often inherent in a $600 gyuto, then with high priced pots and pans. I'm much more utilitarian with cookware than with knives—makes no difference in the kitchen whether using a cheap, made in China, cast iron skillet vs a $275 hand-forged Smithey skillet. I do love the idea of splurging on a Yamada wok or Staub cocotte, but they won't make my food any better—would rather direct funds to knives. Those are some of my objectives.

Admittedly, I think about buying a Zojirushi induction rice cooker every time I'm at MTC. But can't justify it—since I've never owned a rice cooker and have always cooked perfect rice in a pot for decades.

Perhaps if I had a bulging bank account, with surplus funds and not saving up for another knife, I'd consider spending more than what I have on cookware.

With knives, I'm often chasing another upgrade—with cookware I'm happy with what I have for as long as they work.

Some of my most used cookware the kitchen:
• Chinese claypot, think it was $12, bought decades ago
• Carbon wok, about $20, bought decades ago
• Stainless Paderno pots and pans, forgot price bought decades ago
• 2 T-Fal non-stick skillets, cheap
• Carbon De Buyer pan, maybe 15 years old, forgot price
• 2 Griswold cast iron, passed down from grandmother

However, I do splurge on cutting boards—which does kinda correlate to the price point on my knives.
 

agp

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Don't really care about decorative cookware like I care about decorative knives. No way am I going to maintain a copper pan the say way I maintain a carbon knife. The only expensive cookware I have is Le Creuset dutch ovens and Lodge cast iron pans. I have some stainless steel pots and pans and give zero f's if they get abused, and that is kind of liberating.
 

ExistentialHero

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I have some nice-ish cookware (some All-Clad pieces, a few De Buyer carbon-steel pans), but nothing super high-end or exotic. I'm not especially interested in the nineteen-ply unobtanium-clad skillets from Demeyere and such, but I'm very interested in smith-made skillets for some of the same reasons I'm interested in smith-made knives. Haven't sprung for one yet, and I keep blowing my budget on knives, but I may yet grab something from Heart and Spade or a similar operation.
 

Twigg

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I have a few nice skillets.

1) 12” Lodge cast iron – bought it roughly 10 years ago. Had to sand out the inside to get it nice and smooth, then started seasoning. I left the factory seasoning on the outside and it has held up well over the years. I love this for bacon and searing.

2) 9” Lodge Carbon Steel Skillet- I modified the inside like the cast iron above. I love this little skillet. It heats up fast and nothing sticks to it. It has been seasoned over the course of about 6 years. My favorite skillet for eggs.

3) 12” Debuyer Mineral B – Wanted one for years, finally bought it and rarely use it.

4) 12” All-clad D7 - Got this from @ptolemy early this summer. I really like it! It has been fantastic! I find that I use this a great deal for a variety of things.

5) 9” All-clad D3 French – Bought on a whim for small acids, rarely use it. Heats up fast.

6) 6Qt All-clad D5 Essential pan - Great, use it for batches of Haluski and Halupski (Sarma) or just a big batch of something.

7) Staub 5qt Dutch Oven - Bought it at TJ Maxx for $99 a few years ago. Works great!
 

panda

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I heard a rumor that a lot of high-end knife guys are terrible cooks with bad knife skills and collect knives because they need a distraction from their other hobbies of collecting guns they never shoot and watches they never wear.
basically summarize as collectors = nerds that dont do anything but stare.
 

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