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All-Clad Stockpot Questions - SS v. MC2?

empowah | Jan 26, 2008 04:57 PM

Hi all, I currently have an All-Clad Stainless Steel 4-qt saute pan that I really like. It seems to conduct heat very well - good for searing - and at the same time, it "deglazes" well and is easy to clean.

I'm looking for something similar but with a greater liquid capacity, so that I can sear meat, saute mirepoix, add lots of liquid, move it into the oven, and then slowly braise short ribs, ox tails, lamb shanks, etc. Or I could make a good amount of ragu, using just one pot.

I've read a few posts that suggest not to spend money on a nice stockpot, especially for making stock, as it's a waste, and that lots of cheaper alternatives can do the same thing. I'm concerned that with a thinner "core" or "base", I won't be able to get a proper Maillard reaction (or "wok hei" in Cantonese), and that transferring from my saute pan ingredients into the stockpot might be messy or inconvenient.

In any case, I am wondering if there are any quality differences between All-Clad's Stainless Steel line and their Master Chef 2 line. The MC2 8-quart stockpot is $35 more than the Stainless Steel equivalent. Interestingly, the 8-quart versions of the Stainless Steel stockpot is silver (I assume a sort of "brushed" finish), like the MC2, and unlike most other Stainless Steel models. Hopefully it's up to the same standard as their normal chrome ones.

I'm looking for something similar to my beloved saute pan. Also, are there any alternatives, preferably available at BB&B (I have store credit there) you Chowhoundians suggest? :) Thanks in advance!

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