Sophisticated and reliable, the Taylor Connoisseur Digital Folding Probe Thermometer 518 boasts the ability to take moderately quick temperature readings in the oven, a frying pan or even on the grill. This meat thermometer is a good bet for those who want the versatility of a quality digital instant-read thermometer but don't cook temperature-sensitive dishes often enough to invest in a more expensive model.
Measures temperatures quickly on a backlit display. While not as lightning fast as pricier instant-read models on the market, the Taylor Connoisseur 518 still measures the internal temperature of meats and other foods in just a few seconds. This digital cooking thermometer also features a backlit display, making a quick read in a dark oven easier. Most importantly, reviewers find it both accurate and consistent. As with other folding probe models, users like that the unit automatically shuts off when the probe is folded down, saving battery life and time. Many users also say they appreciate the ability to set target temperatures with the Taylor Connoisseur 518, which helps them gauge cooking time.
Easy to clean. Compared to a stick thermometer, the Taylor Connoisseur 518's folding probe and plastic body (with digital display) are quite bulky. Most users say they don't mind the size and complex temperature reading set up, given the low price. However, others contend they'd prefer a more basic interface that is easier to use.
One expert reviewer, from ShelfLifeAdvice.com, mentions the Taylor Connoisseur folding probe model specifically because it has no sheath and is therefore easier to keep clean. "(It is) one answer to the cleaning problem while still making storage and use convenient," she writes. Additionally, the few users who mentioned operational problems with the thermometer report good customer service from Taylor when calling during the one-year warranty period.
1. Good Housekeeping
After testing 20 thermometers in icy and boiling water, and later with a cut of meat, editors at Good Housekeeping ranked the Taylor Connoisseur fifth overall and second among instant-read thermometers. Reviewers like the preset capability but say programming isn't intuitive.
Review: Best Food Thermometers, Editors of Good Housekeeping, Not Dated
In this introductory article to meat thermometers, reviewer Ethel Tiersky mentions the Taylor Connoisseur 518 as a favorite because it's easy to clean.
Review: Food/Meat Thermometers -- What You Need to Know, Ethel Tiersky, Dec. 1, 2011
In about 20 reviews, Amazon.com shoppers praise the thermometer's temperature settings and backlit display. The few complaints are from users who prefer a simpler interface or who had to call during the model's one-year warranty period due to malfunction.
Review: Taylor Connoisseur Digital Folding Probe Thermometer, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of August 2013