Average Customer Review:
Rivals that of much more expensive sets. In several professional tests, Tramontina skillets and cookware sets offer performance rivaling that found in the much pricier All-Clad cookware. That leads one professional test kitchen to give it both Recommended and Best Buy status, with a perfect 3-star rating for cooking performance. At TheSweethome.com, that superior cooking performance, along with the bargain price compared to its closest rival, the All-Clad Stainless Steel 10-Piece Cookware Set (Est. $700), leads them to give the company's 12-piece set their top recommendation. Like All-Clad, Tramontina cookware has tri-ply construction, with a core of aluminum sandwiched between two layers of stainless steel. The pots and pans are also fully clad, meaning that the aluminum core extends all the way up the sides of each piece. This construction helps with heat retention and even distribution. Shoppers at Walmart.com wax lyrical about its performance. A few users are frustrated that food tends to stick and scorch, but more experienced owners explain that cooking with stainless steel has a learning curve.
Pay attention to experienced owners. As with all stainless steel, the only consistent complaint we saw regarding the Tramontina set was that food sticks to the pan. However, these folks were largely expecting the same type of nonstick performance as dedicated nonstick pans offer, and stainless steel will always disappoint in that area. The best approach to using stainless steel for the first time is to seek out the advice of more experienced stainless steel cooks to better understand its purpose and how to use it -- there are numerous resources on the internet. This set includes 8- and 10-inch fry pans, 2- and 3-quart saucepans with lids, and a 5-quart Dutch oven with lid. Some users complain that the pans are on the small side, although we saw a number of comments that they're perfect for single cooks or couples. For a larger family, we agree with the Sweethome.com and recommend the Tramontina 12-Piece Cookware Set (Est. $300), which includes larger 10- and 12-inch fry pans, 1.5- and 3-quart sauce pans with lids, a 5-quart sauté pan with lid, a 5-quart Dutch oven with lid, and a 12-quart stock pot with lid. The pans are dishwasher safe, although most experts recommend hand washing for all cookware. You also may have to do some scrubbing of the bottom of the pan to keep discoloration under control.
Astonishingly well made for the price. The pans in included in this Tramontina set are reasonably but not uncomfortably heavy, and their riveted handles are sturdy. The outer surface is made of 18/10 stainless steel, an alloy containing 18 percent chromium and 10 percent nickel. We did not see any durability complaints with this Tramontina set, although in the event that any problems develop, the set is backed by a lifetime warranty. However, like many manufacturers, Tramontina requires the user to cover shipping costs for cookware repairs or replacement.