19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I have been drooling over the Lodge Signature series since they were first introduced. I have a cupboard full of Lodge (very well used) and couldn't justify the price - until my son direly needed a grill pan. Sooo - I gave him my Lodge Logic grill pan (a fine pan in it's own right) and treated myself to this beauty.
I am astounded at the beauty, heft and quality of this pan. The pictures don't do it justice. Superbly crafted - in the USA (HOORAY!!!!!), pre-seasoned, with gorgeous, well balanced stainless handles and the date 1896 stamped into the helper handle. The Lodge insignia in stainless is just below the main handle.
Couldn't wait to try it - so off to the store for a treat - fresh cut 1 1/2" thick prime filets. Rinsed this black beauty in hot water, dried it and right on the stove. Fired it up HOT, sprayed it with canola oil and put those bad boy filets, rolled in crushed pepper, in the pan. Meanwhile, I had a batch of Alton Brown's Bakers going in the oven, a Caesar salad chilling, a demi-glace made and gorgonzola at the ready and my Lodge Fajita pans heating in a 350 degree oven. 5 minutes and a flip, 3 more minutes, drizzle with demi-glace and crumbled gorgonazola and under a lid for about 45 seconds and then on to the hot fajita pans along with the bakers.
HEAVEN!!!! Those filets were better than any I've ever been served in restaurants - melt in your mouth tender, juicy, seared to perfection. Serving on the hot fajita pans kept them hot until the very last bite.
The quality of this cast iron pan is just amazing - perfect heat distribution - and the stay cool stainless handle is a real bonus. (Note: the helper handle does get hot because of it's length) Cleanup was a breeze - after dinner I poured hot water in the pan, heated it and then swirled a nylon brush around and through the grooves. Clean as a whistle. Rinsed it, dried it, put it back on the stove for a minute to get rid of any moisture and then wiped it down with a very thin coat of food grade beeswax and mineral oil made for chopping blocks (from Wooden Wonders on eBay). This product helps keep your cast iron seasoned without the rancid smell of oil.
After this experience, I will be buying the other Lodge Signature pans. There are pans - and then there are PANS. This falls into the latter category. What a pleasure to use such a beautiful piece that is also exceptionally well crafted, balanced and designed. I haven't had the heart to put it away in a cupboard - it's too gorgeous to hide and I'll be using it often.
Hats off to Lodge for an excellent product and applause to Amazon for selling it with the free shipping. This pan will last more than a lifetime. Worth it's weight in gold - and now that I've used it, worth every single penny in price. I hope Lodge will add more pans to the Signature line!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
Lodge is one of the few cookware products still made in the U.S. Their cookware is widely recommended by experts. A standard skillet like this will run in the mid to high $30's, and I've seen plenty of seconds for $15+ at Marshall's, etc. But those handles will get hot and need a holder. This product goes one big one better, since it has the great looking (and design award winning) stainless steel stay-cool handle (note that the long handle will stay cool about 1 1/2"+ away from the skillet, but the short loop will still need a holder). Pre-seasoning helps a lot. I am dissappointed, though, that Amazon is selling this for $107 delivered when there are several other online sources selling it for $10+ or so less, delivered (Chef's Catalog, a vendor here, sells it for $99 with free delivery).
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
As a chef who lives in a condo and is not only stuck without natural gas service to the kitchen and a fire marshal's city-wide ban on barbecue grills on the terraces, I ended up with a ceramic-topped cooker that really doesn't get along well with cast iron cookware.
For many years I had to dream of the day when I could just use my two-sided cast iron grill-n-griddle in my own kitchen.
I spent a long time hunting around for an indoor electric "barbecue" grill, and after reading all the dissatisfied reviews, I moved on to try locating a one-sided cast iron grill that would treat my cook-top well and deal with the difficult heat transfer from an electric stove element without making my life miserable.
I don't know why I hadn't found Lodge Signature cookware before this, but those days are now over.
Anyone who has used cast iron (correctly) doesn't need a review of what it can do for food. There are many people who have tried it, and developed a hatred for it; it can be fussy. If you are new to cast iron, many of the other reviews have very good suggestions and care tips, as do the instructions that come with the pan. But, treated well and used properly, there is no comparison.
Enter this grill pan, and the gap between pressed aluminium and cast iron just gets wider.
Now, this is cast iron, so the list is identical to any other pan of its kind, EXCEPT: The bottom of this grill pan is FLAT.
It's COMPLETELY *flat*. And, SMOOTH.
Not to sound "dirty", but it's as flat and smooth as a Le Creuset's bottom.
Unlike most other cast iron pans that not only have a bottom-side ridge around the perimeter of the pan, but also have raised or depressed manufacturer logos making the bottom surface very irregular, this one has nothing but smoothness.
What does that mean, and why am I doting over it? Well, that means:
1. I can use it on my ceramic-top cooker (as long as I don't slide it or drop it), and
2. It will heat evenly on any electric cook-top without the need for heat spreaders.
It does have those shiny stainless handles that stay cooler than the all-cast-iron pans to be had for a lot less money, but so do my pressed aluminium Calphalon and All-Clad pans. So, that doesn't budge me one way or the other.
The big deal for me is that beautifully smooth bottom it's got.
Well, it's cast iron, so it's friggin' heavy, and it requires the same tiny bit of extra care that all cast iron cookware requires.
But, given that extra care and attention (found in the use and care manual that usually comes with all cast iron cookware), and this particular grill pan will produce wonderfully "near-as-outdoor-barbecue" food as you can possibly get in a condo, on a ceramic-top cooker--and that's pretty darned close.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
This Lodge grill pan is great. It comes pre-seasoned and is very heavy. You will find yourself using both handles to pick it up. It makes good steaks. DO NOT use soap or abrasives when washing this pan - it will ruin the seasoning. I got a Lodge Set of 2 Durable Polycarbonate Pan Scrapers,Red and Black and just wash it in hot water. I also bought the Lodge 12 Inch Tempered Glass Lid and it fits just fine.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
Right off the bat, you should be informed that as of January 1, 2013, Lodge will suspend production of the Signature Series until further notice. This is NOT a discontinuation. The Signature line is suspended until redesigning and production resumes. In the meantime, pick up some great deals here on Amazon and ebay.
The Handle is the Big News Here
A few years ago, Lodge, America's largest maker of cast iron cookware, came out with the Signature Series cast iron grill pan and standard frying pans with a stay-cool stainless steel handle! Using a stainless steel handle was the perfect metal to choose for that. Here are the benefits:
1. Stainless steel is a poor conductor of heat due to the alloy of chromium and nickel added to the carbon steel to make it stainless. The traditional one-piece cast iron fry pan had, of course, an integral cast iron handle that becomes so hot that an insulated pad or handle cover is absolutely required to prevent serious burns. Not so with a stay-cool stainless steel handle.
2. A stainless steel handle does not rust, ever.
3. The ergonomic, curved handle is comfortable to hold when cooking or frying. It gives you just the right leverage too.
4. The handle has a professional, attractive appearance. Surely, it does not have that down-home look, yet it does have a more 21st Century, upscale appeal. Plus you get a stainless steel stay-cool Helper Handle opposite the long main handle to make lifting easier.
The Body of the Pan
The pan body has changed shape, it is much more vertical than the traditional flared walls of the bare cast iron of the pan body itself. The benefits of traditional bare cast iron are many.
1. The main benefit is its ability to spread heat evenly across the bottom for even temperature, and for superior cooking performance...no hot spots so that all the food in the pan has access to the almost the same temperature, center to edge, so that all the food pieces will cook evenly and at the same time, and finish cooking at the same time.
2. A seasoned cast iron pan is NONSTICK so you can cook eggs and pancakes in it. These pans come pre-seasoned! An enameled cast iron pan also ensures even heat, but is NOT non-stick, though it is wonderful as for certain low heat, slow cooking techniques such as braising and stewing with acidic ingredients such as wine, tomatoes, citrus, etc. Bare cast iron such a Lodge is not appropriate for that(bare cast iron and acidic food are not compatible because it causes off-tastes or undesirable color changes, such as graying). On the other hand, food will stick to enameled cast iron at higher heat, so bare cast iron, such as this Lodge grill pan and fry pans are best for that.
3. The shape of these Lodge Signature pans is superior to the traditional cast iron fry pan shape. The side walls of the Lodge Signature grill and fry pans are almost vertical, almost like a traditional saute pan, instead of flaring noticeably outward as they do with the traditional cast iron fry pan shape. For the same given diameter you enjoy a larger surface area to cook on than otherwise.
4. Two surface options are available. The Grill Pan bottom has raised ridges on the bottom to raise the food above the bottom of the pan for gentler cooking and to ensure that fat collects UNDER the food instead of sitting in the fat while cooking and retaining the fats, meats and fowl in particular, and for Pannini sandwiches, for healthier eating.
The Flat Bottomed fry pan versions are best for many other cooking techniques and food where you want full contact with the bottom such as when cooking eggs, bacon, or for searing steaks, chops, or veal, or when the recipe calls for full contact on a flat surface.
5. Sizes. The Signature Series grill pan version is 12 inches in diameter. The standard flat bottom Signature Series frying pans come in 10 inch and 12 inch diameters.
I have used my Lodge Signature Grill and Fry pans for several years with great success. You will find that it is almost impossible to destroy them. Will the pans to the kids, and your kids can will them to the grandkids, and they to theirs, and so on, well, almost.
Congratulations Lodge, you have designed a winner here. Highly recommended.
I hope this was helpful to you. If you have questions, please reply in the Comment section below...I would be glad to help.
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