I have three All Clad pieces, more than 10 years old. Two are “on loan” for the last 5 years; my parents love them. They will buy all sorts of cheap cookware and keep replacing it, but the All Clads keep going. (Why they don’t just buy All Clad themselves, I’ll never know.)
I loaned my parents those two pieces when I purchased a Tramontina set at WalMart after reading recommendations online. (Those two pieces were made redundant by the new Tramontina set.) I can’t remember the details, I think the set was $120. I vaguely remember the set being made in Brazil, but can’t say for sure.
We moved at the end of summer last year, and I used that as an excuse to get rid of the Tramontinas once and for all. After using them for years, I didn’t like the heating (all aspects, evenness, retention, etc.) of the Tramontina. Plus, they didn’t take abuse well, dings and scrapes affected performance. Also, they always felt odd (something like unbalanced). I wasn’t aware there are more premium tri ply Tramontina products, though. I will now slowly build up my collection with higher quality items. One plus was that with the Tramontina set I figured out which sizes and styles of pots and pans I need.
For me, the All Clads have a great, solid feel. When I grab an All Clad, it’s a reassuring feeling, kind of like when you grab your favorite knife. And the single All Clad I have left – a small frying pan – has taken a lot of abuse. There are so many huge black spots on the bottom that I can’t scrub off with BarKeepers Friend, but it still heats perfectly. Tasks like caramelizing onions were a pain for me with Tramontina, but not so the All Clads I had before. Maybe those with better stoves won’t be as affected as I was.