I have a couple Starfrit “The Rock” skillets. Mine are 8 & 10 in., and have metal handles. I bought them at BB&B. I was curious about the pebbly surface and bought the smaller skillet. I’m cooking for one, so it was the perfect size for a salmon filet. The salmon had a wonderful crispness, and I finished it with a quick herbed butter/lemon zest baste. I’ve pretty much retired my non-stick A/C range-top grill pans, as I’m finding I prefer the seared finish with a bit of pan sauce rather than try to duplicate a “grilled” burger or steak - which was never really achieved since I couldn’t reach the heat needed anyway.
I find they are the perfect “crossover” pans: they provide a non-stick surface vs. my clad pans, which do not. They provide a fast even heat that results in a great sear for meat/poultry/fish vs. traditional non-stick, which I never heated high enough to sear. I can create a great pan sauce, which I was reluctant to do in my carbon steel. (I can get that sear/sauce with my clad, but those pans are big. I needed to find some smaller pans since now cooking for one. Which is why I ended up looking for additional skillets, discovered the Starfrit, and decided to go for it. The price and 20% discount was also a factor.)
Also, the big plus for me: they are lightweight. I’ve been using them on a weekly basis for the past seven months, and so far so good. No degradation in finish. I could use metal turners and tongs, but since I already have a lot of OXO tongs and turners made for non-stick I use them. Nothing sticks enough to require scraping anyway. The cooking surface of my range is gas, and - along with all my other cookware - have never needed to turn the flame up past 6 or 7 mark. It takes less time for the Starfrit to heat up, so I’m ready to go sooner. That was probably the only learning curve I had to deal with. My clad cookware takes a bit longer to reach the “mercury ball” stage.
I use them in regular rotation with all my other cookware. I’m pleased, so far.