So for those not familiar, Zwilling holds its factory sale in Pleasantville around Thanksgiving each year. Prior to last year they were in a smaller facility. Now they are in a rather large warehouse. The sale started at 10am on Friday. I arrived around noon and the large parkings lots were almost full. On my short walk to the main building I passed people walking out with boxes full of cookware. Naturally I wanted to know what people ahead of me were getting, partially out of curiosity and partially so I could see what I might have missed. Somewhat to my surprise, not a single person seemed to be leaving with items I may have wanted. Then again, I had come for one thing: Demeyere cookware of the super premium variety. Specifically I “needed” a 4.2 quart Atlantis casserole style sauce pot. The 22cm diameter pot is nearly impossible to find on sale, and the only straight-sided sauce pot missing form my batterie. Still, if I hadn’t already called ahead to make sure there would be Demeyere products available, I would have been concerned by what I saw coming out the door, which was mostly small boxes of glassware, Zwilling knife sets, and boxes with Staub printed on the outside.
I stepped inside to see a somewhat busy, but not overcrowded warehouse room. The checkout lines were already very long though, reaching all the way back into a second warehouse room with signs indicating that more goods were to found there. After eying the scene, I found a few stacks of boxes with the Demeyere label on them: new items with Industry 5 labels, and a few open box pieces on top. I had sort of expect d and scramble for these items, so a grabbed a box and threw a Pawson saucier in it. But I looked up and realized there was a no mad scramble for the Demeyere items. A few people were checking them out almost as a curiosity, but most people were mesmerized by the various enameled cast iron pieces and smaller boxed items. I looked over to the far side of the room and spotted some shelving units teaming with beautiful Silvinox treated pans. I walked over and discovered pretty much every variety of Demeyere: Atlantis, Pawson, Industry, Sensation, and a fair amount of the old Sirocco line, (which is high quality stuff and not easy to find). Most of the higher end goods were out of box. A few looked like seconds, but most just had some shelf wear. The prices were good – similar to the most recent blowout on the website on the same items, and 50-60% off other items. Again, though, no mad scramble, just the occasional old lady wandering by to admire. A few people seeing me immersed in the various pans asked me about the products, but then moved on. Most had clearly never seen or heard of Demeyere.
I spied a lone oval Apollo cooking pot that is nearly impossible to find in the U.S. or Europe and I snatched it up right away. Frankly, I never imagined finding a piece like this. It retailed for about $300, and this one was marked at $140. I also found a single 4.2 quart sauce pot by Atlantis in mint condition. Jackpot. I found the same sized pot in the Sirocco line as well and paused to consider which one I liked better. Just then, a German fellow approached me and asked how I was doing. We chatted for a bit and I asked his opinion about the pans. He seemed very knowledgeable about the product lines and gave his opinion . He later introduced himself as J.A. Henckels CEO Erich Schiffers.
I was fairly short on time, and the lines were huge, so I decided to take my small haul to the checkout. In order to do this I had to go to the back of the line in the other warehouse room. Once inside the second room, which was really an area inside the main huge warehouse, I could see the cheaper items: Fontignac Dutch ovens for $20, Zwilling Motion frypans for $10-$20, and other cheap cookware. Granted most people were gift shopping, but I was further astounded to see what people were actually buying in the checkout lines. Several people asked me what exactly it was that I had in my basket.