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Archive | December, 2010

Brands, now and then

An article in the latest Consumer Reports brings to light the sad state of another vintage brand, Pyrex, which is also owned by World Kitchen, which owns the Revere Ware brand.  While the cheapening of Revere Ware began long before World Kitchen owned the brand (the good stuff was made before 1968 and World Kitchen purchased the Revere assets in 1998) this article goes to show that World Kitchen definitely isn’t about honoring the spirit of the brands it owns.

In the case of Revere Ware, today’s cookware is made with a much thinner layer of stainless steel and copper than the vintage cookware was.  The thinner copper layer is not nearly as good at spreading the heat as the thicker layer in the older cookware, resulting in more hot spots and burned food.  Here is an example of the difference:

(Image courtesy of Classic Kitchens and More and The Shine Shop)

In the case of Pyrex, today’s glassware is made of tempered soda lime, while the vintage glassware (and current European glassware) is made of borosilicate.  Borosilicate glassware handles temperature changes much better than soda lime glass does.

Exactly when the changeover occurred is still up for debate, but there is some evidence that it happened about when World Kitchen took over the Pyrex business.