Calphalon cookware, collected by cooks and used by professional chefs for years, has recently come under scrutiny. Aside from its expense, the cookware does have some problems, so potential buyers need to do some research before investing in this cookware.
The original cookware was quite heavy. Newer versions are a bit lighter, but still require some muscle. Care should be taken not to drop it on passing dogs or errant feet.
Anodized aluminum heats evenly and holds heat well; however, using high heat can cause the finish to break down and burn food faster than other cookware.
Many varieties of Calphalon cookware have handles that lack insulation—they get hot as the pan heats, and can get very hot if the pan is on even medium heat for an extended period of time.
Calphalon aluminum cookware have anodized surfaces. If this layer wears off, aluminum could react with acidic foods, affecting their taste. Aluminum is toxic, but the FDA has not found that it is safe in this cookware.
Non-stick Calphalon cookware uses a proprietary polymer that is not Teflon (under suspicion as a human toxin when burned or flaked off a pan), but it may contain polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE).
Deaths have been documented in birds exposed to PTFE, which begins to evaporate at temperatures over 320 degrees F.
References and ResourcesDietary Managers Association
Teflon on Cookware
PTFE and Birds