Here’s What We Know About Those Cast Iron Skillets in Alton Brown’s Gorgeous Georgia Loft
Last Friday we ran a story about the Atlanta Magazine feature on Alton Brown’s loft in Marietta, Georgia (which he shares with his interior designer wife, Elizabeth Ingram). The local magazine got a Cribs-like tour of the whole space, but there was one area we were clearly most interested in: the kitchen. Even more specifically, the way the couple decided to put all of their pots and pans on display.
Instead of a traditional backsplash in the kitchen, the loft has a steel black wall and special hooks, which hold all the skillets and saucepans — almost as a focal point, if you will. We were impressed … and so were you guys, with many of you writing in to ask us about his cast iron collection. Here’s what we can tell you.
Those are vintage Griswold pieces. And Alton Brown LOVES Griswold cast iron. (Back in January 2017, he even wrote on Facebook, “Love me some Griswold.”) This past August, he talked to Parade about them, saying “I have 10 hanging on my wall right now,” and “They don’t make them anymore — you have to buy used ones.”
Alton, of course, is correct. (Duh.) Griswold was an American manufacturer from 1865 through 1957, making cast iron kitchen products in Erie, Pennsylvania. The company saw financial difficulties and was eventually sold (a few times) before it dissolved. Today, though, Griswold cookware is highly collectible. Fans like Griswold because the pieces have a smoother finish and are lighter in weight than most cast iron pieces made today (read: food releases super easily from the pan and you won’t sprain your wrist trying to pick up a skillet that’s full of food). And yes, many collectors DO actually use the pieces — they’re not just for display.
Buy: Griswold #6 Cast Iron Skillet, $81 at Etsy
The good news is that even though the company has been shuttered for decades, you can still find Griswold pieces out in the world — because cast iron holds up well over time! (See: How To Restore a Rusty Cast Iron Skillet.) You can find vintage Griswold pieces on eBay and Etsy at fairly reasonable prices. For example, we found a 9-Inch Griswold Skillet on auction for just $30 on eBay. Granted, the auction was still going on, but that’s a decent starting point! You may even be able to find vintage Griswold at thrift stores or antique shops, if you’re in the right place at the right time.
Do you have any Griswold cast iron? What’d you think of Alton’s kitchen?