Great Jones is taking on kitchen giants like Le Creuset and All-Clad. 

Great Jones
Credit: Great Jones

Award-winning food writer Sierra Tishgart has come across a lot of cookware lines in her career, but none—as she realized not too long ago—that bridge the gap between Ikea and Le Creuset. "I wanted high-quality beautiful pieces that would last and inspire me," Tishgart told us. "I just kept thinking, why does this not exist?" So she teamed up with her childhood friend Maddy Moelis—they met 20 years ago at summer camp—who began her career working for startups like Warby Parker and the wedding registry company Zola, on Great Jones, a collection of super stylish pots and pans geared towards young cooks.

Named after famed cookbook author and editor Judith Jones (she published the work of icons like Julia Child and James Beard), Great Jones is focused on the essentials. Currently, there are five pieces in the lineup: an enameled cast-iron Dutch oven ("The Dutchess"); a large, stainless steel pot ("Big Deal"); a saucier pan ("Saucy"); a ceramic (not Teflon) non-stick skillet ("Small Fry"); and a sauté pan-skillet hybrid ("Deep Cut"). You can order each piece individually (prices range from $45 to $145), or buy all five "family style" for $395. "We live in small apartments," Tishgart said, "so a big question we had from the start was what do you actually need to set you up for success in your kitchen."

To help answer that, the entrepreneurs called upon food world friends like David Chang, Jessica Koslow, and Nicolas Jammet of Sweetgreen (all three are currently investors). Jammet was one of the first to test the products, while Koslow was consulted on everything from handle shapes to whether the saucepan should hold three quarts or four quarts.

And while Tishgart and Moelis don't play favorites, The Dutchess does lend itself to the season. "It's so wonderful to do a long stew," Tishgart said. "It's beautiful, it's colorful, we even put flower arrangements in them when they're not in use."