Items in the alternate line are made, finished and fired in the exact same way as the regular line. Because of the hand-made nature of the products and the purity of the raw material (no extenders, additives used to control the finished product), some pieces come out with surface imperfections. MEC’s Quality Control team inspects each piece to make sure these items are functional regardless of the imperfections before they can qualify for shipping. Here are some examples; you can see here how these imperfections are not overtly visible but are noticeable only upon closer inspection.
The MEC Small Pan (1.25 qt):
The MEC Medium Pot (2.5 qt):
Cracks on the ware will closeup with use. As the pot is seasoned and used, it shrinks ever-so-slightly allowing cracks to fully closeup.
This is a close-up image and the actual spacing between the pot and lid is lesser. And yes, it will still retain steam, because it is not a tight fitting lid that locks steam inside. Rather, steam is retained inside because of some properties unique to cooking in pots made from this raw material. These features are explained here: MEC Steam management properties explained.
Go back to Alternate Line Products page.