Go with Mafter Bourgeat and get one of their black steel pans (the 11 7/8" one) and get the remainder from their stainless steel collection: the 9-1/2" and 11" fry pans, the 1-3/4 quart and 4 quart sauce pans, the 7-1/2 quart stock pot, and optionally the 4 quart saute pan. Altogether, these should run you about $500-$600.
There's a small detail with these Mafter pots and pans that's not in most cookware. The handles are attached in a way where the rivets don't go through so the interior is clean.
- This copper/induction ready Hestan set I guess if you want to splurge
- Grab these Mac knives – 9" chef (or alternate), slicer, utility, paring
- Grab this spatula, microplane, Hi-soft cutting board
- 12" cast iron skillet (for fried chicken) and 10.5" cast iron griddle (for pancakes) are also nice and have been put to good use