While watching TV during a morning workout, I happened to see a commercial for Chef Tony's, Smart Lidz. The lids (Lidz) are round disks that consist of a (space age!) polymer encircled by a plastic rim. The commercial went on to demonstrate how to vacuum seal different sized bowls by placing the Lidz over the bowl, and pressing down in the center of the polymer. This forces the air out to preserve the freshness of the food. To remove the Lidz, all you have to do is pull up on the "handle" of the plastic rim. The Smart Lidz can also be used in the microwave, freezer, and are dishwasher safe! All this for the low cost of 9.99! BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE! If you went to the web site or called the toll free number, you could get a second set absolutely free!! I was sold!! I have a million containers that have long since lost their covers, and I'm always in need of something to cover my food in the microwave. So I took down the web site address with the intent to place an order later.
I finally got around to visiting the official web site, but I ended up not ordering from them. I DID place an order for Smart Lidz with someone else. More about that later...
When I received the Smart Lidz I put them to the test. They claim the Lidz will vacuum seal on any size, or shape bowl, and on any type of material. So I hauled out 3 bowls... plastic, glass, and metal. I filled all three with a small amount of water, and proceeded to press the air out as directed. After that, I picked up each bowl and turned them upside down. No leaks! Next, I tested the Lidz in the microwave. During microwaving, the Lidz need to be placed loosely on top of the bowl. I was curious to see if the water I was heating, would cause the Lidz to suck down into the bowl and inadvertently seal it. As it turns out, the Lidz passed the microwave test with flying colors!
I haven't used the Lidz for freezing yet, so I can't tell you how well that would works. Another thing I haven't experienced (yet) is the polymer becoming stained by tomato sauces etc.
One thing to mention is, when the Lidz are released from a bowl, the polymer seems "poochy", in the center. The directions say to run the Lidz under hot water and this will tighten the polymer back to normal. Sure enough, it did!
As you can see, this simple product does exactly what it says! Now, I wish I had more of them! Which leads me to why I didn't order from the official web site... I started filling out the order form on the site, but decided to see if other sites offered the Smart Lidz for less money. Okay, call me cheap, but I did a search anyway. While conducting my search, I found several sites telling horrifying stories of being ripped off by Chef Tony! Seems that people were being charged outrageous shipping charges, so the 10.00 for two sets of Lidz wasn't the deal it appeared to be. Evidently, the shipping charges were not disclosed until the customers viewed their final receipt. By then they had submitted the payment, and it was too late. BUT, recently I visited the Smart Lidz web site, and they now post a reasonable shipping charge right out in front! My guess is, they got into a little hot water! But if you're curious about what customers had to say about them before they had a change of heart, go here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/0/312/RipOff0312969.htm
Enough ranting about that! The product itself is great! I'll probably end up buying another set, however, I'm still a bit leery about the "official" web site!
Update On Jun 08, 2008: June 8, 2008: Ok... here's the deal... I have to take back the glowing report I did on the Smart Lidz. In the beginning I thought they were great! (See video) Now that I've had a chance to really use them, I find that they don't keep their suction on the container. In other words I can get the Lidz to seal, but after a period of time (sometimes just hours), the Lidz lose the suction on the bowl and end up sitting on the top like a Frisbee. I'm not as enchanted as I was with this product.