The Soto Amicus Stove and Cook Set Combo is a lightweight and durable cooking system for backpacking adventures. Reasonably priced, the cook set comes with the Soto Amicus stove and a two-piece aluminum pot set with a 500 ml pot and a larger 1,000 ml pot. The smaller pot serves as a lid to the larger when cooking, but could also be a cup or a second cooking pot if needed. The entire set fits together nicely inside a mesh-carrying bag and the pots can easily contain the stove, a foldable spork, and an 8 oz fuel canister.
Specs at a Glance
- Fuel type: Canister
- Stove Piezo Igniter: Yes
- Stove BTU: 10,210
- Regulator: No
- Boil time: 2 cups, 1:41
- Pots included: 2
- Pot Material: hard-anodized aluminum
- Stove Weight: 79.4g (2.8 oz)
- Small Pot: Volume – 500ml (16.9oz), Weight – 78g (3 oz)
- Large Pot: Volume – 1,000ml (33.8oz), Weight – 120g (4.3 oz)
The Amicus Canister Stove
Soto makes great canister stoves and the Amicus ranks right up there. It’s a powerful stove that generates 10,210 BTUs, making it one of the hottest burning canister stoves available to backpackers today. The Amicus stove provided in this cookset has a piezo igniter for convenience, although you can also purchase a model without one. It has four pot supports that fold away compactly for storage and can be used with a wide array of small and medium-sized pots.
The stove has a slightly recessed burner and a raised burner crown, which serves to protect the flame from wind (Soto was the first to engineer this capability.) This stove burns efficiently and it has not blown out on me when the conditions have been windy, though windy conditions can increase cooking times thus requiring more fuel.
I have used this stove in the high alpine, desert, and boreal forest environments; and the Soto Amicus stove has performed well in each of these situations. The stove is easy to light, and typically takes just one push of the Piezo igniter’s red button to start once the gas is on. Soto’s piezo igniters are head and shoulders above those included on MSR or Jetboil Stoves, in terms of reliability, but they are still susceptible to environmental wear and tear.
For example, in sandy desert conditions, I take care to keep the stove free from dust and sand. But it is always possible to light the stove with a bic lighter, hand-held sparker or a match. Soto provides reasonably priced igniter replacement kits and has a YouTube video demonstrating how to replace a faulty Piezo igniter if you do manage to wear one out.
The Amicus Cook Set
The two-pot cook set is the perfect size for a solo backpacker and the main, large pot, has a 1,000ml capacity, which means that you can technically boil four cups of water. In practice, I typically avoid filling the pot all the way up to the top to allow for better balance on the stove and a quicker boiling time. The stove brings two cups of water to a rapid, rolling boil in less than two minutes while boiling four cups can take nearly five minutes when the stove is turned up full blast; all times dependent on the conditions and the altitude, in this case, it was 1,000 feet. With a 3-minute boil, I am easily able to make enough hot water to hydrate a two-cup backpacker meal and make a hot drink to enjoy while I wait for dinner.
It is possible to use this cooking system between two people without significantly increasing the number of times you need to boil water. When backpacking with my wife, we generally boil water for a morning cup of coffee and then boil another pot for oatmeal or a packaged meal. On average, we boil water 2-3 times in the morning and the same at night and use about 8oz of fuel on a 4-day trip.
The small pot serves primarily as a lid when boiling water, but is useful for cooking and as a cup. I typically bring an insulated GSI Outdoors Infinity Backpacker Mug for eating and drinking, and just use the pots for boiling water to avoid having to scrub them out after a meal. The anodized coating on the aluminum pots are NOT non-stick, and care must be taken during cooking to avoid burning food to the bottom of the pot.
The pot handles are made of aluminum with a heat-resistant rubber coating that makes it possible to remove a hot pot from the stove and serve up boiling water or cooked food immediately. Always be sure to extend the handles before cooking or they will become too hot to touch once the water has reached a boil.
It is possible to cook meals (as opposed to boiling water to add to packaged backpacker meals) with this cooking system, and the Soto Amicus stove flame turns down quite low to approximate a simmer. That said it requires near constant stirring. If done well and with constant tending, a meal of spaghetti-O’s and meatballs is achievable with a minimum of food residue to clean up… but the devil is in the meatballs!
The Soto Amicus Cook Set Combo has proven to be a dependable and efficient addition to my backpacking kit. It always works; it is light and compact enough, and the price feels like a real deal. As one who used his previous stove and cook set for ten years, I’d say things are looking good for another decade of backpacking adventures with this setup.
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