After testing out numerous kitchen knives for sharpness, precision, comfort, and durability, Consumer Reports declared to day that forged knives, that is, knife blades made of forged steel, beat out all the rest. Looking at the list of Top 9 Kitchen Knives, the prices fairly reflect the quality, ranging between $270 to a whopping $600!
Why forged? Forging the steel produces a blade that is is stronger than an equivalent cast or machined part. As the metal is shaped during the forging process--hammering and heating and reheating and hammering some more--its internal grain deforms to follow the blade shape. As a result, the grain is continuous throughout the blade, giving rise to a knife that is stronger and stays sharper longer.
But Didriks has always known the superior quality of forged blades. It's why we carry the Berti kitchen knives. Each one is made from blade to handle by a single Italian artisan, a practice that has gone unchanged since 1895. Each kitchen knife is signed by the artisan, brining pride and incredible quality to each knife.
And at $260 to about $500, depending on size and handle material, per chef's knife, these quality knives are priced accordingly. Recently featured on Apartment Therapy's The Kitchen, their evaluation of the Berti Chef's knife reflects my own after having used it myself:
"I [Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan] diced, chopped and minced all matter of fauna and flora with this excessively expensive and astoundingly beautiful knife. Its weight will melt a melon into two halves."
Can't afford these "astoundingly beautiful" knives, but still want the high quality guaranteed by Berti?
I recently met with David Reiss, President and Owner of Berti, at the NYIGF this year and he spoke to me about the Berti knives and their newest line of knives called the Compendio Series. It's got a stamped steel blade with a completely unique glass beads blasted finish on the blade and the handle. Very contemporary and modern looking in their funky selection of black, orange, and white lucite handles.
The blade edges, he told me, are finished by hand by an artisan just like all the other Berti knives.
The perk? The Berti Compendio chef's knife is only $120, making it the affordable choice for young professionals or young couples without a huge budget for the knives that made it to the Top 9 list of Consumers Report or the Berti forged kitchen knives but want a blade that looks stunning while getting the job done and then some.
Need more than one knife? Like, say, the ever useful utility knife and bread knife? Maybe a carver?
In keeping with the uber modern design concept behind the knives, the knife "block" for Compendio knives are also stunning. The fanning design makes them incredibly efficient at saving space, especially important if you have a small kitchen along with a (relatively) small knife budget.
Display the "block" or more like knife "fan" to show off the handles or turn it to display a dotted line of black, orange, or ice lucite knife heels. Stunning either way in function and form.