Essential kitchen knives

Essential kitchen knives A set of quality kitchen knives is what you need for a good start in serious home cooking. Having made this fundamental point, the next question is:  which knives should be included in the essential kitchen knives set?

 Chef's knife - handcrafted by Berti of ItalyA chef’s knife is a must-have in the kitchen: it cuts, minces, slices, dices, and chops. You’ll spend a great deal of time together, you and your chef’s knife, so take your time to select  the chef’s knife that you feel is right for you and be prepared to drop a pretty penny on it. One thing you should not absolutely compromise on is the quality of the stainless steel: it must be premium quality, high carbon steel.

Paring knife - handcrafted by Berti of ItalyA paring knife is good for precision jobs, like peeling, coring and larding. It’s the ideal partner of the chef’s knife and its opposite in many ways:  a paring knife is small, light, with a thin blade that usually tapers to a point. You may even want to purchase two of them, one with a straight edge, and one with a serrated edge.

Bread knife - handcrafted by Berti of ItalyNo other knife is able to slice perfectly through a freshly made croissant or a crunchy loaf of bread without smashing them into crumbles. It does an excellent job with ripe tomatoes and anything that has a hard shell with a soft inside. A good bread knife lasts a lifetime, as a serrated blade maintains a sharp edge for many years.

Berti Cutlery: nothing but the best

It’s high time to introduce Mr Andrea Berti, the man behind the huge success of Berti Cutlery, the Italian company that has been delighting the world with its premium quality knives for more than a century.

Andrea’s great grandfather, David, founded the company in 1895 in Scarperia, the sacred land of Italian knives. He was a talented knife maker and knew very well that there was only one way to beat his copious, well established competitors: make better cutlery.

He adopted a no-compromise strategy, selecting first-rate materials and the best fellow artisans in the region. Furthermore he set a rule that at the time did not seem so important but that was to be decisive for the future of his workshop: all his knives must be handmade using traditional methods.
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Introducing high end Italian knives from Scarperia

In the last few weeks we’ve been working really hard on a new, very exciting project: high end Italian knives.

Actually the project is not really “new” as it started in the Summer of 2011, when I drove to Scarperia to see in person what was left of the city’s century old knife making tradition. As usual I had done my homework: I had read all I could find about the knife makers who have resisted the siren call of mass production and decided to stay small and keep the high standards of their craftsmanship.

I walked the main street of this charming Medieval town where all the well-regarded knife makers have their stores. That was awesome: unlike ceramics where a hesitation in the hand of the painter is considered a sign that the product is handmade, handcrafted knives are so perfect in every detail that is really hard to believe that a man, however talented, can achieve such a high degree of precision.
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