Chicago Cutlery Fusion Bamboo Knife Block Set

18 Piece Stainless Full Tang

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Chicago Cutlery Fusion Knife Block Set You may actually be more tempted by the extra deals Chicago Cutlery offers with this 18 piece Block Set than by the knives themselves. Eight prep knives, eight steak knives, a sharpening steel and a laminated bamboo block make up the primary package, but wait! There's more!

Of course there is, but let's look at the knives first. The steak knives, stamped stainless steel blades with seamless stainless steel 18/10 handles, are nicely designed--but may not be essential to an established kitchen. The assortment of prep knives, with forged steel blades, bolsters and end caps and black composite wrap around grips, include some that are essential and others that are borderline. I'd like to see a larger Chef's knife in the set rather than the "Partoku" (Chicago's combination Santoku and paring knife). The blades in this selection run shorter than usual, from 3 1/4" for the standard paring knife to 7 3/4" for the Chef's knife. For many people this assortment will seem a little bit small.

The forged blades have the heft of traditional patterns, but these old designs have been surpassed in efficiency by newer, thinner, laser cut patterns from other manufacturers. Chicago knives also need frequent honing, preferably before every use. Hand washing is recommended.

On the other hand, you get three cheese knives with turned wood handles, kitchen shears and an $85 gift certificate from Omaha Steaks for a choice of gourmet meal packages. It's all a good deal, but not a great deal.

If you're looking for a smaller set, see the Chicago Cutlery Landmark knife block set.

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