The Most Popular Kitchen Knife Brands
I find it very important to know a little about the brand from whom I am purchasing any product. From the technological approach to their environmental stance, I believe it is important to know if the integrity and overall outlook a particular company holds is similar to my own moral beliefs. I have included this article on top kitchen knife brands to bring you just that information, in case you feel similarly.
As I am sure you have realized, I spent considerable time researching each of the knives and accessories on this website. I felt it was only proper to devote just as much attention to their brands as I did to their specifications. Since many of the knives were manufactured under the same brand names, I figured it was best to put all of this information in one place, rather than dispersing it throughout this website, so that you could locate it much easier.
You may notice, as you move through this article, that some of these brands are subsidiaries of umbrella companies and corporations. In these cases, I have done my best to bring you information about the umbrella organizations, more so than the brand names, as those organizations are the ones which determine the company’s overall outlook and approach to both construction and customer service. As always, I encourage you to go forward and complete your own research if you are, in any way, concerned about certain stances and policies a company may hold.
J. A. Henckels International
Named for Johann Abraham Henckels, J. A. Henckels is actually part of a larger company called the Zwilling Group which was established in 1731. J. A. Henckels became a part of the Zwilling group in its early years and has remained an integral part of the company ever since. Known for its quality German craftsmanship, this company creates knives with precision care gleaned from years of experience and research. Henckel’s main focus is on blade strength, blade density, and overall solid construction. Whereas some newer companies rely on repeated purchases, this company aims to build knives which will stand the test of time and relies mostly on word of mouth to advertise their superior quality.
Their belief in quality over convenience has maintained a centuries-old forging process in which each knife undergoes rigorous, manual construction. As a company, J. A. Henckels and the Zwilling Group are committed to human rights, and it brings work to many foreign countries for fair wages.
Makers of the world-famous Swiss Army Knife, Victorinox is also well known for their kitchen knives, cutlery, watches, fragrances, apparel, and travel gear. Founded in 1884 by Karl Elsener, this company is a big part of why Swiss craftsmanship is respected and admired worldwide. Over 130 years in the industry has helped Victorinox perfect their crafting processes to bring you some of the best blades on the planet.
The company’s major focus is on quality and infuses innovation into tradition to bring you just that. It is also a company committed to sustainable business practices which place environmentalism near the top of their priorities.
We all know that Germany is famous for its quality knives and forged steel production. Wusthof, among a couple of other prominent names on this list, is a big part of why Germany is known for such quality.
Founded in 1814, this company has over 200 years of experience in creating kitchen knives and forging blades. Still based out of Germany, Wusthof maintains their traditional process of forging blades, but has added a technological element to help them create perfectly crafted blades for those with special needs, in addition to their inventory of regular knives.
Shun and Pure Komachi
You may not have guessed it, but the Shun knives and Pure Komachi knives listed on this website come from the same parent company – the Kai Corporation.
Despite creating knives under multiple names, this company strives to embody everything the word ‘Shun’ describes. ‘Shun’ (which is pronounced “shoon”, as the company loves to point out) is a word which represents the peak of ripeness – a perfect point of purity and succulence. Similar to fruits at their own peak of ripeness, all Kai products are built to represent the best of the best in terms of their construction and aesthetic appeal.
Each piece is forged by hand with expert precision. What sets this company apart from many others is that it has held onto the Japanese tradition of viewing blade creation as an art form more so than a construction process.
Chicago Cutlery is part of the World Kitchen family which also includes such prominent names as Corelle, Pyrex, and Baker’s Secret. Based in the United States but with sales worldwide, this company focuses on innovation and customer service in all that they do.
Not much information can be found of Chicago Cutlery or World Kitchen’s history or approach to business. Personally, I think that they are trying to let their quality products speak for themselves.
Dalstrong has devoted their entire company solely to the creation of kitchen knives. Personally, I love this. I know that larger companies who produce multiple types of products are often better known and, thus, have reputations. However, the simple fact that this company does only one thing tells me that they are likely to do it much better than many of those other companies who are stretched so thin they do not have time to perfect one thing before moving on to another.
This large, family-run company focuses attention on creating quality forged blades and ergonomically-supportive handles.
Founded in Switzerland in 1948 with the invention of the garlic press, Zyliss is one of the younger companies on our list of brands. That being said, they still boast over 65 years of experience in the world kitchen knives, goods, and gadgetry.
In everything they do, Zyliss aims to make your life more enjoyable, which is easy to believe with a slogan like “Happy Cooking”. They try to make cooking fun by infusing color and comfort into your cooking experience. In addition, they try to bring innovative ideas and technology into the mix to create tools which are easier to use.
In many parts of the world OXO stands for hugs and kisses. What better name could there be for a company created out of a man’s desire to help his arthritic wife peel a potato with ease? Since introducing the potato peeler to the American marketplace in 1990, this company has spread around the world.
Staying true to its original purposes and aims, OXO strives to find things that aren’t working quite right and make them function better. They aim to bring more convenience to your kitchen by creating products which are easy to use. From kitchen knives and gadgetry to gardening tools and whole-home storage solutions, OXO works hard to bring convenience to every part of your home.
A family-run business and still in its early years, Zelite was created with the intention of shaking up the culinary industry. This company prides itself on innovation. They saw that many knife companies were sticking with tradition so steadfastly that they hadn’t moved into the twentieth century, let alone the twenty-first. So Zelite decided to be the one to make a change in the industry by experimenting with different blade types and construction processes. Interestingly, though they pride themselves on innovation and change, all Zelite knives reflect the aesthetic appeal of traditional knives. At this time, their focus remains on kitchen knives, but I can bet that they will expand in the years to come and begin making all sorts of cutlery and gadgetry.
Part of the North American culinary industry for over thirty years, Mercer Culinary creates some of the most finely-crafted cutlery, turners, servers, plating tools, kitchen knives, and accessories on today’s market. This company supplies culinary tools to some of the most prestigious culinary institutes in North America. They consult with top chefs for feedback and advice in creating quality products at affordable prices.
Founded in 1959 in Kyoto, Japan, Kyocera pride themselves on their ability to break away from certain Japanese traditions to venture into the world of ceramic. One of the first companies to realize ceramic’s applicability to the kitchen knife world, Kyocera also creates peelers, slicers, grinders, graters, cookware, pens, and scissors.
Ontario Knife Company
Though one may suspect that this company originated in Ontario, Canada, it is actually an American company from upstate New York. Though the Ontario Knife company focuses its attention mostly on hunting and camping knives, it does incorporate a few kitchen knives, a few of which have been reviewed on this website.
Founded in 1889, the Ontario Knife Company has a long history in the United States and has worked with the United States Armed Forces for many years.
Apparently, a good kitchen knife cannot be pinned down to a handful of brand names and companies. The knives on this website have come from a wide range of companies.
Above, I included brief information about those brands and companies whose knives were featured most often and most prominently on this website. Many of the other brands and companies reviewed here also deserve mention. Here is a list of the other brands and companies, so that you may take some time to go out and research them yourself if you like: Fixwell, Tyrellex, Imarku, Mac Knife, Chef Remi, Wislife, KitchenAid, BlizeTec, Simple Health, B-Chef, Vos, Orblue, Cuisinart, Rada Cultery, Yoshi Blades, AmazonBasics, Okami, Equinox.