Kitchen knives are not one-size-fits-all tools. Sometimes you need a serrated bread knife, others a long slicing knife. And some days all you need is the short, precision tool we call the paring knife.
Wusthof is known as one of Germany’s premier cutlery manufacturers. It originated from Solingen— the “City of Blades”— and produce some of the finest forged knives in the world. In fact, their chef’s knife was our pick for Best Kitchen Knife to Buy.
Let’s see if the brand’s smaller pieces live up to our expectations.
Wusthof CLASSIC Paring Knife Review: Defining Features
A paring knife is the tool of choice for precision work in the kitchen. Small fruits, shallots, herbs, etc. and tasks like peeling and chopping are what a paring knife is mainly for.
The Wusthof WU4066/09 CLASSIC parer does not disappoint in those regards, not with its features:
Forged High-Carbon Stainless Steel
Before you can make a high-quality knife, you must first find high-quality material. The vast majority of kitchen cutlery on the market today is made of stainless steel, which is not a bad choice. But compared to high carbon steel, they are less durable, more susceptible to rust, and more difficult to sharpen.
The high carbon steel used to make this Wusthof WU4066/09 CLASSIC is tempered to a rating of 58 on the Rockwell Hardness Scale. The rating means that the blade is not too hard that it’s prone to chipping but just enough to achieve high sharpness.
Patented Edge-Grinding Technique
Wusthof boasts that their Precision Edge Technology (PEtec) makes for a sharper, longer-lasting cutting edge. We always take catchy technology titles with a grain of salt, but in this case, whatever they do seems to work.
It does make sense that a precision robotic grinding process would yield more consistent and finer results than a human would.
One of the wonderful things about forged knives is they are nearly always full-tang designs. The metal is a single piece from the tip of the blade to the end of the handle. This gives you the best possible leverage and makes them less likely to fall apart than partial-tang or rat-tail designs.
High-end forged knives like the Wusthof also features robust bolsters. A bolster refers to the thicker part by the end of a blade, where it meets the handle. A large and well-reinforced bolster offers both your hand and the blade more support and leverage.
Most cooks prefer a full bolster to a half bolster or no bolster at all (traditional Japanese knives).
The scales on the handle of this parer is made of polyoxymethylene, or POM, and isn’t much different than any other decent polymer knife handle. Polymers like this tend to last longer than pure wood, cheaper, and provide decent grit ratings.