There's an old superstition that says that it's bad luck to give knives as gifts because they will sever the ties of friendship. What I didn't know is that there's a way around it - you should give the knives with a penny attached to the box which the recipient then gives straight back. This means that he's paid for the knives so they weren't a gift and therefore the bad luck is negated. That's great news if you have a keen cook in your midst because the Edge of Belgravia Precision Chef Knife Series would make an ideal present.
Inside the box, you get four knives which cover all your basic cutting requirements in the home kitchen : a 19cm Slicing Knife (with alternating scallops on both sides to reduce drag and allow for easy separation from the knife), a 19cm Chef's Knife (perfect for dicing, slicing, chopping and mincing), a 19cm Bread Knife (with a serrated edge so that the bread remains airy) and a 15cm Filleting Knife (for filleting and boning meat and fish).
All in black, with a sleek avant-garde design created by contemporary London designer Christian Bird, they are as funky as they are functional.
They really look the business displayed on the work top in the equally sleek knife block (available to buy separately) but I love the idea of using a melon or a cabbage as a presentation block too !
So, they're nice to look at but how do they fare in the kitchen? Well, the first thing that I noticed is that they are very comfortable to use. I'd switched over to ceramic knives which are supposed to be superior to everything else when it comes to slicing, but I was also very impressed at how well these knives, which use a softer more affordable stainless steel to reduce the price point, also cut extremely well. They made short work of a pile of onions and didn't slip on the skins, as some of my older knives do.
When cutting through some rather crumbly cheddar, I noticed that the blade remained clean - usually I have to keep stopping to pull off bits of cheese that have got stuck to the blade - which made the slicing process much quicker and easier.
They also appear to squash delicate food much less than some of my other knives - these halved olives remained perfectly round, whereas they usually end up oval shaped, sometimes with a broken centre. The performance of the other knives in the set is equally impressive - the bread knife in particular gets my seal of approval because my homemade bread from the bread machine is much easier to slice and I no longer massacre my loaves with torn edges and squashed crusts.
Apart from my two ceramic knives, which invariably end up in the wash when I need them, especially if I'm making a complicated dish involving raw meat or fish, most of my knives are donkeys' years old. I'd never realised how much difference it would make to have a nice new set of stylish and above all sharp knives to use in the kitchen, so if you're still bravely struggling on with a knife drawer full of relics, I highly recommend splashing out on a new set - or put one on your Christmas wishlist but don't forget to tell the giver to stick a coin on the box !
star rating : 5/5
RRP : £79.90 for the Professional Four Piece Set
for more information : https://www.edgeofbelgravia.co.uk/collections/precision
Disclosure : I received the product in order to write an honest review.