20 Cooks, 20 Knives: This month, we're taking a close look at a chef's most important tool: her knife. We asked 20 cooks, amateurs and professionals, to share their favorite knives and the stories behind them. While chef's knives are featured prominently, no two are exactly alike, and there are also a few surprises.
Profession: Bagel Baker/Chef
City: Los Angeles
This bagel butcher doesn't mess around when it comes to knives (mostly because it's not safe, duh). Belle's Bagels co-founder Nick Schreiber has rained down his coveted hand-rolled bagels on, what he refers to as, the "bagel desert" of LA, recently settling on a home inside Highland Park's Hi Hat music venue. His favorite knife may look like a run-of-the-mill Cutco bread knife, but a closer look reveals it is only meant for a true bagel slayer.
What is your go-to knife? I was recently gifted a Cutco serrated knife for my 30th birthday with the engraving "Valyrian Spiel" on it. I usually never use serrated bread knives, but now that my life is all bagels all the time, this has quickly become my favorite.
How long have you had it? A little over a month, but I have a feeling this knife will outlast me.
Why did you choose it? I didn't choose it. It chose me. Also, my good friends Sam and Keiko helped the knife choose me.
Do you sharpen it yourself or pay to get it sharpened? Sharpening serrated knives can be a bit tricky. Apparently, Cutco will sharpen your knives for free, which is totally cool with me. I'm really busy these days waking up insanely early, baking bagels, and eating bagels.
Where do you keep it? I keep it in a beautiful leather Goodson knife roll that my girlfriend got for me. That thing is a work of art.
Are you possessive about your knife? Is anyone else allowed to use it? Anyone can use it, but only one can harness its true power: me.
Does your knife have a name? Yes. Sir-Rated of House Cutcothian. Cutter of Bagels. First of Its Name.
What's the last thing that you made really well using your knife? We make this one incredible bagel sandwich that has beet cream cheese, Michele Cordon Bleu lox, dill, and crispy salmon skin. You better believe I use this knife to cut the bagel for that sandwich.