Kitchn Love Letters

This Pared-Down Knife Set (Actually) Deserves a Spot on Your Counter

published Nov 18, 2022
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Credit: Kilne

Crow: It’s what’s for dinner. Sorry, let me backtrack a little here: As a professional cookware and kitchen tool tester, I’ve written my fair share of knife reviews in the past. And, a running theme in those articles tends to be something along the lines of, “you really don’t need a knife block that takes up precious counter space, since you’re never going to use them all, and blah, blah, blah.” Well, folks, I was wrong — kinda. 

My main gripe with knife blocks is that they’re usually clunky, oversized hunks of dull wood that almost always include slots for, like, six or seven serrated steak knives, and the other knives that tend to be included in the sets are usually sub-par. So, I do think a lot of knife blocks are redundant, unnecessary purchases that people buy just because they think they need to have a knife block to have a complete, adult kitchen. (Then again, I live in a tiny apartment with virtually no counter space, so I could just be jealous.) Regardless, my stance on knife blocks has recently changed. Why? Well, because I picked up The Knife Set from Kilne. 

Right off the bat, let me just say that I would have been thrilled to receive even just one of the knives in this set, but as I just moved into a new apartment, the whole set has been a lifesaver. The reason I like it so much is because it’s just the essentials, with a little extra. You only really need three knives in your arsenal: a chef’s knife, a paring knife, and a bread knife, and The Knife Set has all of those and more. In the set, you get an 8-inch chef’s knife, a 7-inch santoku knife (which is great for chop-style cutting), an 8-inch bread knife, and a 3.5-inch paring knife. They also throw in a honing rod for keeping your knives sharp, and a pair of wicked sharp kitchen shears, which I find super useful for tasks such as spatchcocking chickens. 

The knives are made using high-quality chromium German steel that’s built to last, and are fully forged, which means that the blade is one long piece of metal that runs through the tang of the knife, lending the whole thing balance and strength. Plus, the handle is comfy and easy to grip. I can personally attest that these bad boys cut like a dream, and though I’ve only been using them for a few weeks, I can already tell that they’re going to stay sharp in the months to come. 

Credit: Kilne

The coolest part of the set — and I’d never in a million years imagined I’d write this — is the block itself. Primarily because [drum roll] it’s magnetic! That means I’m able to store knives that I already owned but didn’t really have a place for on the sides of the block itself, so the knife block actually adds storage space in my kitchen. Wild. You also have the option to purchase steak knives that come in their own blocks that magnetically snap on to to main block, if you (unlike me) have the counter space.

And, in case you’re not acquainted, Kilne is a Canadian brand that aims to make sure everyone has quality cookware They also have a partnership with Second Harvest Canada, which is a charitable organization that recovers fresh, unsold food to protect the environment and provide immediate hunger relief, so you can feel good about supporting them. Oh, and I’m not the only one who’s into the brand’s knives — they have almost 500 five-star reviews on the site, and fans can’t get enough. “I love my new Kilne knife set,” one reviewer writes. “The compact block doesn’t take up too much counter space and looks amazing … I’ve used them for everything from chopping onions and carrots to cutting squash to slicing through ripe tomatoes.” 

So, if you’re looking for a quality set of knives that don’t take up a ton of space on the counter — and can convert even the staunchest knife-block-hater — look no further. 

Buy: The Knife Set, $210