This month marks both my anniversary and my husband’s birthday. It’s hard enough coming up with creative gifts for a man year after year but when years become decades, it becomes quite the challenge. In addition to other skills, my husband is an excellent cook and enjoys good quality culinary tools.
That’s why I was thrilled to discover the beautiful creations of Coltellerie Berti. Founded in 1895 by David Berti, the Italian workshop continues today under the direction of his great grandson Andrea, in the Tuscany countryside, where the artisanal knives are handmade.
Still using the same original techniques and materials for over a hundred years, each knife is made by a single craftsman with his or her initials on the blade, for Berti’s intent is “to make knives with integrity and authenticity that cannot result from industrialized production.”
photos above via Berti
With over 600 styles, there is certainly a knife for every purpose. From pocket knives to truffle knives or cigar cutters, if it has a sharpened edge, chances are it is available. Left above, a set of Italian regional knives and on the right a “trousseau” of ox horn handled knives.
The traditional materials used are of course steel for the blade and Ox horn, Stag horn, Buffalo horn and “bosso” wood (boxwood) for the knife handles. But the strong tradition does allow for innovation such as the recent addition of lucite handles for the “Convivio Nuovo” line. While this material is still handcrafted, it allows the pieces to survive daily cycles in the dishwasher.
Imported in the States exclusively by Match, the Italian company of distinctive handmade pewter, Berti made their debut at the gift show in a handsome booth, where I took these photos. Not only are the knives themselves objects of beauty but the blocks are cleverly designed with magnetic attachments to form any number of arrangements. And note how each individual block shows a silhouette and name of the knife (albeit in Italian – all the more reason to learn) – no more guessing which blade belongs to which handle.
From extravagant sets, such as above for a serious cheese lover, or exquisite horn steak knives below
to individual pieces, every touch point is beautiful designed
The price points are not for the faint of heart but as Berti says, “The search for low cost production etc.. is fundamentally incompatible with our respect for Tradition and as such inconceivable.” I respect their love for heritage and a quality handmade product which serves as “A point of reference that helps us remember the world we come from and the values it inspired.” Perhaps I can gift a couple knives and explain we are starting our own tradition.
13 thoughts on “Cutting Edge Gifts for the Man Who has Everything”
Ah, that is an EXCELLENT idea. What guy wouldn’t love such a gift? In France, we have the Laguiole knives (which I am sure you know) and in the region we have le couteau Camarguais, which is made by the French cowboys! Very rough and tumble stuff. ;)
Oh forget my husband (who hates to cook), I would love a set (both our birthdays are this month). The photos on the side is genius. How could it not have been done before? I am quite drawn to the lucite handles and that cheese set is teasing me. My husband would appreciate the handcrafting and love watching the craftsman at work.
They really are pieces of art! Great ideas! franki
Probably lost on my husband as well…but my brother-inlaw would go crazy for some of these beautiful knives…We can’t keep the knife sharpener away from him at Thanksgiving. XO, Mona
This is my birthday and anniversary month as well and I can always use a good knife. I know good ones aren’t cheap but when you’re making a meal who wants to go cheap. Great ideas even for women.
LOVE this post, Stacey!! Did you know you can get all these knives on Taigan? Here’s the link. http://www.taigan.com/shops/bertiknives?view=all
You are posting on one of my favorite topics, cutlery. I love to cook, and a good knife is a must. This line is so beautiful, and I am heading over to visit their collection.
Happy anniversary and happy birthday to your husband.
Gorgeous. Mr. H’s kitchen tasks are typically more in the way of cleaning up than cutting and chopping (which is fine by me because I hate the clean up!) but I sure would love a set of these knives. Craftsmanship can make anything a thing of beauty!
What a great gift idea and our husbands would be all over those cheese knife sets… Sure beats having to spring for a culinary tour of Europe or something equally as extravagant. Then again, since these are made in Italy, the price is probably comparable!
C + C
Very good idea. I’m glad someone else finds it hard to shop for her husband!
A dear friend of mine just returned from a month in France and her husband proudly requested that she show me his gift….which was a beautiful knife! I said, now that is something so lovely, cuts straight away to the heart!
When is your anniversary? Mine or rather ours is this month too!
You always introduce the BEST stuff, I am off to check these out!
I would like to purchase a set of ox or stag handled Coltellerie steak knives. How can I acquire them?