I have to admit to speechless wonder when I unwrapped this knife, From the handle to the tip it is a thing of absolute beauty. The workmanship is flawless, The patina on the blade is utterly original. The edge was wicked sharp and the bevel perfectly even. The handle is not only gorgeous but marries to the tang seamlessly. It was immediately and patently obvious the amount of time, dedication and skill that went into this custom piece. But custom tools, no matter their intrinsic beauty, are either displayed or used. I decided to use mine.
Cooks knife as a working tool
So, I've been using the knife both at home and at work. My position as lodge chef is not an executive one. I'm responsible for administrative work, but I personally and solely prepare three meals per day. I cut my own veg, prepare my own proteins, make my own desserts. If a carrot needs chopped, I chop it. I guess what I'm trying to convey is that I spend a great deal of time with a knife in my hand.
So saying, after many hours of using your knife, here are the observations I've made. Please understand that while they are apparent to me, it's only my opinion, other's might disagree, but this is what I've experienced.
The knife essentially rocks! I use a butcher's steel to touch up my blades and the steel of "The Bear" responds beautifully. The edge stays tacky sharp with minimum effort; I believe in a quick whip with the steel regularly and often to maintain edge integrity, and this knife seems to agree with me. I like the depth between spine and edge at the heel. My fingers are beat up and swollen, and they have lots of clearance between handle and cutting board. Also the lack of the ridiculous German bolster extension found on the Wustof and Henckel knives is welcome. The sweep of the edge from heel to tip is dramatic. I wasn't sure how this would affect the operation, but it rockers effectively when cutting veg; this motion is where the tip stays on the board but the blade "rockers" up and down at a tremendous rate, particularly if girls are watching. The balance is perfect, and I can use it for extended periods without hand fatigue or cramping. You'd be surprised how many expensive knives become utterly painful to use after an hour or so of hard chopping.
Congratulations sir, on your talent and craftsmanship. The knife speaks to the level of passion and dedication to your craft. I'm honoured to have been chosen as a recipient. I'll cook for you any time.