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Knives | Manolo's Basement of the Bargains
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Be a Cut Up, Slash the Price

Henckels Carving Set Few names in knives command the respect Henckels does. They are noted for high quality, long wear, and a certain elegance of design. Even a glance at this beautiful carving setshows you precisely why they are so admired.

Of course, having such a good name means they can command a high price as well as respect. In fact, this set usually sells for $265.00. It’s not unreasonable for an investment, but it’s hardly chicken feed, either.

Imagine my delighted surprise when I found the same set on sale at Cooking.com for just $129.99! That’s less than half price!

I can’t be cut up over that.

Friday Finds: The Santa’s Little Helper Edition

Normally I stick to things under fifty dollars on friday, but in honor of the official opening of the holiday shopping season, I’ve decided to ignore the limit this week. You’ll find goodies under fifteen dollars and others over two hundred. After all, you’ve got everyone from your Secret Santa at work to your lifelong best friend, to your immediate family on your list. You need inspiration from all price points.

Swiss Army Knife One of the handiest gadgets of all time is the classic Swiss army knife. Now Victorinox has reinvented it in a miniature size with stainless steel blades. At just 2 1/4″ long, it attaches to your key ring for your convenience. It comes with: one small knife blade, scissors, and a nail file. The practical soul on your holiday gift list will love this.

Normally, it runs $140.00, but Saks Fifth Ave is having a huge sale now through the 28th. Right now, even the sale items are on sale. The sale price on this item was $104.00, but now to Saturday it just $62.94!

Oh, and be sure to check out the bonus offers combined with the sale!  For instance, you can get free shipping by using code HOLIDAY9. If you spend at least $400.00 in Contemporary, you can get a $100.00 off card with code CONTEM9. And if you spend at least $100.00 in beauty and you can earn a $25.00 gift card with code BEAUTY9.


Carve Out a Great Deal

If you spend any time at all in your kitchen, then you know how important good knives are, both for ease of effort, elegance of result, and safety while cooking.

One of the best names in the business is Henkels. They’re beautifully balanced, sturdily constructed, comfortable in the hand, and quite attractive to look at, to boot. They keep an edge well, too. In fact, the one drawback to Henkels is the retail price. The penny they cost is every bit as pretty as they are.

Henkels Knife Set The good news is that sales are out there if you know where to look for them. You might start at Cooking.com where this gorgeous 11-piece knife set is on sale for less than half price.

You’ll get:

  • 2.5-in. Peeling Knife
  • 4-in. Paring/Utility Knife
  • 5-in. Serrated/Utility Knife
  • 6-in. Utility/Sandwich Knife
  • 8-in. Chef’s Knife
  • 7-in. Santoku Hollow Edge
  • 8-in. Bread Knife
  • 4.5-in. Steak/Utility Knife
  • Kitchen Shears
  • 9-in. Sharpening Steel
  • Hardwood Block
  • How much would you pay for all of that? Retailers would like you to pay $486.00. Cooking.com usually would like you to pay $229.99 if you buy now.

    I think I like that price a lot better.

    Hail to the Chef!

    When my parents first met, my mother admired a top-quality 12″ chef’s knife. She told my father how much she wanted it. My father went back later and bought it for her birthday. He spent the next few days in a cold sweat, certain that she would hand him his hat as soon as he handed her that knife. After all, it wasn’t a terribly romantic gift coming from a boyfriend…let alone as his first gift to her. He needn’t have worried so. Mom was an enthusiastic cook who knew good kitchenware. They lived happily ever after and had four kids.

    Me? I’m my mother’s daughter. Good cookware gives me a thrill. There’s nothing like holding a really good kitchen knife in your hand. Mom taught me a lot about the importance of really excellent knives in the kitchen. They hold their edges better so they don’t go dull in the middle of a job. The handles are sturdy and won’t come to wobble later in life. They’re comfortable in the hand so you can cut what you need without tiring your hands unduly. Oh, and that birthday gift? Outlasted Mom. That’s a good knife, when it can last more than thirty years of daily use and still be in good enough shape to keep on using.

    There are several excellent companies making just such knives today, but my go to knife at home is a Wusthof. It’s incredibly comfortable in the hand, holds an edge beautifully, and is easy to manage. And that’s why I was so excited when I took a glance in the sale section at Williams Sonoma this morning:

    Wusthof Twelve Inch Chef’s Knife The Wusthof 12″ chef’s knife is a full foot of fabulous disguised as kitchen equipment. With this baby you can handle anything from a roast to a cabbage with aplomb and precision.

    Even on sale it’s not cheap, but then again, when you add up what you would spend on replacing a mediocre chef’s knife every few years against what you’ll spend on buying this level of quality once, it really is a savings.

    And speaking of savings, they really are tremendous right now. This baby usually sells for a cool $500.00. Right now, though, at Williams Sonoma, the price has been slashed to just $399.95. What’s more, if you spend $299.00 worth on Wusthof Classic Cutlery, you’ll get a free in-drawer, seven-slot beechwood insert to hold your knives safely for free ($19.95 retail value, see site for details).

    I don’t know about you, but I think this handsome knife would be the perfect first denizen of that insert.

    Cut Price, Not Cut Rate

    My mother always said that with kitchen knives, you get what you pay for. With all due respect to dear old mom who knew a thing or two, I’ve found a case where that wisdom doesn’t hold true.

    Wusthof Knife and Scissors set Wusthof knives don’t usually come cheap. What’s more, they’re worth every penny. Mine gets a workout nearly every day, and is in just as good shape now as it was when it was given to me as a wedding gift nearly sixteen years ago.

    Right now, though, there’s a superfantastic deal going on at Sur La Table. The set you see above, consisting of a 6″ utility knife and a pair of shears, usually sells for $125.00. If you move quickly, though, you can get the set for just $39.99!

    Sorry, Mom, but sometimes you get more than you pay for…even with good knives.

    Cuts Like a (Bread) Knife

    What’s the best thing since sliced bread? Something to slice unsliced bread. You need a decent knife with a good serrated blade to do the job properly. You need something like this knife:

    Wusthof Bread Knife Wusthof makes some of the best knives going for the home cook/baker. This Grand Prix II bread knife has a 9″ high-carbon, no-stain steel alloy blade that keeps its edge well. The contoured polypropylene handle is designed for a steady, comfortable grip. It’s also well-balanced, which makes for both comfort and control when using. In short, it would be difficult to imagine a better bread knife.

    Of course, the deal I found on it doesn’t hurt one bit. Regularly priced at $89.95 , it’s on sale right now at Williams Sonoma for just $54.99! Now there’s a price that won’t cut too deeply into your budget.

    Loony for Mezzaluna

    A mezzaluna is a terribly handy device. It’s a half-moon-shaped knife designed for easy mincing of herbs, onions, and garlic. Traditionally, it’s used on a slightly bowl-shaped board to accomodate the shape of the knife and keep the items being chopped in order. And here’s what it looks like, for those of you who’ve never seen one:

    Neem Wood Mezzaluna This lovely neem wood mezzaluna set comes with not only the mezzaluna (what? it’s a fun word to type) and neem wood cutting board with bowl-shaped indentation, but with three stainless steel cheese knives as well. The three knives and the mezzaluna all store neatly in the drawer underneath the cutting board. And the case can be flipped for use as a flat cutting surface as well. As for the wood, neem is a tropical evergreen from Southeast Asia that’s more durable than teak. And just look at that gorgeous grain!

    Normally the set you see here would cost $79.95 from Cooking.com, but it’s on sale now for just $59.99! Think of it: four blades and two cutting surfaces all in a compact yet decorative storage case, all for just about the price of a nice dinner out. Plus you get the fun of saying mezzaluna. It’s even more fun to say than it is to type.