The STEELPORT 10″ Bread Knife was reviewed and praised by The New York Times as “well-balanced” with a “handsome polished burled wood handle”, and “ease of use” that cuts through delicate loaves as easily as crusty ones, “slicing but not crushing”.
The STEELPORT 10” Bread Knife is as effective as it is unique. With our founders being self-admitting ‘carboholics’, it is no surprise that we have not held anything back from our mission of making the best Bread Knife and then some. This has even meant to design and build a machine with custom serration wheel for a pattern that delivers the optimum results especially for hard crust and soft inside. It is extremely rare to see a serrated knife with this amount of functional detail, and we have yet to see a single bread knife with both this type of serration pattern and steel hardness.
- We feel that the lack of high quality bread knives in the global market is caused by the combination of factors, including:
- A lack of respect for and study of this essential kitchen tool
The incorrect assumption that steel hardness and blade geometry aren’t as important on a serrated edge
- The difficulty for a custom knife maker to serrate a blade
In other words, the mass manufacturers don’t invest in producing this quality of blade, and most custom makers don’t have the capability to serrate (especially a wavy or reverse serration).
We consider the bread knife to be one of the three most essential kitchen knives, along with the chef and paring knife. No kit is complete without one.
All STEELPORT knives have the following prized features:
- American forged solid one piece construction
- 52100 carbon steel
- 65HRC steel hardness
- Differential heat treatment
- Fully polished blade including rounded spine and choil
- Resin stabilized and contoured Big Leaf Maple burl handle
- Coffee patina
The STEELPORT Bread Knife specifically also has:
- 10” blade length
- Curved blade for board clearance
- Custom wavy serration pattern
Why Do You Need a Serrated Knife?
A hard crust will dull a straight edge blade no matter the steel and edge quality.
Every cook comes across a hard-to-cut item where it feels like the blade, even when sharp, just slides over the surface of the food instead of slicing through it – and no one knows this better than the bread bakers and BBQ’er’s among us.
A serrated knife acts as a saw, and will not only cut through those hard to cut food items, but will also help preserve the edge on your other knives by sparing them those tasks.
Why a Wavy Serration?
Using the same high-performance steel used for all STEELPORT knives, we experimented with different angles and patterns to develop an ideal serration style. We found that our “wavy” pattern serration outperforms the traditional “pointy” serration in all aspects.
The wavy serration is much less damaging to your food and cutting board. The wavy edge allows one to use the blade more like a slicer and less like a saw, which results in fewer crumbs and cleaner cuts.
This makes the STEELPORT Bread Knife a much more versatile all-purpose knife, ideal for both the crustiest sourdough and the most delicate brioche.
What Are Serrated Knives Used For?
The STEELPORT Bread Knife is for so much more than bread!
Having a wavy edge allows you to cleanly cut foods that have a hard exterior and a soft interior, making this knife ideal for BBQ pit masters to slice brisket with a hard bark, chefs who like a hard sear on a delicate fish such as tuna, those who need to slice through something with a delicate pastry crust like a beef wellington, or pastry chefs slicing through cake for layering and shaping.
And for those who do not like a large blade, the Bread Knife works well on large fruit, such as watermelon.
What Are Serrated Knives Not Used For?
Tomatoes! Owning a serrated knife does not mean you can neglect your other knife edges. With regular honing, every chef knife should be able to cut tomatoes. Even with the best wavy serration, a bread knife will not have the same finesse as a straight edge. Cutting delicate items such as greens with a serrated blade can cause them to oxidize more quickly.
It’s also worth noting that serrated edges are not indestructible, and should be used with the same care as any other kitchen blade. Over the years, we have seen bread knives after they’ve been used for roofing, gardening, laying carpet, etc. – just because it looks like a saw doesn’t mean it can be used like one. Culinary knives should stay in the kitchen.
What Is Unique About the Steelport Bread Knife?
As mentioned, it is rare to see this level of craftsmanship in a bread knife. This Bread Knife comes with all the same premium features and performance you’ve come to expect from a STEELPORT knife as far as materials, finish, and construction – but with the addition of our wavy edge serration and a “swoop”, or curve, to the blade. This curve allows more range of motion and extra hand clearance on our already taller-than-average blade – which is 1” at heel – to keep you from hitting your knuckles on the board while slicing.
Our forged one-piece construction eliminates the “wobbly” flexing experience one encounters with most thinner stamped bread knife blades. And while the edge is at an unmatched 65HRC hardness, the tempered spine of 30HRC makes for an exceptionally durable blade.
We have also found that 10” is the ideal length for a Bread Knife (and Slicing Knife!). The goal is to be able to cut through food with the minimum amount of strokes, which results in cleaner and more efficient cuts. Shorter blades require too much sawing motion, and longer blades can be unwieldy and impractical in many kitchens.
Continuing our mission of combining tradition with innovation – we have had to build our own serration machine from scratch. The challenge with grinding any knife is avoiding heat creation, which meant we had to create a water cooled method with full control over the speed.
As with all of our knives, the edges are applied free-hand, but for added precision we built a machine including a 9.5” serration wheel which delivers on the target knife performance. Once our serrations are ground, we refine the teeth by stropping with leather, which creates a fine but still toothy edge.
Below is a quick demonstration from our team member using our custom serration machine:
Caring for Your Bread Knife
Treat your bread knife with the same care as your other knives – always use a cutting board, avoid cutting on plates and countertops, no dishwasher, and don’t cut anything you wouldn’t use your teeth on (no bones and frozen foods).
A difference in care is when it comes to sharpening and honing. For serrated knives, you cannot use a honing rod, or a whetstone to resharpen. This is the rare instance where we recommend using the services of a professional to manually replicate and sharpen the serration.
All blades need to be resharpened eventually, but thanks to our proprietary differential heat treatment, with normal use the serrated edges of your STEELPORT Bread Knife will not need to be resharpened very often.