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For the pastry chef who has everything: the chocolate knife

October 01, 2012|By S. Irene Virbila
  • Coltellerie Berti small chocolate knife.
Coltellerie Berti small chocolate knife. (Coltellerie Berti )

Not just any chocolate knife, but one made by Berti, the 117-year-old Tuscan artisanal knife producer known for its beautifully crafted cheese and kitchen knives for four generations.

At the Berti workshop in Tuscany 20 miles north of  Florence, each piece is made from start to finish by the same craftsman, an unusual holdover from another era. This is no production line, but a serious work of craftsmanship informed by the hand of one person. That means the knives from Cotellerie Berti are more expensive than industrially produced versions. But it also means they are unique.

I’ve always coveted their cheese knives, but the chocolate knife is something special too, designed to easily cut those pesky hard blocks of dark baking chocolate. And sure to win the heart of any serious pastry chef — or anyone who religiously bakes his or her way through Alice Medrich’s chocolate books. 

The chocolate knife is available at Garde on Beverly Boulevard. They also carry Berti’s beautiful cheese knife sets, including one with tortoise lucite handles and pale grey blades. A very special present for any turophile (cheese fancier) or culinary school graduate.

7418 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles; (323) 424-4667; www.gardeshop.com. Berti chocolate knife, $275. For more information about the knives, visit Cotellerie Berti’s website at www.coltellerieberti.it.

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