The Damascus Steel Clauss Kitchen Knife set offers the basic battery of four sizes and patterns—Chef, Bread, Slicer and Paring—every kitchen requires. TERRILL HOFFMAN PHOTO

For the last few years, the most popular “gourmet” kitchen cutlery lines have all been hard alloy cutting edges sandwiched between two layers of Damascus stainless steel. Not only does this provide strength to a relatively thin, sharp, high Rockwell steel core, it gives a very striking appearance to the finished knife. Some of the latest entries into this category are the Clauss Damascus Steel Kitchen Knives.

Set For The Chef
The basic set consists of four knives: an 8-inch Chef , 8-inch serrated Bread, 8-inch Carving and a 3.5-inch Paring. All have Damascus blades mounted on bamboo wood handles. The set comes complete with a compact storage block also made of bamboo. Clauss has taken the interesting approach of having their knives made in China from Japanese steel. The suggested retail for the four-knife set is $349.99.

Bamboo seems to be all the rage as an “environmentally friendly” wood for a number of applications in recent times. While I like the light, honey brown color of the material and have found it to be very durable, I’m not really sure why it is any more “green” than other types of hardwood. While it grows fast, is that really an advantage over say a maple that might occupy the same space for the next 40 years? Obviously, those growing bamboo would like you to think so. Given I’m growing maple, I tend to feel otherwise. In any case, I have nothing against the use of bamboo on these knives as it is still a very practical, hard-use handle material.

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The Damascus Steel Clauss Kitchen Knife set offers the basic battery of four sizes…