Wüsthof Classic Ikon 7-Piece Block Set Review

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This is a review of the Wüsthof Classic Ikon 7-Piece Block Set, featuring both PROs and CONs of the product. We have been testing this set for the past 2 weeks in our kitchen. (photo from Williams Sonoma)

Wüsthof Classic Ikon 7-Piece Block Set Review

The Wüsthof Classic Ikon 7-Piece Block Set includes:

  • 3 1/2″ paring knife.
  • 6″ utility knife.
  • 8″ chef’s knife.
  • 8″ bread knife.
  • 9″ honing steel.
  • Stainless-steel pull-apart shears.
  • 13-slot storage block.

PRO:  This 7-piece set includes the essentials of any kitchen – it’s a great starter set to build upon. The block has 7 additional slots for more knives.


 

Classic Ikon vs. Classic Knives

The Wüsthof Ikon line of knives is an upgrade from their signature line, Wüsthof Classic (top knife)

Both knives are made from the same steel, handle material, same precision forging and same hand-sharpened blade. The difference is in ergonomics and modern look.

Handle Design

PRO: The Classic Ikon has an improved handle design, the edges are rounded and it fits the hand very well, whether you have large hands or smaller hands. It just fits so well. No hard, squared off edges, like the Classic (which tends to dig into my hand)

Shortened Bolster

PRO: Shortening the bolster (the thicker metal portion between blade and handle) is a big upgrade:

  • You can utilize the entire length of the edge, and you can sharpen entire length of the blade’s edge. When cutting through dense foods like butternut squash, I like to use the back corner of the edge to whack and tap the squash in one spot to start the cut.
  • More comfort. Instead of the pronounced and thick edge of the Classic bolster, the Ikon bolster is tapered gently.


(photo from Williams Sonoma)

CON: The shortened bolster also means you have to be aware of a very sharp back edge of blade. It’s not a problem with the thicker, larger chef’s knife, but the 6″ utility knife is thinner (which is a great thing…I’ll show you later), which makes a very sharp corner. I don’t mind it, but I do have to be more mindful of that corner.

Back Bolster = Balance

PRO: Wüsthof has also added the bolster at the end of the knife, to finish off the handsome look, and to provide more weight to the handle. This makes the knife more balanced in hand, especially when chopping. The added heft also makes it easier to mince or dice – rocking back and forth is effortless and stable, something that I could never get with my lightweight, thin Global knives.

The Wüsthof Blade

All of Wüsthof’s knives are made from X50CrMoV15 stainless steel, with Precision Edge Technology.

Wüsthof’s computer-controlled robotic machines sharpens each knife for a smoother, sharper edge than any other method. The result is an edge that stays sharp, 2x longer, according to Wüsthof.

Rockwell Hardness of 58.

The knives are sharpened to 14 degrees, a more steeper angle than nearly all European style knives. The produces a sharper, finer edge that allows for more precise cuts.

PRO: A finer, sharper edge angle, which is traditional of most Asian knives. The blade stays sharp, twice as long as their competitors. The true test of Wüsthof blades: I’ve been using the same Wüsthof Classic Bread Knife for over 15 years. It’s only used for breads, but it’s never been sharpened because of its serrated edge. I tested side by side – new Classic Ikon vs. my old Classic. Both sliced through day-old, crusty French loaves with the ease. The newer knife had sharper serration points, of course, but the edge of my 15 year old knife performed just as well.

The Knives

The Wüsthof Classic Ikon knives are incredibly comfortable. My two favorite knives in the set:

The Wüsthof Classic Ikon 8″ Bread Knife. I’ll never use a another bread knife, and am finally retiring my 15-year old Wüsthof Classic!

My other favorite knife is the 6″ Utility Knife. When I first unpacked this knife, I thought that, for sure, I wouldn’t get much use out of it. Too short for a slicing knife, not enough curve to belly to mince or chop.

But I was wrong, it’s a great slicing knife for small foods. The thinner blade allowed me so much control over slicing.

Truly razor thin slices of tomato.

Classic Ikon vs. Ikon

Wüsthof’s Ikon line is made of Classic Ikon, and Ikon. The difference between the two is the handle material. Classic Ikon handles are made from durable, synthetic polypropylene, and the Ikon handles are made from African Blackwood, one of the hardest and dense woods in the world.

I’ve had this Ikon (the blackwood one) 6″ Cook’s Knife for over 6 years, and it’s my go-to knife for 70% of kitchen tasks. This knife is the like Classic Ikon 6″ Utility Knife above that I used for tomato, but has a bigger, curved belly, so that I can chop, dice and mince with a rocking motion, similar to a chef’s knife.

I love this knife because of the handle. The real wood so pretty, feels luxurious, warm and smooth in my hands. I cherish this knife!

There is a price difference between the Classic Ikon and Ikon.

  • Williams Sonoma Classic Ikon 7-Piece Block Set current price $379.97
  • Williams Sonoma Ikon 7-Piece Block Set current price $699.95

If $700 is within your budget, go for the Ikon Blackwood. Plus, the set includes a bigger knife block and stainless steel pull-apart shears. It does require hand-washing and immediate drying of the handles. Mineral oil is also included to condition the wood.

About Wüsthof

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