Bob Kramer Carbon Steel
Certified as a Master Bladesmith by the American Bladesmith Society, Bob Kramer is the only Master Bladesmith in the world specializing in kitchen cutlery. Cooks Illustrated once wrote: “The Kramer knife outperformed every knife we’ve ever rated.” Put simply -- Kramer is King of the Kitchen Knife.
AN OBSESSIVE DEDICATION TO EXCELLENCE
Bob Kramer has spent nearly two decades reducing the craft of knife making to its essence, creating his original artisan knives on his own from start to finish in his small studio. There he forges the best raw materials and a relentless pursuit of perfection into some of the most beautiful and sought-after cutlery in the culinary world.
NEVER BEFORE AVAILABLE
Now—for the first time ever—home chefs can experience the same unrivaled performance of a Bob Kramer original. Featuring the precise quality of carbon steel that Bob chooses for his custom artisan knives, these knives are built for remarkable strength and unmatched edge retention. The addition of the brass bolsters and handsome African blackwood handles shows that no detail has been overlooked.
THE PROS KNOW
Professional chefs know how important using the right knife is and often wait years to get their hands on one of Bob’s legendary handcrafted creations. For this collection, Sur La Table worked with the master himself and renowned German knife maker Zwilling J.A. Henckels to create an exquisite line of artisan knives that perfectly replicates the originals Kramer crafts in his own studio.
WHAT IS CARBON STEEL?
The first metal formulated to hold the razor-sharp, consistent edge required by the modern culinary arts, carbon steel has a rich 3,000-year heritage and is still a favorite of enthusiasts and professional for its perfect performance, amazing edge retention and ease of sharpening. 52100 carbon steel has an extremely fine grain structure, allowing for maximum sharpness.
HANDCRAFTED IN SEKI CITY, JAPAN
Each knife is handcrafted to precise specifications in “The City of Blades,” the Japanese knife capital of Seki City. Its reputation as the premier sword-making center began in the 13th century during the war-torn Kamakura Era. Master swordsmith Motoshige escaped the fighting and moved to Seki City to be near the natural resources necessary to pursue his art.
UNIQUE AFRICAN BLACKWOOD HANDLE
Supremely comfortable in the hand, the natural African blackwood handle is gently rounded to mirror the curve of the palm. Triple-riveted for strength and seamlessly joined to the brass bolster, the signature decorative center pins are handcrafted by Bob himself.
KRAMER’S EXACTING SPECIFICATIONS
Each blade is formulated from a type of straight carbon steel called 52100—the exact type used by Bob in his own shop—and heat-treated to a hardness of 61 Rockwell. That means this knife has the ability to take an extremely sharp edge, to hold that edge under all sorts of use and abuse, and remain easy to sharpen. The full tang of the blade is tapered to Bob’s precise specifications, and the blade is sharpened to 15° on each side of the 50/50 edge with the traditional three-step hand-honed edge.
Over time the blade will develop the beautiful blue-gray patina prized by professional chefs as the signature of a favorite knife. This heirloom-quality knife is easy to care for—just keep it clean and dry for a lifetime of unparalleled performance.
- Experience the unrivaled performance and minimal maintenance of a Bob Kramer original, available for the first time ever to home enthusiasts
- Professionals wait years for a Kramer original
- We worked with the master himself and renowned German knife maker Zwilling J.A. Henckels for this exquisite line of artisan knives
- Made by expert artisans in Seki City, Japan, in a workshop specially constructed for this unique collection
- Precise straight carbon-steel formulation called 52100 for remarkable strength and unmatched edge retention
- Blade is sharpened to 15° on each side of the 50/50 edge with the traditional three-step hand-honed edge
- The wide blade shape allows for maximum knuckle clearance
- Heat-treated to a hardness of 61 Rockwell, so it comes sharp, stays sharp and is easy to maintain
- The full tang of the blade is tapered to Bob’s precise specifications
- Triple-riveted for strength and control
- Signature brass decorative center pin is handcrafted by Bob himself
- Carbon steel is the first metal formulated to hold the razor-sharp, consistent edge required by the modern chefs
- Comfortable African blackwood handle mirrors the shape of your palm
- Stunning brass bolster
- The only Master Bladesmith in the world specializing in kitchen cutlery
- Bob Kramer creates some of the most sought-after cutlery in the world
- Designed according to Bob’s almost two decades of experience
- Seki City has been the Japanese knife-making capital since the 13th century
- Use for years, then hand down as an heirloom piece
Zwilling J.A. Henckels
Known today as the “City of Blades,” Solingen, Germany has been home to master swordsmiths and knifemakers of legendary skill since the medieval times. In 1731, Peter Henckels registered the first version of the twin figure symbol for Henckels knives here. Since then, Zwilling J.A. Henckels has been committed to manufacturing knives of the highest quality. With a long list of firsts—including the first stainless steel blade and the first santoku on the American market—Zwilling J.A. Henckels continues to be a true innovator in the world of cutlery.
In 2010, Zwilling J.A. Henckels formed a partnership with Sur La Table and Master Bladesmith Bob Kramer. The King of the Kitchen Knife, Kramer has been pursuing perfection and forging some of the most sought after cutlery for almost 20 years. Together, they traveled to Japan to find a suitable manufacturer with the right equipment and the best facility for making knives according to the highest standardsbut never found one. So, to ensure the quality and consistency of Bob’s brand, Zwilling built a brand new factory in Solingen’s sister city in Japan, Seki City, specifically to manufacture the Kramer Carbon Steel knives. This remains the only place where these knives are forged and handcrafted. Thanks to this landmark partnership, now home chefs can enjoy the amazing performance of a Kramer custom original at just a fraction of the cost.
Below, Bob Kramer explains how he came up with his own signature knife pin.
“Many moons ago when I decided to put a mosaic pin on my knives I wanted something symbolic and powerful. The two basic elements of the pin are the concepts of 'three' and circles. The number three is regarded as a magic number in many cultures and, strangely enough, it also plays a big role in my heat treatment. Three shows up as the nuclear family (mother, father, baby), the tripod (the simplest stable platform), and for me the body, mind and spirit connection.
The circle is also a powerful symbol representing the sun, the birth-life-death cycle, the moon, and of course the wheel. In the early 1900s, Nicholas Roerich, an artist and humanitarian, decided to use this symbol as a flag for peace and culture.
I like the idea that the knives I make are used daily to make food for people, nourishment for friends and family, to establish connection. I like to think that the energy I put into the knife, and the symbol in the pin, will inspire the user in some way—and that feeling transfers to the food. Food with love, you know it tastes better.”