I've tried all kinds of paring knives over the years, and what I've learned is this. Give me a blade that is sharp and holds an edge for a long time, thick enough to be sturdy and thin enough to maneuver, short enough for fine work and long enough to be versatile. And, despite what some manufacturers and "experts" might say, a full-tang blade forged from a single piece of steel is a must for me. If you've ever had a paring knife break in two in your hand, as I have, you know what I mean.
As important as the blade is, almost more so is the handle. It doesn't matter how perfect the blade is if the handle doesn't feel right in your hand. I've had handles that were too long, too short, too narrow, too wide. One that was specifically designed for comfort is so bulky it's impossible to use. Another handle is so thin and narrow, every time I use it my fingernails dig into my palm.
I had been on the hunt for a better paring knife, when the Wusthof Classic 3.5-Inch Paring Knife 4066/9cm was sent to me for review. Wusthof has a range of blade sizes, and this one is just right for me--large enough for any task, but not so large as to be hard to handle. And I love the way the Wusthof Classic handle feels in my hand.
This paring knife is extremely versatile, perfect for: peeling potatoes and apples, coring tomatoes, hulling and slicing strawberries, peeling and dicing shallots and garlic, dicing unpeeled avocado halves, deveining and butterflying shrimp, and making decorative garnishes (citrus crowns, fluted mushroom caps, tomato roses, radish flowers, strawberry fans).
Note: See my chef's knife review, bread knife review and 10 Favorite Kitchen Gadgets post for more gift ideas.
One winner will receive a Wusthof Classic 3.5-Inch Paring Knife 4066/9cm from Wusthof. All US residents who leave a comment about knives (one entry per person - and please include your email address in the body of your comment) on this post before 11:59 pm Eastern time Wednesday November 21 will be put into a random drawing. Winner will be announced here in the comments before noon Eastern time on Thursday November 22. If I don't hear back from the winner of the random drawing by 11:59 am Eastern time Sunday November 25, another drawing will be held and a new winner selected from the original entrants (those who commented before the giveaway deadline).
Buy It Now This knife is available online at Amazon.