They say that with the advent of cutlery, man became a rational being. Unless in China and Japan people still eat with chopsticks.
Gradually, cutlery has evolved from a luxury item to something common and everyday. They are made of wood, plastic, silver, cupronickel, stainless steel, aluminum.
It is quite logical to assume that the most noble and wealthy representatives of our society prefer to use elite cutlery. What count or prince would agree to eat delicious soup with a wooden spoon? The most expensive and famous cutlery will be discussed in our article.
Robbe & Berking. The famous German manufacturer appeared in 1874. Since then, all over the world it is customary to consider silver tableware and cutlery from this manufacture as a kind of ideal, as real objects of art. Over the years, the craftsmen have been able to maintain the highest quality standards, without wasting themselves on design experiments in favor of traditional rigor. The founders of the company created the motto: "Others can do it cheaper, but no one can do it better than us", which is still relevant today. Robbe & Berking's image is high thanks to the high level of quality and design. Cutlery from this manufactory is already beginning to be exhibited in museums as exhibits of modern art of silver processing. The company's products are created not just for the sake of beauty - they are used by the world's leading hotels and restaurants. So, silver from "Robbe & Berking" is in the palace of the King of Jordan, in the official guest residences of the Kremlin. And in the Berlin Federal Chancellery, receptions are served with devices from this manufacturer. When creating his collection, the manufacturer uses exclusively high quality silver. Every year, about 20 tons of this metal is required to make cutlery. All items are made of the highest 925 sterling silver. No other silver piece has such a high international reputation. Even simply silver-plated items are produced with a more valuable 150 g coating, in contrast to the traditional 90 g. This is evidenced by a special stamp on the back of the item, mammoth.
Christofle. This French manufacturer is also highly regarded in the cutlery world. For 170 years of work on the market, the company has already developed its own philosophy: "The art of living, the art of receiving guests, the art of giving gifts." And the company began with the fact that Charles Christofl acquired a patent for metal silvering using the electroplating method. So for the French the word "christophle" became synonymous with "silver plating". Products of this brand are always covered with 925 sterling silver. A special patented alloy is used for the manufacture of Christofle cutlery. It is based on three metals: zinc, nickel and copper. The uniqueness of the alloy is that there is an unusually large amount of zinc in it - about 20%. The cutlery, even not yet covered with silver, already looks like this. There are also collections with steel appliances. They are much more affordable, but they look no less beautiful. Steel appliances are the same white and similar to silver ones. In total, the manufacturer has about seven such collections. Christofle also pays attention to the shape of the hand, having developed about 20 different varieties of it. The manufacturer prefers to preserve the traditions of serving, its cutlery repeats those that it produced back in the 19th century. For example, there is even a lamb leg clip in the assortment, which is not particularly in demand in our time. Silver appliances from these Frenchmen are very practical, they can even be washed in the dishwasher. Only in this case, you can not use abrasives, since soft silver is easily scratched. Collections are supplied with special antioxidant bags for storing devices. This will allow them to avoid the inevitable darkening for such material. Produces Christofle and its own line of silver care. The company recommends that you periodically wipe your products so that they do not darken. It is better to wash table silver really in a special machine, which will evenly process the product with water.
Ercuis. Cutlery from this manufacturer is generally popular in France in aristocratic families, where they are passed down from generation to generation. This is how the tradition is maintained with the help of these famous appliances. The manufacturer produces sets, both made of pure silver and simply silver-plated. It is based on a special alloy of copper, nickel and zinc, which is coated with silver on top. Although this method is considered more expensive, it provides better reliability. And improved wear resistance of problem areas is achieved by thickening the silver layer. The tines of the forks are prone to this problem. And silver or gilding is applied using electroplating - an electric current is passed through the solution. The layer of silver-plated coating here is 63 microns, which corresponds to 150 g of 95 silver. For comparison, for the same "Christofle" this figure is 80 g. There is also a collection made of pure 925 sterling silver in the manufacturer's assortment. And some devices combine silver with glass, which gives them a peculiar charm. The price of products from "Ercuis" is quite high. This is based on the high quality of products, stylish and varied designs, richness of series (up to 40 items). Like the previous manufacturer, Ercuis also offers its own products for the care of silver items.
Barenthal. And again the French are among the leaders. The first factory of this company opened in the mid-1950s in the small town of Barenthal. His name is easily the basis of a new brand. The symbol of the town is the bear, which appeared in the company logo. It seems to guarantee the reliability and unconditional quality of the brand's products. In France itself, Barenthal has managed to achieve the status of the company's second largest cutlery production. She produces about two million items every year. The main material for them is steel 18/10, ARNOR Z7 CN. The thickness of the objects is 3 millimeters. The manufacturer allows washing their dishes in typewriters. Some items also have a silver plated finish. What distinguishes the products of this company from all others is really beautiful design. Barenthal resorts to polishes that are fashionable today, and for this they use manual work. This affects the cost of products, but the quality is the highest. Series with partial satin finish can be supplied with or without gilding. The company also produces unique series that are specially stylized to resemble antique silver items. For this, some areas are treated with acid, from this they darken. This achieves the effect of an antique silver product, but in terms of properties it is stainless steel, which is easy to clean. An example is the Louis XV series. The cuttings of stainless steel cutlery are stylized as antique silver. Barenthal's series are mostly large, containing up to 36 items.
WMF. The famous German cutlery maker was founded in 1880. A significant impetus for its development was the acquisition of exclusive rights to use special V2A steel. It was created by Krupp specifically for the production of tableware. The material is based on chrome and nickel 18/10 with additives to meet the highest requirements. It has been patented under the brand name "Croman". Today, the WMF brand boasts more than twenty cutlery designs. The catalog is divided into thematic sections. You can pick up devices for a romantic meeting, with a classic design. Economy class appliances will help you better match modern style with a bias towards minimalism. The Germans generally offer several inexpensive series. Their complete line consists of 43 items, to which additional items for serving are also attached. You can find devices for serving meat or salad, tongs. The silver-plated series has 60 and 90 grams of silver applied. When applied, a thicker layer traditionally falls on the areas of maximum abrasion. These are the parts that touch the table and utensils, for which the device is held in the hands of a person. It is interesting that enterprising Germans not only produce traditional devices, but also come up with new ones. The happy spoon, for example, is a miniature ladle that is great for tastings or buffets. It is these little things, according to WMF, that determine the class of the brand. The company does not forget about caring for its devices, releasing a series of its own products.
Arthur Price of England. In 1902, this English company was born, which immediately began to produce cutlery of the highest class. For their manufacture, the famous Sheffield steel is used, which has already become a legend for its strength and durability. If we talk about the steel character, then the British in this aspect mention the Sheffield material. The company was so successful and significant for England that it received two awards - in 1977 from Queen Elizabeth II, and in 1988 - from the Prince of Wales. But during the Second World War, the company found itself on the verge of bankruptcy - it had to redesign and start producing parts for bombs. Today the English manufacturer offers high quality table setting devices. These are a variety of sugar and ice tongs, cake scoops, serving knives for fish and meat, large spoons for sauces, serving spoons for caviar and sugar, napkin rings, buckets with ice tongs, ashtrays, trays, vases and spice sets ...
Sambonet. The famous Italian manufacturer has been on the market since the 18th century. It was then that the nobleman Giuseppe Sambone, master of gold and silver, received an order to restore the sacred objects of the Cathedral of Vercelli. Upon completion of that work, the Italian received the title of Master of Fine Arts, and the company he founded received his name. Since 1856, she began to produce cutlery made of stainless steel, as well as a 12 percent silver-nickel alloy. In 1932, the company built the country's first silver cutlery factory. In 1947, the company patented the Silverplating technology, becoming a manufacturer of luxury cookware. In 1956, the brand gained worldwide fame after winning a tender for the supply of tableware for the Hilton Hotel. And the Hollware collection has become part of the exposition of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The Sambonet company is distinguished by high quality metal processing, unique design and affordable price. It is no coincidence that Italian cutlery is chosen by royal houses, fashionable hotels, restaurants, and ordinary families.
Oneida. It is a true corporation that owns several cutlery brands around the world. In America it is Oneida, and in Italy it is Sant'Andrea. Devices of this brand, which appeared in 1880, are distinguished by a wide variety and high quality. And if Oneida is an affordable average level, then Sant'Andrea is already a luxury quality. Cutlery from this manufacturer is distinguished by exquisite design and variety of series. High quality stainless steel is used for manufacturing. Sant'Andrea's most famous collections are named after the great composers: Mozart, Wagner and Strauss. On request, these series can be silver-coated. Oneida has one of the most interesting series of Metro. The cutlery in it is made in a materialistic style, which is great for both European and mixed cuisine. They are distinguished by heavy, straight and narrow handles with a matte finish.
Mikasa. This company is one of the world leaders in the production of cutlery, as well as tableware made of ceramics, crystal, porcelain. For more than half a century, Mikasa has been associated with quality and design. It is no coincidence that the company not only uses the most advanced production technologies, but also collaborates with renowned designers in the development of its products. Mikasa stands out for its stylistic variety, which allows each person to find exactly "their" set.
The Arc Collection. As you can see, many brands were able to become famous and successful, producing high-quality, but at the same time inexpensive dishes. Annual production volumes are measured in millions of pieces. But in the case of Arc Collection, it's worth talking about the artistic value of such cutlery. They are, without exaggeration, real masterpieces of art. Not just designers worked on this series, but the jewelers of the FooFitch company. The unusual collection includes traditional English style knife forks and Japanese chopsticks. Dinner sets shine not only due to silver - a traditional material for expensive dishes. In this collection, each piece is encrusted with diamonds. For example, each of the two sticks has nine precious stones, the same number was found on spoons with forks. All cutlery is inlaid with the FooFitch logo. I must say that such a set is not at all a museum rarity or an exhibition specimen. In London boutiques and shops, it already sells for £ 5,500.
Guy Degrenne. For Europe, cutlery from this manufacturer has long been considered "number one". The fact is that it was Guy Degrenne who was the first to produce such stainless steel cookware. The company has built the largest cutlery plant on the continent; in total, its catalog contains more than 10 thousand product names, of which cutlery alone is about fifty different series. There is a whole restaurant collection here, which differentiates products depending on the level of the establishment. In general, cutlery is made predominantly of 18/10 steel, which gives it a shine and extra protection. Such products can be washed in professional machines, and they do not require special storage rules. High quality is confirmed by the brand mark, which is always present on every product. The Guy Degrenne brand has also shown itself to be a leader in the production of silver and even gold jewelry. The assortment of the same series varies from palace to ultra-fashionable, made in high-tech style.
Broggi. This manufacturer is considered one of the oldest, having been producing cutlery for almost two centuries. It all began in 1818 in Milan, when Gaetano Broggi opened a small factory for the production of silver cutlery and tableware. In 1840, Broggi received the status of an official supplier of tableware to the court of the King of Italy, and then other crowned families of Europe became customers. Today the company operates primarily on the Italian market, being the only distributor of such a famous brand as Villeroy & Boch there. Italians are a regular supplier for numerous hotels, embassies, coffee chains. And for the production of instruments, the same classic steel with 18 percent chromium and 10 percent nickel is used.Thanks to chromium, the cookware gains resistance to corrosion, strength and shine, while nickel protects against aggressive food acids. There are also some products in the assortment of the manufacturer, additionally coated with silver. This adds sophistication to the already high-quality devices.
Robert Welch. Recently, the William Welch mark has also appeared on cutlery from this manufacturer. The products are distinguished by unique shapes, ergonomics and high quality. Used for manufacturing classic steel 18/10. But the company achieves a variety of series due to various polishing - matte and mirror. The cutlery itself from Robert Welch is a true work of art. For example, the Deta series is an example of elegance. Both forks and spoons in it are curved in a wave. Knives not only have a streamlined shape, but also their blade is curved. It is worth noting the Vista series with an unusual design, where each item is absolutely non-standard.