No two people will ever agree completely on everything, especially knife owners talking about the best knives ever made. It’s like trying to decide who is the greatest football or baseball player of all time. There are good arguments for many different choices.
To give you a starting point, we checked out different sources to find out their choices for the best knives ever made. We’ve separated them out below by category.
Best Hunting Knife Ever Made
Who better than Field and Stream to address the question of which hunting knife from history reigns supreme as the best ever made? They chose the 1899 Webster Marble Ideal Hunting Knife, which proved so popular that it remained in production until 1974. A well-preserved Ideal Hunting Knife may fetch up to $10,000 from collectors. It originally sold for $1.25.
Best Bowie Knife Ever Made
Other than having an original, knife enthusiasts know that Daniel Edward Henry made Bowie knives in the 1960s that set a high standard for grind, polish, fit and finish. The D.E. Henry knives have become even more legendary since Henry died in 1993.
Best Chef’s Knife Ever Made
This one isn’t historical, but current. Food & Wine magazine tested out all the available chef’s knives and decided one ranked higher than the others: the MAC MTH-80 Professional Series 8-inch Chef’s Knife with Dimples. If you’re looking for value, they recommend the Mercer Culinary Renaissance 8-Inch Forged Chef’s Knife. Getting one of these won’t necessarily improve your cooking, but at least you’ll have the best tools.
Best Knife That Hasn’t Changed
While some knife designs have remained fairly constant over the decades, few reach the longevity of the Leuku knife originally used by the Saami tribes of northern Europe. This fixed blade is seen as the perfect tool for outdoor work and survival. Its simple construct features a long, wide and strong blade that has remained largely the same for centuries. They typically come with sheath that covers the entire blade. The essentials haven’t changed in hundreds of years.
Best Military Knife Ever Made
If it’s not the best, it’s certainly one of the most famous. The Ka-Bar Marine Corps Fighting Knife, issued in 1943 during World War II, had a 7-inch blade like a Bowie knife, a leather handle and a steel cap. When people write about this knife, the word “effective” comes up a lot. Is there higher praise for a military knife (or any knife, really)?
Best First Knife Ever Made
The original Swiss Army knife had just four blades, but it’s the evolution of the knife over the years that has made it famous. Most now own a Victorinox Classic SD. Yes, it’s also the butt of jokes among some knife enthusiasts…until the day comes when they need one of its many, many tools. In families in the United States and around the world, the Swiss Army knife is a rite of passage for young boys and girls. It’s often the first knife people own, as well as the most useful.
These are six of the many “best knives ever made” choices, at least by the experts. Don’t expect everyone to agree. Part of the enjoyment of becoming interested in knives is having your own opinion about what makes a good knife – and what makes a knife the best ever made.