Mercer Knives vs Wusthof: Which is the Best Chef’s Knife?

Comparing Mercer vs Wusthof knives is like differentiating between apples and oranges.

It is almost impossible to say which the best is. Because both have a few unique and extraordinary features. By the way, I am talking about comparing Mercer knives vs Wusthof knives.

Both names are among the top German chef knives brands with a wide range of cutlery products. If I go for every great knife series, this review will become another “Odyssey.” Therefore, I have picked the most famous products from each of these prominent chef knife brand names.

Culinary from Mercer and Classic Ikon from Wusthof is the best kitchen utility knife from every aspect. There will hardly be any knife reviews that won’t include these two best knives on the market.

So, let’s dig in to find out which one is the best and why.

Mercer Knives vs Wusthof: Which is the Best German Knife Brand?

It is never easy to compare between the bests. The same goes for the Mercer knives vs Wusthof knives duel. I have picked the best product from both knife makers to compare their unique qualities and features

Mercer Culinary Genesis Chef Knife Review

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Mercer Culinary started forging knives in the last three decades. Despite this short-term in the market, Mercer made a solid impression among the cooking enthusiasts. High carbon German steel, professional forging process, comfortable handle, affordable price, and lightweight make it one of the most popular knives.

The blade is forged from high carbon CrMoV15 steel. It is resistant to rust, stain, discoloration, and corrosion. Additives like Chromium enhanced the shine and sharpness of the blade. The taper-ground edge of the soft blade makes it easy to honing and sharpening. Besides, the edge enhances the stability and performance.

Mercer Culinary set

Full Tang and full bolsters are there for a better balance between the blades and handle. It will make any chopping, cutting, dicing, or mincing easy. Ergonomic Santoprene handle offers a firm grip for those prep jobs. Cleaning the handle is also easier for this high-quality blend of plastic and rubber material.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Ergonomic handle
  • Lightweight
  • Full tang for a better balance
  • Rust and stain-resistant high carbon steel blade

Cons

  • Soft blade
  • Requires frequent sharpening

Wusthof Classic Ikon Chef Knife Review

A unique-shaped sleek handle with double bolsters makes this iconic chef knife from Wusthof. Authentic German forging technology, high carbon steel, ergonomic handle, and higher sharpness are some of the key features of the Classic Ikon. A superior kitchen tool from Germany.

The moderately hard stainless steel blade is forged in Solingen, the city of blades in Germany. Each precision edge blade has the tradition and craftsmanship of nearly 200 years. The entire process using PreciisonEdge Technology makes the knife 20% sharper than any German knife. Moreover, it comes with double edge retention capacity.

Wusthof Classic

Full tang and slim bolsters add balance to the performance for better prep jobs. Besides, triple-rivets on the Polyoxymethylene (POM) handle of this heavy-duty knife will give you a firm and slip-resistant grip. Professional chefs around the world consider this as one of the best utility knives for cooking.

Pros

  • Forged from high-carbon German steel
  • PrecisionEdge technology
  • Double bolster full tang
  • Slip-resistant handle
  • 20% sharper than any German chef knives
  • High edge retention

Cons

  • Heavyweight
  • Expensive

Comparing Factors to Choose Best German Knives

As I said in the beginning, a comparison between Mercer knives vs Wusthof will be a daunting task for anyone. However, I have found some distinct features in Wusthof and Mercer knives reviews. These features are different in both knives that make them more unique and effective.

Blade Materials

Both knives are made with typical German stainless steel that contains 0.5 to 1.5% carbon. Other additives like Vanadium, Chromium, and Nickel are also common but not essential.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

Mercer Culinary Genesis blade contains additives like Chromium, Molybdenum, and Vanadium. These elements offer extra shine, flexibility, and endurance to the blade. You will see an extra shine over the razor-sharp edge of the Mercer knife. It’s because of Nickel and Chromium.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

Vanadium strengthens the connections between carbon and iron of the stainless steel and makes the blade flexible. Mercer blades are tough for any kind of rough handling and use. You can separate even the tiny pieces of meat from the most difficult corner of the bones with it.

Wusthof Classic Ikon

Except for the additives, the Wusthof Classic knife is also made with German stainless steel. The amount of carbon is a little higher than the Mercer’s blade. However, if you compare Mac vs Wusthof, there won’t be any significant differences in the steel composition.

Lack of shining elements may affect the glaze of the blade, but it won’t affect the sharpness. On the contrary, high carbon content makes the Wusthof forged blade much more robust than Mercer’s edge. Yes, the Wusthof knives are not as flexible as the Culinary Genesis, but they can handle any tough cutting job.

5 Best Wusthof Knives

Handle

You will see the first visible difference between these two kitchen knives in the handle. The handle of the Wusthof knife is its signature feature, whereas it’s a regular feature for the Mercer.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

The single rivet handle of Culinary Genesis is made with Santoprene. This high-grade polymer offers an excellent grip for the fingers and prevents any slippage even with wet hands.

The polymer can withstand cold and hot temperatures and also kitchen oils and greases. No matter how much temperature change or oily stain it endures, the Santoprene is hard to break down.

Full bolster, full tang, and single rivet at the end make the handle durable and ready for any action. The bolster works as a counterweight to balance between the blades and handle.

Wusthof Classic Ikon

The Polyoxymethylene (POM) handle of the Wusthof Ikon knife is much more durable than the Mercer Genesis. If you ask me if the handle of mercer knives any good than Wusthof? I would suggest waiting until the end of this review.

Triple rivet design firmly connects the POM handle panels with the full tang. Double bolster keeps those panels in place for any tough cutting or chopping job. You will hardly see any discoloration or fading on the POM handle. All the credit goes to the tighter molecular structures of the polymer.

The front bolsters may be short, but it can hold all the pressure on the handle. It also allows you to use and sharpen the entire length of the blade.

Manufacturing Process

You will find a significant difference in the manufacturing process between Mercer Culinary vs Victorinox. However, in the case of Mercer knives vs Wusthof, the difference is in the post-production techniques.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

You already know from the mercer chef knife review that this blade is made through traditional forging. The German’s been master knife makers for the last two thousand years. And over the previous two centuries, the process is at its ace.

Mercer Genesis is forged from a single piece of high-carbon German steel through intense labor and intricate craftsmanship. Each blade is forged, sharpened, and polished by hand. For the last three decades, Mercer Culinary is following this labor intense but traditional way of knife making.

Wusthof Classic Ikon

Wusthof knives are made in Solingen or the City of Blades. So, no wonder, each blade of Classic Ikon will have the tradition and skills acquired through the last two thousand years.

High-carbon blades of Classic Ikon are manufactured through manual forging processes. The difference comes when the blades go through post forging processes. A computerized and robot-controlled process called PrecisionEdge Technology (PEtec) sharpens and polishes the edges.

This process ensures longer edge retention and more sharpness than any other German knives. Moreover, you will get an optimum and even-cutting edge throughout the entire length of the border.

5 Best Mercer Knives

Weight

According to the Wusthof and Mercer chef knives review, the knives do not have any significant difference in weight. However, it’s the shape and made of the blade that makes them feel differently while in use.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

Mercer Genesis 8-inches chef knife weighs around 9.2-oz. Manually forged blades and Santoprene handles put all the weight of this knife. However, due to thick and full bolster, this knife seems heavier to a few users.

You will feel a perfect balance while gripping on the handle. A flexible blade will counter any tough angle and make you feel like working with a lightweight knife. Taper ground edge enhances the balance as well as the performance.

All these ergonomic and physical features boiled up into the lightweight feel of the knife despite the standard weight range.

Wusthof Classic Ikon

Weight-wise, Wusthof Ikon has only a fraction difference from the Genesis of Mercer. Classic Ikon from the house of Wusthof is 8.96-oz. Most of us will not even realize the difference; however, the Ikon feels more heavyweight than the Genesis knife.

In comparison to Wusthof, Victorinox Fibrox is much lighter, and you will obviously feel it. But why do these two weight identical knives will have the difference in feel? Well, the answer lies in his made and outlook. Full tang, triple-rivet Polyoxymethylene handle gives an expression of heavier weight for the Ikon.

Moreover, the partial bolster is much thicker and denser than a full bolster. Thus, it also contributes to the weighty feel.

Sharpness and Bevel Angle

Sharpness is the core of any knife design. There are many ways manufacturers sharpen and add the edge on the blade. Some of the knives come with a tapered blade, while others have beveled edges. Both processes have some unique advantages and, of course, disadvantages.

Mercer Culinary Genesis

Genesis knife has a taper-ground edge. That means the blade started to taper from the thick spine and get thinned at the end. It is a solid edging process that goes perfectly with softer steel. The Genesis blade is softer than the Ikon due to lower carbon content and several additives.

There is no beveled side on the tip of the edge. It is both an advantage and also a disadvantage. Lack of beveled edge means sharpening, and honing is easier. However, the lack of it also makes the taper-ground edge lose its sharpness quickly.

Moreover, the beveled edge is more favorable for smooth and flawless cutting and slicing.

Wusthof Classic Ikon

Classic Ikon from Wusthof has a 15-degree angle or bevel on either side of the edge. It means the end of the blade has a 30-degree angle that works as the cutting element.

Japanese or Asian knives come with a single side bevel, whereas typical European knives have a double bevel. As a high-end German knife, Ikon comes with a double-beveled edge. Obviously, the beveled edge offers sheer sharpness and a smoother cut than any taper-ground edge knife.

However, the thinner the edge, the more vulnerable it is to any accidental cut. Any move over the hard surface like bone or metal may damage the edge for good.

Furthermore, sharpening the edges is time-consuming. You have to maintain the exact (or close to the exact) angle that matches the bevel angle. Otherwise, the sharpening will have no effect.

When Should You Choose Mercer Culinary Genesis?

If you are a newbie in this pond, then with this basic angling you can have a blast in your kitchen. The kitchen is the most precious place for a chef, and here we are choosing the best knives to enhance the beauty of the kitchen.

For Mid-level Professionals or Home Chef

If I consider the material, feature, and price point, the Genesis from Mercer Culinary is a perfect choice for beginner and mid-level cooking professionals or home-chef.

The knife is easy to use and requires the least maintenance. Besides, it can handle any rough uses and accidental drops than the more hardened blade.

For a Kitchen with Low Workload

This knife required frequent sharpening, which is not convenient for a professional kitchen. However, in a home kitchen or a small-scale business, the workload is relatively low, and you have the time to sharpen the edges.

Storing and cleaning the knife is easy. You can put it in the dishwasher; however, I would not recommend it.

For a Restricted Budget

Mercer Culinary knife is highly affordable than any German chef knife. When you are setting up a kitchen or moving to a new home, this is the perfect budget-friendly choice.

You will get all the great features of superior knife brands like Wusthof, Zwilling JA Henckels, or Mac Knife at a one-third price. How great is that? This may not be as cheap as Fibrox handled Victorinox, but this stamped knife is no match with the forged blade of Genesis.

When Should You Choose Wusthof Classic Ikon?

Precision edge blade, solid triple-rivet handle, and superior balance are the reason the Classic Ikon is the most popular among professional chefs around the world. The hardened steel is suitable to tackle the toughest prop jobs in any kitchen.

For Professional Chef

In any comparison between Mercer knives vs Wusthof, pro-level chefs prefer the former.

It is not unusual to use this knife at home. But the delicate beveled edge needs a skilled hand to use it while keeping the sharpness intact. Moreover, sharpening the edge is also a mastery that requires time. Thus, it matches more with professional chefs rather than any newbies or home cooks.

For Busy Kitchen

A busy and bustling kitchen is almost like a nightmare for any soft-hearted person. It is full of pressure, tension, and fast-paced work. There is no time to take care of the tools frequently. The hard blade of the Classic Ikon is perfect for such a crazily running kitchen.

You do not have to sharpen the blade frequently like the Genesis. It will save a lot of prep time in the kitchen. A busy kitchen means good business, and to run such a business, you won’t hesitate to make a good investment in tools like knives.

Thus, the higher price tag goes along with the busy kitchen of a booming business.

FAQ of Mercer Knives vs Wusthof

This FAQ section will come in very handy when you are quite confused with some important question in your mind. We gave this answer by complete research from the professionals. What are you waiting for? let’s find out some basic aspects from this FAQ section.

Is Mercer a Good Knife Brand?

Yes, it is. For the last three decades, Mercer Culinary is meeting the expectation of both professional chefs and home cooks with utmost dedication.
Intricate manual forging, hand sharpening and polishing, and machine molded handle making makes every Mercer knife a piece of excellence. No matter if you are picking the pace in a culinary endeavor or just started a career in a professional kitchen, this brand will be your best companion at the starting line.
Not only with a knife, but Mercer Culinary will also help your journey with all the other kitchen tools like mercer cutlery, plating, and sharpening gadgets. They also manufacture kitchen storage, apparel, and other kitchen tools.
The second generation of the Mercer family that runs the business uphold the knife making traditions of thousand years while embracing state-of-the-art technologies.

What are the Top Knives used by Professional Chefs?

World-renowned chefs use both German and Japanese knives for their kitchen. Top-ranked Japanese brands like Mac, Global, Shun, and Toijoro are well-known for the heavier and pure carbon stainless steel blades.
Knife brands like Wusthof, Victorinox, and J.A. Henckels are the leading among the European makers. In every corner in the world, if you sneak into the professional kitchens, there is a good chance you will see a knife set from any of these brands. If not, at least a paring knife of any of these brands.

Is Wusthof better than Henckels?

Just like the comparison between the Mercer knives vs Wusthof, it is not easy to compare Henckels and Wusthof. However, these two brands have some difference in the blade features.
The bevel angle is narrower in Wusthof than Henckels knives. The Wusthof blade is a bit harder than the Henckels that can retain the sharpness longer. However, it makes Henckels knives more flexible.
Half or partial bolster in both the brands are responsible for a balanced motion of the blade. Thus, performance-wise both of them are equally splendid. However, you may have to be more careful while sharpening the Wusthof knives.

What would be the Best Brand of a Kitchen Knife?

You will find several European and Japanese brands that manufacture top-quality knives. All of them produce a few kitchen knives that are the best with one or two unique features.
Personal communication with professional chefs and extensive review ended up with the following names as the best knife brand in the world
Wusthof
Mercer Culinary
J. A. Henckels
Victorinox
Mac
Global
Dalstrong
Bob Kramer
Miyabi

What are the Best German Knives?

Several German knife brands make a solid impression on the user’s mind. However, only a few make it ever-lasting.
Wusthof and Mercer Culinary are the best among the German and European brands. They manufacture a wide range of cutlery that can turn any kitchen into a coordinated orchestra.
However, the Genesis 8-inches Chef knife from Mercer and Classic Ikon 8-inches Chef Knife from the house of Wusthof is the best German knives in any aspect.

Final Thoughts

No matter which one you pick, one thing I can assure you that you will get the best culinary experience in your kitchen. However, it will be better to choose the Mercer Culinary Genesis when you are starting your cooking endeavor with a limited budget.

Contrarily, Wusthof Classic Ikon will be the best choice if you are already a star in the culinary industry or run a super busy kitchen. This knife will cost a fortune for you but will surely bring much more in return.

There is no point in waiting. These two are the prince charming that will wake up the master-chef inside you with a precise cut. A cut that will untie your talent and skill to the world.

So let’s get them and be a culinary crackerjack.

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