Recycled sawmill blades and whiskey barrels make the Origin Craft Utility Knife a step above

Origin Handcrafted strives to throw a knife like no other. In hopes this Kickstarter hits its mark, we’re putting its utility knife to the grindstone to see how it performs.

Let’s cut to the chase, because this is a limited time thing – the Origin Handcrafted Utility Knife is a beautiful kitchen tool. The brainchild of creators Marc Liss and Kayla Penelton, it’s the smaller companion to the large Santoku-style blade currently championed on the company’s Kickstarter.

We covered that duo in a news item some time ago, and now I had the chance to test one. Among the legends of the knife is the blade forged from ancient sawmill blades, some of which may have fashioned the Manitoba maple and oak whiskey barrels that make up the handle of the knife.

From now on, Origin Starter is set to end on June 30, 2022. The company is used to achieving its goals, and this one is nearing the finish line.

So if you want to get started on one of the most unique kitchen tools we’ve seen in a while, pick a link and get involved. And if you need a little convincing, check out the description and photos below.

In short: The Origin Handcrafted Utility Knife is a marvel of recycling, clever design and skillful execution. If you’re looking for a kitchen blade set with a unique combination of capability and soul, check out the company. Starter.

Original Handcrafted Utility Knife Review

(Photo/Josh Wussow)

The blade

Whether intentional or not, the paper Origin used to wrap the review sample provided an immediate opportunity to test the edges. And this utility came sharpso much so that I felt compelled to underline it in italics.

Origin Craft Utility Knife - Blade
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

But you don’t cook a meal by cutting paper. So, to celebrate her first night in my kitchen, I dove into a full enchilada prep.

The Origin’s 5.12-inch (13 cm) blade made it easy to work through onions, carrots, parsnips, and a whole host of peppers, both fresh and dried.

Original Handcrafted Utility Knife - Spine Comparison
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

As I worked, the knife also calmed the only concern I had out of the box: the width of his spine. As you can see above the utility knife is just as wide on the shoulders as my actual size WÜSTHOF professional chef’s knife.

A wide spine is great for strength, but it usually translates to less slip and more thrust when slicing. But at just over 1¼ inches tall (3.2cm), the Origin has more than overcome this problem.

And while the flat of the blade might not be wide enough to crush garlic cloves, that’s not really what the utility is designed for. It is a life-size work best preserved for the Santoku.

The handle

Origin Handcrafted Utility Knife - Handle
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

Although your eye may be drawn to blade specifications and details, a good handle is no less important to a knife’s overall performance in the kitchen. Fortunately, Origin has included a good one.

Measuring 5.5 inches long (14cm), its octagonal geometry fits quite naturally into the palm. The wood combo, according to Origin, is “vacuum stabilized with resin, with the maple’s resin dyed for contrast. The resulting handle is durable, comfortable, and environmentally friendly.

And after a few slicing sessions, I tend to agree. The shape flares out to a flattened end, providing more than enough room for hands large and small.

Design, Durability

Origin Craft Utility Knife - logo
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

Let’s briefly talk about the logo. As attractive as it is, I noticed that water tended to pool in its letters. I’m also wondering about the various dips and holes in the top of the blade.

In practice, these seemed to prevent food from sticking while you cut. But they also provide additional nooks and crannies for moisture. When you clean your Origin, I would pay special attention to drying out those stains. It is high carbon steel, after all.

Origin craft utility knife - design and patina
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

And speaking of which, this knife is going to skate. Almost immediately, in fact, when faced with acidic foods like onions, garlic and limes. But that’s part of the charm, isn’t it? If you’re paying for a knife made from materials that have already lived a brave life, a few extra marks only add to the charm.

Origin’s stated mission is to create tools that last. And after a week in his company, I see no reason why (if properly maintained) this knife should be anything but durable.

Price and conclusion

As mentioned, Origin is based in Canada, so there is some currency conversion to do. Pledges start at around US$32, but this tier will only get you a t-shirt. The utility knife can be purchased for a commitment of $210, and the larger Santoku requires a kick of at least $229.

Or bundle the two for slots around $396.

These prices vary a little depending on the time of your commitment. And with many amazing kitchen knives available for under $200, that might seem a bit steep at first glance. But honestly, I can see the appeal.

Origin craft utility knife next to enchiladas
(Photo/Josh Wussow)

Why? Because beyond the abilities listed above, the Utility Knife (and its big brother, I guess) offer more than a path to supper. Beyond its proven design, the materials and craftsmanship on display here are truly next-level.

Origin’s drive—its passion for reclaiming bits of its heritage and bringing it to our kitchens—is almost as delicious as a full plate of enchiladas.

Learn more about campaign newsor head to Original Kickstarter for a chance to get in on the action.

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