Most kitchen knife brands are focused on either mass-producing cheap knives or investing more time in forging expensive knives. Home cooks looking for a great knife are left in a difficult spot.
Mercer Culinary is one brand that can be considered middle-ground. They offer high-quality, forged knives at affordable prices that can be used by all budgets.
This article will explain which Mercer’s knife series works best for each type of cooking. You can find all that in my mercer knives review. I hope you find a lot of information from reading this review.
What Are Mercer Knives?
Mercer is a leading manufacturer of quality knives for over 30 years. Nearly 90% of North American culinary schools use their cutlery. Their products are also available in commercial kitchens, and recently on the residential market. Mercer knives have a reputation for being dependable and durable.
The Mercer knives are built as high-quality chef knives with triple rivets, forging steel, and single-piece construction. All knives need to be sharpened from time to time using steel. They are available in many materials but they are all NSF certified and easy to grasp.
Mercer Culinary: The Knives
Mercer Culinary offers a variety of knives. Some are professional-grade, while others are very affordable. Here are the six most-loved series.
The Genesis Series is Mercer Culinary best. The Genesis knife blades are made from X50CrMoV15 top German steel. They are precision-forged with a full bolster for great balance and handling.
The Mercer Culinary Renaissance Series knives are a popular choice. These knives are made from common German steel (X50CrMoV15), which is also used in higher-end knives.
- MX3 Series
The MX3 Series knives by Mercer are a special series that only features knives with Japanese inspiration. MX3 knives are precision-forged from VG-10 Japanese super steel and feature full-tang and black Delrin handles. This knife’s blades are made from the same steel that you would find in some of my very high-end Japanese knives.
- Zum Series
The ZuM Series knives by Mercer Culinary have a unique handle shape. These knives have high-carbon German Stainless Steel blades. The full tang extends to the Delrin handle. ZuM knives are similar to the popular Renaissance Series. They have a shorter bolster which allows for better balance and makes it easier to sharpen and hon the blade.
The Millennia Series knives by Mercer are extremely affordable. Although they aren’t as good as the knives mentioned above, their quality isn’t poor. The Millennia Series is an excellent example of a “starter” knife. Stamped (not forged), they are made from inexpensive Japanese steel (X30Cr13).
Another specialty-type knife is the Praxis Series knives from Mercer Culinary. All of them are made with a triple-riveted natural rosewood handle. This is the same knife my grandmother used back in the day. These knives are almost identical to the Millennia Series, except for the handle material. These knives are made from the same stamped X30Cr13 Japanese stainless steel. These handles are not recommended unless you love rosewood handles.
Mercer Knives Review
1. Mercer Culinary Millennia Bread Knife
Nothing is more frustrating than trying to cut through a loaf of crusty bread only to find a heap of crumbs and pieces. A quality carbon steel blade is essential. It should have a sharp edge and enough weight to slice a loaf of bread without any problems.
Even better, you don’t have to spend a lot. This is what the Mercer Culinary 10-Inch Wide Bread knife does. This piece has almost no disadvantage, except that it doesn’t come with a sheath. The blade and serrations can be used by both right- and left-handed cooks. The blade is not stainless, but stain-free. It will keep its gorgeous finish for many years if you wash it and dry it by hand. Chefs swear by their Mercer knife.
- NSF-certified handle resists germ buildup
- There is no sheath
2. Mercer Culinary 8-Inch Forged Chef’s Knife
This Mercer Culinary Renaissance 8 Inch Forged Chef’s Knife has been a workhorse in the professional kitchen. It is made of high-quality German steel carbon steel.
One single piece of steel runs the length of the knife including the handle. This allows the chef to maintain a better balance while chopping.
The durable handle is made from Delrin and is NSF-certified for commercial kitchens. A blade of this quality requires a bit more effort. It should not be washed in the dishwasher. Instead, you should use bleach or let it soak. It can discolor even if it is washed in stainless steel. This purchase will provide long-lasting performance for a reasonable price.
- One-piece construction runs the full length of the blade
- NSF certified
- Great balance
- A single blade is as expensive as a complete home kitchen set.
3. Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set
The Genesis knife is the perfect small knife for precision cuts when preparing fruits, vegetables, and decorations. This small, forged steel blade can be used to create amazing designs by the chef.
Its non-slip Santoprene grip ensures that it doesn’t slip when you are focusing on carving a centerpiece. This blade is extremely affordable, and it is a great way to begin your quality knife collection. It can be more challenging to make the perfect edge with a small blade. To avoid discoloration or pitting, it should be washed by hand.
- Versatile size helps create stunning garnishes
- Non-slip handle
- It can be hard to sharpen small sizes.
- Maintenance is required
4. Mercer Culinary M22608 Millennia 8 Inch Chef’s Knife
It’s not the most expensive chef’s knife available. It’s a cheap stamped blade made of high-carbon, midrange steel. The handle is a generic-looking NSF-certified synthetic handle with an integrated finger guard. It’s not as elegant as the wooden handles found on chef’s knives.
It’s great for getting work done. Although the stamped blade is lighter than a full-forged, full-tang Shun it’s sharp enough to cut tomatoes. Although the X30Cr13 steel is a bit too hard or soft to achieve your perfect edge, it’s easy to maintain at home. It can also be used for standard grinding without any problems. Although the aesthetics may be lacking, you will be able to overcome them once you see how grippy and comfy it is.
- Cheap price
- Less durable
5. Mercer Culinary Zum Forged Chef’s Knife
The Zum series is the most elegant and sleek of all Mercer’s knives. It focuses on a simple design and great ergonomics. The Delrin handle is a subtly molded synthetic material that provides excellent grip even in wet conditions. The handle balances the blade that is made from one piece of high-carbon stainless steel. A knife series is as versatile and beautiful as it is practical thanks to its rounded spine, which bends into a point.
- Look great
- Very comfortable to use
- Not enough information
Mercer Genesis vs Renaissance
They are very similar in design, the Mercer Genesis series knives and the Mercer Renaissance series knives. They can sometimes be confused, but more often consumers don’t know which knife to purchase. It can be difficult to choose between them, admit it. Let’s take a look at the differences between them. Let’s take a closer look at these knife lines.
Comparing Mercer Genesis vs Renaissance shows that the knife is essentially the same. Both knives have the same blade size and shape. The Genesis and Renaissance knives use the same German steel blades, which are X50CrMoV15. Both knives are forged with the same quality as one another.
The bolster on the back is where the Genesis and Renaissance knives by Mercer are different. The Genesis has a full bolster that adds weight to the knife making it appear heavier. The handle is also non-slip and has a soft feel. The Renaissance series has only a half-bolster. This makes it lighter and easier to use for smaller hands. Because the bolster is not in the way of sharpening, the half bolster makes it much easier to sharpen the knife.
Cleaning And Maintenance
Because of the chemicals and high water temperatures, Mercer advises against washing the Genesis Chef knife inside a dishwasher. This could cause the handle to crack. You should wash your chef knife with warm soapy water. After you have washed your knife, dry it with a towel. Proper care will ensure your knife performs well.
This knife is made from high-carbon German steel which prevents rust, corrosion, and discoloration. However, it should not be soaked for prolonged periods. This could lead to pitting or discoloration.
Although the edge of a chef knife is capable of holding its edge well, I find that it performs better when you keep it sharpened. When honing does not bring the edge back, it’s time to sharpen the knife with a whetstone. The full bolster can make it difficult to sharpen the knife all the way to its heel when sharpening.
The handle is made of a single piece and is covered by the tang. This allows food and juices to stay out of any cracks by washing the handle in a single piece.
After you’ve cleaned and sharpened the Mercer Chef knife, it is time to store it in a case or block. This will protect your knife from scratches and chips, as well as prevent any injuries.
What You Need To Know About Buying Mercer Knives
There are a few things you should know before you buy your Mercer Knives Set. We will give you a quick overview of those parts in this review.
1. Types of Mercer Knives
- German Steel vs Japanese Steel
Two types of steel are used by Mercer for their knives. Both knives are excellent and each has unique characteristics that make them stand apart. The Japanese Stainless line is one and the German Steel is the other.
German steel blades are thicker and heavier. Because of their versatility, they are perfect for everyday cooking. These knives are extremely durable and can withstand temperature changes and what they touch.
Japanese steel is a better choice for delicate, finer slicing. Japanese steel is more precise because it’s thinner and sharper. Japanese steel is more carbon-rich than German steel. They can be very thin without breaking. They are also more flexible.
German steel and Japanese steel are both excellent for their respective purposes, so the difference is not about quality. The differences are in functionality and use. It is up to you to decide which one best suits your needs.
There are two things that make the difference between high-quality, durable blades and cheap, fragile ones. They are the materials used and whether they have been stamped or forged.
High carbon stainless steel knives made from one piece of steel are the gold standard in kitchen knives. This guarantees a knife with a sharp edge and good edge retention. The knife will last less time if it is made from cheaper steel or one that has been molded rather than heated. It is no accident that high-carbon stainless steel forged blades are more expensive than other knives.
The tang is a description of an element in a knife’s construction: It describes how far the metal extends into its handle.
Full-tang knives are the best quality and most well-balanced. These knives have one piece made of steel, which extends from the tip to the handle all the way to the butt. Semi-tang knives are only half-tangible, which makes them less expensive but less durable. Knives with no tang are the most durable and should be replaced approximately once a year.
Without being able to actually use the knife, it is difficult to find the right kitchen knife handle. It’s difficult to determine if a knife handle is right for you unless it fits your hand and feels comfortable.
Frequently Asked Questions About Mercer Knives
Before I wrap up my recommendations, let me address some of the most frequently asked questions about Mercer Culinary knife.
1. Where Is Mercer Manufactured?
All Mercer knives are made in Taiwan. These knives are made of the same German steel as Wusthof or Zwilling and have been subject to the same quality tests.
2. Are Mercer Knives Dishwashers Safe?
Mercer Culinary, like most knife manufacturers, recommends against washing your knives in the dishwasher. The best ways to wash your knives are to wash them by hand in warm water, and not allow them to soak for too long.
3. What Kind Of Warranty Does Mercer Culinary Offer?
The limited lifetime warranty on Mercer knives covers defects in materials or workmanship, provided the product is used under normal conditions.
If you are looking for quality knives at a reasonable price, Mercer knives are a great choice. You don’t have to spend hundreds on quality knives.
We tried to concentrate on the important points in this Mercer knife review to help you make the right choice. This is a great place to start if you have never purchased a knife set. If you’re passionate about cooking, a quality knife set is essential.