Solingen, the 'City of Blades'
Family-owned for seven generations, Wüsthof was founded in Solingen, Germany, over 200 years ago. To this day, every Wüsthof knife is still expertly crafted in this legendary city, long renowned as 'The City of Blades'. Read on to find out how Solingen became a centre of excellence for the blade industry and home to Wüsthof, as Wüsthof developed from a small grinding mill into one of the world’s leading manufacturers of precision-forged kitchen knives.
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
Located in Western Germany, near the banks of the Wupper River, Solingen has been home to master blacksmiths for over 2,000 years and, generation after generation, has earned a reputation for being the city in which the world’s finest cutlery is crafted.
Why Solingen? During the 18th and 19th centuries, the many creeks and spillways of the river in Solingen were perfectly suited to providing power for the production of blades. Streams and rivers were dammed so that the power of the flowing water could be used to drive grinding stones, small mechanical hammers and other mechanical equipment. This is how the famous ‘Kotten’ or small grinding workshops came to be. Over time, up to 120 of these workshops sprang up in Solingen and the surrounding area, one of these being the small Wüsthof Kotten.
It was in 1814, over 200 years ago, that the family's ancestor, Abraham Wüsthof, founded his ‘factory for fine steel wares’. Wüsthof has since become synonymous with form, function and uncompromising quality. So much so, that Wüsthof’s knives have earned the trust of professional and home chefs across the globe, making Wüsthof one of the world's leading knife brands with over 350 employees crafting products that are available in over 80 countries.
THE SOLINGEN DECREE
Today, around 90% of all German knife and cutlery manufacturers are based in Solingen. Knives made in Solingen have long been honoured and prized for their outstanding quality and craftsmanship. For that reason, the name of Solingen has been protected with legislation, ‘The Solingen Decree’, so that this dedication to quality is maintained and that knives made in the city still meet the most exacting standards.
Wüsthof continues to call the picturesque city of Solingen its home, and proudly marks each blade as ‘Made in Solingen’. Head this way to browse Wüsthof’s full range.