About Us

Inside Element Knife Company At The Stanley Market

Our Story

Our Company

Element Knife Company is proud to offer high-end cutlery, sharpening services and accessories to home and pro chefs. Founded in 2010 by Chef Elan Wenzel, we have curated a collection of artisan products. With a love affair of knives and kitchen tools, Chef Wenzel has spent more than two decades ‘honing’ in on the globe's best products. As a chef driven Company, we believe it’s important that the quality of your tools and manner in which they are cared for match the depth of your enthusiasm.

Our Story

Meet The Chef

After medaling in American Culinary Federation cooking competitions, Chef Wenzel graduated from Colorado Mountain Culinary Institute as Apprentice of the Year. Subsequently, he studied in Japan, and was exposed to a broad array of cutlery, tools, sharpening stones, and techniques. Now, after more than two decades in the industry, he has developed a much deeper appreciation for Japanese cutlery. Chef Wenzel continued working as a sushi chef in Colorado, most notably Denver’s best Sushi Restaurant, Sushi Sasa. After having won recognition for cooking at the James Beard Housein NYC with The Colorado FIVE, he continues tostay active with his local community of chefs and nationally with events like Cochon555. He feels that education, support and empowerment are the answer to giving back.

Chef Elan Wenzel, Owner Of Element Knife Company
Knife Maker In Japan Forging A Blade

Our Story

An Ancient Art

For centuries, both Japan and Germany have held global recognition for their mastery in crafting exceptional knives. The rich heritage of their knife forging techniques can be traced back to the ancient art of swordsmithing. Broadly speaking, Western knife makers, including those from France, America, and Europe, are often grouped together with German Cutlery due to their close stylistic resemblances. While there are undeniable similarities between them—such as the forging, shaping, and heat treatment processes—distinct differences exist in handle materials, alloys, blade shapes, and overall philosophies.

In Japan, the tradition of single-bevel knives has been prevalent, especially in professional kitchens. These knives are meticulously designed for specific tasks, reflecting the Japanese belief in using one tool for each job. Consequently, a vast array of specialized knives has been developed for various ingredients, including eel, tuna, octopus, and more. Conversely, double-bevel knives are prized for their versatility in both shape and design.

German and Western knife making emphasizes versatility and durability, resulting in blade designs that offer a broader range of functionality and sturdier construction. However, modern German knife makers have been influenced by Japanese techniques, with many brands incorporating Japanese designs or series into their offerings. Similarly, Japanese knife makers have embraced Western influences in some of their designs.

While Japanese kitchen knives are renowned worldwide for their craftsmanship, sharpness, and durability, their story extends beyond mere culinary tools. From the ancient craft of swordsmithing to the specialized production of kitchen blades, the journey of Japanese knife making is a captivating tale of skill and evolution.

Similarly, the history of German knife making dates back to prehistoric times when cutting tools were fashioned from materials like flint, bone, and obsidian. Over the centuries, the craft evolved through various periods, each contributing to the refinement and advancement of German knives.

Chef Holding Japanese Slicing Knife Over Cutting Board

The Unique Artistry and Performance of Japanese Kitchen Knives

Globally, top chefs have taken notice and sought Japanese kitchen knives for their artful beauty and exceptional performance. In turn, Japanese knives have gained popularity and have found their way into discerning kitchens. One aspect that sets Japanese knives apart is the “sweet point”. When gripped, it is noticed right away. This is a point located one-third down the knife blade from the tip and when you swing the knife vertically you feel its optimum balance. Determined to ensure the highest quality blades, smiths embody the heritage of Japanese innovation, artistry, and dedication.

Our Partners

At Element Knife Company, 'Our Partners' isn't just a term—it's a bond. It represents a handpicked network of Colorado-owned businesses that we stand behind and who stand with us. Each member of this family is chosen for their unwavering commitment to quality, their dedication to their craft, and their passion for serving the local community. Together, we celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit of Colorado, sharing a mutual respect for exceptional products and services that elevate our state's vibrant local landscape. Dive in, discover our trusted partners, and experience the richness of local craftsmanship at its finest.

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