Gorgeous Handcrafted Knives from New West KnifeWorks, Plus a Giveaway!

Ever since I inked the deal on my first book, I’ve been turning my kitchen upside-down every week, cramming the fridge and stuffing the pantry silly with a superabundance of vegs and herbs. It goes without saying that I spend a lot of time breaking down all that food on my massive butcher block with…

Linda Ly
New West KnifeWorks handcrafted knife

Ever since I inked the deal on my first book, I’ve been turning my kitchen upside-down every week, cramming the fridge and stuffing the pantry silly with a superabundance of vegs and herbs. It goes without saying that I spend a lot of time breaking down all that food on my massive butcher block with an arsenal of knives à la Dexter.

I own a lot of knives, mostly German and Japanese blades from a cleaver to a santoku, but one of the recent standouts is a new knife I was given from a company called New West KnifeWorks — and they’re based right here in the USA.

I have to admit that the first time I laid eyes on their signature Fusionwood 2.0 line (from which this particular knife came), I was simply smitten with its good looks. This is one gorgeous tool!

Fusionwood 2.0 handle

Hand-finished in Massachusetts

Handle made from sustainably harvested hardwood from Vermont

Made in the USA

Wyoming-based New West KnifeWorks

And not only is it gorgeous, it’s also one of the greenest knives you can buy. The handle is crafted from sustainably harvested hardwood in Vermont, then paired with a high-performance steel blade and assembled by artisans in Massachusetts — all in a factory run completely on hydro-electric power. Every knife is engineered and tested in New West KnifeWorks’ headquarters in Wyoming and given a lifetime guarantee for non-commercial use. In an era where stuff is not often made to last, it’s assuring to know that a small and conscientious company stands behind the quality of its products.

Aside from aesthetics, one of the things that intrigued me about the line was how it was described on the site: “Combining the heft of a European knife with the razor sharp edge of a super thin Asian blade, Fusionwood 2.0 gives you the best of both worlds.” Since I own and love both kinds of knives, I couldn’t wait to test this hybrid in my kitchen.

I chose the Mini Chopper Chef Knife (in the Tahoe Shoreline color) for a few reasons: I didn’t yet have this blade shape, I liked the idea of a scaled-down chef’s knife (which sometimes feels unwieldy in my hand), and I felt the small size made it a great travel knife (as I always bring my own knife when I stay in a vacation rental somewhere).

Mini Chopper Chef Knife

Right before my week-long ski trip to Utah, the Mini Chopper arrived in a sturdy burgundy leather sheath (a bonus!) and I put it to use making salads, stews, and pastas every night in my cabin (all of them very prep-intensive meals). It sliced through super ripe tomatoes like butter (where I’d normally use a serrated blade) and held its own chopping heftier vegetables like potatoes.

Sharp steel blade

Good for day-to-day kitchen tasks

When I came home, I used it every day, several times a day, for slicing and dicing everything from garlic to onion. Despite a diminutive blade length of 3.375 inches, it feels comfortable and balanced in my hand and handles day-to-day chopping beautifully — it is the Mini Chopper, after all. After six weeks of use, it hasn’t lost its sharpness, and I have a good feeling it’ll keep going till my manuscript deadline in May (and hopefully beyond that!).

Short but hefty blade

This week, New West KnifeWorks has teamed up with Garden Betty to give away a Mini Chopper Chef Knife! One lucky reader will win a Mini Chopper ($129 total value) in your choice of color.

How to enter: Leave a comment below and tell me what you love to cook this time of year that would make great use of this knife. (Any favorite recipes from my blog? No, it won’t increase your chances of winning, but I’m always curious to know what my readers are making!) To receive an additional entry, follow @theGardenBetty on Twitter, and leave a second comment below indicating your Twitter username. You have two chances to win!

The giveaway will end at 11:59 PM Pacific Standard Time on Friday, February 28, 2014. Winner will be drawn at random and announced the following week. Good luck!

(By the way, you can also join New West KnifeWorks’ mailing list for a chance to win a seven-piece knife set. So really, you have three chances to win something!)

Giveaway Rules

  1. Giveaway begins February 24, 2014 and ends February 28, 2014.
  2. No purchase is necessary. To enter, leave a comment on this blog post.
  3. Only US residents ages 18 and older are eligible to enter.
  4. Two entries allowed per person.
  5. Odds of winning are based on number of entries received.
  6. Winner will be drawn at random.
  7. If winner does not respond within 48 hours after time of contact, that entry will be forfeited and a new winner will be drawn.

This post is brought to you by New West KnifeWorks. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that support Garden Betty.


  1. Soup! It’s raining and cool where I am, so it’s perfect soup weather. Need a good knife to chop veggies for soup.

  2. This time of year, I am chopping all kinds of yumminess for soups. Brrr….when is Spring going to be here?

  3. I love purple cabbage! I would use that amazing knife to slice through that awesome veggie 🙂

  4. Such a beautiful knife! This time of year I am still using our winter squash from the garden and smoking it on the grill then cutting it up and cooking with onions and apples (all chopped, of course) and broth – blending it all together and playing with seasonings to create one of my Sunday Soups! – served up with fresh bread and a salad and its the perfect meal 🙂

  5. This is a beautiful knife! This time of year in Ohio, I’m dreaming of fresh veggies from my summer garden, while I chop what I can find at the local grocery. I’m adding a fresh beet to my morning juicing routine for the sweetness and red color.

  6. Hi Betty. We prepare kale chips, served in an ice cream cone paper, that we give away (free) to the school children in our very urban food desert here in Oakland, CA. We are trying to ween these young adults off of potato chips and on to kale chips!

  7. Ceviche! Luckily, we live in Ventura and have a great fish market every Saturday in the harbor. I would use this knife to cut the fresh, deep red Ahi into ceviche-size pieces. Then slice the limes and lemons for juicing. Then chop the fragrant cilantro, crisp red onion and sweet mango. Finally, a slice to open the creamy ripe Haas avocado and cut into pieces. Toss. Chill. Grub.

  8. The recipe I’d use this knife for most is sauteed brussel sprouts and kilbasa. I know most people hear brussel sprouts and think “uuugh”. I did too at one time. I am a single dad with a picky teenager and 10 year old and they love this recipe.

    I start by slicing some garlic. I set it aside to let the allicin begin decomposing. I put a healthy dollop of bacon grease in my magic iron skillet over med-med high heat, and then I slice an onion, the kielbasa, and the brussel sprouts which I slice into thirds. I put the garlic in the skillet, and when the smell makes my mouth start watering I add the remaining ingredients. I add a good splash of EVOO over it all and I saute them until until the sprouts are tender and the kielbasa is good and done (greasy). I typically serve over basmati rice.

    I currently have to choose between an 8″ chef knife that is too wide, or a 6″ chef knife that isn’t wide enough. The mini chopper looks like the love child of these two knives.

    I know many out there are listening for the sound of my arteries hardening, but since switching to my high fat diet, my cholesterol numbers have become phenomenal. My HDL is 74, My LDL is 64, and my triglycerides are 51.

    P.S.: this blog has inspired me to start truly living my life again. After reading about your camera, I bought the Pen E-PM2 and am photographing again after a 20 year hiatus. Thank you!

  9. Hi GardenBetty, I’m a stay-at-home dad and a terrible cook, but I try my hardest to prepare dinner for my kids and wife for when she gets home. I would say I enjoy making chicken enchiladas the most. Although wifey eats it, I can tell it’s not that pretty to look at. I’d like to blame my cooking utensils, but I know it’s me. Anyhow, keep up the great work, love the blog and your twitter account.

  10. Since moving home from school, I’ve been trying to get my family to eat more vegetables. I would keep it simple and use the knife to prepare salads and soups with hearty vegetables!

  11. I love to fill my fridge with quick, easy things for the kids to grab before and after their sporting activities. Things like cleaned fresh fruit and veggies, granola, chopped cooked meat ready to turn into a number of snacks and meals. We have seven people living in our house so many days, I feel like a prep cook but it’s so worth it when they can easily open the fridge and find yummy things right away!

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