Here at T&C, we pride ourselves on our discerning eye for quality. With Tried & True, our editors will give you an inside look at the pieces they simply cannot live without.
They say the kitchen is the heart of the home. I’m not sure who said it, but whoever they are, they’re not wrong because the kitchen is easily the most used room in my apartment. As someone who lives in New York, a city famously known for its culture of dining out, I cook a heck of a lot. I’m talking dinner most nights of the week, and breakfast and lunch on weekends and days I’m working from home. So you can imagine how important high-quality kitchenware is to me.
I recently moved to a new apartment with a full kitchen and as part of the move, I made some major upgrades. A lot of my previous items and appliances were essentially out-of-date hand-me-downs from my mother’s kitchen, so fresh cooking essentials were necessary. Chief among the things I first added to the space was the Material Kitchen The Iconics Set, and there are simply not enough ways to explain how much I love it—but let me try!
As you can tell by its name, the set comes stocked with everything you need for cooking up a mean meal, all housed in a sleek wooden base. There are 10 utensils included, all of which have their own useful functions (more on that later), but my favorite of the bunch are the three knives. The blades, which are crafted from Japanese high-carbon and stainless steel, come sold perfectly sharp and make chopping, dicing, slicing, and julienning a breeze. Oh what a difference a sharp knife makes from a blunt knife! I use the 4-inch paring knife the most for my veggie prep work, but the 8-inch knife is fantastic for bigger chopping jobs and working with meat and the serrated knife is perfect for slicing bread. And the coolest part of all? The base has a built-in magnet for holding the knives and keeping them razor-sharp. (Full disclosure: It’s been a little over three months since I got The Iconics and the knives aren’t at all blunt.)
The set also comes with stainless steel tongs, which I’m obsessed with, too. What’s so special about these specific tongs, you ask? Point them down and squeeze, and they’ll open up wide; and when you point them up-words and squeeze, they lock closed. Genius. Equally as cool: the whisk, which stands upright on its own and doesn’t make a mess.
As for the rest of the set, there’s a wooden spoon and metal spoon which I use a lot, as well as a slotted spoon (I like that for picking up poached eggs) and fish spatula, which I haven’t gotten to play with a whole lot but am excited to continue experimenting with it.
But above all else, it’s really the base that holds all the utensils the seals the deal for me. It’s undeniably the star of my countertop and keeps the area clutter-free. Every time I have guests over, The Iconics is always well-received with “oohs” and “ahhs.” With Thanksgiving just around the corner, followed by Christmas and Hanukkah, I couldn’t think of a better gift for the hostess or homecook in your life, or even as a thoughtful housewarming present. Whether the recipient is a foodie or not, the Iconics set is bound to get so much use.