I tend to stop in here when I'm looking for an interesting or different gift for someone. Most recent purchase, a clay dish for roasting fish. The staff here is pretty friendly and they are willing to talk through what you may be looking for and helping out when they can.
Another tip: this is THE place to have your knives professionally sharpened. They are fast and cheap.
I've browsed Kitchen Arts a few times but have never been brave enough to buy anything. They do have some unique and very high-quality cooking utensils, cookware and gadgets, but I usually tend toward cheap things when it comes to the kitchen, as I'm not in it very much! Some items seemed unnecessarily overpriced. My roommates picked up a few items here like a blender and stirring spoons and were very happy with their purchases. Everything lasted quite well and worked just fine.
This is a must see store for all you culinary enthusiasts out there. Located on Newbury Street, the shelves are packed with everything you need for yourself or that gadget hungry chef that is hard to buy for. They have hard to find items such as oddly shaped cannoli forms. But they also have a vast selection of everyday items such as mixing bowls, baking pans and storange containers. I bought an espresso machine here at a reasonable price and I just love it.
I was doubtful over the poor reviews I read about the knife sharpening here, but my knife came out exactly as the other posters described. My knife was pristine but beginning to dull when I brought it in. What I received in return was a jagged mess. The blade is pitted and rough. This was a Wushtof knife. I am very disappointed.
Pros: nice store, cool stuff
Cons: bad knife sharpening
I never bother with responses or reviews but I was irate to see the poor review about knife sharpening.
I have had my knives sharpened at Kitchen Arts for years! Every time- wonderful. Once I broke the tip of a knife and Owen re-mastered it into a smaller version. The price is always so affordable and the workmanship always top-notch.
I would not go anywhere else. Owen and Kitchen Arts is the best! [No- i do not know anyone there personally or even remotely.]
Pros: Hard to find things, dyed in the wool things, newest cutting edge things - excellent customer service
Cons: high rent, higher prices
Owen Mack here, owner of Kitchen Arts and the guy who does all the knife sharpening. I sharpen about 4,000 knives a year, and have for 12 years...so that's about 48,000 knives. I sharpen and repair knives for homeowners and pros alike and in the process have learned that what is sharp to one person is dull to the next, aesthetics often trump function, and you can't keep everyone happy. Still, that's what I try to do.
I wish the fellow below had complained to me or my staff, because I would have fixed the problem. I could either finish the knives with a polished edge (resulting in no burrs at all) or cleaned up the edge as it was. I do not generally steel knives after grinding, instead I run them through a machine which leaves a bit of tooth on the blade. Most people like this, some don't. For those who don't I polish the edge or run them over a diamond steel, no extra charge. Customers need to speak up for those services!
When a customer claims I've "ruined" their knife (it happens a couple times a year) it's because either I've left more tooth on the knife than they'd like (which I can fix) or because the shape of the knife has changed slightly (a natural result of grinding a knife). I encourage customers with specific sharpening concerns to talk to me before they get their knives ground, otherwise I do what I deem best to maintain the usefulness of the knife...which means it doesn't always look the same.
Kitchen Arts 'sharpened' 12 of my knives this weekend. The work done on my knives was coarse and frankly quite amateurish. Each of the 12 was covered with rough metal burrs because they did not bother to pass the edges over a steel after grinding. Two of my knives are now ruined and the bag I used to transfer the set was returned to me full of metal shavings.
The day I dropped the knives off to be sharpened, I also looked at the shop selection of new knives. The employees were polite and attentive, but unable to answer very rudimentary questions. This lack of basic product knowledge leads me to believe that the shop probably wouldn't refund my money. That would require an employee with sufficient knowledge of knives to recognize a lousy, sub-standard sharpening job. Apparently no such employee was at work this weekend.
I was foolish not to inspect the knives before I left the store. But would that have helped? Perhaps not.
Very poor customer service. Don't get your knives sharpened here. They ruined my knife, and wouldn't compensate me.