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November 03, 2022 2 min read

We love our Opinel retailers! Learn about their business, how they discovered Opinel, why they brought Opinel into their store. They even share some local tips! This month's feature is Chicago-based Northwestern Cutlery with Vice President, Jessica Ruhl.

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Northwestern Cutlery is a family owned and operated business in the city of Chicago. Northwestern Cutlery started as a cart with a built-in grindstone. An Italian man rode around on this cart through the historic Fulton Market meatpacking district sharpening the knives of all the locals. That determined Italian man, Henry Colonna, created Northwestern Cutlery in 1972. Generations later his son-in-law (Marty) and granddaughter (Jessica) joined the team and made Northwestern Cutlery a third generation family business.

Opinel retailer Northwestern Cutlery

How would you describe your store?

Northwestern Cutlery, is also known as “The Candy Store for Cooks”. It caters to anyone who loves to cook. We started as a company who focused on servicing the meat-packing industry and have since evolved into a full service store for professional and amateur cooks alike in Chicago. We encourage customers to stop in and have your knives sharpened while you wait. While waiting, pick up that hard to find gadget, add to your cutlery collection, or find the perfect apron to wear while cooking. Our friendly staff is what sets us apart from other companies. Our team is full of long-term, dedicated employees that are passionate about what we do. Stop by our store to experience an “old school” family owned brick and mortar!

Opinel retailer Northwestern cutleryOpinel retailer northwestern cutlery

How did you hear about Opinel in the first place?

Since we have been in the cutlery world for decades, we have always been familiar with the brand. After a few customers asked if we carried Opinel, we started reading product reviews to determine if it would be a good fit for our store. It wasn’t long after that that we reached out to Opinel and began selling the brand in our store.

What do you and your customers like most about Opinel?

Opinel is a multifunctional and dependable brand that appeals to any budget. When customers ask for a pocket knife that they can take camping or use at home, Opinel is always our answer. What is your favorite Opinel product and why? No.08 Carbon Steel Folding Knife - it is a great first pocket knife for anyone. It’s a classic!

Opinel classic No.08 Carbon

What is your favorite thing to do in Chicago?

Eat! We are so grateful to live in a city with a diverse food culture. You can find the best diners, hot dog stands, food trucks, and even Michelin star restaurants.

Northwestern Cutlery

7138 W Higgins Ave, Chicago, IL 60656
(312) 421-3666

Experience our knives at your local shops! With over 1,000 retailers in the US, there is most certainly one near you! Check out the Store LocatorNot finding a local retailer? We'd love to hear where you think we should be found! email

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