'Top Chef' Stephanie Izard and Chicago Cutlery® Knives Reveal Sharpest Cities in North America

New Survey Shows Canadians 'Edge' Out Culinary Skills of Americans; U.S. Challenges Canada for Ultimate Bragging Rights

Oct 14, 2010, 09:05 ET from Chicago Cutlery

ROSEMONT, Ill., Oct. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- When it comes to cooking habits and knife use in the kitchen, a new survey(1) of the "Sharpest Cities in North America" fielded for the Chicago Cutlery brand finds that Canadians are sharper than Americans, setting the stage for yet another spirited rivalry between the two countries. The study, released today, measured U.S. and Canadian consumers' attitudes about cooking and food preparation, in conjunction with the launch of Chicago Cutlery knives in Canada.

"It's no secret that the U.S. and Canada share a number of age-old rivalries, and the culinary world is no different," said Maureen Collins, Chicago Cutlery brand director. "Whether you're talking professional hockey or the best cuisine, we enjoy the spirited competition between our countries and wanted to have a little fun as we introduce our brand in Canada."

The survey revealed that Canadians top the "Sharp Cities Index," with Montreal and Vancouver outranking American cities like New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. In fact, the contrast between U.S. cooks and her neighbors to the north was evident:

  • More Aspiring Chefs in the U.S.: Canadians cook more often than Americans, using knives to prepare an average of 21 meals per week, compared to seven meals per week in the U.S. This and other factors lead to Canadians indexing higher as "Master Chefs," versus the U.S., where they index higher as "Aspiring Chefs."
  • Houston Outranks Top U.S. Cities: Houston edged out residents of New York, L.A., and Chicago when it comes to cooking and knife knowledge, making this city's residents the sharpest among those surveyed.
  • Pressed for Time or Not: New Yorkers indexed highest among cooks who are pressed for time, compared to Chicago residents who had more time to cook.
  • Most-used knives: The most popular type of knife used is the paring knife (30% of Canadians use most often and 26.5% of Americans), while santoku knives round out the bottom of the list (2.9% and 2.3%).

The Chicago Cutlery brand, best-known for its innovative collection of kitchen knives, also plans to reach a new generation of aspiring cooks, by enlisting Top Chef winner and restaurateur Stephanie Izard to participate in the campaign. With her help, Chicago Cutlery will demonstrate how its innovative products inspire confidence in the kitchen, such as the reusable blade protectors that go from the store to the drawer – helping keep knives sharp and drawers organized at the same time.

A North American "Block" Party

To highlight the products and challenge the survey findings that Canadians are the 'sharpest knife in the drawer' in a lighthearted way, the Chicago Cutlery brand has assembled design and culinary teams to participate in a sculpting competition hosted by Izard, for international bragging rights to determine who really has the sharpest cutlery skills in North America.

"While our Chicago Cutlery knives are typically used to carve a turkey, dice some carrots or chop an onion or two -- we are putting our knives into the hands of some of the USA's and Canada's brightest design students to bring our products to life," Collins added.

Team USA will compete against Team Canada at the St. Lawrence Market's Market Kitchen to re-create iconic U.S. and Canadian landmarks out of oversized blocks of young cheddar cheese and other edible ingredients. The teams plan to recreate famous monuments, from the White House and Statue of Liberty to Toronto's famed CN Tower in a highly visual way. The event will be judged by Izard, as well as some of her Canadian counterparts.

"I'm excited to bring a little Chicago flavor to the great city of Toronto, and help demonstrate how Chicago Cutlery products help you cook like a pro," said Izard. "We'll have a little fun as Team USA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Kendall College competes head-to-head against Team Canada from the Ontario College of Art and Design, for the international title."

In addition to her hosting duties, throughout the program Izard will help home chefs nationwide learn the basics of dicing, chopping and storing their knives, as they build their culinary talents in the kitchen.  

For more information about the Chicago Cutlery Sharpest Cities campaign, additional survey findings, and tips on how Chicago Cutlery knives help aspiring cooks gain confidence in the kitchen, visit www.chicagocutlery.com.

Chicago Cutlery is a registered trademark of World Kitchen (GHC), LLC, used with permission by World Kitchen, LLC.

About World Kitchen, LLC

Headquartered in Rosemont, Illinois, World Kitchen and its affiliates manufacture and market metal cookware, glass, ceramic and metal bakeware, tabletop products, cutlery and kitchen tools sold under well-known brand names, including Baker's Secret®, Chicago Cutlery®, Corelle®, CorningWare®, EKCO®, Magnalite®, OLFA®, OLO®, Pyrex®, Revere® and Visions®. The company and its affiliates employ approximately 2,800 people, and have major manufacturing and distribution operations in North America and Asia-Pacific regions. For more information, visit www.worldkitchen.com.

(1) Survey MethodologyToronto, Ontario-based Nanos Research conducted a random telephone survey of 1,000 Americans and 1,014 Canadians aged 18 years and older. The random telephone survey of 1,000 Americans was conducted between September 7th and September 12th, 2010. A random telephone survey of 1,014 Canadians was conducted between August 28th and September 3rd, 2010. The margin of accuracy for both a random sample of 1,000 Americans and 1,014 Canadians is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The Sharp Cities Index was developed by Nanos Research and measured attitudes and behaviors toward cooking and the use of knives. It was based on a composite "sharp score" out of a maximum of 100 points using lifestyle preferences, frequency of cooking and behavior related to knife sharpening. Key variables used to build the index included: interest in new recipes, cooking enjoyment, cooking as a social activity, the use of knives for cooking, the number of meals prepared using a knife and behavior related to sharpening of knives.


Lisa Winternitz, 312.988.2146


SOURCE Chicago Cutlery