Knives have been made in Solingen, Germany for centuries. The town has a knife museum. MetroKitchen brand experts visited it when touring the Wusthof factory. It was amazing to see early German knives, as well as weaponry. The Deutsches Klingenmuseum (Blade Museum)
Wusthof and Henckels are the top two German knife manufacturers. Wusthof is still owned and run by members of the Wusthof family. Henckels, now known as Zwilling JA Henckels, is a conglomerate and owns a variety of cookware companies, including Staub cast iron and Demeyer cookware, as well as the revered Henckels cutlery brand.
German knives come in forged and less expensive stamped versions. Most have a cutting angle of 14 to 22 degrees. Rockwell hardness ranges from 56 to 58, a measure of a knife's strength and durability.