We stand on our fathers shoulders. The trade of knife grinding goes back 5 generations in our family, and somehow, we've managed to make it work, year after year, one knife after the other. Grinding knives and shaping blades is a little known trade to those outside the meat cutting and restaurant industry, and in many parts, to those within as well. But, the niche exists. people need to eat, and therefore the edge of a knife continues to be in demand.
Growing up in the knife business has been a privilege that I can only try to put into words. I suppose it goes with most family businesses, but there is a unique way of understanding your trade or any skill for that matter, when you have been learning it your entire life. Listening to mom and dad discuss the routes that went out that day, standing beside dad at the grinding wheel and going out on routes from a very young age; when you grow up in a small family business, there's no division between the two....life is the family business.
After high school I went off to college and managed to become even more involved in the knife business. My brother Peter took the helm at the knife shop and week by week I began adding customers to our Milwaukee routes. Over the years we've grown, but not so much that we've lost touch. The fundamentals that my parents put in place are still the foundation of our lives and business. The knife business has changed over the years, but we've managed to keep the traditions alive. We're not grinding knives on the street anymore (thank god), the pedals have been replaced with electric motors, stainless has replaced carbon, and the list goes on, but overall, the fundamentals remain the same.