A quick look in the opposite corner confirmed what I already knew.
Nethergreen Farm! The name Orford! The hand written word England! Oh Happy Day! It was the knives! The spoon knives had come! I could hardly believe they were here! With a herculean effort I composed myself in case the neighbors were watching, and calmly walked into the house. There, in the safety of the kitchen, I quickly opened my treasure, being careful not to damage anything that may be inside. Enclosed were several business cards from Ben, a hand written note from Lois thanking me for my order, and a receipt for my payment. Oh yeah, and a matched pair of spoon knives!
A matched pair? Yep. It is not every day that you order spoon knives from across the sea, so when you do, you get a set. Right and Left. They were securely packaged, with the pre-sharpened blades securely wrapped in a length of leather for protection. I slowly unwound the leather from the first and held it up to the light to inspect it. As expected, the quality was impeccable. I rolled the knife over in my hands and saw the maker's mark.
I quickly unwrapped the second, and saw that they were truly a matched pair. The bevel is even and true on both knives, the curve is smooth and even, and both knives are identical in shape. Both knives have been buffed to a mirror polish, and arrive pre-honed and sharp enough to work with straight from the package.
I went straight to the shop and used them immediately. They cut extremely well. They have a thinner blade than I am used too, but they are a joy to use, they cut easily and I am really pleased with my purchase.
I have been using a Mora crook knife to carve the bowls on all my spoons. I thought it has performed nicely and the only problem that I have had with it, has been the width of the knife blade. It doesn't handle steep curves very well, because the blade is too thick. I also have some issues with smaller spoons because of the size of the Mora blade. Looking at Ben's knives, I know that I will not have the same issue. His blades are much thinner and will handle some of the cuts much better than what I have been using.
One thing that I would like to mention was that my experience with Ben and Lois was a true joy. The transaction was handled quickly and efficiently. Email responses were very quick, even after accounting for time differences. I got the impression that Ben and Lois were looking to make sure that I was a happy customer, something that I find lacking more often than not in today's marketplace. My purchase was securely packaged, and made it from the UK to the US in 14 days. Would I buy from the again? Most assuredly, even more so if I was local. The smiling and friendly faces that appear on the top of their website has proven to be a genuine reflection of how the Orford's do business. Click the link below to check out their site.
Wow, this has been a really long post. I have so much more that I want to talk about, but it is late and morning comes early. Happy Carving!