Opinel no. 8 penknife
This is a classic pocket knife made in Savoie, France. There are 5 parts to it the blade, 2 ferrules (metal rings), a handle and a rivet to keep it all together. The cunning part is that one of the ferrules rotates on top of the fixed ferrule, closing the groove where the blade sits so the blade can be locked open.
A great knife for everyday use - cheese, sausage, fruit, the improvised picnic sandwich. The blade is a nice length and it retains its sharpness well. It is not a fancy thing but it does what it is supposed to do without fuss.
Its beauty lies in its apparent simplicity - though this is hard won, balancing the different shapes of the wood and metal so that it is strong yet flexible and the whole thing does not fall apart.
This particular example was bought at Marc Veyrat’s restaurant in Veyrier-du-lac near Annecy after a meal of transcendent skill and impeccable sourcing. Marc Veyrat is a bona fide genius, this restaurant was one of only two to be awarded 20/20 by the Gault Millau guide. He is wilfully eccentric and anyone who was lucky enough to visit his Ferme de mon pére restaurant in Megève (the other one that received the perfect score from Gault Millau) can attest to his ambition and flair - internal (and hermetically sealed) windows afforded diners views of the various components of a highly picturesque working farm including living animals such as chickens, rabbits and cows. The meals I have eaten of his were astonishing, unforgettable and dementedly expensive and I do not begrudge one cent of the price.