Cutco knifes seem to be more of a regional item than a national one. I grew up in Pennsylvania, but now live in California. I remember hearing the name Cutco when I live in PA, but never heard it out here. When I started taking cooking seriously I purchased knives mostly made by Wusthof and Kershaw. Knives that could cut god if need be (especially my Santoku). When I went back home for xmas this year, I had an opportunity to use Cutco knives, being as my brother had bought my mom a chef's knife and a set of steak knives for her birthday the previous year.
Knowing that the block of knives my mom had were back from when I was in grade school, I searched through the drawers to find a chef's knife protected in cardboard bearing the Cutco name.
I tried to cut a potato and almost took a finger off. I studied the blade, comparing it to that of my Wusthof Classic 10-inch, which is close to being the finest knife you can buy. The blade had a shiny finish that I'd never seen, and instead of a smooth grade down to the edge, there was only a grade from about a half-inch down...imagine an Arial-font V compared to a Terminal-font V. The edge was also slightly serrated, making sharpening much more difficult.
I went back digging around the drawers in the kitchen to find the knife sharpener I remembered her having years ago. I found it and ran the blade through it a few times, making cutting a little better.
Later on I was discussing this with my mom, saying how's it's not really safe to have a knife that dull be the workhorse of her cutlery drawer. She assured me that it had a lifetime guarantee on the edge.
Well, I had a Chris Farley moment and quoted Tommy Boy, "Because they know all they solda ya was a guaranteed piece of shit."
She said it was 80 bucks, I said, "no way"! My Wusthof only cost maybe 10 or 20 more and could literally cut it in half. She bragged the handle was made out of the same plastic they make bowling balls out off, I scoffed, "This is the kind of knife you pick up at the restaurant supply store for ten dollars!"
We didn't get into the fact the each steak knife she had cost $40 each.
Bottom line. I've tried many knives before, from the lowest end die-cut to top-of-the-line forged. The knives fall somewhere in the middle. Their website gives no detail on metal composition, and I think they cover up the low quality by making it very, very shiny.
I'm getting my mom a Wusthof block for her next birthday. Cutco knives are for chumps.