Top Knives of 2023

This is the second or third year in a row that I’ve put together my own personal Best of 2023 list. I’ve been a knife user and collector for about 40 years now. Some of them are carried and used regularly. Some get brought out just every now and again. And some are simply admired.

Here’s the complete list of qualifications each knife on this year’s list must have met for inclusion:

1) I acquired it in 2023.

2) I liked it.

These are not listed in any sort of ranked order. They’re all simply my favorite knives for this year.

Huntsman – Edge Knife Works

Edge Knife Works is a shop I was introduced to by Jason Thoune at DLT Trading. Joshua Fisher is the man behind the brand and he’s absolutely a maker to watch. The Huntsman is a pocket-sized fixed blade, which is definitely my jam. The thing is, this is a pretty basic knife, when it comes to design. No frills, no bells and whistles, it is truly a working knife. It has garnered a lot of carry time this year.

Overall length: 7.25”
Blade length: 3.75”
Steel: Nitro V
Handle material: Natural Canvas Micarta
Weight: 2.82 oz
Find it here
MSRP: $230

Specter – Toor Knives

I’ll admit that I have a thing for daggers. I mean, there’s little practical use for them in my daily life, but they’re just so cool, y’know? The Specter was released not too long ago and I had to get one once I saw it. It fits my hand perfectly, and there’s a sense of solidity to it. It feels almost indestructible or something. I’m not a big fan of Kydex sheaths, but it makes perfect sense to go that route with this knife.

Overall length: 9.625”
Blade length: 4.75”
Steel: CPM 3V
Handle material: Ultem
Weight: 6.5 oz
Find it here
MSRP: $350

Alpha Guide Pro – Buck Knives

This is the third installment in Buck’s Alpha line, and easily my favorite of the bunch. It is a remarkably slim knife, with great hand feel. This is a knife that not only looks great, but was designed to put in some real work. The handle contours provide an excellent grip in any conditions, and the blade is quite slicey.

Overall length: 9.0”
Blade length: 4.375”
Steel: S35VN
Handle material: Richlite
Weight: 5.0 oz
Find it here
MSRP: $210

Water Moccasin – Bark River Knives

Slim, sleek, and ready for work is what comes to mind here. This was a collaboration between Dan Tope and Bark River Knives. The knife was designed by Dan as a tribute to a good friend, Matt Belz, who was well-known in the knife community. The Water Moccasin is small enough to pocket carry, but large enough to handle just about any routine knife chore.

Overall length: 7.75”
Blade length: 3.75”
Steel: MagnaCut
Handle material: Black Canvas Micarta
Weight: 2.93 oz
Find it here
MSRP: $248

Phoenix – D. Tope Knives

This is what I’d call a semi-custom knife. It is a model Dan Tope offers in his lineup, but there aren’t that many out there just yet. If I were to design a fixed blade belt knife, it would look an awful lot like the Phoenix, which is why I bugged Dan for months until he finally made one for me. The sheath was made by Skin Bender Leather Works. I truly love this blade, as it fits my hand perfectly.

Overall length: 8.75”
Blade length: 4.5”
Steel: CPM 154
Handle material: Natural Canvas Micarta
Weight: 3.9 oz
You’ll have to reach out to Dan directly to discuss ordering this model. Contact him here.
MSRP: Starting at $300

Sicarii – Bark River Knives Custom Shop

Jim Stewart runs the shop at Bark River Knives and also has a side hustle of sorts doing his own line of custom knives. The Sicarii is one of his flagship models. This is, hands down, one of the nicest knives I’ve ever owned, and is one that I will never part with. It is simply gorgeous. The lines are perfect, the edges razor-sharp.

Overall length: 11.0”
Blade length: 6.0”
Steel: CPM154
Handle material: Black Stacked Leather
Weight: 7.9 oz
Find it here
MSRP: $500

What were some of your favorite knives in 2023? Let us know in the comments!

1 Comment

  1. Every year I do a knife update. This year, it ended up being mostly hunting knives.

    Get well soon!

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