A less expensive line from Fontenille Pataud the ‘Laguiole Essential' has less file work on the traditional "Bee" which is welded rather than forged integrally with the spine. Nonetheless, the nice finish work and good mechanics of Fontenille Pataud is here.
The Laguiole knife has a distinctive design influenced by the Spanish Navaja. A smaller, more tactile version was made for the sheep-herders on the Aubrac plateau in France, and was named after the town Laguiole. In addition to the iconic ‘bee’ or ‘fly’ on the spring, typically they feature a semi yataghan shaped blade, a slip joint mechanism with a slim tapered handle made from natural material, traditionally cow horn.
The name and design of ‘Laguiole’ fell into public domain, and can legally be manufactured all over the world by anyone, so it is important to distinguish the different makers of the Laguiole style, as there are vast differences in quality of manufacture and material.
Fontenille Pataud is a small family business located in the beautiful Thiers, Auvergne region in France. Thiers is world famous for its manufacturing of knives and cutlery.
They are well known for their Laguiole style knives, but other regional styles including the Vendetta (from Corsica), Yssingeaux, Saint-Bernard, and Basque knives.