Quintin Middleton is the jovial artisan behind the beautiful, bespoke, hand-made chefs knives at Middleton Made Knives in the small rural South Carolina town of Saint Stephen, just 49 miles north of historic Charleston. Since 2010, Middleton has earned a reputation as the South's premier culinary bladesmith, hand-making high carbon steel knives for many of the nation's top chefs including Sean Brock, Michael Anthony, Mike Lata and others.
After a young Quintin Middleton watched Conan The Barbarian for the first time - he was hooked on making knives. With a passion now ignited, the young boy would take down his mother's shower rod and other household items and beat them into knife handles. It wasn't until Middleton was seventeen-years-old that he began to take knife making seriously after a chance encounter with legendary bladesmith and fellow South Carolinian Jason Knight. For the next six years, Knight tested his young apprentice in his shop, teaching his protégé how to make hunting knives, swords and fantasy-style weapons - the kinds of collectibles that Knight is known for.
Years later, Middleton, a very religious man, made the switch to making culinary knives after the Holy Spirit told him to do so. He began calling on Charleston's top chefs, telling them he'd craft custom knives for them. A skeptical Craig Deihl, then executive chef at Cyprus, was the only chef to bite on the offer, letting Middleton come into the restaurant's kitchen to watch how the chefs use different knives for different tasks. With this new knowledge, Middleton would drive back to Saint Stephen, a predominately African American town of less than 2,000 people, and get to work grinding the bevel and buffing the handle on new chefs knives.
In 2010, Middleton Made Knives was officially born. "I built this company on Faith and a Dream," Quintin Middleton says.