3

votes

Hack my future knife purchase

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 16, 2011 at 11:17 PM

I'm going to start buying higher end knives for my kitchen. But the Internet isn't as helpful on this topic as I expected it to be. Surely there must be several PHers with serious knife knowledge, experience, advice, opinions, etc, regarding types, brands, and so on...

In a question: Which knives should I buy?

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 18, 2011
at 03:44 PM

bob - so you are saying that the rust that can appear as a result of letting the knives air dry is not actually the knife itself... but rather the deposits ON the knife from the water? If that's true then does that mean that the rust can NEVER actually penetrate the metal? Let's say we leave them there for 17 months, rusting, righ there on the counter. If I take a metal cleaner to it, there will be no rust actually damaging the steel knife blade?

A2cf19fd438ae7b69ac09792efed8c33

(160)

on August 18, 2011
at 01:13 PM

your sink uses the same hard water as the dishwasher. don't air dry them. wipe them with a towel after rinsing.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:46 PM

Hey Eric, I see you are in Chicago. I actually took a knife skills class at The Chopping Block that was useful and a ton of fun. We had a bunch of different knives to try out, so you could see what works for you. They absolutely did not try to sell us anything, it was a really well done class.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:45 PM

Hey Eric, I see you are in Chicago. I actually took a knife skills class at The Chopping Block that was useful and a ton of fun. We had a bunch of different knives to try out, so you could see what works for you. The absolutely did not try to sell us anything, it was a really well done class.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:34 PM

bob - what you say makes sense, but even just using hot water from the sink only and not drying them thoroughly makes them rust. Seems like 'stainless steel' should be exactly that, but it hasn't been my experience.

A2cf19fd438ae7b69ac09792efed8c33

(160)

on August 17, 2011
at 06:35 PM

It is physically impossible for stainless steel to rust. Because you live in a hard water area your dishwasher will dry leaving deposits which rust. You can use a softener or scrape them off, but then you are just doing all the work of washing by hand anyway! The real reason you don't put knives in the dishwasher is because the water jets will dull the blade very quickly.

2bdc990a200584a385650cf68475f095

on August 17, 2011
at 09:30 AM

http://paleohacks.com/questions/58443/knives-for-cutting-meats-and-other-things#axzz1VE5Ec6TB

44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on August 17, 2011
at 08:17 AM

Or if you dont want to spend that much, buy 8" Victorinox Forschner chefs knife. Its alot of knife for most uses. The blade is just thicker and little clumsier than nimble japanese blade. It doesnt hold a lazer sharp edge very long.

44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on August 17, 2011
at 08:14 AM

They will get dull, and you cant sharpen them, disposable. And blades are thick and limited in selection, i would avoid them.

44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on August 17, 2011
at 08:13 AM

I recommend this one: http://japanesechefsknife.com/KAGAYAKICarboNextSeries.html 240mm gyuto. You will not find a better blade for that money. Its thin, and holds an edge even in professional use quite long. One of the best places to learn about good kitchen knives and sharpening is: http://www.foodieforums.com/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?6-Fred-s-Cutlery-Forum And one good medium grit stone to learn how to sharpen: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/bester1200.html You can do much worse than these. and for better you need to put many hundreds more.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 17, 2011
at 02:32 AM

i love my wusthof knives, too. dont forget to check out a restaurant supply tore if there is one near you. i got GREAT deals there.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 17, 2011
at 12:18 AM

+1 for knives are like pants you gotta try them on. I got a pricey set (so pricey I'm actually ashamed) of which I use ONE consistently for everything....serious waste.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 17, 2011
at 12:18 AM

+1 for knives are like pants you gotta try them on. I got a pricey set (so pricey I'm actually ashamed) of which I use ONE consistently for everything....serious waste.

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11 Answers

8
741862d51f4709ea726113db7926576f

(605)

on August 17, 2011
at 12:03 AM

Hey Eric: in a word, the best knife is the sharp knife that you like best in your hand. It's like trying on a pair of pants - they might look good online, but you will only know if you like them and suit you well if you go try them on.

If you're in any moderately sized city, go to a local cooking store (Williams-Sonoma, Sur La Table) even a Macys, and ask to feel the knives in your hand. Don't buy a whole block of knives - you don't need that. A basic 8 or 10 inch chef's knife is perfect.

Me? I like Shun knives, and how they feel in my hand. Husband like Wustof. I cannot STAND Global knives, as they feel so lightweight and like I might break them. We also have some Henckels and other knives that we use for "traveling."

If you can get to any of those stores to actually try chopping something, definitely do! Williams-Sonoma often has cutting boards and veggies set out for you try chopping.

If you don't have any experience with knives, you might look into a basic knife skills class too.

Hit me up at Paleo Comfort Foods if you have more questions.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 17, 2011
at 02:32 AM

i love my wusthof knives, too. dont forget to check out a restaurant supply tore if there is one near you. i got GREAT deals there.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 17, 2011
at 12:18 AM

+1 for knives are like pants you gotta try them on. I got a pricey set (so pricey I'm actually ashamed) of which I use ONE consistently for everything....serious waste.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:45 PM

Hey Eric, I see you are in Chicago. I actually took a knife skills class at The Chopping Block that was useful and a ton of fun. We had a bunch of different knives to try out, so you could see what works for you. The absolutely did not try to sell us anything, it was a really well done class.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:46 PM

Hey Eric, I see you are in Chicago. I actually took a knife skills class at The Chopping Block that was useful and a ton of fun. We had a bunch of different knives to try out, so you could see what works for you. They absolutely did not try to sell us anything, it was a really well done class.

2
56a6d176412bd576202b6d945310e258

on August 17, 2011
at 01:43 AM

you can find german or japanese forged steel in the $50 range. As important as knives are, sharpening and cutting boards are just as important.

good eats knife episode covers lots on knife selection, care, and handling.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9Qzz8R_J1c

2
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on August 17, 2011
at 12:50 AM

Hey Eric! This was recently asked so I thought to recycle my answer and share it with you as I think it fits perfectly! Here you go and have fun:

Oo, such fun! I love shopping for new steel! You actually don't need much.. it's one of those "less is more" kind of deals. A chef knife. A paring knife. I totally admit that my tomato knife was the best purchase ever and I can slice through soft fruit beautifully.

I'm very advanced in the kitchen and use daily the three knives that I listed - an 8" chef, my 3.5" paring and ye auld serrated tomato knife, and a boning knife that comes out on occasion. I'm not going to give you the brand that I have as every knife is different and brand doesn't matter. You need to go in and hold the knives, if you are in a good shoppe they will have cutting boards and veg/fruit for you to test. For me, the most important factors for my chef knife were and are: it must be forged, the weight, did the knife "rock" the way I wanted when chopping/mincing, can I easily butcher a chicken, and was the bolster comfortable when resting my fingers against it. It HAS to feel good in your hand. This is something you will be using every day so don't look at price tags - there are excellent light knives, stay away from ceramic please they're fragile and can shatter, that are in the $40 range. Wonderful forged in the $100. Of course you can go up in price but I promise, price and brand does not always mean awesome.

Go have fun and play, choose what you think is best for you - just don't cut yourself :)

Oh! And a steel is nice if you want to sharpen your own, I take mine in and have them done by friends.

1
D9032e4f6540f9e6bcbb07143002bedd

(449)

on August 17, 2011
at 03:27 AM

Here's a question I'm actually qualified to answer! First and foremost you need a good chef's knife. You can carve a turkey with it, you can mince garlic with it, you can ward off a burglar with it. Go to Sur Le Table, or the place the chefs in your area shop (look online for restaurant supply), or failing that Macy's, and find a good 8 inch chef knife that fits your hand.

Second get yourself a good paring knife, and possibly a a smaller chef's knife for times when you don;t need the big gun or it has beef liver all over it and you want to slice some artichokes.

I like Global knives. They take a blade well, they fit my hand, they are light enough for repetitive tasks but can crank through chicken bones all day long and can get the silver skin off a tenderloin if you know what you doing. Skimp on the paring knife, the steak knives, the butter knives and the cutting boards, but make sure you invest in a great chef's knife. Call me a skeptic but you won't find a good one for less than $80.

1
61af09414341715d110f08b7505fe114

on August 17, 2011
at 02:27 AM

Alright - I have been a knife snob for years. My story:

I got into cooking when I was in college by watching the Food Network. I wanted to be a chef. I bought a Henckel 8 inch Chef's knife from eBay for a good price while still in school. It was good. It served me for well for a few years, and I still have it.

Then, after working for a few years, I felt I needed a whole knife set, so I bought a Henckel knife set - like 7 other knives. I thought they were awesome.

However, as I started to cook more and more and get better at it and watch programs like "Cook's illustrated", I realized that the expensive knives I bought were not as awesome as I thought. They were tough to keep sharp, and chopping with them were not that easy.

I bought the $30 chef's knife that Cook Illustrated recommended - The Victorinox 8 inch Chef's knife. It was awesome. It was thin, and it kept an edge. I never was able to slice and dice as well as I could with that one. And - it was much, much cheaper than my expensive knives.

So, I would recommend against a set. Get the Victorinox chef's knife and their $5 paring knife. They are cheaply priced, but great quality.

http://www.swissarmy.com/Cutlery/Pages/Product.aspx?category=fibrox++handle+knives&product=47520&

http://www.swissarmy.com/Cutlery/Pages/Product.aspx?category=poly+handle&product=47600&

1
Cab7e4ef73c5d7d7a77e1c3d7f5773a1

(7304)

on August 16, 2011
at 11:57 PM

I love my kyocera knives. They're made of ceramic so they don't dull and you never have to sharpen them. They cut very well. Actually one day we couldn't open a box with scissors or a regular knife, but the kyocera did a good job of opening it. They're great knives.

The only thing to be careful of is that they will break if you accidentally smash one like my mom did. The tip fell off, but it still works well. I also have two others.

44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on August 17, 2011
at 08:14 AM

They will get dull, and you cant sharpen them, disposable. And blades are thick and limited in selection, i would avoid them.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 17, 2011
at 12:18 AM

+1 for knives are like pants you gotta try them on. I got a pricey set (so pricey I'm actually ashamed) of which I use ONE consistently for everything....serious waste.

0
A2cf19fd438ae7b69ac09792efed8c33

(160)

on August 17, 2011
at 06:45 PM

You'll want knives that are made of one single piece of metal. The metal for the knife should go all the way back to the end of the handle. If the handle is a seperate piece from the knife, it should be connected to the "full-tang" (that's the part of the metal goes to the end of the handle) by at least 3 rivets. This will be a durable, long-lasting knife.

The grip on the handle should be secure even when wet. The knife should balance almost on the forefinger of your grip. This will be a comfortable and ejoyable knife to use.

The edge of the blade should be smooth and easy to sharpen. Even a cheap sharpener will do wonders for keeping the kife in proper working order.

0
B4e1fa6a8cf43d2b69d97a99dfca262c

(10255)

on August 17, 2011
at 10:44 AM

i love my 20 year old Henckel 5 star 10 inch chef's knife. i also have a 4 star 6 inch and a couple of 3 stars in the lesser used styles. i think the 5 star cost as much as the other three combined, but worth every penny.

0
97c04f87a752ff0a5cf6be9d806c0334

(888)

on August 17, 2011
at 04:18 AM

No need for a fancy expensive knife. All you need is a Chinese cleaver/chef's knife. Looks like a cleaver but its incredibly versatile and can be easily sharpened. Can get it at a local Asian grocer for less than $20!

0
F6ea948ab43dc51d72509c0989e670fe

(1639)

on August 17, 2011
at 04:09 AM

I actually just answered a question like that...and it all depends on what your budget is.

If you're willing to pay the money, nothing is quite like a Shun. They're expensive, but I threw out all of my other knives after using them. I have an offset bread knife (because serrated knives are cool), a 10'' chef knife, and a paring knife.

If you want to spend a bit less money, grab a Victorinox Forschner Chef knife and a small serrated paring knife as well. The whole kit'll cost you less than $50 and a do a good job. My brother didn't want to drop the cash on the Shun, so that's what he has and he loves them.

0
Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 17, 2011
at 04:06 AM

We bought all the top brand names like Henkel and stuff like that and were not pleased with any of them so we returned them all (like 4 sets that we tried all within a 3 week period). Then, at the Del Mar Fair, we got sucked into the "Miracle Blade" knife presentation. It used to be called Ginsu but they changed the name. They need no sharpening, and they all cut very well. Plus that main 'bread' knife is insane. You can literally cut through solid iron with it and it doesn't ruin the blade. Good grief. Listen to me. I sound like a sales commercial for these guys. But... like ANY quality knife set, you cannot wash them in the dishwasher because of the steam. They will rust, which I still don't understand. What's the point of them being "stainless steel". You have to hand wash and hand dry each one. I've never understood that.

It's on the site for $39?? wtf?

http://www.miracleblade.com/

The guy at the fair said we were getting a super special sale at $59. The only thing different is that we got 8 steak knives instead of 4, but we didn't get silverware either. Now I feel like I got ripped off.

Anyway, we've had ours for over 2 years now and we LOVE the whole set!

A2cf19fd438ae7b69ac09792efed8c33

(160)

on August 17, 2011
at 06:35 PM

It is physically impossible for stainless steel to rust. Because you live in a hard water area your dishwasher will dry leaving deposits which rust. You can use a softener or scrape them off, but then you are just doing all the work of washing by hand anyway! The real reason you don't put knives in the dishwasher is because the water jets will dull the blade very quickly.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 17, 2011
at 07:34 PM

bob - what you say makes sense, but even just using hot water from the sink only and not drying them thoroughly makes them rust. Seems like 'stainless steel' should be exactly that, but it hasn't been my experience.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 18, 2011
at 03:44 PM

bob - so you are saying that the rust that can appear as a result of letting the knives air dry is not actually the knife itself... but rather the deposits ON the knife from the water? If that's true then does that mean that the rust can NEVER actually penetrate the metal? Let's say we leave them there for 17 months, rusting, righ there on the counter. If I take a metal cleaner to it, there will be no rust actually damaging the steel knife blade?

A2cf19fd438ae7b69ac09792efed8c33

(160)

on August 18, 2011
at 01:13 PM

your sink uses the same hard water as the dishwasher. don't air dry them. wipe them with a towel after rinsing.

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