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She wants knives

Vintage Gent

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Mrs. Vintage Gent has asked for a decent set of knives for the Officially Sanctioned Winter Solstice Holiday. Our current set is a 15-year-old department store purchase--the kind with serrated edges. It does the job, but not by much.

So what to get? I cook only once or twice a week, so I'm almost completely clueless about such things.

(1) It has to be something I can purchase over the WebberNetz.
(2) It has to be something we can maintain easily; I'm not averse to honing a knife, but I'd prefer to do it as infrequently as possible.
(3) It has to be Not Too Costly. My wife likes to cook, but isn't by any means obsessed by the activity, so I'd prefer something of relatively modest price.
 

Thomas

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First option: Victorinox / Forschner. Check the restaurant supply stores first, then the on-line places. Sharp out of the box, inexpensive, not too precious so that you worry about breaking them. 8" chefs' knife should run $25 or so.

Second option: Tojiro DP Gyotou knives, or Togiharo Gyotou knives. Check Korin.com - these are a step up from the Forschners in performance and price. Wickedly sharp out of the box - lock these suckers up if you have small children. Japenese steel takes a bit more work to sharpen but holds an edge longer. 210 cm chef's knife runs $50-60 or so. You will need to baby these a bit to avoid discoloration - this means wash and dry right after using.

You can do nearly anything with an 8" chef's knife and a paring knife, but others are nice to have when you are doing heavy cooking and don't want to clean the knife after each use. Also, get a ceramic steel to keep the edge properly aligned.

Good luck!
 

Dakota rube

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Originally Posted by Vintage Gent
...Officially Sanctioned Winter Solstice Holiday...
You are a truly funny man.

As to your question: my ex has a set of Wustoff. Cost aside (I think she spent +$1000), they seem to be decent knives. Demonstrating my own fiscal realities, I recently "upgraded" to a pretty nice set by the can opener company, OXO.
 

DNW

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I highly recommend what I'm using now, a set of Henckels Professional S. A 10-piece set can be had for around $300, which I feel is quite reasonable.
 

hamish5178

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You might want to ask your wife if she really wants a set. I'd much rather have a single $130 Global than an equivalently priced 12 piece set, half of which won't be used.

I recommend Global over Henckels, I prefer the way they feel, and the entire knife is a single piece of metal (although Henckels may make some knives like that as well?).

edit: I have two Globals, a 7.5" Hollow Ground Santoku, and an 8.5" Serrated Bread Knife. I also have the OXO knife set which I purchased many years ago. Except for the paring knife it's still going strong!
 

MrDaniels

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Originally Posted by hamish5178
You might want to ask your wife if she really wants a set. I'd much rather have a single $130 Global than an equivalently priced 12 piece set, half of which won't be used.

+1

It's far better to mix and match...believe me, no professional chef has a matched set. Each manufacturer has some they do better than others.
 

goodlife

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I have a 12pc. set of Chicago Cuttelry that are 5 years old. Quality wise they are just a little behind Henckles and Wusthof, but I got a really good deal. Still I find that we only really use the Chef's Knife, bread knike (also great for tomatos), and the larger of the 2 paring knives (2.5 in. I believe. A couple times a year we also use the carving knife, but I would almost rather have a knife/server set for special occasions.

I understand you would rather order online, but I have recently seen a lot of Wusthof and Henckles at Marshalls and TJMax. I fact I am giving three Wusthof knives to my brother for the sanctioned solstice holiday.
 

Manton

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Forschner is the best cheap knife, period.

Of the ubiquitous Germans, I prefer Wusthof (sadly, I own Henkels).

For kick ass knives, Shun.
 

gdl203

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Renault78law

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Originally Posted by Thomas
First option: Victorinox / Forschner. Check the restaurant supply stores first, then the on-line places. Sharp out of the box, inexpensive, not too precious so that you worry about breaking them. 8" chefs' knife should run $25 or so.


Thomas and Manton are right, these are the best knives on the low end. Not giftable, however. I agree with the other posters that recommended against getting a set. Go with a Shun kitchen knife and a good paring knife, and you are good to go.
 

Thomas

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Originally Posted by Manton
Forschner is the best cheap knife, period.

Of the ubiquitous Germans, I prefer Wusthof (sadly, I own Henkels).

For kick ass knives, Shun.




Originally Posted by gdl203
3 words for you: Cutleryandmore.com. Clearance. Section

http://www.cutleryandmore.com/details.asp?SKU=2572

http://www.cutleryandmore.com/details.asp?SKU=1207


etc...


That santoku set is a steal. Good knife, too.

Originally Posted by Renault78law
Thomas and Manton are right, these are the best knives on the low end. Not giftable, however. I agree with the other posters that recommended against getting a set. Go with a Shun kitchen knife and a good paring knife, and you are good to go.

I was starting at the low end, but if the budget allows, I'd agree with Manton and Renault - go with Shun.
 

gdl203

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Originally Posted by Thomas
That santoku set is a steal. Good knife, too.
They also have tons of separate knives (not only sets) in the clearance section.

All the free stuff is also true - I was surprised to see free Wusthof sharpener, cheese knife and cutting board in the box when I ordered a Wusthof set at deep discount last year. No coupons or other BS hoops to jump through to get that stuff...
 

Manton

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Originally Posted by Renault78law
Thomas and Manton are right, these are the best knives on the low end. Not giftable, however. I agree with the other posters that recommended against getting a set. Go with a Shun kitchen knife and a good paring knife, and you are good to go.

Very important point. They are good workhorse knives but they look "cheap." The blades are really flexible (great for a filet knife, not so great for others), the steel is not that high quality, and the handles are a rather pedestrian molded plastic with a visible seam. A lady might be forgiven for thinking that hubby Scrooged her.

The Kraut knives, however, are lovely to look at and have real heft. Shuns are gorgeous.
 

Thomas

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Originally Posted by Manton
Very important point. They are good workhorse knives but they look "cheap." The blades are really flexible (great for a filet knife, not so great for others), the steel is not that high quality, and the handles are a rather pedestrian molded plastic with a visible seam. A lady might be forgiven for thinking that hubby Scrooged her.

The Kraut knives, however, are lovely to look at and have real heft. Shuns are gorgeous.


I was about to defend the Forschner series with the Rosewood handles, but...again the blade is flexible and the steel is good but not great. Also I hate the finish. Give me the brushed look every time - and at some point I'll address that with the current knives.

About heft - Mrs. Thomas goes straight to her santoku for its lightness. Not that she does a ton of chopping, but she's not the sort to easily muscle around a 8-inch Wusthof for long stretches. Just a thought.

But the Shuns...yeah, if the budget will cover Shun and Mrs. VG isn't accident-prone, I wouldn't think twice.
 

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