Hands down BEST chef knives.??

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horizonod
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Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby horizonod » Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:48 pm

If cost were not a factor what brand or model of chef knives are the very best??

If you could have a set of 3 what would they be??
“Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.”

HORIZON BLADEWORKS: http://www.nicnac.net . LOW KEY perveyor of HIGH TECH cutlery.

j.a.c.

Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby j.a.c. » Wed Feb 13, 2008 1:23 am

Went to cooking school and spent 10 -12 years in the business. Bought some top of the line knives back in the early 70's and still think the Dexter line made here in Mass were some of the best kitchen knives I ever used.
At the time you could get a set of knives ..lge chef ,med chef , boning knife , 17 inch pizza knife and a couple paring knives for around 8.00 per week rental with free sharpening service.

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natcherly
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby natcherly » Wed Feb 13, 2008 2:00 am

Dexter Russel does make a very good knife. They were selling a set of professional knives at Costco a few years back that was a super deal. About half of what a similar set goes for now. I didn't get one as I have a real hodge podge of cutlery at home, mostly inherited, mostly German, mostly carbon steel and mostly 80 - 100 years old. They work well for me...

If I was limited to 3 knives, I would have to say
Medium to large chef's knife (chop chop)
Boning knife (for that and other tasks)
Filleting knife (do like fish)

As to the best of the best, I wouldn't know where to start these days. There are some awesome ceramic and damascus knives out there, not to mention regular forged pieces.

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horizonod
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby horizonod » Wed Feb 13, 2008 8:59 pm

A supplier sent us these as a Christmas present.

Image

I think they say Shun on the blades. They are VERY VERY sharp but I haven't used them yet. I've seen Shun mentioned here so I'll take it they are good knives.

I got a set of Cold Steel kitchen knives last year and after using them for a year I'm not overly impressed.
“Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.”

HORIZON BLADEWORKS: http://www.nicnac.net . LOW KEY perveyor of HIGH TECH cutlery.

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Chuckyl
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby Chuckyl » Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:27 pm

I have a few Sabatier kitchen knives that I picked up in the 70's (at Filene's for us Massholes), carbon steel so they hold a decent edge, 'course they do look a little ugly. Sadly, their new stuff is crap, at least what I've been able to find so far. For me a boning knife, 8" chefs knife, a small paring and a carving knife get most jobs done. My daughter gave me an 8" Wusthof Sudoku knife that's not too shabby but I still prefer the Sabatier.

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Guitars and Blades
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby Guitars and Blades » Thu Feb 14, 2008 3:21 am

I've got a few Sabatier knives at home. Their high end stuff isn't bad, but to me Henckels high end stuff is the best bang for the buck if you're buying a set. If you're buying knives separately, I'd say Furi for a full blade Chef knife (great ergonomics, beautiful balance, holds an edge).
Again, for a carving, boning, filleting, utility knife, any of the high end German knives are just flawless. Good high Carbon blades, great balance, excellent construction. Keep 'em sharp with a 17 degree edge and you could cut through a Sherman tank with one.
By the way, Nick. Are those Shuns damascus blades? They look really nice.

G&B 8)
Steel strings and steel springs...what could be better?

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horizonod
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby horizonod » Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:01 pm

Guitars and Blades wrote:By the way, Nick. Are those Shuns damascus blades? They look really nice.

G&B 8)


They look to be damascus and they'll shave your arm if you just stand close to them. Haven't used them yet. Maybe for a special occassion when I have time to clean them myself. My kids just don't understand "DON'T PUT MY DAMN GOOD KNIVES IN THE F%^%$ING DISHWASHER!!!" no matter how loud I say it. :evil: :mrgreen:

So you think high end German are superior to Japanese??
“Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.”

HORIZON BLADEWORKS: http://www.nicnac.net . LOW KEY perveyor of HIGH TECH cutlery.

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Guitars and Blades
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby Guitars and Blades » Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:34 pm

Well. I've got to say that none of my Germans are less than 20 yrs. old, Nick. I'm not too familiar with much of the Japanese stuff. I stopped cooking professionally almost 18 yrs. ago, so I'm not really as informed on kitchen stuff as I was at one time.
I believe my Furii is Australian made, and it has a high carbon content, really holds an edge beautifully and feels fantastic in the hand. You can tell a really good kitchen knife the moment you pick it up, it just feels like it belongs in your hand.
Go to Futii's web site and check them out. http://www.furitechnics.com
There's a video of Rahael pushing the knives and sharpeners. I have the one the engineers show in the video. It's all one piece from butt to tip and it's a fanatastic knife. Too bad the price has jumped so high since Rachael Rae started endorsing them, but they're definitely worth the investment.

Gary
Steel strings and steel springs...what could be better?

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horizonod
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby horizonod » Sat Feb 23, 2008 12:52 am

:( :oops: :( :oops: 8) :oops: Do they come with a little snippette of Racheals panties?? :o :twisted: :mrgreen: :roll: :wink:

I asked because of my confussion and it sounds like everybody else shares my questions.

German quality used to be fairly unquestioned as the best. Then economics is applied and quality is sacrificed for the $$ over time. There are some outstanding French companies as well but it seems lately the Japanese are the ones that are held in highest esteem.

There has to be a company out there that says "to hell with the cost of production. People who know the best and want the best will pay for the best". Unfortunately price doesn't denote quality. :|
“Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.”

HORIZON BLADEWORKS: http://www.nicnac.net . LOW KEY perveyor of HIGH TECH cutlery.

roran1234
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby roran1234 » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:10 pm

Hattori

jdthompson
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby jdthompson » Tue Dec 23, 2008 7:47 pm

Shun is my vote. oooohhh soooo sharp!

GoingGlobal
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby GoingGlobal » Thu Feb 05, 2009 2:37 am

Hey there..
Good question. It is a very personal choice, and I've found it can vary from knife to knife within the same brand. I had great success with one Henckels knife, then I got a different model and to me, it was much worse. I've also tried the Forschner Victorinox 8" fibrox handle that Cooks Illustrated recommends - and, to be honest, it did not suit me too much. Right now I have a pretty good Furi, but I'm trying to decide between a Shun and a Global... the Ken Onion knives make my mouth water..... :)

What I recommend is paying a visit to a cooking store - in the states we have Williams Sonoma. Ask them to see the knives, and hold them in your hands...that is the only way to determine the best chef knife.

FattyMcAss
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Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby FattyMcAss » Thu Feb 26, 2009 2:15 am

Depends on what you are going to use them for. I am assuming that you want a Chef knife. Here is my experience with knives. There is no doubt that the japanese brands(i.e. Shun, Kasumi, Hattori, Misono, Nenox etc) are the sharpest knives out there. There are some cons as well. They have signaficantly harder blades than the german(i.e. Wustof, F Dick, Henckel, Messermeister etc.) they do hold there edge longer, but they are harder steel, hence harder to sharpen. They are also more likely to chip if abused. I own a chef knife from: Shun, Misono, Kasumi, Henckel(Pro-s & 5 Star), Wustof(Classic & Grand Prix II), Mercer Genesis(very good knife at half the price of the other german forged), and Messermeister Meredian Elite(My all around favorite of the bunch...hence my reccomendation). The slightly softer German steel does lose its edge quicker than the Japanese knifes, but comes right back with a good steel. Also much easier to sharpen on stones. If I had to pick 3 knives and a brand, I would say Messermeister(Meridian elite or San Mortiz; only difference is the handle material). They are awesome at around the same price as the Henckels/Wustofs. Little less known, but I think the quality is drastically better. They are a somewhat merge of German and Japanese styles. They are bolsterless with a slighty thinner blade than typical German knives. They use GOOD steel, and I can tell they are sharper that my wustofs and Henckles. They claim to sharpen there blades at a 15 degree angle instead of the 18-20 of other german knife makers, and higher than the 12-13 of the japanese knives. In my opinion, they are a nice blend of of japanese and German. Not the Sharpest, but close...Not the softest or hardest, Not REALLY german traditional style, but not japanese either. Just an all around Great knife. Try an 8-10"Chef(Slicing, Dicing, Chopping etc), 9"bread(Bread of course, but also great for fruit, and tough skinned vegetables), 3.5" paring(All small tasks-especially on the line), and don't forget the honing steel. I wouldn't buy a good boning/Filet knife. Get a cheap Forschner. I have never used a good knife to French Lamb...Can't figure out the point of running an expensive knife blade accross bones. I guarentee that if you have to work a carving station, someone in your kitchen will lend you a decent carving knife. Utility knives are nice, but everything can be accomplised with either the chef or parring. Santokus and Usuba style knives are also nice, but they ar just an alternative to a chef knife. Good luck, hope this helps you.

The Tourist

Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby The Tourist » Thu Mar 26, 2009 3:45 pm

Despite your idea that cost not be a factor, you have asked two questions.

When we say "chef," most of us think of a trained, working professional in an upscale restaurant. A "food celebrity."

(And we don't even consider a person who might be the best cook in his family neighborhood or church.)

But I've found that a chef in a four-star establishment and a "kitchen manager" in a more average restaurant want two very different things from knives. In fact, the knives a chef might use are totally different from what the rank and file utilize.

When I went out on first big, real-deal sharpening job at a four-star, I expected find people who loved knives as much as I do. When I asked which knives needed sharpening, I was told, "The ones in the sink."

Sure enough, there amid plates, glasses and spoons, at the bottom of a stainless sink were a pile of knives, including a very nice sashimi. To that restaurant, a knife was a "tool."

Keeping that in mind, if the head chef enjoyed premium cutlery, took care of his collection, and perhaps was the only one to do so, I would recommend the Hattori line. That would be the HD series for most of his needs, and a KD gyuto or santuko for more precise work, like his signature special dish.

For sous-chefs with knife skills learned in culinary schools you cannot beat the Tojiro line.

For general kitchen use I would select knives by construction, not by name brand. These knives will be banged around, constantly wet and drenched in sauces and gravy. I would choose a product line with durable handles and blade steel with a higher chromium content to avoid corrosion.

(I own a Hattori HD series Petty and a Tojiro Gyuto. I sold off my two Tojiro Nakiri to clients, and I hope to replace one for personal use very soon.)

j.a.c.

Re: Hands down BEST chef knives.??

Postby j.a.c. » Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:08 pm

I went to cooking school back in the 70's and spent 10 years in the business.
The very first thing that they taught us was never put a knife in the sink.
Not because they cared about the knives ,but to prevent dishwashers and other employees
from reaching in and slicing open an arm.
If the cook doesn't have time to wipe or rinse the knife ,it should be left on a counter and
the dishwasher should be told.
I've fired people for tossing them in the sink. Very dangerous and just plain foolish.


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