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Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 5:00 am

I'm looking to buy a complete set of knives and sharpening equipment. It should be able to perform well at all the tasks a home cook will encounter, while not necessarily being as task specific as a honesuki.

1. Are you right handed?
2. What type of knife are you interested in (gyuto, nakiri etc..)
Gyuto, petty and bread, plus maybe a santoku or something else that pops up and seems exciting.
3. What size knife are you looking for?
240 mm for the gyuto.
4. Do you prefer carbon or stainless steel?
Stainless or something in between.
5. Do you prefer a western handle or a Japanese handle?
Have no experience with the Japanese style, so not really sure.
6. How much did you want to spend?
What is necessary to get me knives for many years. Around $ 200 for the gyuto.
7. Do you know how to sharpen?
I have used a Lansky set and the "mouse pad and sandpaper"-method for convex edges. Want to learn free hand and whetstones.

The set I am looking at now would be

Kikuichi Performance TKC 240mm Gyuto - Main workhorse
Tojiro 270mm ITK Bread Knife - Looks like the go to bread knife
Richmond Artifex Santoku 190mm - My current santoku gets used quite often and AEBL seems interesting
Victorinox Fibrox 10" Chef's Knife - Frozen food and other hard things
Richmond Artifex 150mm Utility- Seems cheap for the steel
Victorinox Kitchen Shears - Well, I need shears as well
A paring knife maybe? Have the small Victorinox already, but it's a bit flimsy.

Knife Sharpening Complete 8pc Set
3" x 8" Balsa Strop
Boron Carbide Paste 1 Micron
Plus a piece of leather?
OR (as Melampus suggested in another thread)
Rika, Latte and Ume stone set
Strop Set With Universal Holder Base and Plate
Boron Carbide Paste 1 Micron

Any advice on the sharpening sets? Any vital elements missing (except cutting board)?

Looks like I will be spending around $ 700 in total with this line up.

As a bonus question, is it correctly understood that honing with the boron carbide paste will replace steeling the knives? I'm currently using a ceramic rod.

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 6:07 am

i'd get a better set of shears like the tojiro or the richmond shears. =D

i'm pretty good with using regular chef knives when cutting bread. but that's just me.

i would get a 240-270mm chef knife, like maybe the tojiro dp 240mm gyuto.

then a paring knife. a shun classic is one of the best out there and easily found anywhere.

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:31 am

Try something a little more fun than my Santoku.

Here are 2 good ones I like that I think you would really like. Both are stainless clad. They're both more but if you use a santoku a lot I think these would be more enjoyable.

Goko: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/gosa16.html

Kohetsu: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/koaosusa18.html

For a good paring knife there are a bunch of options. This little Mac is a good one:

My little paring knife is a good one for the money:

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:38 am

The Shun Classic paring knife is still one of my favorites:


I like Mel's suggested stone's better....but both are great sets. I also like my balsa strop when I do use a strop.

Bonus question....yes!

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:41 am

Yea I like the shun parer as well. Nice handle and usually good fit and finish on them.

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:59 am

Mark, what about the new Shun Sora 3.5" parer? What do you think of it?

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 10:51 am

If you can overlook the plastic handle the blade is very nice.

The gyuto is currently the best deal on the site. I have no idea how they can do this knife for $79.95.

Re: Advice on a complete set for a home cook

Mon Sep 23, 2013 12:34 pm

TESLA <> I want to commend your attention to detail. Awesome post. ;)

I glean from your post that you are already pretty clear on my opinions so all I will add here is that although I have yet to buy one... the Kohetsu Santoku that Mark refers to is the most exciting Santoku profile I have ever seen. I have to default to - which I trust inherently - Shaun's, Tim's & Adam's opinions of the heat treats/grinds/F&F, and from their consensus and my opinion of the profile... that is one badass little knife that I'm really looking forward to buying for residential use. I buy my year's knives from November to May, and I'm getting excited with this year's menu.
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