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Beginner's Gyuto

Mon Jan 20, 2014 12:01 pm

Good Morning Everyone,

I am new to this site, this forum, and to the world of kitchen knives all together. I am still relatively an amateur cook (at home), but always want to keep getting better. I am looking to make my first gyuto/chef knife purchase, and would perhaps like some recommendations. I don't need anything over the top amazing, but would like something that will last me a long time. I have been browsing and researching for days, and now just keep finding more and more options and I think I'm getting further away from goal. After all my browsing and online searching, I believe I have narrowed it down what I want based on aesthetics and reviews. Right now I'm leaning this ways...

#1 Global g-2 8 in.
#2Tojiro DP 210 mm
#3 Richmond artifex 210 mm
#4 Shun classic 8 in.
#5 Mac Mighty Chef 8 in w/dimples

1. Are you right handed? - Yes
2. What type of knife are you interested in (gyuto, nakiri etc..) - Gyuto/Chef's Knife
3. What size knife are you looking for? - 210 mm, I live in a small apartment with very, very minimal counter space.
4. Do you prefer carbon or stainless steel? - Stainless, while I know the importance of knife care now after researching, I have a small child and know with certainty the knife will be left wet or on the board more than once.
5. Do you prefer a western handle or a Japanese handle? - Not sure, Never really held either.
6. How much did you want to spend? - right around $100, preferably less, but willing to go a little higher, if people think the shun or mac are significantly better than the others.
7. Do you know how to sharpen? - No, but I'm attempting to learn online without really being able to practice.

I don't know if I would want a harder steel or softer steel, how a not 50/50 bevel would affect me, or much of anything else, like I said, still new and learning.

I've seen many similar posts along this line, including many of the same knives, but just hoping someone will push me in to the right choice.

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Mon Jan 20, 2014 12:10 pm

JOHN DOE <> Global is GARBAGE. Wipe it out of your head. The only reason they are on the site is because of the familiarity the public has with it.

The MAC is a good entry-level workhorse, but do you wanna shell out that premium? I wouldn't.

The Shun has great overall F&F & they are easy to maintain IMO, but they regularly chip & you aren't adept at sharpening, yet.

Without suggesting anything new, I'd say the Artifex & the Tojiro are most appropriate for you. Look very close at their handles. The Artifex is going to give you a better steel at the expense of handle F&F, the Tojiro will have better F&F but not as premier a steel. Honestly, I lean towards the slightly softer steel Tojiro for you.

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Mon Jan 20, 2014 1:13 pm

I started with a Mac Superior santoku and a Tojiro DP 240mm gyuto. I also own the Artifex. The Mac I leave around for guests to use, it just doesn't do it for me anymore. The Tojiro still gets used, only sidelined because I have so many knives now. The Artifex gets used somewhat more frequently, but only after a good about of time on the sharpening stones, out of the box I did not care for it as much as my Tojiro.

So all that said, get the Tojiro DP.

You may want to see if you can come up with some room in the budget for a stone or two. A 1k/5k progression is a typical beginner setup, in a bind a 2k stone is enough to keep a knife factory sharp at home. It will also let you start getting hands on experience.

Good luck!

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Mon Jan 20, 2014 1:25 pm

The Tojiro Dp is a good starting point. Same steel as the Shuns (VG10) but they don't have near the level of fit and finish. Of course they also don't have the price premium either. lol Expect the handles to be serviceable and give you something to hold on to, but don't expect them to be perfect. Out of the box they cut very well, and at their price point that is what matters most... in my opinion anyway. lol

Another one that usually gets suggested along with the Tojiro DP is the Fujiwara FKM series: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/fufkmgy21.html

A little thinner than the Tojiro so it probably cuts better. I dunno if the f&f is any better but it is still a good knife for the same money as the Tojiro DP.

If you are wanting to learn how to sharpen and see how the results of your efforts improve the knife, get the Artifex. Not quite the cutter the Tojiro DP and Fujiwara FKM are out of the box (or so I've read lol) but it has the greatest potential thanks to the steel used. Even so, it should still run circles around a lot of western knives out of the box it's just when comparing it to another Japanese knife you'll notice the difference.

Now I will post a couple of new suggestions, trying to keep around $100 or so for a stainless 210mm gyuto. I'm mentioning these as they looked like nice options when I ordered my first knife, and I still think that they would be nice knives for the money. I don't own either of these, so I'll have to rely on someone that knows about them to approve or shoot down the recommendations. lol ;)

First is the Kaneshige stainless wa handled gyuto: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kastwagy210.html

From the steel's description it sounds like it will be similar to the FKM and DP mentioned above, however it looks like it has a much better fit and finish. Plus it is just a nice looking knife. lol Also at its level of hardness you should not have to worry about chips as much as you would with something above 60.

Second is the Suisin Inox gyuto: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/suisingyuto2.html

Suisin makes some good stuff, and this one looks like it would be a very nice performer for the money. Fit and finish should be pretty good and the handle looks pretty awesome as well.

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:26 pm

I went back and forth over this decision about two years ago when I was starting my collection, I decided to get the Richmond Artifex 210 mm and then the Tojiro bread knife (I also got Fujiwara 150 mm petty). I haven't regretted getting the Artifex, although it did take me time to adjust to it; and I have even grown to love it so much that I gifted it to my Dad who is a lefty that lives in a left/right household. While I am comparing apples to oranges of a 210 mm gyoto vs a bread knife, I can tell you that the handle on the Artifex just feels more substantial in my hand than on the Tojiro. The steel feels stronger. It just looks and feels like it is a better made knife in my hand. I have no experience with the other knives, but I just wanted to say that you won't regret it if you decide on the Artifex.

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Tue Jan 21, 2014 10:39 pm


I think you and I have all the same knives :). That said, the Tojiro DP gyuto and Tojiro ITK bread knife are not very similar. I agree the Tojiro ITK bread knife is flimsier than the Artifex, but the Tojiro DP is every bit as stout as the Artifex.

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Fri Jan 24, 2014 11:40 am

Attention to detail...my downfall every time. Thanks for the correction, cedarhouse.

Did you decide on a knife, jtapner?

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:26 pm

Two excellent knives to fit your needs. I feel better than those in your list. JMO
Kaneshige Stainless Wa Gyuto 210 : http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kastwagy210.html
Tanaka Ginsan 210mm Gyuto : http://www.chefknivestogo.com/tagi21gy.html

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Fri Jan 24, 2014 5:22 pm

I have not yet decided on a knife I think now it rests between the tojiro and kanashige and some stones. Of course I happened to lose my job so for now ill just have to look at them online until I can make the purchase. Had anyone used the kanashige and would recommend?

Re: Beginner's Gyuto

Fri Jan 24, 2014 5:45 pm

Wow, sorry to hear that. I wish you luck getting back on your feet receiving an income again. ;)
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