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Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Sun Sep 15, 2013 8:08 pm


I have watched enough youtube videos and have perused the interwebs enough that I am ready to make my first purchase of japanese knives. I am open to recommendations on brand and types.

For Brands, I have demoed some knives at SLT and my wife and I liked the Miyabi evolution and the Shun classics, but feel they are overpriced. I don't want to pay for marketing support, just a high quality knife that slices and cuts well. I am leaning towards the Tojiro DP product because of value.

I am a home chef. Here in Arizona I do a lot of grilling and smoking meat and veggies year around. I know I would like a chef knife or gyoto and a paring knife. Any other knives I should consider? I am thinking of getting the tojiro ITK bread knife as well. How many knives should we get?
1. Are you right handed? Right
2. What type of knife are you interested in (gyuto, nakiri etc..) Gyoto/Chef, paring, maybe bread? open to suggestions
3. What size knife are you looking for? 210
4. Do you prefer carbon or stainless steel? SS because of the lower maintnenance and it's my first japanese knife
5. Do you prefer a western handle or a Japanese handle? Probably western but I also like the wa handles (I use a pinch grip, so most handles accomadate that well
6. How much did you want to spend? Under $300, but open to suggestions
7. Do you know how to sharpen? Not Yet, but I will eventually learn


Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:49 am

I don't feel you can go wrong with your choice of the Tojiro DP line of knives. I purchased their bread knife and paring knives for my school kit. I haven't used the paring knives yet but the bread knife is a dream. I believe the Tojiro and the Shun classic are the same VG10 SS so the cutting performance should be about on par. For your price range for your three knives I feel the Tojiro would be the best fit, you may even have room in your budget for a 1k grit stone for sharpening/learning to sharpen. Just my 2c.

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Mon Sep 16, 2013 11:03 am

First thanks so much for using the form. It's makes my life SOOO much easier to give intelligent/informed recommendations.

I own this knife and I think it fits you perfectly: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/hachkn8.html

The edge will wow you out of the box and it's an attractive knife. The Tojiro is a good starter blade but you get better grinds and nice looks with this one. It's more money but well within your price range.

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Mon Sep 16, 2013 11:31 am

As excellent a stainless knife as you will find. http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kogy24.html

A great performing and looking stainless knife. http://www.chefknivestogo.com/satadagy210.html

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Mon Sep 16, 2013 6:12 pm

Thanks for the quick replies!

The Maruyoshi is the one I will probably go with (thanks Mark)- It's at the top of my price range, but looks like an excellent offering.

Can you recommend a supporting class of knives? I grill meat and veggies often, and am looking to add the necessary tools. I don't need a knife block full, just the necessities. I don't separate chicken parts or cut through bones. I do cut and trim meat and of course prep spears of veggies for placing on the grill. Also slice it up and use it in a variety of ways when it's leftover. Can I just use the gyoto for that kind of prep? I just saw an Alton Brown video on slicing meat on the bias. I can't wait to try it out with the new katana!

Any other knife suggestions? paring? utility? petty? I am thinking of getting the tojiro ITK bread knife, which seems like a great price.

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:36 pm

TSD <> I see nothing on your prep list that a 210mm gyuto can't perform well doing. If you need an excuse to buy a knife, your next most efficient choice would be a parer.

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:31 pm

What would you recommend for a good paring knife? I would like a 3.5-4.5

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:27 pm

TSD <> I have always said parers are the most difficult knife to find that fits. Even your request; 95 -115mm for a parer. I've tried it, and I just can't work with a 120mm as a parer; over 100mm becomes a small petty to me. I'm more a 75-95mm parer kinda Chef, but here are some ideas:

Workhorse that's just as comfortable scraping bones as hulling strawberries - Stainless #1... <--

Impeccable F&F w/superb ergonomics for my large hands - Stainless #2 <--

Lower price point Stainless #3 - price does not always equate to quality<--

Stainless-clad AS, a bit brittle for a parer, but workable ergos <--

Crazy light bladed carbon steel <--

Out-of-stock, but quite interesting, if nothing else <--

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:27 pm

Thank you for the recommendations! The Tamahagane looks like it would fit. I wish I could try before buy!

Re: Help on first japanese knife purchase?

Sat Sep 21, 2013 3:25 am

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