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Overwhelmed with your selection

Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:11 am

Hi Chef Knives To Go-

Great to find your site, I have already enjoyed perusing it today. Also, glad to see you are keeping the Madison economy strong, I now live in Chicago, but went to school in Madison and love it, was recently in-town twice this past month and cannot wait to get back.

As great as your website is, it is also incredibly overwhelming. There seem to be so many choices that are similar and I guess I need some help. I am looking for a sturdy starter set and probably have up to $500 to spend. I am a home cook, looking for a block with a few knives (they don't need to be same brand) that have versatility, important factors for me are strength of blade, sharpness, and rust resistance (hopefully these will last a bit..!!). I love the look and design of many of the Japanese blades and appreciate your insight and recommendations.


Re: Overwhelmed with your selection

Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:22 am

Hi Jeremy,

My suggestion is to get 1 good knife first. Then add other stuff after you've used the first one a bit. You don't have to do this but it will narrow your search and options if you try and get just 1 knife.

So let's help you choose a chef knife/gyuto.

Are you right handed?
You want stainless
You want to be around 150-250 it seems like for 1 knife
I'm guessing you don't know how to sharpen a knife
Do you want a Japanese type handle or a western type handle (3 rivet tang etc)

I'll guess for now that you are right handed, you don't know how to sharpen and you could go either way with the handle.

Here are a couple you might want to consider:

This Kikuichi is brand new. They use high qualitiy AEB-L stainless steel and they're really good looking:

This Takayuki Grand Chef has the same steel but does not have damascus and the handle is more standard. Excellent knife for less money than the one above:

For less money and with a western handle I really like these Suisin Inox. Good blades and easy to care for. They get overlooked:

Another good stainless western is the Masamoto VG. It's been around for quite a long time and is another overlooked knife. It's really good:

Re: Overwhelmed with your selection

Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:10 pm

Hi Mark-

Thanks for the response, forgive me, I am left handed but as a person who is completely new to the detailed knife world - is there a big difference. If I were to share the knife with a righty would it make a huge difference for either of us?

You are correct in that I dont know how to sharpen a knife (but am willing to learn). In terms of preference, I have only used the western handle but am open to the Japanese WA style. I don't have a ton of counter space so I think the 240 (9.5 inch) is going to be too large for me.

Appreciate your response.

Re: Overwhelmed with your selection

Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:37 am

Hi Jeremy and welcome to the forum!! :)

Some Japanese made gyuto's are asymetrically ground and this can affect how they perform to a leftie. In most instances it's rather slight and most people don't notice it too much.

Great coarse stone

An essential grit level, if you get only one stone, it should be in this grit range.

Good place to stop grit wise until you become very proficient at sharpening and want to see just what that knife is truly capable of.

A sink bridge is so nice to sharpen with. Makes a simple stone holder seem archaic.

Need something to flatten the stone's with....this is ideal. Sandpaper on glass will work, but in the long run this is cheaper, and easier to use.

The Sharpie trick....gotta know what you're hitting along that edge.

Best deburring device on the planet. :)

One of my favorite stainless knives


A cheaper, albeit still great, entry level knife

Doubles as a slicer.

Every knife collection needs a paring knife.

I should be a personal shopper!! :)

Re: Overwhelmed with your selection

Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:39 am

p.s. $593.45 w/ the Kikuichi.

$493.45 w/ the Richmond Artifex
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