Thanks so much for your answer. I will be picking up that saya but I have an additional question... as I might be buying another knife with it.
I hate to be a bother, but I've been spending a large amount of hours studying knives and sharpening, as well as researching maintenance tools and I've found your online videos to be amazingly helpful and instructive. So maybe I can pick your brain a tiny bit and give you a little more business?
My best friend is progressing in his cooking career, but has been working his way up and up and I don't think ever had a really good proper knife. He had his knives stolen recently, and also got a new job so I want to find a good knife for him as a gift. I've done some research and i'm told that HE _needs_ to go hold and feel his own knife. I completely understand the validity in that sentiment, but I think I can do a decent job from afar and surprise him all the same.
Tricky part: He's left-handed. He considers himself ambidextrous, and we throw darts at a local pub often enough for me to HATE that claim because it's somewhat true. But he was telling me tonight that his chef suggested he use a knife that my friend couldn't work with. And when I asked more questions, it turns out it was a Japanese knife and his chef didn't realize my friend is left-handed.
I'd like to ask you -- Can you recommend something for my friend as a specifically left-handed knife, in the 200.00 range, that will not require him to study up on Japanese knives and sharpening techniques? Or would it be fair for me to buy him something he can use in his kitchen at a more affordable price, and give him a year of sharpening at a local place where he can both learn about care of a knife or whatnot?
I have to say, i'm rather partial to gifting him this knife: http://www.cutleryandmore.com/product_view.asp?id=26443
as it has a double bevel and a decent angle and would probably last hime awhile. but you guys rock and i'd like to give you my business if I can.
I hope this lengthy email isn't out of line, but maybe you guys can give me some ideas as to whether I should even bother trying to get him a left-handed knife without him feeling it or holding it. Or if I can just get him a good Wusthof 10" chef's knife and have that work for him. I want this blade to last him, but I don't want to give him the equivalent of a pet he doesn't know how, or have the time, to take care of.
Again, thanks for your time!