I can't disagree with Jeff's recommendation as that is one awesome AEB-L Gyuto, but YOU DO know enough to guide me... you just didn't share any of said knowldege.
You mentioned somewhere amid the thread about not having a slicer (side note: I would have never recommended a slicer to split a raw spaghetti squash)
, but I still have little idea of what knives you do own. Yes, you, "Mostly...have a basic german set from years back in the working kitchen, supplemented with a few here and there - old carbon Dexters, a Nakiri, a cheapo Japanese chef," and you confuse me further with, "But when I pick up a Aogami Super, or a VG-10."
So what hard steel knives do you own, and may I assume your Germans are the standard: Chef's, paring, petty, slicer, bread?
What I'm trying to do here is find your gaps. Yes, a Gyuto IS the manual food processor, and it is the one knife you need if you can only have one - that is, as an American cooking in America which encompasses numerous cuisines, but I really have no idea what you have so let's run with it.
If you just want a Blue Super Steel Gyuto with a Yo-handle, the Hiromoto <--link
is your go-to. If you want a BADASS Wa-handle, you'll be hard pressed to beat the Kanehiro <--link.
These profiles will be a nice transition from the Germans you're used to. If the Kanehiro is too expensive, the fully reactive Moritaka <--link
is another wa-option. Another option if #1) you can wait, #2) you want a total change from the German profiles you grew up on, & #3) you can deal with a large knife - this Damascus Gyuto by Takumi Ikeda <--link
is one amazingly impressive option. And lastly, if you want an AS Laser, the Kohetsu <--link
is the new kid on the block rocking everybody's socks off. The profile rocks well, for you being used to a German profile, and although I'm not particularly fond of the very high tip, I think you'd love it.