What’s a decent set of kitchen knives….

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by T.A., Mar 23, 2022.

  1. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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    that will not break the bank. Basically something that takes a good edge and looks decent. I don’t want to pay $1200 for something that my wife will “accidentally” toss in the dishwasher blade down with all the other silverware lol.
     
  2. Kylemeister

    Kylemeister Member

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    For normal home use, I'd say Wusthof or Zwilling.

    The Wusthof Ikon & Classic are the same blades, with the Ikon being a newer design that eliminates the bolster. A buddy of mine just replaced his old school Wusthof Grand Prix series from when he was working in a kitchen professionally to the Ikon series.

    For Zwilling, knives with the "twins" logo instead of just a single man on the logo. Anything above the Gourmet line should be good. I used one of the Professional S series 8" chef knives for 20+ years at home before upgrading. I ended up replacing it with a Zwilling Kramer series just to have something different to drive.

    I don't have any experience with the commercial Japanese lines, such as Shun, Enso, etc. I have bought a couple of Japanese knives to play around with in the kitchen. The main differences are Japanese blades are a lot harder than their German counterparts (62-65 Rockwell, vs. 57-59). Better edge retention, but at the cost of being more brittle according to some folks.

    These guys have taken a lot of my money in the past year.
    https://www.cutleryandmore.com/

    If you want to take a deep dive into Japanese stuff, this site has all sorts of info on different steels and manufacturers:
    https://www.chefknivestogo.com/
     
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  3. shaneadams90

    shaneadams90 ESEE Knives Marketing Director Staff Member

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    I've had a set of Chicago Cutlery in carbon steel and some Old Hickory and they have been great...
     
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  4. Drew RedBear

    Drew RedBear Member

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    Mercer is pretty good too and what we used in culinary arts school
     
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  5. Kylemeister

    Kylemeister Member

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    I almost forgot about them. I bought a starter set of the Mercer Millenia for my girlfriend's daughter for Christmas. They are used in culinary school, and they rated pretty well against Wusthof in a test from Burrfection on YouTube. I haven't had a chance to drive them and they slipped my mind.

    Good add Drew!
     
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  6. Drew RedBear

    Drew RedBear Member

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    I lost my set along the way unfortunately but that's what I use now, a Mercer Renaissance 8" chef, and love it. I can't afford wusthof otherwise I'd own them lol.
     
  7. Wisdom

    Wisdom Member

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    Shun in VG10 are hard to beat. Ive had a set of Henkel 4 star series for almost 25 years. They have been great. After about 20 years of daily use, the paring knife snapped in half! Ive got no complaints otherwise.
     
  8. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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  9. Adventurer

    Adventurer Member

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    I would suggest just buying the ones you like one at a time. They don't need to be a matching set. They can each be different and fun to use. I got the LT Wright Large Pouter that I use a lot, have a Calphalon chiefs knife, and am deciding what to pick up for a new pairing knife next (maybe the LT Wright small pouter, a spyderco pairing knife, or ???)
     
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  10. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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    I’ve been seriously considering doing exactly this
     
  11. Adventurer

    Adventurer Member

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    I would highly suggest it!

    I would start with a Large Pouter for a mid sized knife. I would LOVE to upgrade my chef knife to one of these some day but they are expensive...

    https://usamadeblade.com/collection...th-copper-pins-nitro-v?variant=42663523451093

    That's the nice thing about getting them individually, you can just upgrade one whenever you feel like it. I also think it makes things fun! I have a 1/4" thick clever that makes me smile when I use it. My wife gives me a funny look and says "do you really need to use that???"
     
  12. anrkst6973

    anrkst6973 Member

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    There’s no shame in Dexter Russell. In another life I used, and saw used, dozens of them for commercial work day in and day out and they didn’t fail. I mostly use Victorinox myself. They are cheap enough to own and simply work. I cook all the time and the 4-5 I have function fantastically. Sharp, thin, and available.
     
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  13. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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    I went ahead a decided to buy one piece at a time. For some reason I kept going back to this one so I went ahead and ordered it. If I like it I will get their Chef knife next
    https://www.smkw.com/shun-kanso-7-inch-santoku
     
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  14. Kylemeister

    Kylemeister Member

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    Victorinox is another one that slipped my mind. Their Fibrox 8" chef's knife is a top performer in a lot of reviews. I don't care for their paring knives, mostly due to ergonomics.

    It's a lot of fun to build your own set as you go. A really solid chef's knife (or gyuto or bunka) & paring/petty knife handles most chores in the kitchen.

    My first "set" was acquired a knife a time, from the same manufacturer and line, over the course of a couple of years. But right now, nothing matches except my set of Victorinox steak knives. Paring, petty, boning, santoku, bunka, chef are all from different makers and different steels.
     
  15. Delkancott

    Delkancott Member

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    F70C4E32-3C39-459F-8DBF-0C61A87AA9B9.jpeg I had Wusthof that my ex wife ended up keeping in the divorce. Knice knives but heavy for my personal liking. I agree with the others not to buy a set. I would just pick a chefs knife you want and go from there. Also, magnet over block all day.

    I ended up with a pair of custom knives from Rick Marchand (a gyuto and nakiri) after meeting a business goal I had set, and just supplement with Victorinox paring knives. Aside from a bread knife I haven’t found myself needing anything else

    ETA: picture because they’re great knives.
     
  16. erik

    erik Member

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    Opinel paring knives are awesome.
    Work great for steak, too.
     
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  17. anrkst6973

    anrkst6973 Member

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    gotta say Del those are just super dang nice.
     
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  18. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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    We have a small 4” santoku that we really like but it’s junk steel that will not hold an edge. That’s why I opted for the 7” Shun as the first knife of my “build it myself” set. A chef’s knife will be next. I like the idea of a magnetic strip as well.
    I think the set we currently using was like $99 for a 16 piece set lol
     
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  19. Kylemeister

    Kylemeister Member

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    T.A. -- I'm fighting with edge retention on an 8" carbon steel Sabatier. It's a low Rockwell hardness blade, but it's wicked easy to sharpen. I'm trying to learn to sharpen by hand on stones, instead of a Lansky or Work Sharp. It's an inexpensive blade that is great for practice.
     
  20. T.A.

    T.A. Member

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    My Shun arrived yesterday. I like the feel and it came with a wicked sharp edge.
     

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