2nd Chef knife

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by kaucook, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Hi! I am new to this forum and this webpage, I found it searching advices to buy a knife and it's pretty good. English is not my mother language, so I hope u can understand me.

    I am studying and working as a cook, and I only have a pretty bad chef knife, and want to upgrade it.

    I want a chef knife of 23 cm minimum not very expensive, but good. My budget is around 100€. I have thought about Wusthof, Solicut, Kasumi and Global. Read http://www.cookingforengineers.com/article/129/Chefs-Knives-Rated  but there are so many choices that is difficult, any advice?

    Thanks and ask me about anything u don't understand.

    Edit: Maybe, as it's gonna be my first "good" chef knife I could stick with Victorinox 10-inches, how is it? I have read it's fine, but I'm going to work as a cook, so I don't know if it's good at that level or more for house cooking, if u know what I mean.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  2. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Without knowing more about you and what you like in and want from a knife it's hard to talk about your four suggestions.

    Wusthofs are very well made but they have the weight, profile and edge holding disadvantages of German knives.  Solicut, the same. Personally, I'd take a Global over either of the others, but Global has so many issues that it would be well down my list.  Kasumi are okay (if not a particularly good value), but are you sure you can find them in your price range? 

    The article posted on Cooking for Engineers is very dated, and doesn't include much about how well the knives tested take and hold edges over a long time period -- which are among the most important qualities for a professional chef.

    You did not mention how you plan to keep your new knife sharp over its lifetime.

    The Victorinox Fibrox/Rosewood chef's knife has a German profile (which I don't like), comfortable handle(s), takes a good edge easily, doesn't hold it well -- needing LOTS of steeling, is thick and wedges, is  lighter than most German knives but considerably heavier than most Japanese, and is well-priced.  I'd classify it as the least expensive, and one of the most problematic of "good" knives, but "good."  It's not a very good knife by any means but it's certainly usable.  It's also cheap enough to replace when your budget grows and your skills improve. 

    You did say where you aren't but not where you are, so it's difficult to say anything knowledgeable about price.  Honestly though, it's unlikely I can give you much good information for anywhere outside of the States.  Assuming you're in the EU, consider the Fujiwara FKM and Tojiro DP (which are both available in Europe), and the Kagayaki CarboNext (available directly from Japan) if you're already a proficient sharpener. 

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  3. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Well, I'm from Spain, but I haven't got any difficulty in picking knifes online, as I already live far from any shop. I want a versatile knife, what I am going to do with it is mostly cutting vegetables. I have a sharpening stone and steel (The long one wich corrects the edge). I know how to sharpen, but still not very good at it. I don't like santokus, I prefer chef knives.

    Thanks and sorry for the lack of information I gave

    Edit: http://japanesechefsknife.com/FKMSeries.html  I would have to buy for example Gyuto (That is chef knife, right?) 24 cms --- 83 $

    Or http://nipponkitchen.com/acatalog/Tojiro_DP_Range.html  or Tojiro DP 21 cms 92 $ aprox

    What are the main differences between them, what would u pick, why should I pick one or the other, etc.?

    Thanks again!
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  4. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Well, I've been looking info, and I've decided myself to pick FKM 21 cms. For sharpening it what would be a good set of stones or a single one? How can I know wich grit are the stones I have? They are from my parent, wich is carpenter and uses them for his tools, maybe they are too rough.
     
  5. knifesavers

    knifesavers

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    Depends what he has. Woodworkers are as picky, if not more so, about sharpening their chisels and gouges than chefs are about knives.

    I get a fair amount of sharpening supplies from woodworking dealers.

    Ask him if his stones are oilstones or waterstones and their grits

    2 stones should suffice for routine maintenance, a 1K and a 4 to 6K. I carry 4 stones in my waterstone kit a Gesshin 400, 2K, 4K and 6K and they cover most everything but the 2K and 4 or 6K would work too.

    Jim
     
  6. kaucook

    kaucook

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  7. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    CKtG is a better source for sharpening stones than JCK.  If you buy from CKtG, I suggest getting their three stone, four piece (the fourth piece is a magnifying loupe) set.  The stones (water stones) are very good quality, excellent for kitchen knives, and much better for that purpose than the stones typically used by woodworkers.  At this time, the CKtG kit is the best value for a set of really good stones I know of.  You should also think about CKtG's inexpensive (25USD), diamond flattening plate. 

    If your budget is tight, you can spend less than the CKtG and do well enough for a beginner's set which is good enough to last you for a few years. 

    I understand that there are some good sources for stones in Europe, so you may want to research that yourself.  I doubt you'll find much information here.  The only online retailers I can think of offhand are Dieter Schmid in Germany and Korin in Paris.  But I know there's at least one good place in the Netherlands as well.  En Espana?  Quien sabe? 

    Don't buy Norton water stones.  They used to be one of the top actions, but in the greater scheme of things their time is passed; there are much faster stones for the money which don't dish as easily.  Gesshin are excellent stones, but way too expensive for you at this time. 

    Both the Tojiro and Fujiwara are what I think of "entry level" into the high-end of kitchen knives.  Both represent very good value, and you'd probably be happy with either.  The Tojiro is stiffer but "san mai."  San mai is a Japanese term which means "three layer laminate."  San-mai allows Tojiro to save some money on construction costs which allows them to use an expensive, high-performance steel of the central core (VG-10) and keep their prices down.  The knives have equal edge taking properties, but by a very slight margin the Tojiro holds its edge better.  The Fujiwara is more flexible, too flexible for some people but it's also more agile. 

    If I were choosing between the two for myself, I'd choose the Fujiwara for myself because most san-mai knives, including the Tojiro DP, feel numb and damped on the board -- to me.  Most people either aren't aware of that or don't care. 

    If you've already restricted your choice to those two, don't beat yourself up too much making the decision.  The most important thing to remember is that they're both very good, you won't regret either, and either will make you happy for a long time.  Don't beat yourself up too much over the choice.

    Buena Suerte,

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2012
  8. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Well, thanks for your advice, I already decided to pick the Fujiwara, still thinking on the stones, because apart from the ones wich come on the set, I don't have any idea on wich one to pick. For a 2 stones set I guess I'll need a 1000-1200 one and another around 5k or 6k, right? Is 2 stones enough? Wich brands can I trust to be good? Korin has King, Mizuyama and Kitayama, and the shipping is so expensive. Dieter Shmid has King, Sun Tiger, Bester, Suehiro, Cerax, Chocera, Naniwa... And the shipping is better, and in Cktg there are plenty.

    And I've been investigating and I can't find any goood source for stones in Spain.

    Thanks!

    PS: For starting to get good at sharpening, is there any kind of online resource?
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2012
  9. kaucook

    kaucook

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  10. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Amigo,

    If you're going to buy your stones from the US, it's hard to do better than CKtG's four piece / three stone set.  You'll also need a flattener, so you might as well add their diamond plate ($25USD).  You don't need absolutely need a stone holder, but most people find them a convenience. 

    CKtG and JKI each have good online video tutorials.  Watch them all.  Jon (JKI) is one of the best sharpeners around, and Mark (CKtG) is a very good teacher.

    Remember, there isn't any one best way to sharpen; nor probably is there any one best way even just for you. That said, I suggest reading Chad Ward's FAQ (that's the one at e-gullet) and focusing on creating a burr, chasing it (getting it to bend back and forth) and deburring.  That means learning to detect the burr by feel.  I also very strongly suggest using the "Magic Marker" trick which Chad describes.  I've taught a few dozen people to sharpen that way, and helped scores more online.  In my opinion the burr method is not only a very powerful technique and the one I most often use, but with the Magic Marker trick, it's by far the easiest way to understand what's going on and the easiest way to learn for a majority of people.

    If you have specific questions don't be afraid to ask them here.  There are three or four very competent sharpeners who contribute here regularly, and a relatively low quotient of posers compared to other forums. 

    Buena suerte,

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  11. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Well, two things, I already did my order and I didn't get the flattener, what's it purpose, can I buy one here, etc?

    What is a magic marker? Is a kind of marker I guess but I don't know if it's a brand or a type.

    thanks!
     
  12. granada762

    granada762

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    A magic marker is a mysterious scepter that will change silk into gold. lol. (too many fairytales as a child)

    Sorry for the bad humor. They are popular in Canada. They are just permanent markers.

    A flattener I believe is to touch up your stones to a flat surface. I watched a few videos last night and they sound like a must have for any stones to keep them true.

    I'm eager to learn or be corrected. Gotta start somewhere.

    Cheers,

    Jeff Mayville.
     
  13. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Can anyone show me a picture of one? If it's  permanent, wouldn't it just get on the knife forever¿
     
  14. knifesavers

    knifesavers

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  15. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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  16. kaucook

    kaucook

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    Thanks for the answers! Something like this can work? [​IMG]

    My FKM and stones arrived, they are very beautiful. I'm learning to use the stones on a more bad knife I have. One question, how much sharp is FKM Fujiwara out of the box? How do I measure the sharpeness of a knife? 

    Thanks!

    P.S: Very thankful to this forum, made my choice of J-knife with a lot of reasoning behind and a lot of good advice. Thanks you all! Especially boar-d-laze