I'm a beginner chef, I cook at home most nights of the week. I've been cooking for a few months, and so far have only used a knife from a gift set my dad got from his work and gave me. It was decent to start off, but now I'm to a point where I want to get something a bit better. Knife skills: I've watched a few online videos for technique help, but go pretty slow. Having a dull knife doesn't really help with the speed. Since the chef's knife I have is dull, I tend to do sort of a forward slicing motion rather than rocking, so I'm thinking a Santoku might be a good bet. Types of food cut: Generally onions, peppers, zucchini, carrots, salmon, chicken breast (no bone), garlic, herbs, and occasionally I'll slice a cooked steak. Availability: I live in Austin, TX, so there's probably some cool local knife store somewhere if anyone has recommendations. I've currently just gone to Sur la table, but there's also a William Sonoma nearby. I'd rather get this first one in person so I can try it out and have a physical store to return it to if need be. For the next knife I might consider ordering something. Price Range: Less than $200 Thanks in advance to anyone who helps out. Normally I'd read old threads for something like this, but it seems like knife choice is very custom to a user's particular situation. Edit: Also, I'm interested in japanese knives. No particular logical reason, I just think they're pretty slick. Edit2: As far as sharpening goes, I don't have too much interest in learning a really difficult method. How much am I looking at for a decent low skill sharpener? I'd like to keep it under $100 if possible.