Final Bit of advice Please...

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by tastytaco, Feb 18, 2017.

  1. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    OK.  I have been doing a good bit of research and reading reviews/forums and such.  Now I am looking for some words from people that aren't selling the knives.  I have searched this forum a fair amount.  Have read many of the reviews but most of the time you guys digress like ... well I'm not going to get into it now lol.

    I'm looking for 240 gyuto, no damascus crap, good steel, decent handle (wa or yo -- but mostly yo), stainless or at least stainless clad preferred but not mandatory, knife for a way-busy kitchen where I will see every station during the night so it might be left unsupervised from time to time.  I also do a large amount of prep before go-time. That being said peeps leave my other knives alone, and nobody puts knifes in sani-buckets, so I'm not really that worried about it.  I do have whetstones and a good bit of sharpening experience -- but can always learn more.  OH and a budget around $150.  So I'm not expecting the knife to be hand made by a celestial virgin on her 17th birthday during a full moon on the summer solstice. 

    I'll tell you what I've found, and really I don't think I can go wrong with any of them.  OH, previously I have used many shuns, two  Macs and a Global and while I think they are all great knives they aren't for me. (esp global)

    I'm not afraid of carbon

    Really probably one of my biggest questions is the value of the Chef Knives to Go, since I have nothing to base them off of and of course every review is gold plated.

    OK, the short list.  

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/habl2gy24.html Harukaze blue 2

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kobl2gy24.html#_ga=1.135769585.1522079868.1486752602  Kohetsu Blue 2

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kapsgy24.html  Kanehide PS60

    the Suisin Inox in aus-8

    and finally the Yoshihiro in Aus-10

    oops and the Misono Swedish Carbon or 440

    and who knows I may have forgotten one, all these numbers and names are spilling out.

    P.S. this probably won't be my last knife purchase.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    I dont buy anything from CKTG anymore. Their house knives are no bueno and the other stuff you can either find cheaper japanesechefsknife.com or find something better for the money. They sell questionable entry level knives in your price range and the quality control is bad. Their return policy is if you use or sharpen they wont take it back, 15% restock fee for unused knives plus your return shipping costs. Bad business.. some stuff they stock is okay but i will say 2 out of 3 times i bought from them i was disatisfied so not looking to spend bigger money there.

    Fwiw $150-200 is also my budget range for work knives. Good enough to make life easier but not so expensive to give you an ulcer.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2017
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  3. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    On to review.. harukaze is too thick forget that one

    I have had that kohetsu. Grind is actually nice and thin, cuts well. The handle is awful too flat, too wide, too square, very uncomfortable. Good rehandle project but not good for hours of work daily otherwise. Will give you carpal tunnel.


    My picks are togiharu at korin, gesshin uraku at japanese knife imports, and itinomonn (favorite) at japanesenaturalstones.com

    I would also recommend suien vc cleaver at $160 if you are willing to learn chinese cleaver skills
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2017
  4. foody518

    foody518

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    That's good. Haven't found that knife yet :)

    2 out of 3 underwhelmed by the Richmond brand knives. Moved more to shopping at places that work to have good house brands and QC, describe them accurately, and generally pick their offerings with more care

    Misono Swedish is going to be asymmetrical with a right side convex grind. It's not a super thin knife, feels like it runs a little soft, but has decent toughness and food release. Nice profile and handle. Factory edge is buffed to a high polish and feels kind of rounded. The edge sharpens up quickly.

    Itinomonn's going to be among the best cutters in that price range. Initial edge (on the V2) can run very thin and might need a touch of TLC on the stones to add some durability. Also easy to sharpen

    Gesshin Uraku's a solid light-middleweight pick. Good toughness.

    Options in that rough price range with increased edge retention -  

    http://www.knivesandstones.com/tojiro-powdered-high-speed-steel-gyuto-chef-240mm-f-521/ depending on which price will end up nicer after shipping.

    JKI's also got what looks to be roughly a stainless equivalent to the Suien VC https://www.japaneseknifeimports.com/collections/cleavers/products/gesshin-220mm-chinese-cleaver 
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2017
  5. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    Awesome, thank you both.  You answered some of my primary questions and gave me some new names to look at.  Now that I have eliminated the house brands I think most any choice will be good.

    I was a bit confused by all the house brands and where they really stood.

    I also like the takamaru r2 but that is in 210.  So, that's towards the bottom of the list.

    My first good knife that I spent years with was a wusthof veggie cleaver, but it was to heavy as the day went on when combined with cast iron saute pans.  but I really enjoyed the control, versatility and utility I have with a cleaver.  And I still keep a heavy cleaver for heavy cleaver jobs.  But that means a whole new class of research haha.  But alas I will look into those as well.

    The F-521 is an example of a knife that was on my short list but somehow had forgotten about.  
     
  6. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    Did you pinch grip it?  I use a 'peace sign' grip .  Thumb on left side, two fingers on the right side going pretty far down.  If you let the weight of the cleaver do the work and have a sharp one with good geometry, it will fly through food.    Anyway you might find the link in this post enlightening http://www.cheftalk.com/t/85968/cleaver-believer/30#post_512140
     
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  7. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    I did the pinch grip, I didn't know any better. This was some time ago, when I first got into fine dining -- so I hadn't used knives a whole lot anyways.

    I'll have to check out some cleavers.  Other than the one that has been suggested are there are any  cleavers / stores you would recommend ?
     
  8. foody518

    foody518

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    Stores - Korin, Knifewear, Bernal Cutlery, Epicurean Edge, Japanese Knife Imports, JapaneseChefsKnife, Knives and Stones, Chubo Knives, (trying to remember who has at least some western handled knives)
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
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  9. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    Thanks!  I just recently discovered JCK, Korin and Knives and Stones myself.  My short-short list is now the  Togiharu Cleaver at Korin, the Tojiro F-521 and I'm wondering about the  JCK Kagayaki Aogami #2 clad now...  oh and the itinomonn.. and the gesshin cleaver and uraku...  thought my list was suppose to get smaller.  But like i've said, I think now it's just personal preference and that I haven't listed a "bad" choice.

    I would post links but those go the mod, and get lost for days... 
     
  10. chefwriter

    chefwriter

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    I'll throw in two cents. Sabatier high carbon are my choice of knives. You can read through BDL's posts about them. He was a long time knife expert here. The only things I know about Japanese knives I read on this forum. 

    For chinese cleavers, I go to my local Asian markets. I have a cheap carbon -$12 and a Martin Yan I inherited from my father. Oh, and an enormous, heavy tank of a chinese cleaver I saw the

    cook cutting up the roast pork with. It's such a beast I had to have one. About $15.
     
  11. mike9

    mike9

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    I have a 240mm Kanehide PS60 and it's a nice knife.  Fit and finish are excellent for this price point, and it takes and holds a stupid sharp edge that is easy to maintain.  It's light and nimble for a 240.  I bought mine 2nd. hand so I can't speak for the OOTB edge, but Steve's video reviews are very accurate.  I agree with @MillionsKnives  about the Richmond line the ones made by Lamson have issues.  
     
  12. foody518

    foody518

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    Just to make sure you're aware, the Togiharu cleaver is fully carbon steel (as is the Suien VC). I don't find good monosteel carbon an excessive issue to deal with (I cook at home), and even less so after it's developed some patina.

    Your list looks pretty good
     
  13. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    What about the Sakai Takayuki grand chef?  The one with the Swedish stainless.   The Swedish aeb-l and powdered steel really seems to be an improvement on standard stainless.  I've read a bit about it online but most of the information is years old, just as knives like Glestain were once the rage but tech has since moved on.  On one hand I am tired of resharpening my soft German steel knives, even if they are stainless.  But at the same time I enjoy that you can't hardly hurt them aside from opening #10 cans with it.  Guess it's time for carbon?
     
  14. foody518

    foody518

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    Seems like they run a little soft compared to other options in the price range. 

    There's also Gonbei AUS-10 which is the yo-handled equivalent of the Gesshin Uraku stainless
     
  15. captainbligh

    captainbligh

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    I've used the Tojiro DP 240mm as my workhorse kitchen knife for prep shifts. No real complaints. Sharp and with a little tic will stay that way (I use ceramic DMT honing rod for that during shifts, the stones stay at home for when I need more than a quick touch-up), good & light in the hand, agile, ready and willing to cut. only downside was a little bit too 'light' for some things I dealt with when I had to switch back to a beefier German (an 8" wide chef). Would agree that the agility I felt with the Tojiro is also there in my vintage T-I and K Sabs. Those take a nice edge and with a little tic work fine. Would both be reasonable options.
     
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  16. foody518

    foody518

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    Edit to my previous comment - I was going off previously found listings of the Sakai Takayuki Grand Chef being listed at HRC 58. I've since seen some that say HRC 60. Still have no idea which one is accurate...
     
  17. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    I see that as well.  damn internet.

     I'm leaning more towards a workhorse stainless knife as my kitchen is a bit chaotic (aren't they all?)  But if I'm digging saute out of the weeds one minute, expo the next and then running apps I can't really do carbon.  So probably something like the tojiro hsps or sakai grand chef -- or similar.  I have a good stainless cleaver so another isn't really needed.
     
  18. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    Anyone have any experience with the Mayabi Koh?  Seems like a decent knife with decent steel and f&f.  the 8" is $99 which is better on the pocket.  I keep finding myself going up and up, kind of like car shopping. hah...

    everyone else have this much tribulation picking out a knife?
     
  19. foody518

    foody518

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    Looks like it was JUST released maybe in the past couple of weeks. Profile looks decent. Edge retention and grind less known, I don't know about that 9-12 dps either. The 9.5 inch is $160 though
     
  20. tastytaco

    tastytaco

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    yeah, that's a harsh jump.  not sure that a 8" wouldn't fit my kitchen better anyways.  There are some unknowns for sure.  without being able to handle any of the knives I'm looking at.