Looking for a chefs knife at a good price... Recommendations please

Joined Aug 14, 2011
Im looking to get a good chefs knife that is sturdy and reliable and preferrably japanese  that is not too too expensive, about $160 or less. Also along with that could you recommend a good stone to use
Joined Feb 13, 2008
Presumably 240mm and a western handle? 

Japanese knives tend to be a little more flexible than European knives.  The stiffest of them which still has all the Japanese virtues is the MAC Pro.  If you're willing to accept a little more flex, your range of choices broadens considerably.  I recommend MAC Pro a lot, and a lot of people have bought on that recommendation.  It's always turned out well.

Very good profile, very good edge qualities, great handle, excellent warranty, excellent US support (in case there's a problem), and (of course) stiff.  If that doesn't jump right out at you, help me narrow your druthers down a little for me.  Anything in particular you want or don't want?

How good a sharpener are you?  If you're pretty good you might want to consider the Kagayaki CarboNext.  It's a very good knife and well within your price range.  Unfortunately, it's notorious for arriving with a crappy edge from the retailer (japanesechefsknives.com) -- even if you pay extra for "special" sharpening.  Too bad.  It's the only ongoing knock against JCK of which I'm aware.  Anyway, let's not stick you with something you can't get sharp.

How many knives will you be sharpening with your new kit?  You can't really get by with just one surface.  You're either going to want a combination stone, or a two, three or four stone kit.  Which one depends on budget, needs and skills.


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