Looking for a new Japanese Knife.

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Hello Chef Talk, I am no professional chef but I do cook a lot and enjoy really nice knives that don't break a wallet, I am currently looking for a Japanese Knife and wanted to hear your guys opinion about a couple i'm looking at, I have been looking at the Tojiro Black Finished Shiro-ko Kasumi Gyutou - 8.2" knife () and wanted to possibly hear opinions over it, other one is the Tojiro DP Gyutou - 8.2" (), not sure what people would most recommend but I have owned quite a few Carbon Steel Knives and know how to take care of them and willing to properly, not sure if that changes anything and wanting to hopefully hear if anyone has any recommendations for one that is not overly expensive like a Shun or something.
 
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I have a petty from the Tojiro shirogami line. It's very bare bones white steel, very easy to sharpen, edge retention is okay. The kurouchi finish rubs off and is kind of thin. When you wipe your knife, as you will often to clean and dry a carbon steel knife, it is rough and causes friction against a towel. The handle is awful. To be clear I prefer wa handles like this, but this particular handle is bad. Didn't like the shape or weight or the plastic ferrule that is too small and not flush with the wood. So yes it is 1/2 to 1/3 the price of a good quality basic carbon steel wa handled gyuto but it has a few minor issues. It's a good project knife if you plan to replace the handle, sand off and refinish the blade, etc.

The Tojiro DP is stainless and good to go out of the box. It benefits from a little thinning behind the edge but other than that it is a goldilocks kind of knife. Not too thin not too thick, not too hard or soft. I think it is a good starter knife as you learn to sharpen and decide what your preferences are. It's the best you can do at $60

If you stretch your budget to $100 or $150 we have many different recommendations, whether it is worth it to you or not who knows
 
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Sorry for the very late reply,I have a budget of around 150$ and below, I have been thinking very highly of getting one of these 2 knives currently, 
 
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I actually really like how that knife is and will most likely get that one since it is a starter Japanese Knife but curious if there is a big difference between the oval handle and the octagon handles, is one more comfy or is it a sort of preference thing and curious what is so special damascus steel.
 
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That very first one you mentioned, the Tojiro Black Finished Shiro-ko Kasumi Gyutou, is very nice, in all kinds of ways. I don't have that one, but 3 much like it. It's inexpensive, works well in a pro kitchen, is easy to sharpen and you can practice and learn all day with it. In a coupla years, when you've worn it down to a pickle-sticker you can just get a new knife rather painlessly for the investment.
 
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'Damascus steel' in this price range is just visual patterning on the cladding layers

Have oval, have octagonal, have right and left 'D' shapes, western handles, they're all fine so long as you don't have a very fixed handle preference. Handles that run narrow in diameter can be less liked by some. I pinch grip blades so there is not that much handle contact anyways.

How are you sharpening your knives?
 
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I have a knife shop in my town that whetstone sharpen knives for 5 bucks and I may take there lessons since they offer them I believe to learn how to sharpen the knives myself.
 
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Brian makes a good point. Under $10 for an 8 inch chefs knife for good whetstone sharpening seems to be an anomaly
 
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I was going to say, I enjoy sharpening myself, but if there were a local place that hand sharpened on stones for $5 which I trusted, I might never sharpen again haha.
 
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That very first one you mentioned, the Tojiro Black Finished Shiro-ko Kasumi Gyutou, is very nice, in all kinds of ways. I don't have that one, but 3 much like it. It's inexpensive, works well in a pro kitchen, is easy to sharpen and you can practice and learn all day with it. In a coupla years, when you've worn it down to a pickle-sticker you can just get a new knife rather painlessly for the investment.
I have to highly disagree here man, haha. I love the DP series, but that cheapo white steel knife is just awful. Actually bought one for a friend years ago and it was terrible. Super prone to instant rusting, smells so funky when wet, ugly patina, handle is utter crap and the grinds were like 4 hours on the stones away from being acceptable and uniform and apparently that reputation precedes it outside my sole encounter. 
 
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As for the OP, have you ever thought about buying second hand off a site like this, or a shop such as Bernal Cutlery? 
 
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OK. Still. 

What's your point? Are ALL late 80's and early 90's American cars a bad thing? 

Let me help you here ... that's more than 20-years ago.
 
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I went to the knife shop today and ended up getting a Damascus steel Santoku after looking at many it felt the best and the people highly recommended it for new Japanese knife users as a use friendly knife that can be easy to learn sharpening and doesn't break to easy, they said it does actually cost 10 dollars to get it sharpened and the guy said if I bring it in since I bought it from them he will give me some demonstrations on how to sharpen it and let me try later on since it was already perfectly sharp.
 
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Which one did you get?

Congratulations on making a decision. Enjoy.
 
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