Question for J&W, RI students: Knives

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Joined May 11, 2010
I have a friend that's starting culinary arts at Johnson & Wales, RI next semester, I was wondering if the students were given a set of knives(like some schools give each student a laptop) or they just buy their own?

I wanted to get her a knife roll and a few knives to get her started as a gift. I was thinking maybe a santoku, a boning, and a fillet knife. I'll leave the chef knife for her to choose which fits best.

Thanks for your help.
 
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Joined Apr 24, 2010
I don't know about J&W to be honest, but I've seen other schools with lower tuition provide knife sets, so I would hope J&W does! You could always just call them and ask. If they give knives, they're sure to brag about it if asked.

Anyway, about buying someone else some knives, I'd be careful. You could spend a lot of money on knives that'll never be used. Unless you know of very specific knives that you absolutely know your friend already uses, I'd stick with a gift certificate to a knife supplier if I were you. I know it's not as creative a gift, but ultimately it's likely to get more use.

One way or another, that's very nice of you to do!
 
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Joined May 11, 2010
My father is a chef and I've worked with enough knives to pick out good quality ones my friend would use. It's almost impossible not to need a boning and fillet knife. If she doesn't like it I can always keep it for myself. Can never have enough good knives =)

Thanks for the response! 
 
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Joined Sep 18, 2008
My father is a chef and I've worked with enough knives to pick out good quality ones my friend would use. It's almost impossible not to need a boning and fillet knife. If she doesn't like it I can always keep it for myself. Can never have enough good knives =)

Thanks for the response! 
Hm, I don't think there was necessarily a question about "quality", I think it was more about "personal fit and preference". A "Rolex" may be a great watch but it would be wasted on me. I have a drawer full of "good knives" that I never use, I keep them around because they were "gifts" from well meaning friends and relatives but they are not comfortable for me to use, so I don't.

If you KNOW what she likes and what fits HER style, go ahead, otherwise, maybe a "gift card" with a special note letting her know it is for her to chose HER knives.
 
 
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Joined May 4, 2010
they usually are bought packaged and sometimes are part of an overall package from a larger distributor (ie bundle the knife kit with 3 uniforms and a stack of textbooks, etc). There's a lot of money in the business of "fulfilment" like that in academia and as a result the expectation tends to be that everyone starts with the exact same kit to start, even if you don't need it.

ie, you're going to get the school's set of knives as part of your tuition costs and you won't save the full face value of the knife set by NOT buying it (if the school will even allow you not to), because the school is probably getting the knife set as at a considerable volume discount.

hope that makes sense.
 
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Joined Apr 24, 2010
That's exactly what I meant, Pete. Quality doesn't matter if you don't like how it feels in your hand, and that in personal preference. Granted, if you know someone likes fill-in-the-blank brand or the like, then go to town with it! But even in that regard, I haven't stuck to just one knife company (or line).
Hm, I don't think there was necessarily a question about "quality", I think it was more about "personal fit and preference". A "Rolex" may be a great watch but it would be wasted on me. I have a drawer full of "good knives" that I never use, I keep them around because they were "gifts" from well meaning friends and relatives but they are not comfortable for me to use, so I don't.

If you KNOW what she likes and what fits HER style, go ahead, otherwise, maybe a "gift card" with a special note letting her know it is for her to chose HER knives.
 
 
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Joined May 14, 2010
i dont know if this has been settled, but yes the tuition buys your knife sets and uniforms, and no you cant have your own set. ive been at jwu, and thats the way it is.

as far as knives for a gift, personally, id be either way. if its a knife that the person knew for a fact would fit, id be ok with it, and i would stay away from buying a santoku or chef knife, simply cuz some people love 7 inch chef knives because its more control over a 10 inch. id go with like you said, a boning knife, or a paring knife, but judge their hand size, and then make your choice. thats just my thought
 
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Joined May 5, 2009
You will get a knife set, if you would like to see it go to the JW website. It's the same I got in 1981. I would not bring personal knives to class you will reget that. Kinda like the army everyone needs to be the same, odd man out gets to do dishes.
 
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Joined Jul 21, 2010
I go to JWU in RI and yes they do give you your knife set. But they make you pay for a meat thermometer and the books for your culinary labs.
 

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