(NOTE: The obligatory n00b form is below, just a primer first..)
Okay so I'm a newbie to this caliber of cutlery in the food world. Yes I've been in the business and know my way around a kitchen, and thankfully I now cook just for friends, family, and myself. But it is a passion of mine. I make do with what I got presently, but I have been scoping out a better Chef's knife for a looonng time now. And now, or soon thereafter, is the time for me to make a move on a new one.
So, talking knives with a dear friend who works as the Executive Chef at a local country club, I was under the impression Shun was "the name" in knives. At least for a "non-professional" like myself. Kershaw has a good rep, but I only knew of them through their pocketknives, and those fruity-looking Kai knives I used to have sitting on my counter. (Which are great beat-around knives btw, sharpens well, and don't stain.. But that's nothing compared to what you guys use...)
Then Global came up. I recognize them, see them in my peers' houses (the ones that shop at W-S and BB&B), like the feel, and heard that they're "all I'd need" for home use. And they're CrVn like my Snap-On stuff. But, somehow after reading on this site, I think that I'm missing something. Do you all have any brief insight on those two big names?
Now, to the point. I cook a lot. Like almost all my meals from scratch. Paleo stuff, I'm sure some of you all know what I'm talking about. Like cutting and chopping POUNDS of vegetables. Slicing big roasts. Mincing herbs like no tomorrow. I need a workhorse knife that can withstand the USE, not ABUSE (my GF isn't gonna touch this thing, she has her pretty purple 8" Chef's from the KAI set..). I understand the care necessary to maintain these things, but what kind of options should I be looking at as far as materials? I heard VG-10 and "Damascus" look is out for a "beginner", but stainless somehow doesn't appeal to me much either.
I'm gonna quit for now and let the form do some talking, hopefully spark a discussion that will rise some more questions..
What type of knife(s) do you think you want?
240mm Gyuto, been hearing Hiromoto AS, or Gesshin. Possibly Yoshihiro?
Why is it being purchased? What, if anything, are you replacing?
Just want something better, more effiecient. Elegant. Replacing Western-style Henkels and Wustofs
What do you like and dislike about these qualities of your knives already?
Aesthetics-Upscale look, classic Chef design
Edge Quality/Retention-Quality not so bad if I sharpen them, retention not so great
Ease of Use-Its a knive. If its sharp I feel it does its job. I don't chop for a living, no not too picky.
Comfort-Western handle is fine, I didn't like the Shun classic D-handle tho. Never held a true wa. Also, I'm a southpaw. So, looking at double beveled ground edges for that reason. Not trying to spend crazy money for a backwards lefty-only product. I spent my whole life dealing with that.
What grip do you use?
What kind of cutting motion do you use?
Where do you store them?
Have you ever oiled a handle?
Sure. For wooden spoons and flippers and such.
What kind of cutting board(s) do you use?
Edge grain maple for now, looking at Cherry or maple end grain soon
For edge maintenance, do you use a strop, honing rod, pull through/other, or nothing?
DMT Diamond sharpeners, with the guide clamp, Henkels Diamond Steel
Have they ever been sharpened?
Sharpened monthly, steeled before use.
What is your budget?
~150-200. More only if absolutely necessary. I'm not ashamed to not have the fanciest knife. BUT, I'm not afraid to spend money on quality products, hence why I'm on KKF researching these things.
What do you cook and how often?
Meat and veggies. Might cut up whole chicken too, Messermeister poultry shears work only okay at best.
Special requests(Country of origin/type of wood/etc)?
Japan, of course! Seems to be the way to go..
Thanks for the help from all of you! So great to talk to people who share the interest, not just to sell you stuff in a store because they think you got unlimited money for expensive kitchen items..