Which knife should I buy: Knife for the wife, she likes her Shun classics
What type of knife(s) do you think you want?
Santoku (yes, you guys can all collectively roll your eyes) or nakiri.
Why is it being purchased? What, if anything, are you replacing?
I want to get a gateway knife for the wife. She really likes her Shun classics, which are an improvement over the Wusthofs, the Forschners and the cheap Kiwis (which she liked too) that we had around the house. I've been buying carbon steel knives, and these have been great to use. However, they are too fussy for her. As the result, I need a stainless steel knife that easily demonstrates superiority over the Shuns, and thus giving me a larger knife budget.
What do you like and dislike about these qualities of your knives already?
Aesthetics - The fit and finish of the Shuns are good, and these knives are on a magnetic wall block.
Edge Quality/Retention - She likes a very sharp knife, and I do all the maintenance. Edge doesn't have to last long - it's a home knife and I'm the primary cook. However it can't be too difficult to get a new edge. I'm not that good at sharpening. I'd like to blame the stones, but it's most likely me.
Ease of Use - Wear resistant. Her standard MO is to cut, eat, and then clean up, especially if it's a light snack.
Comfort - Smaller handles.
What grip do you use?
What kind of cutting motion do you use?
Chop or pulling
Where do you store them?
Want to replace the Shuns on the magnetic block
Have you ever oiled a handle?
What kind of cutting board(s) do you use?
Wood for everything but chicken. Chicken gets a poly board.
For edge maintenance, do you use a strop, honing rod, pull through/other, or nothing?
All the above. Strop for j-knives. Rod for german knives.
Have they ever been sharpened?
What is your budget?
$100, as these were the price of the Shuns. I could spend $150, but then it won't be as good a comparison. The argument would be, "Well of course, if I spend 50% more on something, it should be better." If the price point is the same, then the comparison is cleaner.
What do you cook and how often?
She cooks about once a week, but prepares snacks (usually fruit) once a day. When she cooks, we'll both do prep work, so don't need a workhorse knife.
Special requests(Country of origin/type of wood/etc)?
Bonus if it's Wa handle.
Thanks in advance! Very interested to see what everyone recommends.
Canada's Sharpest Lefty
I'd get her some Shuns.
Nothing is wrong with them if she likes them. They're way better than we like to admit.
I got the wife one of these:
Although back then they were $50....
I actually got the brother in law the same.
Blade and handle need some finishing touches (rounding and waxing) but the knife itself is fine
What Shun Classic is $100? The 6" Chefs is $150!
The knock against Shun Classic is the big-bellied profile, the chippy yet difficult to deburr steel, and the somewhat clunky feeling weight in the handle. It sounds like your wife has no problems with any of these and has more than likely tailored her technique to their design. Furthermore, it sounds like she likes the Shun look. Getting her to like something else may be a losing battle but I'd go for something with a wa-handle, for starters. I haven't used any in the sub-$100 range though.
Santoku and nakiri Shun Classics were $100 each at Sur La Table, though they were "on sale." Also have a Shun Premier 6" chef's knife. Also $100 on sale. I really like the handle on the Premier.
Haven't had issues with chipping, as I do my limited butchering with a Forschner or a Chinese cleaver.
Thanks for everyone's advice, it's much appreciated. Losing battle with the wife? I'm used to that