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Thread: Please Recommend a Santoku

  1. #1

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    Please Recommend a Santoku

    I'm looking to get first j-knife for my wife and myself, and been lurking the forum for past couple of weeks.


    LOCATION
    What country are you in?
    Singapore


    KNIFE TYPE
    What type of knife are you interested in (e.g., chef’s knife, slicer, boning knife, utility knife, bread knife, paring knife, cleaver)?
    Santoku 170-180 or Gyuto 180

    Are you right or left handed?
    Right handed

    Are you interested in a Western handle (e.g., classic Wusthof handle) or Japanese handle?
    Open for both options

    What length of knife (blade) are you interested in (in inches or millimeters)?
    170mm - 180mm

    Do you require a stainless knife? (Yes or no)
    Prefer to be stainless, but im open for a carbon knife with stainless cladding

    What is your absolute maximum budget for your knife?
    USD 290 (shipped) more than that I will have to pay additional Tax 7% which I rather not to


    KNIFE USE
    Do you primarily intend to use this knife at home or a professional environment?
    Home

    What are the main tasks you primarily intend to use the knife for (e.g., slicing vegetables, chopping vegetables, mincing vegetables, slicing meats, cutting down poultry, breaking poultry bones, filleting fish, trimming meats, etc.)? (Please identify as many tasks as you would like.)
    Mainly slicing vegetables, chopping vegetables, mincing vegetables, slicing meats, cutting down poultry, trimming meats.
    Going to get additional chinese bone cleaver over Tao Bao for cutting bones.


    What knife, if any, are you replacing?
    Not exactly replacing, but currently using a set of 3 Zwilling Twin Profection which consist of 8" Chef knife, 8" Carving knife, and 4" Paring knife


    Do you have a particular grip that you primarily use? (Please click on this LINK for the common types of grips.)
    regular/pinch grip type

    What cutting motions do you primarily use? (Please click on this LINK for types of cutting motions and identify the two or three most common cutting motions, in order of most used to least used.)
    not expert, but more of Push cutting & slicing

    What improvements do you want from your current knife? If you are not replacing a knife, please identify as many characteristics identified below in parentheses that you would like this knife to have.)
    Shorter blade to have more of control

    Better aesthetics (e.g., a certain type of finish; layered/Damascus or other pattern of steel; different handle color/pattern/shape/wood; better scratch resistance; better stain resistance)?
    more of function than aesthetics, but good to have damascus cladding.

    Comfort (e.g., lighter/heavier knife; better handle material; better handle shape; rounded spine/choil of the knife; improved balance)?
    Expecting shorter blade hence lighter and better in control and balance.

    Ease of Use (e.g., ability to use the knife right out of the box; smoother rock chopping, push cutting, or slicing motion; less wedging; better food release; less reactivity with food; easier to sharpen)?
    Best if have better food release, durable, easier to sharpen and less maintenance.

    Edge Retention (i.e., length of time you want the edge to last without sharpening)?
    once a month


    KNIFE MAINTENANCE
    Do you use a bamboo, wood, rubber, or synthetic cutting board? (Yes or no.)
    Yes, IKEA small wood cutting board and a bigger bamboo cutting board (I just know bamboo is bad for knife)

    Do you sharpen your own knives? (Yes or no.)
    Not exactly, using those handheld sharpener

    If not, are you interested in learning how to sharpen your knives? (Yes or no.)
    Yes

    Are you interested in purchasing sharpening products for your knives? (Yes or no.)
    Yes, maybe king kds 1000/6000 or if can recommend combination stone of 1000/3000



    SPECIAL REQUESTS/COMMENTS
    Currently shortlisted these 2:
    1. Sukenari ZDP-189 Santoku 180mm Sanmai (http://www.knivesandstones.com/suken...-180mm-sanmai/) about USD 269 (shipped)
    i read zdp 189 hold good edge retention but my concern with this reactive, can rust easily, and difficult to sharpen
    2. Shiki Special Collection R-2 Nickel Damascus Santoku 180mm (7 inch, Ebony Wood Handle) (https://japanesechefsknife.com/colle...rl-wood-handle) USD 265 + 7 Shipping fee.
    this should be maintenance free knife R2 PM knife, love the mosaic pin and ebony handle. Damascus and special edition is a plus. but not sure if this is a good choice.

    a third option is getting from a local collector which selling one of his collection; a brand new Takeshi Saji R-2 Custom Damascus Wild Series Santoku 180mm (7 inch, Ironwood Handle) (https://japanesechefsknife.com/colle...ronwood-handle) for about USD 340 ($50 cheaper than JCK list price)

    I'm open for any other recommendation.


  2. #2
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    daveb's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum.

    Older and wider..

  3. #3

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    Jul 2013
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    I really like my Watanabe. It's just a joy to use. I've got a Ktip Kochi and a Itinomonn that I really enjoy too, but they're both currently out of stock. GL with the purchase!

  4. #4
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    saji is probably the best out of the 3 listed in ur post. many many choices out there imo.

  5. #5
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    I suggest the Watanabe 180 gyuto with an upgraded handle: http://www.kitchen-knife.jp/pro/gyuto.htm

    Stainless clad aogami and a great grind.

    For a detailed review, see https://japaneseknifereviews.wordpre...and-watanabee/
    The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pensacola Tiger View Post
    I suggest the Watanabe 180 gyuto with an upgraded handle: http://www.kitchen-knife.jp/pro/gyuto.htm

    Stainless clad aogami and a great grind.

    For a detailed review, see https://japaneseknifereviews.wordpre...and-watanabee/
    +1 !!



    The ZDP-189 is a stainless steel so no rusting issues, but it's been said to be one of the more difficult steels to sharpen.

    IMO a gyuto is more versatile than a santoku.

    The Yoshikane SKD could be a good choice. It's semi stainless with stainless cladding. Really easy to sharpen, holds an edge well and is really clean cutter with a good profile. Doesn't have damascus, but the hammer finish is nice.
    http://www.epicedge.com/shopexd.asp?id=85672

  7. #7
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    I'd suggest you forget the King stone and get this.
    http://www.toolsfromjapan.com/store/...oducts_id=2055

    I haven't used it but it comes highly recommended often. It's affordable and efficient. The King is fine, but not the best option for SS knives. It's slow and wears out fast.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaVa View Post
    +1 !!



    The ZDP-189 is a stainless steel so no rusting issues, but it's been said to be one of the more difficult steels to sharpen.

    IMO a gyuto is more versatile than a santoku.

    The Yoshikane SKD could be a good choice. It's semi stainless with stainless cladding. Really easy to sharpen, holds an edge well and is really clean cutter with a good profile. Doesn't have damascus, but the hammer finish is nice.
    http://www.epicedge.com/shopexd.asp?id=85672
    I have read that ZDP-189 is technically semistainless (and is tecnically a cast iron rather than a steel) even with 20% Cr because the huge amounts of carbon bind much of the Cr up in carbides, so the free Cr is relitavely low. Could be wrong about that.

    Having said that, I've never had reactivity issues with any other semistainless steels. Yes, they will patina heavily and lose their edge if left soaking in water overnight (it wasn't my fault!) but no rust per se. Not sure if a tropical, maritime environment changes the liklihood of rust, though.

    +1 on the Yoshi.

    +1 on the gyuto over santoku.

    I'd also like to try Watanabe.
    Looking for a signature that won't land me in trouble

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by inzite View Post
    saji is probably the best out of the 3 listed in ur post. many many choices out there imo.
    any special reason for that? saji also the most expensive on the list. i consider that due to local purchase (meet up without need to pay import tax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Pensacola Tiger View Post
    I suggest the Watanabe 180 gyuto with an upgraded handle: http://www.kitchen-knife.jp/pro/gyuto.htm

    Stainless clad aogami and a great grind.

    For a detailed review, see https://japaneseknifereviews.wordpre...and-watanabee/
    looks good. i also like rustic look on the knife. i saw they also selling santoku, but at 165 and slightly more expensive than gyuto (21000 vs 19000 yen). will definitely consider it.

    Quote Originally Posted by JaVa View Post
    +1 !!



    The ZDP-189 is a stainless steel so no rusting issues, but it's been said to be one of the more difficult steels to sharpen.

    IMO a gyuto is more versatile than a santoku.

    The Yoshikane SKD could be a good choice. It's semi stainless with stainless cladding. Really easy to sharpen, holds an edge well and is really clean cutter with a good profile. Doesn't have damascus, but the hammer finish is nice.
    http://www.epicedge.com/shopexd.asp?id=85672
    Good to hear zdp no rusting issue. as for yoshikane, its back ordered 4-9 months, not going to wait for that long if im going to wait, i might end up another knife in the middle of waiting, maybe a nakiri lol.

    Quote Originally Posted by JaVa View Post
    I'd suggest you forget the King stone and get this.
    http://www.toolsfromjapan.com/store/...oducts_id=2055

    I haven't used it but it comes highly recommended often. It's affordable and efficient. The King is fine, but not the best option for SS knives. It's slow and wears out fast.
    definitely consider this. thanks. i alway saw naniwa as the most recommended stone, but it is not cheap.
    btw, suehiro cerax got the option of combination stone and individual stone at the same price, just slightly heavier 0.1kg. i guess thats a better option right?


    Quote Originally Posted by Nemo View Post
    I have read that ZDP-189 is technically semistainless (and is tecnically a cast iron rather than a steel) even with 20% Cr because the huge amounts of carbon bind much of the Cr up in carbides, so the free Cr is relitavely low. Could be wrong about that.

    Having said that, I've never had reactivity issues with any other semistainless steels. Yes, they will patina heavily and lose their edge if left soaking in water overnight (it wasn't my fault!) but no rust per se. Not sure if a tropical, maritime environment changes the liklihood of rust, though.

    +1 on the Yoshi.

    +1 on the gyuto over santoku.

    I'd also like to try Watanabe.
    when i read here, i definitely can see the love to gyuto than other knifes. but wifey still prefer santoku. unless i get a gyuto for myself and a nakiri for her. but thats will start of the never ending journey

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by yukita View Post
    unless i get a gyuto for myself and a nakiri for her. but thats will start of the never ending journey
    Yep. Now you get it!

    Looking for a signature that won't land me in trouble

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