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Berghoff knives

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Anyone using these at all out there? I just bought a 9" & 6" Chef's knife to go along with my Wusthoff Santoku which I love. The price of Wusthoff is what kept me from adding those.

Oddly enough, while making a sales call on what I thought was a potential customer, I ended up having them sell me something!! The price of the knives was amazing and I liked the idea they were German steel, as I prefer German blades. Also, the blade and handle are one piece with a rubberized handle bonded over the handle portion of the mold. They had others which were even less expensive but they had bolted handles which I didn't want.

The weight is good and I worked with them both last night in dinner prep and the performance is good.

Anyone else had experience with this brand? Your thoughts on adding more to the collection or just go back, pay the price, and get Wusthoff?

I looked at past threads but it really didn't give me the info I was looking for.

Thanks for the input! I truly value all your opinions!
post #2 of 16
Berghoffs fall squarely into the "you get what you pay for," category. For people who make a big deal out of knives, they're "a lot of knives for the money," and not "a lot of knife for the money."

Don't let the words "German steel" fool you. The Germans, bless their hearts, make plenty of bad steel. In fact, even their "good" steel isn't very good compared to what's available from US, Swedish and Japanese foundries. They also make their share of shoddy merchandise. To call Bergoffs shoddy, or "cheap crap," would be too harsh. But at best they're only one step removed.

File that under, "you asked," and forget it.

So far, you've established that you're comfortable using them with the factory edge. If you still like them after you've run through a few maintainenance/sharpening cycles (however you do that), you'll have your own opinion and mine won't mean anything.

Bottom line: You weren't a sucker. They're not Masamotos, but they're not Chef Tony either. I'd be interested to know what you think in another six months.

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks.. it's the info I was looking for. To put it in perspective... they are better than the others we had 'before' I got into cooking. The goal is to have a full set of Wusthoff as I love Solingen steel blades!

I'll let you all know what I think in 6 months. As for sharpening, I do it like my grandmother did.. honing steel. My mothers parents were German; father Italian. I cook Italian but my German grandmother's kitchen skills are what I follow. She could cut, dice and keep a kitchen cleaner than any chef I ever met and was just a farm girl!

Thanks again BDL.. I didn't mind the blunt opinion... it's what I wanted: the truth.
post #4 of 16
Glad you weren't put off. Talk to me before you start buying more Wusthof. Wusties are wonderful knives in their own way, very tough, with excellent handles and outstanding fit, finish and good-looks. But there are any number of better handling knives which take and keep a sharper edge for the same or less money. It's all about trade-offs, so it's good to go into it with your eyes open.

Also... If and when you decide to drop some serious change on knives, there are much better ways to sharpen than on a steel. A steel can keep an edge true, but it cannot produce one which is simultaneously both sharp and fine -- things which make prepping more pleasant. You don't have to go the big PITA route of multiple stones and steels. There are several, reasonably priced, more convenient and just or almost as effective methods. It's a good idea to suit the tools to the task, so wait for the "real" knives if that's what's on your master agenda.

post #5 of 16


I am a culinary student (pending graduation May 2012).  What would be your suggestion for a good knife?  I have the knives the school provided but I would like to "upgrade" my set.  Any suggestions?

post #6 of 16
  • We're talking chef's knife, right?
  • Western handle?
  • How much do you want to spend? 
  • Do you see it as primarily a line knife?  Or will you be using at home?
  • How good a sharpener are you now?
  • Are you willing to commit the time and money it takes to get good?


Some generic recommendations:

  • Richmond Artifex (The Artifex is to chefs' knives what Forschner is to most other profiles.  The most knife you can get for the least money.  Disclosure:  I have a commercial relationship with Mark Richmond in that I do some paid writing CKtG)
  • Fujiwara FKM
  • Tojiro DP
  • MAC Pro
  • Masamoto VG


Some generic "to avoid" recommendations:

  • Forschner Fibrox or Rosewood (lousy profile on their chef's knife; need too much steeling; almost all of their non-chefs' knives are great)
  • Shun -- any of their chef's knives (bad profiles, plus a lot of other stuff)
  • Global -- any of their chef's knives (bad edge holding, problematic handles)
  • Any laser for use on the line (too sensitive to torquing and bending if you don't already have extremely good skills and are working in a hurry).



post #7 of 16


What is your opinion on Le Sabatier knives.  I grew up using their carbon steel knives, like them and understand how to maintain them.  But am looking to purchase a few new knives and am trying to figure out if I like them because they're good, or just because I'm used them...


post #8 of 16

Sabatier isn't the name of a single manufacturer, but a great many manufacturers.  For a couple of centuries the name was very much regional (Thiers/Bellvue), but in the last century has been licensed to manufacturers as far from central France as China.  When you buy a Sabatier you want to make sure you buy from one of the quality makers. 


I prefer French chef's knife profiles to German, but everything considered if I were buying a stainless, European made chef's it would probably be one of the streamlined Germans (like Wusthof Ikon or Messermeister) because of their better quality control and because German stainless -- for all its mediocrity -- is slightly better than French. 


But that's stainless.  I quite like traditional Sabatier carbons, and own enough to count them as a collection.  For many years they were the heart of my active knife set.  "Quite like" isn't quite right.  Love, love, love them.



post #9 of 16

Oh my gosh I had no idea!  I always thought they were simply a brand of French knives!  Well thanks for the info, and I'm glad I'm not alone in my love of the carbon steel.  I think I will stick with it, why mess with success?  Thanks again.



post #10 of 16



What do you think of Henkel knives? Are they worth investing in?  I need a new set of knives for home use..


Much thx!

post #11 of 16
The German made Zwillings / Henckels are extremely well finished, well made, and incredibly well supported by the manufacturer. In terms of quality they're as good as any of the other top German made knives like Viking, Messermeister or Wusthof. I don't like German type knives, so the German Henckels aren't worth their (fairly high) prices to me; but if they're the sort of knife you like, you're not going to find better quality or value with another brand.

post #12 of 16


In my family we have always used Arcos, they are Spanish steel, it's a nitrogenated steel patented by the brand, I have not tried many more brands but this nitrogenated steel needs less sharpen than normal knives. The brand is among the oldest knife producers worldwide.


Have you tried them? What is your opinion?

post #13 of 16

And I agree that Berhoffs are nothing of the other world, still they BBQ sets are really worth, I guess if you bbq profesionally there is better stuff, but they are pretty cool for home and quite complete.

post #14 of 16

I was emaning the high end Arcos, the Kioto colection is the one I'm considering to buy, my uncle (chef) uses this one at home and he loves it he has also jamon set and the santoku knife

post #15 of 16

FL Italian's concern about the cost of Wusthof's might be somewhat less of a problem, depending on the line of Wusthof knives looked at.


Two weeks ago, at the going-out-of-business sale (in Receivership) of City Kitchens in downtown Seattle, I purchased among other things a 12" Wusthof Pro line chef's knife.  The listed price at City Kitchens was $56, with everything left in the store being half-off (or $28).  Since I didn't have anything as big as a 12" chef's knife, I thought it might be a useful and inexpensive way to add a long and new Wusthof knife to my galley (as well as a long knife to practice using on my Edge Pro Apex sharpener).  


From the look and feel of the knife, it appears to be Wusthof's alternative to Victorinox/Forschner Fibrox for the commercial kitchen market (another tipoff is the "NSF" stamp, for "National Sanitary Foundation").  The blade is stamped, not forged, and the handle is a molded "ergo" handle.  It appears that this might be a considerably more budget alternative to the Classic line, the Ikon line or some of the other top line Wusthof's.




(1)  The steel type stamped (engraved?) on the blade is "X50CrMoV15".  Also prominently stamped on the blade is "Solingen, Germany".  The blister packaging for the knife included a descriptive sheet, which again specified that the knife came from Solingen.  Based on the "X50CrMoV15", and the "Solingen" references, I am presuming that the PRO line knives were made at Wusthof's Solingen factory, and were (presumably) heat treated to the same hardness level as the other "X50CrMoV15" knives.


I do recognize that BDL is not necessarily a fan of German knives, but the Wusthof PRO line of knives probably gives the least expensive version of Wusthof's primary quality blade steel.


(2)  Blade Thickness:  As stamped steel, the blade is thinner than a forged blade, which is one of the favorite points for the Victorinox/Forschner.  Wusthof does taper the blade, both along the face plane of the blade, and along the spine of the blade.(For what it's worth, my measurement by dial caliper of the spine of the knife just at its junction with the molded handle showed the blade to be in the 0.100 to 0.102 inch range, which converts out to just about 2.54 to 2.56 mm)


(3)  Price:  The Wusthof PRO line chef's knives are priced at slightly more than the Victorinox/Forschner Fobrox Handled knives, with the 8" Wusthof PRO chef knife at about $30 and the 10" chef's knife at about $33 to $35.  If you want a Wusthof knife without the high price, this appears to be the budget champ.




(1) Handle Size:  The handle for the PRO line is not very small - in fact it's big. (I'm comparing it to my Tojiro DP F-808 210 mm western handle Chef's Knife, which has had numerous comments about its large size - and the PRO handle feels to me to be even bigger)..


(2) Handle Fit:  The handle is ergonomically shaped, so that it's intended for a full-handed grip, with the hand held back from the blade. Held that way, it's comfortable.  This knife is awkward at best for a pinch grip.  (A pinch grip can be done, but it's a completely different feel from the standard western-style rounded box style handle pinch grip).


(3) Blade Sharpening:   The molded handle, with its "bolster" creates a pain-in-the-neck when sharpening at the heel of the blade.  There is a 1/4 inch clearance from the bottom of the "bolster" to the projection back of the blade edge.  However, the "bolster" is a full half-inch wide at the heel of the blade.  That will make blade sharpening using any stones very awkward.  The curvature of the "bolster" from the spine to the heel of the blade also is also awkward using the Edge Pro.  Whether there are similar problems with electric sharpeners remains to be tested.


One potential saving grace is that the "bolster" and the rest of the handle are plastic, rubber or other relatively soft materials, which appear to be easily removed or modified by utility knife (no special tooling required).


(4)  Availability - try as I might to find a chain of brick and mortar stores carrying it, the Wusthof PRO line of knives appears to only be available online.


Hope that might be of consideration.


Galley Swiller


(One additional note: City Kitchens is now completely closed)

post #16 of 16

I created account in order to say THANKS for this wonderful thread and hats off to people like BDL. Needed the exact info provided here and will continue to lurk for new discoveries. 


May your food always taste as you wanted it to.

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