Ok, new to this forum but have lurked for some time. I am trying to decide which chef/gyoto to get my sister for a present. Her knives are horrendous. These are the criteria that I have come up with: 1) stainless steel...she would not be into the upkeep of the others. 2) western handle 3) she likes chef knives on the shorter side with 8" sort of being the max length 4) she would not be sharpening them herself except for a quick swipe on the steel (whether steel or ceramic) she would have to send them out to be sharpened. 5) she is not an avid cook but really enjoys working with good items whether it be a saucier or fry pan-she will notice the difference. 6) with the fact she will be sending out the knife to be sharpened, I should also not that she lives abroad in thailand and does not have readily available local knife sharpeners. (In fact, she took her wusthoffs somewhere and the sharpened the wrong side and completely changed the line of it so it was more of a hook--they use that for vegetables!) 7) as to knife skills, she doesn't exactly have a firm grip on that yet but is willing to learn. She uses the pinch grip properly but does wedge things sometimes but I suspect that is more due to the knife than the operator. this equates to not getting a super fragile knife.
I started out looking at the Ken Onion Shun as she had seen it and really liked it...but she did not demo it. But then she has mostly german knives so I looked at the wusthoff ikon classic as she has a couple of these; and the schaaf. As for the japanese knives western handle I was looking at the Mac Pro with dimples, Hattori HD 7", or the misuno ux10 7". (she thinks 8" is large.) Finally I got overwhelmed and decided to post. :)
Any thoughts pros or cons of the above knives given the parameters? spending range 100-160. thanks!