ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Knife Reviews › help needed with choice of Gyuto
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

help needed with choice of Gyuto

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

I’ve been reading a lot of the posts about knives and knife choices and learned a lot from it.

The main thing is that a lot of it is personal choice.

 

Despite that, I could still do with a bit of help. I’m trying to make up my mind about which knife to buy.

 

I’m pretty sure I’ll buy it from www.japanesechefsknife.com as they have a whetstone I’m interested in buying, so I’ll have to pay shipping costs anyway (This is the JCK Special Combination Whetstone (#1000 and #4000))

 

The knife would mainly be used for cooking at home.Quite a divers range of dishes, from Asian style to French and anything in between.

 

I own a Global Chef’s knife at the moment. Quite happy with it, but wouldn’t mind another good (better) knife. It might also turn out to be a birthday present for my dad instead (His 80th in Feb!!!)

 

I’m looking at a Gyuto as I think that would be the most useful of the Japanese knives.

 

What would be the material to go for?

I understand that carbon steel takes a bit more maintenance, but would be easier to sharpen?

 

My sharpening skills are not very great at the moment, but are improving every day. And that will hopefully take a flight once I get my whetstone!

Other sharpening tools: honing steel and ceramic steel.

 

Bevels: What do you notice about this in the actual use of the knife?

Is it easier to sharpen a 50/50 bevel than an asymetric one?

 

Knives within budget (some only just)

JCK

Kagayaki basic (double bevel 70/30)

Kagayaki VG-10 (double bevel 50/50)

Carbon-next (double bevel 60/40)

 

Misono

Molybdenum steel (double bevel 70/30)

Profesional Sweden steel series (double bevel 70/30)

440 series (double bevel 70/30)

 

Hiromoto

Temni-Jyuraku series (gingami no:3) (double bevel 60/40)

Temni-Jyuraku series (aogami super) (double bevel 60/40)

 

Kanetsugu

Pro-M (double bevel 50/50)

 

Fujiwara

FKM series (double bevel 70/30)

FKH series (double bevel 70/30)

 

All input will be greatly appreciated!


Edited by butzy - 12/11/10 at 12:34pm

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #2 of 24

"...Knives within budget (some only just) JCK Kagayaki basic (double bevel 70/30) Kagayaki VG-10 (double bevel 50/50) Carbon-next (double bevel 60/40) Misono Molybdenum steel (double bevel 70/30) Profesional Sweden steel series (double bevel 70/30) 440 series (double bevel 70/30) Hiromoto Temni-Jyuraku series (gingami no:3) (double bevel 60/40) Temni-Jyuraku series (aogami super) (double bevel 60/40) Kanetsugu Pro-M (double bevel 50/50) Fujiwara FKM series (double bevel 70/30) FKH series (double bevel 70/30)..."

 

This is a very eclectic choise at first glance, but nevertheless can be put into some sort of caterories to get an overview.

1/ First of all there are the non-stainless "carbon" knives; very variable hardness

Don't get impressed by the carbon yet, the carbon content of Japanese knives is mostly around... 1%, considered as a high level of carbon content. There's however no chromium in them to make them stainless or inoxidable (=rustresistant). You will have to clean them each and every time you cut with them!!! You cannot let them uncleaned in the sink, you need to clean them right away or they will start rusting. The positive side is that carbon knives can be sharpened to the highest norms, let me refrase; nothing cuts better. The cleaning versus the sharpness are the balance why you simply like or hate them. I love my Hiromotos (Aogami), but I hate my "naked" carbon slicer in white carbon steel. All carbon knives are highly affected by cutting acidic food such as citrusfruits and many other acidic food.

Your choises in this category are; Misono Sweden steel, Fujiwara FKH.

An outsider is the Hiromoto Aogami super. These knives are "packed" or clad as they say in a thin layer of stainless soft steel. Only a few millimeter carbon are visible at the cutting side. Same care as all carbon knives, but these don't rust that easy, they darken at first. Very hard steel. Incredible cutting capacity.

 

2/ The not-entirely-stainless knives

Mostly mystery steels, you know, the best marketing trick around is... selling mystery.

Your choise in this category; Carbonext Kagayaki. Too new to jump to conclusions.

 

3/ The stainless (inoxidables) knives.

Most Japanese stainless knives have also a "high" carbon content, but also around 14% of chromium which makes them rustresistant.

They also contain some other stuff in quite small contents; vanadium, molybdeen and cobalt.

Stainless steels are often categorized according to these additions. You could categorize them in order of their capacity of being hardened to certain levels. Most knives are presented with a Rockwell-hardness coefficient.

3A/ Stainless - Molybdeen/vanadium knives; Rockwell 57-58

No-nonsense knives of excellent quality. Lower pricerange. Need some experienced sharpening technique to perform to their best ability.

Your choises in these categories are; Misono molybdeen, Misono 440, Kanetsugu Pro-M, Fujiwara FKM. I'm not sure about the Kagayaki basic which is announced as VG1.

3B/ Stainless - Cobalt steel VG10; Rockwell 60-61

A step up compared to the moly knives in the previous category. Much tougher steel, longer edge retention. Very impressive cutting capacity.

Your choice in this category; Kagayaki VG10

3C/ Stainless - Gingami AKA GIN-3; Rockwell 60-61

Fabulous steel, somewhat a competitor at the same level of the cobalt steel. I would dare say a little pushed out of the market by the Cobalt steel (VG10)

Your choise in this category; Hiromoto Gingami

 

My choice for a homecook, as in best price/quality is VG10, and please, look also at the "Gekko" knives on JCK "Specials" page!!! Absolutely fabulous knives at an even more fabulous price!!! I love mine. Ditto for my Hattori HD in VG10. Look at the "What's new" link on JCK's website, you will see that Hattori HD knives are bestsellers month after month, since years... JCK's listing is my only subjective but reliable source of the appreciation of commercial Japanese knives; no hear saying, just facts.

 

Something to sharpen the appetite; Hattori HD 240mm and Gekko 210 mm, both VG10. The Gekko is sold under many other names by other retailers too. Their group name could be "tsuchime" knives, which means simply "hammered".

tsushime1.jpg

post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hi Chris,

Thanks a million for your reply, esp as you had to read through a post without paragraphs and the like. Managed to improve on that.

 

Every knife I use gets cleaned almost immediately. I don't leave them to soak, and I don't have a dish washer, so It's all cared for by hand.

I think the Carbon knives are my way to go!

 

After reading your mail, I would say that my choice has been narrowed down (a little bit) to

Misono Sweden steel,

Fujiwara FKH.

Hiromoto Aogami super

Kagayaki VG10

Hiromoto Gingami

 

and to a lesser extent:

Misono molybdeen,

Misono 440,

Kanetsugu Pro-M,

Fujiwara FKM

 

The Hattori HD knives are just a tad above budget.

 

Could you send me the link for the gekko knives as I can only find the Gekko Damascus ones which aren't cheap at all.

 

Does the whet stone I intend to buy do a proper sharpening job for all of the above knives?

During general usage, what do you notice of the different bevels?

 

Am I right in my assumption that the gyotu is the more versatile knife of the japanese collection (I'm used to 21 cm Chef's knives)

 

 

 

 

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #4 of 24
Thread Starter 

@ Chris: I must have been blind last night

.Found the web site with the Gekko knives.

 

I'm not too sure if I like the Damascus steel though. What are the advantages and disadvantages of Damascus steel?

 

I found another knive on the "what is new" page though, that might be interesting,  The Hiro gyuto VG10.

 

It's not easy to make a decission !!!!

 

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #5 of 24

The "Damascus" steel of your typical Japanese knife is just a cladding- it has no effect at all on performance and is just cosmetic (ie for looks).  A knife is clad for several reasons.  Sometimes a very hard steel is clad with a softer one; the hard core (or hagane) of the knife will take a keen edge and hold it for a long time while the softer cladding (or the jigane) adds some flex to the knife and can protect the core from rusting (assuming the hagane is carbon).  Another reason for cladding can be to save money since less of the core steel is needed.  Cosmetic reasons also apply as the public seems to equate the faux Damascus with quality.  In any event the suminigashi pattern of the "Damascus" adds some visual appeal to the finished product.

 

Apropos of nothing, many of the most highly regarded and expensive Japanese knives are honyaki, or "true forged."  These knives are mono-steel, or one block of steel, and differentially hardened.  It takes great skill to make a blade this way; it's easy to crack or break during forging.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #6 of 24

Hi Butzy, if you don't have a problem with carbons, then you should definitely go for these. I'm not the best person to advise on these, I'm more a stainless type of guy. There are many more people around here who can point to a perfect choice. The Misono Sweden especially and Fujiwara FKH carbons are known to be excellent choises; but again, that's second hand info from me.

 

The stone you chose is perfect for all kinds of knives.

The size of a knife is much more personnal preference. I'm also into 210 mm for it's agility.

post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 

I'm seriously considering the Fujiwara FKH as it is quite friendly priced, and relatively easy to sharpen.

Esp the last part is quite important to me as I'm still a sharpening novice.

 

The extra care is not a problem. I tread my current knives this way anyway (one of them is a very rust-prone old Henckel).

 

Does anyone here have any first hand experience with the Fujiwara FKH, both negative and positive??

How does it compare to the Misono Sweden steel and the Hiromoto Aogami super?

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #8 of 24

There are plenty of nice things to say about the FKH. but it's nowhere close to the same league as the Misono Sweden.  It's more than the difference between entry and professional-levels.  The FKH takes a very good edge easily and holds it well and is very well finished for the price. 

 

But... 

 

Unfortunately whoever makes the blade alloy (SKD-4) seems to leave a lot of sulfur or other impurities in it, because the the FKH will stink everytime it hits acid until the patina has a chance to stabilize -- about a month.  Even then, it will continue to color and leave a slight taste on acidic foods for a very long time. 

 

The Sweden is quite reactive but stabilizes very quickly.  You don't need more than forcing a patina or getting a baking soda regimen started.  The Sweden also has extremely good geometry, a great handle, and is beautifully engraved.

 

Other Japanese carbons in the same league are the Kikuichi Elite (carbon) and the Masamoto CT (best gemoetry of the bunch).  The Masamoto HC is a half step above, but significantly more expensive.  I'd put the HC in the category of "as good as you can get for any amount of money."  Whether or not it's worth spending that much for something that's only a tiny bit better -- if that -- is up to you.

 

In my opinion several carbon French Sabatiers perform as well the Sweden, Kikuichi, and CT.  They hold an edge quite well and can go as long as between sharpenings as the Japanese made knives, but will need frequent steeling -- something the Japanese blades don't need a much of.  In exchange for all that extra steeling you get easier sharpening, great geometry, great handles and better prices.  I particularly like K-Sabatier and Thiers-Issard Quatre Etoile Elephant, but American and European access to Sabatiers is different -- so I'm not going to do a rundown on all the good and bad brands.  If you have specific questions about specific Sabatiers, I can either answer them or not.

 

The Hiromoto AS is a different kettle of fish entirely.  It's good fit and finish for the money.  AS, the core steel, is pretty remarkable but you're not going to get significantly better performance compared to any of the better carbons already mentioned.  The handles are narrowish, if that matters to you.  I owned four of them a few years ago and didn't keep them because among other things I felt my Sabs have better geometry.  My experience aside, a lot of people really love the AS.

 

You have to evaluate knives within the context of sharpening and your own ability to sharpen.  These knives can all take GREAT edges, but your skill level and the quality of your kit will set the limits.  If you're not willing to spend the money on stones, or spend the time on sharpening, stay at the lower end of the price range.  There, I prefer Sabatier carbons to Fujiwara. 

 

BDL

post #9 of 24

The AS is nice because, as is the case with all gyutos, it doesn't have a full bolster.  I'll never own a knife with a full bolster again.  It may not matter to everyone, though.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 

So much good advice!!!!

And still I can't make a choice.

 

I'm now having second thoughts about carbon steel.

Are they really much easier to sharpen than the other knives?

Which is my main reason for going that route.

 

What I'm worried about is that I use lots of onions, tomatoes, lemon etc in my cooking.

And I've actually taken a good look at myself, I do clean the knife straight after cooking, but while I'm preparing food, it lies to the side for a couple of minutes, without wiping or anything.

 

Maybe I should only buy a whetstone and learn to sharpen properly before buying another knife (My current knives are a global chef (think g2), a victorinow 270 mm (tad too large for me), a victorinox fibrox 180 as well as a couple unknown brands.)

But it is so tempting to make use of the flat shipping rate and I feel I'm outgrowing the Global!!!

 

Decissions decissions decissions (pulling out hair)

 

Narrowing things down

 

1 - I just buy a whetstone and become a proficient sharper

2 - I buy a whetstone and new knife

    2a - carbon steel or different material

    2b - lower budget to try out the knife and upgrade later or go for something that will last and that I won't outgrow in a hurry

 

What is wisdom?

 

 

 

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #11 of 24

Well, carbon is a tad easier to sharpen but I find the difference to be overrated.  If you want to split the difference I think you'll find the Kagayaki CarboNext to be easier to sharpen than some stainless steels like VG-10 or SG-2 while still taking a great edge and affording good edge retention.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #12 of 24

Butzy, people don't necessarely buy things looking only at their assets and liabilities. The "other" factor is much more motivating to buy; let's call it the X-factor since that word became popular.

This is the reason why knives like these are so succesfull and outrageously expensive; http://www.nenohi.co.jp/en/you.html#sd_area 

I have so much knives right now and yet, I would still buy a Nenox S1...

Something you will cherish the rest of your life. People who make things like that cannot afford themselves to deliver junk! Quality is a hollow word, but in this case, outstanding quality is simply there.

I need to say that my age permits me to do and to buy whatever I want without any regret. Which is wisdom; buying with your mind or with your heart, and, which of the two gives more pleasure?

 

Excellent runner up; the Hattori FK with micarta handles? I bought these for my daughter a few years ago, she likes to cook too. Perfect knives for women too. They have the nicest handshaped (rounded) handles.

 

HattoriKF.jpg


Edited by ChrisBelgium - 12/15/10 at 4:22am
post #13 of 24

My heart aches at the sight of so many KF/FHs!  Sadly I sold mine; I loved it but I needed the money to chase The Next Big Thing.  One day I'll buy another 240mm FH gyuto...

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #14 of 24

Hattori FH, Nenox S1:

The Hattori FH (aka Forum Knife, and FWIW sold only by JCK) was a joint project involving a group of Knife Forum members, JCK and Hattori in an attempt to create the ultimate, Japanese made, stainless, western-style knife.  They did well.  The FH is very good indeed across most of the parameters I think are very important with a very good profile (not as good as a Sabatier, Masamoto or Konosuke, e.g.)  I don't think anyone's done VG-10 better; they certainly don't have the "tenacious burr" problem that some lesser VG-10s are known for. 

 

There are other western style, stainless knives as good, for instance the Tadatsuna Westerns.  And while VG-10 is certainly considered to be among the best stainless knife steels available, there's been some reassessment over the past couple of years. It no longer enjoys the same reputation as being in a class by itself as it once did. 

 

Bottom line on the FH:  Excellent edge characteristics, pretty and good handle, good ergonomics, graceful visuals wthout any excess ornamentation.  All in all an excellent knife, but you'd expect it to be excellent at the price.  There are plenty of knives which will cut onions just as well for a lot less money.  I like the Masamoto HC (wihch isn't stainless); Tadatsuna G3 (stainless) and Shiro#2 (carbon); and Kikuichi (formerly Ichimonji TKC and recent beneficiary of a huge price drop) better.  But that's opinion only, I'm not trying to make an objective judgment.   

 

In my (more objective) opinion the Nenox S1 knives are incredibly overpriced, offering no more performance than many other, less-expensive blades; including the FH or the far more reasonably priced Kikuichi TKC, MAC Pro and Masamoto VG.  I wouldn't trade my Konosuke HD wa-gyuto for two S1s even though you could darn near buy two Konosukes for one Nenox.  Pretty handles, though. 

 

Carbon vs Stainless:

Nearly all good carbon is significantly easier to sharpen and sharpens better than nearly all stainless.  However...  Without getting too deeply into the nuances of specfic alloys the better stainless used by Japanese manufacturers in their better knives goes a long way towards closing the gap.  Until you get into the exoctic carbons like White #1, V2C, etc., I think the principle benefit to carbon is bang for the buck.  

 

Carbon doesn't need much extra care, but usually needs it fairly immediately (there are ways to stretch that though).  From your description of your work habits I don't think carbon will present any problem for you -- as long as you're willing to accept that your knives won't stay "shiny new" for long. 

 

Based on the little I know about you, I don't think there's much to say one way or the other in terms of recommending carbon over stainless or vice versa.  It's more a matter of the specific knife than any particular alloy.  You can certainly get all the good ones plenty sharp if you care enough to do so.  

 

When people are looking to buy their first really good, stainless Japanese chef's knife, I most often recommend the MAC Pro and the Masamoto VG.  The MAC has the better handle, better support, and better stiffness.  The Masamoto has a slightly better overall feel and a profile as good as a Sabatier.  In carbon, the edge characteristics and handle of the Misono Sweden make it slightly better than the Kikuichi Elite or Masamoto CT; but none of them are quite as good (or as expensive) as a Masamoto HC. 

 

The Kikuichi TKC -- a semi-stainless HSS tool steel -- has a lot going for it as well, especially if you're a sharpening junky and interested in esoteric alloys.

 

Hope this helps,

BDL


Edited by boar_d_laze - 12/15/10 at 11:25am
post #15 of 24

It's a cryin' shame that the long awaited "vaporware" Hattori KF in Cowry-X never materialized.  Three years later I'd say it's a dead letter, though.  The closest I'll probably get to a KF/FH with better steel would be commissioning Devin Thomas or Butch Harner to make a copy of it in AEB-L or something.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #16 of 24

No question the Hattoris made by the actual hands of Hattori-san were lovely knives.  But good as it was, Cowry X is pretty much an idea whose time has passed.  Not only are there more user-friendly metallurgical powder alloys, you have to question their overall utility anyway.  The extra hardness is only worth so much.  Collecting is one thing and banging out mirepoix another. From a performance standpoint, the HSS tool steels are a lot more interesting to me.

 

BDL

post #17 of 24

I would agree with you 100%, BDL.  I'd love to see Hattori San make a version of the KF/FH in SRS-15, AEB-L or whatever mystery tool steel Ichimonji/Kikuichi/Kagayaki is using for the TKC/CarboNext.  Or the steel Aritugu uses in the A-type (especially now that the precise chemical composition has been "cracked").  Even ZDP might be interesting.  True, an uber-high hardness is more for bragging rights than practical utility, and can work against you if it's chippy.  But while Hattori is a virtuoso at heat treating VG-10, it's still a pretty vanilla steel at the price, especially considering how many superior options there are for less money.  The KF design inspires enough lust that I'll probably pick up another one as funds allow. But I find the TKC and Akifusa to be superior by a wide enough margin to relegate the KF to "drawer queen" status for the most part.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #18 of 24

BDL & Phaedrus, I read all the blabla on both the knifeforums and foodieforums too. I have only one thing to add; you cannot talk objectively about any product unless you have worked with it.

I can't count the number of superlatives used to discribe new things on these knifeforums, especially those surrounded by mystery; the latest coryfee is CarboNext. You both named all of the other recent ones, so I don't have to repeat the names. One of them strikes me the most; the supernatural Aritsugu A-type with it's outerworld superior hardness and, obviously, never seen (add 20 superlatives at the least) edge retention, has all the sudden lost the mystery touch, since a forummember had the steel analyzed. Let's see who's gonna buy another Aritsugu. It's HRC 58!!! Let me repeat that; it's totally average! My advice to people wanting to buy an "awesome" Aritsugu is to check the Fujiwara FKM's; they are HRC58 too... or, to quote BDL "There are plenty of knives which will cut onions just as well for a lot less money ". Well said BDL, I agree 100%!

post #19 of 24

Well, if you've done your homework Chris you'll see I have worked with the CarboNext.  It's a superb knife.  And since I own the Ichimonji version of the TKC I'm not completely talking out of my ass when I say they appear to be the same knife.  Yeah, "appear".  I haven't had it chemically analyzed, I'm going on the appearance, the feel on the stones, the way it cuts, the insider info I've heard and the way it tastes.  Yes, tastes.  Without repeating the names you're referring to I'm not sure why I'm being "called out" here.  The TKC?  I own one.  CarboNext?  I own that one, too.  I've also owned or currently own several Hattori's including the FH & HD and a Hiromoto AS.  Ditto for the Moritaka (not mentioned in this post).  I don't recall mentioning any knife I don't own or once owned, save the A-type.  And no, I can't imagine why the RC testing will deter future buyers.  We aren't all just parroting stats- we're basing it on experience with the knife.  I can't verify the RC of any blade I own, I have to go by the specs.  But that doesn't mean much when the rubber meets the road.  The A-type is well known for its edge retention capability.  I could dismiss the vast body of reviews simply because I don't own one that would be the height of hubris, IMO.

 

BTW, I assumed you know me from KF & FF, although you would know me by my Christian name there.  Although I don't wish to have it revealed here, surely you know who I am?

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #20 of 24

Correction:  The Moritaka isn't one I owned.  That one I just used for nine or ten days on a pass-around.  Apologies, I never intended to deceive anyone.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
post #21 of 24

I suppose anyone who's looking for first-hand information goes to forums like these and others. If I would want to buy a good knife, I would appreciate real info from people who at least have some personnal experience with the knives they are talking about. I understand now you are one of them. So, your opinion is greatly appreciated, believe me. Sorry if I thought otherwise, I admit I wrongly did. The thread about the Aritsugu steel on FF opened py eyes. So many people on the knofeforums thought this was a knife uncomparable to any other... right!

post #22 of 24

Chris,

 

No offense meant but you're making unfounded assumptions about which knives Phaedrus and I have and haven't used and not only drawing but promulgating unfounded conclusions. 

 

If it weren't self-evident that Phaedrus speaks from experience, he gave his word on it.  As for me, I try and be careful to say when my information comes from others and is not gained at least partly first hand, and hope my posts reflect that.  Case in point: I know the Aritsugu A from using my buddy's.  But the experience had its limitations because I'm a lefty and KC -- the owner -- profiled the knife very right-handed. 

 

With no intention to quarrel or compete and with all due respect, your reasoning: I bought this knife and I like it so you should buy it too has serious limitations itself.  Is the FKM you like so much really as good as the CarboNext? A Kikuichi TKC? A Masamoto VG?  You have no experience with the other knives, so based on your criterion you have no bases on which to draw a conclusion. 

 

More generally, I have problems with recommendations which are also testimonials because they are so often requests for validation rather than analysis based on broad experience and understanding.   One has to make sense of the cacaphony, or one ends up according the same respect to people who buy knives which never need sharpening as to those who actually know something about the subject.

 

Furthermore, I think you're missing a lot of the nuance and context of what's being said on FF regarding the Aritsugu A gyuto.  While the Aritsugu A is no longer the flavor of the month, nor KC's darling (which carries a lot of weight for quite a few people) it's still a good knife and still enjoys fairly good sales.  It is what it is. 

 

It was never more than a good knife which could be sharpened to very acute angle, hold a good edge and not collapse through one of KC's shifts.  It was never perfect and never the best answer to most chef's knife questions. The problem with the A was always the extensive re-profiling it took to make it work its best -- which frankly is beyond most folks' actual sharpening capabilities.  F&F were always mediocre.  The profile was never as good as Masamoto.  And nothing's changed, other than that the current general perspective is more clear-eyed. 

 

There are certainly people who believe in the myth of The Knife That Will Save The World.  Sadly, so far they have been mistaken every time.

 

BDL


Edited by boar_d_laze - 12/17/10 at 10:58am
post #23 of 24
Thread Starter 

@ chris, bdl, phaedrus

You have all given me very valuable information.

Thanks so much for this.

 

The end-choice will be a personal one as it reflects someone's character to a certain extent.

I've just been after as much technical information as possible, and as said, all of you have been a great help.

 

The more subjective info like looks, or the handle is nice has not been important in my initial decision making.

 

The way I work: I absorb about as much info as I can, then I make a short list, then it becomes more subjective.

In the end, neither of you can tell me if the extra expense for a knife is worth it for me.

You might have a certain idea though.

 

To get back to the thread I started:

I was going to ask the three of you what you would thought my choice would be, but then that would have been too much guess work (unless you read the foodie forum)

 

Anyway, at the moment I'm opting to buy the Fujiwara FKH, 240 mm Gyuto and the 1000/4000 whetstone.

 

Why this and why not one of the "better" knives?

I think this knife is still going to be an improvement on my current knives, it will be my first Carbon steel gyuto and it will be my first 240 mm knife.

Now to me it makes sense to go for a more economical choice, to check out if I do like carbon steel and if I prefer the 240 mm over the 210 knives. Plus, with my limited sharpening skills it gives me a good knife to practice on and if it turns out that I cannot learn how to sharpen, then at least I can put this into consideration buying my next knife in the future.

 

But that's just me.

 

What makes sense to me, doesn't necessarily apply to anyone else.

 

Again, all of your info has had an impact on my decision making process and again I like to thank all of you for your input!

 

And if you think I'm making a big mistake by going this route, then please let me know.

I'll only place an order somewhere in January, so tere is plenty time to change my mind :)

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad wine
---Anonymus---

Reply
post #24 of 24

I will mention one other thing- I live in a "knife desert" of sorts.  Very few of my coworkers have J-knives, and the ones that do mostly have Shuns.  Aside from my own knives, the only ones I've found in the possession of my fellow cooks were 2 Hattori HD's and a Masahiro gyuto.  Pretty slim pickings.  I've done some swaps & pass-arounds with members of other forums and guys I've met online, but for the most part if I wanna try something I've got to pony up the cash to buy it.  I suspect that, with a few exceptions, that's the situation for most people.  I've heard that SLT will provide a carrot for you to cut in store but they have few options on offer re J-blades.  If you're lucky enough to live near EE or Korin I doubt they'll let you bring an Ahi in to dissect.wink.gif  Sadly we're often stuck with learning the hard way.  Any clues we can get, even anecdotal evidence, rumor and downright innuendo is often better than flying blind.

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cooking Knife Reviews
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Knife Reviews › help needed with choice of Gyuto