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Advice needed on a good quality carving knife

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

I'm an amateur cook, with something of a passion for "good quality" tools (whether they're hammers and chisels or cook's knives!).


I want to get a good quality "last a lifetime" carving set. I'm not brilliant at sharpening - I can restore an edge with a steel, but not so handy with the whetstone, so want something that will keep its edge.


I'm torn between carbon and stainless steel. Carbon seems easier to sharpen (I'm not fussed about getting a patina/marks) but reading up it seems like the laminated stainless steel knives are just as good these days.


I also want something that "looks nice", and have a budget of around $200 for the set (I want to get a fork, too).


Shortlist so far is the Sabatier Elephant master carver (http://www.greatfrenchknives.com/carving.html) in stainless, the Sabatier Yatagan (http://thebestthings.com/knives/sabatiercarbon.htm) in carbon, the Wusthof Ikon (http://www.amara.co.uk/products/classic-ikon-2-piece-carving-set?amss=v8&utm_source=GoogleBase&utm_medium=organic) or maybe Henkels.


Have also thought about the Laguile carving sets, but they seem to vary in price / quality so I'm not sure how you know if you're getting something decent, or just paying for the style.


Any thoughts / experience / suggestions greatly appreciated!



post #2 of 3

Any and all of the sets you're considering would be excellent for your purposes.  I gather you'll only use your carving set a few times a year, want something which works, and packs a little prestige.


Carving knives do get dull, though and even if you reserve them for ceremonial occasions they'll need more than a steel now and then. 


I gather you don't want to get into the nuances of sharpening.  Consequently I'm going to suggest something like one of the better Chef's Choice electrics, which can take care of all your knives and is extremely easy to learn and convenient to use; or a Minosharp two or three stage pull-through.


An alternative, which I suspect is right up your alley, is buy a Shun Classic set.  While I'm not a Shun fan by any means, most of my objections don't apply to the carving knife (at least not if you're right handed).  The Shun Classic Carving set is quite pretty, perfect for your purposes, includes a matching fork, etc.  PLUS, you get free lifetime sharpening. 



post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Thanks BDL!


I've bitten the bullet and gone for a Wustho Ikon Classic - I found a deal at a clearance place that had a really good price.


Sharpening knives drives me crazy - I feel like I should be good at it, as I can sharpen chisels and planes no problem, but can't do knives! I can do a half decent job with a steel, but once it's got beyond that I'm hopeless! I guess an electric sharpener may be OTT for what I need, but the Minosharp looks promising. I'd seen a similar Wusthof pull through at around twice the price - am I just paying for the label and the pretty looks with one of these! (http://www.google.co.uk/products/catalog?q=wusthof+sharpener&oe=UTF-8&cid=12055099607137675063&ei=VNO6TryIAdHY4wbeqdS_CA&ved=0CAwQrhI)



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