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Advice on which brand Santoku knife to purchase

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello, I am hoping someone would be able to direct me in the right path on a good Santoku knife the purchase. I am vegan, so I do a lot with vegetables and cutting up tempeh, and other fake meat substitutes. I would like to keep it at around $200 if that's possible. If I can go lower, then by all means! Also, I generally cook in bulk, so anything that wouldn't tire my hands out would be nice.



post #2 of 9

You can't go wrong with a MAC. Definitely within your price range and it's great quality.

post #3 of 9

are you sure you really want a santoku? a gyuto / chef knife would be really more all purpose.



post #4 of 9

In general, santokus don't get a lot of love around here.  Yes, a chef's or gyuto can do everything a santoku can, and some things better, for those who are comfortable and have the skills.  They also got very trendy on a lot of cooking shows, and I think that contributes somewhat to the anti-santoku climate.  It's good to stop to consder whether that's a good fit for your needs--it might be, or it might not.  You know better about this, or perhaps could elaborate on why you're interested in a santoku so people can give you advice.


There are times when I prefer a smaller board and/or a smaller knife.  The MAC is generally regarded as quite good.  I recently purchased the Hiromoto AS antoku.  It cuts REALLY well.  It's thinner than my Konosuke gyuto (which is itself considered a laser).  It has a carbon steel core, so it does need some extra care, but most of the surface is clad with stainless, reducing the burden of this care, and meaning there is a much smaller surface area to react with foods.  The price is a bit less than the MAC Pro, but both of those are well below your max price.  (I have used the MAC Pro, and it was a good knife, but it's REALLY fun to feel the Hiro just glide through food!)

post #5 of 9
Nothing wrong with santokus in general.
I must agree, some are very flat and have an obtuse tip.
The santokus I love most have a profile quite similar to some gyutos. See the Takeda gyutos.
They have a usable tip and some slight belly. Most are wide which is never a problem to me. Don't look at the name but see the profile.
The Hiromoto 190 is a terrific performer, gyuto like, just a little wider than you would expect with its length. Especially with a clad blade very welcome. It allows you to free a lot of the core and keep it very thin behind the edge. You may remove clad without compromising general geometry and food release.
AS is a great steel you should give a try. It is aggressive at any edge and sharpens easily.
post #6 of 9
If you prefer a santoko, I would also suggest looking at a Kasumi. Nice steel, very well finished. It's delivered with an excellent edge and is easy to sharpen. I don't use it often but it's the only santoko I still own. All the others have been givin away after being sharpened .
post #7 of 9

OK. I don't know, but I've got no problemmo with santoku knives. I will agree with toddnmd though that they don't get any love here. I love the ones that I have and use them all the time. I know I'll get some noise here, but I'm a big boy, I can take it. Here are some suggestions. They are inexpensive, you can beat/sharpen the bageebies out of them, they'll work just fine for a home cook type person. Or so I say anyway. LOL @ Me.  There are many other good brands and models. These however, are the ones I've used and can recommend. They are in no real order. The last one listed takes a bit more maintenance than the others. 


Tojiro Zen Santoku Knife   $69.95

Victorinox Forschner Fibrox Hollow Edge Santoku Knife   $24.99

Victorinox Forschner Rosewood Hollow Edge Santoku Knife   $49.95

NSF Commercial Hollow Edge Santoku Knife   $7.99

Tojiro DP Santoku Knife 170mm   $69.95

Tojiro Shirogami Santoku 165mm   $49.95

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.


"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

post #8 of 9

i used a wusthof santoku for the longest time until i finally moved to a 240mm gyuto, and now it's all i use.  i still like santoku (have masahiro mv-h santoku) but i never take it out of the knife roll.

post #9 of 9

I believe the design philosophy of a Santoku is something to do everything mediocre.  I'm just guessing you really don't want a big knife, and would be much happier with a Nikiri for virtually all of your soft vegetable work I bet.  If you are willing to put up with carbon steel you can get a basic finish Murry Carter for less than $250, as far as cutting goes you can't do significantly better for any price.  And many very good ones for half that or less of course.


Regardless the question typically asked here is whether you'd prefer stainless, semi-stainless or carbon?  If you are not preparing a lot of highly corrosive stuff like onions, tomatoes and citrus, then maybe you'd easily tolerate carbon's extra maintenance.


Along with that, how are your sharpening skills, to what legths are you willing to go/invest here or how do you intend to keep the knife sharp?

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