I've found this forum recently and there's a wealth of information that has been very enlightening. Basically I'm about to move on my own and start my own kitchen. Part that kitchen will be a nice set of knives. I cook almost every day so I've been itching to get knives with a good blades. By the way I apologize that this will be a bit long of a post, but I figure I my as well lay out all my thoughts to try and answer any questions people may have.
My brother has a Shun 6" chef knife which so far has been the best knife I've tried. I've tried Wustof, but I liked the Shun more. As I'm sure many people were, I was turned onto Shun by Alton Brown. So I've basically been sold on the idea of getting Japanese knives. One attractive feature of the Shun brand to me is their lifetime sharpening.
Anyways, after reading through this forum a bit it sounds like there are many other alternatives to Shun which may be nicer for the same price or not much more. Here is where I could use some guidance. I already know the style of knives I'd like, but I'm not very familier with the differences in steel and quality of the various brands. The Hattori FH series looks pretty interesting from what I've read and am looking to that series as a possibility.
Here are the knives I'm looking to buy along with a few notes....
Essential knives I'd like to get
- 8in chef knife (Maybe a 10in, but I've been using an 8 and I don't see much reason to go larger for now)
- bread knife
- paring knife (I don't use these often, but they're nice to have around when the chef's knife is too large)
Less essential knives I'd like to get
- serrated utility (For tomatoes, but if the chef is sharp enough maybe I don't need this)
- santoku (I like slicing a lot, but this isn't a good for mincing and a chef knife slices fine for the most part)
- slicing (for fish mainly, sashimi or removing skin)
As another note, I'm left handed. Now, I've read several lefties on here that don't have problems with right handed knives, but when I tried a left handed knife it was a glorious experience so I'd like to get left-handed knives.
So the big question. What am I willing to spend. Currently, my budget is around $1000 for get all the knives I mentioned above from Shun. Not necessarily all at once, but my intention is to probably get all of those styles at some point. However, if a different brand which may be more expensive but higher quality I'm definitely interested.
Thanks for reading all of this, I realize this post was rather long, but I figure the more research I can do that happier I'll be in the end!
Thanks for any advice!