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Opinions on an upgrade from the Shun Classic series?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Just wondering what the consensus on an upgrade from the Shun Classic series would be. A little history to hopefully aid those who will reply.

I started with a set of Mercer knives when I graduated culinary school years ago. They were decent knives for what they were, but as I gained experience and money for nicer knives I upgraded. My next purchase was a set of Wusthof classic Ikon knives. They were very good knives as well. Then about 5 years ago I bought a Shun Classic Series Santoku and fell in love with Shun knives. I now own several Shun knives. I work as an Executive Sous Chef and I do a lot of veg prep, etc. Needless to say my knives and I get a workout every day.

So, I now am looking to upgrade my knives. As said above, I love Shun knives. I know many on here do not like Shun knives, but I get ~60% discount from Shun. I am not 100% set on buying a new set from Shun however. I have considered knives from Konosuke, Takeda, Saji, and others. I really am just looking to upgrade.

I do like the D shape of Shun handles. Others may not, but it fits my hand nicely and is conformable for me. As for those who say it is not ambidextrous, well I can't cut with my left hand anyhow. I do like japanese style knives over western (German) style. I would like to purchase a Gyuto, a kiritsuke, a Yanagi-ba, and several others. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
post #2 of 5

@highdesertchef welcome to Cheftalk!

 

Shun has better series than the Classic.  Regardless of cost, the problem with the Classic series is their chefs knife is too short with too much belly.  With 60% discount from Shun, consider the blue steel kiritsuke, IMO the best knife they make.   It's not single bevel like actual kiritsuke (usuba / yanagiba hybrid), more like it is a double beveled kiritsuke shaped gyuto. 

 

For gyuto I would say look at Japanese Knife Imports offerings.  Gesshin Uraku and Gesshin Ginga are no nonsense cutting machines.  Kochi is a thicker but thin behind the edge cutter that I like a lot, maybe my favorite non custom knife.  Jon is very helpful on the phone and he'll give you recommendations on knives without being pushy or selling.  He knows a lot about knives and stones even ones that are not his.

 

About yanagiba, if this is your first, I would say buy the Gesshin Uraku from JKI or the Korin Shiro Ko because single bevels require special sharpening to open the knives up, then you can just follow their sharpening.  These vendors do that opening for you.  PS if you act fast, korin has 15% off knife sale in december and 10% industry discount

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Anyone?
post #4 of 5

There is a world of difference going from Shun Classic to a Konosuke.  The Kono HD is a lazer with great geometry and an excellent semi-stainless steel.  The Takeda is lazer thin (aside from the questionable grind they have shown for a while and seem to be in the process of changing) and can take a very acute edge and hold it.  There are a number of good choices in Aogami Super of course.  Hiromoto is one mentioned a lot lately as they are no longer being manufactured and have acquired the mystique.

 

SR-15 is a super alloy (CPM technology) and the Akifusa has very good geometry all around, JKI offers an apparently identical knife, not much else available in this alloy yet.  Another super alloy is HAP40, again not much available, CKTG occasionally has some stock.  These alloys are finer-grained than white steel, have excellent edge stability up to 12dg/side and unmatched edge holding here.

 

There are far more expensive knives than such as these but I have never had the impression they are worth the price.

 

I'll second everything Millions said.

 

 

Said

post #5 of 5

I think Xmas wiped out everything CKtG had in stock!  Their cupboards are lookin' pretty bare at the moment.

"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
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"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
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