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Whats a good Chefs Knife under 150$

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone!

I would like to get my father a Father's Day gift. He is a former chef amd has been to culinary school. And I'm just a waitress in high school. I have 150$ dollars to spend to get him a nice Chefs knife for him to use. He has (what i would say) a very good eye, and no 60$ knife is going to cut it (no pun intended). Any suggestions? I would preferably like to have it engraved.

Thanks in advance to those that help.
post #2 of 24
Since your father is a former chef I expect him to have his own preferences we do not know. I would choose a Misono -- these are quite middle of the road and have an impeccable fit and finish. Get them with korin.com or japanesechefsknife.com
post #3 of 24

Is there any reason you can't tell us exactly what he is using now, and whether he prefers stainless or not? 




post #4 of 24

I've found that Victorinox knives are the best. They're high end and commercial so they work well and have a nice look.

post #5 of 24
Originally Posted by Jennifer W View Post

I've found that Victorinox knives are the best. They're high end and commercial so they work well and have a nice look.

With all due respect Jen, none of the regulars around here would consider Victorinox high-end, or even mid-level.  They are not even entry-level so far as Japanese knives are concerned.  I have a 10" Vic chefs, and even though it fills the bill around here as a beater-knife, after I did a couple hours work thinning the blade and reshaping the handle, I personally would not typically consider it as a birthday gift for a present (what juxtaposition) or former pro chef, whether he was my father or not.




post #6 of 24
o, snap!
post #7 of 24

Understand what you write, Rick, but the OP never indicated a Japanese knife orientation.  And there are some well-known chefs who have been seen using Vics, Wusties and other European knives.  Also a few who have been seen using Shuns.  :o


o, snap again?  :lol:

post #8 of 24

I think it's a stretch to say anything is the BEST.   You can't really say something is the best without setting some criteria for judging, and everybody values different things.  If price/performance is your thing, it is very good, maybe used to be the great.  Now that it is only $15 less than a Tojiro DP, maybe it's not even the best budget knife.  I'd say my $8 carbon chinese cleaver is better: harder, easier to sharpen, more knuckle clearance, more rectangular, rounder handle...  See I can say anything is the best without qualifications but it's meaningless if you don't like cleavers.

post #9 of 24

Well Brian what you say of Vics and other European knives is certainly true, and you might also have added that some chefs use nsf knives as well.  The question arises though, "what is the relevance here?"


The OP is, after all, buying a birthday present for her dad, and has given herself a budget of $150, stating that a $60 knife (already out of Vic territory as you can buy the 10" Rosewood online all day long for $45 delivered) was not going to cut it.


And though I hadn't got around to indicating it yet myself, it is so very very obvious to any who've been around here for a short while that when you're talking about getting your bang for the buck out of that kind of money it is almost invariably going to be with a Japanese knife, even if not a Shun.  For instance, should the OP spend $150 dollars on a Wusty Ikon, only to wind up with much the same low-end steel as is used in the Vic?


Then there is Million's point of personal value, which is why it would be helpful if we had an idea of the dad's take on that.  Knives are, after all, a very personal thing with many and perhaps most chefs.


Say SB, since Brian and I are several generations removed from the particular vernacular, I'd like to check something with you:  Should either one of us have tried to fit "oh snap!" in here somewhere?




Edited by Rick Alan - 5/11/15 at 1:11pm
post #10 of 24

Sorry about omitting nsf knives.


I don't know what is "relevant" and what really has "no relevance" here.  I'm not a mind reader and the OP hasn't answered your very good question earlier asked.  Without more information further discussion by any of us is mostly speculative.  So I'm puzzled a bit about what is obvious or relevant... so I made my comments based on my interpretation of obvious and relevant.  What is "very very obvious" is that you have your well justified opinions and preferences.  I respect that despite having differing opinions at times. What is not so obvious is that those opinions apply to all situations or are reflective all other ChefTalk participants.


One thing I will definitely agree with is that I probably should not have used that expression.  I thought about the perils but proceeded nonetheless.

post #11 of 24
Come on, guys. A new visitor is looking for a present, doesn't know so much about knives, doesn't know about the recipient's preferences. Is it that hard to name a well-made knife of $150??
When I suggested a Misono it is not because it's my personal preference, but it's a very safe choice, and offers great F&F, which makes it particularly suitable as a present.
post #12 of 24

No and you are absolutely right Benuser, the Misono is an excellent choice here.  I was just hoping the OP could post a picture of what her father has so we could have a real good idea before suggesting anything else in the same range.


In line with the Misono there is also the Geshin Stainless http://www.japaneseknifeimports.com/kitchen-knives-14/kitchen-knives/gesshin-specials/stainless-yo-series/gesshin-240mm-stainless-gyuto.html  Or the Gonbie better still http://www.japaneseknifeimports.com/kitchen-knives-14/kitchen-knives/gonbei/aus-10-series/gonbei-aus-10-240mm-gyuto.html


The Misono looks to have a slightly flatter profile, which would suite someone who was more accustomed to the Sabatier/French style.  Whereas the other 2 knives are not so far from flat they would appeal more to someone who used German (more rounded profile to the edge) knives.


These are all 240mm/9.5" knives.  It's too bad that Suisin only makes a 270/10.5" chefs knife, it's just over budget and may be more knife than what is wanted.




Edited by Rick Alan - 5/11/15 at 4:37pm
post #13 of 24
OK, I'll follow your lead, Benuser. good in my experience include Shun Premier. Very pretty and very sharp. Would mak a nice present that many would enjoy both giving or receiving. Oyher opinion exist, of course, and some may be contrary to mine
post #14 of 24

Just one note about all these japanese knife recommendations.  If it doesn't say otherwise, it's intended for someone right handed.  Left hand options are sometimes provided at an upcharge.  Shun is an exception since they are actually symmetric.

post #15 of 24

Interesting, Shun Premier is out of the $150 price range of course but the 8" Sora is going for $80 by everyone from cutleryandmore.com to overstock.com, though nothing larger available.  Not much blade width for a chefs, almost like a slicer, handle is awfully thin.  I can tolerate most any handle shape but I think I might draw the line at that one.  I can see why they're discounting it but at that price I can also see buying it as a gift, for someone, maybe.






Edited by Rick Alan - 5/11/15 at 7:07pm
post #16 of 24
post #17 of 24
That is an interesting option, Rick. Wouldn't be my first choice of a chef knife but very pretty and would be a very useful tool. Decent price too. Now if only the OP would reappear!
post #18 of 24
If only I had not just bought myself another old American carbon chef knife...
post #19 of 24

@Benuser  already mentioned the website Japaneschefsknife.com. Have a look at this one on there as well: http://japanesechefsknife.com/KAGAYAKICarboNextSeries.html#CarboNextSeries.

Yes, the name is terrible, but it is a good knife (at least according to my opinion:)) and the gyuto's (chef's knives) are within budget.


Anyway, I would probably make my dad a voucher for a good knife and then go look together online or at the shop as it is a pretty individual choice (type of steel, length, weight etc etc).

Life is too short to drink bad wine


Life is too short to drink bad wine

post #20 of 24

Ahaha, I actually liked the Ken onion designed handle (much like the Fieri) for a steak knife, wouldn't care for it anywhere else though.


Actually my go-to knife of 25 years was an 8" slicer with a skinny handle, I just don't want to goo back to that.




post #21 of 24

As to the Shun Sora, other than Shun's typically thick edge geometry my concerns for Shun's poor history in the QC of critical processes, ultimately affecting heat treat, are exacerbated in the Sora due to the edge being braze-welded on.  They have a good return policy but the knife has to be mailed in with a form and inspected before you get a replacement.  If you buy from a brick'n mortor I think they do this for you.


I personally would still easily take the Fujiwara and Tojiro DP over it.




Edited by Rick Alan - 5/12/15 at 11:53am
post #22 of 24

Wait so there's less than 1/2" of VG10 at the edge just welded on to the rest of it?  That is kind of funny in a sad way.

post #23 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thanks to everyone who has answered so far. My dad should be getting home soon and I will try to ask him what types of knives he prefers.

post #24 of 24
Thread Starter 

All i know from previous conversations we've had is that he prefers 9-10 in knives. He thinks that 8 in is too small. We have moved almost every year since I was little and a good majority of my father's high end knives have gone missing. He does have a set he pulls out every now and then for special occasions. I will sneak a peek to see what brand it is 

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