I have been reading as much as possible on this forum over the last few days to try to figure out "the right questions" before looking for any answers. I am an avid home cook with a careful nature and pride in taking care of nice things.
I was thinking of buying a first upgrade to the ~60 pound (GBP) knife set I was given a few years ago. They serve me well day to day and I intend to keep the equivalent knives for rougher work such as large root vegetables and the occasional chicken carcass.
I am looking for a gyuto of between 8 and 10 inches for a rough maximum of £170. I am prepared to buy a pair of whetstones (say 8k and 2k although I do not know what a good pair/set comprises in terms of grit) and I have steady hands and am keen to learn how to maintain a good knife.
I mostly chop vegetables and occasionally chicken breast and fish (I got into cutting my own sashimi every now and then). I use a pinch grip most of the time so wa handles are fine and I prefer a light blade with a fairly central balance point. I also have no particular attachment to German style blade bellies. Non stainless steel is ok and if anything preferred as I am prepared to wash gently, dry thoroughly and potentially oil the blades after use although the oil thing maybe a minor inconvenience.
My cutting area is quite large and I own a small 10-12 by 7 inch softwood board and a larger 60x40cm soft plastic board which I might replace for cherry or something similar.
The cherry on top would be the Damascus style finish as I do find it rather lovely. I will not likely notice the "numbness" described by some advanced users of cladding. This is by no means essential as I would rather get a better quality and better value knife for the money rather than going the shun route of overpaying for the sake of a pattern and marketing. Handle material is also somewhat irrelevant as I am not a snob about whether or not it is some fancy wood.
As an aside, when I registered on here earlier, the bit where you describe your user capacity had "home cook", "cook at home" and "at home cool". Call me a fool but aren't they the same?
Thanks for reading and hi again to everyone! This session like a great place to learn.