or Connect
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Knife Reviews › Advice Needed: Yoshihiro VG10
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Advice Needed: Yoshihiro VG10

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi Everyone, I am looking to buy my first Japanese Chef Knife, and wanted some advice. I am not a professional cook, but do cook quite a lot at home, and have decent skills. I've been reading about the various possible chef knives out there, and decided to go with a Japanese brand (but not necessarily Japanese style, or at least not rigorously so). 

 

I stumbled upon several good reviews of The Yoshihiro VG10. I like the knife's profile, in that it is not a broad as European chef knives. And I do want to go with stainless steel and not Carbon steel. I do have some questions:

 

- How does it stand in terms of quality of steel and sharpness in comparison to other Japanese Brands?

- I read some negative posts on Damascus steel and Damascus finish, could someone explain the positive and negative aspects of this?

- Should I go for the 10inch or 8inch model? Consider I am not planning on buying, at the moment, more than one knife, and this will serve as my one all-purpose knife.

 

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 16
That's a nice looking knife that seems to have a lot of promise. I have no personal experience with it or Yoshihiro in general. VG10 isn't easy to sharpen but certainly not impossible. Not even really difficult if one is dedicated and willing to learn how. You should give it a try and give us a detailed real-user assessment; I don't think you can lose on this one!

But stay tuned, there are a number of knife gurus and opinions on this forum to learn from. They'll be chiming in soon I'm sure.
Edited by BrianShaw - 4/7/16 at 7:35am
post #3 of 16
Two comments on your questions. I use similar knife of a different brand and have for many years.

The Damascus surface does not get messed up much. I've seen some in commercial use that did but they were scrubbed with steel wool, etc. with good and normal care that is not a common experience.

8 or 10 inch depends on you comfort level and cutting board and counter space. In home use 8 is quite effective. With lighter Japanese style blade a 10 handles real nice but if your space isn't big enough it can actually be a detriment. For cutting big things, like a cabbage or watermelon, 10 is very handy. It depends...
post #4 of 16
The faux-damascus will hinder good thinning, and most I've seen weren't very thin behind the edge. At this price point I would consider the Misono 440. With Korin you get a free initial stone sharpening.
post #5 of 16
As this price level you're just getting Damascus finish, completely aesthetic. The patterned cladding doesn't inherently lead to a thick knife, but that might be a trend of that type of construction. I have 2 (Tanaka VG10 and an HD) that I would not consider thick knives.

VG10 is fine and if you're committed to stainless is probably be one of the steels you see the most. There's a learning curve to possibly being able to get more out of the sharpening of VG10 than some other stainless alloys, but at the end of the day stainless tends to feel a certain way. And a decent edge on VG10 is pretty nice if you're coming into J-knives.

What will suck is when they need thinning, actual thinning that requires coarse stones, that's going to marr up the nice pattern like 1/3 the way up the blade. You can polish it out but it is some amount of additional effort. Even with my incidental scratches from my first few sharpenings it makes me cringe. So that's something to gauge about your own preferences.

Space and relative level of adaptability help dictate the length of knife you buy. The watermelons are back in the markets so I'll be very happy for my 240-270mm knives.

Keep reading and looking around, and please chime back in!
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by foody518 View Post

...

What will suck is when they need thinning, actual thinning that requires coarse stones, that's going to marr up the nice pattern like 1/3 the way up the blade. You can polish it out but it is some amount of additional effort. Even with my incidental scratches from my first few sharpenings it makes me cringe. So that's something to gauge about your own preferences.

...

This is very correct, but the same for any knife. Not a unique problem with cladded "faux Damascus". About the only difference that I know if is that when the Damascus gets marred it needs more than just a polishing to restore the factory appearance.

post #7 of 16
It seems more a shame due to the knife having more of that type of aesthetic, and that generally being part of the appeal. I'm looking at more wide beveled, less flashy knives now as a reaction to that- a look that I can better maintain.

An acid etch is desirable to bring back out the contrast in the layers after scratches or polishing 'erase' the existing pattern.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the advice. After doing some more research, I am now seriously concerned that buying said knife (Yoshihiro VG10) as a first Japanese chef knife will result in me ruining it. I am now considering buying something cheaper and less delicate as my entry knife, and after gaining some experience with the knife and especially with sharpening, I'll upgrade to the Yoshihiro. Could you guys recommend something of a different style but of a lower "level" in both price and expertise needed?

post #9 of 16
The worst you can do is make it chipped, dull, and ugly. All of that can be fixed. In fact it's part of your learning process.
post #10 of 16
I agree with Millions, but dont think chipping is a big risk. It may happen but isn't common among careful knife users. Scratching is a fact of life and is a bit of an appearance detractor but has no affect on perfornance.
post #11 of 16

Tojiro DP, Fujiwara FKM, Gesshin Stainless, Kanetsugu Pro-M, Misono Moly

post #12 of 16

The Tojiro DP really is the best value. I know a few guys who have had them for years and have given them very little attention, but they come back with a little honing pretty quickly. There are many places you can always take the knife to for sharpening if you feel unsure of doing it yourself. We have a kitchen store in the area that charges 5 bucks. I recently purchased the Tojiro DP Gyutou 9.4" for 60 on amazon. It's a real bargain, and every bit as good as a Shun.

post #13 of 16
Many places you can take the knife to for sharpening?? No...
Most sharpening devices will destroy the temper and weaken the steel accordingly. VG-10 deserves a stone sharpening, and only very few sharpeners offer that.
post #14 of 16


I guess it depends on your area. There's one down the street from me in Northampton that will do everything but serrated knives.

post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke Daigle View Post
 


I guess it depends on your area. There's one down the street from me in Northampton that will do everything but serrated knives.

That is my experience also. Broad brush comments simply aren't always accurate. In my area there are some commercial sharpening folks that I use (even with VG10 and get excellent results) and some I wouldn't consider using. Not all use stones and hand sharpening, BTW. It is important to discern the difference between a good and bad sharpening firm BEFORE having a knife ruined.

 


But I certainly agree that VG-10 (and almost all good steel) responds best to hand sharpening on stones by people who know what they are doing... especially if the user is exceedingly discerning or critical. For most normal users, though, even a "decent but not perfect" sharpening gives adequate performance with no damage to the steel. I know I've had really good sharpenings from sharpening services and not so good... but never anything I could say was damaging.

post #16 of 16
Definitely location dependent. The only thing I've heard in my area is some guy sharpening stuff out of his truck at the farmer's market. I'd have to dig around on the Internet for what else there is, but if I wasn't a geek I wouldn't necessarily know to do that. But after my first 10 or so hours of sharpening practice and the progress made then there's almost no way I'd go send it off at this point to a jack of all trades guy not using stones (keeping in mind I have my lovely J-knives).
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cooking Knife Reviews
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Knife Reviews › Advice Needed: Yoshihiro VG10