I am moving into an apartment with a decent kitchen and someone who I will cook for semi-regularly so I am trying to fill out my kitchen set. I have a solid grasp of cutting techniques but I am a complete novice at sharpening — though I am eager to improve in that area. I am willing to spend about $100 on a chef's knife and I am willing to buy the appropriate tools to maintain it. I have already looked at the Global G-2, the Wusthof Classic Ikon and the Misono Molybdenum, and I am very open to others. Also, I have medium-length thin fingers. Any suggestions?
Looking for first personal chef's knife
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To start, we can look at whether you want a Japanese knife or a western knife.
Here is a general overview:
- harder steel
- better edge retention (holds a sharper edge longer)
- usually thinner blades
- potential for the edge to chip (because the steel is very hard)
- softer steel
- knife edge rolls/bends instead of chipping (because the steel is softer)
- usually thicker blades (i.e., more potential for wedging)
If you want a high-performing knife, you might want to look at Japanese knives. Though keep in mind high-performing knives do require more maintenance and care.
Keep in mind that this is a very basic summary of Japanese vs. western knives.
Talk to Jon at Japanese Knife Imports. He's extremely knowledgeable.
Update: I actually thought this wasn't going to post successfully at first, so I just went ahead and got the Misono Molybdenum. I am still deciding on my sharpening supplies, I am thinking a ceramic steel and a 1000 grain King waterstone. But I also wonder if the waterstone brace is always necessary, and what type of flattener is needed at a beginner level.
You can get as much or little sharpening stuff as you want. There are convenient ways, knife enthusiast ways, get it done good enough ways, budget ways. No right or wrong path.
The misono can take a finishing stone, you will want to refine more than 1000 grit to get the most of it.
king 1000/6000 combo stone is pretty cheap. It's small but it will get the job done. Dishes fast so you need a stone flattener. I use the JKI diamond flattener i think its around $60. Cheaper you can use drywall screen on something you know is flat like glass.
Stone holder is good for friction but also it gives you some height otherwise you drag your knuckles on the table. on the cheap side, put a 2x4 across your sink and put the stone on a kitchen rag