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I have a G-2 ($124) and a Victorinox 8" fibrox ($30) (and others) and I use the Victorinox more regularly than the Global.
The handle is comfortable and grippy. It costs 1/4 of the global. It sharpens well, cuts well. You could put the rest of the saved $100 towards a 6" version, a paring knife and a bread knife (if that's something you'd use)
Buy this chef's knife!
If you buy the other two knives in the "Frequently bought together" recommendation (the bread knife and paring knife), you'll have a pretty solid knife set. And you'll be right around your $50 budget.
You don't need fancy knives, but you do need sharp knives. And the block you received almost certainly came with a chef's knife. It's the most common all-around knife there is.
If you don't have one, you should get one. They don't have to break the bank.
I have a bunch of knives of different prices and metals. And lately I've been using this Victorinox 8 inch chefs knife almost exclusively. It's so easy to sharpen...honestly a few minutes a month and it just stays sharp. It's lightweight and just crazy fun to use, and it's my cheapest knife by far.
As u/cweees stated for $50 you are very limited with options, I would say try and save up some more or go with this. A decent Gyuto will cost at least ~$100
I am not sure if sellers in the US (or at least outside the German speaking markets) mislabel the knives but the 6", 7.5" and 10" are comparatively low-slung knives ("Tranchiermesser" as they call them, carving or slicing knives).
Only the 8" is the chef knife, the one with a bazillion positive reviews; it has the article number 5.2063.20, 40520, 47520, 45520 or 47520.US2, depending on the packaging.
The difference? This 8" is "extra breit", meaning it has a higher blade and thus the proper blade shape for a chef knife. It's visible in pictures quite well.
You can't really go wrong with a Victorinox Fibrox they sell on Amazon for $43 CAD so even less USD. Out of the box they're wonderfully sharp, maintain an edge well as long as you treat it right.
As the only other comment here stated, you should also try getting a great edge on your current knife. Quality of knife (I find) rarely matters for the edge to an amateur cook.
If you do buy a new knife, make sure you treat it right. Sharpen it, don't let it sit with acidic or basic food juices stuck to it. Don't smash the edge. Use a honing steel and for the love of God, don't throw it in a drawer.
If you can't sharpen it on your own with a whetstone or sharpening wheel, please don't buy those pull through sharpeners. Spend the money every few months to send it to a sharpener if you really are afraid to mess it up.
If you want closer to the $100 price range, you can always look at Lamson knives based in the USA. I bought their 3.5" Sentoku and have been in love. It set me back about $130CAD/$100USD.
Or you can look at Zwilling/Henckels knives.
But do yourself a favour, if you get a good chef's knife, get yourself a good Petty/Utility or at the very least a proper Paring knife. 2 knives means 50% less wear on each blade for certain tasks. Also, that way, you're never without a knife if your favourite is away for sharpening.
I got this 8" victorinox a couple years ago for >$30. It was on a recommendation from Serious Eats, but it seems they have since updated that list. I'm pretty passionate about sharp knives and love the sharpen them when needed. I haven't touched this one yet, and it's my main work horse in the kitchen.
A chef knife is just an all purpose knife. [link]
Can get decent enough ones for pretty cheap. Most people are 10x better off spending $30-$50 on a single knife versus a shitty knife block full of knives.
For knives just get the Victorinox ones with the fibrox handles from Amazon.
Consistently rated best buys by America's Test Kitchen. Often recommended to new culinary students because of their value.
Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef's Knife, 8-Inch Chef's [link]
Edit: I have many "expensive" kitchen knives, Global, Shun, henckels, and a couple of handmade ones from a local bladesmith. My wife and I are the only ones allowed to use all those. The knife block on the counter is full of Victorinox ones.
Victorinox Fibrox is probably all you need. Great knifes, relatively in-expensive. I'm pretty rough on knives but mine continue to get the job done after like 4 years, probably the longest i've ever had a knife.
You are probably right. I really like the idea of the single bevel conceptually. I get very frustrated when chopping round things like cucumbers and they stack up on the blade and then go shooting all over the kitchen and the single bevel seemed like it would be great at popping off slices.
I plan on using this knife mostly for veggies. This is my current main knife
It doesn't look like it has a convex grind. Is that something that would help? I have also read that hammer finishing like a lot of nakiri have helps.
For what it is worth, I prefer to push cut, but I have also never used a chopper like a nakiri.
Thanks for your advice.
The Vicronox Chefs knife (recommended by Americas Test Kitchen) is on sale for $30 down from $42 right now.
Use the money you save for a sharper.
The other idea - look at "Saber" knives. He designed them for cooking students and the price is something like $7/inch - any style.
If you have a Sur La Table store near you, they usually let you handle the knives. Bring some carrots and potatoes to see how they feel in your hand. They have the Victronox as well.
I recently picked up the Victorinox 8" Chefs knife - gets a lot of "best knife for the $$" type praise.
Compared to my other chef knives, the blade is a little thinner making it feel a bit more agile. I like the fibrox handle. It came ultra sharp and, after a month of daily use, it still is. Which is good because I'm not that great of a sharpener.
I'm not a fan of knife blocks, as 99% of my or anyone elses cooking is just with 3 knives
8 inch chefs knife. I love my Shun, but $160 is a bit much when your roommates will treat it like shit. For a university student a great gift is a Victorianox Fibrox. Great value. If it's destroyed after your 4 years and you've got some disposable income again than invest in one you'll treat right and use for the rest of your life.
Cheap paring knife or 2. I saw them for sale for $1.50 at Real Canadian Superstore the other day.
Cheap but effective bread knife. I got mine when a restaurant was selling off their stuff.
Really, that's all you need. Not 7 knives you'll only use when your chef's knife is dirty.
Since you mentioned Amazon, the Victorinox Fibrox is generally regarded as exceptional value for the price, google it.
Out of the box it's literally razor sharp, was able to effortlessly shave my arm hair. The stock bevel is actually a little steep for my use of a german-style knife: cutting against a wooden board without worry, and sharpening only once or twice a year. I re-sharpened it with the 20deg groove on my lansky after about two months and it keeps a pretty durable edge like that.
Real (single-beveled, carbon steel, <20deg bevel) japanese knives are truly precision instruments, but they require insane (to me) amounts of care. Japanese sushi chefs just barely touch the cutting board when cutting through ingredients to keep the blade razor sharp, and generally sharpen every day, polishing on up to 3000 grit water stones. I'm just not at that level yet :)
If you don't have strongly defined needs/preferences, I would get something like this:
Solid knife, good one to use while learning about knife care. Maybe you will be happy with it for a long time. Or maybe you will learn what you want in a fancier knife later. Keep it simple until there is a good reason to pay more.
This is the best Chef's knife, and I'll start a fight with anyone who says otherwise. America's Test Kitchen agrees with me, so they might start a fight too.
Honestly, though a paring knife is super handy, I've never found that investing in a nice one is really worth it. Get something other than the very cheapest and you'll be OK.
Also, good on you for buying a few nice things instead of a lot of bad ones. When I was on my own for the first time, I bought the cheapest full knife set from Walmart. That thing was so bad I have trouble expressing it in words.
Edit: Since you mentioned that you are looking to buy a lot of kitchen-related things, you actually might want to check America's Test Kitchen or Cooks Illustrated (they are the same company, basically) out. They have a lot of quality gear reviews, and are quite famous for usually not just recommending the most expensive thing - and, when they do, they always recommend a value-oriented option. It will save you a ton of money when you are shopping for that sort of thing.
Learn to cook. Tim Ferris wrote 4 Hour chef which is a good starter book. A quick Google search with the food you want to make + "easy recipe" will show thousands of recipes.
This is the best knife value: [link]
Buy a Lodge 12 inch iron skillet and learn how to cook chicken breast, hamburger, and steaks in the skillet.
After the meat is done, sauté some vegetables in the same pan without cleaning so you flavor your food with the Fond and fat.
If You start simple you only need salt pepper and garlic powder.
Those review scores are for the entire knife line, not just the chef's knife. If you want a high quality affordable chef's knife (and one that isn't fuschia), I highly recommend this Victorinox chef's knife.
Ooh - here is an important thing: Invest in one good chef's knife. You absolutely do not need an entire knife block. this is the one I have. You just need that and perhaps a bread knife. I pretty much never use a paring knife.
A dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one, because a dull knife can slip off of things like tomatoes and slice your hand. Cutting yourself with a very sharp knife barely hurts and happens less often.
Keep it up with the salt - all meat needs a decent amount to taste like anything.
Gonna side with a lot of other commenters here about buying individual knives. Generally speaking, most consumer knife sets are full of dumb specialized knives that you'll never need to use in a professional kitchen. You're better off with three good quality knives instead of the 7 or 8 cheap metal knives you'd get in a set.
I recommend a 8" or 10" Victorinox Chef's knife with the fibrox handle as your primary knife. Truth be told you'll be using this knife for 80% or more of your tasks. This knife is something of a gold standard in kitchens as it is cheap and durable as fuck.
Next, a paring knife. Honestly, this doesn't need to be top of the line. Victorinox probably has a decent one.
Finally you might benefit from a general utility knife for any tasks that you can't use the previous knives for, but as I said, your chef's knife can do just about any task in the kitchen if you learn how to use it.
I didn't check the math here but if you bought these knives, a blade guard for your chef's knife, and a cheap knife roll to keep this all in, you should be under 150 bucks.
Tell your friend to can it lol. Ceramic knives may be sharp as hell but they wouldn't last a day's work in a professional kitchen.
I would go with a Victorinox like this one.
It was my first knife and it's served me well. I've learned how to sharpen knives with it, dropped it, chopped up tons of herbs and veggies with it. It's seen some shit and it's still doing really well for me. I think it's an excellent first knife. :3
Just don't let people touch your knife. Especially at work if it's a place where the knives are shit.
Many people recommend the Victorinox 40520 Fibrox 8-Inch Chef's Knife. A cheaper alternative is the Kiwi brand chef knife that can be found in many Asian stores. As an aside, you may want to do some research into knife care.
I definitely agree with you on these points. Let me offer some possible solutions for them.
I agree with most of your post, but you can get an amazing victorinox 8 inch chef knife for 35 bucks. Amazon
Also, if you are lucky enough to live in a city with a restaurant supply store you can get restaurant quality cookware for super cheap compared to the over priced stuff you see in most places.
i highly recommend this knife if you dont want to spend a lot on a knife. its reviews are amazing and having used it, i think its amazing for the price.
but yes like sproutandthebean said. a decent chefs knife will make a world of a difference.
Do not waste your money on a block set. You'll be paying mostly for knives you'll never use.
Get this one: [link]
It is known for being ridiculously awesome bang for the buck and is what you'll find in many commercial kitchens. You might also want a bread knife. Get a ceramic honer too.
Eventually you'll probably want a paring knife, but honestly I rarely need it.
Boil the kitchen down to five items, and according to Michael Ruhlman you get (in order of importance):
So basically, don't skimp on these items. That doesn't mean that you need a Global 8 inch, but at least spend $20 on it. The highest rated budget knife was is still the Forschner victorinox.
Not a good knife. Go with a Victorinox 8" chef's knife—comes recommended by Cook's Illustrated, is used by more professional cooks than any of the more expensive stuff, and is generally awesome. You'll get nods of approval.
Interesting idea, but flawed execution. A self-inking stamp with an average of 4.79 after a mere 39 reviews rates on your scale?
More pressingly: the prices are wrong. For example, you list the Victorinox 40520 as being $22.50, but if you click the link, it's $29.12.
Needs some work.
This. A good chef's knife will do 90% of the tasks you need a knife for. A smaller paring knife will pretty much round out the rest of your cutting needs, unless you cut a lot of bread.
Honestly, I only had one chef's knife for a year and it did pretty much everything I needed to. Victorinox makes a decent knife for a reasonable price (it's available on Amazon), though my $6 knife from the Asian grocery has served me well.
I like my Global knife better then the Shun I have, don't get a set, get a 8-10" chef, a paring knife, maybe a bread/serrated knife, you'll be good to go. I also have a J.A. Henckel that is still wonderfully sharp a few years later.
If you're looking for something more budget oriented link
Get yourself a good knife, not that crap you see on infomercials. Victorinox's Fibrox is generally considered to be a good balance of quality and price. You'll also want a honing steel. Use it often (ideally, every time you use the knife). There are videos all over YouTube on how to use one. You'll also want to get the knife sharpened professionally every so often. It's inexpensive (I pay $3/knife), so don't worry about the cost.
For kitchen gear, either go to a thrift store or a restaurant supply store. You often can find more inexpensive pots, etc. than at Wal-Mart or a supermarket.
Get this knife. It's not my best knife, but dollar for dollar it is. When you have more money you can invest in a nicer one.
Find a knife shop next to you, they can sharpen it for you every once in awhile. My guy charges 1.75 an inch, unless you want to do it yourself.
If you want to make stuff that's cheap and easy and will feed you for awhile, learn to make: chili, japanese style curry, and big rice dishes. I like to make more complex meals, but if I want something simple and easy I'll make one of those 3. Spanish rice is obvious. I like Spanakorizo too, it's even cheaper because you don't have to make the initial investment in spices (You have to have lemon and feta with it, it's mandatory). That rice they have at Chipotle, you can make that very easily, put butter in a pan, then add the rice with some fresh lime juice and cook it a little until the juice is almost gone. Then cook it like normal (you put the right amount of water, bring it to a boil, then simmer covered) with some sugar, butter, and salt. Dump some chopped cilantro in there when it's done. It's delicious.
Japanese curry is awesome, it's maybe 3 bucks for a box of the curry, a couple bucks of vegetables and a cheap meat. It'll feed you 3 big ass dinners.
Had my entire reply written out, and then lost it. Damnit. Anyways, buying a few knives and knowing how to properly use them will always give you better results than having 10 different specialty knives. I think that the Victorinox knives are some of the best valued knives you can buy. I would recommend an 8-10 inch chefs knife for 80% of kitchen work, a good pairing knife, and a curved serrated knife.
Nice doesn’t necessarily mean expensive either. Excellent knife.
Not him, but I recommend Victorinox. They make swiss-army knives and also really decent mid-range kitchen knives that will last you years and won't cost a fortune.
ya seriously, don't bring over a grand worth of knives to school.
maybe bring just one, the chef knife, but definitely not the whole set. and i would wait like at least the second month into the semester, after everyone learns about the #1 rule of kitchens, which is "don't touch my knife without asking for permission."
i'd also be wary if you are the only person with a really nice knife, as it is good bait to be stolen, or people could fuck with your knife and break it out of malice or just incompetence. unless one is knowledgeable of knives, one will assume all are equal, and can do anything and everything with it, like trying to cut a butternut squash, or coring an avocado...it would be shitty for a classmate to break your knife by doing something dumb with it, and how would you hold them accountable for breaking a CAD$ 350 ish knife? school ain't gonna do shit about it, just like in the industry.
since all your knives are SG2 steel, with a hrc of 63, you will also need a beater work horse knife to cut really hard stuff like butternut squash. i suggest you get something like victorinox fibrox, a CAD$60 stamped knife, which will get the job done.
another benefit of using something that's not laser sharp is that it forces you to have good technique when cutting, great for when you are really practicing your cuts. this knife can get decently sharp if you use whetstones, but just has shit edge retention.
think of the analogy of getting a honda civic as your first car to learn to drive, as opposed to getting a ferrari.
in continuation of the car analogy, when you start your first job, you better fucking have good knife skills, or you will be clowned day and night. as the "FNG" (fucking new guy/gal), you will earn a lot of respect if you rock a fancy knife and can back it up with the knife skills, but will lose a lot of respect if you can't cut for shit.
don't we all just laugh at all the youtube videos of jackasses trying to stunt with their supercars, only to crash into a light pole 30 seconds later? ya, kinda like that.
Sure! Just a quick primer on terminology, a steak knife looks like this: [link]
It is a short table knife, typically 3-6 inches long, with a serrated edge, meant to be used with a fork for cutting off bite sized pieces of cooked meat. They typically aren't a prep knife.
The core knife used for most prep work is typically a Chef's Knife: [link]
Typically between 6-14 inches long, with a tall (from cutting edge to spine) non-serrated (straight, no little teeth) blade.
Typically I advise a person needs only a handful of knives, with more needed depending on how often you cook specific dishes (If you are breaking down a lot of large cuts of meat, or whole birds, you will need a cleaver or butcher's knife, if you are making a lot of roasts/briskets/BBQ you need a meat slicer, etc.)
You typically need a Chef's Knife. A Petty/Utility/Pairing Knife (Typically similar in shape and usage to a Chef's knife but with a blade typically half the length of a Chef's Knife ranging from 3-6 inches, this is used for peeling vegetables, dicing and cutting herbs and veggies, and more detailed or delicate work that you might need to get a little closer to, like garnishes.)
A Serrated Bread knife for baked goods, and breads to get slices of it.
And a good pair of kitchen shears, and a cleaver or slicer I also often recommend, it really depends on what you cook the most, and what gaps you need to fill in your kitchen to make your life easier.
For cutting boards, if you want a "Buy it for life" option, I recommend the ProTeak: [link]
It's America's Test Kitchen's recommendation, and a great board.
If you want to spend about half to a third as much and still get a REALLY solid board, the OXO Good Grips is a easy to find, and commonly recommended plastic cutting board from a well known brand: [link]
For Chef's Knife a good starter knife...
These are both some of the first knives professional Chef's use, they next to the slightly more expensive Wusthof are typically the knife that people will use throughout most culinary school, and are often the "Workhorse" or "Beater" knife in a kitchen.
The Next step-down, and what is especially a great practice knife are the Kiwi's, they are extremely cheap Thai-style knives, that are surprisingly tough and sharp: [link]
Conversely the next step-up would probably be a MAC, a Global, or a Wusthof.
They are a little pricier, but if you are REALLY into cooking, these will all last for decades with proper maintenance.
For a Petty/Pairing/Utility Knife:
For a Bread Knife:
You can get the very basic model here, cutting bread is not delicate work, and it isn't something that is going to put exceptional wear and tear on a knife, unless you work in a professional bakery, and are spending all day cutting bread because the owners have some kind of ill-founded belief in the honor of cutting bread by hand instead of using a slicer machine, there is no reason you should be spending a lot of money on a Bread Knife.
In my professional kitchen, I have two Bread Knifes, a $10 Komachi in my personal kit and a $15-20 Wolfgang Puck brand up on the magnetic strip, it gets used maybe 3 times a week.
For Kitchen Shears, I recommend the Kai Kitchen Shears that Serious Eats also recommends: [link]
You can separate the blades and put them in a dishwasher, making them more reliably able to be sterilized, pairs that don't come apart are tedious to clean, as you have to scrub in the little area in between the blade rivet, and if you are using them to help you break down chicken, it's essential to have them come apart.
Cleavers like Bread knives can tend to be a bit cheaper, since the blades are thick and heavy and don't need to be a delicate as a Chef's knife, Dexter and Mercer both make decent Cleavers in the $25-35 range.
For a roast slicer, I recommend the Dexter Sani-slicer, this is the same one that Aaron Franklin uses in his kitchen at Franklin's BBQ in Austin, one of the most well-regarded BBQ/Brisket joints in the world:
That's my recommendations for knifes, you should be able to get a beginner's set together with the $25 board, $40 chef's knife, $22 Petty, $17 Bread Knife, and $20 Shears, total $125ish dollars, and upgrade to the better next step up as needed, or if you feel passionate about it.
You can also probably knock the petty knife out to start with, if you don't feel like you do enough work that warrants it.
Go to this site: Budget Bytes. Spend 30-60 minutes going back through a few dozen pages, finding recipes you think you might like, and pasting the title & link into a Google Doc (or worksheet). Pick a couple out each week and give them a shot. If you don't know how to do a step, watch a YouTube video, such as dicing an onion/garlic, sauteing vegetables, etc.
That site has great low-BS, easy, cheap recipes that are as quick as you're going to get for a good, fresh home-cooked meal.
You can use whatever cookware and kitchen tools you have around, but it's imperative you get a good knife and a decent cutting board.
Once you've gotten the hang out of a couple dozen Budget Bytes recipes, post again or search this sub for new recipe blogs to branch out to.
The Victorinox knives are generally considered to be the best "bang for the buck" knives in that price range. The 8 inch is a little more than $30.
Pretty much anything else in that range will be cheap stamped Chinese garbage. Even if it is called "German steel," if it's cheap, it's Chinese garbage.
If you absolutely must stay under $30, then get the cheapest one you can find and start saving for an upgrade.
EDIT: Here's the santoku. A little more money, but it will be worth it:
Just get a Vic Fibrox and be done with it
Victorinox chef's knives are a very good value, and are below your limit in the US, so you should be able to get one in Europe for a reasonable price. The Fibrox handled version is cheaper:
The Rosewood handled knife is still under $50 at Amazon:
A 40" would be a bit small for the viewing experience in this very large living room. I could decrease my budget, but I found that 1500 gets very good value (It's actually the final price of a TV I want). I use the TV everyday, so I guess this is the one thing I don't mind being a bit reckless.
Most home items I've included on Amazon. Anything not on there I'm grabbing at IKEA. I'm essentially starting afresh, except for my clothes and some items I've collected over the years.
I know you didn't ask, but:
1184.63 total. Tax included and it actually exceeds 1300 now (I've added a few things)
You're thinking of a Meat Cleaver that you use to cut through bones. A chef's knife is used for delicate cutting, chopping and stabbing.
Chef's Knife - [link]
Meat Cleaver - [link]
Gordon has a wicked sharp knife to start; that is essential for getting nice cuts through fish. Otherwise you'll be tearing at it... the knife doesn't even have to be very expensive -- just sharp and steeled.
The Victorinox are a great value; I got one for my wife as they are so light [link]
And you need a steel [link]
Once you have those two things, cutting through fresh fish will be like butter.
OK now to clarify -- the fish on the outside will have two layers --
SCALES and SKIN
Scales are the tiny iridescent flakes that keep a fish waterproof. Nearly every store that sells you a fish will sell it with the scales already off. You might have to clean a few scales off when you get home but usually not.
What you're seeing chef cut through in that video is the skin of the fish. Some fish skins are edible and some are not. Salmon skin is very tasty so you can leave it on or you can take it off -- [link]
So hope that helps clarify descaling vs. deskinning. Though I just realized you may be a Brit and maybe our terms are different! But either way get a sharp tool and you should be good to go.
Get a Victorinox chefs knife. They’re cheap and amazing. [link]
Not OP, but from the picture it looks like this one: Victorinox Fibrox. They're not high-end, but are good, cheap knives, with a rubberized grip that makes them not slippery.
It doesn't have quite that special gift feel to it, but this is America's Test Kitchen's best chef knife for like 30 years in a row. [link]
My friend's a knife enthusiast, and similar to you got into cooking two years ago and still working with cheap knives. He recommended me this, may need to learn some sharpening skills or get the auto ones I guess.
I am not sure what your location is but of course adjust to yours. I haven't bought it yet because I want to learn how to sharpen with a whetstone first.
Start simple with just an 8" chef knife and a stone for maintenance.
Recommend like a MAC Chef Knife or a Victorinox Fibrox (with a honing rod). good for value, robust, forgiving knives which is great for your first time.
For maintenance, Suehiro Cerax 1k or King 1k/6k stone - he'll need to learn how to use the stone, maybe check out Burrfection or other people.
Honing rod is recommended for western knives to maintain sharpness.
Stones is needed to sharpen the knives when they blunt with use.
When you develop more experience or love for knives, then start buying your other stuff like serrated, paring, utility, nakiris, santokus, higher grit stones and whatnot.
check out /r/chefknives
This is what we're talking about.
It's not a terribly sexy knife (no exposed tang all the way down the handle) but it's an awesome knife for the price. I buy the paring version compulsively like AA batteries almost anytime I need to bump an Amazon order up to a free delivery.
It took me 30 minutes to find thisagain, so I hope you enjoy it. Best video of this type I've ever seen, and gives the best way to chop an onion. (Don't do that cut horizontally crap! Good way to cut yourself!)
Also, here is the link I saved for the best all around knife.
And here's the video that convinced me that's the best knife.
Victorinox Chef Knife has amazing bang for buck.
Save up a little and buy this knife. [link]
My chef's knife:
Thank you for the reply. Appreciate the information.
Definitely not a professional. I just want to give him something that is solid and will last a long time. I was thinking of:
Victorinox Fibrox and a BearMoo Stone.
That being said, if a Wustof is better in the long run, I'm not adverse to getting one of those with a sharpening stone.
So something like:
Victorinox Fibrox and a BearMoo Stone?
Personally, I'm not a fan of the kits. There's always a knife or two you never use and eventually you wind up with a half empty block due to broken or misplaced knives. I'd also prefer the extra counter space.
Get him a decent chef's knife and a set of steak knives.
Hey - I wholeheartedly recommend the Victorionox Fibrox 8" Chef's Knife to beginners and experts alike!
They are on sale today!
I was looking at these:
This is pretty much the most recommended cheap chef's knife. I have it and it is pretty good, not as good as my main knife but still good enough for any task. I actually use it on harder foods as I've known of the tojiro chipping the blade on frozen or harder vegetables and roots.
Victorinox also has a 9 dollar paring knife
This isn't a very fancy knife, but I have one of these, and I love it. Stays pretty sharp. I hear some restaurants use them.
Victorinox Chef's Knife is the best bang-for-buck chef's knife you can buy.
Here you go!
According to America's Test Kitchen, this is the best chef's knife around... and it is cheap!
This knife is the most commonly recommended here:
Link for the lazy
The best value in knives is the Victorianox Fibrox Chefs Knife. Very sharp, holds it's edge, great handle, and cheap enough that you don't get angry if you somehow manage to ruin it (i.e. drop it on it's tip or edge). This is probably the most commonly used knife in restaurant kitchens.
If you want something 'professional' I would look at the MAC brand. This is what I have and it's very good. A step up would be this MAC.
Bascially, the harder the metal gets the sharper the edge. But when you start getting really, really hard/sharp you also get more brittle and prone to chipping. The two MAC knives find a nice balance of being really sharp, but not being really brittle or hard to maintain like a lot of the pro-level Japanese blades.
Germans also make some good blades. But they are more "cleaver-like" than finer and more elegant Japanese blades.
You won't be able to get a good set for anywhere near $50. I would recommend this: http://www.amazon.com/Victorinox-Fibrox-8-Inch-47520-5-2063-20/dp/B000638D32/ref=sr_1_1?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1435618556&sr=1-1&keywords=chef+knife
It's the best knife to get if you only have one knife to use. Then I would add knives one by one as you figure out you need them. You will probably find that you only need the chef's knife and a paring knife.
The Victorinox Fibrox knives are excellent, and highly recommended most places. I have the 8" chef, 10" bread and a paring knife which all get plenty of use. I wouldn't trade them for any other knives I've used.
8-Inch Chef's Knife [link]
You may find it cheaper elsewhere. If you can stretch your budget, a sharp stick would be a great addition.
An edge guard is almost a must if he's going to keep it in a drawer. [link]
The Victorinox chef's knives, like this one, are excellent, and well worth the price. They're the standard recommendation in threads like this for a reason.
As many people have said do not put knives in the dishwasher. It ruins them.
A victorinox basic chef knife [link] wash any knife you care for in the sink.. Takes maybe a minute.
A honing rod. [link]
To be used sparingly.
And here is how you use it.. [link]
No dishwasher! And most knives will be bifl :D
As many people stated here previously, a knife set is a bad idea, for many reasons; you wont get your money's worth and likely one may not need to use most of the knives, especially for a work scenario.
If however you truly want a knife set, combine your own! Seeing as this is just a parting gift, and I assume you don't know your friends cutlery needs, I recommend a Chef's Knife and a Utility Knife. Of course there are more but with only $150 it's best to get the best knife possible for your budget.
>For more of a beefy type of knife I would reccomend the highly acclaimed Victorinox Fibrox 8-Inch Chef Knife.
>I personally really enjoy the Japanese Tojiro brand, they're fairly inexpensive and a good price for their quality. Here is a fairly cheep Utility or Petty blade. The Tojiro Petty Knife.
All in all, I would personally just either give the money to this fellow friend and allow them to allocate the money directly, (he's going to France, perhaps he'll buy a French Sabatier) rather than playing a guessing game seeing as everyone's preference changes.
Get a good chef's knife and you are even better off.
It doesn't have the length but for the home sushi chef it will be perfectly fine.
The one thing you have to have is a good chef's knife. I recommend the Victorinox Chef's knife. It's hard to find a better knife for that good of a price.
I've bought many knives from /u/MurrayCarter Those knives always arrive super sharp. He offers a mail in sharpening service:
As a disclaimer, I've never actually used his mail in service. I can't imagine they would do a bad job given my other experiences with them.
Alternatively, you could also purchase the instructional videos on his site which are great and some sharpening stones and learn how to do it yourself. The stones can usually be found cheaper elsewhere. If you are worried about damaging your knife, Victorinox makes a great cheap chef knife
There was a great suggestion earlier in this thread about a Victorinox knife that was recommended by Consumer Reports.
Here are a few that are slightly outside your price range (By about $15) that I wouldn't have any issues with using in my own cooking adventures :). All prices are listed in Canadian dollars.
Victorinox 8" Chef's knife - $36
Kai 6" Santoku - $51.38
Calphalon Katana 8" Chef's knife - $59
Calphalon Contemporary 8" Chef's knife - $29
For any and all of these, the first thing you'll want to do is go to a store that sells knives, and try a few before you find what you like. Hold them by the handle, and then hold them where the handle ends and meets the blade. Check the balance - When you're holding it by the handle, is the knife weighted evenly, front to back? Is there more weight towards the back or the front? If you were using this for 40 mins-1hr of prepping veggies and meat, would you be comfortable with it? Does the handle fit your hand, does the whole thing feel like a natural extension of your arm when you're chopping, slicing, etc?
For the price the Victorinox chef knife is the best you can buy. Their are much better knives at 5-10 times the price.
Welcome! Buy a cast iron skillet and this knife.
Now get started.
Just picked up this one on amazon... only had it about a week but I've been very pleased. The reviews are overwhelmingly positive and it was recommended in /r/cooking a few times. $30
Here's what I posted in an earlier thread about knives:
Don't waste your money on a set of knives, or even an expensive, heavy german one. Get a Victorinox 8-Inch Chef's Knife, a cute little French pairing knife, and, if you really need it, an offset bread knife.
You should spend much more time learning about how to properly sharpen and maintain a knife. That is vastly more important.
I use a sharp knife with very quick slashes. This knife to be exact. I love this thing. Never done sourdough though.
Epicurious is a good source for recipes online. You'll want to stick with recipes that have a lot of reviews and have 4 to 5 stars, so you know that the recipe is a good one. One common frustration for new cooks is that they fail to make good tasting dishes, but don't realize that the main problem is that they're working from bad recipes. Keep in mind that you'll want to stick to dishes with 4 to 8 ingredients and not too much prep work when you're first starting out.
Make recipes from Mark Bittman's minimalist column on the New York Times web site. There's a printed recipe and an instructional video for each one. He's entertaining and most of the recipes only have a few ingredients, they're also delicious. His cookbook, "How to Cook Everything" is a great all-purpose cookbook to have around.
You need to get past the pay wall to print the recipes from the New York Times, but that involves hitting the "X" or "Stop Loading" button in your browser window a second or so after the page loads.
Learn the basics of using a chef's knife, to make your slicing go more quickly and safely. When cutting with a chef's knife, use a pinch grip and protect the fingers of your "guiding hand" by curling the tips of your fingers inward, as shown here:
One of the most frequent things you're going to do, if you don't hate onions, is to chop or mince onions as prep work for your recipes. This is the best way to do it:
Good tools are important because they won't get in your way and they'll help you cook efficiently, I'll go ahead and mention some of the things I use in my kitchen that I'd have a very hard time doing without.
As for knives, I'd recommend a Forschner Victorinox Chef's knife with a Fibrox handle in the 8-inch or 10-inch size, they're under $30 and very good. You can do just about everything with a Chef's knife, you do not need expensive knives, please trust me on this one. You'll want to have it sharpened every 4 to 8 months or so if you're cooking about three or four times a week. Once you can no longer slice into the skin of a tomato easily, it's probably a good time to get it sharpened.
These spatulas are great, they're made of very thin, very flexible heat resistant nylon:
These are perfect for moving things around in the pan when you're sauteing or stir-frying, also great for scraping stuff away from the bottom of a nonstick pan so it doesn't burn, for instance risotto, polenta, a cornstarch-based pudding or scrambled eggs:
I prefer to use teflon-coated thick aluminum pans like this one (they often come with a blue heat-resistant removable handle, and can be found at restaurant supply stores and some discount stores, like Job Lot in the Northeast), never (never ever) touch them with metal utensils and they will last for a long time, I have a 12", two 10", and one 8":
For what you're spending, I'd throw a Victorinox 40520 Fibrox 8-Inch Chef's Knife in for under $30. Also can't recommended a $15 Kiwi cleaver enough.
you're set for a long time.
Total cost: $60, you'll have an extremely good knife and learn to actually take care of it. Grab the paring knife if you want too.
Glad it helped! The other thing I thought of is to have a good knife that you learn to maintain. You can get a great stainless steel 8" chef's knife for like $25 (this is the one I use):
a knife sharpener for $9 (also the one I use):
And a hone for $15 (I already had a hone with a knife set so can't speak to this one):
Watch a youtube video on how to hone, the sharpener is a no-brainer. Do it once a week or so and build good habits. I hone first before sharpening and then re-hone it. You'll have a stunningly sharp knife all the time, and build good habits in case you want to maintain a more delicate/expensive knife in the future!
I use 2 knives in my kitchen.
I have a shitty bread knife, but I don't do bread all that often so it works for me.. I'm more concerned with how sharp my knives are - and how to maintain an edge - than I am with what kind of knife I'm using. Instead of a paring knife, I use the 6" Boning Knife, partly because I'm very used to using one (I'm a Butcher).
Let me save you some cash
Well this is convenient then. It's even got a non-slip handle in case it gets bloody!
You don't need all those. Get this and a decent sharpener and you will be set for a long time.
This guy's got some good ideas.
I've always heard that any pot or pan you get should feel heavy enough to use to knock someone out.
To give you a couple of ideas on specific products:
I hear good things about this knife, but haven't tried it myself.
I admit I don't know how to sharpen a knife properly, but this device will bring a knife to a usable sharpness.
I also think that a good cookbook is extremely useful, if not essential. I like Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything" (both the standard and vegetarian versions).
This knife and this sharpener. Also, a bamboo cutting board (don't go too small, even with little kitchen space, a big one is better), a couple stainless mixing bowls and a couple silicone scrapers.
A pepper mill would also be a great gift.
If you want to include spices, the Spice House is my favorite, followed by Penzey's
what's your budget? unless it's pretty high, i'd go with a trusty set of victorinox blades. they're not expensive at all, but they're awesome. if you're doing professional stuff, you'll probably need at least an 8-inch chef's knife, a boning knife, and a paring knife or two. toss them in a knife roll with a sharpening steel, and you're good to go.
if you're planning on investing more in knives, i would say you simply have to go to a knife shop and hold them in your hand. look up a real knife shop in your area (not bed bath and beyond or anything like that), many of them will let you test them out on a board to see how they feel. good luck!
Perhaps I should have said "full bolster," but I think I have the meaning correct. In the link you referenced, I believe F, G & H are all parts of the bolster, right? By comparison, the Victorinox knife that's been mentioned many times in these comments has no bolster at all. Even the fully forged knives that I like have the bolster ground down at the return, like this.
But they aren't getting the job done. You're not cutting your veggies, you're pushing super hard on them until they break. Go home, try the paper test, watch as you can't cut shit. You may think everything is ok, until you try an actual sharp knife and realize you've been lying to yourself all along and that the old dull one was complete and utter shit. And you don't need expensive knives, one of my go to knives in my drawer is from Target, but I sharpen it once a year and use a honing steel before every use. Make all the excuses you want or learn. it's up to you. Glass cutting boards kill knives, your knife is dead. It's that simple. Get a thick plastic cutting board and either a sharpener or a new knife, you can have both for $45 total off amazon.
The knife I hear you can get for $25 other places and there are probably cheaper cutting boards out there, just don't get too thin or they will warp and not stay flat.
A good knife is always a good idea. That being said, there are knives out there that are cheaper than the one you're looking at. I have the Victorinox Fibrox 8" and I love it. From the first cut I made with it, I knew I had a good knife. It's a solid knife for a home cook. If you still want the santoku style blade, Victorinox also makes one with a Granton blade for about 1/4 the price.
One other point: if you do get a good knife, make sure you have a good place to store it. You don't want to just put it in with the rest of your cooking utensils; it will get all beat up and blunted very quickly. The best option is a heavy wood block with slots to put the knives in. But you can also get something like this. I have one that has slotted foam at the end to stick the knives in. Other maintenance items like a honing steel and a whet stone are good to consider as well.
you can get a nice knife for less than $40 on amazon. The company Victorinox makes AMAZING chef knives, like this one I got last year. It is super sharp, and I haven't had to sharpen it since I bought it.
In my opinion, the bare minimum of what you need is:
1) A decent chef's knife. This one comes recommended by Cook's Illustrated and is pretty cheap:
2) A good sized stainless steel saucepan.
3) A good sized stainless steel sautee pan.
4) Some heavy gauge aluminum jelly roll pans. Something like these:
5) Parchment paper.
Don't waste money on cheap cookie pans.
A great addition on top of this would be a good cast iron skillet and a cast iron Dutch Oven. I would shop secondhand market for these.
I would avoid aluminum (Non-clad) and non-stick cookware. The aluminum stuff reacts with acidic foods and the non-stick cookware flakes off eventually. Stick to stainless steel for the most bang for your buck.