Opinions please

Joined Jul 3, 2020
Hi all

First post but been a lurker for a while. Love reading all the chat and the wealth of experience on show. I love cooking but never went in that direction professionally. I’ve played around with knives for a few years and have decided to treat myself to a Japanese Gyuto. I have been doing a bit of research and think I’ve narrowed it down to the following below. Love to hear your opinions, good, bad, indifferent or alternatives if you think I’m wide of the mark. UK based, right handed, looking to a budget of £300 - £450.

Kato VG-10 Gyuto Damascus 210mm (8.3")

Saji Gyuto Damascus VG-10 [various models] + FREE Saya

Been offered a Tanaka Gyuto 210mm with a custom handle to match my higher end price.

Also what’s your experience with striking deals vs list price? Is that not the done thing in the knife world or should I barter?

Lastly whats the deal with Yaxell Super Gou Gyutos? Loverly looking and seem to be the business in a couple of YouTube vids I’ve watched but loads of hate towards them on the net?

Many thanks in advance.....
Joined Apr 25, 2014
Uh that Kato vg-10 looks like an OEM blade I have from another company i think it was only $150 ish with a different handle. By that metric I'd say it's a rip off .

I buy a lot of knives used on kitchenknifeforums. Nothing wrong with that if it's in good condition and you're gonna sharpen it yourselfa nyway.

What steel tanaka? If it's not the R2/Sg2 then it's probably too much for tanaka 210. Blue steel or ginsan ones aren't that much from what I remember. Even with a special handle. But I'm not a custom handle guy; mostly I don't care and it doesn't add value for me. Custom handles are denser heavier woods and they will affect the balance if you care about that kind of thing. I want blade heavy with light handles. That's what I'm used to. So for myself I rarely pay more for something I find less functional.
Joined Apr 29, 2019
my probably unpopular opinion

as a home cook, if youre looking to spend over $100, youre getting a toy, not a tool. Not that theres anything wrong with that, everyone needs a hobby.

This style of high-end, japanese knives - theyre made really with the idea of professional use, theyre made to hold a razor edge, at the cost of wanting constant honing, sharpening and general upkeep. With the idea in mind for 8+ hours of solid workhorse use, daily. If you want to get into that and have the time and inclination, if youre excited to learn the use of sharpening stones and whetstones and strops, go for it!

i have 3 main use knives in my repertoire , petties, filletings, bonings and serrated aside. A £20 "kuma" western style chefs knife, an £80 kiritsuke (seriously unparalleled for any kind of vegetable preparation, from cleaning and dicing a melon to brunoise an onion), and a "Shun" chefs knife, which was a gift but im gonna go and assume based on the brand and quality that it was worth £150+

i use the kuma, daily. i take it to work, and i use it when i cook at home. i use a mechanical lever-based knife sharpener, i rarely hone, and it does 80% of functions without a complaint

long-story-short, toys are fun, but if youre of modest means and simply want to cook, unhindered by poor quality tools, daily for yourself and your friends - get a well-known mid-tier brand that suits your style of preparation. be it a chefs knife, santoku, kiritsuke, gyuto or even a hatchet. The right knife for the right person. Get your style down and you wont need a $300 knife.
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