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Thread: chef knives of doom

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    Member malus's Avatar
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    Default chef knives of doom

    I have an intense desire to own a Shun chef's knife. They're sold in the states at Williams-Sonoma, but they are hand made like samurai swords in Japan. Does anyone know anything about getting them in Japan or something similar?

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    I have a feeling you should maybe wait till you get to Japan to buy a knife. I love cooking and I intend to have a little field trip to Kappabashi in Tokyo and get myself a nice knife.

    The selection might be better and the prices also. I'm bringing a small Opinel petty knife, a peeler and a brand new wooden spoon from Dehillerin cooking store in Paris.

    Which Shun were you interested in?

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    Member malus's Avatar
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    finally, a cooking enthusiast. It's the Shun Classic MD0707 10" chef's: http://www.kershawknives.com/productdetails.php?id=255 that I'm after. I'd never heard of the Opinel before; I think I need one now. I normally carry a Benchmade pocket knife for utility uses, but I'm going to leave it behind because I don't think the Japanese would appreciate it.

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    Senior Member MacGowan's Avatar
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    How much would one (or even a set of these) go for in Japan? My dad is a mad chef and a samurai kitchen knives would make the ideal christmas present for him, provided I don't have to sell a kidney to afford them.

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    DMF
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    well Kochi is meant to make good knives, they used to make swords but now changed over to making knives instead.

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    Member malus's Avatar
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    They're pretty cheap in the states; the knife I was talking about above goes for about $125. I'd be surprised if you could find a better deal in Japan, now that I think about it. But you might be able to find variety or something rare.

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    Opinel is a French brand, the folding knife is just amazing to cook on the road.
    It's nothing fancy, but it's well made and doesn't attract attention.

    http://www.opinel.com/www-accueil-5-UK.html

    I might also leave my Leatherman Squirt S4 that I carry with me all the time.

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    Senior Member ciaobebe's Avatar
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    I'm not sure if I've seen Shuns in Kappabashi, but you can definitely pick up some great knives there. In fact, if you're not completely set on the Shun I recommend that you pick up a Japanese made knife instead. You can get something really unique and it will cost you about half as much as you'd pay in your home country. I really like the multi-layered ones (Damascus steel), and you can get them in high carbon or stainless (I recommend stainless unless you are really on top of the high carbon it will rust). I'm still looking for the perfect one, because I'm left-handed, so finding a Japanese knife that works for me is a little harder-for now I'm using a 9" Global Pro that I picked up at Union several years ago. Some good shops in Kappabashi are Union Commerce, Kama Asa, and Tsubaya. You can also get some great knives at Aritsugu (they have a small shop in Tsukiji or a really nice one in the Nishiki-koji market in Kyoto. If you live in Osaka, there is also a kitchen supply area near Namba station where they have some good knife shops.

  9. #9
    Senior Member swedeinshiga's Avatar
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    chef knives in Japan....................there are millions of brands, going from a local maker to major companies. I got myself one and made by a smith in our local area and it was about 24000 yen......................for a decent one it is between 10 000-30 000 yen

  10. #10
    Pandilex
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    i bought one for 105 yen, it was made by an ancient blacksmith called daiso-sama

    i also bought a sharpening stone for 105 yen, and now it slices through anything, even cats and chair legs

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    I got an awesome ceramic knife from the local home centre. Cuts like a dream, including through your fingers the first few times.
    * And the Lord said unto John "Come forth and receive eternal life." But John came fifth and won a toaster. *

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    Senior Member Wakatta's Avatar
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    I bought a fairly cheap ($10) all-purpose knife in the store here and was astounded by what a good, sharp knife it proved to be. It just falls right through.

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    Member malus's Avatar
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    Shuns are made in Seki-city, from that crazy "1000 fold" samurai sword metal, not Damascus. I'm pretty sure anything claiming to be true Damascus is lying because human beings only recently rediscovered how to make the stuff.
    I am really interested in locally-made knives, however. Pandi and Swedeinshiga, what cities did ya'll get those in?

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    Senior Member ciaobebe's Avatar
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    If you read Pandi's post carefully, you'll see that he actually bought his at the 100 yen shop. Although they'll get you by during your time in Japan, they're certainly not something that you'll want to take home. If you're a knife enthusiast (and it sounds like you are) I wouldn't bother with the 100 yen shop at least not for cookware)

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    Senior Member Narnia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andreyla
    I got an awesome ceramic knife from the local home centre. Cuts like a dream, including through your fingers the first few times.
    I was wondering about those ceramic knives. Wanted to buy one for my father, but I think he said they could not go in the dishwasher or something
    Dr Peterson: 'I'm a schoolteacher'
    Porter at Empire Hotel: 'Thought so: they always look as if they've lost something' -From "Spellbound"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Narnia
    Quote Originally Posted by andreyla
    I got an awesome ceramic knife from the local home centre. Cuts like a dream, including through your fingers the first few times.
    I was wondering about those ceramic knives. Wanted to buy one for my father, but I think he said they could not go in the dishwasher or something
    No, pretty sure they can. It's awesome, no rust, no blunting, and it's pretty, pearly white.
    * And the Lord said unto John "Come forth and receive eternal life." But John came fifth and won a toaster. *

  17. #17
    Senior Member ciaobebe's Avatar
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    Just like any knife, of course you can put them in the dishwasher, and they won't fall apart or anything, but it still isn't good for them. They will dull faster if you wash them in the dishwasher. Any high-quality knife should be washed by hand (and super-abrasive sponges like Scotch Brites should be avoided too, since they'll scratch the steel).

    If you're interested in Japanese knives, check out this recent article from Saveur magazine http://www.saveur.com/article/Kitche...Japanese-Knife but beware, the deba and usuba are switched in the picture (that is, the deba is the one on the left)

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