We carved five turkeys, two beef roasts, a pork roast, and a ham, and the Messermeister 2 Piece Avanta Pakkawood Kullenschliff Carving Set is our pick based on good looks, great performance, and a nice price. Dear Wirecutter: Will an Electric Sharpener Ruin Your Expensive Chef’s Knife? This means it’s less likely to chip (which the Tojiro DP F-808 did after we used it to cut hard butternut squash). Likewise, if your once-nice knife has been used and abused and never sharpened—or sharpened improperly—it’s time for a new one. Out of the box, this Mac model sliced straight through paper, which is something our budget pick, the Victorinox Fibrox Pro 8-Inch Chef’s Knife, couldn’t manage. Senior staff writer Michael Sullivan has been using the Tojiro at home since 2017 and said that, as of late 2020, “It continues to hold its razor-sharp edge with minimal sharpening. Don’t get us wrong, it’s still pretty sharp, and it allowed us to dice onions, julienne carrots, and halve a butternut squash with relative ease and accuracy. Brendan McDermott, chef instructor of knife skills, phone interview, February 27, 2015, Murray Carter, 17th-generation Yoshimoto Bladesmith, phone interview, March 27, 2015, Wendy Yang, showroom manager at Korin Japanese Trading, email interview, April 27, 2015, Howard Nourieli, owner of Bowery Kitchen Supplies, email interview, March 18, 2015, Chad Ward, An Edge in the Kitchen: The Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Knives, June 10, 2008, Daniel Rose, executive chef, Le Coucou, New York City, in-person interview, August 8, 2017, Scott Markowitz, sous chef, Le Coucou, New York City, in-person interview, August 8, 2017, Adam Brach, cook, Le Coucou, New York City, in-person interview, August 8, 2017, Shinji Nagasuga, cook, Le Coucou, New York City, in-person interview, August 8, 2017, Chef’s Knives (subscription required), Cook’s Illustrated, Betty Gold, 12 Best Chef’s Knives, According to Cooking Experts, Good Housekeeping, July 24, 2017. Mac's most popular chef knife is perfectly balanced, so you never feel at risk of losing control of the blade. Length: Chef’s knife blades range from 6 to 14 inches long. By comparison, at their thickest parts, the Togiharu Molybdenum comes in at 0.0754 inch, the Tojiro DP F-808 at 0.0817 inch, and the Global G-2 at 0.0754 inch. There is also a warranty and easy refunds or exchanges in the event of … We couldn’t test all of the possible contenders that fit our criteria, so we’ve focused on popular, widely available knives. In our tests, the thin, razor-sharp edge cut through vegetables with the precision of a scalpel. Coming from a forged German chef's knife, the MAC is far more nimble and versatile. They stay pretty but don’t hold much of an edge. The Togiharu Molybdenum Gyuto is a classic lightweight gyuto. To be honest, all the Japanese knives did a superb job on our basil test, because they’re sharper and thinner, whereas the six budget knives we tested ($20 to $40 models) turned the basil black within five minutes. You can purchase this knife for about $145, which is not the most affordable but still a reasonable price for the quality it has. We’ve had a Mac MTH-80 in regular rotation in our test kitchen since 2015, and it’s still our favorite knife. For the full ranking, see below. You’ll know it’s time when you have to work to get through skins of tomatoes or cucumbers. And it’s attractive. Since chefs and cooks are very passionate about their knives, we wanted their unbridled opinions of our favorites. We think an 8-inch knife is the perfect length for most people because it’s long enough to halve large vegetables but still manageable for most home cooks. When a blade is thin and made from a hard steel, the edge can take and hold a tight angle. But if you want to sharpen our budget pick, a German steel blade, or an inexpensive stamped blade, go ahead and try one of our knife sharpener picks. It’s easy to care for a knife—it just takes attention and two extra minutes. That said, most of the chef’s knives we tested had full tangs with riveted handles. Testers liked chopping vegetables with the Tojiro because of its sharpness, control, and easy handling. However, most testers preferred the Victorinox for its maneuverability and comfortable feel, compared with the other budget knives we tried. Classic 8. Shun amazon.com. After some education and a lot of practice, you’ll be able to sharpen any old knife to a pro-style edge. We’ve ruled out any small-batch blade crafters, since forging a knife by hand is time consuming, costly, and usually a custom-order affair. Their blades have an even bevel (meaning both sides are ground to the same angle) and tend to be made of softer steel, so they can lose their edge more quickly. Sign up for our newsletter to receive weekly recommendations about seasonal and trending products. The Classic Ikon’s blade is thicker than the MTH-80’s, measuring 0.1187 inch at the spine. At 6.6 ounces, the Mac MTH-80 is lighter than a German drop-forged knife but heavier and sturdier-feeling than many gyutos. But we can’t recommend this Five Two knife because it’s made from a low-grade steel (420J2) with a Rockwell hardness of 52 HRC—which is pretty soft for a kitchen knife. It was the standout favorite for all our testers, regardless of their cutting style or the size of their hands. It can be used for a wide range of tasks including cutting, mincing, and chopping without losing its edge. A ceramic rod is better because it’s harder than the hardest steel but has a smooth grit, so it won’t chew up the edge of your knife while it realigns the edge. Some chef’s knives have oval dimples carved just above the edge. That thinner blade makes the Classic Ikon a tad lighter than other German knives, and it means that over the long run, it will be able to take a sharper edge than the thicker knives. Too many are simply trying to capitalize on affiliate revenue. Steel at the lower end of the scale is softer and more durable. If you’re accustomed to the feel of a heavier German knife, the Wüsthof Classic Ikon 8-Inch Cook’s Knife is sharp and sturdy, and it fits our criteria for a good knife. Hold the handle with the edge facing downward and look along the spine to make sure the blade is perfectly straight. We also recommend Wüsthof’s Classic Ikon in our guide to knife sets. Over the course of my two-decade (and counting) culinary career, I’ve cooked in fine-dining restaurants, brewpubs, small cafés, private homes, and test kitchens. Photo: Michael Hession, Senior editor Marguerite Preston (foreground) and New York Times food editor Sam Sifton tested chef’s knives in our test kitchen. Yes. This is the unboxing and initial cut test of the MAC PROFESSIONAL SERIES 8" CHEF'S KNIFE WITH DIMPLES. A chef’s knife (also sometimes called a cook’s knife) is a firm, large bladed, all-purpose kitchen knife. Photo: Michael Hession, We tested chef’s knives on a bounty of produce. But it has a slightly less durable blade, and the handle doesn’t provide as much knuckle clearance. I’ve also covered knives for this site for more than two years, racking up over 120 hours of research and testing. This knife is expected to last for many years and comes with a 25-year warranty. We don’t think this feature is its biggest selling point. For this guide, we chose to exclude full-bolster knives from our tests. And its excellent edge retention means that, with proper care, the Mac will stay sharp for a long time. In fact, we had the same issues using the Made In that we did with the strikingly similar Zwilling Pro. Do not, by any means, let your edge hit glass, granite, marble, or ceramics—not even a quick slice on a dinner plate. Bolster: Bolsters are metal cuffs that can help balance knives with a heavy blade—such as the Wüsthof Classic Ikon—where you want more weight in the handle. If you’re investing in a quality, expensive knife, like our main pick, we still believe that a whetstone used properly will provide the sharpest, smoothest edge. Just like balance, comfort is a personal thing. Read Reviews Mac Superior 5.1 in. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Decent high-carbon steel knives should register anywhere between 55 HRC and 64 HRC. The curve of the blade was too severe and made chopping difficult. The factory edge isn’t as sharp as that of our other picks, so in our tests it left us with split carrots and unevenly halved butternut squash. It’s not too bulky for folks with small hands, and our larger-handed testers had enough knuckle clearance from the cutting board. Chromium protects against corrosion and is what makes the knife stainless, while molybdenum and vanadium increase machinability and wear resistance, and refine the grain. But we found the handle uncomfortable due to the sharp edges on the spine, which kept digging into our forefingers. The Mac Knife Chef Series Hollow edge is an extremely sharp and durable Japanese knife. If you don’t want a magnetic strip mounted to your wall, buy a blade guard. So factors such as sharpness, edge retention, durability, versatility, and easy maintenance are key to the performance of any good chef’s knife. The belly of the blade has a pronounced curve that tapers to a sharp tip, which is best if you prefer to cut using a. The late Charlie Trotter endorsed Mac's Professional Knife Series. She is perfectly happy to leave all that behind to be a full-time kitchen-gear nerd. Mac’s proprietary steel isn’t as brittle as the super-hard Japanese VG-10 steel that manufacturers use for most gyuto knives. This flatter edge of a Mac Knife offers less resistance making the knife quicker and sharper. A half-bolster or bolsterless knife will be more blade-heavy, whereas a full bolster throws more weight to the handle. We then sent the top-performing knives to the kitchen at Le Coucou in New York City (the James Beard Foundation’s Best New Restaurant of 2017), where the cooks used them for prep and during service. If you’re going to be cutting lots of sticky things on your cutting board, the Mac chef knife is one of the best tools for the job. I've only recently started buying Japanese knives (2 from Mac, one from Shun) and so far am very happy. Of all the pieces in a cutlery set, the chef’s knife is the most versatile and gets the most use. The G-2 also comes highly rated by Cooking For Engineers. It's a perfect meld of Western and Japanese design. Photo: Michael Hession. Its razor-sharp edge, comfortable handle, and agile blade make chopping tasks much easier, which in turn cuts down on meal-prep time. The last thing you want is to have to … Adam Brach, sauté cook at Le Coucou, said, “I’m pretty sure [out of all the cooks] I do the most knife work in the morning as far as chopping shallots and onions and stuff. As it turns out, the company’s website recommends the knife not be used for cutting pumpkin (or frozen foods), because the hard vegetable can chip your blade. As the manufacturer states, this knife does require a little extra attention to prevent the blade from staining. If you want a more stain-resistant knife, get a Wüsthof. MAC Knives are made in Japan using high carbon steel, chrome, vanadium, molybdenum, and tungsten. As New York Times food editor Sam Sifton told us during testing, “[A good knife] is the balance of utility and the thing that moves your heart.”. 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