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Do I need (want) a Santoku knife? battery-op pepper mill?

danna Dec 29, 2005 08:30 AM

So I have a Williams Sonoma gift card burning up my wallet. I love the look of Global knives. I don't really think I need anything, but I was wondering if a Santoku would make me happy. I normally use my Henkles 8 in chef's knife for everything.

Or maybe I need a flexible boning knife? I have a global one-sided sushi knife that's beautiful, but would I be better at skinning filets, etc. if I had a flexy one?

Battery operated peper mill so I'm not handling the mill w/ TWO hands covered in raw meat juice? Chinois? copper paella pan? cake turntable? Riedles? Blow it all on glaceed apricots and cyrstallized ginger? I can't decide :-)

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    Ariel RE: danna Dec 29, 2005 08:50 AM

    I really like WS hotel table linens They look crisp on the table and aren't so expensive that you freak if someone spills red wine.I cycle thru a tablecloth or 2 every year and use the dinner and cocktail napkins as everyday linens. When they get the mystery washing machine stains , they get tossed.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ariel
      Candy RE: Ariel Dec 29, 2005 09:58 AM

      My only problem with the linens is that they are cut off grain and do not fold evenly or drape evenly. As for red wine, a bit of salt poured on it immediately will keep the stain from setting and if you miss the opportunity for salt, a soak in club soda before washing will lift the spot when it is laundered.

      1. re: Candy
        KRS RE: Candy Dec 29, 2005 10:56 AM

        Google wine stain remover. There are any number of specialized products, such as Wine Away and Stain Rx.

    2. r
      rudeboy RE: danna Dec 29, 2005 09:05 AM

      I used my standard Chef's knife for years. My sis got me a Santuko last Christmas, and I gravitated to it. Now, it's the knife that I pull out first. For me, it just handles better for overall knife work. I discovered that I don't use the pointy end of my Chef's anyhow.

      4 Replies
      1. re: rudeboy
        mshpook RE: rudeboy Dec 29, 2005 10:23 AM

        Ditto. Since I started using the Santoku knives (I have two sizes) I really do not use any of my chef's knives. The santoku knives are so versatile!

        1. re: rudeboy
          Hungry Celeste RE: rudeboy Dec 29, 2005 10:24 AM

          I feel the same way about my santoku...have the 6 in henckels chef's knife, and I hardly use it anymore. I do use the chef's knife for heavy duty stuff, like disjointing chicken parts & hacking apart ribs.
          Now, if I had a WS gift card burning in my pocket, I'd buy a mandoline.

          1. re: rudeboy
            Chi-Girl RE: rudeboy Dec 29, 2005 11:26 AM

            Love my Santuko and I use it for almost everything. Stays sharp and it fits well in my small hands and in my future hubby's. I used to think people were crazy for spending big bucks on knives but it's worth it and I would definitely go Global. Good luck!

            1. re: rudeboy
              Dommy! RE: rudeboy Dec 29, 2005 07:04 PM

              I also love mine. I am a very cautious person by nature so my BIG chef's knife has always intimidated me. :P

              However, BF does't care for it too much... he perfer the heft and longer blade of Chef's knife. I say, test them out to see if you like their 'feel'


            2. d
              Dev RE: danna Dec 29, 2005 09:12 AM

              I'm in exactly the same boat -- still hanging onto a big g/t leftover from duplicates of wedding gifts. (A girl can only use so many Emile Henry casseroles of the same size.) Thanks for asking this question. Every time I go to use the g/t in their store, I look at the items and think "I can get this slow cooker (or whatever) somewhere else for less" and leave empty-handed.

              6 Replies
              1. re: Dev
                Ellen RE: Dev Dec 29, 2005 09:26 AM

                Actually, this may be the right time to go to WS to use your certificate. They usually mark down some of their things pretty seriously (up to 75%) right after Christmas, especially lines they want to discontinue. The question is will you want what they marked down?

                1. re: Dev
                  heidipie RE: Dev Dec 29, 2005 12:37 PM

                  LOL, I've been married five years and still haven't used all my Williams-Sonoma gift credit! Honestly, they're just so expensive and with less selection than other places I can get to.

                  I parlayed all my various unwanted Macy's wedding gifts into a set of Global knives (but not a santoku), and I love them. I don't feel I'm missing anything in the knife department.

                  One thing I got at W-S was one of their gorgeous hand-hammered copper braising pots. And I had to bring it right back after one use, because the tin lining began to wear off immediately. This was a very expensive pan. I've soured on W-S since then, and have just been carrying around that green credit slip in my wallet.

                  1. re: heidipie
                    heidipie RE: heidipie Dec 29, 2005 12:50 PM

                    Just looked at the W-S website, which reminded me of another thing from there that I didn't like, their oil can. It dribbled oil everywhere. I returned that too.

                    1. re: heidipie
                      danna RE: heidipie Jan 3, 2006 02:32 PM

                      hmmm. I didn't notice the dribbling, but I did notice that my olive oil seemed to go stale faster in the oil can than in glass. Not sure why.

                      I use the pretty little thing to water the houseplants now.

                    2. re: heidipie
                      Dev RE: heidipie Dec 29, 2005 02:21 PM

                      Well I just returned from W-S and I still didn't make much of a dent in the card. It's so frustrating! I did manage to buy a nice rolling pin and a few odds and ends, but nothing special. (I love my tapered rolling pin, but when I want to roll out puffed pastry into a rectangle for my gruyere tart, it's not very helpful.)

                      I think they were resetting the store today, so not only did I find not much, but I was bumped and pushed around by employees who really didn't want us there. *sigh*

                      Thanks for the tip on the copper pan, though sorry you learned the hard way.

                    3. re: Dev
                      Dommy! RE: Dev Dec 29, 2005 07:01 PM

                      Also in the same boat... And I asked a friend and she said you can use WS Gift Cards at Pottery Barn Stores. We're in the market for a Bed and although my card will be a drop in the bucket, every little bit helps! :)


                    4. p
                      pitu RE: danna Dec 29, 2005 10:03 AM

                      maybe you have enough for whatever big treat you want AND a battery op pepper mill. A one handed battery operated pepper mill is pretty great...and not very expensive.

                      Whatever you do, use the gift certificate. It IS pretty easy to walk out the door emptyhanded, and then lose the paperwork...

                      1. j
                        jen kalb RE: danna Dec 29, 2005 06:51 PM

                        forget about the flexible boning knife. I have had one gathering dust for 20 years. Im sure with special skills I would have found a use for it. But not for general kitchen use.

                        I used to love shopping at WS for specialty glassware, linens etc. - unusual items priced rather reasonably - but I find the shrine to cooking with ritual items effect of the stores annoying these days. Why not choose something that will be expensive anywhere and use up your card - silicon spatulas, berndes cookware, wingeglasses, etc?

                        1. n
                          Niki Rothman RE: danna Dec 31, 2005 12:12 AM

                          I had the same thought as you - I have a great chef's knife that I use for almost everything, so what do I need a santoku knife for? Well, I saw one at Ross for really cheap and thought - well, what have I got to use, if I don't like or need it I'll just return it. Well... I LOVE IT! I use it more than my old standby chef's knife (which is a high quality knife, coincidentally purchased fron Williams Sonoma)
                          The santoku knife has a whole different balance than the chef's - I find I actually cut faster with it. Get a santoku and if you are not hooked - return it.

                          1. SteveTimko RE: danna Oct 23, 2013 02:39 PM

                            Are opinions still positive about the Santoku knives? I'm thinking of buying one. I've never used one but I like the look.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: SteveTimko
                              juster RE: SteveTimko Oct 23, 2013 06:59 PM

                              I have chef's knives, which I do use, but the santoku is my go-to. They're great.

                              1. re: juster
                                DuffyH RE: juster Oct 23, 2013 08:05 PM

                                Agree. I've got 6" & 8" chefs, but reach for the 7" Santoku about 90% of the time. If I were buying today, I'd go for the Santoku, and get a chef's knife later, if I felt the need.

                              2. re: SteveTimko
                                Chemicalkinetics RE: SteveTimko Oct 23, 2013 07:36 PM

                                <Are opinions still positive about the Santoku knives?>

                                I don't think it has ever been negative. Santoku is a good knife, but you really only need either a Santoku or a European Che'fs knife. You don't need both.

                                I have both. They are both good for different reasons. Thanks.

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