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Good knife rec needed

Want to get the hubby an upgraded chef's knife for Xmas. We currenly have a so-so quality 8" Wustof from about 15 yrs ago that has got quite a few nicks and is staying sharp for less and less time. I would like something in the $100 range and not sure if I should stick to traditional chef's knife or go for Santuko type. What else should I look for? I'd like this one to last 30 years - we take pretty good care of them (use a sharpening stick, keep the blade in a molded plastic cover, hand wash and dry etc), but use it A LOT.

Thanks!

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  1. It sounds like the reasons the knife you have is staying sharp for a shorter and shorter length of time is because it needs to be reground and it's being used all the time. The sharpening steel is a misnomer. It doesn't actually remove metal, it simply straightens out the edge. At some point the edge rounds over and it needs to be reground. To see what condition your knife is in, hold it at chest level looking directly down at the edge in a room with bright overhead light (or take it outside in the sun). If you can see any light reflecting off the edge, it means the edge is rounded over and needs to be reground.

    Now if this is the go to knife in the kitchen and you buy one more like it, then you will extend the life of both edges quite a bit.

    You have lots of options in the $100 range, but the question is this...does your husband use the knife mostly on meat or veggies. If the answer is veggies, then get him the Santoku style knife.

    Hope that helps.

    1. jcanncuk,
      The forged Wustof knife should be a lifetime purchase, so I have to wonder if you have had it professionally sharpened as recommended. The use of a steel will keep the edge in shape, but all knives should be professionally sharpened at least once, and maybe twice a year.
      I have a forged chefs knife that is 15 years old, and is used vigorously in commercial kitchens, and the edge has never been nicked. Scratches on the side of a forged blade are the proud signs of patina, but a nicked blade is proof that is has been abused by a uncaring owner.

      A santuko blade is not a replacement for a chef's knife, but it does have its place in a knife arsenal for a well equipped foodie.

      1. Just curious - where would you use a Santuko in place of a chef's knife?

        We eat meat rarely at home so 99% of our chopping is veggies (well, and cheese, but not with the chef's knife!) including a lot of Asian veggies, squash, etc. which tend to be hard to chop & seem tough on the knife.

        1. I'd vote for a professional sharpening, which won't cost much at all and will
          make using the knife *so* much more pleasurable, as well as a lot safer. And
          then go get a santuko. It sounds like you folks do a lot of cutting, so having a
          second, different knife in the arsenal won't be a waste. I heart my Shun, but they're
          built for right handed people (the handle is shaped interestingly) so if hubby's
          a southpaw, I wouldn't recommend it.

          And when you get the old guy sharpened, try to remember what it's like so when
          it's not like that anymore, you go get it done again. A sharp knife is a safe knife.

          1. Ditto on what Chuckles said: buy a nice Santuko for a gift and get the Wusthoff sharpened up for continued use.