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Dec 29, 2007 10:23 AM

J.A. Henckels Knives Question

As a Christmas gift for my wife I purchased a 10 piece "Forged Block Set" of Henckel knives from COSTCO for $169.00. I then went to Macy's and bought a 6" Henckel "Professional "S" knife. I've googled J.A. Henckel AG to try to find out what the "Professional S" designation means but can't find anything. Does anyone out there know? Also should I take the 10 Piece Forged Block Set back and buy the Professional S knives. They are more expensive and available on EBay. What's the difference?

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  1. As far as I can tell, the Pro S line sports triple riviting; possibly more metal in the blade.

    Tang is the same shape as the handle, which is 2 piece - 4 Star has a narrower tang, 1 piece handle, not as good.

    Henkels has an assembly line edge hardening technique somewhat like a fine sword, better than the average knife. Our Costco set, an impulse purchase for that day's dinner, has held up surprisingly well.

    1. Look at each knife and see if it says "Germany" or "International" on it.
      I believe that the "Forged Block Set" may be made in Spain, China or somewhere else while the "Professional S" series might be of German origin. (Not remembering clearly from my last knife run) Personally, I'd spend the extra money on the "S" series knives since I like the handles better and I believe the quality is a step up from the "Forged Block" set.
      Also, as long as you have a good quality Chef's knive, Slicer, Paring knife and Bread knife, the other knives in the "set" may not be needed unless it included steak knives.
      Sometimes picking and choosing your knives can work better since you know what you'll be working on and what tools you'll need. Much as I can appreciate a beautiful Japanese sushi-style knife, I'd never use it, but my Chef's knife's used on a daily basis and I love my Kitchen Shears. A block is a nice way to store things if you have the counter space, but since we don't, we have a magnetic strip above the sink which is great. BTW, Bed, Bath & Beyond carries Henckels as well are are always send out coupons in the mail. Good Luck and Happy Shopping!

      1. Thanks to both of you for responding...great information...! BTW the COSTCO Forgerd Block Set knives were made in Spain, the sharpening steel was made in Germany and the block was made in China. I think we will keep the German made 6" Professional knife and return the Forged Block Set. Then we will take BigWoodenSpoon's suggestion and pick up only the professional knives that my wife will actually use. Thanks again.

        1. I have three Henckels Pro S knives (10" chef, 7" veg and 4" paring) and love each one - they should be the same full-tang, three riveted knives as the set from Costco (I assume these are the international models coming from Spain). The Pro S do indeed hail from Germany and have the "ice hardened" designation, which results in stronger than normal steel. If have tried out the Henckels Four Star and while I think they are ok knives, they are lighter and I personally prefer the Pro S'. Whether it's worth the extra expense is in the eye of the beholder (and your bank account). Enjoy the knives...