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Old 12-31-2013, 01:23 PM   #1
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First Knife for Professional Purposes

Hello everyone, I am looking to buy a quality chefs knife for working professionally in a kitchen.

I really have no knowledge on knives, and have been trying to read a lot, but there are so many different opinions. It's a bit overwhelming.

Any advice on knives to buy, kits to buy, sharpening tools, would all be very helpful.

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Old 12-31-2013, 08:26 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc2123 View Post
Hello everyone, I am looking to buy a quality chefs knife for working professionally in a kitchen.

I really have no knowledge on knives, and have been trying to read a lot, but there are so many different opinions. It's a bit overwhelming.

Any advice on knives to buy, kits to buy, sharpening tools, would all be very helpful.
This question is the cook's equivalent to inquiring among boaters who makes the best anchor. Friendships have ended over the answers.

You will find many different responses as everyone likes different things. For me, I found a set that I really like, but also purchased a few specific knives that simply felt right in my hand. Those special knives are my go-to knives.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:47 PM   #3
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I hope you're buying this knife for yourself and not someone else.

One of the first things to be considered is how the knife feels in your hand so that lets out internet shopping, or shopping for someone else. Kathleen is right about a multitude of opinions on the best professional knife. The bottom line is if the grip and balance of the knife in your hand isn't just right, the most expensive knife on the market will be worthless to you.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:49 PM   #4
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Knives are personal. You have to go and get the feel of the knife. The ones that are comfortable in your hand are the ones you should be getting. Any answers you get on line are moot. It is a matter of the 'feel' of the knife.
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Old 12-31-2013, 11:26 PM   #5
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Kayelle and Addie are right on! Go to a store where they let you handle the knife, and hopefully cut with it. Good cookware stores will do this, they will also have nice selections of both Asian and Western knives.
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Old 01-02-2014, 12:40 PM   #6
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If you are going to use it professionally, shouldn't the employer be buying this knife for you?
Or is the employer allowing you to pick your knife?

I am just curious as to the nature of the "working professionally"?

I will say you are off to a good start as you are looking to buy one (1) knife, not a set.
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Old 01-03-2014, 10:16 AM   #7
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If you are going to use it professionally, shouldn't the employer be buying this knife for you?
Or is the employer allowing you to pick your knife?

I am just curious as to the nature of the "working professionally"?

I will say you are off to a good start as you are looking to buy one (1) knife, not a set.
I'm not a professional chef, but from what I've seen on the tube, professional chefs provide their own "tools of the trade" when it comes to cutlery. In my occupation, I'm required to provide the basic tools needed.
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:04 AM   #8
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I'm not a professional chef, but from what I've seen on the tube, professional chefs provide their own "tools of the trade" when it comes to cutlery. In my occupation, I'm required to provide the basic tools needed.
I also was required to buy my own basic tools. It makes sense. I was an electrician for 40 years.

But in a kitchen, how do they keep your knife and other basic tools separated from the other chefs tools?
I was able to take my basic (tool pouch) hand tools home after work. Unless I was in a factory then I was able to lock up my toolbox or a strongbox/gangbox was provided and it was locked up before we left.
I am just curious as to the arrangement in a "professional" kitchen.

Would seem everyone having there own stuff might be a problem?

Hence my question.
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Old 01-03-2014, 12:04 PM   #9
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Well the folks in the kitchen with missing digits picked up the wrong tools. Otherwise its an unspoken rule. Basically, keep yourself and your hands out of my station.
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Old 01-03-2014, 05:44 PM   #10
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Wink Another notch in the handle of the six shooter

Quote:
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Well the folks in the kitchen with missing digits picked up the wrong tools. Otherwise its an unspoken rule. Basically, keep yourself and your hands out of my station.
My first husband one day told me about a new chef that came aboard in the kitchen on the ship where he worked. One of the older chefs showed him his knives. In the handle of each of his knives he had a gash or two and explained to the new chef that those represented the fingers of folks who tried to use his knives. It wasn't true, but it sure kept other cooks in the kitchen from even thinking about reaching for his knives.
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Old 01-04-2014, 12:49 PM   #11
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Well the folks in the kitchen with missing digits picked up the wrong tools. Otherwise its an unspoken rule. Basically, keep yourself and your hands out of my station.
What happens when you go home and another chef has your station?
Really I am asking.
I know I would never leave my tools out when i was not present.


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My first husband one day told me about a new chef that came aboard in the kitchen on the ship where he worked. One of the older chefs showed him his knives. In the handle of each of his knives he had a gash or two and explained to the new chef that those represented the fingers of folks who tried to use his knives. It wasn't true, but it sure kept other cooks in the kitchen from even thinking about reaching for his knives.
I think I am seeing the procedure. Chef supplies his own knives. Tells other restaurant employees to keep their hands off.

That would have never worked in my profession. A lock was required.
We must remember a restaurant in many instances is open for lunch and dinner. Different employees.
Must be an unwritten or written rule in professional kitchens?

I think I can wrap my mind around how this would work in this setting. But I would also imagine quite a few missing fingers.
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Old 01-04-2014, 07:19 PM   #12
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What happens when you go home and another chef has your station?
Really I am asking.
I know I would never leave my tools out when i was not present.

I would have a knife roll and they would go with me when I leave. You would need to take them home for sharpening anyways.
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Old 01-04-2014, 07:43 PM   #13
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I'm not a professional chef, but from what I've seen on the tube, professional chefs provide their own "tools of the trade" when it comes to cutlery. In my occupation, I'm required to provide the basic tools needed.
Celebrity chefs provide their own knives because the manufacturer pays them to endorse those knives.
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Old 01-05-2014, 12:05 PM   #14
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I would have a knife roll and they would go with me when I leave. You would need to take them home for sharpening anyways.
I see. Makes perfect sense. Are there other items you would take home also?
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Old 01-05-2014, 12:13 PM   #15
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I see. Makes perfect sense. Are there other items you would take home also?

Not having worked as a chef I couldn't think of anything else... unless I had my own stock pot there...
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Old 01-05-2014, 12:18 PM   #16
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I used to take my own knives to work but after a while, it became extra work and worry. If your kitchen has a service that provides sharp knives weekly, you may find it less hassle to use them. They can get banged up pretty good when you use them 40 times a day. Knives get dropped on the hard tile floor in kitchens several times a day. The heat and strong detergent from the commercial dishwasher can really screw up the handles, also. Keeping them sharp is also an extra hassle.
If you do want, I would start with a shorter chef knife, like a 7 or 8 incher. The longer ones aren't as easy for fast chopping, dicing, etc. A smaller utility knife(5 or 6 inches) for slicing tomatoes, cucumbers, etc and other types of cutting will be another good one to have. That is a good start.
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:33 PM   #17
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I used to take my own knives to work but after a while, it became extra work and worry. If your kitchen has a service that provides sharp knives weekly, you may find it less hassle to use them. They can get banged up pretty good when you use them 40 times a day. Knives get dropped on the hard tile floor in kitchens several times a day. The heat and strong detergent from the commercial dishwasher can really screw up the handles, also. Keeping them sharp is also an extra hassle.
If you do want, I would start with a shorter chef knife, like a 7 or 8 incher. The longer ones aren't as easy for fast chopping, dicing, etc. A smaller utility knife(5 or 6 inches) for slicing tomatoes, cucumbers, etc and other types of cutting will be another good one to have. That is a good start.
You put your chefs knife in the dishwasher?
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:45 PM   #18
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You put your chefs knife in the dishwasher?
I rarely have, but I have seen many wooden handled knives get ruined because of it. Like I said, I don't bring my knives any more. The plastic handled ones go in the dishwashers all of the time. Happens in every restaurant I have ever worked in. For health and safety reasons they have to be washed and disinfected like every other thing in the kitchen. Washing them by hand is not an option in some places. Usually the dishwasher will probably not do it, or tell you to do it yourself. If I had an employee that spent too much time fussing over knives I would tell them to leave them at home. Use the plastic handled ones like every body else. Just put the dirty one in the dishwasher and get another one. Move it. You are here to produce. Not coddle your knives....
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Old 01-07-2014, 01:36 PM   #19
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Celebrity chefs provide their own knives because the manufacturer pays them to endorse those knives.
Don't think I used the word "celebrity" in my post. If I did, could you point it out to me? I don't think Pepin, Besh, Keller etc. are endorsing any knives on their shows, nor do I recall them even mentioning the brand of knife(s) they use.
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Old 01-07-2014, 01:45 PM   #20
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I rarely have, but I have seen many wooden handled knives get ruined because of it. Like I said, I don't bring my knives any more. The plastic handled ones go in the dishwashers all of the time. Happens in every restaurant I have ever worked in. For health and safety reasons they have to be washed and disinfected like every other thing in the kitchen. Washing them by hand is not an option in some places. Usually the dishwasher will probably not do it, or tell you to do it yourself. If I had an employee that spent too much time fussing over knives I would tell them to leave them at home. Use the plastic handled ones like every body else. Just put the dirty one in the dishwasher and get another one. Move it. You are here to produce. Not coddle your knives....
All my knives have plastic handles. I guess I have been wrong in thinking they should never go into the dishwasher?
I wash mine with hot soapy water, dry and return them to their block when I am finished with them.
All my knives are J.A. Henckels.
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