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Old 07-18-2008, 01:51 PM   #1
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Sabatier - ****Elephant Chef Knife

Any opinions on Sabatier Thiers-Issard ****Elephant 10" chef knife? So far i ve been using German/German Style knives and am used to the "rocking" style of cutting. Does the French shape of the blade affect the style of cutting?
I do have some sentimental reasons to consider Sabatier and this is a case of wanting it rather than needing it, however i do want to be able to use it on everyday bases. Also I am a home cook and my purely "cutting" needs are rather small - i ussually prepare food for 2 to 8 people at the most. Please share your experiences with this brand and can u recommend certain internet vendors (not sure if u can do this on DC)?
Thank you.

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Old 07-18-2008, 04:49 PM   #2
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NOTE: for those who are wondering ... the **** is not a word censor gotcha'. Thiers-Issard have been hand-crafting knives in Thiers, France, under the Sabatier brand with the **** Elephant logo.
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Old 07-28-2008, 01:41 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chessplayer View Post
Any opinions on Sabatier Thiers-Issard ****Elephant 10" chef knife? So far i ve been using German/German Style knives and am used to the "rocking" style of cutting. Does the French shape of the blade affect the style of cutting?
I do have some sentimental reasons to consider Sabatier and this is a case of wanting it rather than needing it, however i do want to be able to use it on everyday bases. Also I am a home cook and my purely "cutting" needs are rather small - i ussually prepare food for 2 to 8 people at the most. Please share your experiences with this brand and can u recommend certain internet vendors (not sure if u can do this on DC)?
Thank you.
Without knowing your sentimental reasons I can tell you that you're looking at way too much knife for "small" cutting requirements. First of all, French an Japanese profile knives don't "rock" nearly as well as their German counterparts. In my opinion, rocking is overrated and all too touted by television cooking shows. You don't need to rock to get the job done, see and .

For perspective, the knife on the left end is a Murray Carter Nakiri with a length of 6 sun (7 1/8") and the knife second from the right is a fifty year old TI Sabatier 4 star elephant measuring just under 11".

Third from the left is a Takeda 240mm (9.4") Gyuto and this is as big as I like for home cooking use.



These three are all old Sab 4 stars. The one in the middle is 9" and that's just about perfect.






If your sentimentality is for TI Sabs, the Importer is Sabatier Kitchen Knives at The Best Things. Their prices are good but check the return policy as my experience with these new Sabs shows a lack of QC over in Thiers, the usual problem being bent or misaligned blades.
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:26 PM   #4
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Thanks Buzzard767. Most informative indeed. I think I am going to fork $110 pretty soon on the 10". However you mentioning QC issues did make me come up with one more question. Are there any Sabatier knifes made by other factories that you consider better? I have heard about Sabatier Diamant and I have seen some with a "grape" logo on the handle in most of Anne Villan's books. Any opinions?
Or those videos on YouTube are most impressive...Makes me wonder about cleavers... I better not go there - this world of cutlery seems to be very addictive, make u wanna buy stuff all the time...
The pictures are very nice too. Is the magnetic strip covered with wood? Certainly looks most impressive. Thank you.
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Old 07-30-2008, 09:40 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by chessplayer View Post
Thanks Buzzard767. Most informative indeed. I think I am going to fork $110 pretty soon on the 10". However you mentioning QC issues did make me come up with one more question. Are there any Sabatier knifes made by other factories that you consider better? I have heard about Sabatier Diamant and I have seen some with a "grape" logo on the handle in most of Anne Villan's books. Any opinions?
Or those videos on YouTube are most impressive...Makes me wonder about cleavers... I better not go there - this world of cutlery seems to be very addictive, make u wanna buy stuff all the time...
The pictures are very nice too. Is the magnetic strip covered with wood? Certainly looks most impressive. Thank you.
Thiers-Issard is one of the original Sabatier companies and I know of no ther company making a knife under the "Sabatier" name that produces a better knife. Read this little blurb I wrote last year to promote some sales.

I would advise against the nogent handled series as this is the line in which I found some alignment problems.

You will probably get a lot more satisfaction from the carbon blades as opposed to stainless steel. Carbon can be made much more sharp.

Buzz
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Old 08-29-2008, 05:28 PM   #6
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Buzz and Chessplayer:
I'm slowly joining the ranks of the knife-aholics on this forum.

I recently purchased the 10" Thiers-Issard carbon steel chef knife from "The Best Things," as you two have been discussing. The version I selected is the french pattern chef with a Red Stamina (simulated rosewood) handle. See attached pic that I took.

Sure enough, the blade has a slight alignment issue. I spoke to the owner of The Best Things on the phone for awhile about it yesterday, and he mentioned the fact that ALL of the Thiers-Issard **** Elephant Sabatier knives have slight alignment issues, and that he has been back-and-forth with the suppliers regarding this many times, over and over again.

As he related, the french suppliers refer to this misalignment issue as a "feature" of handmade knives ---(as opposed to a "defect,") ---a choice of words that I actually find quite amusing. I've decided to keep the knife, and enjoy using it despite the minor curve in the blade; it's definitely there, but not completely unacceptable to me.

Maybe I'll feel differently if I accidentally give myself an involutary manicure...!
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Old 08-29-2008, 05:32 PM   #7
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Oops, here's the image from my previous post...
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Old 08-29-2008, 06:24 PM   #8
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As he related, the french suppliers refer to this misalignment issue as a "feature" of handmade knives ---(as opposed to a "defect,") ---a choice of words that I actually find quite amusing. I've decided to keep the knife, and enjoy using it despite the minor curve in the blade; it's definitely there, but not completely unacceptable to me.
That's just the French covering their butts. Is the problem one of the blade alignment relative to the handle or is the blade itself curved (bent) forward of the bolster? If the problem is misalignment it is a matter of how much you will personally tolerate. I have a few custom handmade knives with slight alignment problems but that doesn't bother me. If the blade itself is not straight it will be impossible to sharpen properly. The good news is that it can be straightened.
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Old 08-29-2008, 06:42 PM   #9
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Unless this knife goes by another name here in the Wisconsin area, I have never seen or sharpened this brand.

Buzz, do I know it as something else?
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Old 08-29-2008, 07:12 PM   #10
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Buzz:
The blade itself is curved (bent) forward of the bolster.

I just locked the blade into a little Lansky sharpener, and set up my camera/tripod to photograph the blade along the curvature... I hope this illustrates it well, although I think the image appears exaggerated due to the angle of perspective that I shot this. See attached images.

How can it be straightened?
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