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Old 07-01-2009, 10:33 AM   #21
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First let me say I have had professional culinary training and have had the pleasure of working with some of the finest chefs in the world for the last 40+ years. A chefs cutlery is only second to ones family. My first choice will always be my 40 year old Carbon steel (CS) Henkel's. My wife on the other hand, now that's a different story she has over a twenty plus piece selection of the finest cutlery in the world, but she will go for the pretty GW's every time and she just loves them. The GW's are very well balanced and have a nice weight to them and if you know how to hone and maintain a edge there isn't a issues in quality for the average user. But for me I will just have to keep using my old black Henkel's.
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Old 07-07-2009, 09:39 AM   #22
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Internet scam

I have used a GW 10" chef knife and indeed it is a work of art. Good balance, pretty and functional. However it is not more than a hair better than a Henckels or any other knife in this market as far as sharpness is concerned. I'd say passable at best. The real scam is when you want to buy one. Shipping is a whopping $70, yes, I am not joking. Even if you try purchasing from another site offering "free" shipping, it's only good for the lower 48. Otherwise be prepared for a shock. Shipping costs more then the freaking knife!
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Old 08-10-2009, 04:43 AM   #23
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GW 10" Chef's Knife

I purchased the Gunter Wilhelm 10" Chef's knife in December, 2008. I have been using a decent quality 8" stamped chef's knife for the last fifteen years and decided it was time to buy my first quality forged chef's knife. My target price was $100 and I had a hard cap of $125. GW's $65 price tag caught my eye.

I spent a great deal of time researching my purchase and compared the blade with the Henckels Classic, Shun Classic, Victorinox and Messermeister 10" models. GW mentions Henckles and Wusthof numerous times on their website so clearly they consider these brands their target competitors. The Wustoff was out of my price range. I eliminated the Henckels because the bolster extended the the heel of the blade, a feature (among many) I hated on a Forged Chicago Cutlery 8" knife I'd previously acquired. I eliminated the Shun because I didn't like the rounded handle. This left the Victorinox, GW and Messermeister knives. All appeared to be using a similar quality high carbon stainless steel. The GW was the front runner because of the price and attractive styling of the blade. I did have some concerns however and called GW's toll free number on a Saturday afternoon to see how they responded. The weekend answering service didn't know much but took my number and assured me someone would call me back on Monday. Paul Hellman, the company's founder, called be back less than 20 minutes later. I told Paul I was concerned about the place of manufacture and design of the bolster. He assured me that the blades were forged in Germany and only finished in China. Paul also told me that the blade was sharp all the way to the heel and the bolster was designed so the blade could be run across a sharpening steel from tip to heel without interference from the bolster. I thought about it for a few days and placed the order.

I have now used the knife daily for 8 months for everything from chopping vegetables and slicing meat to breaking down chicken, pork and beef purchased in bulk. I have the following observations:

1) The blade is very sharp from the factory, retains its edge quite well and is refreshed with just a few strokes across my sharpening steel. I use this knife when slicing tomatoes. It cuts through the skin cleanly with no pressure beyond the weight of the blade. Although I have run the blade over my finishing stone a couple of times it really has not needed to be sharpened yet.

2) The knife is well balanced and fits my large hand nicely. There is plenty of knuckle clearance when chopping unless I am seriously ham-fisting the handle.

3) Finally a criticism. The most common use of the chefs knife for me is dicing onions and mincing garlic. I like to remove the skins and papers by pinching them between my thumb and the back corner of the blade and pulling them off. The way the bolster tapers down from the handle to the heel of the blade makes it much more difficult than a knife with a truly bolsterless heel. I often put up with this inconvenience because I don't want to use two knives and this knife is much better at chopping, dicing and mincing that my other two chfs knives but this feature is quite frustrating. I have considered taking my Dremel to the bolster but that just seems wrong.

Verdict: Very good quality knife at a great price. Beautiful and well balanced I prefer it to my Fathers comparable Henckels piece. However, if your onion chopping technique is similar to mine, I suggest you pony up the extra $40 or so for a comparable 10" chefs knife with a truly bolsterless heel.

P.S. Both Paul and the lady managing his warehouse were courteous and responsive to my inquiries. Excellent customer service.

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Old 08-10-2009, 07:40 AM   #24
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I dunno about their knives but they seem to have a helluva marketing department.
If we're not supposed to eat animals, then how come they're made out of meat?
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:24 PM   #25
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WHAT A CROCK! I quote from Sunday Peasant Cooking: " He assured me that the blades were forged in Germany and only finished in China. "

TOTAL LIE. Totally untrue. Are you joking? He told me the same line. He told me this great heartwarming story that was a total fairy tale, there wasn't even a Gunter Wilhelm and after a bit of digging, I called this guy Paul back and he did laugh and say Ok, it was a marketing ploy, but he swore up and down everything else was on the up and up. I returned my set of knives when I could find no record anywhere of this company ever having ties with Germany, no one in Germany associated with the knife industry and steel ever heard of them. They ship the steel from Germany to be assembled into a knife in China? LIE... that is Chinese Steel, and up until just recently, they were not forged steel blades as they have stamped on their product for the last 5 years. Wish I could remember the guy who did his own little test on 10 popular knives, but the results were definitive, and probably the reason why this guy Paul was finally forced to use actual forged steel just this past year. Oh yeah, one of my friends, after six months and 5 replacements of an 8 inch chef knife that either warped, cracked, fell apart or rusted out, the last free replacement knife was sent with the MADE IN CHINA sticker still on it, and the guy tries to tell him it was mistakenly stuck on, transfered onto the plastic by the free knife sharpener they enclosed to mollify him and keep him sending a complaint to his credit card company. Give me a break.... glad to see he is now at least able to admit that the knives are made in China, but that ain't German Steel and like I said, until this year, it wasn't forged.
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Old 11-04-2009, 09:19 PM   #26
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The GW stuff seems to be low class stuff.
Things change. All I know is that, for a reasonable balance betwen price and quality, I'm very satisfied with the Goldhamster that I purchased in Germany some 25 years ago. Over time I've also learned to appreciate the Othello Wingen knives I bought at a PX in Italy 45 years ago(no longer in business) and my 30+ some year old Sabatier, Chicago Cutlery and Dexters ain't too shabby either. My opinion of the forgoing knives is based on comparing them to more recent (last 3 years) purchases of several Shun knives and some Spydercos. Spydercos' S30V steel is about the best I've encountered but not to my knowledge available in production cook's knives. With the exception of the S30V, Shun's stuff (as of a year or two ago) were not that much more impressive than most of my older knives.

My wife's favorite is an ATS34 steel AG Russell Hocho. Russell's current models are VG10 steel. My experience with both ATS34 and VG10 is that they are somewhat more prone to staining than most of my other ss knives.

Like I said things change, ie stuff that's good one year may not be so good or available later. For example I bought a Bodum 5 liter water kettle some 4 or 5 years ago that seems to be no longer available.
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Old 11-21-2009, 02:17 PM   #27
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I bought two GW chef's knives (an 8" and a 10") secondhand from an ebay auction. These are the first decent knives I've owned and I'm very happy with them. The best knife I had previously owned was a stamped "Professional Chef's Knife" purchased from a Gordon's Food Service store. I bought the GW's partly because the price would allow me to make another purchase if I was unhappy with them (I don't usually buy kitchen items secondhand). I use the knives quite a bit and they have held their edge very well. I especially like the fit and balance of the knives in my hand.
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Old 11-21-2009, 02:34 PM   #28
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It's great when you come across a deal that works out.

There is always going to be a better knife and you could drive yourself crazy wondering about it. Enjoy your knife and keep it sharp.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 11-29-2009, 06:25 PM   #29
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Knives for a beginner?

I got laid off from my job (banking), and my goal during my time off is to learn to cook. I just bought these knives, because I couldn't afford the Cutco ones that were $1000. I got them at Costco so I didn't have to pay shipping. For a VERY beginner, how are they? Everyone on this site seems pretty advanced... Thank you!
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Old 11-29-2009, 06:41 PM   #30
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Any knife will disassemble food. I purposely did not say cut because poor blades do not so much cut as they do rip, shred, tear, etc. If you are a very beginner as you label yourself then take one thing at a time, learn that skill, then move to the next. Without knowing a thing about these knives personally, I will tell you that for now they will be just fine for you. As you become more experience you may decide you want to upgrade and by then you will know more about what you are looking for.

Welcome to the site, and don't be intimidated. We have members who are professional chefs all the way down to people who don't know how to boil water. All are welcome here and all have something to contribute.
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Old 11-30-2009, 07:17 AM   #31
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They were selling this weekend at Costco
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:08 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by sarahj64 View Post
I got laid off from my job (banking), and my goal during my time off is to learn to cook. I just bought these knives, because I couldn't afford the Cutco ones that were $1000. I got them at Costco so I didn't have to pay shipping. For a VERY beginner, how are they? Everyone on this site seems pretty advanced... Thank you!

If you've never had "good" knives before, you'll enjoy these. Keep them sharp and they'll last a long time.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:39 AM   #33
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Smile a topic of consternation

I was looking for some reviews on GW knives as well when I hit on this thread. I have been trying to decide whether or not to be disappointed in my purchase of the GW 250 set. I bought it supposedly "new" and unopened off of eBay for an exceptionally good price, even better than what it's on sale for on the GW site. I felt like I was taking a chance, but I am pretty darn tired of my Ronco set and single Rachel Ray knife.

I was initially disappointed by some quality flaws on the GWs as soon as I opened the box. Rough spots on the metal near the "balance point" where your thumb and forefinger grasp the handle, a broken tip on the bread slicer and a big ding on the cutting edge of the santoku and a weird wavy-ness from the santoku's tapering bolster down to the heel. I managed to smooth the ding out somewhat by honing but it was still there. So, I wrote GW via e-mail. A man claiming to be Paul Hellman wrote back politely and said all would be taken care of and if I would kindly submit it via the warranty process on their website and call in this Monday. So I did. I talked to someone named Jim though Hellman told me to ask for Nick. Long story short, Nick called me back and said my warranty submission was processed and I will receive the knives in about a week. So I am waiting for them now.

Okay, so it's like this. I have champagne tastes on a soda water budget. I would love to get all picky and scientific about metal combinations and hair splitting techniques, but it doesn't get dinner made. I am disappointed in their obvious manufacturing flaws. I have my own high doubts as to where GW knives are made - because I have yet to come across a truly German made product that was less than excellent. (I'm sure there is always the exception). I am SO glad I did not pay more than I did for the set (I got 6 steak knives included as well).

On the up side however. Since my circumstance is not that of a purist I am more than willing to say these should make a fine set of daily use knives with proper care. If you don't pay too much for them, by all means get them. Enjoy them. They make nice eye candy for your counter top. They seem to slice and dice and chop and do all the usual things with ease - especially compared to my previous knives. A big caveat is that the 10 inch chef's is quite a bit too big for my hand's comfort and it's rather heavy and could get tedious for me to use. The Pakka wood handles are also a little harsh-edged and could do with a hint of softening, but perhaps that will come with repeated use.

As a slight aside - I bought an 8 inch Hammer Stahl chef's knife from a local fair, which looks almost exactly like GWs and claims exactly the same things including lifetime warranty..pakka wood etc. Is HS just a knock off of GW or are they somehow related? Incidentally..HS is a wee bit nicer looking because of the way they make the tang curved up the side of the handle like a long "S".

Hope this helps anyone who is looking into GWs or Hammer Stahls for that matter. P.S. Keep your hand and the knife handle dry..they get slippery.
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Old 07-24-2012, 04:18 PM   #34
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Funny you mention Hammer Stahl. I was at the State fair just the other day and I walked by a knife the Hammer Stahl booth and said, "looks just like Gunter W. Knives". The guy selling them about came unhinged saying bad things about GW, and how did I know about them...... He seemed like he was guilty about something.
Bottom line>>>> same gig. Made in China, Guy claims made in Germany and finished in China. BS. No country of orig on blades. All of my home and professional knives have Country of O. IN fact, the Hammer Stahl web site itself says blanks make in Germany and sent to China. Even at that, the guy selling them denied it. I showed him the web site on my phone. He said that the web was wrong. Ok, what ever.
GW is having a road show at my local costco, what's really strange is that the knives are extremely identical, except for the curved metal on the handle, even the packaging looks the same. I really checked them out, at both locations and they really feel "eerily identical". Maybe it's me. Also, the claims of great service and lifetime guarintee is really quite similar.
I don't like being mislead.
You know, if I cut down an Oak tree in Washington state and send the wood to china and they manufacture me an Oak Table and hutch, then were was it made? This is what's going on here with GW and HS knives. They should be proud to put Made In China on their knives, that is if if they were indeed proud of their craftshmanship, honing, metal, finishing, shaprening, etc. THis is what really makes me wonder. Don't sell me a Chineese knife telling me that it's great German Quality and craftsmanship at "rock bottom, great deal, better quaility than all of the other "high end knives". That's what really gets me. If I were to get the set at 1/3 the cost, then I'd say that bang for buck you did well. Not here though.
BTW, these knives aren't inexpensive. They are as much as some of the Henkels and Wust that I have purchased over the years (on sale of course).
They may be decent enough knives, not for the price, in my opinion, but they will work. I don't like the smoke and mirrors. I don't like being "LIED TO, BY OMISSION OF THE TRUTH".
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Old 12-21-2012, 05:31 AM   #35
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Wow, now I am totally confused. I have 3 beautiful Wustofs that my wife got me while vacationing in Germany. But, the prices are fairly high. The GW's are amazingly inexpensive. I just bought a GW boning knife yesterday to give it a chance...I must say that I was impressed, but I am one of those folks that doesn't want to have to replace my equipment every few years. I do use my equipment more than most people and really would like to locate the best value. Perhaps staying with my Wustofs and adding to my collection is the best idea...HELP?
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:05 PM   #36
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I know, I'm the odd one out here. But I still love the chef's knife that my DW purchased for me back in 2003. Here is a link - Chroma Knives - Chroma Cutlery, Chroma Knife Sets & Kitchen Knives designed by FA Porsche Knives | cutleryandmore.com

I have the 10" chef's knife, and love it. I purchased the same knife for my son, who is a professional cook. It's his most prized knife, and he has had knives of several brands. He also has the santoku and loves it as well. I would love to own the salmon slicing, and the carving knives too. But money is tight right now, and I couldn't justify the purchase, especially when I can use my Chef's knife to do almost any cutting chore in my kitchen. Whenever I go anywhere that I have to cook, my Chef's knife goes with me. The knife shape, ergonomics, and quality just work. The blade holds its edge well, and has only needed to be sharpened once in nine years. I do run it across my sharpening steel before and after every use. But that's honing, not sharpening.

Just another option for anyone looking for good knives.

Seeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:12 AM   #37
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I purchased a GW knife at a cooking convention. I believe it was called the Metro Cooking Show. I got a great deal because the salesman had not sold any that day. I'm pretty sure I paid $40 for a 10" chef's knife, and he threw in an "Asian cleaver" for free. I used the chef's knife in one of my food prep classes the other day, and I must say that it felt a bit large and clunky for everyday chopping of vegetables such as onions and carrots, etc. I'm not sure, but maybe an 8" would feel better. I actually prefer my Dexter-Russell, which I bought specifically for culinary school, or the 8" chef's knife out of my Henkel set at home. I can say that the GWs look impressive.
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:55 PM   #38
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I've had my Gunter Wilhelm knives for about 8 years now. I have the 11 piece set, but the old set without the Santoku and a straight instead of off-set bread knife. I didn't get the steak knives becuase I already had two sets of steak knives.

I love my Gunters and would never give them up. I sharpen them every 6 months with the Eversharp electric knife sharpener that they recommended when I purchased them and they hold an edge very well. I had two problems with them; a discoloration on the blade of the paring knife and a loose rivet in the handle of the 8-inch chef's knife and they replaced both without argument. I've been tempted to buy more, but the block is full so I have no place to keep them.
The older I get, the harder it is to tolerate STUPID!
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:48 AM   #39
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I have owned a set of ''Wusthof'' Knives for 20 years. They are very well balanced and hold a good edge. Although they need to be sharpened quite frequently, I find these do the trick for me in a commercial setting. When I us a knife for many hours a day how it feels In my hand is important to me, and how tiring it is. Having traveled to catering events and using some ''House knives'' I fond ''Chicago'' and ''Global'' work just fine, for lower end knives. The best and least tiring was a Japanese Santoku with no brand name except ''Cosmic Steel'' Although most German brands are quite the same, this knife was superior to me. If I purchase a new set I will definitely buy these type of knives.
''Good cooking is when things taste of what they are''
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