Start set of knives?

  1. What is a good brand for a starter set of cutlery? Even though I generally would rather wait to buy something higher quality, we're hit with so many expenses right now of furnishing a new place that I really can't see us spending $600-800 on a nice set of knives right now. We'll probably just wait and register for those anyway, or treat ourselves to them maybe in a year... so I really just need something decent to tide us over? Any suggestions?
  2. Henkels.
  3. Henkels are great knives...As are WMF.
  4. I absolutely love the "Zwilling" knives from Germany. IMO they're one of the best! They do nice sets as well.
  5. Frankly, you don't need many knives, I think one good chef's knife, a paring knife, and a slicer are enough for the average cook. Almost all of my knives are Wustoff Classic, and I built my collection slowly over time. I have put knives on my holiday wish lists for the past few years, I now have every knife I need. :yes:
  6. Global knives are the BEST!!

    I have about 4 of them and seriously, they are totally worth the money.
  7. Zwilling = JA Henckels :smile:
  8. The problem with both Henckels & Global, which were mentioned, is that they'll still cost us hundreds of dollars for a set. We just can't spend that right now. Maybe $150 max...?? Don't know if that is possible? They don't need to last a lifetime, just a couple years... Maybe we'll just start off like you did, Pidgeon, and start off with one or two and then build as we can add to a nicer set and just buy the block to store them in, even though it will be sad and mostly empty! I know we won't really need too many, so maybe that is the best option until we splurge on a full set, or just build our full set gradually over time.
  9. Henkels has a good started set for less than 150 comes with two kinves that are all you'll need for pretty much everything. They'll last forever.
  10. I agree with the others re brand names. I have Henkels.

    I purchased my knives and pricier kitchen tools (KitchenAid, Cuisinart, etc) using Macy's gift certificates.

    My relatives like my cooking, so they were happy to contribute to the cause. They would give me small gift cards to Macy's for bday, holidays. $10 - whatever amount they thought appropriate. I would combine cards for purchases. They all knew I was doing this and enjoyed contributing to The Kitchen Collection.

    If you register for knives, don't register for a set. Register for individual knives so people can afford to help you build a set.
  11. I have Henkels "professional S" knives. I've been building up my knife collection over the last several years. I don't buy as a set - I go a la carte. Might be more expensive in the long run, but I really don't like being 'forced' to buy a set of knives without me getting to choose them individually.
  12. Henkels are great but beware because they also sell some very LOW end lines.. i think they are called like Henkles eversharp or something.

    Go forged (as opposed to 'stamped') -- you can definitely find an affordable basic forged set. I believe bed bath and beyond sells a forged cuisinart set for aroun $99 and you can use the 20% coupons they mail out.
    If you know you'll be registering for some better knives, I can't think of a better set.
  13. I started out with a knife block, but I bought magnetic knife rack and I really prefer it. The less stuff on the counter the better for me. I didn't have a lot of horizontal wall space, so I hung it vertically and it works just fine. I keep all of my knives (except for my steak knives) on it.
  14. If you don't mind knives that don't match, just buy a knife block and buy the best knife you can in each size. The most important one is the 8-inch chef's knife so spend as much as you're able to get a good one that feels comfortable in your hand.

    The Cooks Illustrated site has done a lot of testing and here are a few results for inexpensive sets and inexpensive Chef's knives but you may have to register and pay to read them:

    They don't really recommend any knife sets. Here are their chefs knife recommendations:

    Do you need to fork over $100 for a good knife? Not even close. The Forschner Victorinox, which cost just $25, was the clear winner in these trials, and it rivals the best of the pricey knives in our test kitchen.

    Highly Recommended
    Forschner Victorinox Fibrox Chef’s Knife

    Comments: One tester summed it up: “Premium-quality knife at a bargain price.” Knives costing four times as much would be hard pressed to match its performance. The blade is curved and sharp; the handle comfortable. Overall, “sturdy” and “well balanced.”

    Wüsthof Gourmet Cook’s Knife

    Comments: Best suited for cooks with smaller hands. Testers with large hands complained that their knuckles hit the board before the blade did. The spine of the knife was thought to be “unnecessarily sharp,” but this knife performed well in all tests.

    MAC Chef Series Chef’s Knife

    Comments: This “ultra-light” knife is also “ultra-sharp,” although the “skinny” handle doesn’t fill a palm very well and the thin blade is too flexible to chop up squash or chicken bones. If you use a cleaver for those tasks, this knife could be a “nimble” addition to your collection.

    Recommended with Reservations
    J. A. Henckels Twin Signature Chef’s Knife

    Comments: Described as hefty but bulky, this knife also has a contoured handle that can get slippery and “didn’t feel comfortable” in all testers’ hands. The blade borders on being “too flat.”

    Not Recommended
    Calphalon Contemporary Cutlery Chef’s Knife

    Comments: A dead ringer for expensive German knives, but the thick blade on this knife is heavy enough to tax even the strongest cook. “Feels more like an ax” than a kitchen knife.

    Oxo Good Grips Chef’s Knife

    Comments: A delicate knife not suited for even the most delicate tasks. The blade bowed and twisted even when used to chop parsley and it bent permanently when put strenuous jobs such as splitting squash.

    J. A. Henckels International Fine Edge Pro Chef’s Knife

    Comments: We found nothing to like about the cheapest knife of the bunch. This “overgrown paring knife” left absolutely no room for knuckles. The perfectly flat blade and shiny, slick handle make this contender a shoe-in for the junk drawer.

    Farberware Pro Forged Chef’s Knife

    Comments: Feels unfinished, and the rough seams between the blade and handle are uncomfortable. Forget slicing--we could only “bruise” onions.

    Chicago Walnut Tradition Chef’s Knife

    Comments: “Shaggy,” wooden handle needs some sanding. Dull knives bruise vegetables; this one doesn’t even scratch the surface. One tester realized, “this is why folks cut themselves.”
  15. Wow what a great review from Hyacinth!!!

    Knives...I have a set now that cost me dearly (over 1k) however, I would not part with them! But they were not our first set of knives. And that first set got us through, however, I do not remember the maker or what they cost. I would suggest checking into William and Sonoma or Viking (the appliance maker) they have a Kitchen store and sell items to live by. I do not what they may cost but you could buy the knives without a block and pick one of those up along they way... Good Luck.