Style of Knife
The style of knife you buy depends largely on what you’re looking to do with it and what you are preparing. Whether you’re preparing sushi or peeling vegetables, the process of chopping and slicing is very different and a different knife will be required.
Despite having the word for cow in the name (gyu), the gyuto knife is the most versatile and useful knife for your kitchen, whether you’re preparing beef, fish, or vegetables. For beginners or connoisseurs alike, the gyuto makes the ideal starter knife. Known as a classic Japanese kitchen knife, it is the combination of several Western and Japanese style blades, and be used to slice vegetables, fish and meat. Its blade is particularly long, and the lightweight construction allows for agile push chopping.
A larger knife generally means you can perform more work with it, however, your workspace should also then need to accommodate a larger knife. The knife you purchase should not be longer than your cutting board is wide.
That being said, you don’t want your knife to be too small, or too large to perform everyday tasks. A general purpose knife for most like a Santoku of 160-180mm is, therefore, a great place to start. Once your Santoku becomes either too large or too small, it’s time to expand! Look for petty knives around 100mm for smaller delicate tasks, and Gyuto’s up to 240-300mm for larger tasks like carving meats, but beware of bones!
What's the difference between a Japanese Knife and German Knife?
Those who have a little knowledge of kitchen knives know that Japanese knives are famous for their unique sharpness. In comparison, German knives are more durable but slightly less sharp, which has a lot to do with their material hardness.
The hardness of stainless steel is assessed by Rockwell hardness C scale (HRC), the higher the value is, the greater the hardness is. German kitchen knives such as Zwilling, WMF, etc. mostly use 1.4116 or X50CRMOV15, and the hardness value is between 54-57; while the VG-10 hardness value commonly used in Japanese kitchen knives is 60+, higher-end(expensesive) choice are Tamahaganei steel and powder steel the HRC can be up to 62.
In addition to the hardness of the material, the blade angle also affects the sharpness of a knife. The blade angle of the German knife is generally 20-22 °; the Japanese knife is harder, so the blade is very small and will not curl, and the blade angle is smaller, between 10-16. The Japanese believe that the smaller the blade angle is, the smaller the cutting path of the knife is and the less damage to the food.
The design of both knives is influenced by their culture. Japanese people love sashimi and value the taste and appearance of food. They have higher requirements for knives. Different ingredients requires different knives, and the blade body is also lighter and thinner which make iteasy to be controlled.
In a nut shell, Japanese Knives are better at fine cutting, it can easily cut meat slices as thin as paper and cut vegetables into hair strands,and cut bread without chipping ... Handling fluffy ingredients such as meat, fish, and vegetables, nothing is more perfect than a Japanese knife.
Like cars and cameras, most of the top products in the world of kitchen knives come from Germany and Japan.In terms of price, German knives and Japanese knives have entry knives and high-end knives, ranging from $60 to $1200.In most cases, the price of Japanese kitchen knives is much cheaper than the same level of German kitchen knives.