Notes On Materials And Construction
If youve spent more than a few minutes researching knives, youve likely run into a bewildering fog of jargon and technical specifications. Heres a quick guide, which applies to steak knives, chefs knives, and everything in between:
The phrase high-carbon steel is basically marketing hype: every steel alloy used to make knives is high-carbon. You can ignore the phrase it if its used, and you neednt worry if its not. Do note, however, that if a knife is listed only as high-carbon or carbon steel, it will easily rust. To be sure your knife is rust-resistant, make sure it is also listed as stainless.
Stainless steel is steel alloyed with at least 12 percent, and usually 14 to 18 percent, chromium. The chromium forms a dense layer on any exposed surface which rapidly oxidizes, preventing oxidation of the steel underneath. There are multiple types of stainless steel, some more corrosion-resistant than others all those used on our recommended knives are high-performing: extremely corrosion-resistant, capable of taking and holding a sharp edge and easy to re-sharpen.
There are thousands of different steel alloysmixtures of iron, carbon, and any of 20 or more other elementseach designed for a different purpose. Knife alloys alone run into the dozens, and the names are alphabet soup: AEB-L, VG-10, 19C27, ZDP-189. My advice is: ignore them all, at least for steak knives. Whatever alloy a good manufacturer chooses will perform perfectly well.
Best For Entertaining: Dubost Laguiole Natura Steak Knives Set Of 6
These ornate steak knives look like an heirloom passed down from Grandmaand maybe they will be one day. They have a classic, old-school design, with a gracefully curved handle made of polished plastic that has a slightly swirly, pearlized finish. The set includes three each of the two handle colors: Chocolate and Fudge . Adorned with the French cutlery makers iconic bee on top of the bolster where the blade meets the handle, these knives have an eclectic look that will dress up any dinner table.
As for their performance, the knife blades have a unique construction of tiny serration interspersed with larger cutout hollows. The hollows prevent juicy steaks from clinging to the blade, and the tiny serration created less tearing and drag than some of the longer-toothed blades we tried. The knives are very lightweight and had decent balance, and the handles were comfortable to hold, with the curve fitting nicely into the pinky-finger end of the hand. However, these delicate, narrow knives might be difficult to use for someone with larger hands.
The French brand Dubost Laguiole has stood the test of time its 100 years old and is a leader in the plastic-handled cutlery category.
Buy It: $100 williams-sonoma.com
Also Great: Opinel No 125 Bon Appetit Set
Several testers diverged from the pack on steak knife aesthetics, preferring something with cleaner, modern lines instead of the traditional look. If that also describes you, the Opinel No. 125 Bon Appetit Set, which used to be called the South Spirit, is our recommendation. The Opinel blades are noticeably less sharp than the Messermeister and Wüsthof, but they still cut our tough test-steaks neatly and efficiently. The beautiful handles are made of olivewood, which, in addition to being pretty, is naturally water-resistant .
The Opinels underperform noticeably in one category: weight. At just 35 gramsbarely more than an ouncethey feel insubstantial in the hand. They also come in a simple cardboard case that wont last long in your silverware drawer youd want to store it somewhere less trafficked like a high shelf. But on looks and performance, theyre winners at the price. Lastly, if youre looking for something to brighten your table, Opinel makes a version of this knife set thats fitted with colored hornbeam-wood handles. You can also buy the knives open stock if you want to build your own set in different colors.
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How You Treat Your Kitchen Tools
If you’re investing in cookware, you should plan to take care of it to the best of your ability. That involves cleaning items properly, safe storage, and following the product’s specific care instructions. If you want to be extra careful, steer clear of the dishwasher even if the item brands itself as dishwasher safe which can result in product breakdown over time. Scratch-resistant cleaning pads are a smart choice, too.
Is Cutco Worth The Money
There is no denying that investing in Cutco knives is a significant investment, but it is also intended to be an investment that lasts a lifetime. The blades can be sharpened by the company for a few bucks or sharpened at home with one of the brands sharpeners. One of the most significant downsides to Cutco knives is that they are stamped and lack any bolster to protect your hand from the blade. Professional chefs tend to look elsewhere, but if you prefer American-made, Cutco is worth considering.
- check High-carbon stainless steel
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Budget Pick: Chicago Cutlerys Walnut Tradition Set
*At the time of publishing, the price was $30.
Chicago Cutlerys Walnut Tradition steak knife set is the best low-cost set out there. The knives are not perfect by any metric: the blade-edges are coarse and uneven at 60 grams/2 ounces, theyre a bit lighter than wed like and the fit-and-finish is indifferent. In fact, they appear just to be industrial-grade boning knives with steak knife handles slapped on. Put it this way: if the Messermeisters give you more than you pay for aesthetically, these give you exactly what you pay for, and not a penny more.
They work far better than the serrated blades you usually have to settle for at this price.
But theyre built to last and they work perfectly welland, more importantly, they work far better than the serrated blades you usually have to settle for at this price. Theyre a great choice for outfitting a crowd, taking along on country picnics, or while car camping. Not fancy, perfectly functional, and if you lose one, youll shed no tears.
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Best Cutco Knives Alternative My Suggestion
Cutco knives are really not for everyone and I can say that there are better alternatives that are either for the same price or even cheaper. If you really like Cutco than go for it, there is nothing wrong about their products except higher price tag, but if you are looking for the best deal and highest quality/price ratio I would go for Wüsthof Gourmet Twelve Piece Block Set.
This set contains 1/2 Paring Knife, 3 Spear Point Paring Knife, 4 1/2 Utility Knife, Four 4 1/2 Steak Knives, 8 Bread Knife, 8 Cooks Knife, 9 Steel, Come-Apart Kitchen Shears and a 13-Slot Block. Wüsthof is known brand for high quality knives that are not overpriced and if you will not do anything really stupid with them and you do not look for anything special, these will be the only knives you need for everyday use in your kitchen. You do not need to buy several different products, but you get all the basic knives for everyday use in your kitchen and this is of course much cheaper than buying them separately.
If you prefer American-made knives than I can absolutely recommend Rada Cutlery. Their knives are high quality for much lower price than Cutco. What I do not like much about Rada are the handles, but if you are not someone who has knife in hand for many hours every day, like chefs in restaurants do, than I think it will not be a problem for you.
Also Check: Towle Stainless Steel Steak Knives
How Does It Cut Steak
But lets talk about how effective it is at doing what its meant to do. For cutting steak, its really great thanks to the serration. A bonus point is earned for the fact that sharpening wont be needed with these Cutco knives. You may not be the type of person who would particularly enjoy the process of sharpening a blade, and in that case, this Cutco set is ideal. But otherwise, if you look forward to giving your knife a good run on the whetstone, we advise that you go for a smooth-bladed collection. While they can be impressively sharp, non-serrated knives require frequent maintenance over time, while sharpening serrated knives at home is difficult task.
Weve kind of brushed through the toughness and the warranty of the knife a minute ago, but its actually something that deserves a spotlight. Youll have to try it to understand the meaning of having a 440A blade. This is one of the best stainless-steel grades that you can have for a knife. Whats great about it is that it ensures a sustainable sharpness for the blades edge. Having one of these knives can mean that you wont have to buy another one for decades because of how it can stand the test of time.
Recommended Reading: Steak Eze Sams
Is Wusthof Worth The Money
All of Wusthof knives are of the best quality available on the market. The forged construction is more advanced than the stamped construction used by Cutco. Since the blades are forged, most of Wusthofs knives feature bolsters, which improve balance and safety. These are high-quality kitchen knives. If you are serious about cooking, are serious about learning to cook, Wusthof makes some of the best knives money can buy, all with beautiful lines.
- check Well balanced in hand
- check Bolsters add safety
- check Used by professionals
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The Buying Guide: Our Advice On How To Buy The Best Cutco Steak Knives Review
Before you invest your hard-earned money into a product, you should properly educate yourself about the available products and the best alternatives in the market. We have compiled the list of factors you should consider before buying a cutco steak knives review to make your task easier.
Like almost any product, before buying a cutco steak knives review, you should ask yourself these few questions:
These are just some of the questions that you need to seek the answer to when purchasing the product. It is essential to keep in mind that you may have further queries and questions, as you should.
These are just a few considerations that we consider absolutely crucial. You can find detailed answers to almost all of your questions by some internet research or even by trying out the product at the store.
Similarities Between Cutco And Wusthof
Cutco and Wusthof have been perfecting the craft of knife making for decades and share many similarities. The following are the most notable similarities:
Performance: Both companies produce high-performing knives that are durable and last a lifetime.
History: Both companies have stood the test of time. Wusthof has 200 years under its belt, and Cutco has been making knives for almost 75 years.
Ergonomic Handles: Both Cutco and Wusthof offer ergonomically-designed handles made from a variety of materials.
Sharpening: Both companies offer a mail-order sharpening program at a minimal cost.
Caring and Cleaning: Both companies recommend that consumers hand wash and dry their products to keep them in tip-top shape.
Customizable: You can personalize Cutco and Wusthof knives by engraving or monogramming the blades.
Price: Even though there are many different levels of Wusthof knives, on average, Cutco and Wusthof are priced similarly. Check their current prices on Amazon .
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Whats The Deal With Stamped And Forged Knives
Generally speaking, forged knives are superior to stamped knives.
Cutco knives are made using stamped steel which means theyre cheaper to produce.
Although theres nothing wrong with stamped knives, they dont always hold their edge as long as forged knives.
To put this in perspective, Henckels has mostly stamped knives and Wusthof is almost always made of forged steel.
That means that youll have to sharpen stamped knives sooner than forged knives.
Also, unlike other popular knife brands, Cutco doesnt offer a higher grade steel or premium knife set so anyone looking for higher-quality steel is out of luck.
Cutco Warranty: The Best In The Business
As Ive stated before, Cutcos warranty coverage is absolutely phenomenal. A simple search with your favorite search engine will return dozens of results from satisfied customers who have had their products replaced free of charge decades after the purchase date. In many cases, the damage caused to the Cutco products is 100% the fault of the consumer, and Cutco is perfectly happy to replace the products.
This is quite expensive for Cutco, of course, so it jacks up the price of each knife tremendously. More importantly, however, its also a major part of their advertising game. Each time they replace a knife, the happy customer shares the news with their friends. This means that Cutco is quite happy to help you with your goal of never buying another knife again.
The reverse is even truer: each time they DONT replace a knife, someone makes a big stink on social media and ruins the image that their company has very carefully cultivated for years. Since Cutcos warranty is such a big part of why people buy their knives, they work very hard to avoid letting this happen. This means that Cutco is incredibly likely to honor any and all warranty claims in this day and age.
The result, of course, is that you can trust Cutco products to an extent thats more-or-less unparalleled. If you buy a Cutco knife, a pair of shears, or a set of Cutco steak knives, youre guaranteeing that youll have those tools in your kitchen for a long, long time.
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Cutco Knives Review: Are They Worth It
Cutco has a fairly unique business model. Instead of relying on smart pricing, good advertising, and great web presence, it uses a direct marketing approach. Cutco hires many salespeople, mostly college students, to visit their friends and family members and demonstrate how good their knives are in-person. The power of these demonstrations is enough to drive sales, even with the high price-tag on Cutco knives.
Unfortunately, however, these demonstrations can be deceiving. I dont think that Cutco is for everyone, no matter how nice their knives might seem. While there are definitely some upsides to Cutco products, I dont think the cost of these knives is justified in many kitchens. This doesnt mean you shouldnt buy a set of Cutco knives! Instead, you should carefully weigh your options and figure out what you actually want to use your knives for, then get the best knife for that purpose.
Lets check out some of their knives so I can describe how this works.
What Cutco Customers Are Saying
Since Cutco knives were traditionally sold door-to-door, some chefs are quick to overlook this product however, Cutco customers are usually pleased with their knives. The blades tend to hold their sharpness, and since the company offers such a good warranty and free sharpening for the life of the knife, there seems to be little risk in purchasing these knives.
Although the average consumer may not be knowledgeable about knife production, experts say that Cutco knives are inferior because they are stamped instead of forged. Stamped knives are cut from a sheet of steel instead of being manufactured from a single piece of steel. Stamped knives are less costly to produce and are not as durable, sharp, and substantial-feeling as a forged knife.
Experts also question the quality of the 440A stainless steel that Cutco uses to manufacture its blades. Other knife companies that are at the same price point as Cutco use 440C steel. In general, 440A steel is usually used in cheaper knives.
Now that you know a bit more about Cutco, lets take a look at one of their biggest competitors, Wusthof.
Don’t Miss: Williams Sonoma Laguiole Steak Knives
Best Japanese Chef Knives
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Why You Should Trust Us
Ive been cooking for myself and for crowds since I left high school between that and various stints in construction and landscaping, Ive come to appreciate well-made, well-designed hand toolsincluding knives. And having wasted money on crummy, expensive knives more than once when I was younger, I have a particular regard for knives that truly justify their price .
For my own needs and as a journalist, Ive researched deeply into knife-making materials, knife design, and knife performance over the years Mark Richmond, owner of Chef Knives to Go, has been particularly helpful on several occasions. Our 2015 guide, researched and written by Wirecutter deputy editor Christine Cyr Clisset, produced a wealth of information also incorporated here. Christine gathered reviews from Americas Test Kitchen , Saveur, and Serious Eats she learned about knife styles and materials from Dexter Ewing of BLADE magazine and Howard Nourieli of Bowery Kitchen Supplies and she spoke to Rick Gresh, then the executive chef at David Burke’s Primehouse in Chicago for practical advice on steak knife performance and care.
Finally, weve now tested 15 different steak knives on 16 pounds of beef in two real-world test sessions, involving a dozen Wirecutter staffers and friends. If theres a question about steak knives, however obscure, weve asked it and found the answer.
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