Good knife brands are more than just a name on a box. If you pick the right one, you’re not just buying a knife – you’re joining a community, and you can get a tremendous amount of value from the brand. In this article we’ll explore what makes for good knife brands, and pick our favorite in the market.
- Should You Care About Finding a Good Knife Brand?
- Qualities to Look For in Good Knife Brands
- What Are Some Popular Knife Brands?
- Best Dalstrong Knife For You
- Frequently Asked Questions
1. Should You Care About Finding a Good Knife Brand?
“Oh, I don’t care about kitchen knife brands,” you say. “I just want the knife itself.”
I’ve heard that so many times. And then inevitably at some point further down the line, the knife brand becomes extremely important. Because those expensive Japanese knives you got are chipping and you need to get them replaced, but customer service isn’t responding. Or maybe you want to get more knives, but the brand you bought them from only sells one kind.
Whatever the case, you’ll soon find that a good knife brand is worth looking into. Not only will it provide post-sales support but it can also provide a good variety of products that complement the first knife you purchase from them. This is why buying knife sets is also a good idea – it creates cohesion to your knife collection that would be hard to find if you just shopped willy nilly.
Let’s talk about what it takes to be a good knife brand, as well as take a look at some of the leading knife brands in the business currently.
2. Qualities to Look For in Good Knife Brands
When it comes to finding a good knife brand, there are certain important qualities you should look for. Let’s take a look at some of the most important ones.
The first quality you should be looking out for is good construction. A well-made knife will be built to last and withstand regular use. This means that not only does the design of the knife itself need to accommodate extended use, but it needs to be made of quality materials as well. A knife with a sharp blade that's prefectly balanced, with precision cuts, and with a good quality type of steel and edge retention is a must. If a knife maker uses cheap materials to build their knives, it’s probably a good indicator that they take a lax attitude towards quality assurance.
Second, look for a brand that offers a variety of blade sizes and styles to suit your needs. Chances are, you’re not going to stick with a single knife. If you’re a beginner, you might find yourself gravitating towards multi-purpose knives like chefs knives or santokus, but as you get deeper and deeper into the world of cooking you’ll reach out for some more specialized tools.
That’s where having a wide variety of styles and sizes is useful. If you pick a good knife maker that high-quality blades, you can be assured that their level of quality holds up across their production line. So if you really love the chef’s knife you got from them and are looking for a carving knife or a boning knife, you’ll more than likely find what they’re looking for without having to risk it with another knife brand.
This dovetails perfectly into our next factor to consider, which is variety of design. When you buy a premium object like a good kitchen knife, you’re also looking to communicate something about yourself with the tool. Quality kitchen knives don’t just work great, they also look good in your kitchen, and you want to make sure the knife you buy fits your own personal aesthetic.
For this reason, choose a knife brand with a reputation for visual presentation and style. You might feel a little silly at first because we’ve been trained to believe that knives are entirely practical tools, but the truth of the matter is that aesthetics are important, and your knives are part of your kitchen decor. So look for a knife maker that takes that into consideration.
Fourth, choose a brand with a good reputation for customer service in case you need assistance down the road. This is something that a lot of people overlook, and tends to be a source of frustration for many buyers. You’re not just buying the knife itself – you’re also buying the process that follows. The follow-up messages to make sure you’re happy with your purchase. The attentive customer service you should contact if something went wrong. And even the helpful email newsletter with tips and tricks on how to use your new purchase. A limited lifetime warranty is also a good perk.
If you pick the right knife brand, you’re not just getting a product – you’re joining a community. So look for a good knife brand that puts an effort into fostering that community, and makes sure that its members are well taken care of. And hey, a satisfaction guarantee is always a plus.
How about additional products? Does your knife brand also make cutting boards? How about kitchenware? Do they offer knife collections? Are there knife sets you can get? A good knife brand will hopefully give you a variety of options for the presentation of your kitchen tools, as well as other tools that go beyond knives.
Finally, make sure the price is right by comparing prices across different kitchen knife brands before making your purchase. Knives are premium products and sometimes that can mean extremely expensive prices. Avoid the price gougers and look for companies that put a fair price on their products. Good quality knives should be more accessible to a wider range of people.
By keeping these factors in mind, you can be sure to find the best possible knives for your kitchen needs!
3. What Are Some Popular Knife Brands?
If you’re new to the world of knife makers, you might find yourself a little overwhelmed at the amount of brands available. And when you’re looking for the best kitchen knife brands, learning about each one of them is a daunting proposition. We’ve put together a quick explainer of some of the more popular knife brands, including pros and cons of each one.
Wusthof is one of the most well-known and respected names in the kitchenware industry, and they’ve been producing knives since 1814. The company was founded by Johann Abraham Wüsthof and is based in Solingen, Germany, where they also make their knives.
Wusthof’s craftsmanship encompasses a 40-step process that results in a fantastic, high-quality product. They’ve been a respected brand for two centuries. The company sports several knife collections, and some of their most famous knives are the Wusthofs Classic, Wusthof Classic Ikon, and Wusthof Grand Prix.
- Long history of top-quality cutlery production, with over 200 years in the industry.
- Their blades are sharp and durable.
Their blades are made of the same material, so choosing is a lot easier.
- Not a lot of variety when it comes to knife design.
- Some reviews state that their edges dull quickly.
- The knife appearance is a bit understated and dull.
- Pretty pricey thanks to their production method.
- Reportedly, their customer service is not a great experience.
Zwilling is a knife brand with a long, long history; in fact, knifemaker Peter Henckels registered their logo in 1731, making them one of the oldest registered trademarks in the world.
It’s important to clarify that Zwilling and Zwilling JA Henckels AG are two different knife brands made by the same company. Zwilling JA Henckels are more of an entry-level brand, while Zwilling knives are forged premium blades.
- A long, long history of knifemaking.
- They feature classic and elegant designs; they’re understated, but have a timeless beauty to them.
- Their knives mostly use German steel, which is preferred by many home cooks.
- They feature a wide variety of handles.
- The softer steel they use tends to lose sharpness quicker.
- They’re not exactly known to innovate or think outside of the box when it comes to the knives they make.
- Their high production costs make their knives more expensive than many home cooks can afford.
Shun hasn’t been in the world of knife-making for long. However, their origins date back all the way to early 20th century Japan, as their parent company (KAI Group) has been creating all sorts of products for many years. The Shun brand, however, was only introduced to the Western market in 2002.
Once they got into knife making, their products started garnering accolades. The brand has been able to establish itself as a producer of high-end quality knives, hand-made by artisans. Their knives have garnered awards for their level of craftsmanship and performance.
- The company has a long, respectable tradition.
- Their knives are sharp and durable, painstakingly handmade by artisans.
They have a concise selection of knives, which makes it easier to choose.
- Their knives don’t feature a lot of variety.
- Their products are actually fairly expensive.
- Their customer service lacks the personal touch that other companies put into building a community.
- Their knife designs tend to be rather plain.
Misen is a company that in a very short time has managed to make a name for itself by creating quality products and presenting them in the most straightforward way possible. The guiding principle behind Misen is “simple is best.”
Misen sprung up as a knife maker and quickly started expanding to other parts of the culinary world, making kitchenware and other tools. Their knives are made of stainless steel and are generally regarded to be good quality. They’re also elegant and attractive in their presentation while managing to keep their prices down in comparison to premium knife makers.
- Good quality knives at affordable prices.
- Simplistic design and looks.
Their knives come with a 60 day “test drive.”
- The knives on offer are fairly limited.
- Their designs aren’t particularly interesting.
- Not a lot of room for customization.
Dalstrong is a relatively new company. It was founded in 2014 by David Dallaire in Toronto, Canada. The company’s young outlook is reflected in two key things: their desire to innovate (constantly creating new knife designs) and their emphasis on presentation (making sure the knives they create are stylish and awesome-looking).
Dalstrong also makes it a point to offer a broad range of designs and knife styles. There are all sorts of different knife series in their store, made of different materials and with different aesthetic approaches, taking inspiration from both Japanese knives and Western style knives.
Dalstrong has also become famous for their customer service, which is always speedy and attentive. They make it a point to build a community with their customers, often posting interesting content on social media and sending out newsletters with recipes, polls, etc.
- This company has a wide assortment of great knives of all styles and sizes.
- They put a lot of effort into creating a highly stylish, visually attractive product.
- The knives are extremely razor-sharp right out of the box.
- Dalstrong knives are much more affordable than comparable knife brands since they are able to keep production costs down.
They are acclaimed for their speedy customer service and continued community building.
- Dalstrong is a young company still figuring out its own identity.
- Some of their knives tend to be somewhat flashy and ostentatious.
- The fact that they have so many options makes it hard to choose.
4. Best Dalstrong Knife For You
Dalstrong is a relatively young knife brand that has been able to establish itself as a force to be reckoned with in the world of knifemaking. And part of the reason is their innovative spirit. Not only do they have extremely stylish, reliable versions of the classic knives, but they are also not afraid to break with convention and create something that’s brand new.
Here are a few utterly unique Dalstrong knives that display the company’s penchant for originality and thinking outside the box.
This knife is the dream of any barbecue enthusiast, whether that’s you or someone in your close circle. This 9” BBQ pitmaster knife is designed specifically to be a trusty sidekick to anyone who is manning a grill at a backyard get-together. Not only does it look amazing (check out the knife’s pitch-black titanium nitride coating and F-117 Nighthawk Stealth Fighter inspired geometry), it’s also an incredible performer.
It all comes down to two things: design and materials. This knife features a double pointed tip and a curved edge, allowing the pitmaster to easily tackle any challenge that arises. So not only does it have the “unique” factor, it’s also an extremely practical tool. And the fact that it’s made of high carbon 7CR17MOV-X steel means it’s durable and sturdy.
- Looks incredible: the black, non-reflective titanium nitride coating and the angular design makes this one of the most interesting looking knives you’re likely to find.
- Also features a powerful blade, precision forged ultra sharp high carbon steel.
- The handle is also very comfortable, made of fiber-resin military-grade G10, nearly impervious to heat, cold, or moisture.
- Hand-sharpened to 16-18 degrees per side, for maximum sharpness and sturdiness.
- Is this knife awesome-looking? Yes. Is its design a little “out there” for some folks? Also yes. Look, there’s no shame in preferring something a little more understated, in which case there’s many other knives available in the Dalstrong store.
- The titanium nitride coating might make you a little hesitant when it comes to sharpening it, but you’ll get the hang of it..
Speaking of knives that look great and handle like a dream, here’s a formidable 8inch chefs knife & cleaver hybrid knife from Dalstrong’s ruggedly stylish Delta Wolf series. This powerful tool brings together elements of two of the most commonly used quality kitchen knives: the chef knife, which is the all-purpose kitchen powerhouse; and the cleaver, which brings heft and power to the equation for performing all manner of tough tasks. The end result? A knife unlike any other.
Whether you’re needing a knife that chops down with maximum force or something that cuts with precision, this knife’s stunning design brings together the best of both worlds. Strength and finesse in a single package. And look at the blade itself – it looks like nothing you’ve ever seen before. It’s made of high-carbon steel with an onyx-black titanium nitride coating, which helps reduce friction and adds an extra layer of protection.
- The blade is ultra-sharp, wear-resistant high carbon 9CR18MOV steel at 60 Rockwell hardness. Not only that, but it’s ultra thin at 1.6mm.
- Looks incredible thanks to the titanium nitride coating and the camouflage handle.
- Brings together elements of the chef’s knife and the classic cleaver to create something brand new.
- The knife edge is hand-sharpened to 8 - 12 degrees.
- Another knife with a unique look that won’t appeal to every single person, but there’s no accounting for taste!
- If you’re looking for a more traditional cleaver or chef’s knife, check out some of the other options in the Daltrong store.
The Obliterator puts it all out there with just the name. This knife is an impressive piece of kitchen gadgetry that is designed to obliterate any culinary task you throw at it. Once again, this is a cleaver, but not just any old cleaver – a cleaver that has been engineered to be so much more. Sail through pork, beef, poultry, or any tough-skinned produce you can find.
- This awesome knife comes with its very own acacia wood stand, and it is absolutely beautiful
- An impressively constructed knife, made of ultra-sharp high carbon 7CR17MOV steel with an expert heat treatment and hand-sharpened to 16-18 degrees per side.
- Its military-grade G10 handle is easy to use, comfortable, and durable.
- The blade has added chromium for stain resistance.
- The acacia wood stand is an awesome bonus, but make sure you actually have the counter space to keep it.
- This knife is pretty heavy, which some home cooks might not be used to..
Another knife that is unique to Dalstrong and points to the company’s incessant itch to create new, interesting, stylish knives. Check it out: not only does this 6 inch knife serve as an awesome utility knife, it also serves as a handy tool for pitmasters. There are unique designs on the blade, such as the pointed tip and the built-in bottle opener, that were incorporated specifically to make manning the grill a delight.
- Not only does this knife feature an interesting and unique design, it is also absolutely stunning to look at. Check out the celestian resin handle with stabilized wood. Absolutely dreamy.
- This knife is not only to clean, it’s also to look after. No long, convoluted processes to make sure it’s protected.
- The blade itself is extremely sharp and wear resistant.
- If that wasn’t enough, this gorgeous knife comes with a Valhalla-embossed leather sheath. Stylish and practical.
- Keep an eye out for the knife’s unique shape when it comes to hand-washing it. The bottle opener might pose a bit of risk.
- Once again, if you prefer a more understated look to your knives, you might not be a fan of this particular knife’s flashier presentation.
This knife rocks. Okay, please excuse the pun, but it’s actually true! This 12 inch cleaver knife is an absolute monster when it comes to kitchen performance. It can be used for a wide variety of tasks: slicing up pizza, shaving meat for a shawarma, slicing up brisket, preparing taco fillings, or preparing any manner of fruit and vegetables. And the fact that it’s so comfortable to use means you can apply it to the toughest tasks without succumbing to hand fatigue.,
When we say this knife is powerful, we mean it! This huge 12 inch blade is made of high-carbon 7CR17MOV steel, heat-treated to 56 Rockwell hardness. That means that it will hold its blade edge really well. It comes sharpened to 16-18 degrees, so it’ll be a while before you have to sharpen it.
- The steel on this knife is premium high-carbon 7CR17MOV steel sharpened to 16-18 degrees.
- Features a menacing and intimidating look! Definitely a knife that will elicit some comments.
- The handle is an ultra-premium military-grade G10, extremely durable and comfortable.
- This is actually a limited edition, and each knife comes with a laser inscription numbering on the blade.
- At 12 inches, this knife is large! Most home cooks don’t need a knife that large, so think about whether you really need it.
- And as you might expect, this knife is also fairly heavy. It might take some getting used to at first.
5. Frequently Asked Questions
What knives do top chefs recommend?
Top chefs recommend a wide array of knives. Michelin star chefs such as Dominique Crenn have thrown their support behind Dalstrong as a premier knifemaker, singling out the Crusader series in particular.
Which knife is best for everyday use?
The best kitchen knife for daily use is the chefs knife. Chefs knives are great due to their shape, their size, and their ease of use. They can be applied to a wide variety of kitchen tasks, causing some folks to claim that they’re the only knife you really need.
Which knife is best for beginners?
The best knife for a beginner is an 8inch chefs knife, and we recommend the 8 inch chef’s knife from Dalstrong’s Gladiator series. Thanks to the knife’s size and design elements, any beginner home cook will be able to master it without much trouble, and hopefully it’ll open the door to trying new knives out.
Written by Jorge Farah
Born on the coast of Colombia and based in Buenos Aires, Jorge is a cooking enthusiast and kitchenware obsessive with a tremendous amount of opinions.