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First Three Knives

Posted by Ben Lew on

What's Knives Should I Get?

Came across this video and it echoes closely with what I always recommend to customers looking for their first knife or first set of knives, especially for new home owners. Some slight variation would be swapping the paring for a petty and serrated instead of bread.

Will be covering more about the numerous factors to take into account when choosing knives in future blog posts or this blog would never end. Today, we'll just be covering these three knife profiles to help you narrow down the choices when choosing your first (second, third..) knives.

Chef Knife

If there is ever one knife to rule them all, it would be the Chef's knife. Used as a mainstay/workhorse in kitchens all over the world for centuries and refined over that time till present day. It can perform perhaps 95% of tasks you would need in a kitchen save for a few exceptions like opening an oyster.

If you only want one knife in your kitchen or just have the budget for one knife, let it be a good Chef's knife, a close alternative for home kitchens would be the Santoku which is a also an all-purpose knife and usually comes in shorter lengths and more suitable for push cutting but little less so for rock slicing/chopping.

Petty Knife (Utility)

The petty knife is basically a small all-purpose knife. Smaller knives are simply easier to handle and shines naturally when preparing smaller ingredients like dicing garlic cloves, shallots, or cutting up small fruits (strawberries). Sure, a chef knife could cut a strawberry too but the idea here is to choose the best knife for the task at hand.

A bonus use for a petty knife would be to use it as a steak knife at the dinner table.

Serrated Knife

Most people know it as a bread knife but as pointed out in the video, the name bread knife does not really do it justice as it is simply so much more than that. Apart from the obvious task of getting perfectly sliced bread, serrated knives are useful in a myriad of scenarios such as pumpkin and butternut to name a few.


Whilst it's convenient to buy a knife block with several knives to covers a vast range of knife profiles, more often than not you are overpaying for more knives than you actually need.

A good knife may cost more but a good knife also last for a really really long time depending on your usage, if you average it out over it's lifespan it's probably one of the best investments for a home.

I strongly recommend popping by to any local knife shop and just look at the knives mentioned above, pick up a few options and see what feels comfortable in your hands and give it a try.

Some recommendations below to get you started on your search if you haven't already:

Futana S3 Nashiji Gyuto 210mm

Futana S3 Nashiji Petty 135mm

Tsubaya Bread Knife 210mm

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