Sunday, September 21, 2008

A Big Purchase

The last time I was in the restaurant kitchen, I noticed something. Unlike your home kitchen, there are no knives in this kitchen. There aren't many tools around, just a handful of items that everyone share. I come to think of it, I still don't know where the silverware is actually kept. The reason I bring this up? When I was asked to cut something the other night, I didn't know what to do.

The thing is, everyone brings their own tools. The pastry team gals had their own cutters, spatulas, whisks, etc. On the savory side? From a range of knives, to fish spatulas. Everyone has their own stash of utensils and tools. What's a non-chef, part-time (at best), person like me suppose to do in the kitchen?

This weekend, when I was recaping this to my friend JT (who is a culinary school graduate and much more of a pro than I am), she didn't look surprise at all. In fact, she was actually more surprised that the people in the kitchen lent me their knives to use. It became clear that if I was going to continue working in a restaurant kitchen, I was going to need a knife of my own. The one I'm currently using in my kitchen? Not the best. And I'd be embarrased to bring it in. I was going to need a real chef's knife.

Since we were already at the Ferry Building, we decided to hit Sur La Table. With a 15% off Industry Discount, some of the knives were actually a pretty reasonable deal. We headed to the knife counter where the nicest and most informative guy helped me through the process.

The knives ranged in weight, and the grips were different. And of course there's the question of blade size. Off the bat, I knew the 10 inch felt too big for me. Even if it is what you're suppose to use in a professional kitchen, I didn't care. I felt much more comfortable with the 8 inch. (I've got small hands, what can I say??)

The knife man told us it was definitely best to try all the different varieties. As he put it, your knife is like a magic wand. You don't choose the knife, the knife chooses you.

We tried a whole bunch of knives. From the Wusthofs to the Henkels, to the 'female preferred' Globals (because they're so light, apparently many female chefs prefer these). We even tried the Sur La Table Bob Kramer Shun exclusive. Now that is a knife.

After trying 'em all, I settled on the Shun 8 inch Chef’s Knife. It really is the most amazing knife. I found myself going back to it time and time again after trying each of the different knives. It was just the most comfortable. I'm so excited. And so proud. I've never loved a knife before, until now. My first real Chef's Knife. Now I just can't wait to use it!

1 comment:

  1. My tool of choice? Wusthof Classic 10" chef's knife, with the 8" a close runner up. Nothing fancy, a solid work horse. Perfect! Congrats on the purchase.