The chef knife is arguably the number one tool in a kitchen. If the house is burning down, get the photo album (are those still a thing?), get the family, and get the chef knives! Okay maybe not extreme of an example, but you get my point. There is nothing worse than using a knife that is dull or has a broken-off tip, or fits uncomfortably in your hand. It makes cooking not very fun. A great chef knife will make you a rock star in the kitchen. In this review, I will be taking a look at the chef club knife (TheChefClub) and put it against my trusty Cutco knife along with my Shun knife.
We will see how they measure up. This knife showdown is not super in-depth, just a few challenges to see what they can do. Then I will decide if they are worth the money or not.
Cutco is an American brand that has been around for ages, 1949 to be exact. I remember my oldest brother selling Cutco knives when he was in his late teens. A friend of mine sold me 4 awesome knives, and I have had them for 11 years now. Their claim to fame? They boast a forever warranty. If the knife breaks in any way, send it in for a brand new one. They are known for being really sharp and fit well in the hand. The downside is they cost a fair amount.
TheChefClub is a relatively new company known for manufacturing and material development. They put out a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for their new line of chef knives. Headquartered in Hong Kong, they bring sleek looking sharp knives to the table with one of the most impressive marketing videos I have ever seen. You can see it on their website. There is a video where a man holding a knife cuts through a tomato without touching the tomato. It is pretty incredible.
Shun is a Japanese brand that comes highly rated. They have won many awards for “Best Chef Knife.” They are known for having amazing aesthetics not to mention incredibly sharp edges. Every knife is handmade with an impressive 100 steps. Great knives indeed!
The Chef Knife Showdown
The first thing I noticed with my chef club knife is that it is made with a matrix powder steel. I wasn’t sure what that was so I had to look it up on their site. It is what gives the knives their “superior sharpness and long-term edge retention.” I also noticed that it was one full piece of steel and it’s actually surprisingly light for how big it is. Also, this knife looks pretty awesome. I love how it fits really well in my hand, which is very important. If you are going to be using a tool for long periods of time over and over again, it needs to be comfortable.
Chef Knife Challenge #1: Corn on the Cob
For the first challenge, I wanted to cut through an ear of corn while still in the husk with each of the knives. I was looking for how easily it cuts through and how clean of a cut it gives me. Corn is pretty hard on the inside and it’s got this fibrous husk on the outside. So if you don’t have a very good knife it’s really hard to cut all the way through one of these.
First up the Shun
First I will start with my little Shun Sora knife. It was not that easy to cut through the ear of corn and it didn’t do a great job cutting through the husk either.
Next, I used my trusty Cutco Knife. It did a little bit better but it had a hard time getting a really clean cut through the husk.
Now on to the chef Club knife. The knife cut through the corn beautifully, so that was definitely the winner, nice clean straight cut. Look at how clean that cut is pretty awesome. I was impressed. So that point goes to the chef Club knife. On to the next challenge.
Chef Knife Challenge #2: Tomato slicing
Next up I took a Roma tomato and wanted to see how thinly I could slice it. Also, I wanted to see if I could cut it as the guy did in the marketing video. Generally, when I would cut tomatoes I would use a serrated edged knife. One of the things that interested me about the chef Club knife was that viral video. In it, a guy took a knife and sliced super thin slices without holding the tomato. I didn’t have that high of hopes but was still intrigued, time to find out if I too could cut the tomato in the same way.
Again I started with the Shun. First I tried to do it without holding the tomato. Nope, didn’t work because the knife just pushed the tomato over. I wound up just holding it. Normally I wouldn’t cut a tomato this way but because I wanted to replicate what I saw in the video I did. The Shun Chef knife cut through the tomato pretty well.
Next, I used my Cutco knife. It sliced through it very well.
And now the chef Club knife. I again first tried doing it without holding the tomato, and as I suspected the tomato just fell over. So I held the bottom and like the others, it cut through it really well producing a nice thin slice.
Tomato slicing round #2
Finally, I turned the tomato on its side how you normally would slice a tomato.
The chef club knife cut through the tomato like butter. Next, I tried the Cutco knife and wow, it did a really great job. And the Shun sliced through it very well too. All of them did an incredible job slicing thin slices off the tomato. If I had to call a winner on the tomato I would say the slight “edge” goes to the Cutco knife here.
That concludes my little review of the chef club knife and the showdown. Below are the prices for the knives:
- Cutco – ($136)
- Shun Sora – ($69)
- TheChefClub – ($59 for a short time then $99)
Cutco 7-5/8″ Petite Chef Knife
Shun Sora 6″ Chef’s Knife
TheChefClub 8″ Chef Knife
When all is said an done I am very happy with each one of these knives and you can’t go wrong with any of them. I do really like the look for the chef club knife and how it fits in my hand. It’s also hard to beat the forever warranty that Cutco offers. Pick any one of these knives up and you will be happy!
*Note – At the time of publishing this article TheChefClub knife is not available yet for purchase another Kickstarter campaign will be released soon.