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A Folding Knife for the Kitchen


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61 replies to this topic

#1 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 05:45 PM

Here's the scenario--you're going to someone's house where you're likely to be pressed into service in the kitchen, and you know they don't have a decent knife in the house, but you don't want to be so presumptuous or it's otherwise inconvenient to carry a knife roll. Or maybe you're going away for a weekend where you'll be cooking and you want to travel light. Of course one can always make do with what's there, but maybe there's an alternative.

Does anyone have a folding knife they particularly like for culinary tasks? I'm imagining something with a blade on the order of 4-5", sharp, maybe even rockable like a chef's knife.

Hunting around on the internet, I found these two folding santuko-style knives--

http://www.cherusker...29&Currency=USD

http://www.agrussell...o/p/AG-136VG10/

There's also a larger Laguiole "Wine Merchant's Knife"--

http://www.thebestth...er_laguiole.htm

Anyone have any experience with any of these or maybe others? Of these three I'm leaning toward the Ryback.

Edited by David A. Goldfarb, 28 August 2010 - 05:46 PM.


#2 Dakki

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 06:23 PM

The SAK (actually Dutch surplus) on my keychain does a lot of kitchen work at other people's houses.

I've heard horror stories about frame locks and liner locks (similar designs) and wouldn't mess with them, period. The Ryback is one such knife.
This is my skillet. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My skillet is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it, as I must master my life. Without me my skillet is useless. Without my skillet, I am useless. I must season my skillet well. I will. Before God I swear this creed. My skillet and myself are the makers of my meal. We are the masters of our kitchen. So be it, until there are no ingredients, but dinner. Amen.

#3 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 07:48 PM

More on the Ryback and its frame lock here--

http://www.tactical-...ding-camp-chef/

#4 judiu

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 10:09 PM

I'm very partial to my Hocho, from AG Russell. This is the second one I've had, lost the first one in a house fire. This one is a 'second'; the one I had before had an extremely sharp edge on the back end of the blade, and I ALWAYS ended up with a slice of me in the food, from being careless. I love it for 'work away from home' projects, but because the blade is not serrated, it doesn't work too well on tomatoes. Onions, celery, meat, eggs, , firm fruit, fish (some), even soft or canned fruit, if appearance is not critical, are all fine. Potatoes are great victims, as is broccoli and the stems thereof, cauliflower, cabbage, small squash, etc.
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#5 Blether

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Posted 28 August 2010 - 10:28 PM

You could do worse than an Opinel.
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#6 budrichard

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 05:43 AM

NYC has VERY restrictive knife laws and I believe anything over 4" concealed is illegal and a folder would fall under that definition. In Wisconsin in public you can possess any length of blade as long as the knife is not for self defense. I have a stainless knife case for when I travel with my kitchen knives and that is what I would tell any LEO. I don't know what would work in your jurisdiction except to say, NYC laws are the most restrictive in the USA.-Dick

#7 JimS

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 06:02 AM

There was a post on Food 52 not long ago that mentioned the Opinel pocket knife as a picnic essential. It looked like it might do fine pressed into kitchen service.

#8 Susie Q

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 07:16 AM

I've had an Opinel #6 in my lunch bag and kept a couple #10's in a picnic kit for years. I love them.

edited to add: they are also cheap enough to replace if I lose one or left one behind.

Edited by Susie Q, 29 August 2010 - 07:18 AM.


#9 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 10:32 AM

I've handled an Opinel, and it does offer a lot of bang for the buck, but it's not exactly what I'm looking for.

Interesting point about NYC knife laws. Of course one sees culinary students and professionals walking around the city with their knife rolls all the time. I know someone who was stopped by a police officer for carrying a folding knife that he used for his work in a sheath on his belt, I think because he was walking down a block where a crime had just taken place, and the police officer recommended actually that he just keep it in his bag (i.e., he advised him to conceal it), to avoid attracting attention or intimidating people. I stopped carrying a Swiss Army Knife some time after 9/11 when I had it temporary confiscated at a court house when I was on jury duty. They gave it back at the end of the day, but I didn't want to deal with the hassle of checking it and picking it up whenever I had to enter a secure building.

Edited by David A. Goldfarb, 29 August 2010 - 10:37 AM.


#10 budrichard

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 10:51 AM

Chicago makes possesion of any knife with a blade length greater than 2&1/2" illegal.
I had Bob Terzuola make me a special version of his smalll folder with a blade length less than 2&1/2". Don't know if it would be much use for anything but one does not fool around with Chicago cops!-Dick

#11 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 11:05 AM

Here's the NYC law-

http://codes.lp.find...ADC/10/1/10-133

Section D leaves a lot open to the interpretation of the officer and common sense. A culinary student or cook can obviously carry a knife longer than 4". Someone going to or coming from a picnic or fishing can carry an appropriate knife. The knife should be concealed. Switchblades and gravity knives are not permitted, as I understand it, but there is probably an exception if you happen to be missing an arm.

Edited by David A. Goldfarb, 29 August 2010 - 11:07 AM.


#12 paulraphael

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 11:28 AM

I'd never seen the full text of the law. Good to know that you can brandish a blade longer than 4 inches if it

d)
is displayed or carried by a duly enrolled member of the Boy or Girl
Scouts of America or a similar organization or society and such display
or possession is necessary to participate in the activities of such
organization or society.

For all practical purposes, I think you're fine if the knife is packed away and not easy to get your hands on. A folding knife in your pocket might be pushing it, but who's going to find it?

#13 budrichard

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 01:59 PM

"Switchblades and gravity knives are not permitted, as I understand it, but there is probably an exception if you happen to be missing an arm."

A number of retailers under threat of legal action have stopped selling gravity assisted knives and some manufactures will not do business with anyone in the State of New York. The New York Custom Knife Show is moving to New Jersey because a number of makers will no longer come to New York. Chicago still maintains its Custom Knife Show but sooner or later Chicago may be like New York City.
As far as I know there is no provision for an assisted opening knife for anyone in the New York law.-Dick

#14 Foodietopo

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 05:23 PM

I sometime carry an Opinel, but I am seriously considering getting a Misono fruit knife. I know that these knives aren't folders, but they just seem very practical. The knife sheat fits very well.
Here is the link to the Japanese website to give you an idea:

http://www.misono-ha...NIFE/fruit.html

I think you would not get in trouble carrying one of these since they are clearly cooking knives.

Edited by Foodietopo, 29 August 2010 - 05:23 PM.

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#15 mr drinkie

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 05:51 PM

I've had my eye out for these too and in all of my searches, these two from Maruyoshi MFG out of Japan are the best I've seen.

Folding Kitchen Knives


Now with that said, I don't know where to buy them but there is an e-mail address at the bottom of the document. It might take a bit of work to find them.

k.
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#16 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 07:50 PM

Thanks for the pointer to Maruyoshi. I sent them an e-mail.

#17 mr drinkie

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 07:57 PM

If you hear back, let me know how much they cost. Good luck.

k.
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#18 Foodietopo

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Posted 29 August 2010 - 10:26 PM

Please keep us posted on the price, I could not find anything about this knife in Japan with my limited Japanese.
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#19 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 04:26 AM

Maruyoshi says their U.S. representative is japanwoodworker.com . I've e-mailed them, and I'll report back. They do not show these knives on their website or in the online version of their print catalogue.

#20 Foodietopo

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 05:17 AM

I ordered the santoku today directly from Maruyoshi. The knife is 14000 yen including shipping in Japan. The owner seem to read and write English really well. I am sending the money tomorrow by special mail, so I should get the knife early next week or maybe before the weekend.

I've been looking for a knife like that for a while to replace my Opinel, so I was happy to see this link today on your post.
I will report back on how the knife performs.

I intend to bring it on road trip and use it to eat fresh veggies and fruits when I stop at local market along the road. Seems like the perfect knife for the job.

My everyday knife is a Global Pro chef knife and a Aritsugu petty knife, this one looks a lot more practical to travel around.
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#21 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 07:39 AM

That's about $165 USD. I'll be very interested to hear your report!

#22 isomer

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 09:13 PM

How about a SOG Autoclip? They're not expensive, and very good quality. It's about the equivalent of a paring knife.

#23 Foodietopo

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 07:05 PM

I just received the Maruyoshi folding santoku by express mail. The knife is massive! It's very well made and almost feel like a full size santoku. This knife is not street legal in Japan where the maximum blade length is 4.5 cm.

The damascus blade is so pretty and it's scary sharp like most Japanese blades.

I will post a mini review later tonight along with some pics.
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#24 mr drinkie

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 07:41 PM

I can't wait to hear your review.

I must admit, I would have gone for the nakiri style as my first choice, but the santoku is probably more versatile.

Pics?

k.
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#25 Foodietopo

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 05:05 AM

Just came back from work and I took a few pics of the Maruyoshi folding Santoku.

IMGP0332.jpg

This is next to a Global Santoku and a regular size Swiss knife to show the size difference.
The Maruyoshi is 14 cm when folded. The blade is is 10 cm and the whole knife is 25 cm when unfolded.

IMGP0333.jpg

The blade is V10 Japanese damascus stainless steel. It's simply beautiful. It's my best looking blade so far.
The handle looks like micarta, but I am not 100% certain.
IMGP0335.jpg

The knife is shipped in a box and comes with a black nylon belt holster.

Performance wise, I cut some eggplants and it's a solid performer for it's size. I would not spend hours cutting with it, but if you need a decent knife on the road, it's the knife for you. I going to prepare a whole meal with it soon to see how it performs.

Dealing with Maruyoshi was very easy and shipping in Japan was fast. I got my knife on the second day I ordered. The owner of Maruyoshi is a real gentleman.


Maruyoshi Knife

I think this knife would be a small luxury for most foodie. The only problem with it is the fact that carrying such a knife is illegal in Japan. At this size, it looks more like a hunting knife than a pocket knife.

p.s. I am sorry about the poor quality of the pictures, I recently moved and I haven't set up my light box yet...
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#26 mr drinkie

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 09:58 AM

Thanks for the pictures. Now you got me wanting one.

k.
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#27 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 05:03 PM

Thanks for posting the pictures.

japanwoodworker says their price is $250, but with shipping and customs from Japan, and wire transfer and foreign exchange fees, that may not be too different from ordering direct.

They sent me this screenshot from their stock control software. It's not on their website yet, but they have the knife on order--

MaruyoshiK-115.jpg

Edited by David A. Goldfarb, 01 September 2010 - 05:08 PM.


#28 Foodietopo

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 07:06 PM

250$ is not a bad price when you consider the really bad exchange and the shipping.
Thanks for starting this thread, I found a great knife thanks to it.
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#29 David A. Goldfarb

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 07:19 PM

Thank you for the report! It's hard to get much of a sense for these things just from a catalogue photo. I asked japanwoodworker to let me know when they have it in stock.

#30 Blether

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 07:55 PM

250$ is not a bad price...


If you're happy with your purchase, I'm happy for you. I can't resist saying that that's a lot of dough for a knife that, freehand aside, will restrict you to the 4" strip round the edge of your cutting board. Where you gonna put your fingers, for one thing ? And whenever you cut a slice off something, it'll fall on the floor, for another.

Sure is pretty. Japan's doing a nice job of mimicking the old Middle Eastern technology.

Edited by Blether, 01 September 2010 - 07:58 PM.

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