Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Benriner Japanese Mandoline


 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone,

Am busy crossing people off my xmas list and a fellow foodie has requested a mandoline. Have narrowed the choice down to the Benriner. Have any of you come across it anywhere aside from Ming Wo (their website says their standard size is $37.98 and their super is $69.98). I could swear I saw it somewhere cheaper, but cannot for the life of me remember where. Thanks in advance!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a bit off topic, but I am compelled to comment. I really don't know if the Benriner is good or not. But, it appears to be a compromise. I subscribe to the attitude that pricey tools are almost always worth it. Assuming that there is a strong correlation between price and quality/functionality/efficacy. It is just so rarely worth it to buy a cheap tool. If it is so full of compromise that it becomes a chore to use, it is infinitely more expensive (since you never use it) despite the initial low cost.

The above though is only a philosophy of buying tools. I have no idea about mandolins, I just know that they generally cost a LOT more than that. The Benriner might be that jewel in the rough - I don't know. But, I do know that I would think long and hard before buying a cheap tool.

Mark.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 bucks for a "standard" and 70 bucks for a "super" (quotations mine because i've no idea what dimensions those terms refer to) - seems like a very entry level price for a mandoline unless the quality/functionality is comparable to price asked.

Last time I checked a good Mandoline was quite a bit more ... in the multiple hundreds of dollars.

Might have to check out this product myself. Am going to Metrotown this afternoon for a moment (I think) anyways. Might zip down to the bottom floor, hit Ming Wo, and maybe grab some eats at T&T.

*edit* did a quick search and this is what you're looking at approximately.

Standard:

http://www.sharpknives.com/gourmets_toolbo...able_slicer.htm

3 1/2" wide X 12 1/4" long

Super:

from what I gather is identical except for the dimensions at - 5" wide X 13 1/2" Long

Here's another link:

http://www.sharpknives.com/gourmets_toolbo...tion_shots_.htm

Edited by bill_n_opus (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cookworks carries it, and I believe it is a little less expensive.

As for quality, my mom purchased one of these many many moons ago and it's been fabulous, she still uses it. Not everyone can afford to have the $120 stainless french model. This one works and works well, what more do need.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe Gourmet Warehouse also carries them but I'm not sure of the price. I purchased the standard benriner several years ago. For home use I think they are a excellent alternative to the more expensive mandolines.

Support your local farmer

Currently reading:

The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters

Just finished reading:

The 100-Mile Diet by Alisa Smith & J. B. MacKinnon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I love my Benriner slicer! The blade is razor sharp and the julienne blade attatchment makes gorgeous carrot strands. I cut the tip of my finger off with it while making radish slices and it was the most painful cut of my career. I picked mine up for $17.99 at a local Asian grocery store, but my local gourmet grocery store sells them for over $30.00. They make great Christmas gifts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Benriner's are pretty standard in the industry. They are cheaper, sharper, easier to use, and last a fair amount of time. I just bought a new one down at Granville Island, South China Seas for a decent price...and i had looked at the price at Ming wo, and thought "No Way".

These are useful tools and definitely do NOT fall under the "CHEAPLY MADE" category that the above people are implying. I just bought a fish scaler from Benriner. I had been looking for it for 8 years...was the best one i ever tried....found it at Ming Wo in China Town. $9 DEAL!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^ I have to agree, I usually go after the model that if something costs more it's because it will last longer/work better/look nicer but in some cases there are items out there where the mechanism is so simple that there really is no need to spend copious amounts of money on it. A mandolin is a pretty simple mechanism and the only thing I would fret about is the blade replacement capability. But spending multi hundred dollars is a bit much for the home user for one of these things.

That being said I still want to buy the crazy braun immersion blender with stainless steel immersion piece and 400W of ice crunching power even though I'm sure the 250W version would do :biggrin:

"There are two things every chef needs in the kitchen: fish sauce and duck fat" - Tony Minichiello

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i own both the $200+ fancy stainless steel mandoline and the $30+ plastic Benriner....I nearly always reach (carfully--that's sharp!) for the Benriner....unless I need to adjust the thickness beyond the two "thick" or "thin" slicing settings, the plastic jobbie works great, is easier to clean, and has a better hand guard than the fancy-shmancy one.

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a bit off topic, but I am compelled to comment.  I really don't know if the Benriner is good or not.  But, it appears to be a compromise.  I subscribe to the attitude that pricey tools are almost always worth it.  Assuming that there is a strong correlation between price and quality/functionality/efficacy.  It is just so rarely worth it to buy a cheap tool.  If it is so full of compromise that it becomes a chore to use, it is infinitely more expensive (since you never use it) despite the initial low cost.

The above though is only a philosophy of buying tools.  I have no idea about mandolins, I just know that they generally cost a LOT more than that.  The Benriner might be that jewel in the rough - I don't know.  But, I do know that I would think long and hard before buying a cheap tool.

Mark.

Definitely not a compromise. I have used these in a few VERY busy Japanese restaurants, and after years of use (without a new blade) this little mandoline performed amazingly. This device is a staple in many a Japanese kitchen and would be a great addition to any kitchen drawer.

Daikon, cucumbers, carrots.. you name it, this is hands down one fantastic little machine. "Jewel"? - YES "cheap" or "in the rough" - far from it.

"Live every moment as if your hair were on fire" Zen Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I love my Benriner slicer!  The blade is razor sharp and the julienne blade attatchment makes gorgeous carrot strands.  I cut the tip of my finger off with it while making radish slices and it was the most painful cut of my career. I picked mine up for $17.99 at a local Asian grocery store, but my local gourmet grocery store sells them for over $30.00.  They make great Christmas gifts.

Chefdavid321:

Would you care to share the name of your local Asian grocery store? I'm miles away from any gourmet store.

and also:

Thanks everyone!

I didn't want to cause a controversy. I'm usually of the opinion that better is synonomous with expensive, but apparently not in the case of mandolines. I've done some research and it seems that the Benriner is really highly regarded by many home cooks and restaurants alike. Unfortunately, this year being the first with a little one makes the budget (shock! horror!) something I have to stick to. So a Benriner. :smile:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone!

I didn't want to cause a controversy. I'm usually of the opinion that better is synonomous with expensive, but apparently not in the case of mandolines. I've done some research and it seems that the Benriner is really highly regarded by many home cooks and restaurants alike. Unfortunately, this year being the first with a little one makes the budget (shock! horror!) something I have to stick to. So a Benriner. :smile:

Hey! Controversy is healthy!

The first time I saw a Benriner, I had the same reaction as well.

"You want me to slice ALL of these with THIS little thing!?"

:wink:

"Live every moment as if your hair were on fire" Zen Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have had one of these for about four years for home use and would highly recommend it. Good sharp blade. Value for the money, easy to clean.

Baconburner

Hi everyone,

Am busy crossing people off my xmas list and a fellow foodie has requested a mandoline. Have narrowed the choice down to the Benriner. Have any of you come across it anywhere aside from Ming Wo (their website says their standard size is $37.98 and their super is $69.98). I could swear I saw it somewhere cheaper, but cannot for the life of me remember where. Thanks in advance!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The first person I ever saw using a mandoline gave himself the manicure from hell, and I consequently would not enter a room where one was kept. Then I began cooking, and was faced with a Frensh Bron mandoline in a do or die type situation. I did, and still have all of my digits.

There are now a suburb's worth of Bron/Matfer clones out there, and aside from my Bron, my next favorite European-style mandoline is the Oxo ... for stability, sharpness, and ease of set up.

I was fluent in mandoline when I first encountered a Benrinner - through Barbara Tropp's suggestion. I found it to be incredibly sharp, easy to set up, easy to clean (hallelujah!), but totally scary because it did not have the stability that my good old Bron did. It just took some getting used to, plus and understanding that you do not have to shred, slice, julienne, or otherwise garrotte every last little piece of whatever you might be cutting.

So now I have both. I use them for different things - mainly the Bron for julienne and gaufrette cuts, and the Benrinner for the rest. Like anything else, they are both great implements. My only suggestion would be to price the mandoline at a real, gray and gritty commercial restaurant supply store (when chinois were running at 100 I go a French one for 54) and to check an Asian market with a well muscled kitchenwares section for the Benrinner. They are getting way too expensive in kitchen shops.

Theabroma

Sharon Peters aka "theabroma"

The lunatics have overtaken the asylum

Link to comment
Share on other sites

you can pick them up at Fujiya, and sometimes i've seen them in shops on Powell Street in Japantown.  Benriner is great.  Unless you are making gaufrettes, you don't need a mandaline.

Great to see your post! I was trying to search their site, figuring that they should have them, but had problems with my I.P.

I'm guessing you mean the store in Vancouver?

What is the price, if you know? TIA

"If cookin' with tabasco makes me white trash, I don't wanna be recycled."

courtesy of jsolomon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I picked up my Benriner mandoline (excellent tool) from a kitchen store in Chinatown. Can't remember the name, but it's on the same street as Ming Wo (I think that's Pender) but on the other side of the street. Head south from Ming Wo, one or two blocks up. You'll notice the store has a lot of various dishes for sale and the mandolines can be found at the counter if you ask.

"One chocolate truffle is more satisfying than a dozen artificially flavored dessert cakes." Darra Goldstein, Gastronomica Journal, Spring 2005 Edition

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...