Sakai Takayuki Grand Chef Japanese Gyuto/Chef's Knife 270mm (10.6") Wooden Handle, Water Buffalo Horn Ferrule
This is a great knife! It uses an excellent Swedish stainless steel so the blade is hard for superb edge retention and sharpness, durable, rust-resistant and easy to maintain, and you get the very useful and standard gyuto/chef's knife shape. But the handle is traditional wooden Japanese-style, and you even get a beautiful water buffalo horn ferrule (bolster). Note that the exact bolster colour will vary... there is normally some variation and marbling which only adds to the natural beauty of the material.
This is a very lightweight knife -- the blade is thin, and the handle material (natural wood) is light, so the overall weight is approx. 179g, which is SUPER light for a knife of this length. This means that even though the blade length is long by normal "home use" standards, it does NOT feel large since it's so light and easy to handle. I suppose this is also why they don't bother to make smaller versions (no, a 210mm version is not available). The blade and edge are expertly finished and VERY sharp. This is a great looking and high performance knife. Highly recommended!
NOTE: This knife is sharpened 50/50 (equally on the right and left side), so it's easy to maintain and fine for right or left hand use. If you look carefully at the edge, you'll see a slight right-side bias, this is just because the final edge is so tiny and because of the way they finish the edge; it has NO bearing on right- or left-hand use, sharpening or maintenance and can be ignored, so you should treat the edge just like any standard 50/50 edge.
Note: Photo shows 240mm version... the 270 is the same, but simply 3cm longer.
All Grand Chef series knives are made from high quality Bohler N685 stainless steel. This is a martensitic chromium stainless steel with added molybdenum and vanadium, which results in high hardness and good wear resistance, with excellent corrosion resistance -- an ideal steel for durable and sharp kitchen knives! Grand Chef blades are hard and tough with long lasting edges. HRC approx. 59-60 for sharpness and ease of maintenance and sharpening.
I would recommend the fine ceramic hone listed below for everyday maintenance.