It’s not unusual for chefs to keep a knife for life once they have found ‘The One’. The trick — it appears — is selecting the highest quality knife in the first place and then performing routine maintenance to keep it in tip-top condition.

There are several factors to consider when choosing a knife — from weight, style and material to brand name and the subsequent cost of choosing a top brand. Aside from these practicalities there is also a personal element to choosing a knife: how comfortably it sits in the chef’s hand and how easy it is to manoeuvre.

To find out more about selecting and getting the best out of a knife, catering supplier Russums spoke to five of the top chefs in the industry: Adam Simmonds, Jeremy Lee, Norbert Niederkofler and twins Sergey and Ivan Berezutskiy

 

Here the chefs share their top ten tips on knife selection and care:

  • Knives are essentially the extension of a chef and the instrument which we use most often in the kitchen. Sergey and Ivan
  • The weight of the knife is massively important, it needs to be equally balanced so that you can get the perfect feel for the knife. Adam
  • Buy one good knife at a time as they last well. It is a riotous cost…a well-filled knife wallet. Jeremy
  • Japanese knives are pieces of art and the edge made for the left-hander is also very important for me. Norbert
  • We can deliberate for a long time about steel and best materials, but even a knife made from the best steel will not be in its prime condition for long if you don’t love it and look after it. Sergey and Ivan
  • Use a wet stone once a week, and sharpen knives on a steel before every use. Adam
  • Global has bags for its knives, so for us who are doing lots of catering and events, the bag is very important, especially for traveling. Norbert
  • The small independent businesses may cost a bit more than the high street but the care, talk and confidence given by good instruction and care is priceless. Jeremy
  • An ordinary professional knife, even if it’s not that expensive, will be a worthwhile instrument as long as you pay enough attention to it. Sergey and Ivan
  • A good knife is a good thing. A blunt knife is not. Jeremy
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