It is a fact that many knives come with a high price tag. Just check out the prices of Wusthof and some of the chef’s knives and you will know how high the price is.
Depending on the quantity of food you tend to cook, it is likely to be difficult to justify your idea of investing hundreds of dollars in an upscale knife pack or knives made up of high-carbon steel.
No matter how effectively the online portals convince you, there is no need for a fancy knife set for cutting different veggies and fruits. What you only need is a set of some good knives that perform well and are within your budget regardless of the level of experience you have.
One such knife to consider is a Ginsu knife. Although a fancy, upscale knife is likely to facilitate a few advanced cutting techniques, an affordable knife such as a Ginsu is what a skilled chef needs to get started with.
While many makers provide a variety of good affordable knives, no brand seems to beat Ginsu. Yes, Ginsu is originally a brand name. For many, it is perhaps the favorite brand when it is a matter of investing in effective but cheap knives.
Unlike other makers, Ginsu makes reasonably high-quality knives that are available at unbelievably low prices. They are cost-effective options to have in your full knife block meant for your kitchen. This post is dedicated to sharing facts about this knife so that you know what you are investing in is worth your kitchen or not.
Overview of Ginsu Knives
A Ginsu knife typically features a serrated steel blade and a plastic handle for fulfilling the intended expectations when in the kitchen. What distinguishes it from other knives is that it is made using surgical stainless steel.
This type of steel is known for its ability to last for years, keep dullness away, and resist rust permanently. Thus, you get a blade of ultimate quality.
Another unique aspect of a Ginsu knife is that it is highly practical to use. These knives act as reliable cutlery tools for servicing various guests or big groups on different occasions with ease and efficiency.
Further, it is easy to maintain and clean them, as you can do so using a dishwasher. Due to their durability and high-quality build, Ginsu knives are sold with a lifetime guarantee.
A Ginsu knife is chiefly made for carving with a breeze. You may have seen it in big buffets, as the brand is admired for its carving knife. A Ginsu knife is not just the best tool for carving but also for serving, as it comes with a fork at the tip.
Although simple, it is the practical design that appeals to both home cooks and professional chefs. You can expect a dish with perfectly even slices served with an elite gourmet service with this knife.
For many, a Ginsu acts as the only knife needed throughout the lifespan of your culinary era. It is certainly the most versatile tool widely used in gourmet kitchens across the globe apart from the kitchens in homes.
With it, your prep work becomes easy. You can slice through a tin or hammer and yet be the witness to its intact sharp blade every time you use it. You can also easily slice a piece of fresh bread or a ripe tomato and cut other items.
Another most commendable aspect of a Ginsu knife is that it needs no sharpening. The brand is a proud peddler of the ‘no-sharpening idea’, which is perhaps the most wanted benefit but comes with its cons as well. The serrated edges of these knives are seriously challenging when it comes to sharpening them.
Due to the rolling design, it is tough to sharpen the Ginsu knives even with a proper sharpener, patience, and time. Fortunately, they perform well without the need of sharpening them.
History of Ginsu Knives
Ginsu knives first came into focus during the late 1970s when an array of infomercials showed them cutting through nails, cans, and radiator hoses. They were also shown to cut tomatoes to make their thin slices that several other knives could not imitate.
A Ginsu knife was formerly known as Quikut, as it was created by the Scott Fetzer company’s Quikut section. Since this original design had no flair, Arthur Schiff, Barry Becher, and Ed Valenti introduced a name that referred to the extraordinary sharpness and longevity of the Samurai swords.
This name was Ginsu and was introduced to make every other knife obsolete. The subsequent informercials imitated the direct marketing techniques of fair hawkers in the 1960s. In the late 1970s, the ads went universal on U.S. TV.
The ads asked, “How much would you pay? Don’t answer!”, which appealed viewers to “Call now! Operators are standing by!”. It also conveyed, “But wait! There’s more!”, which even today is considered as a famous catchphrase. The Ginsu knives were promoted as the sharpest knives available in the market.
While Barry Becher named the knife as Ginsu, he later interpreted the word to mean “I never have to work again”. This is how the makers date back to more than 40 years as the designers of the most promoted and sharpest knives.
While branded by direct-response inventors, the Ginsu knives took no time in being popular amidst millions of American consumers due to the iconic ads. Though both proclaimed and booed, the knives became quite successful such that they are still among the loved consumer products.
Both the Ginsu and Quikut brands manufactured their products in Arkansas. Succeeding 1985, the Scott Fetzer’s Quikut and Douglas (makers of vacuum cleaners) operating units were merged. According to the 2013’s Consumer Reports, the Ginsu Chikara set was rated as the ‘Best Buy’ after comparing it with 50 other knife sets.
Reasons to Have the Best Ginsu Knives
If you are on a budget, it is tough to find a knife that is decent enough to be a part of your cutlery arsenal. Still, you can get one such knife without breaking the bank if you smartly look for it. This is something that Ginsu knives have proved. Here are some more reasons to choose their set for your cooking needs:
- Durability Blended with Affordability: Although the Ginsu brand is popular for manufacturing low-cost cutlery, it is critical to understand that not all cheap knives are worthy of your money. Their quality is simply short-lived. However, many Ginsu knife sets are not only inexpensive but also cost-efficient. In other words, they remain true to their price and promise of ensuring great quality despite being reasonably priced.
- Great Craftmanship as Well as Quality Ensuring Durability: Most Ginsu knives are of high quality. They come with sharp blades and cozy handles, proving themselves ideal for many specific purposes. They are also quite efficient, comfortable to grip, and sharp enough to appeal to professional chefs. Not only they boost your culinary skills without triggering any financial burden but also give you an enjoyable experience. The full tang design and stainless-steel build on all Ginsu knives make these tools durable.
- Razor-sharp Right Out of the Box: It is truly irritating to have and use a dull knife. Such a tool can also be dangerous, particularly if your nature is hasty and impatient. Investing in a Ginsu’s kitchen knife set means getting some of the finest, cost-effective tools that are incredibly sharp right out of the box. There is no need to further hone or maintain them, as they usually have a serrated structure with an ever-sharp edge. The overall kitchen experience with such a set is safer and easier than many other knives for any novice or an experienced chef.
- Beginner-friendly: Most Ginsu sets have all the basic knives to get started although they differ in terms of a number of items. In absence of any cutlery item, you may opt for any of these recommended sets to get started with your culinary journey.
- Forged: Ginsu knives are typically forged, which has better benefits than the stamped knives. The latter are created by stamping a big metal sheet, including a handle, and sharpening the blade finally. On the other hand, making a forged blade encompasses some special techniques to boost both sharpness and sturdiness. While stamped knives may be preferred when the priority is to hold an edge, the forged ones are still better. This is because they are not only chicer but also sturdier at a molecular level. It is also easy to sharpen these knives.
- Japanese Stainless-Steel Build: It is known that carbon is the toughest build material. Therefore high-carbon steel is commonly used in making knives and blades. This material is strong as well as hard, which indicates that knives made using it can hold their edge for a longer period than those made using Japanese stainless steel. The former knives are also extremely sharp. On the other hand, the Japanese stainless steel is tougher although not harder than the former steel material. This means that its knives are sharper. This is exactly what you can expect from Ginsu knives. As a rule, for cutting through various materials, these knives depend on their sharpness. However, the blades of high-carbon steel depend on their weight.
- Varieties: Ginsu knives are available in different sizes, shapes, and colors. The key differences exist in terms of the making process and the material.
So, now are you convinced to get a Ginsu knife? If yes, then now you may wonder which knife set or knife to take. Well, just as with any other cutlery item, it simply comes down to your likes and preferences.
Keep in mind that no single blade is ideal for everyone. This is because each knife has its blend of uses, pros, and cons. You will choose according to what you truly require and what you intend to let go of. Just know these points and you will easily get to the best Ginsu product.
Knives to Expect from Ginsu
As a brand, Ginsu provides knives in the form of a set. It manufactures the following types of knives:
- Original slicing and carving knife
- Slicing and carving knife made using Japanese stainless steel
- Boning knife made using Japanese stainless steel
- Japanese Chef knife
Top Ginsu Knives in the Market
|Top||Ginsu Essential Series 14-Piece Stainless Steel Serrated Knife Set||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu GES-KB-DS-006-2 04807DS Essential Series 6 Piece Steak Knife Set, Black||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu Gourmet Chikara Series Forged 12-Piece Japanese Steel Knife Set||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu 05134DS Original Carving Slicer, Black||See it on Amazon|
|Kitchen + Home Carving Bread Knife||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu KIS-KB-DS-001-5 Kiso Dishwasher Safe Paring Knife||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu GES-RD-DS-014-4 Essentials, 14 Piece, Red||See it on Amazon|
|Ginsu Essential Series 4-Piece Stainless Steel Steak Knives Set||See it on Amazon|
Sharpening a Ginsu Knife
While the Ginsu knives are not supposed to be sharpened in most situations, you can sharpen them when you feel the need to do so. Following are the steps for the same:
- You start by greasing the surface of your sharpening stone. For this, you can use either honing oil or water. Your choice will depend on the kind of stone in use.
- Now, angle the knife’s blade against the stone’s surface such that the knife’s edge is at its bevel angle with respect to the stone. This angle is the suggested angle for sharpening the chosen blade effectively. Thus, ensure that the set you choose comes with the bevel angles specified on its pack. Alternatively, you can also use Google to search for a suitable bevel angle for the set you brought.
- Move the blade across the stone from the handle to the tip.
- Glide the blade in this manner for up to 20 times.
- Flick the blade over and reperform the steps 2 to 4 for the other side. Repeat until you get the intended sharpness.
- Wipe any remaining oil from both the blade’s edge and stone using a cloth.
Regardless of the Ginsu knife you choose, you are ensured of quality craftsmanship, sharp blades, durable design, and balanced structure. Ginsu will undoubtedly prove a dependable companion in the most challenges you face in your culinary journey.
The most admirable part of Ginsu as a brand is that it is frank and transparent with their customers. It does not make false promises or promotions. You will not find statements such as knives that will remain sharp forever. Instead, they are just in their promotions to allow anyone to make an informed choice.
Hi, I am Jay. I am the creator of Knife Guides, your one-stop site for everything related to knives. I am a computer engineer by profession, knife aficionado by passion. Here I work with a group of people who’ve always had a passion for knives and blades. Over the years we’ve kind of become experts and decided to share our knowledge and ideas. I am also an avid hiker and enjoy offshore gamefishing.