Ever since I first started cooking seriously 25 years ago I discovered how important good knives were to the hobby...Back then I couldnt afford to get decent ones so I begged and got xmas gifts and such.
I went through Henkels, Wustoff and then I discovered Kyocera Ceramic and I went nuts on those...at the time you couldnt re sharpen them you had to return them to the head us office....but one by one the started chipping and breaking...bummer when they were new they were soooooooo sharp it was scary. Next stop...Mac knives.....still great just expensive...then I stumbled upon Shun...Wow this was the knife for me! I bought them as xmas gifts 2010 and bought several for myself.... I'm over it...or "Why I have decideed to sell Messermeister knives"
Here is a pic of what happened to many of mine and this one is my daughter in law who handed me and asked if I could get these notches out.....
Before anyone jump at me on this...Im sure that she could have taken better care...not all of them do this...but
The secret to the super sharpness is a alloy steel that is super hard and then extra hardened....you cannot get a shun or others made with this material sharp as new ...even with an apex....The upside is a super sharp start...the downside is that the harder the steel the more brittle it is at the super thin cutting edge....brittle=chips and chunks.
Now to the german steel...it is softer....it is nearly as sharp at the outset but it does not
have the propensity to chip...it will dent and bend if you really abuse it...but here is where the good part is. With a softer steel you can resharpen and bring it to an even sharper than new..just takes regular maintenance.
The Messermeister knives are in three levels. The top of the line is the finest german steel you can get. The middle line is killer and the low line competes very favorably with Forschner and victorionox...(those two are made in the same factory)
I still use some of my Shuns...I am super careful....but in my comp bag is Messermeister