Of the many “block sets” on the market, this is one of the few which comes close to getting it right. Refreshingly, it offers only a few of the essentials and very little filler.
This isn’t a professional grade set, nor even a set aimed at the accomplished home cook. This set is aimed right at the extremely value conscious and/or the young home cook just starting out in his or her own place. Undeniably, on the surface, this is a fine value, offering a nice selection of knives at a very reasonable price. However, the seemingly generous lifetime warranty tells the prospective knife buyer all that is necessary about these knives. A lifetime warranty on a set of knives where the average retail cost per knife is a little more than five dollars tells you that the company views these knives as essentially disposable knives and can replace them at will. The steel used on knives at this pricepoint is of questionable quality. Don’t expect the blade to take or be able to hold a particularly fine edge, although the stamped construction will undoubtedly help the overall performance by virtue of the thin blade geometry.
The block set as a sales tool appeals to the idea that you can simply buy one set and never have to think about the types of knives you might really need and use. It also appeals to the all too human desire to get a good value when you make a purchase.
Although there are a few block sets on the market which deliver on these ideas, this isn’t one of them. Unfortunately, like the all too common “Super Duper Extra Giant Value Meals” offered by the fast food chains, this one is long on perceived value and short on substance.
My best advice to the budget conscious cook would be to skip this set and spend that money on one or two value oriented knives like a cooks knife and a parer or bread knife from one of the utilitarian makers like Forschner or save a few more pennies and buy something a little bit nicer that will offer better performance.
Check out our Guide to budget kitchen knives for more on how to choose inexpensive kitchen knives.
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[phpbay]chicago block set 10, 2[/phpbay]