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Serrated Steak Knives in Restaurants

Serrated Steak Knives in Restaurants
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  • Serrated Steak Knives in Restaurants

    Post #1 - September 20th, 2018, 3:02 pm
    Post #1 - September 20th, 2018, 3:02 pm Post #1 - September 20th, 2018, 3:02 pm
    Moved from Le Bouchon thread so as not to derail.


    ronnie_suburban wrote:How were the steak knives?

    Slow pitch from Ronnie!

    Shitty serrated steak knives in restaurants, especially with quality beef, is irksome to me. Serrated knives tend to shred, well sharpened non-serrated cut clean.

    What set me off is a recent meal at Stefani Prime, the newish steakhouse in the old KowKow space, which serves a pretty decent steak. I was there last week with Ellen and Jan & John from Houston who were staying over. They have massive big-ass serrated dull signature Stefani Prime steak knives that irked me to the extent I mentioned it to the server and was rewarded with the ~look~ from my wife.

    Flash forward a couple of days to Le Bouchon, we went with J & J for half price wine Monday, while we did not have it a few tables around us got the Cote de Boeuf, just mentioned above. Le Bouchon also had serrated steak knives, better quality than Stefani, still . . .

    This is my new hashtag cause, #noserratedsteakknives (if you can think of a catchier hashtag I'm all ears)

    The impetus for this was an Eater video with the fellows from The Meat Hook in Brooklyn. They visit their beef farmer/supplier and taste 3 ages of cow, up to 15-years. When they cut the three cooked steaks it was like they were sawing wood.

    Taste wise their reaction to the older animals had me wondering where one might source such a thing locally. -----> Link

    /rant
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #2 - September 20th, 2018, 3:17 pm
    Post #2 - September 20th, 2018, 3:17 pm Post #2 - September 20th, 2018, 3:17 pm
    This reminds me of when I went to Steven Raichlen's BBQ University and every knife in the whole place was frustratingly and dangerously dull. The irony of being in such a manufacturer-sponsored setting and having substandard tools was notable.

    I felt the same way when I watched the video you linked. Here were these "experts" tearing their precious steaks apart with a knife that even a desperate inmate would have refused.

    If you're going to serve a bad-ass piece of meat, please provide the customer with the proper tools to enjoy it. On more than one occasion I've deployed my pocket knife in such situations because it was a superior tool to what the establishment could provide.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #3 - September 20th, 2018, 3:52 pm
    Post #3 - September 20th, 2018, 3:52 pm Post #3 - September 20th, 2018, 3:52 pm
    Serrated Steak Knives? I HATE THEM!

    What is their purpose, other than to insult perfectly good meat?
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #4 - September 20th, 2018, 5:16 pm
    Post #4 - September 20th, 2018, 5:16 pm Post #4 - September 20th, 2018, 5:16 pm
    I received a set of serrated knives from much loved friends. I use them and remember them so fondly each time I use my knives. But yeah, agreed.
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #5 - September 21st, 2018, 7:21 am
    Post #5 - September 21st, 2018, 7:21 am Post #5 - September 21st, 2018, 7:21 am
    leek wrote:I received a set of serrated knives from much loved friends. I use them and remember them so fondly each time I use my knives. But yeah, agreed.

    I think I use my serrated steak knives more often for slicing tomatoes than anything else.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #6 - September 22nd, 2018, 9:55 pm
    Post #6 - September 22nd, 2018, 9:55 pm Post #6 - September 22nd, 2018, 9:55 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:On more than one occasion I've deployed my pocket knife in such situations because it was a superior tool to what the establishment could provide.

    Or better yet ...
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #7 - September 22nd, 2018, 11:11 pm
    Post #7 - September 22nd, 2018, 11:11 pm Post #7 - September 22nd, 2018, 11:11 pm
    Katie wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:On more than one occasion I've deployed my pocket knife in such situations because it was a superior tool to what the establishment could provide.

    Or better yet ...

    I do have one of those . . .

    Image
    Non-Serrated Folding Knife from Arpège

    . . . which I was given at my visit to Arpège in 2012. It's a prized possession but having no clip, it's kind of tough to carry around every day.

    =R=

    ...and yes, I realize this might be the epitomatic first-world problem! :oops:
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #8 - September 24th, 2018, 1:17 pm
    Post #8 - September 24th, 2018, 1:17 pm Post #8 - September 24th, 2018, 1:17 pm
    I had no idea there was such controversy about serrated knives. I like them. Kenji of Serious Eats does, too. That's good enough for me. What are you guys doing with your knives that is rendering a piece of steak torn to pieces after using a serrated knife?
  • Post #9 - September 24th, 2018, 1:19 pm
    Post #9 - September 24th, 2018, 1:19 pm Post #9 - September 24th, 2018, 1:19 pm
    Binko wrote:I had no idea there was such controversy about serrated knives. I like them. Kenji of Serious Eats does, too. That's good enough for me. What are you guys doing with your knives that is rendering a piece of steak torn to pieces after using a serrated knife?

    Not us. Watch the video Gary linked above.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #10 - September 24th, 2018, 2:19 pm
    Post #10 - September 24th, 2018, 2:19 pm Post #10 - September 24th, 2018, 2:19 pm
    Binko wrote:I had no idea there was such controversy about serrated knives. I like them. Kenji of Serious Eats does, too. That's good enough for me.

    While I like/adore/worship Kenji as much if not more than the next fellow this is one instance where I disagree.

    J. Kenji López-Alt
    Serrated knives are the way to go. It's true that as some reviews have pointed out, a serrated edge will cut meat into sightly more ragged bites than a sharp straight edge will. But you know what? Who gives a &*%$!

    Who give a fuck? Me, I give a fuck!
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #11 - September 24th, 2018, 2:24 pm
    Post #11 - September 24th, 2018, 2:24 pm Post #11 - September 24th, 2018, 2:24 pm
    G Wiv wrote:Who give a fuck? Me, I give a fuck!

    Yeah, I do too. I've made enough Kenji recipes that have clunked to know that he's fallible.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #12 - September 24th, 2018, 3:47 pm
    Post #12 - September 24th, 2018, 3:47 pm Post #12 - September 24th, 2018, 3:47 pm
    I do enjoy the passion here! :lol:
  • Post #13 - September 25th, 2018, 9:40 am
    Post #13 - September 25th, 2018, 9:40 am Post #13 - September 25th, 2018, 9:40 am
    Now I am going to have to do a side by side test. I have never had an issue with serrated steak knives. To me it is primarily an issue of sharpness. My best steak knives are a set of laguiole serrated knives, and they are also my sharpest. I have never had a tearing problem with them.

    -Will
  • Post #14 - September 25th, 2018, 9:44 am
    Post #14 - September 25th, 2018, 9:44 am Post #14 - September 25th, 2018, 9:44 am
    WillG wrote:Now I am going to have to do a side by side test. I have never had an issue with serrated steak knives. To me it is primarily an issue of sharpness. My best steak knives are a set of laguiole serrated knives, and they are also my sharpest. I have never had a tearing problem with them.

    -Will

    I'm definitely not sitting next to you at Thursday's lunch. 8)
    "At a formal dinner party, the person nearest death should always be seated closest to the bathroom." George Carlin
  • Post #15 - September 25th, 2018, 10:23 am
    Post #15 - September 25th, 2018, 10:23 am Post #15 - September 25th, 2018, 10:23 am
    The Other Dr. Gale and I differ on this. She likes her serrated knives for a chop or a steak; me, not. So we solve the problem exactly as we should: we've got a set of nice Zwilling serrated knives for her, and a set of Chicago Cutlery steel steak knives for me. Works just fine. Peace in the family.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #16 - September 25th, 2018, 12:43 pm
    Post #16 - September 25th, 2018, 12:43 pm Post #16 - September 25th, 2018, 12:43 pm
    Compromise and sensibility? You can't do that here - this is the internet!
  • Post #17 - September 25th, 2018, 1:45 pm
    Post #17 - September 25th, 2018, 1:45 pm Post #17 - September 25th, 2018, 1:45 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    Binko wrote:I had no idea there was such controversy about serrated knives. I like them. Kenji of Serious Eats does, too. That's good enough for me. What are you guys doing with your knives that is rendering a piece of steak torn to pieces after using a serrated knife?

    Not us. Watch the video Gary linked above.


    I didn't see the sawing - to boot, I am not convinced that's a serrated knife!
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #18 - September 25th, 2018, 2:08 pm
    Post #18 - September 25th, 2018, 2:08 pm Post #18 - September 25th, 2018, 2:08 pm
    leek wrote:I didn't see the sawing - to boot, I am not convinced that's a serrated knife!

    Ha, are you from Missouri
    3:49 or any of the three times they cut the steaks
    -----> Link
    SteakKnife3.jpg Serrated Knife from Eater Video
    Last edited by G Wiv on September 25th, 2018, 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #19 - September 25th, 2018, 2:39 pm
    Post #19 - September 25th, 2018, 2:39 pm Post #19 - September 25th, 2018, 2:39 pm
    Each cutting finishes with a rip/tear away at the bottom of the slice. It's not a smooth finish to the cutting, clearly.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #20 - September 25th, 2018, 2:56 pm
    Post #20 - September 25th, 2018, 2:56 pm Post #20 - September 25th, 2018, 2:56 pm
    Both restaurant steaks referenced above were served for two, cut table-side with a serrated knife and presented to the customer. Also, I almost never cook a steak for one person at home. I get better control with thicker cuts, be it grill, pan or saute/finish in oven. This means, same as when a restaurant serves a pricey steak for two, its cut before being presented, not simply cut and shoved in ones pie-hole as Kenji implied.

    I've spent the last decade (plus) as a professional chef, worked hard on my skill set, including plating and presentation, firmly believe one also eats with their eyes. I would no more serve raggedy-assed shredded slices of beef to my wife than I would to a customer.

    At home steaks for two, three etc get cut on a cutting board, often served from said cutting board.

    SteakKnife4.jpg Properly cut and served steak. #homecooking
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #21 - September 25th, 2018, 11:26 pm
    Post #21 - September 25th, 2018, 11:26 pm Post #21 - September 25th, 2018, 11:26 pm
    APL Restaurant jumped to the top of my Must Try Los Angeles list!

    The choice of knife might seem like a tertiary detail when designing a steak house, but not for someone who has built a gigantic dry-aging room in his restaurant’s basement and sources prime cuts from the country’s most revered cattle ranches. “The knife is the last point of contact. It completely affects the experience,” Lang says. “There’s this cow that’s been raised for almost two years, then butchered, and aged, and cooked, and you blow it at the last minute by tearing the steak with a crappy knife.”

    Picture of APL steak knife on Instagram ---> Instagram

    The space is replete with a world-class wine and cocktail program, a take-out counter for daytime lunch offerings, and a subterranean dry-aging room in the underbelly of the restaurant. Not to overlook the additional mastery of Adam Perry Lang’s custom-forged knives at APL Restaurant, where metal and heat come together to create the perfect cutting instrument, both in form and function. Knife-making has been a big part of the journey toward the opening his first L.A. restaurant. The 143-seat restaurant is situated in Hollywood’s historic Taft Building.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #22 - September 29th, 2018, 10:40 pm
    Post #22 - September 29th, 2018, 10:40 pm Post #22 - September 29th, 2018, 10:40 pm
    Recent dinner at S.K.Y. (report here), this well-curated, non-serrated knife was most definitely a portent of things to come . . .

    Image
    Steak Knife @ S.K.Y. - 18.0928

    =R=

    S.K.Y.
    1239 W 18th St
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 846-1077
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #23 - September 29th, 2018, 11:39 pm
    Post #23 - September 29th, 2018, 11:39 pm Post #23 - September 29th, 2018, 11:39 pm
    Hi,

    Since restaurants and hotels are pilfered by clients. I wonder if these will be replaced at the same level or they will find another source over time.

    Certainly learned a lot of about steak knives this week. I will admit our household has the type that tear.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #24 - September 30th, 2018, 1:34 am
    Post #24 - September 30th, 2018, 1:34 am Post #24 - September 30th, 2018, 1:34 am
    Cathy2 wrote:Hi,

    Since restaurants and hotels are pilfered by clients. I wonder if these will be replaced at the same level or they will find another source over time.

    Certainly learned a lot of about steak knives this week. I will admit our household has the type that tear.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    I do believe theft, by customers and staff, is the reason places occasionally choose lesser options when it comes to items like steak knives, etc.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #25 - September 30th, 2018, 10:20 am
    Post #25 - September 30th, 2018, 10:20 am Post #25 - September 30th, 2018, 10:20 am
    Here's a good article about a Hong Kong restaurant that offers customers a selection of 10 different knives. And another.
  • Post #26 - September 30th, 2018, 12:31 pm
    Post #26 - September 30th, 2018, 12:31 pm Post #26 - September 30th, 2018, 12:31 pm
    There are plenty of fake Laguiole knives out there. Anyone anywhere in the world can stamp "Laguiole" onto a blade, attach a metal bee and do a few other things to make a $10 knife look like a $100+ knife. Laguiole is a generic name for the model that originates from the village of Laguiole. The name Laguiole is not protected. If it's serrated, it's a fake. If it's not serrated, it could still very well be a fake; it's just more difficult to tell.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #27 - September 30th, 2018, 12:49 pm
    Post #27 - September 30th, 2018, 12:49 pm Post #27 - September 30th, 2018, 12:49 pm
    My Laguiole knives look the same as Ronnies picture, Jean Dubost maker. I consider that to be serrated, though it is a different kind of serration. It is not like a serrated bread knife, but still has serrations, though they are separated by lots of tiny serrations. Katie, are you saying that all legit laguiole knives have a solid flat blade? My set has an "Authenticity Certificate."

    -Will
  • Post #28 - September 30th, 2018, 12:58 pm
    Post #28 - September 30th, 2018, 12:58 pm Post #28 - September 30th, 2018, 12:58 pm
    Reading the article that Katie linked, I see that mine are definitely fakes......they certainly didnt cost several hundred dollars per knife, but so is the one in Ronnies picture. I still think it is a great steak knife, whether or not what is on it counts as being serrated.

    -Will
  • Post #29 - September 30th, 2018, 2:41 pm
    Post #29 - September 30th, 2018, 2:41 pm Post #29 - September 30th, 2018, 2:41 pm
    WillG wrote:Reading the article that Katie linked, I see that mine are definitely fakes......they certainly didnt cost several hundred dollars per knife, but so is the one in Ronnies picture. I still think it is a great steak knife, whether or not what is on it counts as being serrated.

    -Will

    Yeah, I own some that are fake, too. I purchased them at the Farmers Market in L.A. (3rd & Fairfax) and they're pretty awful. The one from S.K.Y. definitely had micro-serrations, which I don't put in the same category as the ones that, I presume, caused Gary to go ballistic and start this thread. :lol:

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #30 - September 30th, 2018, 2:44 pm
    Post #30 - September 30th, 2018, 2:44 pm Post #30 - September 30th, 2018, 2:44 pm
    Will, which knife? Ronnie posted pictures of two knives. The Arpège is an Opinel (about 12-images down) not a Laguiole, fake or otherwise. The knife from S.K.Y. is most likely a French Laguiole but hard to tell from a picture.

    For $15 one can purchase a classic folding carbon steel Opinel #8 with a thin blade well suited to cutting steak, paper, string, packing boxes etc. Sharp out of the box and easy to keep sharp. An Opinel that looks like the Arpège Ronnie posted is $30, #N010, at Knife Center, a reputable source of knives on the Internet.

    Next time I go to a steak house I plan on putting my carbon steel Opinel #8 or #9 in my pocket and trying to ignore the ~look~ I get from the bride.

    Edit after seeing Ronnie's recent post. I'm not wild about micro-serrations but those are simply scowl worthy not turnoverthetable and run around the restaurant screaming worthy.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow

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