A favorite and a classic – you can’t go wrong with this Henckel’s set!
I purchased my first Henckels knife when I was in my early twenties as a birthday present for my sister’s boyfriend, who was a chef. I had never heard of them, and had not yet begun to have an interest in cooking and kitchen tools. But, as I took a look at this (way too, I thought) expensive knife I had purchased, even I could tell that it was expertly balanced for the hand; though I probably wouldn’t have expressed that way at that time.
Over the years, as I have accumulated Henckel’s knives for my own kitchen, that perfect balance has been a big part of what keeps me coming back. I’m a great cook, but I’ve never quite mastered that art of being a great chopper. So, a great knife, that feels balanced in my hand, is critical for me.
The Quality of Henckels
Henckels has long been known for making some of the best knives in the business. Though their higher end knife sets are moderately expensive, they are a brand that can be counted on for quality.
JA Henckels is the largest manufacturer of knives in the world, and they offer 12 different lines of knives. The company was started in Solingen Germany in 1731, so they have a long standing reputation for making great knives.
Most buyers find this line of knives to be very well balanced, though some people who have used it and used the Henckel’s Twin Cermax or Twin Select lines found this line to be slightly less well balanced. The Four Star set has a bit more weight at the back of the handle, which feels a little clumsy for some people. On the other hand, this is a very popular line, so there are also a lot of people who love the feel of the set.
Materials and Construction
Another great thing about all Henckel’s knives is the construction, and the Four Star set is no exception. Henckel constructs their knives with what is known as a “full rat tail tang” (I know, sounds gross for a kitchen tool, but bear with me). This means that the mechanism that attaches the blade to the handle runs deep into the handle of the knife. Knives with this type of construction are much more durable than a knife whose blade is simply attached to the handle at the base or just a few inches into the base.
When a knife is constructed like these Henckel’s knives, they’re not going to break off at the blade like cheaper knives. They last for an incredibly long time. I’ve actually never replaced any Henckel’s knife I’ve purchased. I’ve simply added to my collection over time. The full tang on these knives also contributes to that great balance. The handles are made from high impact polypropylene. The black handles keep their color and don’t break.
Have you ever had a knife with a stained blade? If so, you know what I mean when I say that I inevitably end up throwing those knives away because no matter what I do, they just don’t look clean. You never have to worry about that with a Henckel’s knife. The blades just don’t stain. They are made from ice molded high carbon steel that keeps true color and keeps a sharp edge for a long time. In fact, if you’ve been using cheap knives, be very careful when you get your first Henckel’s. It’s going to be very sharp!
A Complete Kitchen Set
We reviewed the 9 piece set, in it you get:
- 2 3/4-inch peeler
- 3- inch parer
- 5 inch serrated utility knife
- 5-inch hollow edge santoku (which you’ll use for everything)
- 8-inch Chef’s knife
- 8-inch bread knife
- 9 inch steel knife
- kitchen shears
- wooden storage block
This set has a good mix of knives for the new user. I think this makes a great wedding gift or college graduation gift because it outfits a new home with all the essential kitchen knives for a decent price. You really don’t need any other knives for cooking if you have this set. Of course, once you’ve had a few Henckel’s knives, it’s pretty certain that you’ll want to add to your set.
Of course, all knives lose their edge eventually, so you do need a good sharpener. Henckel’s makes a great one, and I’ve seen some specials where you get the knife sharpener for free if you buy a full set of knives. That’s a great deal, and with a great Henckel’s sharpener, you can keep those knives as sharp as they were out of the box.
Note: The Four Star line comes in several options – 7, 8 or 9 pieces are the most popular. There is also a very nice 18 piece set that includes 8 steak knives.
Can they go in the dishwasher?
Henckel’s lists these knives as dishwasher safe. And, they are, from the standpoint that they won’t warp or melt if you wash them in the dishwasher. However, I don’t (and neither does Henckel’s) recommend putting any good cutlery in the dishwasher, ever.
Some users of these knives also reported that the black handles got a little bit of a milky finish to them when they were washed in the dishwasher. Another good reason to avoid it.
Cutlery You Can Feel Good About Owning
You really can’t go wrong with any set of Henckel’s cutlery. Most of their products offer a lifetime warranty. Save your receipt, though it’s likely you’ll never need it. The way that Henckel’s prefers to handle warranty issues is for you to return the knife to the retailer where you bought it, rather than to Henckel’s. Then the retailer gives you a replacement, and handles the transfer with Henckel’s.
All in all this is a great set of knives from one of the world’s best knife manufacturers. I have never regretted the money I spent to buy any Henckel’s product. If you’re balking at the price, consider it an investment in your kitchen, because you’ll likely never have to replace any knife you buy from Henckel’s.
What others are saying:
My husband got me these knives for Christmas and I LOVE them.
They were very much worth the money.
Great grip and incredible cutting edge!
No comparison to any knife set I’ve had so far and the price is unbeatable.
The knives themselves are GREAT — nice weight, easy to hold, a pleasure to use.
How much should I expect to pay?
This particular set of knives is part of the Four Star line. Overall the Four Star line is fairly moderately priced. This set of nine knives is about $220 on Amazon which is the best price we’ve found. It is actually about the same price these knives carried a few years ago so they hold their value well.
Where can I buy this Henckels 9pc Knife set?
See prices on other Henckels Four Star sets: