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Global G-48 7" Hollow Edge Santoku
Japanese Kitchen Knife Review

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G-48
7" Santoku Knife

The main reason I got this knife was its Granton edge. In case you don't know, Granton edge refers to scalloped recessions on the edge. They're designed to both, reduce the drag during cutting and prevent slices sticking to the blade. I've used another Granton edged santoku from Henckel for short period of time. It wasn't mine, I was given that knife to sharpen, so I had a chance to evaluate it as well. Anyway, I got it back in march, 2006. It has served me well since then until it was retired in June, 2008. Compared to Henckel offering in the same league of knives G-48 one was simply better knife. Fit and finish are better and scalloping is done more evenly and doesn't come too close to the edge which was a problem with Henckel, that's clearly visible on this photo. Overall, it's a better knife compared to Henckel, except costs twice as much.

Blade

- I have handled and reviewed a lot of santoku knives in my knife collecting years and this one(Global G-48) has one of the most un-santoku-ish blade geometry to be honest. Way too pointy for a santoku, but it is still referred as a santoku and on top of that, there isn't much of the belly to consider it a gyuto, or a chef's knife equivalent anyway. 177.80mm(7") long lade is pretty much as big as santokus get, at least those made by knife companies. Sure, you can have a custom santoku made by a knife maker, but good luck finding a bigger one in stores. I haven't ever seen longer than 7" for years, and I do see/research a lot of knives, besides hanging out on knife related forums. Anyhow, the pointy tip was not a problem for me during its use, can't say it was helping me with anything either, the knife was used for vegetable chopping and that was about it. Although, now, in retrospect, I'm not so sure pointy santokus make much sense. If you want the pointy tip, then why not go with a chef's knife? At least, the blade length will not be a problem, if you happen to want something longer than 7".

Steel

- The steel is the CROMOVA 18 used by Global for all their knives as far as I am concerned. I've already commented regarding this steel in Global GF-33 Forged Chef's knife review and in Fallkniven White Whale review. Follow the links to see the info regarding CROMOVA 18.

Usage

- G-48 is a santoku and I was using it as such for all the time I've owned it. Considering that I didn't use Global G-33 Chef's knife for vegetable chopping, this santoku was my main vegetable knife for over 2 years. Overall, I was pretty happy how it performed, but that was before I have discovered the world or true Japanese kitchen knives. Had I known their performance back then, I wouldn't be so happy ;) Although, in a short time I found out that Fallkniven K-2 santoku which was also in my kitchen, was performing better because it had better steel at higher hardness, 59HRC vs. 56-58 on G-48. Yes, it was noticeable, even it's just one point it's something that clearly shows during the use over time. Global santoku needed sharpening more frequently and edge rolls were more frequent on G-48 compared to K-2. I do use my knives very carefully, but still I can't avoid rolls, besides every once in a while guests or family members would use G-48 or K-2 on big parties, and every time after those I've had bunch of rolls on Global santoku. It's mainly due to the thin edge I put on it, since I was sharpening that knife for my use pattern. Softer steel just can't support the thin edge as hard one can, hence the rolling.

As for the Granton edge, well I have mixed feelings about it. It indeed improves knife usability in general, but overall I think they're overrated. May be, I was expecting too much from them. As far as reducing the drag goes, I didn't notice any significant reduction, sharp edge is far more important. As for the food slices sticking less the blade, well, G-48 was clearly better compared to K-2 in that area and I think Teflon coating used on K-2 is at fault here. Because it's so smooth and slippery thin slices stick to it like glued. Tomatoes, onions, pineapple, potatoes, you name it. For that reason I've ended up using G-48 more often when I was pressed for time during food preparation. if not I'd still use K-2 because it was a better cutter and I felt more confident with it.

Conclusions

- I don't have much to add to the above. Overall, it's a good knife, but too soft for my taste. If you are into hard, high performance knives, this one isn't for you. Just like other Globals, it's too soft to support thin, high performance edge. It's much closer to standard European kitchen knives in that department than Japanese kitchen knvies. On the other hand, if you don't get too picky about your knife sharpness and don't feel like spending time on maintenance go for it, thicker edge will hold longer, not that it'll cut better, but you'll feel knife lasts you longer ;) But, you do know you have to sharpen it eventually.

Specifications:

  • Blade - 177.80mm(7")
  • Thickness - 3.17mm
  • OAL - 304.80mm(12")
  • Steel - CROMOVA 18 56-58HRC
  • Handle - Stainless Steel
  • Acquired - 03/2006 Price - 95.00$

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Last updated - 09/01/11