For chef's who prefer the extra heft and stiffness of forged blades this three knife set from Wusthof of Solingen, Germany, is a good first step towards a complete professional quality knife set. The paring, utility, and chef's knives here can cover all but the heaviest chopping work, and will still be useful when your selection expands.
Many good knives today feature stamped steel blades of a different character than these old style Wusthof products. With forged bolsters, stiff blades, and sturdy full tang riveted slab handles, these knives can stand up to prying and twisting stresses other styles can't tolerate. Even for a light task like peeling potatoes, a paring knife with a strong blade is easier to control, skimming under the skin accurately where a thinner blade would flex and wander.
It's always a trade off, with both styles being better for some purposes, but when you need knives to cover all the chores this trio of strong blades is a very reasonable option. The chef's knife style has often been used for both fine mincing and heavier chopping (with the rear edge of the blade). The utility knife is useful for boning meat, fish, and poultry as well as for quick slicing of tomatoes, vegetables and fruit.
The set is machine washable, but fares better in terms of edge retention and polish if you wash and dry them by hand. Hand honed at the factory, upkeep is simple, requiring regular touchups with a sharpening steel. The longer you use them, the better they get.
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