December 02, 2020 3 min read
A 150mm petty knife, to me, is the perfect companion to your larger chef’s knife. They are meant to knock off tasks that a chef’s knives are too large to do comfortably. Whether peeling fruit, trimming silver skin from a whole pork loin, or just slicing garlic a la Paulie in Goodfellas, this knife is up for the challenge. Heck, I’ve even seen these used by cooks as mini sujihikis while working on the line in a cramped kitchen. Here is a list of my favorite 150mm pettys, plus I’ll tell you why they rank so highly with me.
Masashi-san’s knives always make it into my top 5. Ever since meeting him, I’ve had a soft spot for his work. It doesn’t hurt that he’s incredibly talented and makes some of the sharpest blades we carry. What I like most about his petty knives is that contrary to his chef’s knives, he makes them super light. They feel like you’re working with a razor-sharp feather. His pettys are definitely a bit taller than most which makes them great for chopping and slicing, but since they’re so light and have a very fine point they are equally useful for in-hand work and fine details.
I couldn’t pick just one line from Masashi, because they’re all amazing. Sue me.
These guys are great for someone who wants a knife with a bit more “heft” to it. Both are made of VG10 stainless steel so they get a great edge, are easy to sharpen, but are very durable compared to other Japanese knives. You can work around bones and cartilage without breaking a sweat, just don’t cut right through it! They have a very thin profile that makes getting into tighter areas easier, perfect for tasks like frenching a rack of lamb or “suprême-ing” a citrus fruit. They’re great for both home cooks and professionals and come in either a migaki finish or a tsuchime-kurouchi finish. Or as I say, cool and extra cool.
This is the pageant-winner of the group. From a stunning desert ironwood handle, to a sleek brass ferrule and a polished tsuchime finish, this knife really has all the bells and whistles. Not just a pretty face, it also happens to be one of the top performing knives we carry. The Masakage Zero petty is made of super blue carbon steel with stainless steel cladding which means it needs to be kept dry and can chip a little more easily, but it stays sharp for ages. This knife is like a Ferrari; beautiful on the highway, just don’t take it down a dirt road.
This might be the tallest 150mm petty in the shop. It has a very fine point which makes it a great utility blade. Good for chopping fingerling potatoes, slicing a few scallops or trimming a head of broccoli, this knife can really do it all.
Alright, so maybe it’s not a full 150mm petty, but don’t judge a book by its cover. This knife can ball just as hard as the rest. Its extra height keeps your knuckles clear of your cutting board, while the slightly shorter blade is easier to use in-hand. The steel has a higher carbon content which requires a little extra care, but that extra carbon allows it to get crazy sharp. Plus, look at how sexy this knife is. Just look at it.
I think the 150mm petty is a shape that gets a bit of a bad rap. A lot of folks seem to think it is too big for their needs. Even I used to think so, once upon a time. Once I figured out that I could use one as a mini slicer, a meat trimmer and even to take apart a whole chicken, I immediately changed my tune. Now I love my 150mm petty, and I’m sure it will quickly become one of your favourite knives too!
Another ex-chef turned professional Knife Nerd, Alex hails from the metropolis of Trenton. His career in the kitchen started at The Niagara Food & Wine Institute and finished at Union Local: 613 with our very own Lordy. Just ask him about the time Chris drank a bottle of honey for $5…
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