Customer Reviews: Gunter Wilhelm Cutlery 250 Executive Chef 12-Piece Professional Knife Set with Wooden Storage Block
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on May 19, 2010
I purchased these knives at Costco for a screaming deal. The entire 12 piece knife set was $279 and the add-on 7 piece steak knife set was an additional $75. This includes:

* Carving Fork
* 10" Meat Carving slicer w/dimples
* 9" Offset Bread knife
* 10" Chef Knife
* 10" Boning Knife
* Butcher's Cleaver
* 7" Asian Cleaver with dimples
* 7" Santoku with dimples
* 3.5" Paring Knife
* 10" Diamond Steel
* 10" honing steel
* 6 Steak knives
* 2 Wooden Knife Blocks

They are made of German forged 440C steel at a Rockwell hardness rating above that of the comparable Henckels and Wusthof, which means it will hold a sharp edge longer than those brands.

I was skeptical at first but after handling them and actually trying them out in the store, I was convinced it was a great deal. Plus, Gunter Wilhelm has a 30 day money back guarantee and Costco has a lifetime money back guarantee, so how could I go wrong?

Other than these knives being higher in quality than the competition, and other than them being a lot cheaper than the competition, I was also sold on the fact that Gunter Wilhelm has a *lifetime* guarantee on their knives. Should one break, crack, bend, chip, split, etc. in the lifetime that you own it, they will send you a new one FREE of charge, EVEN IF IT'S YOUR OWN FAULT. Now how can you beat THAT?

I've used the knives for about 3 weeks now and look forward to every time I pull one of these knives out of the block. They feel great in your hands, are razor sharp, are well balanced and are a joy to use. Just be careful, because they really are razor sharp. I barely (accidentally) brushed up against one of the blades and instantly drew blood.

To keep them razor sharp, use the honing steel prior to use every time. Just a few passes on each side will suffice.

As for customer service, I've called twice so far with questions about the knives and to state that I love them. Never was anyone rude to me like the other reviewer here has written. Don't believe him. It's a quality company with a quality product and I'm so glad I made the decision to purchase these knives.

I'd recommend them to anyone seeking a quality knife set.
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on September 13, 2010
I purchased a Mini Santoku Gunter Wilhelm knife from Costco and it quickly became my favorite knife in the house. After many months of use, and some unintended trips through the dishwasher, the wood on the handle became swollen and extended slightly beyond the metal tang. One a subsequent trip to Costco, I purchased the Asian Cleaver and shared with the saleperson my slight disappointment about the first knife. He said he would replace it on the spot if I could bring it in. It was the last day of the show, so that didn't work out. I did however contact Gunter Wilhelm via email, sending customer service a few photos of the handle along with the narrative. The rep responded quickly saying they would be happy to send another to me, though recommended they be handwashed in the future.

I have to say, I was quite impressed that they did not insist on receiving the damaged knife before replacing it. They have a customer for life! I love these knives and staff is pretty nice too!
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on May 31, 2010
i've had this set for 2 years now..i'm very satisfied with quality and customer service.these knives are not toys but serious tools for someone who expects the best..i'm not a professional chef.i am an avid home cook. i look for the best quality not always the most popular.the first time i had a problem that needed customer service was when i first purchased the set.the wooden block was split.i called and they simply sent me a new questions asked.the second time was just 2 weeks ago.i wanted to order three additional knives.9"boning,10
'ham slicer and the offset breadknife.they were shipped immediately and the designs of these blades are actually better than the originals.paul hellman was a gentleman and 100%genuine.
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on April 8, 2011
Bought a Gunter Wilhelm Chinese Cleaver about 2 years ago. It's the first quality cooking cutlery I've owned, and for the first year it performed very well, used almost daily, sharpened maybe monthly, always a joy to use. Then I noticed a crack in the blade near the bolster. Called the company, got the boss, got my replacement knife immediately and with no hassle. The replacement is of equal quality to the original and still a joy to use. Intend to expand my collection.
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on October 10, 2013
I bought these knives at Costco for half the price they sell for on their own website. I read a lot of reviews before purchasing them. I did my research on the steel used to make the knives. What I discovered was that competing companies of similar quality does not even come close in price or the warranty that Gunter Wilhelm offers their cutlery at. Furthermore, the product receives high praise, but what few negative reviews by customers I've read was usually the result of their own ignorance.

Allow me to explain: the best chef knives in the world are of high carbon steel with little additives of other alloys, such as chromium (which creates stainless steel), thus making a blade of harder steel to hold a sharper edge for longer periods of use, but also is prone to break due to inflexibility and rust if left in water. The typical cheap house-hold knife has high amounts of chromium in them to make them truly stainless steel, but it compromises the hardness of the metal, making it a softer steel, thus the blades can't hold an edge and is dull after a few to several cuts. Professional chefs would not buy that crap. They will pay thousands of dollars for higher-end steel, and just have to take better care of their product. There is no perfect knife out there that will be flexible, be corrosive-free (by adding chromium and other alloys), while keeping its hardness for a sharper edge for longer periods of use (by leaving out additional alloys and keeping it mostly pure carbon steel). When purchasing knives, you are making a choice of compromise.

That is why when someone complains about this product rusting on them, it is usually due to their own ignorance of caring for their knives. Example, I read this one review of someone complaining about their knife rusting after hand washing it and setting it on a clean towel to dry. Well, the person failed to understand that it was left with water on it to rust it, instead of how they were suppose to hand dry it with a towel immediately as to leave no moisture on it, and put it away, right away, as I do.

Gunter Wilhelm uses 440C steel, with a Rockwell hardness rating of 59, which is mid-grade for high-end steel, in order to have some balance of hardness and a little corrosive resistance. Some of the most expensive Japanese chef knives out there, considered to being the best in the world, have a Rockwell hardness of 61, and is prone to chipping and breaking, with little to no corrosive resistance. Such knife sets will normally cost thousands of dollars.

I can tell you from personal experience that these knives are high quality. They were razor sharp straight out of the box. The first time I used my Santoku knife, I hand washed it, hand dried the blade on a clean towel in my open palm, moving it back and forth quickly to make the metal shiny, and ended up filleting the towel and damn near my fingers! Wow! You could not purchase any set of knives of this quality at this price from any other company. And as for the possibility of chipping or breaking, Gunter Wilhelm is the only company that backs their product with a life-time unlimited warranty. What that means is that if it rusts, cracks, chips, or breaks, even if it is your fault due to neglect or abuse (no other company offers this protection), they will replace it. You don't need a receipt, they have a unique patented design and label stamp on their product. Just contact their customer service and they'll take care of it.

My only advice to give you is if you do not want to be inconvenienced with the wait time of replacing a damaged blade, then educate yourself on the proper care of such quality cutlery. This includes to fully read the instructions and watch video tutorials on the use, sharpening, washing, and storing of the knives. If you do that, you will not be disappointed with the quality and experience that these knives will give you for the price you paid.
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on October 22, 2011
Like some others, we ran into these knives at COSTCO. I am not a professional chef. I am a home cooking enthusiast. I have really began to up my cooking skills, and it is time I got a "real" set of knives instead of finding "bargains" at Ross. The Wilhelm knives were going to be at COSTCO until Sunday, so my husband and I went home to do some research on knives. The other reviews I had found on these knives were top of the charts. I could not find any real bad reviews as far as the performance of the knives went. And you really cannot match the price they were selling at COSTCO. The sales rep at COSTCO was up front when I asked where these were made. Metal poured and forged in Germany, then sent off to China for polishing and finishing and assembly. I could really care less if these things were assembled in China. What isn't made or assembled over there? So I went back today and purchased the entire set, including the steak knife block. And how ingenious to hang the steak block from the main block?? I did find a rather large scratch-n-dent on one of the steak knives. But if you read the instructions that come with the knives, just send them photos in an email and it looks like they will replace it. If they don't, I'll be back to update my review. I will use the knives tonight and tomorrow, and the next day, etc... If there is anything wrong in the performance of these blades, I promise to amend this review. But I doubt you will be hearing back from me. And that is a good thing!
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on January 7, 2011
I had been looking for a professional knife set for about two years. Almost gave in,several times, and settled for purchasing a set in a local store. I kept going online, searching for something special, not knowing where to find it. Finally came upon the Gunter Wilhelm website and was pleasantly surprised. I called and spoke to a wonderful lady who informed me of the unconditional warranty. I ordered the knife set immediately and was soooo happy when they arrived. These knives are beautiful!!! I can't imagine a professional chef having a better set than these. I've had them a little over a year and they are amazing. Easy to use, easy to keep sharp and as for the warranty, here's my story. I use these knives every day. I opt to use these knives instead of using my food processor. One day I was chopping veggies and my sandoku slipped from my hand. It landed right on the tip and broke. I was so upset that I had ruined one of my knives and then I remembered what I was told about the warranty. I called and spoke to Paul, who told me not to worry and that he would replace the knife for free!! It is a wonderful thing to find a company that will stand behind their product like this. It was my fault that the knife broke. I don't know of another company that would do this for you. I Love them so much that I purchased two more sets at Xmas for my son and daughter. I would recommend these knives to everyone and believe me, I have. Please,don't hesitate, buy this product. You'll love them and you will never find nicer people to deal with or a better unconditional warranty. They have other products including an amazing cookware set. That will be my next purchase since I know how good their products are and what an amazing warranty they have.
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on July 21, 2011
I also got these Knives in Costco. i have them over 6 months now and they are still razor sharp. i am extremely satisfied and would sincerely recommend them to any budding chefs.

the Cleaver is great for opening coconuts and even chops frozen steaks with one blow. i am doing more cooking at home and have really good pots and pans and a final touch for me was to get bamboo chopping boards.

the whole goal in purchasing good knives like this was to inspire and encourage myself to cook more at home. i can say that i have been doing so more consistently than ever and in the long run i will be saving money. not to mention the health benefits of cooking fresh produce that is 1\3 of the price you would pay at a restaurant.

the knives get used every day in my house and i always hand wash them. they have never been placed in the dish washer.

Gunther Wilhelm say in their life time guarantee if anything happens to any of the knive's just take a photo send it in and we will replace the knife.

hey presto

i am so pleased i got these knives i hope this review helps you make up your mind in making this purchase.
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on February 3, 2011
I already own several quality knives.
At the recent Boston Wine Expo I saw the Gunter Wilhem booth. I purchased the Santoku knife because I was lacking one and it was just drop dead gorgeous.
I played with it when I got home and I was in love. I had to have the whole set ... regardless of the fact that I already owned some expensive Wusthof knives!
The heft and quality of these knives is beyond anything I have ever owned.

Now for customer service. Having purchase frequently on the internet I dont know if there is single product on the planet that does not get at least one negative revew. You have to weed through the reviews and see if negative ones are legit. After I got home and fell in love with the knife, I did a lot of web surfing, looking for every review I could find.
Almost exclusively positive reviews except for a few obvious crackpots!
So far my experience with Gunter Wilhelm customer service has been beyond exceptional! Like others. When I decided I wanted the whole set I sent them an email asking if I could purchase the complete set at the "show" price.
The next day I got a phone call and not only got the complete set but they sent me a substitute knife for the Santoku I already purchased.
When I got the set ... only 2 days later! amazing... I must say I was ever so slightly disappointed with the bread knife not being as razor sharp as the rest of the set.
Another email and phone call back the next day. Free replacement bread knife ... keep the old one.
If there is better customer service out there ... show me!!!

Another customer for life and will recommend to others. Thanks Paul and Joe at Gunter Wilhelm!
Keep up the great work.
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on November 6, 2011
I purchased the twelve piece set from Costco and added the fillet and santoku in four inch. I also got the steak knive set for 75 the block was 219.99 and the others were 35 each. They are by far better than my Henckels these make them like butter knives. The feel of them in your hand makes you not want to put them down and the warranty speaks for its self YOU WILL NOT FIND A BETTER SET OUT THERE. To say the least they are amazing finally I have the best knives out there. Costco is having roadshows for them in the next few weeks at Brandon,Clearwater,and Winter Park I think they will be the best knives you will purchase. The best price found was at Costco not because I work there but because they can't be beat at thier price point there. I have never cut with a knive that feels so good in your hand and they go right through what ever you cut put it this way I shaved with my cleaver and it was baby smooth. Remember this may sound dumb but a sharper knife is a safer one you use it less and goes strait through whatever you cut. Try them you won't be disapointed and Costco has the best customer service in the industry if you don't like them and that won't happen thier return policy is the best in there is!!!!!
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