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Review: This Dalstrong Knife Sharpened Our Kitchen Skills Right Out of the Box

It wasn’t too long ago that we found how exactly how transformative it is to have proper tools, like a high-quality Dalstrong knife, in our kitchen. We had previously been cutting tomatoes with serrated butter knives and our steak with the tiny sharp knife that lived in our cutlery drawer. But when we started getting more serious about what we were eating, and how we were preparing it, we realized we needed to upgrade our arsenal with better kitchen knives.

We first transitioned into a rather cheap but functional knife set from Amazon that got the job done and made us feel we actually knew what we were doing. But after a recent introduction to the 8-inch Dalstrong Chef and Cleaver Hybrid Knife, we realized we had barely scratched the surface of what was possible.

Courtesy of Amazon


  • Nice, even weight
  • Japanese steel keeps blade sharp
  • Quality craftsmanship
  • Easy to store


  • Could be intimidating without proper cutting skills

Dalstrong Chef and Cleaver Hybrid Knife Features

One of the best parts of ordering a Dalstrong knife is the unboxing experience. Arriving in a gradient blue and purple box, you’ll feel like you’re opening a diamond necklace rather than a knife. Inside you’ll find a decorative pin, a cloth for ensuring your knife’s shine, and a polymer sheath. If you’re like us and you don’t own a magnetic knife block, the sheath is the perfect accessory and a safe way to store the knife alongside your other utensils or cutlery.

The knife itself is its own work of art. A copper and brass mosaic pin is stamped into the side of the handle to signify Dalstrong’s Phantom Series line, as well as the beautifully engraved Japanese Kanji which runs down the side of the blade and stands for “Phantom” or “Ghost.” To keep true to the Japanese name, the blade is sharpened using the ancient 3-step Honbazuke method, which adds an additional layer to the impeccable craftsmanship that this knife ships with.

Performance: Are Dalstrong Knives Good?

Using this Dalstrong knife for the first time felt like a religious experience. The Japanese D-shaped pakkawood handle fits seamlessly into your palm, and with the knife weighing just over half a pound, it feels incredibly strong without making an amateur chef feel intimidated.

Forged from a single piece of ice-tempered Japanese AUS-8 steel, this blade is razor-sharp and slices with incredible ease. Per Dalstrong, each knife is hand sharpened before being shipped to ensure that it cuts clean from the first time you use it to the 100th time you do.

Dalstrong’s 8″ Phantom Series Chef and Cleaver Hybrid Knife can take on the toughest and softest vegetables you throw at it. Jakob Menendez | SPY

This Dalstrong knife is truly such a breeze to use and takes away a lot of the aches and pains of cooking that we were used to. Given its hybrid functionality, it does everything you’d hope a chef’s knife would do (dicing, mincing, slicing, etc.) exceptionally well, while also performing cleaver duties (spatchcocking, pounding, chopping, etc.) like a champ.

Before writing this article, we tested this hybrid knife by making one of our favorite meals: a hefty chicken cutlet sandwich with tomato, avocado, diced onion, jalapeños, and cilantro.

The ice tempered Japanese AUS-8 steel helps keep the Dalstrong 8″ Phantom Series Chef and Cleaver Hybrid Knife razor sharp. Jakob Menendez | SPY

The knife easily glided through the tomatoes, making perfect cuts, while the weight of it helped to halve the white onion with very minimal pressure from the other hand. Afterward, it made quick work of the jalapeños and cilantro and pitted and sliced the avocado without a fuss.

As a cleaver, this knife flattened out our chicken breasts in seconds after smacking them vigorously with the base of the blade. Before we knew it, the cutlets were in the fryer and then on a roll.

The Verdict: Should You Buy a Dalstrong Knife?

In a way, this knife is the Always Pan of kitchen knives, due to its unique functionality. If you’re not familiar with the Always Pan, it’s in the name — it just “always” works for whatever. But while this Dalstrong knife may not have eight specific and distinct functions like this pan, we can say without a doubt that this one knife could easily take the place of three or four high-end cooking knives. It’s the ultimate kitchen utility tool that could prepare an entire Thanksgiving meal without breaking a sweat, and it earns our endorsement as a must-have item in your arsenal.

Courtesy of Amazon