The Best Dalstrong Knife Review: Crazy Good Value or Cheap Crap?
By Bobby B. | Updated January 17, 2020 | Knife Brands
Relative to many of the other top knife brands, Dalstrong is a rather young company. But it hasn’t taken much time for them to make a big splash in the industry. They quickly became known for beautiful kitchen knives with many of the same high-end materials that the “big boys” use. As you’ll see in our Dalstrong knife review below, they provide a great value for your dollar and are definitely not cheap crap!
While Dalstrong does provide nice knives for a great price, there are many traditionalists that aren’t jumping on the bandwagon. Many hard-line chefs are sticking with the traditional names of Wusthof, Shun, J.A. Henckels and the like, calling Dalstrong a Japanese wannabe company making knives in China. Despite hesitation by some to adopt a newer player in the market, Dalstrong is definitely doing some things right.
They have great customer service and will do whatever it takes to make customers happy, including satisfaction guarantees. In addition, their marketing is off-the-charts with high tech videos and high-resolution images of their knives in use. Many home chefs and those that have tried Dalstrong knives are pleasantly surprised at the quality knife they can get for a fraction of the cost of those traditional brands listed above.
Dalstrong classifies their knives into five different series. We cover each of them in detail below. If you’d like to read those before reading about our favorite Dalstrong knife sets, you can follow these links.
The Best Dalstrong Knife Set 2020
Colossal 18pc Knife Set
8pc Knife Block Set
6pc Magnetic Knife Block
5pc Titanium-Coated Set
Shadow Black Series
2pc Set w/ Trinity Block
Dalstrong Review: Top 5 Knife Set Comparison
9” Carving/Slicer, 9” Bread Knife, 8.5” Kiritsuke Chef Knife, 8” Chef Knife, 7” Santoku Knife, 7” Nikiri Knife, 6” Boning Knife, 6.5” Utility Knife, 6” Serrated Utility Knife, (6) 5” Straight-Edge Steak Knives, 3.5” Paring Knife, 2.75” Bird’s Beak Paring Knife, 10” Gladiator Series Honing Steel
- Set provides every knife you’ll need in the kitchen
- All your kitchen knives will finally match
- Includes steak knives unlike most other sets
- Large set takes up lots of counter space
- Price might be out of budget just due to number of knives included
Knife for knife, this set is one of the best values for any home cook. You can pay less for a nice set of knives, but this set includes every knife you’ll ever need and they are all full-tang, forged knives made of high-quality German steel. It’s a nice mid-range set that combines a decent knife and a great per knife price tag. Keep in mind that with other sets, you’ll often still have to go out and buy a decent set of steak knives to go with it and then they won’t fit in your knife block. This set gives you everything you need and a 100% SATISFACTION or MONEY BACK GUARANTEE!
9” Carving/Slicer, 9” Bread Knife, 8” Chef Knife, 7” Santoku Knife, 6.5” Utility Knife, 6” Serrated Utility Knife, 3.5” Paring Knife, 8” Gladiator Series Honing Steel
- Good overall price for all your essential kitchen knives
- Efficient use of knife block means using less counter space
- Per knife price higher than Colossal 18pc set
- Steak knives not included
Many of the same Gladiator Series knives that were included in the 18pc set above. While this 8pc set is sold for less money, your per knife price goes up dramatically and you’re also giving up the steak knives. If you don’t have much counter space or just don’t need so many knives, this is a nice set. You still get Dalstrong piece of mind and their 100% SATISFACTION or MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. The hand-made acacia wood block really looks nice in any kitchen and fits just about anywhere. This is one of Dalstrong’s most popular kitchen knife sets.
9” Bread Knife, 9.5” Kiritsuike Chef Knife, 8” Chef’s Knife, 7” Santoku Knife, 5” Utility Knife, 4” Paring Knife
Walnut Wood embedded w/ Powerful Magnets
- High-quality knives use Japanese high-carbon AUS8 Steel
- Magnetic block shows off beautiful knife blades
- Space for 6 additional knives or other metal objects
- Block is hygienic – no grooves or slots for bacteria to form
- Higher quality knives means higher per knife price
- Steak knives not included
This Phantom Series knife set with the Dragon Spire magnetic knife block looks awesome in the kitchen! It does a great job of combining fit and function on the counter space with the dope visuals of showing off those smooth, etched blades. While you will pay more per knife on this set than those above, check out our review of the Phantom Series below and you’ll understand why. This 6pc set covers all the basic kitchen knives, but also leaves room for a nice set of steak knives or for you to fill in other knife gaps you might have in your home.
8” Chef’s Knife, 7” Santoku Knife, 6.5” Serrated Knife, 5.5” Utility Knife, 3.75” Paring Knife
Acacia Wood with Metal Plates
- Uniquely cool-looking knives not found elsewhere
- Basic knives are covered
- You pay a little more for “coolness” factor vs. other knives of the same quality
- Only 5 knives are included in this set
How cool are these knives? Dalstrong says they are designed with the stealth fighter as their inspiration. We think they’re also perfect for those of us that wish we could be ninjas! Although the thought of the black knives and angular handles might seem gimmicky, see our Dalstrong Shadow Black Review below to understand that they’re also high-quality knives made of high-carbon German steel and G10 handles. If you want the look of these knives in your kitchen, look no further. This is a unique set you won’t find elsewhere.
8” Gyuto Chef Knife, 3.75” Paring Knife
Hand-Crafted Walnut Wood Trinity Block
- Higher quality knives means higher per knife price
- Only 2 knives included – will likely still need to buy more knives for a complete set
Although this Dalstrong Shogun set of knives are towards the higher end of the quality scale, we still decided to leave this set lower on our list due to only including 2 knives. You can add the other 2 recommended knives to make a nice set, but that will set you back roughly another $180-$200 in addition to the cost of this set. If you’re going to use these knives professionally, this is a great set, but if you’re just looking for something in your kitchen, you can find a bigger set of decent Dalstrong knives by choosing one of the other options above.
Dalstrong Knife Reviews and Series Guide
With so many options available even within this one brand of kitchen knives, we realize it can be difficult to discern which is the best. With so many impatient readers these days, we opted to provide our Dalstrong knife set reviews first. However, the following information is the real meat and potatoes in details and comparisons between the different series that Dalstrong offers in their lineup.
These are listed in the order from highest quality first to lowest price last.
AUS10V Japanese Super Steel
G10 Fiberglass Resin Handle
8 – 12 degrees
The Dalstrong Shogun Series professional-grade Japanese style kitchen knives that double as a wonderful tool for some very lucky home chefs. The knives in this series use a core made of AUS10V Japanese Super Steel wrapped with 67 layers of Damascus steel that creates a beautiful Tsunami Rose pattern on the blade. Each blade is liquid nitrogen cooled to enhance its hardness and precision.
The hardness that comes from this process and the steel used is incredibly hard, giving the knife great edge retention properties. To sharpen these knives at the factory, Dalstrong uses the ancient, 3-step Honbazuke method. The handles are made of G10 Garolite, an ultra-durable material impervious to moisture as well as cold & hot temperatures.
You’ll have a hard time trying to beat their price on this series. Most knives on the market with the characteristics outlined above will cost you anywhere from 1-1/2 to 3 times as much as these do. If you want the best Dalstrong has to offer, definitely consider the Shogun Series. They are knives you should be able to use for the rest of your lifetime!
Japanese AUS-8 High-Carbon Steel
Laminated Pakkawood Handle
13 – 15 degrees
The Dalstrong Phantom Series knives are made with a high-carbon AUS-8 steel that includes high levels of Chromium to resist staining and corrosion. The beautiful engraved logo adds a really nice touch and sets off the looks of the blade. With another Japanese-style blade, the Phantom Series, Dalstrong uses the Honbazuke sharpening process to get a super-sharp edge.
As you move from the blade to the handle, there is a distinct red spacer near the bolster. The balance on the Phantom Series is great with the ergonomically D-shaped pakkawood handle and weighted cap.
In true Dalstrong fashion, knives in the Phantom Series are perfect for gift giving with their top-notch presentation and accessories. Each knife comes with its own gift box and DragonLock sheath that folds shut to protect the entire blade.
ThyssenKrupp High-Carbon German Steel
Black Pakkawood Handle
14 – 18 degrees
The Dalstrong Gladiator Series knives are more of a Western or European knife style that those mentioned above. They use high-carbon German steel, wider blade angles, and have a heavier full bolster. This series is an attempt to compete directly with some of the knives Wusthof and J.A. Henckels, both German companies, have to offer.
While the knives are heftier than the ones discussed above, the steel isn’t quite as hard, meaning slightly lower quality, but also lower prices. The Gladiator Series knives by Dalstrong are a great option for most households. They are still of good quality, and are actually more in the style of what Americans are used to, but they are also very affordable.
Whether you’re looking to surprise someone with a great gift or just want to grab some affordable knives that still stand out and some of the best, Dalstrongs Gladiator Series is worth looking into. You won’t beat their price!
ThyssenKrupp High-Carbon German Steel
High Chromium Stainless Steel
14 – 16 degrees
Similar to the quality and pricing of the Gladiator knives, the Dalstrong Crusader Series uses the same German steel. It also has a similar edge angle and hardness with the largest change in the blade being the half bolster vs. full bolster.
Moving on to the handle, this is where the major difference between these knife collections come into play. Where the Gladiator knives use a pakkawood handle, this Crusader knives are all stainless steel and utilize a very modern look and feel as 100% metal knife, blade and handle.
Dalstrong’s Crusader Series knives are unique, beautiful, and perform very well for the price point at which they’re sold. They knid of remind us of Global Cutlery knives with the all-metal design, but they’re priced lower. Check the availability of the Crusader knives at Amazon using the link below.
ThyssenKrupp High-Carbon German Steel
Military Grade G10 Handle
16 – 18 degrees
The Dalstrong Shadow Black Series is perhaps one of the most unique kitchen knife lineups available. The all black knife even has a black non-reflective titanium-nitride coating on the blade itself. Although it’s clearly made to have the “cool factor”, the specs on this knife are nothing to sneeze at.
Similar to the Gladiator Series, the knives in the Shadow Black Series are made of high-carbon German steel and have a full tang. It’s only fitting since the design was said to be inspired by the F-117 Nighthawk Stealth Fighter jet that this series uses military-grade G10 fiber-resin handles. Believe it or not based on the looks, these handles are actually pretty comfortable in your girp.
There’s not much else to say. Most chefs either think these knives are really dope or really silly looking. If you like them, we recommend clicking the link below to see the entire lineup of Dalstrong’s Shadow Black knives at Amazon.
BD1N-V American HYPER Steel
G10 Woven Fiberglass Handle
8 – 12 degrees
Ok, so we didn’t get list all the Dalstrong Series in order of quality/price. The Dalstrong Omega Series is kind of a different animal all together. Technically, it’s the extreme high-end as it pertains to steel quality, hardness, finish, and well…price. The reason we list it after the others is because it’s also less popular and well-known. That’s not because it’s not a good knife (it is a good knife). It’s more because the at the time of this writing, there just aren’t too many Omega Series knives available.
So, what makes the Omega Series a great knife? This is one of the very few top-tier knives that uses an American steel. The BD1N-V in these knives is super-hard, like 63+ on the Rockwell Hardness Scale. This is also a 67-layered Damascus knife, sharpened with the ancient method known as Honbazuke. The blade itself has what Dalstrong calls their “LiquidMetal” pattern.
Heading towards the other end of the knife, the tapered bolster gives these knives a perfect balance point and it’s also full tang, so it’s built to last a lifetime. Other cool features of the Omega Series knives are a PU Leather Dalstrong sheath included with each knife and the ever-popular G10 resin handle material.
Dalstrong Steak Knives
Dalstrong does make a few nice steak knife sets. There are options for both serrated and straight-edge, but unfortunately, not all Dalstrong series have steak knives available. Like other Dalstrong knives, each of their steak knives come with its own individual sheath which is great for storage. In addition, they provide gift-worth packaging with each set, so don’t forget dad on Father’s Day!
Check out these great Dalstrong steak knife sets…
Dalstrong Knife Review Summary
As mentioned at the outset of this page, there are many haters out there that don’t believe Dalstrong should be considered a top knife manufacturer under any circumstances due to their age and location. There are just as many or more home chefs that LOVE the idea of being able to buy a beautiful knife made with the same materials as really expensive knives at a fraction of the cost. Likewise, there’s a third camp of folks that give Dalstrong a change and are pleasantly surprised in the value they provide. That’s kind of where we stand. We were skeptical, then pleased with what we found in Dalstrong.
One thing we haven’t talked about yet is Dalstrong’s customer service. Along with their prices and marketing, customer service is one of their greatest assets! Not only do they offer a 100% Satisfaction or Your Money Back Guarantee on their knives, but they also make sure to quickly answer any and all questions that get posed to them on Amazon. They are polite and knowledgeable and even address many of the issues noted in the ultra-rare negative reviews. It’s this kind of service that makes it worth giving this brand a shot. If you don’t like it, you can return it!
Where Are Dalstrong Knives Made?
Dalstrong knives are made in Yangjiang, China. The city of Yangjiang is clearly a hub for knife making with over 1500 different knife factories in this one city alone! Although their knives are made in China, Dalstrong does import steels from all over the world to produce their knives. This includes high quality knife steels from Japan, Germany, and even the United States.
Are Dalstrong Knives Dishwasher Safe?
It is recommended that you hand wash and dry your Dalstrong knives immediately after use to increase their life. This is no different than any other good, quality kitchen knife that is produced using high-carbon steel so as to reduce the chances of corrosion and additional wear.
Are Dalstrong Knives Any Good?
Some traditionalists give Dalstrong a hard time because they are manufactured in China. They are clearly not the oldest, most experienced knife brand in the world and still have some room to improve. However, it’s not fair to judge their knives based solely on where they are produced. Dalstrong uses high-quality materials and sound methods for mass producing good knives at a very affordable price.
Dalstrong Shogun vs Gladiator: Which is better?
Well, better is definitely a relative term. If we’re talking just about strength and hardness of materials or craftsmanship in general, then the answer is Shogun. However, if you’re a home chef and want to get the most bang for your buck and can only speed $300-$400 on all your kitchen knives combined, then the Gladiator Series is better for your needs. Some also just like the German style knives better. This is another case where you might opt for the Gladiator knives over the Shogun Series.
How Do Dalstrong Knives Compare to Zelite Infinity?
Both Dalstrong and Zelite Infinity brand knives fight for the same market share. They both appeal to consumers that want knives made of quality materials at a lower price-point, not concerned with big, fancy brand names. This is such a common question that we’ve dedicated an entire page to comparing and contrasting these two knife brands.
- Check it out here: Zelite vs Dalstrong