I say it all the time: in the SAVEUR test kitchen, we do all the work of a commercial restaurant kitchen without actually being one. All of our equipment is used to exhaustion on a daily basis, but nothing gets a beating like our knives. We often use a whetstone to sharpen them, a honing steel to maintain the edges, and when things get really rough, we send them out to the professionals. At least, we used to send them out. Recently, we tested out Shun Professional’s Electric Whetstone Knife Sharpener. The spinning whetstone mimics the same technology used by trained knife sharpeners: the stone is safely set into the machine; before sharpening, you saturate it with water, preventing heated friction that can be damaging to your blade. The sharpener’s two different angled attachments (16 degrees for Japanese-style knives and 22 degrees for American-style) help you guide your knife through the stone, while a reservoir contains the water that runs off the whetstone. In under a half hour, we effortlessly brought 25 heavily worn knives back to razor-sharp perfection.
Shun Professional Electric Whetstone Knife Sharpener, $299.95 at Williams Sonoma