I get asked a lot, "What knives do you recommend?" I try not to get stuck on brands or particulars. Rather, I'll just show you what I use and why. I chose these knives after doing some research. I looked at what my culinary heroes use and read as much as I could. Thomas Keller gives the best advice, "Always buy the best you can" (or, the best you can afford). It'll last much longer as well as give great service in the kitchen. Often premium products are backed with better warranties, too.
This is the first proper knife I got. Mac is not a widely available department-store knife. They're knives for chefs. This is my go to knife in the kitchen.
When properly sharpened, they're formidable
Also a fierce workhorse, my Global vegetable cleaver. This is great for chopping/cubing/dicing. The rectangular blade reduces the range of motion and helps keep the knife perpendicular to the cutting surface. It's also handy for scooping up the vege after chopping.
This isn't great for breaking down or trimming vegetables - or anything that requires deft mobility. All the same, it's razor sharp and keeps the edge well.
I met another chef who introduced me to Misono knives. I was very hesitant at first. This knife has an asymmetric edge. It's more tricky to sharpen, but it's uncommonly sharp.
I find myself using this knife a lot despite the fact that the handle is not as comfortable as I'd like. I really like it because it's fairly small. At 7" it's easy to maneuver and perfect for small batches.