A proper oyster knife makes preparing oyster flesh from shells so much easier, faster and avoids mixing shell bits with oyster flesh; not to mention avoiding having the flesh cut up in the shell. Oyster knives are also safer than kitchen knives, because they can help open the shell in a manner much less likely to go wrong or slip with a sharp dangerous blade. Compared to a regular knife, oyster knives tend to be more dull because usually extra force is used to shuck an oyster shell, penetrate the muscle joint and turn the knife to open the shell.
OXO Good Grips Oyster Knife
Even with wet hands, the soft handle is designed to avoid slipping out of your hands, which can be dangerous. The tip of the knife is bent, so it’s easier to flip open oyster shells, even if piercing through the oyster hinge. The knife blade is made of stainless steel, and it’s dishwasher safe. It’s so sturdy it won’t even bend the blade when you twist it in a closed shell.
The ergonomic handle is comfortable to use for long periods, while it’s possible to quickly go through 120 oysters as one customer claimed. Others also had similar claims of quickly, easily and comfortably cutting through large amounts of oysters. You need to know how to shack them properly, online resources are available from third parties. If you’re only experienced with using thin bladed oyster knives, you’ll need to know how to use this thick bladed knife properly.
HiCoup Kitchenware Oyster Knife
This American oyster knife has it’s own sheath. The manufacturer has strived so hard for quality that they even provide a lifetime guarantee against breakage, for replacements or a refund, “no questions asked.” Like the top knife here, it has a thick blade made of stainless steel, so smooth it gives a mirrored reflection. The handle is pakka wood, contoured for ergonomic comfort and good grip, with three smoothly integrated compression rivets. If your hand slips, there’s a generous sized hand protection barrier between the blade and the handle, which also protects your hands from sharp oyster shell fragments.
This oyster knife can shuck little nut sized shells and even 4 inch beasts. The blade can penetrate any oyster joint despite being thick and tough. The manufacturer has great customer service, one person claimed they got a free oyster knife from the company, though HiCoup had clearly made no fault.
Victorinox Oyster Knife
Not a Swiss Army Knife, it’s a Swiss oyster knife. This comes as a surprise after seeing Chinese and American products top many lists. Just like a Swiss army knife, this Swiss oyster knife has a red handle. This shouldn’t come as a surprise from Victorinox, because they invented the original Swiss Army Knife.
The handle grip is great for resisting slippage, even with wet hands. This handle feels more firmly held in your hand and more durable compared with the top ranking oyster knife’s handle grip. The long narrow blade is ideal for wedging between oyster shells, even those with the tightest gaps. This is a high quality oyster knife and if it breaks the blade, that’s most likely caused by incorrect use, especially by people who don’t insert the blade far enough into the oyster. Of course too much tension at the tip of the blade risks breakage.
What to Look For
A thick strong blade should be prioritized, because a lot of people have experienced broken blades while twisting oyster knives when trying to pry open a shell. This especially occurs with thin flimsy blades. Good grip for wet hands and possibly also a blade guard are essential safety features, because slippage while handling the knife under force are likely risks.
All the top knives had slip resistant handle grips that were effective even with wet hands. The best knives also had thick blades to resist breakage during the blade rotation phase of shacking. Using knives and force against a resistant oyster shell, which is usually held by the other hand unprotected, is a risky situation. An alternative device has no blade, but works by applying prying force by a hand lever mechanism that sits on a hard flat surface. It can cost around ten times more than an oyster knife.