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Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver / Slicer Review – Chinese Chef’s Knife 210mm

We got 9 categories to talk about in this knife review. 

Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Cleaver Choil Shot
Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Cleaver Choil Shot

Quality Control & Improvements

Before you buy the Dao Vua knives you must know a few things. While Doa Vua made some improvements with the Quality control the biggest improvement sits in the blade design. They are thinner and more in line with Japanese-styled knives. However, Dao Vua still has some problems, just to name a few that you may encounter are a crooked choil, low and high spots on the blade, in some cases, the knife is slightly bent. In my review sample, you can see a bent tip which is mostly caused by shipment, low and high spots with a visible arch at the front. However, the handle design is very consistent and nicely made, the majority of the problems are with the blade which I hope they can improve in newer versions. 

Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Cleaver Arch at the front and a bent tip
Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Cleaver Arch at the front and a bent tip

Aesthetic & Specifications

The Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver comes with mono steel construction and a blacksmith finish. The steel is a leaf spring carbon steel that is not stainless and will react very quickly once used, and you will form a patina.

Dao Vua Classic V2 Santoku with Patina vs Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver
Dao Vua Classic V2 Santoku with Patina vs Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver

The blade length is 210mm measured from the heel towards the front. While Dao Vua did not specify the Rockwell hardness the Rockwell was fluctuating with the knife samples that I received. The Rockwell fluctuated between 59 to 60 with my review samples. The knife thickness is 2.0mm measured above the heel and 1.6mm in the middle. The knife weight of my review sample is 300 grams.       

Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver
Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver

Knife Handle & Comfort

The handle shape is a rectangular octagonal-shaped handle.

Dao Vua Handle
Dao Vua Handle

The knife is nicely sealed into the handle.

Dao Vua Handle and Blade
Dao Vua Handle and Blade

In terms of the comfort and feel of the Dao Vua handle, you will notice that the handle feels bigger and you need some time to get adjusted to the handle. Once you have adjusted to the handle it will be quite comfortable. The handle length is 13.7cm and Dao Vua did make the knife handle thicker, bigger, and longer for the Chinese Vegetable Cleaver.

Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Handle vs Doa Vua Santoku Classic V2
Dao Vua Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Handle vs Doa Vua Santoku Classic V2

Gripping Style & Balance Point

I recommend a pinch grip for a Chinese Vegetable Cleaver where the thumb and index finger determine the balance point. The point of balance is after the Doa Vua logo making the knife front heavy with a pinch grip which is what I expect from a Chinese Cleaver.

Point of balance Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Dao Vua Classic V2
Point of balance Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Dao Vua Classic V2

Due to the bigger design of the Chinese vegetable cleaver, I will be pinching more forward on the blade or I will, be pinching with 3 fingers.

Pinch Grip
Pinch Grip

The choil is rounded so there are no sharp edges. Despite the rounded choil, the choil will be noticeable and will cause discomfort over a longer period. Therefore I will be pinching with 3 fingers so that I still keep control of the blade without causing any discomfort since I’m not touching the choil.   

3 finger Pinch Grip avoiding the choil
3 finger Pinch Grip avoiding the choil

Knife Profile 

The blade profile is on the flat side, but the heel and the front have a slight curve to prevent you from digging into your cutting board. The curves also give you the ability to rock on herbs.

Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Profile
Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver Profile

Sharpness & Edge retention

The sharpness out of the box was not great and it was slightly inconsistent. The out of the box sharpened angle was around 20 degrees on this review sample. Once sharpened the edge will hold quite decently and will last you around 3 to 4 months with regular honing sessions in between. 

Dao Vua Classic V2 20 degree sharpened Angle Per Side
Dao Vua Classic V2 – 20 degree sharpened Angle Per Side

Key Takeaway

Due to the very reactive steel, you will notice that it will discolor on first use which is expected of this type of steel. If not cooked you will notice a metallic aftertaste and some food will turn brown. The after-taste will be less once you start using the knife more and more. The Blacksmith finish will come off after multiple washes and it will come off faster if you cut a lot of acidic food.

After Multiple usage and washes, you can see the PAtina and the Blacksmith finish coming off
After Multiple usage and washes, you can see the Patina and the Blacksmith finish coming off

Dao Vua made some major improvements with the Dao Vua Classic V2 compared to their first version but they can definitely improve some more to get the quality more consistent.

Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver/Cai Dao/ Chinese Chef's Knife
Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver/Cai Dao/ Chinese Chef’s Knife

The knife steel is very easy to sharpen and you can get a completely dull edge to razor-sharp within a few minutes on a whetstone. 

Recommendation

If you like the first version then this version will not disappoint since they fixed some of the major problems that they had with the first version. If you expected a flawless knife then this knife is not for you since the knife does come with some flaws that differ from knife to knife. And in my case, the tip was bent and needed to be fixed and there were some other minor flaws as mentioned at the beginning. 

Bent tip with my review sample
Bent tip with my review sample

Maintenance & Care

Because of the highly reactive non-stainless steel. I recommend that you coat the knife with some oil if you don’t plan to use the knife as often to prevent it from rusting. Or you have to force a strong patina to protect the knife from rusting. Make sure the knife is dry and stowed in a dry place. 

Left Mutlitple Usage - One Time Usage
Left Mutlitple Usage – One Time Usage

🛒S H O P:

Instagram: @daovuacustomknives

N O T E S:

The Dao Vua Classic V2 has been sent over by Doa Vua for review. You can contact them directly on Instagram for orders or find a retailer that sells them. Keep in mind that the prices directly from Dao Vua are cheaper but import taxes/sales tax may apply. I suggest that you find a reputable retailer with good customer support.

Dau Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver
Dao Vua Classic V2 Chinese Vegetable Cleaver

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Hi, I'm ChefPanko, I have worked for multiple restaurants and have decided to share my experience with you guys. I will share recipes and techniques that I have learned, taken, and improved from the French, Japanese restaurants that I have worked for. I will also explore other cuisines with you guys.

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