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Everything you need to know about whetstones

When you are cooking up a storm and creating a feast, the last thing that you want to do is to have a blunt knife. You don’t need to be a Michelin-starred chef to want to work with a super sharp and effective knife. It makes your food look rubbish, and it can make you work harder than you need to. Having a sharp knife is a real boon. However, there is a lot to consider when you are thinking about sharpening your knives. Here is a little you need to know about whetstones.

What is a whetstone? 

A whetstone is effectively a slab of stone that is either natural or man-made and is used specifically used to sharpen knives and other tools like axes and tools. Whetstones are often called sharpening stones, but they are the same things. To whet something is to sharpen it. They have been in use since at least 79 AD and have originated in Japan and England. This is because these lands are filled with naturally occurring stones that are ideal for sharpening metal. They are called whetstones because of the action to whet something which is to sharpen it rather than the stones needing to be lubricated with water.

Why use one?

Using a whetstone to sharpen a knife is one of the most popular ways among chefs and home cooks to maintain their arsenal of knives. This is because they are extremely easy to use and can allow you to decide how the edge is going to turn out. There are a variety of stone grits that can allow you to decide how quickly and how much metal you want to remove from the edge. Another benefit is that they are not expensive. There are lots of synthetic choices out there that are perfectly adequate for what you need. Finally, they are low maintenance and only require a little bit of water before using them

Good things to know

You will need more than one grit for your whetstones. Grit is the stone’s coarseness level. You need to start with a coarse stone. This will help you get the desired shape of the knife in the smallest amount of time. This will immediately cut better than a blunt knife but there is more work to be done. You need to begin refining. This is the process of conditioning the blade so that it delivers the sharpest cut possible. You can use a fine stone for this part. By combining the two of these types of stone, you can make sure that you have a sharp and fine edge ready to go in no time at all. A fine stone would sharpen your blade, but it would take an age.


If you care about your knives or have a particular set that you like to use, then you need to invest in a whetstone. These handy tools can breathe new life into your knife and can make sure that you can use them well into the future before splurging on a new set.