The knife is considered as the most important kitchen equipment by many. If you have ever cooked in your life, then you must know how hard it is to continue the cooking process without a sharp knife. To help you stay away from such distress, the best Japanese chef knife will come to your rescue. Keep reading to know more!
In case you are planning to buy a Japanese chef knife but do not know how to pick the right one on the market, our detailed buyer’s guide will help you a lot. So, delve into the article to know more about the best chef knife!
Top 10 Best Japanese Knives: Comparison Chart
Handcrafted in Japan
Best Overall: Shun Review
- VG-MAX steel is a formula exclusive to Shun with extra tungsten for a sharper edge, more chromium for corrosion resistance and additional cobalt and carbon for strength and durability
- Handle is ebony PakkaWood; PakkaWood is a hardwood infused with resin for a durable, water resistant finish, perfect for easy cleaning and tough enough for constant use
- For proper slicing, push the knife forward and down while cutting through food and then pull it up and back, repeating the process in a “locomotive” motion; this prevents chipping for smooth cuts
- “Shun” the Japanese word indicates a food’s peak ripeness; Shun draws on its Japanese roots and traditional blade-making practices to produce knives that perform excellently
- The 8-inch Chef’s Knife is a staple kitchen utensil and a great gift for newlyweds, homeowners, parents, grandparents, cooks, aspiring chefs, hostesses or to keep as a personal kitchen tool
Sharp and Keen-adged: FAMCÜTE Review
- 100% from Japan's High Quality Steel - FAMCUTE series uses 9CR18MOV. A great steel for the everyday use of any chef. With an HRC of 60+/-2 it will take an angled edge and hold it for long enough to help extend the life of your knife (w/ general maintenance). The clad dimple allow for easy food release while slicing or dicing. This blade is great for vegetables, fruits, fish, and meats. [Please refrain from cutting frozen products as this may detriment the knife's edge.]
- Ergonomic Design- Design inspiration are designed to show the special beauty of chef’s knives. While focusing on comfortability, and efficiency for the everyday chef. Blade length is 21.2cm and handle length is 15.3 cm with an overall length of 36.5cm. When a pinch grip is used the blade length is considered “true 8” inch” where the user will be able to maximize maneuverability of the blades cutting edge
- Full of Natural Handles - Is crafted from African rosewood, and is a great compliment to the beauty and comfort to the knife user. The stability of the handle allows the user full manipulation of the blade. This makes for effective use for precision, and endurance cuts. This handle makes mis en plas (food prep) FUN again
- Weight/Balance- The balance point runs heel to spine up the billet. Allowing the user a comfortable grip with precise cuts, and less wear and tear on the users hands. The weight is towards the blade of the knife making for efficient use during rock chopping motion.
- FAMCUTE's PROMISE- Quality is a massive focus of ours products. As a promise to our customers, When you open the package and receive a knife with any quality problems, we will replace it free of charge.
Ergonomic Handle: Imarku Review
- High-carbon stainless steel blade-It is manufactured from high-quality stainless steel that maintains its functionality for a long time. And to boost its sturdiness, the steel contains 0.6-0.75 carbon. This makes it two times as hard as other knives in its class as they contain about 0.3% carbon
- Multi-functional knife-The gyutou knife is classified and designed to be multipurpose knife for professional applications .It cuts,dices,slices,chops and also cuts meat off bones. It comes with a HRC( Rockwell Hardness Scale) of 56-58 which makes it among the tough knives in its class
- Ergonomic pakka handle-To make it more professional and minimize any fatigue, finger numbness or aches after holding it continuously for an extended time the knife's handle is made from Pakka. This is material that originates from Africa and its known for its comfort, strength and stability
- Ultra-sharp edge-Sharpness is key to achieving the best cuts and this is evident in the knife's blade which is quite sharp and will remain this way even after tough tasks such as cutting tough meat or removing flesh from bones. The sharpness is further boosted by use of the latest German engineering
- Corrosion and stainless blade-In addition to carbon, 16-18% chrome is also included in the blade's metal composition. This gives its a glossy finish which will not tarnish even after using it for a long time, making it the perfect gift for mother's day, father's day, wedding and birthday
Razor Sharp: Findking-Dynasty Review
- DYNASTY SERIES BLADE QUALITY - Findking’s dynasty series uses 9CR18MOV. A great steel for the everyday use of any chef. With an HRC of 60+/-2 it will take an angled edge and hold it for long enough to help extend the life of your knife (w/ general maintenance). The clad dimple allow for easy food release while slicing or dicing. This blade is great for vegetables, fruits, fish, and meats. Please refrain from cutting frozen products as this may detriment the knife's edge.
- DYNASTY SERIES HANDLE - is crafted from African rosewood, and is a great compliment to the beauty and comfort to the knife user. The stability of the handle allows the user full manipulation of the blade. This makes for effective use for precision, and endurance cuts. This handle makes mis en plas (food prep) FUN again
- WEIGHT/BALANCE- The balance point runs heel to spine up the billet. Allowing the user a comfortable grip with precise cuts, and less wear and tear on the users hands. The weight is towards the blade of the knife making for efficient use during rock chopping motion
- DESIGN- Dynasty series chef knives are designed to show the beauty of eastern chef’s knives. While focusing on comfortability, and efficiency for the everyday chef. Blade length is 21cm and handle length is 15.5 cm with an overall length of 36.5cm. When a pinch grip is used the blade length is considered “true 8” inch” where the user will be able to maximize maneuverability of the blades cutting edge
- OUR PROMISE- Quality is a massive focus of Findking’s products. As a promise to our customers, price will not be affected by our strive for the highest quality in our products.
46 Layers Hammered Damascus: Yoshihiro Review
- The VG-10 Hammered Damascus Series has been a perennial best seller, combining performance, beauty, and extraordinary value.
- [[TRADITIONAL GYUTO STYLE] The most versatile and essential of all knives a cook can have is a Japanese chefs knife known as a Gyuto knife.
- The Gyuto is a Japanese chefs knife with a curved blade that smoothly rocks back and forth and has an extended tip for quick chopping that can be used to cut meat, fish, and vegetables.
- [46 LAYERS DAMASCUS VG-10] Proudly made in Japan and forged and hammered with 46 layers of steel in the Damascus tradition with a VG-10 Core.
- [HAMMERED TEXTURE] The hammered texture of the blade eliminates friction and keeps food from sticking to the blade.
Stain & Corrosion Resistant Blade: KUMA Review
- Simply let KUMA knife blades do the work for you: While many chefs knives appear to be strong & durable, their thin, inferior blades bend and break easily under pressure. Our 8 inch Japanese chef is made of 67 layers of premium Japanese Damascus Steel Knife for extraordinary strength and longevity. Our sturdy kitchen knife is ultra strong and chip-resistant for solid, lasting resilience. Built with premium Japanese imported steel in historical YangJiang, China by our expert bladesmiths.
- Don't be fooled by low-grade chef's knives: Our corrosion resistant Damascus knife are put through a series of 8 engineering processes and are hand-finished with our V-Shape sharpening technology, for lasting sharpness right out of the box. This means you can cut through vegetables, meat and even that tender and juicy roast like butter!
- Beware of kitchen knives with cheap, uncomfortable handles: Our Damascus steel knife features an ergonomically designed, ultra comfortable, lightweight, high quality handle. With an exquisite design and minimal bolster for smooth and thorough cutting using both regular or pinch grip, this chef's knife has a hand-polished soft spine for a balanced, comfortable grip even while applying firm pressure.
- Great gift for the home chef & cooking enthusiast: Our beautifully handcrafted, professional-grade Damascus chef knife comes in a sleek, custom box and includes a high quality sheath and knife guard for convenient kitchen storage. This steel knife is the ultimate cooking tool for both the pro chef and home cook.
- Durable kitchen tools you can depend on: At KUMA, we’re dedicated to bringing professional cutlery into your home kitchen. We understand that quality kitchen tools are a long-term investment. We stand proudly behind every product we sell. (KUMA recommends to wash all knives by hand with a soapy cloth and dry immediately after. Dishwashers may harm steel cutlery over time).
Authentic Thin Blade Profile: Miyabi Review
- TRADITIONAL DESIGN - Authentic thin Japanese blade profile with 65-layer flower Damascus design with katana edge. 8"" chef style blade
- HAND-HONED - Using the three-step Honbazuke process to a 9.5 to 12 degree edge. VG10 super steel CRYODUR blade, ice-hardened to Rockwell 60
- MIYABI KAIZEN SERIES - Japanese for "improvement" or "change for the better." This next generation combines the greatest hardening technology with traditional craftsmanship
- MICARTA HANDLE - Features linen pattern with a mosaic pin, red accent spacers, and steel end cap. D-shape style in elegant black color
- JAPANESE MADE - In Seki, Japan " The Beauty of Sharpness" reflects values that are particularly highly prized in Japanese culture
Multi-purpose Knife: LEVINCHY Review
- SUPER DAMASCUS STEEL - LEVINCHY damascus chef knife is made of high quality 67-layer super(HRC 60±2) damascus steel for wear-resistant, durable, resists rust, stain resistant and discoloration.
- PROFESSIONAL CHEF KNIFE - Hand finished with a mirror polish at 8-12° per side, it meets all the chef's requirements for the knife. The razor-sharp forged edge is easy for cutting and hold its sharpness for a long lifetime. Stunning water ripple surface makes your cooking moment to be the most enjoyable time in life.
- PAKKA WOOD HANDLE - Ergonomically PAKKA handle is very comfortable and doesn't slip easily when you are using. The right balanced weight between the handle and the thin blade, ensuring ease of movement. Even if you use it for a long time, you won't feel tired and uncomfortable no matter your hand size, right&left or where you grip.
- MULTI-FUNCTIONAL KNIFE - The 8-inch damascus chef knife can handle your daily kitchen tasks easily, you can easily chop, slice, meat, fish, bread, vegetables, fruits, etc. It is perfectly an all-rounder for kitchen or restaurant and bringing excitement back to Cooking.
- THE PERFECT GIFT - The knife comes in a high-quality black gift box, making it the perfect gift for wife, husband, parents, grandparents, friends or yourself. Note: it is truly 67-layer super damascus steel.
With Sheath & Case: KYOKU Review
- VG-10 JAPANESE SUPER STEEL - Manufactured with ultra-sharp VG-10 Japanese Damascus steel cutting core at HRC 58-60 hardness, this 6 in. crafted culinary chef comes with unrivaled performance and incredible edge retention; cobalt added VG-10 steel outperforms AUS-10 steel in durability and is easier to sharpen as cobalt enhance the other alloying elements.
- ERGONOMIC & WELL-BALANCED - The 6" utility knife is our most versatile knife. If you only get one knife, this should be it. The gorgeous, hammer-beaten herringbone pattern on the base of the tang not only shows off the stunning craftsmanship but also prevents food from sticking to the blade, making it practical for everyday use.
- ULTIMATELY DURABLE HANDLE - The meticulously constructed G10 handle has gone through special treatment, making it extremely impervious to heat, moisture, cold with military grade strength and life-long sturdiness.
- SUPERIOR SHARPNESS - Ruthlessly sharp scalpel-like edge is handcrafted by seasoned artisans to a mirror polish at 8-12° double side using the traditional 3-step Honbazuke method; Nitrogen cooled for ultimate hardness, flexibility and corrosion resistance performance.
- LIFETIME WARRANTY - No premium knife is complete without a lifetime warranty; our masterpiece knife is fully covered for life, free exchange or return for life if the item is defective.
62 Rockwell Hardness: ALLWIN-HOUSEWARE Review
- High quality 67-layer Damascus steel for precision, beauty, and strength.
- Handmade, HRC 62 Rockwell hardness, 100% Quality Control.
- 12 Degrees super razor sharp edge, the sharpness can keep more than 6 months.
- Ergonomically designed rounded PAKKA WOOD Handle to prevent slip and create comfortable holding.
- The knife come with a black gift box, very suitable as a gift to mom, wife or friends.
Why is the Japanese Knife Best in the Market?
You must be wondering why the Japanese knife set is considered the best in the market. Well, there are few notable causes for it, which are stated as follows:
- Exceptionally sharp: This cutter has a 13 degrees angle blade that makes it sharpest of all the competitors in the market including the Chinese chef knife.
- Fine cutting: The one side beveling of the cutter helps to smoothen the process of cutting by pushing the ingredients in the desired direction effortlessly.
- Longer Durability: It is made up of strong steel that lasts for a longer period. People often prefer it because of its high durability.
- Lightweight: Although the steel is strong, the blades are much thinner and do not have a huge bolster. These qualities help it achieve lightweight, which makes it more comfortable to use.
- Perfectly balanced: As said before, there is no large bolster, which helps the Japanese cooking knives strike a perfect balance between the handle and the blade.
Best Japanese Chef Knife: Buyer’s Guide
What to Look for While Buying the Best Japanese Chef Knife?
The blade materials that are worth buying are as follows:
- Steel: Japanese steel chef knife has both iron and carbon in it, so the hardness provided by it is excellent. The carbon present also helps in increasing the tensile strength and ductility.
- Stainless steel: This comes with the same strength as that of steel. A stainless steel blade is rust-resistant due to the presence of chromium, which makes it a better choice than steel.
- Molybdenum vanadium: This type of steel has more strength and toughness than the above-mentioned materials. It is also resistant to rust or corrosive effect and is used for making the best Japanese knives.
- Damascus steel: Japanese Damascus chef knives are curvy, which makes them look more elegant.
Various impurities in steel decide some crucial factors of a Japanese chef knife blade. Carbon and tungsten are responsible for hardness and tensile strength, chromium and molybdenum increase the rust resistance, cobalt allows quenching at high temperatures, and vanadium decreases grain size.
You can measure the blade thickness at the blade spine. Mostly, the thickness is more at the spine and less towards the end. According to the Japanese chef knife reviews, a 240 mm thick blade can do most of the works, but if you want to cut harder ingredients like meat, then 300 mm thickness will do the best.
The sharpening angle depends on the blade thickness and the type of steel. A smaller sharpening angle is always preferred. The best cutter has a sharpening angle of 15 degrees, which makes the cutting process smoother.
Santoku vs. Western Style
The Santoku style blade is light and cuts faster than the Western-style blade. The Western-style cuts food in thick slices and in a rocking motion. If you want a Japanese chef knife for cutting thick-sliced vegetables or meat, then go for an affordable western style or else stick to the Santoku style.
The handle materials used in the best Japanese chef knife are as follows:
- Wood: Wooden handles are best in terms of quality and durability. They range from cheap to expensive price levels depending on the quality of wood you choose.
- Micarta: This material is strong and lightweight. It is one of the best qualities of plastics used for making cutter handles.
- Metal: Titanium and stainless steel are the popularly used metals in blade handles. These handles are strong, durable, and corrosion-resistant.
- Stag: This handle is made up of deer antlers that shed naturally. It gives a fine grip and a curvy shape.
The shape of a handle mostly includes octagonal cross-section, oval, and D-shape. Most of the people prefer the oval or D-shape because of the easy-grip provided by it. We would recommend you to choose the shape following your comfort.
The protruding steel part of a Japanese chef knife is called the tang. It secures the handle. The two types of tang are:
- Full-tang: In a full-tang, the steel is seen from all sides as it covers the entire cutter.
- Hidden tang: Here, the handle covers the tang. Therefore, the tang remains hidden.
Best Japanese Chef Knife Brands
The best Japanese chef knife brands are as follows:
- Hibana: This brand is known for manufacturing the best quality Damascus Japanese chef knife. Their knives are also easy to sharpen and loved by many.
- Miyabi: It is a part of the ZWILLING group of brands. Miyabi is known for producing high-quality Japanese chef knives for ages.
- Shun: This brand produces Japanese as well as Asian knives that have a fine finish. According to the ratings, this brand uses pro-quality steel.
- Korin: This company manufactures expensive cutters. It is a company that also sells other brands, including Suisin, Glestian, and so on.
- Gyuto: This brand uses premium quality stainless steel in its blade. Their products look elegant and are highly sold in the market.
How to Maintain a Japanese Chef Knife?
Certain tips for maintaining the best Japanese chef knives in the world are as follows:
- Try to keep them dry always.
- Use soap water for cleaning.
- Never use a dishwasher for cleaning.
- Sharpen at least once in a year. Use honing rod for sharpening at home.
Verdict and Recommendations 2021
We hope this article was able to help you know a lot about the best Japanese chef knife 2021. Follow this guide to choose the best cutter for yourself. So, which blade brand are you planning to invest in? Do tell us!