Best Japanese Knife Set Reviews (2021) With Buying Guide

Updated On: February 23, 2021
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When we say Japan, you probably start thinking about anime, manga, and technology. But do you know something else Japan is famous for?

Well, its knives! Yes, Japanese knives are amongst the most renowned in the world, as they blend style, elegance, and sheer power.

Japanese knives are used by top chefs worldwide, and they made pros out of many amateurs. Whether you are reading this to be a pro, or whether you are just passionate about cooking, your culinary escapades are incomplete without this knife.

That’s why we are reviewing the best Japanese knife set, to ensure you don’t miss out on an amazing experience. Our review will cover the best knives in the business and give you a succinct account of each. So, let’s begin!

Dalstrong
Popular
  • Japanese AUS8 Steel
  • Magnetic Storage Block
  • Razor Sharp Blade
Marco
Budget
  • Available in 3 Different Sizes
  • Perfect for Gripping
  • Stainless Steel Blade

Things to Consider Before Buying Best Japanese Knife Set

Before heading to the reviews, we will walk you through some key points you should consider before investing in the finest Japanese knife set. While this list is not exhaustive, we certainly hope to cover some crucial details that will help you decide which knife set to pick in the long run.

So, give this section a good read!

Type of Steel Alloy

Steel is generally used worldwide, but Japanese knife manufacturers try to take it up a notch and try to make the steel more durable. This is done by mixing steel with other elements to make compounds called alloys.

The most common types of alloys that are used in Japanese knives are chromium, copper, and molybdenum. Each has its own merit.

Chromium

You might know that Chromium induced steel makes the steel tougher and more resistant to abrasions. And Chromium has been used as an alloy for centuries due to its beneficial qualities. Hence, if durability is your main concern, go for chromium.

Copper

Copper is added primarily to increase the steel’s resistance against corrosion. Steel can corrode after repeated use, but the copper pulls this process back. Hence, if you the knife to last longer without corrosion, go for copper.

Molybdenum

Finally, molybdenum is added to induce an all-round balance between toughness, longevity, and abrasion resistance. Molybdenum imbibed blades will give you the benefits of copper and chromium in one package. However, be aware that they may cost you a bit more.

Convenience During Use

By convenience, we are referring to how well you can grip the handle of the knife, and whether it’s too heavy or light.

Japanese knives have a reputation of being more lightweight than their counterparts from other parts of the world. The reason for this lies in how the knives are designed.

The handles are made of lightweight composite materials that are easy to grip and feel light as a feather. Japanese knives have handles designed for speed and accuracy.

However, if you want more stability, then conventionally styled handles are better. They have strong and riveted joints. However, they are heavier than Japanese knife handles.

Blade Length Optimization

First off, trust us when we say there is no optimum blade size or length. Each person will feel differently regarding this parameter.

However, there are standard sizes available in the market. The most commonly found lengths are 8-10 inches. You will observe that the average Japanese steel knife set employs this length quite frequently. It is perfect for all sorts of tasks involving cutting, slicing, and carving.

Hence, if you are starting your journey of using Japanese knives, stick to this length for now. If you are a pro in working with such knives, then you may consider buying longer lengths.

Safety After Use

In case you haven’t guessed yet, Japanese knives are incredibly sharp. To store them safely after use, you must place them in a storage box.

Now, some knives come with a sheath made of wood or ABS, that slides over the blade. This is a good choice for professionals, but at home, a safety box will be better.

Benefits of Japanese Knife Set

At this point, you can probably visualize the superiority of Japanese knife sets over conventional ones. This section will briefly highlight the top benefits of a Japanese knife set.

Durability and Sharpness

The best Japanese chef knife is an ideal blend of durability and sharpness. Any knife can be made sharp, but durability is a different matter, as it rests on the material of the knife itself.

With their smooth and uniform edges, a Japanese knife set will last you years due to its corrosion-resistant properties.

Feather-like Lightness

In terms of lightness, a Japanese knife will put a feather to shame. They have been engineered to be light as that will help to amp up the speed of the person operating it.

Edge Retention

Japanese knife sets have made a name for themselves due to their unparalleled edge retention qualities.

While most knives end up chipped or blunt after sustained use, Japanese knives will retain the sharpness and smoothness of the blade even after repeated use. This makes them the first choice for many professionals around the world.

JUN YUJIANG
CHEN
JUNYUJIANGCHEN Japanese Knife Block Set
    • Premium Japanese Steel
    • Ergonomically Designed Handles
    • Perfact for Gift
Tojiro Tojiro Japanese Chef’s Knife Set
    • Japanese VG 10 Steel
    • Blade Sharpen at 12 Degree Angle
    • Triple Joint Technique Handle
DALSTRONG DALSTRONG Phantom Series Japanese Knife Set
    • Japanese AUS8 Steel
    • Magnetic Storage Block
    • Razor Sharp Blade
TUO TUO Japanese Kitchen Knife Set
    • Japanese AUS-10 Stainless Steel
    • 12-15° Sharp Blade
    • Ergonomic G10 Handle
Marco Marco Almond Japanese Kitchen Knife Set
    • Japanese High Carbon Steel
    • Stainless Steel Handle
    • Sharpener Attached to Knife Block
Kessaku Kessaku 4 Japanese Steel Knife Set
    • 7CR17MOV Japanese Steel
    • Pakkawood Handle
    • 16° Sharp Blade
Yarenh Yarenh Japanese Chef Knife Set
    • Japanese Damascus Steel
    • Dalbergia Wood Handle
    • The Blades Include 73 Layers
Zelancio Zelancio Japanese Cutlery knife Set
    • High Quality Carbon Steel
    • Packwood Grip Handle
    • The Blades Include 67 Layers
BGT BGT Japanese Damascus Knife Set
    • Damascus VG10 67 Layer Steel
    • Natural Teak Handle
    • Easy to Carry
Zelite Zelite Infinity Damascus Kitchen Knife Set
    • Japanese AUS 10 Steel Sheet
    • Triple Riveted Rounded Handle
    • Magnetic Block

10 Best Japanese Knife Set Reviews

So, time for the reviews! We will walk you through the top 10 Japanese knife sets and briefly discuss their pros and cons. Stay with us to see if there is any set you particularly like.

JUN YUJIANG CHEN Japanese Knife Block Set

JUN YUJIANG CHEN Japanese Knife Block Set

  • VG10 Japanese Stainless Steel
  • Ergonomically Designed Handles to a Comfortable Grip
  • This Knife Set Makes for the Ultimate Gift

To kick off our review section, we are going to start off with a 7 piece Japanese Damascus knife set from the factories of Junyujiangchen. This steel set is guaranteed to deliver on its promise of quality.

The knives in the set are made of premium Japanese steel of the highest grade. They have a hardness rating of 62, which is quite high speaking from an engineering perspective.

With its high edge retention, the blade has been constructed and sharpened with the best sharpening stone there is. This knife is amazing for cutting and slicing different types of meat, including chicken, turkey, pork, and beef.

Moreover, the superior design contains aeration spaces within the knife itself, to dry it completely. Many people complain that their knives take a long time to dry out, but with this knife, you will never face such issues.

With its wood handles, this product is incredibly convenient to use. You can wield using swift motion and it will still retain its stability. To make things better, the handles have been designed to meet maximum safety standards, so that you don’t get yourself injured when using it.

Because of its versatile nature and easy to use features, this knife set makes for the ultimate gift. Whether you want to surprise a loved one on their birthday or give an aspiring chef something of high quality to start off with, this product will have you covered on all bases.

Pros

  • Durable due to its high-quality steel composition
  • Easy to wield and use
  • Can be used to cut or slice all types of meat products
  • Excellent aeration mechanism in place to reduce moisture accumulation

Cons

  • The storage box has been reported to be of poor quality
Tojiro Japanese Chef’s Knife Set

Tojiro Japanese Chef’s Knife Set

  • Constructed with Japanese VG 10 Steel
  • The Blade Sharpening at a 12 Degree Angle
  • Full Tang Triple Riveted Micarta Handle

Made by the well-renowned knife manufacturing company Tojiro, this 2 piece chef’s knife set is all you could desire in a small package, with many benefits.

To start off, you will be getting an 8.25-inch knife and a complementary pairing knife, that is 4 inches in size.

Both knives are made by a process called clad construction, which involves placing layers of sheets of material one over the other. In this case, the center or core of the knife has been constructed with Japanese VG 10 steel.

The Japanese steel is sandwiched between two layers of stainless steel alloys. This is an engineering technique that makes the entire knife rust and abrasion-resistant. Stainless steel has beneficial anti-rust properties and helps to keep the more valuable Japanese steel protected.

The blade has been sharpened at a specific 12-degree angle. This angle is optimum for such knives, as it significantly boosts their sharpness and durability. Furthermore, the product has a very high hardness rating to ensure it can sustain heavy cutting forces.

Finally, you will notice that the entire handle has been riveted with the triple joint technique. This makes the handle sturdy and adds stability to the entire knife.

Pros

  • Made of durable VG 10 Japanese steel
  • Forged with clad technology to increase strength
  • Has anti-rust properties
  • Sturdy handles to support the blade

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a blade guard
DALSTRONG Phantom Series Japanese Knife Set

DALSTRONG Phantom Series Japanese Knife Set

  • Blades Have Been Forged by Expert Blacksmiths
  • Japanese High Carbon AUS8 Steel
  • Handles Have Been Made of Laminated Pakkawood

Dalstrong brings you one the best Japanese knife block set you will find anywhere. This 6 piece set features a high tech magnetic block to ensure your knives are safely packed away.

The knives in this set have crafted to perfection and are the epitome of style, class, and quality. It will be hard for you to find a knife that performs on this level, anywhere else.

The blades have been forged by expert blacksmiths, and have been sharpened to a range between 13 and 15 degrees. Furthermore, they have been rapidly cooled using nitrogen right after they were forged.

This high-intensity cooling sharpens the blade and makes it resistant to corrosion too. Such a blade will slice through the toughest meat chunks, and make it look smooth like silk. The blade is tapered at the end, this is done to remove meat from hard to reach bony areas.

Speaking of the blade itself, it has been manufactured from Japanese AUS-8 steel. This type of steel is already durable, and by being ice tempered, it is known more long-lasting and has that highly sought edge retention quality.

If you think wielding such a knife would be difficult, then you are in for a pleasant surprise. To maximize convenience, the handles have been made of laminated pakkawood, straight from the vineyards of Spain.

Such handles are easy yet firm to the grip, pleasant to look at, and completely free of harmful reagents that could cause skin irritation. To make it better, the handles are always at room temperature, even if the blade heats up.

Finally, you have the storage box, featuring a column like a build and magnetic straps on both sides. The magnets will keep the knives attached and will not release them unless you tug the knives away.

Pros

  • Magnetic storage block
  • Durable and razor-sharp blade
  • Lightweight handle
  • Engraved with designs to look aesthetic

Cons

  • Uncomfortable to use for left-handed people
TUO Japanese Kitchen Knife Set

TUO Japanese Kitchen Knife Set

  • Japanese AUS-10 Damascus Stainless Steel
  • 12-15° Per Side Sharp Blade
  • With Ultra Premium Ergonomic G10 Handle

Tuo has been making Damascus knife sets for years, and with this 3 piece knife set, they have outdone their competitors by miles.

The set features a chef knife, a Nakiri knife, and a pairing complementary knife. The Nakiri is noteworthy in particular. Considered as one of the, if not the very best vegetable knife out there, it is the first choice for many when it comes to slicing and chopping vegetables or fruits.

All three knives are made of superior Damascus steel. Damascus steel has been made for centuries by only the most expert craftsmen. The steel is characterized by wave-like patterns on the sides.

Tuo made this product with Japanese AUS 10 Damascus steel. It is characterized as having unparalleled corrosion resistivity, abrasion resistance, and superior longevity.

The blades have been polished by hand and sharpened at an angle ranging from 12 to 15 degrees. This angle range optimized the blade’s overall sharpness, making it thin like a razor but sharp like a sword.

While many users complain of sore hands while using high-quality blades, this product has knives that have been fitted with G10 handles. G10 is a fiberglass material, and it’s used for being lightweight, and thus making the knife easy to grip and wield.

Pros

  • Made of durable Damascus steel
  • Features 3 distinct knives for different uses
  • Special vegetable cutting knife included
  • Elegant looking fiberglass handle

Cons

  • A bit on the expensive side
Marco Almond Japanese Cutlery Kitchen Knife Set

Marco Almond Japanese Cutlery Knife Set

  • Japanese High Carbon Stainless Steel 
  • Ergonomically Designed Stainless Steel Handle
  • Knives Block is Built in Sharpener for Knives Self Sharping

When it comes to making the best Japanese cutlery, Marco Almond is no obscure name. In fact, their mega 14 piece Japanese steel-cutlery set just reinstates their reputation of bringing the best.

This set brings you all the knives you can possibly think of, and for every possible use. For instance, their 6 pieces of 4.5-inch steak knives are perfect for an outdoor barbecue, while their 8-inch slicing knife will cut through all types of meat.

The items in this product set are all forged with high carbon Japanese steel. This type of steel is absolutely anti-rust and also resistant to a process called pitting. Pitting is the formation of holes on the surface of the blades, and it is a primary reason for blade degradation.

While many Japanese knife sets are tailor-made for pros, this set is unique. It can be used with great efficacy by anyone who has a passion for cooking, and that’s why it’s a contender for the best chef knife set for aspiring chefs.

Sharpening knives are crucial, and you usually have to spend extra money just to buy a stone to sharpen them or get it done by a professional. But not anymore! This set also features a sharpener which is conveniently attached to the knife block itself.

This nifty design makes it possible to sharpen the blades right in your kitchen, without having to pay a single penny to anyone.

Pros

  • 14 different knives to choose from (also includes scissors)
  • Stainless steel handle designed for easy holding
  • Sharpener attached to knife block to provide quick sharpening
  • Resistant to pitting

Cons

  • Must be dried straight after washing (by hand), to ensure the shine isn’t lost
Kessaku 4 Japanese Steel Knife Set

Kessaku 4 Japanese Steel Knife Set

  • High Carbon 7CR17MOV Japanese Stainless Steel
  • Handle of the Knife is Constructed with Pakkawood
  • 16 Degree Angle Sharp Blade

Inspired by the classical swords of the ancient samurai, Kessaku’s four knife set has been made to mirror the heritage and qualities of the old days but keeping in mind the demands of the modern culinary age.

To start off, Kesaku makes some of the best handmade Japanese knives you will find anywhere in the world. Their knives have been artfully crafted by top craftsmen in the field of metal forging.

This amazing knife is made of the highest-grade Japanese carbon stainless steel with an added amount of chromium alloy. The chromium alloy adds to the strength of the steel and further reinforces it against corrosion and rusting.

To add to its distinct appeal, the handle of the knife is constructed with pakkawood; which has a polished and very pristine look. The knife is easy to grip and handle is also resistant to rapid fluctuations in temperature. This means you can use the blade to cut through hot items, but it will not affect your hand.

The four knives in the set include a special knife called a Santoku knife. This unique knife is ideal to use for three purposes: slicing, mincing and dicing. In addition, the chef’s knife and a paring knife can be used to cut all sorts of meat of varying texture.

The blades of the knife have been sharpened at a precise 16-degree angle. This allows the blade to retain maximum sharpness and also increases its longevity.

To cap it off, the set comes in a magnetic box to keep it safe when not in use. This makes it the perfect gift for professionals and newbies alike.

Pros

  • Imbibed with chromium alloy to resist corrosion
  • Forged at the optimum angle to maximize sharpness
  • Comes in a storage box
  • Includes a knife specifically designed for three purposes

Cons

  • Must be sharpened frequently if used regularly
Yarenh Japanese Chef Knife Set

Yarenh Japanese Chef Knife Set

  • 10Cr15CoMoV High Carbon Japanese Damascus Steel
  • The Handle is Made of Dalbergia
  • The Blade is Made of 73 Layers of Damascus Steel

Yarenh brings the ultimate 5 piece Damascus steel knife set, specially designed to bring out the professional chef in you.

In this set, you get 5 unique knives, each used for a different purpose. The noticeable, 8-inch Sashimi knife is used throughout the world by renowned chefs primarily to cut fish. This knife is highly sought after because it can gut fish like silk.

The Santoku knife, on the other hand, is a multipurpose knife, suitable for dicing, cutting, and mincing. All the knives in the product set have been manufactured with the world-famous Damascus steel.

Moreover, the blades include 73 layers of steel superimposed on each other to provide the maximum strength and durability. In addition, a chromium alloy is added to induce razor-like sharpness and make the blade resistant to abrasions.

When it comes to using the knife, few can compete with its convenience and nimble handling. The handle is made of Dalbergia, which is a class of natural wood. The texture of the handle is completely natural and wood is grown under the best conditions.

In order to achieve the ultimate presentation appeal, the set is presented inside a custom made box that has an indent for each knife.

Pros

  • Made of Damascus steel and highly durable
  • Features a Sashimi knife for cutting fish
  • Resistant to rusting
  • The wooden handle is crafted for comfort

Cons

  • The handle losses texture if not dried carefully after washing
Zelancio Japanese Cutlery knife Set

Zelancio Japanese Cutlery knife Set

  • Japanese VG-10 High Quality Carbon Steel
  • Dark Grained Packwood Universal Grip Handle
  • The Blade is Made of 67 Layers of Damascus Steel

Zelanico cutlery brings you a product that will make your kitchen the jewel of your neighborhood. Their 7 piece knife set is guaranteed to induce envy amongst your friends.

Composed of 67 layers of Japanese VG 10 steel, this is a Damascus steel product, forged by the finest craftsmen in the world. The layers of steel not only make the blade tough but also appealing with their distinct wavy patterns on the blade.

The core of the knives is made of high-quality carbon steel. This ensures that the core can support the exterior of the blade and cut a slice through the toughest meat like butter.

This 7 piece set includes a much needed honing rod. This allows you to sharpen the blade without having to resort to separately sold sharpening stones. This will save you money and time when you are working in the kitchen.

The grip of the knife is sturdy because the blade extends all the way into the handle itself. To induce a more comfortable grip, the handle is made of pakkawood. Pakkawood is resistant to water, so the handle will not break off after prolonged use.

To appear more presentable, the set comes in a specially enclosed box. This case can be used to store the knives away when they are not in use, preventing any unwanted accidents.

Pros

  • Made of tough VG 10 Japanese steel grade
  • The handle is resistant to water and sturdy during use
  • Includes a honing rod
  • Is designed for use by both left-handed and right-handed people

Cons

  • Magnetic storage boxes must be bought separately
BGT Japanese Damascus Knife Set

BGT Japanese Damascus Knife Set

  • Japanese Super Damascus VG10 67 Layer Steel
  • This Knife Set Have Natural Teak Handle
  • The Rolling Bag Makes it Easy to Carry

We are back with yet another Damascus steel knife set, but this time from BGT. This 6 piece knife set is designed for efficiency in the kitchen or anywhere it is used.

Made with 67 layers of high-grade Damascus steel superimposed on top of each other, the blades in this set are not to be messed with. They are made by a hammering process and have all the beneficial properties a knife must have, in addition to being razor-like sharp of course.

Along with your standard chef and utility knife, you will also get a Santoku knife and an 8-inch honing rod to complete the marvelous set. The Santoku knife is used to complete three tasks at once, dicing, cutting, and mincing.

Unlike other knife sets that come in a box, the items in this product come in a special roll-on bag. Equipped with a handle and shoulder strap, the bag makes carrying such sharp knives not only exceptionally easy but also safe too.

The handle of the knife is fitted with three riveted joints, that allow for stability, and swift cutting strokes during use. This is primarily due to its lightweight build, which allows you to brandish the knife like a pro.

The blade is easy to clean and can be made to look like new in a matter of seconds. Furthermore, there are no odors left behind after using this knife.

Pros

  • Includes a Santoku knife
  • Resistant to rusting due to chromium alloy
  • Comes in a rolling bag to make it easy to carry
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Should not be used on a table or hard surface
Zelite Infinity Damascus Kitchen Knife Set

Zelite Infinity Damascus Kitchen Knife Set

  • Made of 67 Layers of Japanese AUS 10 Steel Sheets
  • The Ergonomically Designed G10 Triple Riveted Rounded Handle
  • The Block is Made of Rubberwood and by Hand

Zelite brings you their best Japanese cooking knife in the form of a 6 piece set.

Made of 67 layers of Japanese AUS 10 steel sheets, this knife has been crafted by the best craftsmen in the field of cutlery forging and manufacturing.

To add sharpness to the blades, the knives have been produced by the 3-step Honbazuke Method, a method used for years to amplify sharpness.

Coming to the handles, you will observe they are cleverly rounded and fitted with triple rivets. This makes them stable along with making them super comfortable for all types of users. When it comes to delicacy and speed of use, this product is parallel to none.

The highlight of this product is the uniquely designed block that will store the knives. The block is made of rubberwood and by hand, so it is completely environmentally friendly.

With its rotating feature, the block will save you a bulk of space in the kitchen, and yet make the knives more accessible and easier to store.

The refined features of this knife set make it an ideal product for a variety of events including birthdays, weddings, and anniversaries. Next time, you don’t have to think twice about finding an appropriate gift for an aspiring chef.

Pros

  • Each knife is inspected for defects
  • Very sharp blades due to superior forging
  • Sturdy handles, that have been made with rubberwood
  • Rotating storing block

Cons

  • The storage block is magnetic, so other metallic products (such as forks) should not be kept close to it

Best Japanese Knife Brands

So far, based on what we have discussed, it is safe to say that some brands edge out others in terms of performance, durability, and appeal. This section will provide a brief summary of the brands we consider to be the best.

Marco Almond

Marco Almond is first on our list. This brand features a 14 piece knife set, and each knife is unique in its applicability.

What’s more, the knives in the set can be used for different purposes on the culinary spectrum. For instance, there is a knife that is suited for barbeque meat, while another is suited for roasted meat. This is the type of versatility you want to look for in a knife set.

Yarenh

Yarenh is the other brand we consider to be one of the best. The primary reason being that their Sashimi knife is on another level by itself. Seafood, such as fish is a staple food item for many nations, and a mind-boggling 143.8 million tonnes of seafood is consumed worldwide.

The Sashumi knife makes handling fish seem like a cakewalk. Hence, it is a must-have if you are cooking fish.

Why Japanese Knife Block Set Is So Good for the Kitchen?

Japanese knife block sets are beneficial to have in the kitchen. Here we summarise a few reasons behind their popularity.


They Offer Different Choices

You have noticed, no doubt, that Japanese knife block sets offer different types of knives. For instance, the Sashumi, the Santoku, standard chef knives, and more. These options will open up new possibilities of cooking for you, and let you experiment with different food items.

They Are Safe

Safety is a very important word in the Japanese dining culture. An unsafe cooking experience can ruin the moment and make you apprehensive of the kitchen.

Japanese knife block sets are designed for safety. With their storage boxes, sturdy handles, and blade sheaths, they make safety their priority so you can focus on cooking.

They Are Rust Resistant

A common feature of Japanese knives is that they are highly corrosion resistant. This is due to the types of compounds they add to the steel blade.

Less rusting implies a longer lifespan, so your investment can last years.

Frequently Asked Questions

Time for the FAQ section of this guide. We will now proceed to answer the most common questions you may have, so keep reading to know more!

Q: What is the Best Japanese Knife set?

A: This depends on personal opinion, as there is no one standard choice for all. For instance, many consider the Zelite Infinity knife to be the best, as it is rated 5 stars due to its enhanced features.

Q: Can You Put Japanese Knives in the Dishwasher?

A: No, this is not recommended at all. The dishwasher will end up damaging the blade of the name irreparably.

Q: What Angle is Best to Sharpen a Japanese Knife?

A: The best angle to sharpen a Japanese knife is between 17 to 20 degrees. Different manufacturers may use slightly different angles, but the most common range is as we mentioned above.

Q: How Often Do You Sharpen Japanese Knives?

A: This actually depends on a number of factors, such as how often you use the knife, what you use it for, the type of blade, and much more. But, generally speaking, and based on personal experience, you should sharpen the knife every 3 weeks or so, and at least once a month.

Q: How to Remove Rust from a Japanese Knife?

A: Rusting can occur after prolonged use, and it must be removed to maintain the knife. First off, never use water alone to remove rust. That will take you back to square one.

An effective, but little-known way is to use baking soda. Mix some baking soda in a bowl with little amounts of lemon juice. Then use a brush or sponge to scrape off the rust.

Final Words

Japanese knives are a work of art, and picking the right one requires patience, as they’re a plethora of factors to consider. By now you should be able to pick out the best Japanese kitchen knife set all by yourself. Remember what we discussed, and you are good to go.

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