Miyabi is owned by Zwilling J.A. Henckels, a cutlery manufacturer based in Solingen, Germany. Miyabi makes its knives in Seki, the origin of Japanese Samurai Sword makers. The knives are designed by Japanese and are manufactured in Zwilling’s factories based in Japan. A Miyabi chef knife is 100 percent authentic because of the contemporary Japanese design. Just like Solingen in Germany, Seki is Japan’s blade capital and the center of Japanese knife production. Miyabi knives combine the finest Japanese artistry and craftsmanship with German engineering to produce the best chef knives in the world. In this article, we will discuss all there is to know about these top rated Japanese knives and the best Japanese chef knives.
- 1 Miyabi Knives Review: A Brief History of Miyabi Knives
- 2 Miyabi Knives Review: Product Line
- 3 Miyabi Chef Knives Review: Top Miyabi Chef’s Knives
- 4 Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
- 5 Miyabi Kaizen 8-inch Chef’s Knife
- 6 Miyabi Fusion 8-inch Chef’s Knife
- 7 Miyabi Artisan SG2 8-inch Chef’s Knife
- 8 Why You Should Buy a Miyabi Chef Knife
Miyabi Knives Review: A Brief History of Miyabi Knives
As stated earlier, the town of Seki in Japan has been known as the nation’s capital of knife making. The quality of the knives made in Seki is usually compared to that of the knives made in Solingen, Germany. The history of Miyabi knives can be traced back 800 years ago, when a master sword smith, Motoshige, started making swords in the city. Motogishe camped in Seki because it had all the essentials he needed to start making swords. Motogishe loved the city of Seki because of its beautiful hills, clean water, timber for charcoal, and rich deposits of iron sand, making a perfect mixing for making his crafts.
Motogishe crafted his first sword, Katana, in this iron rich city. The tradition of katana-making passed down from generation to generation. However, in the late 1800s, the Japanese government banned carrying weapons. This made the production of swords to decline. In order to stay in business, the craftsmen developed smaller version of their products.
Since, then, apart from producing swords, the production of cutlery emerged and became a major industry. One of the knives that were produced was the Miyabi knives. These knives were made using the finest quality steels. Today, a Miyabi chef knife is a top quality knife and one of the most technologically advanced knife all over the world. With their ultra comfortable grip and evenly balanced weight, these knives have become a vital tool for professional chefs around the world. You will certainly be pleased about the less effort you will exert to slice and dicing ingredients. These knives are made of incredibly sharp blades that maintain their cutting edge for long.
Miyabi Knives Review: Product Line
Miyabi Morimoto 600S Knives
Designed by iron chef Masaharu Morimoto, the Miyabi Morimoto 600 S knives combine the features of a traditional Japanese knife with a western looking ergonomic handle. These knives are hardened using the Zwilling Friodur ice hardening process. This gives these knives excellent properties, such as corrosion resistance, flexibility, improved hardness and high cutting edge retention. This makes these knives not only durable, but also functional. When compared to other Miyabi knives, the Morimoto series of knives come at a very affordable price. They come in a wide range of blade sizes, ranging from the 3.5-inch to the 9.5-inch knives.
Miyabi Artisan Knives
These knives boast an innovative SG2 Micro-carbide steel core that is clad with layer of stainless steel and nickel to form an appealing “Tsuchime” pattern hammered finish. A beautiful hefty Pakkawood handle is paired professionally with the blade of each Miyabi artisan knife. The handles are carefully contoured for a comfortable grip and they not wear out your hands when used for an extended period of time.
The Miyabi Artisan knives are hand formed and honed in Seki, Japan. They are regarded an amalgam of classic quality craftsmanship and modern scientific achievement. Just like the Morimoto knives, the Artisan series come in a wide range of sizes ranging from the 3.5-inch paring knife to the 9.5inch chef knife. When compared to the Morimoto series, the Miyabi Artisan knives come at a higher price. Their prices range from $130 to $ 230 USD.
Miyabi Fusion Knives
Designed by the famous Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, the Miyabi Fusion knives boast 32 layers clad on both sides of the VG-10 super steel core. This leads to the creation of a beautiful Damascus flower patter. Each blade is honed using an ancient Japanese honing technique before being Cryodur hardened for enhanced flexibility and hardness. These knives are razor sharp and are well balanced. The Miyabi Fusion knives come with a full tang and triple riveted western style handle that is comfortable to grip.
Miyabi Kaizen Knives
Kaizen is a Japanese word meaning “improvement” or “Change for the better”. Featuring 32 layers on each side of the VG-10 super steel core, these knives are not only hard but also appealing to look at. The beautiful Damascus flower pattern makes these knives truly authentic. Each blade is honed using the ancient Honbazuke technique and then hardened using the Zwilling’s Cryodur hardening process. The handles of these knives are made from black micarta, which is accented with a mosaic pin, red spacers and metal end cap.
Miyabi Birchwood Knives
The Miyabi Birchwood knives are one of the most popular Japanese knives. The steel core is surrounded by layers of Damascus steel. This creates an appealing flower pattern. For enhanced hardness and flexibility, all the blades are hardened using the Zwilling Cryodur hardening process. To retain their sharpness, the Birchwood knives should be sharpened twice on whetstones with custom grits, followed by mirror polishing on a leather wheel.
Just like other Miyabi knives, the Birchwood series comes in a wide range of sizes ranging from 3.5-inch paring knife to the 9.5-inch chef knife. The come at a considerably higher price when compared to other knives. All knives are feature a traditional D shaped handle that is made of Birch Burl Wood and boasts a mosaic pin accent with an engraved end cap. For enhanced durability, it is recommendable that you hand wash these knives.
Miyabi Knives Review: 3 Common Features of a Miyabi chef Knife
Miyabi knives have different levels of steel hardness. The hardness of the steel depends on the resistance to the indentation of the steel material and the unit is expressed as a number in the Rockwell C Scale. The higher the rating on the Rockwell scale, the harder the steel. The harder the steel, the more capable it can retain its cutting edge for long. Since most Miyabi knives have a high hardness rating, you also have to keep into account that it will take time to sharpen the blades.
2. Layers of Steel
Miyabi knives are made of several layers of folded steel. The core layer is made of hard steel, though its hardness comes with a prize as it can easily break if it falls. This explains why these chef knives are coated with multiple layers of soft steel.
3. The Handle
The handle of a Miyabi chef knife, especially the Birchwood series is made of highest quality wood. The natural structure of this wood has a texture that ripples with streaks and lines, giving a warm feeling. Its weight counter balances the blade evenly to give you a firm comfortable grip that is not stressing your wrist. Additionally, the handles of these knives are D-shaped, just like most traditional Japanese knives. The intention of this is to prove a more comfortable grip as the user embraces their fingers around the handle. This allows for more control over the knife to enhance precision.
Miyabi Chef Knives Review: Top Miyabi Chef’s Knives
Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
The elegance, beauty and amazing features of the Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife will certainly captivate you from the first time you hold it. This all purpose Miyabi chef knife comes with a heavy and sturdy construction, wide blade and an incredibly sharp cutting edge. The razor-like sharpness is idea for cutting fruits or vegetables, dicing and slicing poultry, fish or meats, as well as chopping scallions or herbs.
Professional chefs and experienced home cooks will find this chef knife suitable for performing circular rocking and chopping motions required for most food preparation needs. The SG2 8-Inch knife from Miyabi is perfectly balanced, lightweight and versatile. The functional elegance of this cook’s knife is an investment in art, tradition, style, design and construction for the discriminating that always look for the absolute best for their kitchen. Both the handle and the blade are made from the most precious materials, which explain their appealing appearance.
The Miyabi chef knife SG2 steel core surrounded by 100 layers of Damascus steel. This kind of steel has its origin in the swords of the middle ages, but was first used in India. Damascus steel is used because of its extreme hardness, fine honing qualities, resistance to shattering and extreme durability. The Damascus flower pattern is an artist creation of banding and mottling that is specific and unique for each knife. Under the Damascus steel is the Zwilling J.A. Henckels formula SG2 micro-carbide powder stainless steel that is made of high carbon content of superior quality. Together, the fabrication and the blade materials are an excellent option for people looking only for the best.
The SG2 knife blade is hardened using the Zwilling J. A. Henckels Cryodur 4-Step hardening process that enhances the properties of the steel used. Hardening is done in a state of the art vacuum-sealed furnace, after which rapid quenching is done to return the blade to room temperature in a few seconds. A cryogenic treatment is then done at -321 degrees Fahrenheit to enhance corrosion/stain resistance properties of the blade. Double tempering is then carried out to increase the overall toughness of the blade.
The blade is then sharpened using the ancient Honbazuke sharpening method. This method of sharpening was used by Japanese to sharpen sword and knives in the past. Each blade is honed to an angle of between 9.5 to 12 degrees per side by a skilled artisan. The specific acute allows the production of an incredibly sharp blade. The Japanese geometry used makes the SG2 chef knives accurate when it comes to preparing thin sliced sushi fishes to complex vegetable carving of animals or birds. With a Rockwell hardness rating of 63, you can be sure that the cutting edge will maintain its sharpness for long.
The knife’s handle is made of Karelian (Masur) Birch wood, a highly prized wood used for most fine furniture, veneers, inlaying and instrument making. The creamy white background is rippled with darker brown burls and tan “flames”. Originally found in Poland and Finland, this exquisitely decorated wood is the only option used for knife handles prepared to craft Faberge eggs. The handle is also D-shape to enhance comfort and reduce hand fatigue. Each of the Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knives is an expression of refined distinction, finesse and beauty that defines Japanese culture.
Pros of the Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
101-layer flower Damascus design with katana edge for maximum durability and scalpel –like sharpness
Sophisticated D-shaped traditional Japanese Karelian (Masur) Birchwood handle for enhanced comfort and reduced hand fatigue
Exclusive German Zwilling formula SG2 micro-carbide steel for excellent hardness
Blade is hand-honed using the ancient Japanese Honbazuke method to a 9.5 to12 degrees edge for razor-like sharpness
Cryodur ice-hardened blade to a Rockwell hardness rating of 63
Sturdy, strong and heavy knife with a wide blade and fine cutting edge
Perfectly-balanced, versatile and lightweight chef’s knife
8-inch blade makes an all-purpose cook’s knife for circular chopping and rocking motions
Mirror polished to reveal one of a kind Damascus flower pattern
Limited lifetime manufacturer warranty
Cons of the Miyabi SG2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
The only shortcoming of the SG2 8-Inch chef’s knife from Miyabi is its high price. However, the price is worth considering the many unique features you get from this luxurious all-purpose Japanese chef’s knife.
Miyabi Kaizen 8-inch Chef’s Knife
Elegant and sophisticated, the Miyabi Kaizen 8-Inch Chef’s knife brings together the artistry of traditional Japanese craftsmanship and advanced ice hardening techniques. The blade is crafted with a VG10 super steel core that is gracefully surrounded by a Damascus pattern that meticulously showcases the forged 65-layer steel construction. The result is a stunning blade that extends to the back of the black wooden handle and takes on the appearance of wood grain. Apart from its sleek appearance, the blade has an incredibly sharp cutting edge and makes clean cuts. However, since the blade is long and thin, it is ideal for slicing than chopping.
Just like the Birchwood series, the blade of the Kaizen series undergo a 4-step Cryodur hardening process for enhanced corrosion resistance, flexibility and superior strength. The edges are then hand-finished by skilled Japanese craftsmen using the ancient 3-step Honbazuke blade honing method to create a long lasting edge. The angle of each blade is honed to 9.5 to 12 degrees per side. The resulting blade is then optimally sharpened for outstanding edge retention.
The exceptional Miyabi chef knife blade is fitted to an incredibly stunning and durable handle made of black linen Micarta featuring a metallic end cap, red spacers and a mosaic pin. The handle is D-shaped for enhanced comfort and reduced hand fatigue. The Miyabi Kaizen 8-Inch Chef’s Knife comes limited lifetime manufacturer warranty and should last for a very long time if properly cared for. More importantly, it is advisable you avoid putting the knife of this quality in a dishwasher as the machine will damage it.
Pros of the Miyabi Kaizen 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
The VG 10 super steel core is protected by 64 layers of Damascus stainless steel forming a beautiful flower pattern
The blade is hardening using the Cryodur 4-step hardening process to enhance the properties of steel
D-shaped black linen Micarta handle for improved comfort and reduced hand fatigue
The 8-inch long, but thin blade makes this knife ideal for slicing cheese and steak
Rockwell rating of 63 allows for outstanding edge retention
Double tempered to enhance the toughness of the blade
Limited manufacturer warranty
It comes with a lower price when compared to the Miyabi Birchwood SG2 8-Inch Chef Knife
Cons of the Miyabi Kaizen 8-Inch Chef’s knife
The handle is not designed for left-handed chefs
Due to its long and thin blade, the Kaizen 8-inch knife is not suitable for chopping
Miyabi Fusion 8-inch Chef’s Knife
Created in collaboration with Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, the Miyabi Fusion 8-Inch Chef’s Knife is one of the TOP RATED Japanese chef’s knives. This remarkable cook’s knife perfectly combines the best of western and eastern craftsmanship, style and technology. The Miyabi chef knife Fusion series offers the sharpness of ancient Japanese cutlery but with blade styles ideal for western cutting techniques.
The Miyabi Fusion Chef knives have an authentic, thin-profile blade that is honed to a Katana edge similar to the famous Samurai swords. You will certainly turn to this knife to perform the basic trio of cutting motions of circular-actions, rocking and chopping. Its incredible sharpness and size makes it an all-purpose chef’s knife for slicing and dicing meats and fish, cutting fruits and vegetables as well as turning herbs into fine ribbons to add to braises and marinades. This knife is versatile, lightweight and perfectly balanced.
The blade of the Miyabi chef knife is crafted from a durable VG-10 super steel core that is sandwiched by 64 layers of softer Damascus steel, each rolled on top of each other to create a flower pattern. The VG-10 super steel produces a scalpel-like cutting edge that retains its sharpness for long. Just like the other Miyabi knives, the blade of the Fusion series is ice hardened using the Cryodur 4-step hardening process, giving the blade high corrosion resistance, flexibility and outstanding edge retention.
The Miyabi Fusion 8-inch Chef’s Knife features a triple-riveted, black, western style handle made from Duracon and full tang with attractive red accents. There is a one-inch clearance from the bolster to the edge of the knife to enhance safety of your hands when using it. The rounded spine and heel design are gentle on fingers and hands. The knife only means 0.4lbs, meaning you will not have a problem performing the range of circular rocking and chopping motions needed for most food preparation needs.
Pros of the Miyabi Fusion 8-inch Chef’s Knife
Triple-riveted western style handle with full tang and attractive red accents
Crafted from VG10 super steel encased by 64 layers of softer steels arranged on top of each other to create a beautiful Flower Damascus Design
Blade is ice hardened to a Rockwell hardness rating of 60 to enhance the properties of steel
Lightweight, versatile and perfectly balanced
Laser controlled final cutting edge
Hygienic, food-safe and extremely durable
Hand wash only
Cons of the Miyabi Fusion 8-inch Chef’s Knife
It cannot be put in a dishwasher
Miyabi Artisan SG2 8-inch Chef’s Knife
Handcrafted in Seki, Japan, the Miyabi Artisan SG2 Chef’s knife is the most indispensable of all knives. The knife starts off with the Tsuchime technique, crafted from three layers of SG2 super steel with a hammered finish to prevent foods from sticking to the blade. The blade is ice-hardened using the Zwilling J.A. Henckels Cryodur hardening process to give the steel excellent corrosion resistance, hardness for edge retention and flexibility. The blade is sharpened using the traditional three-step Honbazuke sharpening technique, which entails sharpening the blade on whetstones followed by mirror polishing on leather wheel. The Honbazuke sharpening technique was used over 1000 years ago to sharpen Samurai swords in Japan.
For outstanding performance, the Miyabi chef knife blade is honed by skilled artisan to an angle of 9 to 12 degrees on each side. This results to an incredibly sharp cutting edge. This superb blade is then fitted to a beautiful Cocobolo Rosewood Pakkawood handle with red spacers, mosaic accents and a stainless steel end cap with a logo that adds balance. The Miyabi Artisan 8-Inch Chef Knife only weighs 7.5 ounces, making ideal for performing most of the kitchen duties.
Pros of the Miyabi Artisan 8-Inch Chef Knife
Handcrafted in Seki, Japan using the 3 layers of SG2 super steel
Cocobolo Rosewood Pakkawood handle with a metallic end cap for a comfortable grip and added balance
Honed using the traditional Honbazuke process for a scalpel-like sharpness
Ice-hardened using the Cryodur hardening process to enhance the hardness, flexibility and corrosion resistance of the blade
Ergonomic design with a Damascus textured finish
Limited manufacturer lifetime warranty
Cons of the Miyabi Artisan 8-Inch Chef Knife
It is extremely fragile and break if it is accidentally dropped
Why You Should Buy a Miyabi Chef Knife
Miyabi knives are top quality chef knives and one of the most technologically advanced cutlery all over the world. The Miyabi chef knife is made with incredibly sharp blades that maintain their cutting edge for long. You will certainly be pleased about the less effort you will exert to slice and dicing ingredients. With their ultra comfortable grip and evenly balanced weight, these knives have become a vital tool for professional chefs around the world.