The Top 8 Japanese Knives
We have been making and taking orders on Japanese knives for a few years now. Based on the orders we’ve been getting below are the eight most popular Japanese knives and our guess on why they are popular…..
The Honesuki Knife
The Honesuki is referred to as the boning knife and is loved by those who are the directors at a BBQ. Funnily enough this blade is not the blade for cutting through bones (that's the Deba Knife) rather it is the knife that get's you around quickly and smoothly. It is for intricate cuts on meat, poultry or fish and is the perfect tool to quickly turn the chicken or fish into multiple pieces heading for the grill. Depending on where you are in the world this knife can replace or sit aside classic western filleting knives with the main difference being the western version is longer, slimmer and bendable where as the Honesuki knife is short, sharp, hard and precise. Take your pick. The Japanese Knife for boning called "The Honesuki Knife" comes in at number 8......
The Kiritsuke Knife
The Kiritsuke knife looks like either an elongated Bunka Knife or a Gyuto with a "K-tip". Either way, this Japanese knife has all purpose capability and has started to become a less common yet popular knife. The "K-tip" itself balances the use of the point of the knife while the long belly of the knife allows simple chopping and slicing of starchy vegetables like potatoes and pumpkins (much like a Bunka knife).
The Sujihiki Knife
The Sujihiki Knife is the master of the slicing domain. This Japanese knife is the equivalent as the carving knife however it relies on sharpness rather than serration. Given it is often used on poultry and fish this ensures cuts are smooth and swiftly sliced and refrain from crushing the protein. If you are looking for a showtime blade for Thanks Giving or Xmas the Sujihiki is the knife for you. The Sujihiki Knife takes number 6 in the Japanese knife countdown.....
The Deba Knife
The Deba Knife was one of the first modern day blades created by the Samurais who need new roles. At the time that holding swords in public became illegal a group of around 10,000 master sword makers needed a new home. They started crafting knives. One of the first uses of the Deba blade was chopping tobacco for export bu Portuguese traders. However, users of these knives soon found that the blade could do much more.
The Deba knife is a single beveled knife which can do almost anything however it's standout capability is it's raw power. The Deba has a thick blade (up to 5mm) and, with it's think belly, it can easily slice through the bone of fiosh or chicken. In addition it's sharp blade and core it can then move onto filleting (the only knife that does bone chopping then filleting. The Deba knife has a variety of lengths in 30cm increments (the bigger the fish you are cutting the larger the knife required).
This raw capacity to everything makes the Deba knife the number 5 knife in the Japanese top 8 count down.....
The Nakiri Knife
The Nakiri knife is the vegetable chopper. Literally the word "Na" means vegetables and Kiri means "cutter/chopper." Side on the Nakiri Knife could be easily confused with a meat cleaver however when you look down from above you will see the Nakri has a very slim spine all way down the blade. This makes the Nakiri knife ultra fast and smooth when slicing and chopping. If you are entering a onion or tomato chopping contents this blade will move much faster than any general purpose chef knife due to it's light weight and flat blade.
If you are a vegetarian, vegan or BBQ master who makes a salad on the side - the Nakiri is the blade that takes you to the next level.
Being the number 1 knife for vegetables the Nakiri knife finds it's way to number 4 in the Japanese knife countdown of the top 8 Japanese knives....
The Bunka Knife
The Bunka knife is an all purpose knife which looks like a tough version of the commonly used Santuko knife (we haven't included the Santuko knife in the top 8 as we chose between it and the Bunka).
Like it's all purpose compatriots the Bunka does just about everything. The K-tip on the end of the blade simplifies intricate work (like making little wholes in potatoes or taking the top off a strawberry) and makes this aggressive brute able to do dainty tasks.
On the contrast the blade also has a very thick spine so chopping down (usually using the heel of the knife and downward force) this blade can cut down through hard vegetables and even fish or poultry bones (but don't ruin your knife by using the blade on cow bones).
The Bunka knife is a relatively recent addition to the Japanese knife collection but it's brutishness and beauty has seen it be selected as the number 3 knife in the Japanese knife top 8 count down......
The Petty Knife
If the number 1 knife is Batman then the Petty Knife is Robin. He/She is the perfect partner to the knife below at number 1.
The petty knife is the knife which is small, light and very easy to use for all little tasks like trimming fruit peel, chopping or slicing small goodies for the kids lunch or even intricately cutting a grape or strawberry to take a little item and make it remarkable. The Petty knife is very similar to a chefs knife, Gyuto knife or paring knife and is often one of the most used knives in the kitchen.
The Petty knife is also the favorite knife of both the wives and mothers of both of the company founders and as a result the Petty knife has found it's way to number 2 in the Japanese top 8 knifes.
The Gyuto Knife
The Gyuto knife takes the number 1 position. Quite simply it is the knife that we make the most of and the knife which is the most commonly acquired.
The Gyuto knife was first made after the Japanese emporer legalised the consumption of beef. Literally, the Gyuto means "Cow Sword" however this blade is used more broadly - most probably the most broadly used all purpose knife.
The Gyuto knife is also commonly consumed as it is the closest knife to a western chef knife. The main difference with the Gyuto, when compared to to a chefs knife, is that it has a slightly slimmer spine and a half tang handle. This combination makes it considerable lighter and faster to use. The second difference which is immediately noticeable on using is that it is typically made with a higher carbon core. This basically leads to a tougher tip and blade edge which remains sharper for longer.
So when you buy a knife that is an impersonation of a highly common chefs knife - yet both lighter and sharper - your usually very happy. As a result of this the Gyuto Knife has become the number 1 and the most popular Japanese knife!