Shun Kitchen Knives

Stephanie Stiavetti
Contributor: Amy Hoover

Examples of Shun Kitchen Knives

Known for their superb blade strength, stain resistance, and incredible cutting performance, Shun kitchen knives are used by both professionals and discerning home chefs. Shun kitchen knives are some of the world's best cutlery; these knives are meant to last a lifetime!

Dominique Dobson, National Demonstrator Coordinator at Shun Cutlery, said, "Damascus technology, which gives our knives strength and durability," help make the knives "beautiful to look at and perform well in the hand."

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8" Hiro Chef's Knife

The 8" Hiro Chef's Knife is made for people who are both right- and left-handed. It features a double-beveled blade and a total of 65 layers of metal. The handle has an "inlaid mosaic Samuri family crest."

Dobson said when choosing knives, you should, "Hold them in the same way you hold a knife when you actually use it."

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6-1/2" Shun Nakiri

This knife is shaped in the traditional Japanese tradition, with a flat edge and straight hilt. This 6 1/2-inch super-sharp knife was designed expressly for chopping vegetables in the Japanese style. You can purchase it for around $150 at Amazon.

"The difference is all in what ingredients were used to make those knives," Dobson said. "That's why Shun uses the hardened Japanese metals we use."

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7" Chinese Vegetable Cleaver

Need to chop thick vegetables in style? This powerful tool will make short work of almost any job you put it to. Measuring an impressive 7 inches, the chef's cleaver is for serious cooks. It's about $240 at Amazon.

Find the right knife for the job by trying to "mimic the motion you use when cutting," said Dobson. "It's only through practicing how you cut that you will determine whether the knife fits your hand and whether you will be comfortable using the knife in your own kitchen."

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8" Kiritsuku Knife

A classic Kiritsuku knife is a must-have for someone who wants to prepare food in the traditional manner. This style of knife is what the professionals use in Japan. It's a multipurpose knife and costs about $170 at Amazon.

Dobson says one key to a good knife is that it will "hold its edge for a substantial time period." This knife has a 16-degree angle for cutting.

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Shima Steak Knife Set

Steak is a favorite for many Americans, making it essential have a great set of knives on hand for that purpose. The Shima Steak Knife set comes with four knives that feature curved blades, a corrosion-resistent finish, and flat handle. You can purchase it for about $200 at Amazon.

Another key to a good knife is that it can "produce clean slices without tearing your food" according to Dobson.

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Premier Starter Set

A three-piece starter set in the Premier line, this group includes a paring knife, utility knife, and chef's knife. The Premier line features a hammered finish meant to reduce drag. It's under $400 at Amazon.

"The difference is all in what ingredients were used to make those knives," Dobson said in reference to what materials go into a knife. "That's why Shun uses the hardened Japanese metals we use."

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Santoku Knife

This 5-1/2-inch Santoku is an all-purpose knife for slicing and chopping. This is one of the four recommended knife shapes to have in your kitchen. It runs about $135 at Amazon.

"The key shapes I would advise investing in are: a chef's knife (or Santoku, depending upon how you cut), a paring knife, a utility knife, and, if you will use it, a bread knife," Dobson said. "These four blade shapes can perform the vast majority of prep tasks in the kitchen."

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Classic 6" Ultimate Utility

Sixteen layers of steel and a beautiful PakkaWood handle make this utility knife a must-have for serious kitchen enthusiasts. The serrated blade is great as an all-around slicing workhorse, while the rounded tip makes it an ideal spreader. It costs less than $130 at Amazon.

"The D-shaped PakkaWood handles make them comfortable and easy to use, as well as moisture and heat resistant," Dobson said.

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Premier Carving Set

Impress your friends and relatives at Thanksgiving, Easter, and other special occasions when you cleanly slice through the turkey or ham without a hitch. The carving set features a 9.5" slicing knife and carving fork. The PakkaWood handles will make a stunning presentation. Get it at Amazon for around $300.

Dobson recommends practicing with your new knives. "After about two weeks of daily practice, what once felt awkward will feel like second nature," she said.

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4" Edo Paring Knife

The small 4" Edo paring knife is one that will allow you to work on vegetables and fruit without causing damage. The handle is crafted so you can work for a long time without experiencing pain or tiredness in your arm like other small knives. It's about $80 at Amazon.

While the price tag may seem high for a small paring knife, Dobson said, " The return on investment is simply higher when you purchase an item designed to last a lifetime."

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6" Gokujo Boning Fillet Knife

Preparing fresh fish, whether you caught it yourself or picked it up at the market, is quick with this boning knife. It's made to slice fish thinly as well as help remove bones. The special hammered tsuchime finish keeps the blade from getting coated in food pieces.

"Shun knives are sharper out of the box, holding an extreme 16-degree blade angle," Dobson said. "They stay sharp longer because of the exotic blade steels we use."

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9" Hiro Bread Knife

The bread knife is one of the four knives that Dobson recommends getting for your kitchen. This particular model features striations in the handle with a mosaic crest, a hammered tsuchime finish, and 65 layers of metal. It looks as good as it works. Pick it up at Amazon for about $300.

"I believe you only need one serrated blade out of the bunch, and for me it has to be a lower frequency serration, where my food will be cut and not torn," Dobson said.

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Premier Combination Honing Steel

Dobson said that one of the differences between a good quality knife and a low quality knife is that a high-quality one is "able to be re-sharpened, making your initial investment a lifetime investment."

Therefore, you'll want to pick up a good honing steel so you can keep your blades sharp. The one from Shun is only about $60 from Amazon.

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Butcher Block Set

If you're looking to make an investment in your cooking equipment, consider going all out and buying a set of knives with a butcher block. It will look great on any counter top. This modern-looking set is about $400 (Amazon) and includes the block along with a paring knife, Santoku knife, chef's knife, combination honing steel, and kitchen shears.

"Pick up three to four knives that you know you will use consistently," Dobson said. "These are the knives you can use for almost everything. Buy the best quality pieces you can afford. It is much better to get two knives that are designed to last a lifetime than to replace a lesser quality set of knives every few years." Shun knife owners know they have quality that will last.

Stephanie Stiavetti
Contributor: Amy Hoover
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Shun Kitchen Knives