Japanese petty knife

Japanese petty knife DEFAULT

Historically, petty and utility knives varied significantly in origin, shape, and use. As Josh Donald, owner of Bernal Cutlery in San Francisco and author of Sharp (2018), a guide to knives, sharpening, and cutting techniques, explains, the utility knife, sometimes called an “office knife,” originated in Europe. In its earliest incarnations, it was used to clean and process wild game, and it resembled something between a paring knife and a boning knife, with a narrow blade that was made from softer, thicker metals and curved slightly from heel to tip. For Western chefs, the utility knife was considered the perfect companion knife to a chef’s knife. Together, as Donald puts it, the two knives formed the ultimate “power couple” of both professional and home kitchens in Europe.

The petty knife is essentially the Japanese version of the utility knife. As Donald explains in his book, the petty knife first arose during the Meiji era (late 19th century), when Western cuisine and cutlery were introduced to Japan. While the Japanese already had their own existing knife styles, they developed the gyuto (Japanese-style chef’s knife) and petty knife in response to the chef’s knife and utility knife they saw in Western-led kitchens. (The word “petty,” according to Donald, is likely derived from the French word “petit,” meaning “little,” a nod to the fact that these knives were considerably smaller than the average chef’s knife.) Following Japanese conventions, the petty knife had a blade that was thinner and harder than the Western knives; the blade itself had a more “triangular” geometry, with a straight, not curved, edge that enabled the sort of up-and-down cutting many Japanese cooks prefer. And the blades themselves were often hand-finished to ensure the keenest edge.

Sours: https://www.cooksillustrated.com/articles/2842-petty-knives-versus-utility-knives-what-s-the-difference

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After years of preaching the all-you-need-is-a-chef’s-knife-and-a-paring-knife gospel, I find myself reaching for a petty knife—the red-headed stepchild of the cutlery drawer—more often than either of my old standbys. 

Sure, a 3" paring knife seems like a natural companion to your chef’s knife. But the 5" or 6" petty (a.k.a. utility) knife is nimble enough to accomplish the tasks of a paring knife—peeling potatoes, segmenting citrus, trimming brussels sprouts—and then some. It’s long enough to function as a boning knife, a fillet knife, even a chef’s knife. It’s the champion of the all-around: agile enough to make delicate work of veggies and sturdy enough to bone a chicken. It strikes the perfect balance between power and grace. 

Corey Milligan of NewWest Knife Works says he gives their petty knife to people he doesn’t know that well, since they’re guaranteed to find use for it, no matter how they cook. And with the groovy colored handles and sleek Japanese blade, they're able to spot it from a mile (or a few feet) away.

Sharp, huh?

Mercer Culinary Renaissance 5-Inch Forged Utility Knife

Sours: https://www.bonappetit.com/story/new-west-knife-works-petty-knife
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Shun DM-0702 Classic 7 inch Santoku Knife, Handcrafted in Japan, DM0702, Silver

Toijro DP Damascus 7-inch (180mm) Nakiri Knife

Miyabi Chef's Knife, 8-Inch, Birch/Stainless Steel

Yoshihiro Shiroko High Carbon Steel Kasumi Deba Japanese Fillet Butcher Chefs Knife 6.5inch (165mm) with Shitan Handle

Shun Classic 6-piece Slim Knife Block Set

Best Santoku
Shun DM-0702 Classic 7 inch Santoku Knife, Handcrafted in Japan, DM0702, Silver

Shun DM-0702 Classic 7 inch Santoku Knife, Handcrafted in Japan, DM0702, Silver

Best Nakiri
Toijro DP Damascus 7-inch (180mm) Nakiri Knife

Toijro DP Damascus 7-inch (180mm) Nakiri Knife

Best Gyuto
Miyabi Chef's Knife, 8-Inch, Birch/Stainless Steel

Miyabi Chef's Knife, 8-Inch, Birch/Stainless Steel

Best Deba
Yoshihiro Shiroko High Carbon Steel Kasumi Deba Japanese Fillet Butcher Chefs Knife 6.5inch (165mm) with Shitan Handle

Yoshihiro Shiroko High Carbon Steel Kasumi Deba Japanese Fillet Butcher Chefs Knife 6.5inch (165mm) with Shitan Handle

Best Set
Shun Classic 6-piece Slim Knife Block Set

Shun Classic 6-piece Slim Knife Block Set

Best Santoku: Shun Classic 7-Inch Santoku Knife

Knife making is an art that can only be perfected with long years of practice and dedication. That’s why, when I was looking for the Santoku that I prefer above all others, I chose Shun’s 7-inch blade.

Shun has been honing their knifemaking craft in Seki, Japan’s “city of blades”, for over 112 years. Every single one of their knives is painstakingly handcrafted, going through over 100 manufacturing steps before being packaged and sold

If you’ve never used a Santoku knife before, Shun’s Classic 7-Inch model is the perfect place to start. It’s one of the most well-balanced knives that I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. With every cut, Shun’s santoku seems to glide through the air, never fatiguing your hands or wrists.

Forged from high carbon stainless steel, this knife’s 16 layers ensure maximum durability and corrosion resistance. The forging and honing process makes it razor-sharp, with an edge that keeps well with minimal re-sharpening.

Pakkawood, a durable and lightweight wood and resin composite, makes up the comfortable handle for Shun’s santoku. It’s joined with an offset steel bolster for better balance and handling, making it even more ergonomic.

If I could only choose one Japanese knife to use in my kitchen, it would be a santoku. They’re one of the most versatile knives ever created, and can be used to slice and chop meat, fish, and vegetables with ease. 

And if I could only choose one santoku knife, I would go with this one from Shun. To me, it offers an ideal combination of quality, heritage, and versatility at a surprisingly affordable price.

Pros

  • Traditional Japanese craftsmanship
  • Razor sharp edge
  • Durable high-carbon steel construction

Cons

  • Jack of all trades is a master of none

Best Nakiri: Toijro 7-Inch Nakiri Knife

The nakiri knife is a uniquely Japanese addition to kitchen cutlery. Designed specifically for making precision cuts on vegetables, it’s a lightweight and easy to use knife that has become a staple in my kitchen.

Tojiro was one of the first companies to use high-carbon steel for their knives. High-carbon steel is now the industry standard metal, as it creates a stronger, sharper, and more durable blade.

In their 7-Inch nakiri knife, this high-carbon steel is mixed with low-carbon steel and folded 37 times. Once it’s been folded, this Damascus steel is laid over a thick cobalt alloy steel — creating a razor-sharp blade that’s lightweight and exceptionally durable.

One of my favorite parts about Tojiro’s nakiri is its large, centered bolster. Rather than weighing down the knife, this heavy bolster gives it greater balance and an easy straight-down slicing motion. If you’ve never cut tomatoes with a nakiri, you’re really in for a treat! These knives make picture-perfect vegetable slices with ease.

A light but durable micarta handle is studded with three steel rivets, further refining the Tojiro’s balance. The shape of the handle is about the only thing I don’t like about this knife, as I prefer a straight handle without a raised back edge. That’s personal preference, though, and anyone with smaller hands won’t be bothered by it at all.

In short: Tojiro’s nakiri knife makes it quick and easy to incorporate more vegetables into your cooking. It’s a work of master craftsmanship combined with the latest steel technologies, giving you the best of both worlds.

Pros

  • Made of top-of-the-line Damascus steel
  • Center bolster gives it excellent balance
  • Razor edge makes chopping vegetables a breeze

Cons

  • Raised back edge can be uncomfortable for people with larger hands

Best Gyuto: Miyabi 8-Inch Chef’s Knife

Though the santoku has achieved greater popularity in the United States, I’m actually partial to the gyuto, or Japanese chef’s knife. They feature longer and thinner blades than santoku knives, and can be used for an impressive variety of kitchen tasks. If your knife skills are well developed, the gyuto chef’s knife should be right up your alley.

Miyabi’s 8-inch gyuto is my Japanese chef’s knife of choice because of the exacting specifications to which it is made. An offshoot of the venerable German knife company Zwilling, Miyabi combines the best in traditional Japanese craftsmanship with German technology and attention to detail.

Made of a special steel alloy known as SG2, this gyuto is the hardest and sharpest knife on this entire list. Where most German knives reach around 57 on the Rockwell hardness scale, and many Japanese blades don’t top out over 61, Miyabi’s gyuto hits a remarkable 64!

This exceptional hardness and sharpness come at a price, though. Unless you’re a knife sharpening expert, you’ll have to take it to a professional when it loses its edge.

The birchwood handle on this chef’s knife combines form and function. It’s lightweight, looks great, and gives a comfortable grip that will naturally take on the shape of your hand over time. Balanced against the thin and lightweight blade, it creates an effortless slicing motion every time.

Overall, a gyuto style chef’s knife may not be the right choice for every home chef. But if you’re confident in your knife skills and want to experience the sharpest blade possible, Miyabi’s Japanese chef knife should be your next purchase.

Pros

  • Incredible sharpness
  • Beautiful birchwood handle

Cons

  • Will need to be professionally sharpened
  • Not great for beginners

Best Petty: Miyabi Utility Knife

Though often referred to as a utility or paring knife, the Japanese petty knife actually falls somewhere between the two. They resemble a smaller version of the gyuto, or chef’s knife, and can be used for any small cutting job.

Since I’m such a fan of Miyabi’s gyuto (featured above), it probably comes as no surprise that I love their petty knife, too. With a blade measuring in at 5.5 inches, it’s an ideal companion to the gyuto as part of a professional-quality Japanese knife set.

When I choose a petty knife, though, I’m not nearly as particular about buying top-notch quality as I am with a gyuto. Why? Because in most instances, you’ll be using a petty knife for small, undemanding jobs — and you won’t need maximum sharpness to create clean cuts.

That’s why I like Miyabi’s classic utility knife. It’s made with an ice-hardened carbide steel alloy that gives it excellent sharpness and edge retention. Since it’s easier to produce, though, this type of blade isn’t as expensive as more exotic steels. 

A synthetic handle with three rivets gives Miyabi’s petty knife good balance and grip. Combined with a small bolster, it’s comfortable shape makes paring, trimming, and slicing a pleasure.

Do you absolutely need a petty knife for your kitchen? Probably not. But if you’re looking for an elegant alternative to a paring knife that complements a Japanese knife set, Miyabi’s petty knife is the way to go. Combined with their gyuto, it creates a formidable duo that can handle almost any kitchen task.

Pros

  • Affordable and versatile
  • Great when paired with a gyuto

Cons

  • In-between size may be awkward for very small or very large hands

Best Deba: Yoshihiro Shiroko High Carbon Steel Kasumi Deba

Another little-known Japanese knife, the deba, is used similarly to a Western butcher’s knife. In the case of Yoshihiro’s Kasumi Deba, it can handle everything short of chopping through lamb, beef, or pork bones.

Ever since I used a deba knife to prepare a whole fish, I’ve kept one in my kitchen. Though they’re not as heavy as a traditional cleaver, their design makes them a much more versatile choice for preparing cuts of fish, poultry, and meat.

It starts with the deba’s pointed tip. When you’re handling meat or fish with smaller bones and sinews, a deba can be used with laser-like precision to create the cleanest cuts possible. Add a refined edge to the mix, and you can use a deba to make perfect filets and skinless chicken breasts — something a butcher’s knife could never do.

Yoshihiro’s deba knife is made of a generous amount of high carbon stainless steel, giving it a heft and sharpness not seen in other Japanese blades. The 6.5-inch blade tapers from top to bottom, giving it a precise cutting edge and hefty weight. The result? A knife that does most of the work of butchery for you.

Though they’re lesser known in the United States than big names like Shun or Miyabi, I’ve found Yoshihiro’s blades to be every bit as good. The company has been making knives for over 100 years, and doesn’t skimp on the quality of any component of their knives. They’re pricey, for sure, but I’m impressed with their finesse and balance.

Pros

  • Heavy enough for big butchering tasks
  • Refined enough for detailed deboning and skinning

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Not meant to cut through pork or beef bones

Best Set: Shun Classic 6-Piece Slim Knife Block Set

Are you ready to go all-in on Japanese kitchen knives? I know I am. As much as I love Western style knives, my favorite Japanese knives see just as much (or more) use in my kitchen. And with Shun’s Japanese knife set, you can get everything you need at a lower price than buying each knife individually.

Shun’s knives are widely regarded as some of the best Japanese blades on the market for good reason. In their Classic series, handcrafted Damascus steel is combined with lightweight pakkawood handles to create a set of knives admired by professional chefs.

In this 6-piece set, you’ll get three kitchen knives that will cover all your bases: a 3.5-inch paring knife, 7-inch santoku knife, and 8-inch gyuto chef’s knife. These are complemented by a honing steel and kitchen shears, and housed in a space-saving slim knife block.

At this point, I’d really like to stress the value of buying these Shun knives as a set. Assuming that you don’t have any of the blades in question, just buying the three knives individually would cost the same or more than the set. If you go for this package deal, you’re essentially getting a honing steel, kitchen shears, and handsome knife block for free.

My favorite part about getting a whole set of Shun knives is surprising, though: You won’t have to sharpen them. This isn’t because they won’t get dull, but because Shun offers excellent customer service.

Whereas you’ll be responsible for getting most Japanese blades sharpened at a cost to you, Shun offers free sharpening for all of their knives. As long as you own them, you can send your knives into the company, pay for shipping and handling, and have them expertly sharpened and sent back to you.

Pros

  • Full selection of Japanese knives at a great price
  • Free sharpening for life

Cons

  • Kitchen shears and honing steel may not be something you want

Other Brands and Knives to Consider

I truly believe that the knives listed above represent the best options to consider for each of their respective categories. Keep in mind, however, that I’m biased towards knives that I’ve personally had success with in the kitchen.

To get a fuller picture of the world of quality Japanese knives, I asked a few of my chef friends for their recommendations on other Japanese knife brands. Here are their suggestions:

  • Masamoto makes an excellent Damascus steel gyuto, and their 9-inch slicer knives are quite impressive for preparing sushi.
  • Kuma’s knives might be the most affordable way to get into Japanese knives, and have been a beginner’s knife for a handful of chefs. Even their Damascus steel gyuto is inexpensive.
  • Korin has a huge selection of Japanese knife styles, and their sharpening is top-notch. They represent around a dozen smaller Japanese knife brands through their online store.
  • Kamikoto offers a short line of knives made from Japanese Niigata steel which is naturally corrosion-resistant, and gives them excellent sharpness, durability, and edge retention.
  • Yoshihiro has been making Japanese knives for over 100 years, but they are still a relatively new name in the United States knife market. Their direct-to-consumer approach helps them offer a very affordable product.

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Japanese Knives

There are subtle but important differences between Japanese knives and, say, German knives. 

Because both types of kitchen knives were developed around regional food cultures, with certain expectations for how food is prepared. This led to differences in the variety of knives employed in Eastern and Western kitchens, as well as details of their construction.

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at how to choose the best Japanese kitchen knives for your home:

best japanese knives - buyers guide

Type of Knives

The types of knives employed in making Japanese dishes may look quite different at first glance, but the essential knives of both Western and Eastern cooking perform similar functions.

If you’re unfamiliar with Japanese knives, a santoku knife is the best place to start. It’s the most general-purpose knife in the Japanese kitchen, and can be used for a majority of cooking tasks.

From there, you’ll want to branch out into Japanese chef knives (gyuto) as well as paring and utility knives (petty). This combination of one large, extra-sharp blade and one small blade for precision cutting will cover 90% of your cutting needs.

After that, adding a nakiri knife will get you closer to the selection that professional chefs in Japan use. Nakiri are especially good for cutting vegetables, and are an excellent choice for anyone who prepares vegetarian meals.

Round that selection out with a deba kitchen knife for butchery, and you’ll be fully prepared with your selection of traditional Japanese knives!

Construction

The construction of Japanese knives follows in the footsteps of ancient sword makers. Even today, many of the production steps for a Japanese knife are taken directly from the forging techniques used for swords.

This long tradition of bladesmithing is why I look towards companies that have been making knives for decades, and avoid companies that have popped up only as recently as the last few decades. In the case of Japanese knives, it really does take generations of trial and error to produce the best quality blades.

Blade

Japanese knives have developed their stellar reputation in large part because of the steel used for their blades. Knife makers take two main approaches to the materials used in their blades:

  1. Folding high-carbon steel many times over, making an ultra-sharp edge.
  2. Folding alternating layers of high-carbon and low-carbon steel, creating what’s called “Damascus steel”.

Damascus steel takes much more time and effort to produce, and is more expensive because of it. It also has the benefit of creating a blade that’s more durable and able to take a better edge than plain steel.

As long as the Japanese knife you’re looking at uses at least high carbon steel in its production, it will make for a quality blade. Spring for Damascus steel if you want the absolute best.

Handle

Two types of handles dominate the world of Japanese knives: Natural wood, or synthetic polymers. Both provide a nearly identical balance for their knives, but will feel notably different in your hands. Pakkawood, a lightweight wood and resin composite, falls somewhere in the middle.

Natural wood handles are my personal preference, but they’re also considerably more expensive. For that reason, I recommend that anyone looking to buy the best Japanese knife for themselves pay more attention to the quality of the blade than the material of the handle. You’ll get more knife for your money that way, and have the opportunity to learn how to use your knife without worrying about damaging the wooden handle.

Maintenance

Compared to their Western style knife cousins, Japanese knives require more care and attention. 

The cost of the extra sharp edge of a Japanese knife is that they can be more difficult to sharpen. The hard steel is also more prone to chipping than Western knives. If you do happen to chip your knife, you’ll need to take it to a professional sharpener for refinishing.

Additionally, you’ll have to be especially careful to keep your Japanese blades dry at all times. Even a few drops of water left on the folded steel of a Japanese knife can discolor it, leading to damage over time.

If you’re serious about maintaining your Japanese kitchen knives in top condition, you’ll want to invest in a set of traditional Japanese sharpening stones, too. A two-sided sharpening stone like this one from King will allow you to hone your blade to a fine edge — but it will require quite a bit of practice to get it right.

Frequently Asked Questions About Japanese Knives

To round things out for this guide, let’s answer some of the most common questions that come up about Japanese knives:

best japanese knives - frequently asked questions

Are Japanese Knives Better than German Knives?

Solingen, Germany and Seki, Japan both have the honor of being known as their country’s “city of blades”. With blade making traditions spanning centuries, both German and Japanese knives are deserving of their reputations. And in my opinion, there’s no way to say that one is better than the other.

In short, both German and Japanese knives have their own advantages and disadvantages. Some chefs love the precision sharpness of Japanese blades, while others prefer chip- and stain-proof German steel. 

Overall, though, which type of knife is better will depend more on what you’re cutting. Japanese knives have the upperhand in most fish and vegetable preparations, while German knives can handle big chopping and butchery jobs with much greater ease. Either way, you’ll have a quality knife in your kitchen.

Advantages of Japanese Knives

More than anything, Japan’s knives are renowned for the sharpness of their blades. Combining complex forging methods with high-carbon steel, their knives can be sharpened to a degree that other knives envy.

The hardness of the steel used for Japanese blades also gives them greater edge retention. You’ll find yourself sharpening Japanese blades much less frequently than softer Western style blades.

Drawbacks of Japanese Knives

The same hardness of the steel that gives Japanese blades their superior performance gives them a serious drawback as well. If they encounter an especially hard surface — like a thick bone, or a stone cutting board — Japanese blades are at a great risk of chipping. When this happens, you’ll need to have it professionally refinished.

Additionally, Japanese steel is more prone to tarnishing than Western steel. You’ll need to be especially careful to keep water off of your blade, and store it in a cool, dry place.

My Recommendations

Choosing the best Japanese knives for your kitchen can revolutionize your cutting, slicing, and chopping experience. I really can’t recommend Japanese blades highly enough, and would consider my kitchen incomplete without at least one.

If you want to test the waters with a single Japanese knife, the Shun Classic 7-Inch Santoku Knife is the way to go. It’s a versatile blade that’s a perfect introduction to traditional Japanese craftsmanship.

Thank you for taking the time to study up on these fine blades. I hope the information here serves you well, and that you can find a place in your kitchen for one of these beautiful knives!

Sours: https://kitchenambition.com/best-japanese-knives/
JAPANESE KNIFE - First Time Japanese Knife Buyers Guide

Japan’s long-standing tradition of crafting high quality blades extends beyond katanas. The country produces some of the world’s best kitchen knives. Professional chefs and home cooks alike tend to lean either German or Japanese when it comes to their blades, with Japanese knifemakers leaning more on specialization and task-specific designs. From the gyuto to the yanagi, these are the eight most important Japanese kitchen knife styles to know.

Deba


Deba knives are sturdy, somewhat petite blades used primarily for working with fish. Fishermen and fish mongers use deba knives to scale, behead and filet fish without damaging the flesh, and the blade is strong enough to cut through thin or weak bones. Don’t try to chop through thicker bones, however, or you’ll risk damaging the knife. Instead, opt for the yo-deba knife, which is more adept for cutting through bones and shellfish.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Global Deba Knife ($95): Global knives are funky. The holey, hollow handle makes the knife lightweight, and the single piece of Cromova stainless steel is tough and corrosion-resistant.
Goh Umanosuke Yoshihio Kasumi Deba Knife ($125): This is a single-bevel deba knife made for right-handed people. The Yasugi steel is native to Japan, and the handle is made of magnolia wood.
Kajiwara Blue #1 Kurouchi Deba ($165): This knife looks like it’s done its fair share of chopping off fish heads. That worn-in look is due to the kurouchi finish, which protects the carbon steel blade from corrosion.

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Gyuto


Gyuto knives have impressively sharp tips for precision cutting, versus softer-tipped santoku knives. The original purpose of the gyuto knife was to cut and break down beef (gyuto translates to “cow sword”) but they’re good for chopping, slicing and mincing basically anything.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Akira-Saku White #1 Funayuki Gyutou ($125): The carbon steel is graded White Steel #1, which means it’s made with more carbon than a carbon steel of grade White Steel #2. The added carbon makes the blade harder, which can be sharpened to a finer, but also more brittle, edge.
Global 8-inch Chef’s Knife ($159): A durable, interesting-looking knife that is always on sale for nearly half-off (around $85, usually).
Sakai Takayuki Damascus Hammered VG-10 Gyuto ($160): Japanese knife makers pride themselves on their handles nearly as much as their blades. This knife’s octagonal handle is a mix of keyaki and mahogany, and the blade features 33 layers of Damascus patterning.

Nakiri


With its rectangular blade, nakiri knives resemble western-style cleavers. Unlike cleavers, nakiri knives are too thin to cut through animal bone and are typically used for chopping vegetables. The nakiri knife can produce ultra-fine cuts through a guillotine cutting motion (sometimes called the “push-pull” cut) rather than a rocking action.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Kotobuki Teruhisa Nakiri ($20): You get what you pay for, but Kotobuki’s nakiri knife is surprisingly efficient and sharp for a $20 pickup.
Miyabi Hibana Nakiri ($180): The 49-layer Damascus patterning is sure to draw in knife shoppers, but the knife’s ability to seamlessly cut through a veritable field of vegetables is the main selling point.
Kintaro Aogami Super Kurouchi Nakiri ($210): Yoshimi Kato, a licensed craftsman based out of Fukui, Japan, hand forges, grinds and finishes every Kintaro-branded knife. The nakiri’s blade is a combination of carbon steel and stainless steel, so you get the benefits of carbon steel minus maintenance and reactivity to food.

Petty


The Japanese petty knife is essentially a smaller version of the Japanese gyuto knife, perfect for small tasks like peeling produce, creating decorative cuts and completing other delicate tasks. It’s basically a Japanese paring knife, but a little bigger.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Seki Petty Knife ($17): Seki, Japan is known for its knife production, much like Sabae, Japan is known for its output of high quality sunglasses. These are cheap and get the job done without much fuss.
Kyocera Innovation Ceramic Kitchen Knife ($40): Kyocera’s patented ceramic blade is meant to be more durable than standard ceramic.
Shun Classic 6-inch Utility Knife ($70): Shun is one of few Japanese knife manufacturers that’s seen success in the American market. Its petty knife has a lightweight handle that makes for easier control when working on precise cuts.

Santoku


Santoku knives may be the most common style of Japanese knife to make headway in western kitchens. This style of knife is as versatile as the gyuto knife and chef’s knife, but typically shorter in length and feature a straighter edge and less sharp tip. The term santoku translates to “three virtues,” which either represents meat, fish and vegetables or chopping, slicing and dicing.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Henckels Forged Premio Hollow Edge Santoku Knife ($35): It’s not made in Japan it’s not made with Japanese steel, but Henckels’ German-inspired knives are still a great value for amateur cooks. Its santoku knife also features dimples so wet foods slip off the blade when chopping.
Global G-48 7-inch ($85): Santoku knives rarely run longer than 7-inches. The Global santoku knife maxes out that standard and does so with its hardwearing Cromova 18 stainless steel.
Bob Kramer by Zwilling 7-inch Santoku ($200): Zwiling’s collaboration with Bob Kramer produced a line of knives signed off by the legendary bladesmith you can actually buy.

Sujihiki


Sujihiki knives are comparable to the common carving knife and can be used for the same tasks. The long thin blade glides through protein without having to saw back and forth. The sujihiki knife is also a more approachable version of the yanagi knife (more on that later), which is used for slicing sashimi.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Kanetsugu Molybdenum Sujihiki ($42): If you’re not carving meat very often, you probably don’t want to drop stacks on a knife that carves meat. This one is under $50 and made of molybdenum vanadium, a stainless steel with a reputation for being cheap, sharp and durable.
Sakai Takayuki Damascus Hammered VG-10 Sujihiki ($188): Sakai’s 9-inch blade offers enough length to cut meat in one fell swoop, minimizing friction.
Yoshihiro Mizu Yaki Black Finish Blue Steel #1 Kurouchi Sujihiki ($190): Blue Steel #1 refers to the added carbon content in the steel, making for better edge retention and durability.

Usuba


Usuba knives may look like the nakiri knife, but are recommended for expert knife users. The usuba knife is a single-bevel knife, which means only one side of the knife is sharp. Because it has a single bevel, usuba knives come in either left-handed or right-handed options. These knives require more precision than cutting with a nakiri knife, and inexperienced knife users are more likely to injure themselves without proper training.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Masahiro Seki Japan Usuba ($63): Masahiro’s usuba is made of yellow steel, which some might deem an inferior steel. But the knife is made in Seki, Japan, and it’s hard to find a crappy knife from there.
Shun Pro 6-1/2-Inch Usuba Knife ($165): Shun owners can attest to the brand’s commitment to making superior knives. The Shun Pro line of knives are for those who take cooking seriously, and the knife features high-carbon VG-10 steel, pakkawod handles and a graffiti-etched blade.
Yoshihiro Shiroko High Carbon Steel Kasumi Edo Usuba ($220): Cooks who are willing spend over $200 on a usuba knife better know how to use one. This one from Yoshihiro will help cooks get those signature vegetable sheets.

Yanagi


Unless you’re a sushi chef, you probably don’t need a yanagi knife, but they’re cool enough to want anyway. Used for slicing sashimi, the yanagi knife is a single-beveled knife that makes delicate and precise cuts. The knife’s fine edge is dangerously sharp so it should be reserved for those who have spent years learning how to use it.

Three to Consider (From Left to Right)
Global G-11 Yanagi Sashimi Knife ($95): If you’ve picked up a recent sushi-making hobby, Global’s ultra-sharp yanagi knife is a great pick for cutting perfect slices of fish without butchering it.
Sakon Molybdenum Yanagi ($100): Get Sakon’s yanagi knife if you’re worried you can’t maintain one of the more expensive options. The molybdenum vanadium is still a great choice of steel and you won’t be upset with the results.
Sukenari White Steel 2 Yanagi ($290): The Sukenari yanagi knife is sharp. We wouldn’t be surprised if Jiro gave it a thumbs up. MTC Kitchen, the store selling the knife, writes that “the initial sharpening is generally headache-free.”

Tyler ChinTyler Chin is Gear Patrol’s Associate Staff Writer.

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Knife japanese petty

  • Karel Caldr

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2016/04/04

    Japanese Petty knife [Maboroshi]
  • Ian Poy

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/08

    This is the most indispensable knife in my collection. I use it for just about any kind of task.

    Japanese Petty knife [Maboroshi]
  • Francois Theriault

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/07

    Couteaux exceptionnels, mon meilleur investissement en cuisine.

    Japanese Petty knife [Maboroshi]
  • Joeri Timmermans

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/06

    Great knife!

    Easy to sharpen, holds it's edge great!
    Cheers!

    Japanese Petty knife [Maboroshi]
  • John Ridgway

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2017/08/22

    This is a beautiful knife, the rough forged pattern on one side looks to me like a river running along the edge of a forest. I was surprised how great this knife feels in the hand so balanced and so sharp. Practical handmade beauty.

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • Vasilis Maniatis

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2016/03/17

    Paring knife nashiji 150mm with octagonal handle.write on the knife the

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • Adam

    Score:★★★★

    Date:2015/11/09

    I purchased this 150 mm petty almost a year ago as an inexpensive way to experience handmade knives. All my previous knives were french, japanese, and german production.

    I reach for it whenever my larger knives feel too cumbersome or my cutting board is crowded. It can easily handle anything up to large potatoes and onions, and is perfect for shallots, garlic, and other small tasks, including boneless meats.

    The blade has a very pleasing rustic look, yet it is wonderfully ground and tapered for performance. Very thin at the edge, but with just enough body behind it to feel solid. The exposed carbon edge has become a grey-blue color that contrasts against the stainless in a very pleasing way. It sharpens easily, and stays sharp far longer than it should, especially if stropped occasionally. The initial edge was very sharp, but had areas of very small chipping, which I quickly fixed on a 4000 stone. No problems of any kind since.

    The (western style) handle is a bit too rustic. The spine is below the level of the top of the handle enough to let food particles stick in, making cleaning more of a chore. It is also visually distracting. That said, the handle is made from surprisingly nice Indian Rosewood (I believe) and feels good in the hand. I was worried it felt too small at first, but in use it provides the knuckle clearance I need, and the easy cutting of the blade does not require a wood chopping grip.

    Overall, this knife does everything it should, and is just a better handle away from full marks. Thinking about it now though, I've had almost a year to fix or replace the handle and haven't. I probably never will either (though it is worthy of something nicer). I'll probably buy another one too, because I haven't seen or used anything that worked so well for the price.

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • Stephen Layne

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/08

    I use this knife more often than I expected. It is easy to keep sharp, and the size is perfect for small jobs.

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • Steven Playford

    Score:★★★★

    Date:2015/11/07

    I bought the 150mm, great handmade blade, at a great price. Basic western handle, If you want a nicer one mabroishi no meito range offers that upgrade. Will order again.

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • John O'Connor

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/07

    I purchased the 150mm Nashiji Paring knife for my wife to use daily in her dinner preparation. Both she and I love the feel and balance of this knife. It came very sharp and held the edge a very long time. I find the steel to be easy to sharpen and a few strokes on a leather strop after use keeps the edge in perfect shape. I bought this knife after purchasing my 240mm Nashiji Gyuto last year that also is a work of art and a real workhorse in the kitchen. The knife arrived in perfect condition and was beautifully packaged with care instruction and micro fiber towel. I highly recommend this knife.

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • Richard Miller

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2015/11/06

    An amazing knife by an amazing knife maker, sharp, balanced, beautiful, a work of art!

    Japanese Petty knife [Nashiji]
  • David. G

    Score:★★★★★

    Date:2020/01/01

    In 2014 I bought the 120mm denka.out of the box it was extremely sharp.but after some time I decided it needed sharpening,but I was not skilled and used an adjustable angle guide which I used for all of my knives giving a v edge.I found that this was not good for this knife and after trying(for much too long)I had ground alot of steel away and became upset.so put the knife away realizing that I need to learn freehand sharpening.
    I am still learning to sharpen but once I made a convex edge on the knife there was no more chipping of the edge. I was so happy and the denka is now one of my most used knives,and will even cut through pumpkin skin without rolling or chipping the edge.the little of the hard steel left has become stained but has never rusted.if only I had learned to sharpen earlier...So I would like to say thank you Mr Teruyasu for the craftsmanship and skills that goes into the making of these knives and I will still have many years of use from it
    Regards David

    Japanese Petty knife [Denka]
  • Sours: https://www.teruyasu.net/products/petit.html
    Why Your Next Knife Should be a Petty Knife

    I just feel compelled to tell you that yours is the most ridiculously informative site of this nature I have ever come across.

    Mark is great at answering questions for knife nuts of all levels. His service is second to none. Really appreciate the time he puts into every email as well as the free forum he hosts.

    Great experience working with Chef Knives to Go. Quick delivery, and they are great about returning emails. I'm actually waiting on my second knife from them. I'm sure there will be more to come.

    Very grateful such a dedicated and informative group of people provide excellent steel at competitive prices with superior customer service! A million thank yous!

    Great service and quick shipping. Best selection of Japanese knives around. I recommend this site to all of my fellow culinary professionals!

    Always the best. Quick shipping, description matches what is delivered and the price, you can't beat them. I always come here to order anything I might need for the kitchen and I am never disappointed.

    My go to company for kitchen gear. Awesome selection of knives and tools. Super fast shipping. Never had a problem and questions about all products are answered quickly. Great customer service.

    Customer TestimonialSours: https://www.chefknivestogo.com/petty-knives.html

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    We occasionally link to goods offered by vendors to help the reader find relevant products. Some of these may be affiliate based, meaning we earn small commissions (at no additional cost to you) if items are purchased. Here is more about what we do.

    The petty, or utility knife is a smaller general-purpose tool that’s used for a variety of kitchen tasks – and it’s so versatile, it’s one that can quickly become your go-to choice for daily tasks.

    Deft, with a thin, agile blade, their compact size makes them wonderfully nimble and easy to maneuver. This agility makes then useful for carving, mincing, peeling, and slicing a variety of fruits, herbs, and vegetables and for delicate tasks such as creating an intricate garnish.

    A favorite tool when precision cuts are needed, it can be used with equal ease in the hand, like a parer, or on the cutting board for light chopping duties.

    The Best Best Petty and Kitchen Utility Knives

    Bottom Line Up Front: Our Top 3 Recommendations

    We spent over $1000 gathering up and testing those models which we felt we could recommend to our readers. We wanted to select one each with a western “yo” handle and a traditional “wa” handle as some folks prefer one or the other. And then we wanted one additional “budget” recommendation.

    That being said, we could heartily recommend any of the models that we tested. Differences come down to fit and finish choice and the choice of alloys that have been used. Without further ado, here are our top three choices:

    Best Petty Knife With a Western Style Handle: Enso HD Hammered Damascus

    Made with a beautiful hammered blade for both aesthetics and to promote food release, this Enso HD also features and etched Damascus layers over the top of super sharp full-tang VG10 steel blade. The handle is western in design with some Japanese influence. Rather than being flat, it’s rounded and fitted with black canvas micarta scales for a for a comfortable grip and durability. The polished stainless end cap further adds to the beauty and strength of this finely crafted blade.

    Check Prices on Amazon or Read Our Review Below

    Best Petty Knife With a Japanese Wa Style Handle: Yoshihiro AUS-10 Steel

    For those that love the octagonal handles of traditional Japanese kitchen knives, this offering from Yoshihiro is a great choice. The blase is crafted from AUS-10 stainless steel meaning that it is strong and retains its edge without being too brittle. And it’s easier to sharpen than many other stainless alloys. The Wa handle is made of rosewood and locks into your hand and provides great indexing so you know exactly where you are cutting.

    Check Prices on Amazon or Read Our Review Below

    Best Economical Petty Knife: Tojiro DP

    Tojiro has long been a great resource for low cost but high quality Japanese kitchen knives. Their petty/utility knife offering is no exception. Crafted of VG10 stainless steel with no additional cladding or finishes, this this blade offers the same performance as other offerings but without the cost of extra finishing work. The handle is made up a durable and utilitarian black reinforced laminated wood material. A great choice for those that want above average usability without the flair.

    Check Prices on Amazon or Read Our Review Below

    What to Look For

    In Japanese cutlery, the traditional petty blade has a single-grind cutting edge, but many of today’s manufacturers also produce them with a V-grind, or double bevel edge – which makes them suitable for either left or right-handed use.

    Top down view of all 9 petty and kitchen utility knives we tested. The blades are on a maple cutting board surface.

    Similar in application to a Western utility knife, the blade length ranges from 3.5-8 inches, with a height at the heel of 1-1.5 inches. And the longer the blade is the better it will be for board work, but the extra length does make it less nimble for hand-held work.

    With many of the Japanese petties, models still have the traditional round, hexagon, or D-shaped ‘wa’ handles. On others, the handle has been hybridized with a Western style, or ‘yo’ handle – ergonomically contoured for comfort, often with a bolster, and riveted to a full tang for extra strength and stability.

    Ideal for boning small cuts of meat or poultry, garnishes, mincing herbs or mirepoix, peeling fruit, trimming veggies, or slicing salad ingredients, they can also be used to intricately carve or stylize foods for elegant presentations or garnishes, and for bigger tasks such as meal preparation.

    In-Depth Reviews of Our Favorite Petty and Utility Knives

    1. Enso HD Hammered Damascus Petty

    The Enso HD hammered Damascus petty knife is a beautiful tool of superb balance and agility that features excellent cutting performance and a traditional wa-shaped handle.

    An Enso HD Hammered Damascus 4.75-inch Petty Utility Knife on a maple cutting board.

    A forged cutting core of VG10 steel, a high-carbon stainless alloy, brings favorable traits such as outstanding sharpness and extended edge retention. And 36 layers of Damascus cladding overlay and support the core, adding qualities such as corrosion, rust, and stain resistance plus a distinctive, flowing pattern above the cutting edge.

    Close up of the hammered and Damascus finish as well as the laser etched logo on the Enso HD petty knife.

    Blades are then hand-hammered and polished for a tsuchime finish that adds rustic aesthetics while improving food-release properties by reducing drag and friction.

    The blade is double-beveled in a tight 12 degrees for an exquisitely fine cutting edge that’s suitable for both right or left-handed use.

    A human hand grasped the blade of the Enso HD Hammered Damascus Petty Utility Knife to show the black canvas micarta handle detail and polished end cap.

    A handle of black, canvas micarta has a traditional wa shape and gives the look and feel of wood, but without any shrinkage or cracking. Made of pressed canvas and resin, micarta is well known for its easy care and long-lasting durability.

    Enso HD Hammered Damascus 4.75-inch Petty (Utility) Knife via Amazon

    And with a Western touch, it’s attached to the full tang with three stainless steel rivets and finished with a seamless bolster and end cap for lively balance, strength, and stability.

    The Enso has the following dimensions:

    • Blade length is 4.75 inches
    • Overall length is 9.25 inches
    • It measures 1 inch at the heel
    • And it weighs just 2.6 ounces

    Handcrafted in Seki City, Japan (a city famous for knife makers – large and small), the Enso comes with a lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials or workmanship.  Also available in a 6-inch size.

    This petty knife has rustic charm, it’s light and deft to use, and it has a superior cutting edge you’ll love for nuanced hand or board work.

    Constructed of high-quality components, the first-rate steel and comfortable handle are matched by the skillful fit and finish that makes this tool suitable for the home or commercial kitchen. A sweet blend of the best of Eastern and Western features.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    2. Yoshihiro Petty Utility with Saya Cover

    For something with traditional appeal, the Yoshihiro 6-inch petty utility knife features a lovely handcrafted wa handle of natural shitan wood, a blade of high-carbon stainless steel, and a protective saya cover.

    Top down view of the Yoshihiro Stain-resistant Inox Aus-10 Steel Ice Hardened Petty Utility Knife on a maple wooden cutting board.

    Made from AUS10 stainless steel, this middle-range alloy is a popular choice for its many beneficial qualities – it’s easily sharpened, durable, rust and stain resistant, has good edge retention, and it’s usually more modestly priced than some of the exotic alloys.

    The cutting edge is V-ground in a tight 11 degrees per side for precision cutting, and without a bolster, the entire cutting edge is accessible for sharpening.

    Close up of the Japanese Kanji script on the Yoshihiro Stain-resistant Inox Aus-10 Steel Ice Hardened Petty Utility Knife.

    Complementing the blade is an octagonal wa handle of rich shitan (zhitan) rosewood, finished with an end cap and handle bolster of ebony for extra toughness and durable longevity. Comfortable and well-balanced, the shape makes is suitable for left or right-handed users.

    Yoshihiro Inox Stain-resistant Aus-10 Steel Ice Hardened Petty Utility Knife

    And a protective wooden saya is also included. Made of magnolia wood, the sheath provides complete protection for the blade and adds an attractive presentation detail.

    The Yoshiro specs are:

    • Blade length is 6 inches
    • Overall length measures 11 inches
    • Heel height is approximately 1.25 inches
    • Weight is 3.2 ounces

    Exceptionally thin and light, the small, nimble Yoshiro boasts excellent sharpness and edge retention making it suitable for small jobs requiring dexterity, or larger peeling and slicing tasks.

    Perfect for cooks who enjoy using a thin, razor-sharp blade or those who enjoy the traditional Eastern aesthetics and construction.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    3. Tojiro DP Petty/Utility

    Tojiro is well-known for quality blades made of top-notch steel at affordable prices. And the DP 6-inch petty knife continues the tradition with its superb sharp edge, agile performance, and comfortable Western handle.

    The Tojiro DP Petty Utility Knife resting on maple wooden surface.

    Crafted from VG10 stainless steel, the forged core is masterfully processed for extreme sharpness, long-lasting edge retention, and easy maintenance – and, it’s durable enough to handle the serious workloads found in professional kitchens.

    Close up of the laser Tojiro logo etched onto the blade.

    The hard core is overlaid with 13 layers of a softer chrome/steel alloy that makes sharpening easier, adds corrosion, rust, and stain resistance, and stabilizes blade integrity. And the cutting edge is ground in a double bevel for right or left-handed use.

    Close up up the handle detail on the Tojiro DP Petty Utility.

    An ergonomic handle is engineered for a comfortable grip and is constructed of reinforced laminated material, or eco-wood. Made from recycled wood that’s pressed with resin, eco-wood has less cracking, shrinkage, and warping than standard wood and outstanding durability – plus, it’s environmentally friendly as well.

    Tojiro DP Petty/Utility Knife via Amazon

    It’s securely anchored to a full tang with three stainless steel rivets that gives stability, and along with the smooth bolster transition, aids dexterity.

    The Tojiro DP has the following specs:

    • A blade of 5.9 inches
    • 10.25 inches overall length
    • Heel height is approximately 1.25 inches
    • It weighs 3.4 ounces

    Made in Japan, it comes with Tojiro’s lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials and workmanship.

    Deft, agile, and seriously sharp, the Tojiro DP is perfect for smaller chopping duties on a board or delicate hand-held work.

    It also boasts high quality fit and finish, with smooth surfaces, a nicely transitioned bolster, and a durable cutting edge – top-notch value for daily household or professional workloads.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    4. Misono UX10 Petty

    Misono is another Japanese brand that’s expanded into the Western market. And their petty knife is a hybrid that features an asymmetrically ground cutting edge of stain resistant steel for a superbly sharp and nimble tool.

    The Misono UX10 5.9 Inch Petty Knife with the blade slanted upwards and to the right on a maple butcher block.

    The forged blade and tang are crafted from an alloy called UX10. Hard, resistant to oxidation, stains, and wear, it’s also durable and keeps a sharp edge better than most softer steels. It is not completely stainless should you abuse it and leave food stuck on it for hours. But you get an easier to sharpen blade with superb edge retention that “feels” more like a carbon blade on water stones and in use.

    Close up of a laser printed Misono UX10 logo on the blade.

    Tough and resilient, it has a keen, precision edge ground to a 70/30 break favoring right-handed users, which allows for a finer cutting edge that ones with a 50/50 grind.

    The Misono UX10 5.9 Inch Petty Knife with the blade slanted downwards and to the right on a maple cutting board.

    A contoured handle of sturdy black pakkawood provides slip-free comfort and is attached to the full tang with three stainless steel rivets for enhanced stability and strength. Pakkawood is a water-resistant wood/resin composite commonly used for its outstanding toughness and resistance to stains and wear.

    Misono UX10 Petty 5.9″ (15cm) via Amazon

    And a unique nickel silver bolster balances out the weight of blade and handle for comfortable maneuverability.

    The Misono dimensions are as follows:

    • The blade length is 6 inches
    • Overall length is 11.5 inches
    • Heel height is 1.25 inches
    • It weighs only 2.8 ounces

    Made in Japan, it comes with Misono’s lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials or workmanship. The asymmetrical grind favors right hand users. This means the grind is flatter on the left and more acute on the right. This can be changed to standard grind or even reversed by somebody with a set of water stones and knowledgeable on knife sharpening techniques.

    Lightweight, deft, and with a long-wearing edge, the Misono petty adds convenience for peeling, slicing, or any delicate work as well as light chopping duties.

    The steel provides a hard and sharp cutting edge, but also has superb stain resistance and is also easy to re-sharpen. Well-suited for professional or home use.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    5. Shun Kanso Utility

    In a stripped-down profile, the 6-inch Shun Kanso utility knife features high-grade Japanese steel in a minimalist design – Kanso being the principle of simplicity, anything considered non-essential has been eliminated.

    The 6-inch Shun Kanso utility knife on a wooden cutting board showing the entire blade and handle

    The blade and tang are forged from a single piece of AUS10A steel – a high-carbon, vanadium stainless alloy known for its hardness, tensile strength, and toughness.

    With a fine grain, the sharp edge has been hand ground in a double bevel to 16 degrees for precise left or right-handed work.

    Close up of the blade of the Shun Kanso Utility Knife. The blade is on a maple wooden tabletop.

    The handle scales are crafted of tagayasan, or iron sword wood – chosen for its density, durability, and warm beauty. Skillfully angled, it provides the natural contours needed to accommodate a chef’s pinch grip for perfectly controlled cutting.

    Close up of the handle, full tang, and lanyard hole on the Shun Kanso Utility Knife.

    Attached to the full tang with two stainless steel rivets, the tang and handle are well-balanced for stability and deft hand-control. And in a further nod to simplicity, the clean profile is bolster-less.

    The matte, heritage blade finish helps to hide scratches and lends a rustic look that ages beautifully.

    Shun SWT0701 Kanso 6-Inch Utility Knife via Amazon

    The Shun’s measurements are as follows:

    • Blade length is 6 inches
    • Overall length is 10.25 inches
    • Heel height is close to 1.5 inches
    • Weight is 2.75 ounces

    Made in Japan, it comes with Shun’s lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials and workmanship.

    Shun also offers free sharpening for as long as you own the knife. And they recommended hand-washing with warm, sudsy water and prompt drying with a clean, soft towel.

    Sleek and lean, the multi-purpose Shun Kanso has a light, deft feel that’s easily controlled. And with the sharp, tough blade, it’s a natural a stylizing garnishes as well as chopping, peeling, and slicing.

    Minimal in design, it delivers effective, efficient performance without the bells and whistles.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    6. Norisada Hammered Damascus Petty with Saya Cover

    Norisada is another brand that utilizes the best of Japanese techniques combined with Western features for beautiful, highly efficient tools. Like this 5-inch petty knife with its hammered, Damascus blade, handsome mahogany handle, and protective saya cover.

    Norisada Hammered Damascus Petty Knife on a maple cutting board.

    Forged from a billet of stainless VG10, its many outstanding characteristics include ease of sharpening, edge retention, sharpness, and decent toughness for a high-carbon steel.

    The hard core is covered with 32 layers of Damascus cladding that envelops and protects the core with corrosion, rust, and stain resistant alloys and leaves a unique, layered pattern along the cutting edge.

    Close up of the blade on the Norisada Hammered Damascus Petty Knife showing the Japanese Kanji Engraving

    The finish is then hand-hammered – adding an appealing artistry as well as small dimples that create air pockets, reducing friction and preventing foods from sticking. And a V-grind cutting edge makes it suitable for left and right-handed use. A Japanese Kanji maker’s mark is engraved into the blade.

    Close up of the handle section of the Norisada Hammered Damascus Petty Knife. Background is a medium toned wooden surface.

    The premium Western-style handle is hand crafted from natural mahogany and features a lightly contoured shape for ergonomic comfort. It’s attached to the bolstered full tang with three stainless steel rivets for noticeable stability, strength, and balance. Fit and finish is impeccable.

    Norisada Hammered Damascus Petty Chef’s Knife 5-Inch & Saya Cover

    The included saya cover is also made of mahogany and provides complete blade protection – and also makes an impressive presentation for gift giving!

    Weight and measurements of the Norisada are as follows:

    • Blade length is 5.25 inches
    • The overall length is 11 inches
    • Heel height is 1.5 inches
    • It weighs only 2.5 ounces

    Made in Japan, it comes with a lifetime warranty to be free of material or workmanship defects.

    The Norisada petty knife is lightweight with an easy maneuverability that makes it a pleasure for intricate hand work or light chopping duties for the professional or home chef.

    Sharp, deft, and with attractive visual appeal, this handsome knife will get plenty of use – and the included mahogany saya cover adds a warm touch of Eastern elegance.

    This one would rank higher in our listing (it’s one of our favorites) but it’s not always available as it’s imported in limited quantities to the US and is not always available.

    Check prices and read customer reviews at Amazon now!

     

    7. Wusthof Classic Asian Utility

    Heading west, the Classic series is one of Wusthof’s best-selling lines, and their 4.5-inch Asian utility knife is a nimble and sturdy all-purpose tool for the kitchen.

    The Wusthof Classic 4.5 in. Asian Utility Kitchen Surfer Knife on a maple butcher block surface.

    Forged from a single billet of high-carbon, German X50CrMoV15 steel, the Classic features outstanding rust and stain resistance plus a fine grain for durability, ease of sharpening, and edge retention.

    Close up of a laser engraved Wusthof logo on the Classic 4.5 in. Asian Utility Kitchen Surfer Knife. On a medium toned wooden background.

    Wusthof uses proprietary, leading-edge technology known as PTec (Precision Edge Technology) to precision-grind a computer controlled double-bevel cutting edge to 14 degrees for long-lasting sharpness.

    Close up of the black handle and red Wusthof symbol on the Classic 4.5 in. Asian Utility Kitchen Surfer Knife. On a wooden maple cutting board.

    An engineered handle is made of POM (Polyoxymethylene), a )highly durable thermoplastic that resists fading and discoloration. Contoured for fatigue-free comfort, it’s triple-riveted to the full tang for outstanding control and longevity.

    Wusthof Classic 4.5″ Asian Utility / Kitchen Surfer Knife

    And the weighted bolster adds beautiful balance for ease of use and a comfortable heft.

    The Classic’s dimensions are:

    • Blade length is 4.5 inches
    • Overall length is 9.5 inches
    • Heel height is 1 inch
    • It weighs 3.2 ounces

    Made in Germany, it comes with the Wusthof lifetime warranty to be free of material and workmanship defects.

    Reliably crafted of top-quality materials, Wusthof’s Classic utility knife is sturdy and comfortable, and is wonderfully adroit at light chopping, slicing, and precision, hand-held work.

    Tough and durable with long-lasting sharpness, it’s well suited for heavy workloads in the home or commercial environment.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    8. Zwilling J.A. Henckels Professional “S” Utility

    For European craftsmanship, Zwilling’s 6-inch utility knife from their Professional “S” series features their proprietary high-carbon, no-stain German steel and renowned attention to detail.

    The ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Professional S 6-inch Utility Knife laying on a maple wood cutting board.

    Forged from a single billet using Zwilling’s Sigmaforge process, the steel is ice-hardened for excellent hardness and toughness and produces a sharp, resilient cutting edge.

    A close up of the blade, bolster, and laser etched logo of the ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Professional S 6-inch Utility.

    Precision V-ground with a laser-controlled edge to produce a perfect 15 degree cutting angle, the Professional blade displays expert sharpness, edge retention, and fast, easy sharpening.

    ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Professional”S” 6″ Utility Knife via Amazon or direct from Zwilling

    The tough ABS handle is for chosen for its hard-wearing properties and is ergonomically shaped for comfort and non-slip safety. The handle scales are securely attached to the full tang with three stainless steel rivets, and the solid bolster balances and provides finger protection as well.

    The Professional “S” measures as follows:

    • Blade length is 6 inches
    • Overall length is 11.25 inches
    • Heel height is 1.5 inches
    • Weight is just under 6 ounces

    Made in Germany, it comes with Zwilling’s lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials and workmanship.

    Designed to meet the demands of professional chefs, the Zwilling Professional “S” utility knife is artfully crafted with first-rate materials to perform intricate detail work or light duties on a cutting board.

    Quick to sharpen and easy to maintain, it handles heavy workloads like a charm.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon or Zwilling now.

     

    9. Mercer Culinary Renaissance Utility

    Mercer also produces a worthy Western-version utility knife in their 5-inch Renaissance model – their higher-end series well-known for its first-rate fit and finish.

    The Mercer Culinary Renaissance 5-Inch Forged Utility Knife sitting on a maple wood butcher block surface.

    Precision crafted of one-piece forged construction, the steel is a high-carbon German alloy, X50CrMoV15, that provides an easily sharpened edge and gives outstanding protection against corrosion, discoloration, and rust.

    A close up of the blade and laser etched logo on the Mercer Culinary Renaissance 5-Inch Forged Utility.

    Formulated for long-lasting resilience under heavy work loads, the cutting edge is precisely taper-ground to a 15-degree angle for extra stability, easier honing, and long-lasting sharpness.

    Close up of the Delrin composite handle on the Mercer Culinary Renaissance 5-Inch Forged Utility.

    A smoothly rounded spine makes for a comfortable pinch-grip, and the shallow bolster gives access to the entire blade for easy sharpening and honing.

    Mercer Culinary Renaissance 5-Inch Forged Utility Knife via Amazon

    A handle of Delrin, a stable, non-fading thermoplastic, is ergonomically designed for fatigue-free comfort and is firmly triple-riveted to the full tang – which adds balance, strength, and stability.

    Dimensions for the Renaissance are:

    • A 6-inch blade length
    • Overall length is 11.25 inches
    • Heel height is 1 inch
    • It weighs 4 ounces

    Made in Taiwan, it comes with Mercer’s lifetime warranty to be free of defects in materials or workmanship.

    NSF certified for professional use, Mercer recommends washing with warm, soapy water and drying with a soft, clean cloth.

    The Mercer Renaissance provides a sharp blade with a comfortable heft and well-balanced feel that makes it a natural at hand peeling, delicate stylizing work, or slicing duties on a board.

    With an attention to detail many professionals love, the solid construction and top-quality materials belie the affordable price. Great value in an economy model.

    Check prices and read customer reviews on Amazon now!

     

    Japanese Vs. European Steel

    When purchasing a knife, it’s helpful to understand the types of steel used so you can choose ones that will meet your expectations.

    Traditionally, Japanese steels have a high carbon content which is processed to an extreme hardness of 62-63HRC. The hard steel can then be ground to unparalleled razor-sharpness and is also easy to re-sharpen.

    Close up of all 9 of our reviewed petty and kitchen utility knives on a maple wooden surface.

    The drawbacks with high carbon steel are that it requires plenty of care and maintenance.

    It oxidizes easily and will form a natural, dark patina – appealing to some eyes, ‘dirty’ to others.

    And, the extreme hardness makes the steel brittle, with chips and breakage along a fine cutting edge common occurrences.

    To address these issues, many manufacturers now use alloys that add characteristics of corrosion, rust, and stain resistance as well as toughness and durability.

    For cutlery grade stainless steel, chromium is the main element added for stain protection with 13 percent content needed to be classified inox (stainless) – from the French inoxydable (inoxidizable).

    European alloys usually have a lower carbon content than Japanese steels, but greater levels of chromium. This makes a softer steel that can’t achieve the same levels of sharpness – but, it has better edge resilience, toughness, and excellent stain resistance.

    Some of the common stainless alloys found in our review are:

    AUS10 – A middle-range Japanese alloy with extra molybdenum (Mo) and vanadium (V) to improve strength and resilience better than basic stainless steel. Easy to sharpen and rust resistant, it can be hardened 58-61HRC.

    VG10 – A top-notch Japanese stainless steel, it has a full 15 percent Chromium (Cr) for excellent oxidation, stain, and wear resistance and additional Cobalt (Co) means it can be forged at higher temperatures. Very hard and resistant to wear, it keeps a clean, sharp edge longer than other alloys and can be hardened to 58-62HRC.

    UX10 – Another Japanese steel, it has similar properties as VG-10 but without the cobalt. Softer than VG-10, it produces a sharp but durable cutting edge, is easy to sharpen, and has first-rate oxidation and stain resistance.  59-60HRC.

    X50CrMoV15 – This is the most popular stainless alloy used by German manufacturers. It has 15 percent chromium and small amounts of molybdenum and vanadium for improved edge structure and durability. A good steel for daily or high-volume work, it has excellent oxidation, rust, and stain resistance and a long-lasting edge. Hardness usually ranges from 56-59HRC.

    The Final Slice

    Small, deft, and agile, once you have a petty/utility knife in your arsenal, it will quickly become the first tool you grab onto for daily cutting tasks.

    Lightweight and nimble, they can be comfortably be used for extended periods of hand-held work without fatigue. And they’re great to quickly chop, mince, or chop fruit, herbs, veggies and other foods when you don’t want to pull out your chef’s knife.

    Top down view of all 9 of our reviewed petty and kitchen utility knives laid out on a maple butcher block surface.

    And as you can see, there’s a model suitable for every cook! Shoot us a line in the comments below if you have any thoughts or questions about petty or utility knives. If you’re interested in learning more about Japanese knives, read our complete buying guide for more details and info.

    Photos by Mike Quinn, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details.

    About Lorna Kring

    Recently retired as a costume specialist in the TV and film industry, Lorna now enjoys blogging on contemporary lifestyle themes. A bit daft about the garden, she’s particularly obsessed with organic tomatoes and herbs, and delights in breaking bread with family and friends.

    Sours: https://foodal.com/kitchen/knives-cutting-boards-kitchen-shears/things-that-cut/best-petty-and-kitchen-utility-knives/


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