Kevin Kent’s top 5 Chef Knives for Home Use

Every knife set starts with a chef's knife (multi purpose knife), also sometimes called a French knife or gyuto. People often ask for a santoku, as it’s a name they’ve heard before but I find them a bit small for use as a multipurpose knife as they generally come in a 165mm (6inch) size only. They are far too small for cabbage or watermelons, and those large onions from the farmer’s market for example. I think a 210mm gyuto is the best knife for home sized jobs. If you are a chef I’d suggest a 240mm or 270mm but that’s a different story, as chefs demand more and a larger knife makes turning 100kg of potatoes into hash browns a much easier task.

1. Fujiwara Denka no Hoto 210mm gyuto

This is my number one gyuto at home, currently. The sharpness this knife is capable of and how incredibly long it stays sharp blows my mind. The first time I used it I was in love. The finger notch at the end of the blade is brilliance. If you put your first or middle finger there and grip the blade you will be holding a knife like a chef and you will know what is perfect balance. I get that it's pricey, but so is a Ferrari.


Masakage Koishi Gyuto
2. Masakage Koishi 210mm gyuto

Kato-san who makes this knife is one of my fave blacksmiths because of his skill, and because he is a cool guy. He’s been a blacksmith for over 50 years and figured something out by now. This line of knives gives incredible performance and doesn't break the bank. Chefs all over the world swear by this knife. 

Masashi SLD gyuto
3. Masashi SLD 210mm gyuto

I love mirrored knives. I do. They look great if you're gonna be on TV and great when cooking for friends. Masashi-san makes knives that slice through food like magic but are also a more rugged than one would think. This knife is super fun to use when cooking by yourself, but even more fun when someone is watching you cook. We all get dressed to impress on special occasions, why not have a knife for those occasions as well? 

Tadafusa hocho kobo gyuto
4. Tadafusa Hocho Kobo 210mm gyuto

This is a handmade knife with all of the romance that brings but has a very gentle price tag. I think it's a great knife for home chefs as it's easy to keep sharp and easy to care for. It, like the Masashi blade above is a bit heavier and therefore slightly more rugged than some of our other knives.

haruyuki kasumi-uchi gyuto
5. Haruyuki Kasumi-uchi 210mm gyuto

Want a great looking knife that is easy to take care of and doesn’t break the bank? This is for you. This knife is the easiest to sharpen of the bunch (but sadly will also need to be sharpened more often) and looks awesome. I love how these knives feel and I think they are great for home and especially for a gift.


Kevin Kent
Kevin Kent


Kevin Kent’s fascination with Japanese knives began while he was working as sous-chef for the legendary chef Fergus Henderson at St. John restaurant in London, England. In 2007, he began selling handcrafted Japanese knives out of a backpack on the back of his bicycle, while working as a chef at River Café in Calgary, Canada. Kent is just as obsessed with Japanese knives as when he first held one, and a few times a year, he travels to Japan to meet with his blacksmith friends, to drink far too much sake, and to learn more about the ancient art of knife-making. Born and raised in Saskatchewan, he refuses to confess how many Japanese knives he owns….but he admits the number is rather high. Follow Kevin on Twitter @knifenerd

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