How to Choose the Right Knife to Gift

by Kevin Kent November 22, 2017 3 min read 0 Comments

How to Choose the Right Knife to Gift

If you're giving a knife as a gift is obviously because you want to give the coolest present ever. Ideally you want the recipient to squeal with delight after opening the box. The last thing you want is for them to say "Oh, a knife. That's nice thank you." You want them to shout “Holy Bananas! that is the coolest thing I've ever seen!” while doing a victory lap around the room with the knife held high above their head... In a safe manner, of course.

This is how to get the right response:

  1. You need a knife that has the look. There are tons of average looking knives in the world, but ignore those. For gifts you need something sexy.   

  2. You always want to give a gift thats easy to care for. No bunnies or puppies. I say look for a stainless steel knife because they will not rust. 

  3. Get something they can use every day. If it is their first Japanese knife I'd recommend a multi-purpose knife like a 210mm gyuto. Here are some of our favourites. If it is not their first, a supporting knife like a petty or nakiri is a great option. 

  4. Let them know the story of the knife. We always include a letter with all knives that tell a story of the blacksmith with a picture as well as care instructions. If they learn a bit about the man who made their knife and how to care for it they will value it more I think. In our documentary Springhammer, we let the blacksmiths speak for themselves.

  5. Remember they will need to keep it sharp, store it and cut on something. They take a gift from great to amazing. Think about how they will store the knife, (do they require a blade guard?) how they will keep it sharp (do they have a destructive steel honing rod, or do they have a ceramic honing rod like we recommend?) and consider a knife skills class for them to become super confident with their new life-long tool. 

  6. Some people say that giving a knife as a gift can bring bad luck. They say it can severe a relationship. Be heartened, there is is a sneaky loophole. Include a coin within the knife box. The recipient will use the coin to 'buy' the knife from you. It's sneaky, but I've cleared it with our lawyers.

We’ve helped loads of people this year find the best gifts for weddings, anniversaries, birthdays and Father’s Days. Christmas is coming and we can help.

All of these knives have that “wow”-inducing look, are easy to care for, are something you can use every day, and they all come with a care letter so the person receiving the gift will know the story of their knife. Don’t forget to put a coin in the box and get a blade guard for storage.

Here are some of our top selling gift knives of the year.

Haruyuki Yokuma Petty 80mm $149

Perfect for people who like smaller knives. I use this one for fruit. 

Mcusta Zanmai Damascus Corian Handle Petty 150mm - $218

For those who like the feel of European knives, but want Japanese sharpness.


Masakage Kumo Santoku - $317

Great for people who love and deserve beautiful things. A real crowd pleaser.


Mugen AS 210mm - $470

One of my favourite knives ever. It's perfect for those who want a professional feeling blade.


Haruyuki Mugi 210mm Gyuto $185

A perfect first Japanese knife for those who may be intimidated by a foray into super sharp knives.


Masakage Kiri 270mm sujihiki - $355

Perfect for the BBQ king/queen or head turkey-carver. One of the sexiest slicers on the planet.

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