The Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is 8 Inches, Hand-honed Cutlery With Traditional Japanese Design
What We Like
- Honbazuke hand honing
- A thin but sharp blade
- D-shaped Micarta handle
- Great balance
- Super-thin edges
- Flower Damascus design
What We Don’t Like
The Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is a great option for chefs who love sharp edges on traditional Japanese style knives. The beauty is only second to its high performance in the kitchen.
You don’t need to be a professional chef before you can use this knife. It is relatively lightweight so anyone can use it without fatigue.
However, the price is still on the high side. It may not be as expensive as many other high-end knives but it’s still well over $100 and that’s a lot of money for a single knife.
Miyabi is one of the most popular knife makers in Japan and they gained this popularity by creating premium knives for those who know the value of good cookware.
One of their best selling products is the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife. Following our extensive evaluation of the product, we decided to write this Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife review for you.
At a glance, the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is beautiful thanks to the unique 64 layers Damascus pattern on the blade and the black and velvet handle.
The Japanese craftsmanship is fully reflected on this stunning knife but what else do you need to know about it? Is it durable, comfortable, and affordable?
Related Article: Miyabi Artisan SG2 Chef’s Knife Review
Features of the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife
D-shaped Micarta handle
The handle of this knife has one of the common Japanese traditional shapes which is the D shape. D-shaped handles are extremely comfortable, especially for people with long fingers.
They support precision for each slice and are great for draw slicing. The handle of the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is made of Micarta, a wood-like material that is softer on your palms than wood.
Most knives used by heavy-duty survivalists are made with this Micarta handle because of its durability and strength. It has a high tolerance for harsh elements like heat, moisture, and cold.
They are wear-resistant and partially water-resistant as well. However, we still don’t recommend immersing your knife in water. The handle is also beautifully designed. It is black and velvet with a touch of stainless steel that is used for the mosaic pin in the middle.
The benefits of using a kitchen knife with exceptional balance cannot be overemphasized, especially when you’re cooking on a professional level.
Balance allows you to maintain full control of your knife for every slice throughout the cutting process. The Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is so well balanced because there is a perfect distribution of weight.
It is an 8 inches long knife that weighs about 11 ounces. This is the average weight of a regular kitchen knife. The blade is incredibly thin but strong at the same time.
Most knives with thin blades are not as durable as the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife. Thin blades are the best for high-performance cutting.
Honbazuke Hand Honing
If you are a fan of Japanese knives, you probably already know the Honbazuke hand honing method. The Honbazuke hand honing is a traditional method of sharpening knives after production.
It can’t be done with machines or in masses. It is a painstaking process that involves honing each blade by hand. After the blade is molded completely, it is honed in a vertical rotating machine first.
The second step involves honing it again in a horizontal rotating machine. The scalpel-like sharpness on Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is achieved after the third step.
It involves polishing the honed blade manually with a stropping block. Like many other blades in the series, the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is honed from a 9.5 to 12-degree edge.
When you consider all the work that is devoted to honing the blade, it’s not a surprise that it is one of the sharpest in the series.
Flower Damascus Design
The beautiful design on the blade didn’t get there by accident. It was engraved on the knife through the Tsuchime finish. To get this flower-shaped roughness on the knife, 65 layers of powered steel are added interchangeably to the blade.
This finish is similar to the finishing of Damascus knives but those usually have up to 300 layers of steel. The steel on the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is added in varying temperatures on both sides over and over until the last layer is added.
Despite all the layers, the blade maintains its thinness. Note that the rough design also makes the knife more efficient for slicing juicy and sticky foods compared to smooth knives.
VG10 Ice Hardened Steel
VG10 is a form of stainless steel that falls in the super steel category. It is a great option for creating the finest kitchen knives because of its high-carbon percentage.
Stainless steel with a high carbon percentage like the VG10 is usually harder than other forms of stainless steel. This VG10 super steel CRYODUR blade is ice-hardened to Rockwell 60 in rockwell hardness scale. It is also stronger, more durable, and easier to sharpen than other forms of stainless steel.
So, you’re not going to have any difficulty when it’s time to use whetstone. Since the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife is 1% carbon, it retains sharpness for a long time and is less likely to chip than other knives with low carbon content.
Related reading: Miyabi Birchwood Sg2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife Review The Verdict
As you can see from our review, it is a versatile, durable, sturdy, and beautiful knife. Its elegant design increases its functionality significantly not just its appearance.
The razor sharp edges retain sharpness for a long time and resharpening it is easy. It has all the qualities of a premium knife but the price doesn’t make it affordable to all.
It costs around $110 and $130 online. You can get a full set of knives for this price although they may not be as durable or beautiful as the Miyabi Kaizen II Chef’s Knife.