10 Best Shun Kanso Review 2021 | High Quality and Affordable Knife

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As a knife enthusiast, I have always looked for new knives in the market to enrich my collection. Shun knives are my absolute favorite in this collection for their simple yet elegant designs and unique product lines.

Japanese knives always have the edge over American or Japanese knives for their unique shapes and properties.

 Do you know that the correct pronunciation of Shun is “Shoon”? It is not until recently that I got to know about the meaning and correct pronunciation of Shun.

 Shun in Japanese refers to the time of the year when a food is at its perfection. For example, Shun is when the fruit is the sweetest, or a vegetable is the freshest.

This name does proper justice to the brand because the performance of Shun knives is always at perfection. Let’s explore some of the best knives of Shun in this Shun Kanso review.

Top Pick


IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS
Shun Kanso 6-Piece Block Set; Includes 3.5” Paring Knife, 6” Utility Knife, 8” Chef’s Knife, 5.5” Hollow-Ground Santoku, Kanso Combination Honing Steel and Sleek Wood Block with Two Additional Slots
  • Rating: 4.5/5
  • Materials: Japanese AUS10A High Carbon Stainless Steel
  • Blade Edge: Chef’s Knife
  • Color: Silver
  • Number of Knives: 6-pieces
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Shun Kanso 12-Inch Hollow-Ground Brisket Knife; Trim and Slice Large Cuts of Brisket, Roast, Ham and Turkey; High-Performance Stainless Steel Kitchen Knife Handcrafted in Japan; Includes Wooden Sheath
  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Materials: Japanese Alloy Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Blade Edge: Hollow
  • Size: 12″ 
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Boning/Fillet Knife; Stainless Steel Blade Handcrafted in Japan; Tagayasan Wood Handle; Tradition Meets Innovation with Every Slice; Optimal Control for Delicate, Precision Cuts

Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Boning Knife

  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Materials: Japanese Alloy Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Blade Edge: Curved
  • Size: 6.5″ 
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Hollow-Ground Nakiri; Japanese Vegetable Knife; Razor-Sharp, High-Performance Steel Blade, Rustic Heritage Finish; Full-Tang Construction for Optimal Control; Tagayasan Wood Handle

Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Nakiri Knife

  • Rating: 4.6/5
  • Materials: Japanese Alloy Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Blade Edge: Hollow
  • Size: 6.5″ 
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Shun Kanso Santoku 7 Inch Hollow Ground Premium Stainless Steel Blade and Wood Handle Traditional Asian Design Handcrafted in Japan, Multi-Purpose Kitchen Knife

Shun Kanso 7 Inch Hollow Santoku Knife

  • Rating: 4.5/5
  • Materials: Japanese Alloy Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Blade Edge: Asian Cutlery
  • Size: 7″ 
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Shun Cutlery Kanso 8-Inch Stainless Steel, All Purpose, Durable, Essential, Handcrafted Japanese Gyuto Style Chef’s Knife; Scratch Resistant Heritage Finish for Kitchen Food Preparation Tasks at Home

Shun Cutlery Kanso 8-Inch Chef Knife

  • Rating: 4.7/5
  • Materials: Japanese High Carbon Stainless Steel
  • Color: Silver
  • Blade Edge: Razor-Sharp Chef’s Knife
  • Size: 8″ 
  • Handle Material: Wood
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Why Shun Kanso Knife is Different from Other Chef Knives?


The first reason is its Japanese heritage. Japan has been making knives since its ancient times. They have taken the art of swordmaking to a new height with their unique craftsmanship.

Shun knives use thin, durable stainless steel that gives a different experience. They go through more than a hundred processes to get the perfection that the name, Shun implies. You can also see Damascus pattern in many of their knives.

The product line of Shun knives is also commendable. They have made their products available for the medium to high range of customers as per the price. So, far there are 7 product lines.

Shun Kanso falls in the category of comparatively cheaper knives. All these together make Shun knives different from the other knives in the market.

What is the Best Shun Kanso Knife?


The Shun Katso is one of the most famous lines of Shun among the household for its affordability. I love the design of Shun knives for its beautiful imprinted logo on the blade.

The Tagayasan wood handles make the knives look more elegant and also provide the utmost safety with their high density. This wood gives the handles an eye-catching dark brown shade.

The sharpness of the knives depends on the building material.

The knives of this series use AUS-10A Japanese steel. This stainless steel has high corrosion and wear-resistance with suitable hardness. It also has Vanadium for extra hardness.

The knives have a heritage finish. It gives the knife’s blades a good finish and helps to hide the scratches.

With all these qualities, it is hard to choose one best from the series. I will let you decide the best one on your own after reading this Shun Kanso knife review.

Top-10 Shun Kanso Knife


Review on the 10 Best Shun Kanso Knives


Here I will give the ten best Shun kanso knives review with pros and cons. The first two in the list are knife sets, and the rest are single knives.

01. Shun Kanso 6-Piece Block Set Review

Shun Kanso 6-Piece Block Set; Includes 3.5” Paring Knife, 6” Utility Knife, 8” Chef’s Knife, 5.5” Hollow-Ground Santoku, Kanso Combination Honing Steel and Sleek Wood Block with Two Additional Slots

You probably have seen this set in all Best Shun Kanso Knife Review on the Internet. It is the most popular knife set in this product line. It has the four best Shun Kanso knives with a sleek woodblock and honing steel. Sleek knife sets are popular because of their compactness and design.

They can fit in any kitchen, taking the minimum space. This compact Shun Kanso knife set has a dark brown wooden block similar to the handles. It has two additional slots for your extra Shun kanso knives collection. It will fit best in a dark-themed kitchen.

Among the four knives, there is an 8-inch Chef knife. We all know the importance of a Chef’s knife in our kitchen. It is the Jack of all trades. You can cut, slice, chop, dice, mash, everything you want with this knife. It is a must-have for all kitchens.

You will also get a 6-inch utility knife in this set. It is best for everyday general kitchen tasks. You can cut meat or slice sandwiches with this knife. Smaller than the Chef’s knife, it is more convenient for daily chores.

The other two knives are a a 5.5-inch Santoku knife and a 3.5-inch paring knife. Paring knives are small knives used for cutting, peeling, and slicing small fruits and vegetables.

Santoku knives are the creation of Japan. The dimples in their blade make them more convenient for cutting softer food and meat.

The honing steel is 8-inch long. Shun recommends honing their knives once every week. It realigns the sharp edge of the steel. Many people think that sharpening and honing is the same, but it is not. Honing needs to be done more frequently and sharpening, once a year.

Pros

  • It comes with a sleek wooden block and a honing steel
  • Four essential knives for everyday chores
  • Razor-sharp blades and high carbon stainless steel building material
  • Affordable

Cons

  • A limited collection of knives
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02. Shun Kanso BBQ Set Review (4-pieces)

Shun Cutlery 4-Piece Kanso BBQ Set; Three Professional-Grade Knives and Travel-Friendly Knife Roll; Handcrafted Japanese AUS10A Refined Steel and Tagayasan Handle for Exceptional Knives

It is a savior for all BBQ lovers. You do not have to worry about figuring out the perfect knives for your BBQ beforehand and looking for an appropriate bag to carry it out for a picnic or camping. Shun has got your back with their 4-Piece Kanso BBQ Set.

It has the three knives needed for any BBQ preparation. The first one is the 5-inch Shun Kanso Asian Multi-Prep Knife.

As the name suggests, it can perform multiple tasks like slicing, dicing, chopping, micing, and even peeling. You can use this knife not only for the meat but also for the vegetables and other food.

The next is the 6-inch Shun Kanso Boning and Fillet Knife. It is the knife without which BBQ can get super troublesome. It is a must-have for separating meats from the bone and filleting. It is a carved knife with a pointy tip.

The last one is the Brisket knife. It is a 12-Inch Hollow-Ground knife.

Briskets are a large piece of fibrous meat. You do not want to mess up in the presentation after spending hours making the perfect BBQ. The brisket knife makes the perfect thin slices without smashing the meat.

The main attraction of this knife set is the black Shun knife roll that comes with it. It makes this set perfect for taking outdoors.

However, this set lacks a small knife like a paring knife for the chopping, slicing, and peeling of smaller vegetables.

Pros

  • It comes with a good-looking Shun knife roll bag
  • All BBQ essential knives in one set
  • Razor-sharp knives
  • Strong Tagayasan wood handles

Cons

  • Lacks a small knife
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03. Shun Kanso Brisket Knife Review (12-inch)

Shun Kanso 12-Inch Hollow-Ground Brisket Knife; Trim and Slice Large Cuts of Brisket, Roast, Ham and Turkey; High-Performance Stainless Steel Kitchen Knife Handcrafted in Japan; Includes Wooden Sheath

You already know about it from the previous set in the list. You will get to know about its features in detail here.

Brisket is one of the prime pieces of beef or veal. The part is large and pretty fibrous. It is a popular meat for BBQ, even though it takes hours for the perfect texture.

A delicacy that can take sixteen hours for cooking requires proper serving as well. You surely do not want to damage your perfectly cooked brisket while slicing it. It is when brisket knives come in handy.

The large 12-inch blade can cut briskets of any size. Do not confuse this knife with the Shun Kanso bread knife for its size.

This Brisket knife has dimples that prevent the meat from sticking to the knife blade. As it is a pretty large knife, the tip might get out of sight while cutting. The rounded tip makes it safe for dodging an accident.

All the knives of the Shun Kanso series have AUS-10A Japanese stainless steel. So, they are sharp from the box.

The knife comes with a firm wooden sheath for extra protection while carrying or storing.

It is a full tang knife with a Tagayasan wood handle. Finally, it gets a heritage finish which prevents the scratches from showing.

People also like: 10 Best Electric Knife for Cutting Brisket

Pros

  • 12-inch razor-sharp knife
  • High carbon AUS-10A Japanese stainless steel
  • Firm Tagayasan wood handle
  • Wooden Saya or sheath for extra protection while carrying or storing

Cons

  • A bit expensive
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04. Shun Kanso Asian Utility Knife Review (7-inch)

Shun Kanso Asian Utility Knife, 7 Inch, Handcrafted Japanese Cutlery, SWT0767, Silver

Shun Kanso Utility knife does proper justice to the name, Utility. It has a unique shape that does all sorts of work of kitchen with ease.

It has a wide blade. The flat side of it is useful for smashing garlic cloves or small ingredients. It has a plain blade edge with a sharp tip. This tip is useful for peeling.

The design of the knife is simple. Kanso means simplicity in Japanese. So, all the knives of these series have a simple design, including all the essentials.

The long straight edge is perfect for portioning meat or chopping vegetables. It is my favorite utility knife for its versatility. All the sides of the knife are useful somehow.

It is a full tang knife with a construction material of high carbon AUS 10A Japanese steel. So, it is razor-sharp, firm, and durable. The heritage finish precisely hides the scratch marks after use.

The Tagayasan wood (known as iron sword wood in Japan), makes a sturdy handle that is safe to use and provides a perfect grip.

Pros

  • A multi-purpose utility knife
  • Sharp tip and flat wide blade surface
  • A 16-degree cutting angle on each side
  • Razor-sharp knife with heritage finish

Cons

  • The handle might not be comfortable to some
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05. Shun Kanso Boning Knife Review

Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Boning/Fillet Knife; Stainless Steel Blade Handcrafted in Japan; Tagayasan Wood Handle; Tradition Meets Innovation with Every Slice; Optimal Control for Delicate, Precision Cuts

Many people think that having multiple knives is a hazard. They keep two knives, essentially, a Chef knife for all the kitchen chores. But as we know, every task requires a specific tool. The same goes for knives.

You should not use the tip of your Chef’s knife for separating the meat from your bone or to fillet. Leave this work to the Shun Kanso fillet/boning knife.

This knife has a curved blade with the tip facing upward. This design is a unique combination of innovation and tradition.

It helps to the work in utmost precision. No matter whether you are a home cook or professional, you will absolutely love this boning knife.

This 6.5-inch curved blade is perfect for trimming skin from a roast or separating the meat from the bone. You can make your own fishing fillets or cutlets using this knife.

It makes boning easy for all. The design of the knife is the same as the other Tagayasan wood handles of the series. It also has the heritage finish of Shun Kanso knives.

It is super sharp and durable for the high carbon AUS 10A Japanese stainless steel. It is recommended to hand wash them only.

Pros

  • High carbon AUS 10A Japanese stainless steel
  • Curved blade for precision and ease of use
  • Firm Tagayasan wood handle for solid grip and safety
  • Well balanced 6.5-inch blade

Cons

  • The blade might be prone to breaking or chipping if not used properly
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06. Shun Kanso Nakiri Review (6.5 inch)

Shun Kanso 6.5-Inch Hollow-Ground Nakiri; Japanese Vegetable Knife; Razor-Sharp, High-Performance Steel Blade, Rustic Heritage Finish; Full-Tang Construction for Optimal Control; Tagayasan Wood Handle

Nakiri is a special type of Japanese knife. As a Japanese brand, Shun can be trusted for making authentic Nakiri knives for its customers.  

Nakiri knives are distinct for their unique straight symmetrical edge. The width of the blade is not so wide as the utility knife. It is more like a rectangular shape.

Unlike the rocking motion that Chef’s knife uses. Nakiri knife uses up and down motion. This motion makes more precise cuts. It is why the Nakiri knife is so popular among Chefs worldwide.

It is ideal for those who are concerned about the presentation and symmetrical cut of their food.

I find Nakiri knives easy to use for their balanced design. They are ideal for all types of cuts like Baton, Batonnet, Julienne, etc. Even if you are not a pro at using knives, a Nakiri knife can help you make uniform cuts.

Shun Kanso Nakiri knife has hollow-ground indentations that look like dimples. It prevents the vegetables or fruits from sticking to the blade. It has a 16-degree double-bevel edge like the utility knife.

You can get the same razor sharpness as the other knives of the series for its AUS 10A stainless Japanese steel. It is the perfect knife to own if you want to try out a Nakiri knife for the first time.

Pros

  • High carbon AUS 10A stainless Japanese steel construction material
  • A 16-degree double-bevel edge
  • Perfect straight symmetrical edge for uniform chopping
  • Heritage finishing for a rustic look

Cons

  • No blade sheath
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07. Shun Kanso Santoku Review ( 5.5-Inch)

Shun Kanso 5.5-Inch Hollow-Ground Santoku; Smaller Knife Ideal for Medium-Sized Tasks; Fits Comfortably in Hand; High-Performance, Razor-Sharp Stainless Steel Blade; Tagayasan Wood Handle

Another popular Japanese knife is Santoku. Many people think that the purpose of a Santoku and a Chef’s knife are the same. However, they are not the same.  

The first evident difference between the two knives is the hollow-ground indentations at the base of the blade. It is a common feature among Japanese culinary knives. These air pockets prevent food from sticking to the blades.

The next difference is the size. Santoku knives are smaller than Chef’s knives. This one from Shun Kanso is comparatively even smaller than the usual Santoku knives.

Santoku means three virtues in Japanese. Some people also say that it means three uses. These three uses are slicing, dicing, and chopping. Like the Nakiri knives, Santoku knives also use up and down motion. So, the cutting style is also different from the Chef’s knives.

It also has a 16-degree double bevel edge. It is my favorite knife for cutting chocolates. It has the same simple design and handle of Tagayasan wood. The blade gets the rustic look from the unique heritage finishing of Shun.

Pros

  • High carbon AUS 10A Japanese stainless steel
  • A 16-degree double-bevel edge
  • Good-looking tagayasan wood handle
  • It can fit all sizes of kitchenHollow-ground indentations at the base of the blade counters

Cons

  • No sheath included
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08. Shun Kanso Santoku Review ( 7-Inch)

Shun Kanso Santoku 7 Inch Hollow Ground Premium Stainless Steel Blade and Wood Handle Traditional Asian Design Handcrafted in Japan, Multi-Purpose Kitchen Knife

It is the second Santoku knife in this review of Shun Kanso. The only difference between them is the size. It 1.5 inches larger. 7 inches is the ideal size of a Santoku knife.

Some also call Santoku knives vegetable knives as they are ideal for slicing, chopping, and dicing vegetables. You can make any cut you want precisely with this knife for its perfect design and balance.

And the indentations make the job easier by easily separating the vegetables from the knife’s blade. The high carbon AUS 10A Japanese steel mixed with Vanadium makes this knife super sharp and durable.

Even though it is called a vegetable knife, it is used for preparing steak or peeling too. If you are a Santoku knife fan, then it is a must-have.

People also like: 10 Best 7 inch Chef knife Review

Pros

  • Perfect sized 7-inch hollow-ground Santoku knife
  • High carbon AUS 10A stainless Japanese steel construction material
  • A 16-degree double-bevel edge
  • Hollow-ground indentations at the base of the blade

Cons

  • No sheath included
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09. Shun Kanso 8-inch Chef Knife Review

Shun Cutlery Kanso 8-Inch Stainless Steel, All Purpose, Durable, Essential, Handcrafted Japanese Gyuto Style Chef’s Knife; Scratch Resistant Heritage Finish for Kitchen Food Preparation Tasks at Home

I do not think I can ever stress enough about Chef’s knife. As a knife enthusiast, I have a vast collection of knives, and among them, around 80% are chef’s knives.

It is considered the most essential knife in any kitchen. It is mostly because of the versatility it has. The shape and size of a Chef’s knife make it perfect for all types of chopping, slicing, dicing, mincing, and much more.

The Chef’s knife of Shun is inspired by the traditional Japanese knife, Gyuto. It is identical to the regular Chef’s knife that we are familiar with.

It is a full tang knife so it provides perfect strength and balance to the user. The steel used here is the AUS 10A Japanese stainless steel mixed with Vanadium.

It is razor-sharp, firm, and durable. Moreover, the heritage finish on the knife prevents scratch marks on the blade.

The Tagayasan wood, also known as the iron sword word, handle complements the look of the knife perfectly. This strong wood makes the knife stronger.

Pros

  • Full tang knife provides the perfect balance
  • Shun Kanso’s heritage finish for preventing scratch marks
  • Contoured handle for the perfect grip
  • Japanese AUS 10 A stainless steel mixed with Vanadium

Cons

  • No blade sheath
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10. Shun Kanso Utility Knife Review (6-inch)

Shun Kanso 6-Inch Utility Knife; High-Performance, Narrow Stainless Steel Blade Ideally Suited for Precise Kitchen Tasks; Rustic Heritage Blade Finish; Full-Tang, Premium Wood Handle

It is the 2nd utility knife in this Shun Kanso review. The shape of this one is different from the Shun Kanso Asian utility knife.

The Asian Utility knife has a wide flat surface which is used for smashing ingredients. This one is like the regular utility knives in the market.

It has a narrow stainless steel blade mixed with Vanadium which makes it stronger and sharper. It is also lighter than the other utility knives.

This 6-inch utility knife is perfect for all precision kitchen cuts. The size is also large enough for all types of daily chores. The blade is sharpened to a 16-degree angle for neat cuts.

The rustic look in the knife comes from the heritage finish of Shun. It makes the knife look polished and also prevents scratch marks on the blade. It has the same Tagayasan handle with double rivets.

Pros

  • Handcrafted in Japan with AUS 10A stainless steel mixed with Vanadium
  • Slightly curved blade belly
  • Narrow 6-inch blade for precise cuts
  • Razor-sharp

Cons

  • No sheath
  • Prone to breakage and chipping
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Shun Kanso vs Shun Sora


In this Shun Kanso knives review, you already know a lot about the Shun Kanso line. So, let’s get straight to Shun Sora.

Shun Sora is the cheapest line of Shun so far. It is made considering the middle-range customer of the society.

The knives of this series are brilliantly made. The high-cost blade composition is used only where it is needed the most, which is the edge.

The edge is made of 3-layer VG10 steel. And the remaining part of the blade uses Japanese 420J polished stainless steel. To keep the cost further down Shun has used a TPE/PP plastic handle.

So you can see that there are major differences between the Shun Kanso and Shun Sora series. The construction steel, design, handle all are different.

Shun Sora is a better choice for those on a budget. But if you prefer a better quality then Shun Kanso is undoubtedly the best choice.

Final Verdict

If you are a fan of Japanese knives, then Shun has to be one of your favorite cutlery brands. Their Shun Kanso series makes knives in an affordable range with high-quality AUS 10A Japanese stainless steel.

From this Shun Kanso review, you know all the essential deets about the 10 best Shun Kanso knives. All the knives of this series have the same construction material and handle design.

The first two products in the list are knife sets. If you buy the first set you get the four most essential knives on the list at once. However, it is up to you to decide which knives you need.

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