Kitchen Knife Review: Miyabi 600D Fusion 8-inch Gyuto

Stats:
Blade: 210mm long; 65-layer damascus, warikomi cladding; CMV60 (VG-10) core (target 60 HRC); double-bevel (60-40 ratio at a guess) edge
Handle: western-style 3-rivet; micarta
Weight: 202g
Price: $130

This was my first venture into the realm of Japanese cutlery so I figured it made sense to start with a gyuto, the Japanese version of a western chef’s knife—the type of knife that I’m most familiar with. I didn’t want to start off super fancy since its extremely easy to dump a whole lot of money on nice knives and I wanted to test the waters before attempting to swim across the Channel. Besides, super fancy would come along in time anyway. After a lot of pouring over the wisdom of the internet (and a lot of that… other stuff you find on the internet), I had narrowed down my selections, so the Gastrognome and I ventured over to Sur la Table to have a look at the knives. After a bit of hands-on testing, this is the one that I ended up with.

The knife was quickly freed from its box (a fairly standard plastic-and-foam affair, albeit sporting a small photo of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, who collaborated on the design on the knife), and initial inspection showed the fit and finish to be very good. Personally, I think the knife looks really nice—some people who prefer a minimalist or a rustic look might be turned off by the damascus or the red spacers set in the darker handle, but I like ‘em. Speaking of the handle, it’s very comfortable; this was actually one of the first things that I noticed when I got to hold it in the store, and it doesn’t disappoint while in use either. The weight is only 1 gram less than my 4-Star, but the balance is right in front of the choil and the knife feels lighter in hand than its German cousin as well. Quite frankly, holding this thing just plain feels good.

The blade was (somewhat to my surprise) shaving sharp right out of the box and sports a very nice feature in that the spine and choil are eased by the manufacturer, so a pinch grip is comfy right off the bat (yet another reason to just wrap my fingers around it!). The geometry is a bit closer to German than French style, but the blade is definitely flatter than, say, my 4-Star chef’s knife. The knife has performed well in all of the cutting tasks I’ve put it through so far, which mainly involve cutting a variety of fruits (tomatoes, cucumbers, lemons), vegetables (lots of onions, garlic, peppers as well as harder stuff like carrots, broccoli and asparagus) and herbs (basil chiffonade, minced parsley and cilantro). The 600D doesn’t rock quite as well as the fuller bellied 4-Star, but (as expected) it’s a better push-cutter and slicer, which suits my style better anyhow.

It should be noted that Miyabi makes a number of (distressingly similarly named) knife lines where in general an “S” in the name means the knife is made with German steel, a “D” indicates damascus and “MC” indicates super-high hardness powdered steel. The 600D Fusion line is only available from Sur la Table, but contrary to what you would expect from most “exclusive offers,” is priced very similarly to Miyabi’s standard 7000D line even while sporting a superior (in my opinion) design.

Overall I’m really happy with the knife so far and would definitely recommend it to others looking for an entry into the realm of Japanese kitchen knives! If the sun ever decides to come out and give me some decent light, I’ll try to add some pictures.

Addition: This review now features photos!
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More kitchen knife reviews:
Miyabi Artisan 8″ gyuto/chef’s
MAC 10″ gyuto/chef’s
Miyabi Fusion petty/utility

6 comments to Kitchen Knife Review: Miyabi 600D Fusion 8-inch Gyuto

  • I find with the Shun knives I have they require constant honing to ensure the edge doesn’t break down too quickly. Not sure if it’s a thinner angle, or just something to do with the steel.

    Awaiting a 3-6 month check-up as I’m curious about how that style of knife holds up over time.

    • Alden

      Japanese knives are made with a much thinner sharpening angle than their French and German counterparts. I actually have the Miyabi 7000D 8″ Gyuto and I love it, the handle to me feels better than the standard for western knives. I dunno if its because its tailored to a specific hand (mine is right-handed) or if its just cause of the rounder shape of the handle but it just feels amazing in the hand. Whats interesting to note that the reviewer didn’t mention is that Miyabi is owned by Henckel. The knives are designed with Japanese chefs, manufactured in Japanese plants using Japanese methods so they are entirely Japanese. Just kind of interesting that Henckel owns the company. Also they come with a lifetime warranty which should ease any shoppers mind.

    • Amon-Rukh

      @ Falquan: So far as I know the Shun Classic, Miyabi 7000 and Miyabi 600 lines all feature VG-10 steel, but variations in the heat treatment can lead to differences in edge retention. I’ve heard some complaints regarding this in Shuns but I don’t have any personal experience to go off of. Of course sharpness is pretty subjective too–I steel my German knives before pretty much every use just to ensure that they’re up to snuff while my mom bumbles around her kitchen with the dullest of things and doesn’t even seem to notice that there’s hardly any edge left on her poor knives at all!

      @ Alden: Good point about the warranty. In addition to that, SLT has a ridiculously lenient return policy that helps make pricier purchases a bit more comfortable as well!

    • Amon-Rukh

      Updated to add photos. Also wanted to report for the awaited several-month check-up. The knife has definitely lost some edge since I got it–it’s still adequately sharp (in cutting things like tomatoes I would still rate it higher than my Z 4-Star), but it’s not shaving hair anymore. As I improve my sharpening skills, I hope to give that a go and see how it does. In the meantime, I’m keen (har) to give it a regiment of stropping on balsa and/or newspaper. Will report again later on how things are holding up!

  • [...] was the case with my Miyabi Fusion gyuto, the packaging was pretty simple while fit and finish were very good. There is a tiny bit of [...]

  • [...] not like that. Jeez, you perverts.) The knife weighs a pretty substantial 212g (10g more than the Miyabi Fusion gyuto) and the balance point is is right at the end of the handle, which makes the knife slightly [...]

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