Kitchen Knife Review: Miyabi 6000MCT “Artisan” 8-inch Gyuto

Stats:
Blade: 210mm long; mirror polish, hammer finish; SG2 steel (target 63 HRC); double-bevel edge
Handle: oval cocobolo pakkawood
Weight: 212g
Price: $125 discounted ($200 standard)

artisan

Yay, it’s another knife review!  This time we’re looking at the 8” chef’s knife from Miyabi’s flashy and (relatively) new Artisan line. We’ll begin with the obvious. The first thing you’ll notice about the Artisan line is that these are some seriously blinged-out blades. The handle sports a mosaic pin and multiple rows of spacers, the endcap has a deeply embossed Miyabi logo and the blade itself is mirror polished and wrapped in hammer-dimpled cladding. There’s also a hazy stripe of cladding beneath the hammered portion; this is described as “damascus” in the marketing blubs but it clearly isn’t. I don’t really know what they were trying to go for here, but I’ll admit to kind of liking that portion. I think a bunch of layers of faux damascus crammed into the middle would have really been too far over the top. The haze calms things down a bit. Anyhow, if you want something really eye-catching, this’ll do it. If you prefer simple and subdued, you’d best look elsewhere.
artisanhandle

Once your eyes recover from the initial radiance, a closer inspection reveals a number of details about the blade. The profile is similar to Miyabi’s Kaizen line of knives, with a long, gentle curve to the belly. This is different from the Fusion gyuto, which has a lower tip and flatter profile. The blade is definitely slim overall; less than 2mm wide above the heel and quite thin behind the edge. That thinness remains fairly constant, however, and the blade doesn’t taper much until about the last inch and a half or so before you reach the tip.
artisangeometry artisanspine

 

 

 

Okay, we’re done with the looking, let’s get to the touching! (No, 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 handle-heavy (a feeling that becomes more pronounced if you use a pinch grip). Aside from the balance, I found the oval handle more comfortable than a standard D handle but less comfortable than an octagon or western handle. Spine and choil of the blade are eased, which is a nice amenity. The blade was very sharp out of the box and this combines with the thinness to make it a great slicer right from the get-go. (That thinness will also continue to be an asset over the life of the knife.) The belly lends itself to easy rocking but means that push-cutters like myself will be less pleased. The high-hardness steel should lead to good edge retention, though I’ll admit that I haven’t used it enough at this point to really make a comment on whether that theory holds or not.

So, would I recommend it? Yes and no. It’s got plenty of good qualities that I think a lot of people will like, but at the same time it has qualities that may really turn some people off. Personally, I prefer the Fusion gyuto, but the Gastrognome prefers this one. The one thing I will definitely knock here is the price—there are a lot of cutlery options for $200 that are significantly more serious than this one. If, however, you can find it at a discount and are interested, I’d say a good bet is to see if you can try it out and decide if it might not be a good fit for you!

tl;dr version:

Pros:
spine & choil rounded
thin behind the edge & along spine
good for rocking & mincing

Cons:
on the heavy side
standard price is high–definitely look for a sale/discount
too much belly for push-cutting

Could go either way/your preference:
balance optimized for hammer/sword grip instead of pinch grip
very flashy looks

 

Quick comparison to other 8-inch knives: Top: Zwilling 4-Star chef's Mid: Miyabi Fusion gyuto Bottom: Miyabi Artisan gyuto

Quick comparison to other 8-inch knives:
Top: Zwilling 4-Star chef’s
Mid: Miyabi Fusion gyuto
Bottom: Miyabi Artisan gyuto

More kitchen knife reviews:
MAC 10″ gyuto/chef’s
Miyabi Fusion petty/utility
Miyabi Fusion 8″ gyuto/chef’s

8 comments to Kitchen Knife Review: Miyabi 6000MCT “Artisan” 8-inch Gyuto

  • The Miyabi Artisan looks more like jewelry than a knife! I will admit, knives still make me nervous, although the demonstration you put us through last year (the knife slicing the tomato on its own was AMAZE-BALLS) did make me believe I could actually enjoy using a real knife. Give it a few more years and a few more get-togethers, and all you fellow E-hoes may make an actual chef/cook-type person out of me yet!

    • Amon-Rukh

      With cutlery (as with jewelry and sports cars) looks can definitely matter. Of course with knives and cars one can argue whether the form or function is more important, depending on what one plans to do with the object at hand. That’s probably less important with jewelry. At any rate, the artisan is no Shigefusa!

  • Falquan

    For whatever reason, I’ve never been a fan of knives getting hammered. Er, I mean, that hammered look/faux damascus. For some reason it makes me think the knife is going to be more brittle, even if that’s not true at all. I And it reminds me of those hollow-ground numbers that say it’ll release the food easier, but really doesn’t make a difference.

    I have a Togiharu 240mm gyuto, this guy, which I like specifically for the length (giggity), so I’m with you on the marketing gimmicks.

    • Amon-Rukh

      Yeah, reading the marketing garbage about grantons and hollow grinding and all the other supposedly amazing additions that mass-market knives have slapped on them these days mostly just reminds me of when Homer tries to buy a car while dressed as Krusty and the salesman tells him that the bullet holes in the hood are speed holes. “You want my advice? I think you should buy this car.”

      That said, the Togiharu looks like it has a pretty nice profile. How do you like it?

  • Wow, what a beautiful knife. I agree with the previous reviewer about the hammered look though. Seems odd. I still haven’t ventured into the Eastern style knives. Does the blade being sharp on only one side cause the blade to bias toward one side or the other when cutting? And how does it hold up under normal wear and tear? My fiancé doesn’t use quite the same level of care when handling our current knives.

    • Amon-Rukh

      The blade on this one is sharpened on both sides (if I remember correctly, Miyabi typically does a 70/30 bevel as opposed to a 50/50 on most of their knives). I haven’t noticed any steering while cutting with it (ditto for the Miyabi fusion). Normally only traditional Japanese knives like the yanagi and usuba are actually single-beveled.

      As for care, it’s generally pretty sturdy. Both the blade and handle should resist things like humidity or getting left with water or food on them (although with the latter you’ll definitely want to avoid highly acidic or alkaline stuff being on it for any length of time). SG2 is a high-hardness steel, so it can hold its edge for a long time, but is prone to chipping rather than dulling. I would absolutely not do things like cut on a glass or ceramic surface, store it loose in a drawer without a blade guard or sheath of some kind, and definitely no dishwasher. Any of those things could chip the blade and the heat of the washer could also damage the handle.

  • I like how the blade of Miyabi Artisan gyuto looks like. My concern is the shape of the handle, I think, the top knife in your comparison picture have the stronger grip compared to the handle of Miyabi Artisan gyuto. More often, I am considering the shape of the handle because for me, comfortability in using knife can make me do more slicing jobs with ease.

    Is the handle made up of wood?

    • Amon-Rukh

      First off, apologies for the late reply!
      The handles of the Miyabi Artisan knives are made of pakkawood, that is they are made of layers of resin-impregnated wood fibers (in this case cocobolo wood). The end result is a material that looks like wood but is more durable and is highly resistant to common kitchen dangers like water damage that might ruin a normal wooden handle over time. I found the handle on the Artisan pleasantly (even surprisingly) comfortable overall, although as I mentioned above, the knife’s balance is a bit handle-heavy for my general preference. This probably has much more to do with the metal end-cap than the handle material though.

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