Best Japanese Knife Block Sets In 2021 (5 Knife Set Reviews)

Japanese knives are unique in their looks and performance. Their popularity is rising in the west because of the increased interest in Japanese culture and the ease of use that this cutlery affords.

Many people fall in love with these knives once they try them, and they end up wanting to get a full set of those knives with a nice-looking and functional block.

Since there is an increasing demand for Japanese knives, a lot of low-quality manufacturers started producing Japanese cutlery sets that look nice in their pretty boxes. The problem is that once you try to use them, you will regret the purchase.

With so many models and such a wide price range, you can get a headache browsing through the hundreds of products and thousands of reviewers. Because of that, we compiled a small but concise list of the best Japanese knife block sets that we found.

You can go with any of the models we reviewed, and you won’t be disappointed. They are all excellent choices!

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Our Pick
Enso Knife Set - Made in Japan - HD Series - VG10 Hammered Damascus Japanese Stainless Steel with Slim Knife Block - 5 Piece
Best Budget
KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block, 8” Chef Knife + 8” Bread Knife + 6.5” Carving Knife + 5” Utility Knife + 3.5” Paring Knife – Premium Japanese Steel Cutlery Kitchen Knives Set with Wooden Block
Best 10+ Pieces
Knife Set, imarku 11-Piece Professional Kitchen Knife Set with Block, Stainless Steel Chef Knife Set with Wooden Cutting Board, Knife Sharpener, kitchen knives
Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set, 14 Pieces Japanese High Carbon Stainless Steel Cutlery Kitchen Knife Set with Hardwood Block, Hollow Handle Self Sharpening Knife Block Set, Black, Best Gift
Knife Set Block - 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set - Damascus Steel VG10 Japanese Stainless Steel Home Kitchen Knife Set With Shadow wood Handle&Unviersal Walnut Block
Product
Enso Japanese Knife Block Set
KYOKU Knife Block Set
Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set
Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set
JunYuJiangChen Chefs Knife Set
Number Of Pieces
5
6
11
14
8
Blade Material
VG10 Stainless Steel
Japanese High Carbon Steel
High Carbon Stainless Steel
High Carbon Japanese Steel
Japanese VG10 Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
Dark Ash Wood
Acacia Wood
Acacia Wood
Wood
North American Walnut
Our Pick
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Enso Knife Set - Made in Japan - HD Series - VG10 Hammered Damascus Japanese Stainless Steel with Slim Knife Block - 5 Piece
Product
Enso Japanese Knife Block Set
Number Of Pieces
5
Blade Material
VG10 Stainless Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
Dark Ash Wood
Where To Buy
Best Budget
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KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block, 8” Chef Knife + 8” Bread Knife + 6.5” Carving Knife + 5” Utility Knife + 3.5” Paring Knife – Premium Japanese Steel Cutlery Kitchen Knives Set with Wooden Block
Product
KYOKU Knife Block Set
Number Of Pieces
6
Blade Material
Japanese High Carbon Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
Acacia Wood
Where To Buy
Best 10+ Pieces
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Knife Set, imarku 11-Piece Professional Kitchen Knife Set with Block, Stainless Steel Chef Knife Set with Wooden Cutting Board, Knife Sharpener, kitchen knives
Product
Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set
Number Of Pieces
11
Blade Material
High Carbon Stainless Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
Acacia Wood
Where To Buy
Image
Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set, 14 Pieces Japanese High Carbon Stainless Steel Cutlery Kitchen Knife Set with Hardwood Block, Hollow Handle Self Sharpening Knife Block Set, Black, Best Gift
Product
Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set
Number Of Pieces
14
Blade Material
High Carbon Japanese Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
Wood
Where To Buy
Image
Knife Set Block - 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set - Damascus Steel VG10 Japanese Stainless Steel Home Kitchen Knife Set With Shadow wood Handle&Unviersal Walnut Block
Product
JunYuJiangChen Chefs Knife Set
Number Of Pieces
8
Blade Material
Japanese VG10 Steel
Knife Block
Block Material
North American Walnut
Where To Buy

Last update on 2021-08-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Best Japanese Knife Block Set – Reviews


We started our research with more than 25 models that were worth looking at. In the end, we have only picked 5 since we always care about quality and never about quantity. It’s important to note that not every Japanese knife block set on our list is made in Japan or is of professional quality.

We’ve tried to include options for every budget, and you can’t realistically expect to get a Damascus steel handcrafted in Japan knife set for $100. You will find knife block sets that go as low as under $100, but also the ones that go over $1000.

In the following list, you will find models that are easily obtainable by anyone but also the ones that are used by professional chefs and experienced cooks. There is a Japanese knife block set for anyone!

Our Pick

Enso Japanese Knife Block Set

Enso Japanese Knife Block Set

Number Of Pieces: 5

Blade Material: VG10 37-layer Stainless Steel

Knife Block: Dark Ash Wood

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We believe that this is the best Japanese knife block set most people are looking for. It neither a budget nor a high-end model, which most people are satisfied with. It has rave reviews, and its quality is way beyond any other knife set at this price point.

What’s Included

You don’t get a ton of knives in this set, which is perhaps a drawback while it’s a positive at the same time. We always want more cutlery in a knife set for added versatility, but often when there are too many knives in a set, the quality of each knife diminishes.

The 4 knives you get in this set will cover most of your kitchen work, but you might need to purchase additional knives for specific tasks, such as a breaking knife for cutting through bones and large sections of meat.

Let’s see what do we get in this knife set:

  • 4.75″ Petty Knife
  • 5.5″ Prep Knife
  • 6″ Serrated Utility Knife
  • 8″ Chef’s Knife
  • 4 Slot Dark Ash Slim Knife Block

Those are the 5 pieces that you get with this set. Now, let’s see what are they made of and how they perform.

Materials

Enso Japanese Knife Block Set

The 4 knives all have the same premium Japanese VG10 37-layer stainless steel for their blades. This is layered steel that consists of VG10 steel for the inner layer and stainless steel for the outer layers. This means that we have a combination of exceptional hardness and edge retention all in one blade.

These knives will last a long, long time because of the high-quality laminated blades, given that you take care of them properly.

The block is made equally well as the blades. It is constructed from Dark Ashwood that is lightweight and has great strength. Enso didn’t cheap out on this part of the knife set, which is unfortunately mostly the case in this price range and lower. It is very well made and should last a long time!

Next, we got the handles of these beautiful knives that are Triple Rivet Black Micarta handles. This is a handle made of linen, canvas, and paper mixture that gives you enhanced durability. It resists moisture and doesn’t become brittle over time!

Overall, the materials used for the production of this knife block set are of the highest quality and are as good as it gets in this price range!

Performance

Enso Japanese Knife Block Set

While the materials are almost perfect for this set, the performance is what is ultimately essential. If you can’t cut with the knives or store them properly in the block, you have wasted your money.

The cutting edge of the knives is dangerously sharp. Some customers have noted that they had to focus on their kitchen work a lot more than before because of how surgically sharp the knives are.

You will have no problem cutting through every kind of food that comes your way. The knives will go through bones, skin, and cartilage like butter! The food that used to be stubborn and hard to cut becomes enjoyable to work with when using these knives.

It is also worth noting that these knives are as easily enjoyed by left-handed users. This is achieved by the double-beveled edge, which is equally sharp on both sides and makes it easy to cut no matter what hand the knife is in.

The handles are as good as the blades and offer great control and stability while cutting. The grip is excellent, and no slippage occurs if your hands are oily or wet. They are excellently balanced with the blades and are, of course, full-tang.

The knife block is very well designed and has just enough room for each blade. The knives slip in and out of the slots effortlessly, which makes the whole experience enjoyable.

Looks

De gustibus non est disputandum, we know that, but when it comes to these knives, we had to point out their stylishness and chic looks.

They will fit just right on any contemporary countertop and will make the whole kitchen stand out.

If you like to give prestigious gifts, this is the set to buy. No one will complain about getting this beauty as a housewarming gift.

Verdict

This is our favorite Japanese knife block set for many reasons. It is made of high-grade materials that will ensure the longevity of the set. The price to performance ratio is the best one we found, and that’s why this is the best Japanese knife block set on our list! Go for it, and you won’t be disappointed!

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KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block

KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block

Number Of Pieces: 6

Blade Material: Japanese High Carbon Steel

Knife Block: Acacia Wood

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The runner-up on our list of the best Japanese knife block sets is the KYOKU set. It is the best budget knife set that we found as it performs excellently and is made of materials we didn’t expect at this price range.

What’s Included

We like that this budget set goes for quality against quantity, which is sadly what most of the budget knife sets aim for. They don’t try to sell you 20 garbage knives to sell more of their sets, and that speaks of their honesty as a company.

This set includes 5 pieces of cutlery, and those are:

  • 8″ Chef Knife
  • 8″ Bread Knife
  • 6.5″ Boning Knife
  • 5″ Utility Knife
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife

We were impressed by how versatile this 5-knife block set is, considering the low amount of cutlery you get. You can get any kitchen task done with these 5 knives with no issues whatsoever.

Sure, a couple of extra small knives are always beneficial and add to the convenience, but we believe that KYOKU didn’t want to sacrifice the quality of the knives for them to include a few extra models.

Materials

KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block

The blades are handcrafted from Japanese high carbon steel. This something we didn’t expect at this price range, but then again, since they included fewer knives, they found it easier to focus on the quality of each blade.

The blades hold their edges wonderfully and don’t require frequent sharpening as the stainless steel models do. The overall feel of the blades and the steel is much higher in quality than what you would expect at this price point.

It is worth noting that these blades and knives are not manufactured in Japan but China. This is fully expected, and we like that the company is transparent about the origin of the steel and the production country.

The handles are, in our opinion, even better than the blades of the knives. This is unusual as most of the budget knife sets cheap out on the handle.

They are made of Spanish black Pakkawood that is durable and very strong. The Pakkawood is a combination of resin and high-grade wood that provides you with improved density and water resistance.

These handles are excellent and will last for decades, given that you take care of them and don’t put the knives in a dishwasher, which is something you should never do anyway.

The Acacia wood knife block seems strong, stable, and durable. It is well made and is beyond the competition in terms of quality at this price range.

Performance

Here we are at the big question, will these knives perform well enough to be usable. They will, more than we believed!

The sharpness of the blades is superb right out of the box. They can cut through all commonly used foods in the kitchen with ease.

Of course, the sharpness isn’t quite on par with the Enso knife set we reviewed above, but that shouldn’t be too surprising. Compared to the similarly-priced models such as the Ginsu Japanese knife set, they are much better.

We can’t get enough of these handles. They fit and feel so well in hand. It’s amazing working with them as the grip is excellent, and no slipping occurs when your hands get wet or oily. They are comfortable to hold for extended periods and won’t fatigue your hands!

The block works just like it should be and has enough room for all the knives. We also like that it’s pretty slim and doesn’t take as much countertop space as other models. The knives slide in and out of the sockets with no issues.

All in all, the performance went above and beyond our expectations. You won’t be getting anywhere near this performance at this price range with any other model!

Looks

We love that the block is designed to display the blades of the knives. The whole set is very stylish, and the black Pakkawood handles really make the whole set stand out.

The set is definitely gift-worthy and will look great on just about any countertop considering its compact size!

Verdict

If you’re on a budget, you won’t find a better Japanese knife set with a block than this one. For the price, you get more out of this set than any other we reviewed! You can’t go wrong with it!

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Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set

Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set

Number Of Pieces: 11

Blade Material: High Carbon Stainless Steel

Knife Block: Acacia Wood

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This Japanese knife block set from Imarku is at the same price range as our number 1 choice from Enso. It offers more pieces for the price, but the quality of the materials and the performance are lower. It is still a great Japanese knife block set if you prefer more knives.

What’s Included

This is a set for those that like a lot of options and versatility in their knife set. It comes with 11 pieces and has a knife for every type of kitchen application.

The 11 pieces that come in this set are:

  • 8″ Chef Knife
  • 8″ Bread Knife
  • 7″ Cleaver Knife
  • 4 Pieces Of 4.5″ Steak Knives
  • Kitchen Scissors
  • Knife Sharpener
  • Cutting Board
  • Knife Block

As you can see, plenty of knives and plenty of useful additions like scissors, honing steel rod and cutting board.

This set definitely prevails in this department as it is one of the most versatile Japanese knife sets we reviewed.

Materials

Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set

The blades of the knives are made of cheap but solid 3cr13 stainless steel. This type of steel offers excellent corrosion and wear resistance. Imarku made a great choice with this steel as it enabled them to make more knives and not sacrifice the quality and performance as much.

Still, this steel isn’t on the same level as the Damascus laminated steel used for the Enso knife set. It’s good enough, but don’t expect it to be nearly as durable as the Japanese steel.

This always a trade-off with sets that contain more cutlery. It’s a matter of what do you prefer, quality and durability or quantity and versatility.

In the end, both sets will probably last for decades, given that you take care of them.

The handles we have here are made of highly durable and resistant Pakkawood. We can’t really complain about the handles when they are made of this sturdy material. You should have no problems with them, and they should last a long time!

The knife block is not as well made as we expected. It still is sturdy and should be durable, but the craftsmanship here is not on a level we expected at this price point. In terms of usability, you shouldn’t have too many problems with it.

The cutting board is certainly better than the knife block. The wood seems to be of better quality, and the craftsmanship is on a higher level. Both pieces are practical but differ in terms of quality.

Performance

Imarku Japanese Knife Block Set

The cutting edge of the knives in this set is very sharp right out of the box. It is sufficient to go through all types of foods as easy as pie.

The honing steel that comes with the Japanese knife block set is excellent for blade maintenance. With it, you can straighten the edge of your blades and take care of them on your own.

This steel rod shouldn’t be confused with a tool for an actual sharpening of the blades. All this steel does is straighten the bent edge and make it perform better. For an actual sharpening, we always recommend leaving it to a professional. For more information on what sharpening really is and how often to hone your knives, read this article.

We love the feel and the grip offered by the Pakkawood handles. They stay in hand and are balanced on-point with the blades. It really makes handling the knives effortless.

The block and the cutting board get their job done. As we already mentioned, the block isn’t as well made as we would like but works as safe storage for the knives. The cutting board is simple but effective and is a nice addition to this set.

Looks

If you care about the looks of your new Japanese knife block set, you should know that this set has a small drawback in that department.

We already mentioned that the wood isn’t finished as well as we would prefer for this price point. It still looks decent, but for a set that is priced close to $300, we expect to see a flawless wood block.

The knives themselves look nice, and the whole set as a package has that contemporary chic look. The flaws are only noticeable at closer inspection.

Verdict

Despite the flawed knife block, this is one of the best Japanese knife block set models under $300 we reviewed, and its performance is great when you consider the number of pieces you get.

It’s an excellent choice for people who want a medium-range Japanese knife block set with more cutlery.

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Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set

Marco Almond Japanese Knife Block Set

Number Of Pieces: 14

Blade Material: High Carbon Japanese Steel

Knife Block: Wood

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The only knife set on our list is the Marco Almond Japanese Knife Block Set that combines affordability and versatility. It’s by no means perfect but does a lot of things right which makes it a worthwhile purchase.

What’s Included

One of the main advantages of this set is that you get a lot of things for a very modest price. This is the only Japanese knife block set under $100 that has more than 10 pieces.

The 14 pieces you get in this set are:

  • 8″ Chef Knife
  • 8″ Slicing Knife
  • 7″ Santoku Knife
  • 5″ Utility Knife
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife
  • Six 4.5″ Steak Knives
  • Kitchen Shears
  • Wooden Knife Block

That’s a lot of stuff, and for such a low price, you can’t expect impressive quality. In terms of versatility, you can do just about anything in the kitchen with this knife set which is why it’s so popular.

Materials

Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set

Let’s start with the bad first. The corrosion resistance is low, and that’s the main problem that we have with this set. You have to be very careful not to leave the cutlery in the sink and clean it as soon as you can after use.

This carbon steel is prone to rust and can damage the blade if you aren’t disciplined in maintenance. Still, if you pay attention to when you use the knives and make sure to dry them fast, you shouldn’t have too many problems with corrosion.

Apart from this problem, this steel has a solid hardness and is super easy to sharpen.

Unfortunately, the handle is also made out of this steel, which means you will have to dry the whole knife and take extra care about it.

If you can develop a habit of religiously drying the cutlery, you can benefit from the low price and get a solid performing set for an extra-low price.

The block is usable and is what we expected at this price point. It gets the job done and will probably last as long as the knives.

Performance

Marco Almond KYA28 Knife Set

This is where this knife set shines. It performs surprisingly well, and all 14 pieces are perfectly usable.

All of the blades come sharp out of the box and are good enough to perform their specific tasks. There isn’t much you can’t cut with this set.

Handles are comfortable and stay in hand throughout extended use. The grip is excellent, and every knife has a bit of weight to it, thanks to the stainless steel handles.

A convenient feature of the block is the built-in sharpener, which can help you maintain the knives with just a few minutes of work a week.

The block itself works as described and holds the knives in place. There is enough space for every knife to fit in the slot.

All in all, the performance of this set is what makes it a worthwhile purchase. While the materials aren’t great, an excellent performance of the knives makes up for it.

Looks

The availability of different designs and colors of this set is another reason to go for it. You can choose between 4 different designs and get the set to match your kitchen style.

All of the knives and the block look excellent and will look great in any contemporary kitchen.

Verdict

If you want to get as many Japanese knives as you can for as little money as possible, this is the set to go for. It won’t be as durable as the others but will serve for quite a few years if you take good care of it. With the current price of under $100, there isn’t a model that can compete with it.

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JunYuJiangChen 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set

JunYuJiangChen 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set

Number Of Pieces: 8

Blade Material: Japanese vg10 67 Layers Steel

Viscosity: North American Walnut

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We saved the best for last, but the best, in this case, comes with a hefty price tag that many can’t afford. This is a handmade set of the highest quality that is made for those that appreciate the finer things in life.

What’s Included

This set comes with 7 pieces of cutlery that can do anything you put them up to. This set has both the versatility and the highest quality of the professional Japanese knife block set.

The 8 pieces that this set includes are:

  • 8″Chef’s Knife
  • 6″ Nakiri Knife
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife
  • 8″ Bread Knife
  • 7″ Santoku Knife
  • 5″ Utility Knife
  • 6″ Boning Knife
  • Wood Knife Block

As you can see, every type of knife you will need in your kitchen is included in this set. Now, let’s see how well made this set is.

Materials

JunYuJiangChen 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set

The blades of the knives in this set are a true masterpiece. They are made of the 67, yes you read that right, 67 layers of steel. The high-grade VG 10 Japanese steel is located in the core, surrounded by 33 layers of steel from each side.

This layered Damascus steel provides extreme hardness and resistance to the blades. You can expect these blades to resist heat, cold, and moisture with no issues. This type of blade will certainly last a lifetime if it’s taken care of.

The handles are made of solid wood and should last as long as the blade. They are sturdy, strong, and lightweight.

Every single knife in this Japanese knife block set is handmade with lots of love and lots of passion. The quality of the cutlery is as good as it gets. They are one of the best-made knives we ever reviewed.

The solid walnut wood knife block matches the knives in terms of quality. It is, again, one of the best knife blocks we’ve seen and should last as long as the knives.

Performance

JunYuJiangChen 8 Piece Chefs Knife Set

The performance of the knives is just as we expected. The sharpness of the blades is on another level and really requires extra attention to prevent serious injuries.

It goes without saying that you can cut anything effortlessly with these knives. Their performance is unmatched and is by far the best on this list.

The handle feels perfect in hand. It gives you ideal control over the knife and makes every move effortless.

The balance between the blade and the handle is on-point, which further provides accuracy when handling.

We cannot praise enough the wonderful knife block that comes with this set. It is made hollow or transparent to help the air circulate. This means that it doesn’t only store knives but preserves them by preventing moisture buildup.

Everything about performance is the same as with the quality of the set. It’s as high as it can get.

Looks

We are seriously tired of praising this set, but then again, how can we not when it looks the way it looks.

Just see the pictures by yourself and admire the craftsmanship and love put into this set.

This would make a perfect gift for someone you care about, showing them that they deserve only the best.

Verdict

Why is this knife set last on our list when it’s the best in every department. Well, it’s in this spot because it costs twice as much as our number 1 pick, and the performance and the quality aren’t 2 times better.

That being said, if you have the means and don’t mind overspending on a knife set, this is the best Japanese knife block set in every sense.

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Conclusion


That about covers it for all you need to know about the best Japanese knife block sets.

All of the models we recommended will work great. The only question is what kind of money you want to spend on a knife set.

Whichever one you choose, you won’t be disappointed!

Enso - Best Japanese Knife Block Set

  • Number Of Pieces: 5
  • Blade Material: VG10 37-Layer Stainless Steel
  • Knife Block: Dark Ashwood

Last update on 2021-08-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API