Yaxell knives buying guide

Yaxell knives buying guide

Yaxell Buying Guide!

Discover the art of Japanese craftsmanship with Yaxell knives

Precision and beauty in every slice

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on Yaxell knives, designed to help you understand why these exceptional tools are a worthy addition to your kitchen. Whether you're a professional chef or a home cook, choosing the right knife can significantly enhance your culinary experience and is the difference between effortless prep and hard work. This guide will walk you through the features, benefits and various types of Yaxell knives, ensuring you make an informed purchase.

Discover the beauty of Yaxell knives at Kitchen Warehouse

Yaxell Japanese kitchen knives, handcrafted in Seki, Japan, combine centuries-old craftsmanship with modern technology to create blades that are exceptionally sharp, durable, and aesthetically pleasing. Each knife takes up to seven weeks to produce, and blades are individually straightened, etched and sharpened by hand, ensuring meticulous attention to detail and superior quality. Available in various collections such as Zen, Taishi, Ran Plus, Super Gou, and Super Gou Ypsilon, Yaxell knives cater to different needs and preferences.

Understanding your needs

When selecting a Yaxell knife, consider your cooking habits, kitchen size, and current kitchenware. If you frequently prepare meals from scratch, a versatile chef's knife is an absolute must-have and perfect for general food prep, chopping, slicing and dicing. If you’re inclined to tackle more precision based cutting, you might need a larger collection with a multitude of different blades for different tasks. Assessing your existing knife collection as well as the space you have in your kitchen, will help you identify which specialist knives you need.

Setting priorities

Determine what aspects are most important to you:

  • Durability: Look for knives with high Rockwell Hardness ratings and multi-layered steel for longevity.
  • Ease of use: Ergonomic handles and balanced weight distribution are crucial for comfort during extended use.
  • Price: Yaxell offers knives across various price ranges, ensuring there’s an option for every budget.
  • Aesthetics: If appearance is important, consider knives with intricate Damascus patterns and hammer finishes.

Types of Yaxell knives: Categories explained

  • Chef’s knives: Versatile, all-purpose knives ideal for general food prep for slicing, dicing, and chopping.
  • Santoku knives: Perfect for precision tasks, featuring a shorter, more manageable blade than a chef’s knife, performs well at slicing, dicing and mincing.
  • Paring knives: Small, shorter blades ideal for peeling, seeding or cutting fruits and some vegetables
  • Utility knives: Mid-sized knives suitable for various tasks that are too large for a paring knife but too small for a chef’s knife.
  • Boning knives: Knives with narrow, flexible blades perfect for the precise removal of bones from meat and fish.
  • Bread knives: Serrated blades designed to slice through bread without crushing it.
  • Knife sets: Comprehensive sets including various types to cover all your cutting needs.

Pros and cons of each knife type

Chef’s knives
  • Pros: Highly versatile, durable, ideal for a wide range of tasks.
  • Cons: Larger size may be cumbersome for small hands, precision cutting or limited spaces.
Santoku knives
  • Pros: Excellent for precision, lightweight, versatile for many tasks.
  • Cons: Shorter blade may not handle large items as efficiently.
Paring knives
  • Pros: Great for detailed work, compact size, easy to handle.
  • Cons: Limited to small-scale tasks.
Utility knives
  • Pros: Versatile, fits in between paring and chef’s knives.
  • Cons: May not excel at specific tasks compared to specialised knives.

Key features to consider: Material and build quality

Yaxell knives typically feature VG-10 stainless steel cores, known for their sharpness and durability, or ultra-hard SG2 powdered stainless steel with micro carbine, which ensures exceptional sharpness and a lasting cutting edge. The knives are often clad with multiple layers of stainless steel, creating beautiful Damascus patterns and providing extra strength. The handles are crafted from materials like canvas-micarta or pakkawood, offering both durability and comfort.

Ease of use and maintenance

Yaxell knives are designed with ergonomics in mind, ensuring comfortable handling, even during prolonged use. The hammer finishes on some blades create air pockets, reducing food sticking and making cleaning easier. Regular maintenance involves honing with a whetstone to keep the blades in optimal condition. We don’t recommend you ever wash your Yaxell knives in a dishwasher, always hand wash to maintain the edge and preserve the handles. The extra hot environment of a dishwasher can damage specialist cutlery.

Get to know the different Yaxell ranges

  • Yaxell Ran Plus: Ran Plus knives have a 69 layer stainless steel cladding over a VG-10 core, with a Rockwell Hardness of 61. These durable blades feature an intricate Damascus pattern, hand engraved logos, and water resistant canvas-micarta handles.
  • Yaxell Taishi: Taishi knives have a Rockwell Hardness of 61, three layers of super stainless steel with a VG-10 core, a hammer finished blade with a Katana wave pattern, and black beech pakkawood handles for stability.
  • Yaxell Super Gou: Blades are made of ultra-hard SG2 powdered stainless steel with a micro carbide distribution, and clad by 160 layers of stainless steel, 80 layers on each side, creating a beautiful Damascus pattern on the blade.
  • Yaxell Super Gou Ypsilon: Super Gou Ypsilon knives have a Rockwell Hardness of 63, and the blades are made from ultra-hard SG2 powdered stainless steel with a micro carbide distribution, clad by 192 layers of stainless steel, 96 layers on each side, with a Damascus pattern and a traditional Japanese Sumarai family crest inlaid on the handle.
  • Yaxell Zen: Zen knives have a Rockwell Hardness of 61, 37 layers of forged stainless steel with a VG-10 core, a simple Damascus pattern, and a hammer finish that prevents food from sticking.
  • Yaxell Hana: Each knife in the Hana collection features a MOVAX stainless steel core, surrounded by two layers of premium stainless steel, with a Rockwell hardness of 58.
  • Yaxell Ketu: Featuring black beech pakkwaood handles, each blade has a core made of ultra-hard SG2 powdered stainless steel with micro carbine distribution for exceptional sharpness and lasting cutting edge, and three layers of high quality Damascus steel hammered by hand.

Yaxell knives offer a blend of traditional Japanese craftsmanship and modern technology, resulting in tools that are sharp, durable, and beautiful. Whether you prioritise durability, ease of use, or aesthetics, there's a Yaxell knife to meet your needs. Assess your cooking and preparation habits and kitchen setup to choose the best knife for you.

FAQs

What makes Yaxell knives unique? Yaxell knives are handcrafted in Seki, Japan, using a combination of traditional techniques and modern technology, resulting in exceptionally sharp and durable blades.

How do I maintain my Yaxell knife? Regular honing with a whetstone and proper storage, such as using a knife block or magnetic strip, will keep your knife in optimal condition.

Are Yaxell knives dishwasher safe? It is recommended to hand wash Yaxell knives to maintain their sharpness and longevity and to protect handles.

What is VG-10 stainless steel? VG-10 is a high quality stainless steel known for its sharpness, edge retention, and resistance to rust and corrosion.

What is the difference between the Zen and Ran Plus collections? The Zen collection offers a more straightforward Damascus pattern and is typically less expensive, while the Ran Plus collection features more layers of steel and intricate designs.

Do Yaxell knives come with a warranty? Yes, Yaxell knives typically come with a limited lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship.

What is the Rockwell Hardness rating? It measures the hardness of the knife's blade, with higher ratings indicating greater durability and edge retention.

Are Yaxell knives suitable for professional chefs? Yes, many professional chefs prefer Yaxell knives for their sharpness, balance, and durability.

Are Yaxell knives made in Japan? Yes, all Yaxell knives are handcrafted in Japan.