Miyabi cutlery

Japan's best knife set

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You've heard it before. Every chef needs, above all else, great cutlery. Good knives, like the ones from Miyabi, are an investment and will last for years to come.

Every cook worth her salt knows the value of a good knife. A good knife feels good in your hand — steady, balanced and solid. In Japan, Miyabi is regarded as one of the premium knife brands among the finest chefs. Ever heard of Chef Masaharu Morimoto? (Hint: Iron Chef) He teamed with Sur La Table to launch a special home chef line, the Miyabi Fusion.

According to Sarah Jay, author of Knives Cooks Love, "buying a knife is a little like buying shoes: You have to try it out to know how it fits," so we do recommend trying one in a store first (or only purchasing one online until you know you like them). But these knives are just as quality as their pro-grade counterparts (would Morimoto sign off on anything else?). Each forged 65-layer blade features a core of VG10 super-steel clad on each side with 32 layers of stainless steel. They've been ice-hardened for toughness, flexibility and corrosion resistance to ensure they're well worth every penny you spend. They're finished by a master craftsman using the traditional Japanese honbazuke blade-honing technique. In short, these blades are no joke.

Now, a full set of Miyabi knives is going to set you back about $600 for a full seven-piece block. But once you feel one of those babies in your hand, you'll know your investment was worth it. If you're low on funds, you can buy them one at a time for between $75 and $200 each. (Sur La Table, prices vary) 

Don't forget to invest in the Sur La Table knife sharpener to make sure your set keeps going strong. If you buy at a retail location, they all offer complimentary knife-sharpening services to customers twice a year. But you can also look for these knives at other online retailers like Ebay and Amazon.

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Heather Barnett is a freelance writer and foodie whose work has been featured in blogs, websites, magazines, and TV and radio ads. She spends her free time relaxing with her soulmate, Keith; her dog, Mosby "The Fly Slayer;" and Felix the Fish. You can follow her on Twitter @HireHeather.