Miyabi Kaizen Vs Artisan: Which Is The Better Pick?

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One shouldn’t be surprised to see the price tag of a single top Miyabi piece… A chef’s knife could go as high as $400!

But if you’re not willing to shell out that much but still want to own at least one of these, they do have other variants which are almost half the price given above.

Both Kaizen and Artisan of Miyabi are mid-priced (note that this is relative to other series under this brand) variants. Almost the same in price, the difference lies in the steel used and the overall design, so it’s hard to gauge these two because a lot depends on the preference of the user.

Miyabi Kaizen Artisan
Place of Origin Seki, Japan Seki, Japan
Steel Used VG 10 SG2 Micro-carbide powder steel
Construction Method Forged, hand-made Forged

Completely handmade

Blade Profile and Edge Flowery Damascus pattern Tsuchime (hammered) finish
Bolster Half, round Half bolster
Tang Full

 

Full

 

Handle Linen Micarta

Round, with stainless steel cap

D-shaped Cocobolo Pakkawood
Price Fairly pricey Expensive

The Miyabi Brand

The Miyabi company produces all their knives in Seiki City, Japan.

This is a region well-own for its knife-making history, so you can rest assured that any blades that the company makes will be top-quality.

In 2014, the famous cutlery company Zwilling acquired one of Japan’s leading knife manufacturers, which lead to the birth of the Miyabi brand.

Miyabi fuses Zwilling’s German knife engineering prowess with the rich tradition of Japanese bladesmithing.

This fusion results in an incredibly well-made collection of blades, all of which are durable, razor-sharp, and made with quality craftsmanship.

Miyabi Kaizen

Miyabi’s Kaizen collection is a very traditional set of Japanese blades.

They all sport traditional designs, with a D-shaped handle which is a staple of a lot of Japanese cutlery.

The collection utilizes a high-carbon steel recipe which allows it to hold its edge for a very long time.

One of the defining features of these knives is the Damascus construction.

This is a traditional technique that not only results in a strong and durable blade but also a beautiful pattern on the blade’s face.

The Kaizen collection is one of the more affordable ones from Miyabi, but it will still cost you significantly more than an average kitchen knife.

With that said, investing in a Miyabi blade is a great idea for serious cooks as these knives are made with close attention to detail and are built to last.

Miyabi Artisan

The Artisan collection is a premium pick from Miyabi.

It also features a hammered tsuchime finish.

This is a traditional Japanese technique that involves hammering the blade to give it a beautiful finish and ensure food won’t stick to it.

The collection features a beautiful D-shaped handle that is as ergonomic as it is durable.

And like with all Miyabi blades, it comes out of the box incredibly sharp.

So, if you’ve been on the hunt for a premium set of blades that would be a great fit in a professional kitchen, you might want to take a look at the Miyabi Artisan collection.

Miyabi Kaizen Vs. Artisan – Which Is The Best Option For You?

Construction

Both the Kaizen and Artisan collections use similar construction techniques.

Though, they do differ in some places.

Let’s start with the similarities.

Both of these blades utilize a similar.

The Kaizen collection features the Damascus technique, which, in knifemaking, involves hammering multiple thin layers of steel over a hard core.

The Artisan collection utilizes a tsuchime construction, which also involves hammering layers of steel over a tough core.

In the case of the Kaizen set, their knives have 48 layers of steel over the core.

The Damascus construction results in a beautiful wavy pattern on the face of the blade.

The Artisan only has two, but the tsuchime finish results in a beautiful blade that food doesn’t stick to.

The Kaizen set utilizes Zwilling FC61 steel at the core.

This is a high carbons steel recipe that makes for a great material for blades.

The Artisan uses an SG2 micro-carbide powdered steel recipe for the core, which is a very hard material ideal for kitchen knives.

All Miyabi products use their signature ice-hardening technique.

The process involves heating the blade and then quenching in water to bring it down to room temperature.

After that, it is immediately frozen and hardened at a temperature of -196C.

The result of this process is an incredibly tough blade that can hold its edge for a very long time.

The technique also allows for easier cleaning, as you can use soap and water to wash these blades without a second thought.

Product Offerings

The Kaizen collection features way more blades than the Artisan.

It features santoku, gyuto, shotoh, sujihiki, nakiri, and bread knives.

Some of these pieces are even available in multiple sizes, allowing chefs to really find the right model for them.

The Artisan collection, on the other hand, only features Gyuto, shotoh, santoku, sujihiki, and bread knives.

This doesn’t give you as much variety, but all the blades that are offered will be able to handle just about any kitchen task thrown at them.

So, if you’ve been looking for a varied collection, the Kaizen is the best pick for you.

However, if you want to have fewer but higher quality options, you might want to consider shopping from the Artisan collection.

Price

Miyabi knives do not come cheap.

Not only are they owned by a company known for premium products, but since their blades are of such high quality, they are worth the investment.

In the case of these two collections, the Kaizen is the more budget-friendly option.

With that said, these products will still cost you significantly more than an average kitchen knife.

You can get a basic Kaizen blade for under $150, but expect to pay upwards of $200 for the more premium picks.

The cheapest Artisan model will cost you under $200, but models in this collection can cost you more than $250.

Either way, if you choose to invest in a top-quality set of blades for your kitchen, you might want to consider the options that Miyabi has to offer.

Conclusion

So, there you have it.

An in-depth comparison of two very popular Miyabi collections.

Each of these collections is built with very close attention to detail.

They are hand-honed in Seiki, Japan, and will come out of the box with an incredibly sharp edge.

The Artisan collection is slightly more expensive, but most Miyabi knives are going to cost you a fair amount anyway.

When it comes to quality, the Artisan collection edges out the competition, but only by a little bit.

So, if you’re shopping on a budget and willing to get a blade with lower-quality steel, then the Kaizen would be your best bet.

Either way, both models would serve any chef very well in the kitchen and are definitely worth the investment.

Last Updated on September 2, 2021

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My name is Andy Wang, and I'm a retired chef. I used to work at the City Vineyard restaurant in NYC. I also had a culinary degree from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York. And this blog is where I share my love for knives and cooking with people like you.