Best Shun Knives 2017 – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Have you ever sat in front of the TV watching those online shopping shows where they showcase knives with all those riveting demo tricks? Well, you can stop now. Let me give you a thorough shun knives review to help you choose your own, especially if you don’t own one yet! I grew up in a household where kitchen tools were a matter of necessity rather than luxury, so if a knife can cut, it’ll suffice.

I’ve tried many different knives since I’ve started living on my own, most of which would last a few months before I have to toss them back out. Needless to say, Shun knives were a great discovery. The oldest Shun knives I have are about three years old, and they're still fabulous!


What Makes Shun Knives Special?

You’re probably wondering what the fuss is all about, considering that Shun knives are definitely not the cheapest in the market. There are several reasons why you would want to spend money on great quality knives, but it oil boils down to quantity over quality.

You may be able to buy a good number of knives for the price of one Shun knife, but when you think about long term costs, then you’ve got some rethinking to do.

Made Of VG-10 Stainless Steel

Shun knives are made with VG-10 stainless steel. This type of steel is specially built to be harder and less brittle, but also more flexible than traditional steel makeups. The VG-10 core is clad with a total of 16 full layers of SUS410 high-carbon stainless steel on both sides, making up a total of 33 layers.

These layers protect the VG-10, but they also create an exquisitely detailed surface very similar to Damascus or pattern-forged steel that were once used to make Samurai swords. As a result, the knives are utterly stunning to look at. Very much like the ancient Damascus knives but without their tendency to rust.

As an additional benefit, the slight patterning made on the knife blades help slice rather than crush delicate foods, and it also keeps cut food from sticking to the blade.

Hand-Crafted Durable Blades

I mentioned that the blades have a slight patterning fashioned on the blades. Shun knives are handcrafted in Seki, Japan. The blades are masterfully crafted, and incredibly sharp yet durable. Slicing meats and vegetables with them is a surreal experience because the sharpness of the knives generates very little resistance as you cut.

A Shun knife is highly recommended for any home chef who wishes to take their kitchen to the next level. It exhibits strong craftsmanship with its flowing pattern of layered steel. Aside from its exceptional aesthetics, what you'll get are knives that are sharp, durable, and corrosion-resistant.

Unlike machine-made knives, you know that these blades were made layer upon layer of forging and hammering.

Shaped For Performance

Unlike the traditional round-shaped knives, Shun knives are D-shaped to prevent the knife from twisting while you're holding it. It can also provide better stability and a firmer grip. The handle is made from ebony-colored Pakka Wood. It is a combination of hardwood veneer blends and waterproof resin. The result is a mix of warm traditional look and feel of wood but with the strength and durability of plastic.

For the most part, the blades and handles of Shun knives are designed to provide not only ergonomic comfort but also maximum safety for its users. Another great thing you're going to like about Shun knives is they all carry a lifetime warranty. They're also dishwasher-safe, though I prefer not to throw them in the dishwasher.

What About Sharpening My Shun Knife?

Are you lucky enough to have a mobile sharpening service roaming your neighborhood? There are professionals who sharpen kitchen knives. They often circle the neighborhood. Sadly, there’s not many left who do this, and it brings nostalgia just thinking about it.

You can bring your Shun knife to a professional, though. Is it necessary? No. But is it recommended? Yes. Why? Well, professionals are able to assess the knife’s edge’s bevel, and they can recreate it with great precision. They can also ensure that there’s no unnecessary removal of any more metal during sharpening. If you want to maintain your Shun knife’s original silhouette, I suggest you take your knife to the pros.

But if you want to sharpen the knife yourself, you can. Not sure how to sharpen a Shun knife? Watch this video for a demo.

Best Shun Knives And Sets You Should Try

When it comes to buying Shun knives, you have quite a bunch of options - either you buy them as a set or buy them as a single piece. Here are some great products in this line that are going to be worth your while, plus pros and cons to help you decide.

*Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

1. Shun Classic 10-piece Knife Block Set

Shun Classic 10-piece Knife Block Set

This Shun Classic Knife Block Set features lovely Damascus-clad blades and D-shaped PakkaWood handles in ebony. Of course, you can expect of all these blades to razor-sharp and to offer top performance. It also has Shun's exclusive high-performance VG-MAX steel to let you enjoy incredible edge retention for every single one of these blades.

The Shun Classic Knife Block Set is handcrafted in Japan, and comes with a limited lifetime warranty.


Editor's Rating: 97/100

Set Includes:

  • 3.5-inch Paring Knife
  • 4.5-inch Honesuki Knife
  • 5-inch Hollow Edge Nakiri Knife
  • 6-inch Utility Knife
  • 7-inch Santoku Knife
  • 8-inch Chef's Knife
  • 9-inch Hollow Edge Carving Knife
  • 9-inch Combination Honing Steel
  • Shun Multi-Purpose Kitchen Shears
  • 13-slot Deluxe Bamboo Knife Block


  • Look is unique and very eye-catching
  • 13-slot knife block gives you extra room for other knives
  • Perfect for almost all of your cutting needs
  • Cheaper than buying individually


  • Fillet knife not included
  • Expensive

2. Shun VB0718 Sora Hollow Ground Santoku Knife, 7-Inch

Shun VB0718 Sora Hollow Ground Santoku Knife, 7-Inch

This 7-Inch Sora Hollow-Grounds Santoku Knife features a VG10 cutting core with stainless steel on either side, creating a san mai edge that provides stain resistance. The blades have a mirror-polished Japanese 420J blade upper and a 16-degree cutting edge on either side. It is made with a traditional handle design in easy to care for textured TPE polymer.

The hollow-ground feature makes tiny air pockets which help with food release from the blade. Each handle is made with a textured TPE polymer handle that provides balance and is easy to maintain. The texture of each handle provides a tacky surface when wet, making them superior to use around juicy fruits, vegetables, and meat. A beautiful Shun knife at an incredible price point; you can afford to have one in every style!


Editor's Rating: 95/100

Price on Amazon: $79.95


  • Can be used for basic cutting needs
  • Hollow-ground feature prevents food from sticking to the blade
  • Outstanding Shun quality
  • Very classy design


  • You’ll have to pay for the full price of the knife
  • Hollow-ground design doesn’t for certain cutting needs

3. Shun Premier Chef's Knife, 8-Inch

Shun Premier Chef's Knife, 8-Inch

This 8-Inch chef's knife is a perfect all-purpose knife for chopping and slicing both meats and vegetables. Features layered Damascus steel with a striking, hand-hammered finish. Hand-hammered finish reduces drag when cutting, keeping foods from sticking to the knife blade. Premium pakka wood handle nestles comfortably into the curves of the palm and allows for a variety of comfortable and secure grips.

Shun Premier Chef’s Knife’s blade consists of a Japanese super steel, the high carbon VG-10. The VG-10 steel is popular for its edge retention. The 16-degree angle of the blade makes the Shun Premier one of the sharpest knives on the market.


Editor's Rating: 90/100

Price on Amazon: 


  • Can be used for basic cutting needs
  • 8-inch blade great for most cutting needs
  • Outstanding Shun quality
  • A great starter knife for basic cooking needs
  • Comes with a limited lifetime warranty


  • You’ll have to pay for the full price of the knife
  • Cutting is only limited to what the knife was designed for

4. Shun Classic 6-piece Ash Wood Knife Block Set

Shun Classic 6-piece Ash Wood Knife Block Set

The Shun Classic line highlights beautiful blades clad with Damascus stainless steel. The Pakka wood handles are ebony-colored and D-shaped. Expect the Shun Classic knife to have razor-sharp blades that offer top performance.

Shun's exclusive high-performance VG-MAX steel gives incredible edge retention. The Shun Santoku which has been rated consistently as one of the best knives on the planet comes with this set! This knife set is comes with a limited lifetime warranty.


Editor's Rating: 85/100

Price on Amazon: $399.95

Set Includes:

  • 3.5-inch Paring Knife
  • 7-inch Santoku Knife
  • 8-inch Chef's Knife
  • 9-inch Combination Honing Steel
  • Shun Multi-purpose Kitchen Shears
  • 8-slot Ash Wood Knife Block


  • Strong, durable and moisture-resistant handles
  • Great starter set for any kitchen
  • Cheaper than buying individually
  • Limited lifetime warranty


  • Bread knife not included
  • Fillet knife not included

5. Shun DM0706 Classic 8-Inch Chef's Knife

Shun DM0706 Classic 8-Inch Chef's Knife

This 8-inch chef's knife offers versatile slicing, chopping, and dicing capabilities for people who are only looking for basic kitchen performance. It's about 12 inches long and two inches wide. It is safe to use in the dishwasher, and of course, it comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

Are you tired of the friction caused by slicing? The Shun DM0706 Classic has a D-shaped handle that makes it comfortable for arthritic hands to hold. Not keen on the handle’s shape? You can also get it in reverse D-shaped style.

The handles are of course, made of Pakka wood which is NSF-certified; meaning it’s suitable for commercial kitchens. Although the knife is safe to put in a dishwasher, I highly recommend hand washing.


Editor's Rating: 80/100

Price on Amazon: $144.95


  • Can be used for basic cutting needs
  • Long blade great for certain cutting needs
  • Outstanding Shun quality
  • A great single knife to start with if you just want to test quality


  • You’ll have to pay the full price of the knife
  • Cutting is only limited to what the knife was designed for

Quality, Quantity, And Savings!

Yes, you got it! Our top choice for this review is the Classic Shun 10-pc Set. The primary reason being that while products are of course great, this 10-piece set can save you money in the long haul. Also, you don’t even have to start questioning your kitchen routines to determine what you might need the most.

Getting this set will give you all the Shun knives you need; not to mention the money you'll save from getting it as a set compared to the price of individual knives. If you can afford to get everything now, just do so! Shipping costs and gas money can amount to a lot, and those are factors we tend to forget when scrimping pennies on lower quality items.

Share this article if you found it useful. Thank you for reading!

Paula Hughes

I’m Paula, and I’m absolutely in love with food blogs. I’m a foodie at heart but being the mother of two small boys, it’s not always easy to keep up with fancy dinners… so I rely on the support of other blogging moms like me to help along the way.

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