The Shun Sora Collection brings Shun’s premium cutting experience into a more affordable price range. They are a step above entry-level blades in terms of cost, but they represent an incredible value, offering materials and performance that are a cut above their competitors. There are a full range of options available in the lineup, from paring knives to serrated knives and full-size chef and santoku knives. Let’s check a few of them out.
The blades are unique and are at the heart of what makes these knives special. You can basically think of them like a jigsaw puzzle. The top section and a bottom section are laser cut for precision and braze welded together, forming a pattern that calls to mind classic Japanese sword hamon lines.
The spine side is a solid piece of high-polished 420 stainless steel which keeps the materials cost down.
The edge section is where you truly get your money’s worth and is what sets these knives apart. They put high-performance steel right where you need it most, the edge itself, with laminated steel featuring a VG-10 cutting core.
Shun’s proprietary process is a modern twist on an old blacksmithing trick seen, for example, with axe makers on the American frontier. Where quality steel was scarce, the cutting bit of the axe head could often be embedded in lower quality steel.
Materials aren’t nearly so scarce nowadays, but Shun’s composite blade technology allows them to bring you maximum performance without the high premium usually associated with it. There is no need to worry about the durability of the weld either. We’ve seen this process before from Kershaw, one of Shun’s sister companies, on blades like the Leek and the Junkyard Dog for years to great success.
The thin factory edges on the Sora kitchen knives are extremely sharp right out of the box and they are sharpened to a very acute 16-degree bevel, making them feel even sharper and cut like a laser
The handle and tang designs owe a lot to classic Japanese kitchen cutlery, with a hidden tang and handle shape both updated for a more modern aesthetic. The polymer handles are another way to keep the cost down, but they still feel nice in the hand. They are gorgeously streamlined and are easy to index in use.
Here we have the Shun Sora 8” Chef Knife, which is a more of a Japanese gyuto than it is a typical western-style chef knife. Featuring less belly at the tip, you don’t have to raise your wrist quite as much when chopping or mincing.
Popular as a compliment or even a substitute for the chef knife is a good Santoku, and I personally use Shun Sora 7” Santoku in my own kitchen. I’m usually not a big fan of scallops behind the edge. They are supposed to help keep food from sticking, but sometimes it is hard to feel the benefit. Not so with this knife, as they are deep enough to truly make a difference.
Both of these larger blades are great all around utensils and are at their best when using them in a push-cut style typical of eastern kitchen knives. The feel of the cuts when using these knives is addictive. There is just so little resistance! You’ll probably find yourself looking for recipes that require a little more cutting just so you get another chance to use the knives.
We’re also fans of the 6” Sora Chef Knife. One has even found it’s way into the kitchen of one of our video producers. It makes a great companion knife with a little more overall belly than the 8” Chef or 7” Santoku. This helps it when cutting meat and for other slicing needs.
I think the 6″ Chef is also the best in the Sora lineup when it comes to mincing. Thanks to the curvature of it’s edge it has a nice, gentle landing on the cutting board, making it a joy to use.
Of course, your kitchen wouldn’t be complete without a good paring knife, and I’m a big fan of the Sora 3.5” Paring Knife.
The thin, lightweight blade is well-balanced and handles with ease, and can be very precise at things like skinning a potato or trimming vegetables or fruit. It even has a little offset to the edge angle, making it easy to use when doing tip-down pull cuts along a cutting board.
As you can see, we plainly love these Sora knives from Shun. If you’ve never experienced a truly sharp kitchen knife, it is a game-changing experience, and the Sora knives can cut with some of the best knives out there.
Pick one up today from KnifeCenter.com
To see these knives in action and actually get a chance to win one of the Sora 8″ Chef Knives, be sure to check out this video on the official Knife Center YouTube Channel!