The Miyabi Yanagiba knife is a kitchen blade with presence - at 24cm long it is most likely to be the largest addition your kitchen collection. It takes its name from the Japanese for ‘willow leaf’ due to the long, narrow shape of the blade, and is It is traditionally designed for sushi and sashimi, which will indicate how fiercely sharp it is.
It's blade is asymmetrical in design, with only one side being sharp, the other flat to give perfect slices. The asymmetry means the knife is slightly heavier than its double edged counterparts which makes it better equipped to deal with tougher tasks. The back of the blade is very slightly concave to make smaller cutting tasks easier to perform.
Although it is ideal for cutting and filleting fish, it is also suitable for cutting and carving meat, particularly into thin slices. It is a specialized blade and as such isn’t the tool you’d use for general kitchen jobs like chopping onions or vegetables. These would be more suitable to the general purpose santoku-style blade.
It has a very comfortable D-shape to its handle which allows for great control of the blade. The handle is made from stainless steel and Micarta, a compound of linen and resins, giving it a perfect weight and balance, both of which are key to excellent knife-work.
The Miyabi range features a number of different blades, all which come with a lifetime guarantee, for various kitchen tasks. They are endorsed by retired Japanese celebrity chef Rokusaburo Michiba, who has a key understanding of the importance of a good knife for preparation in the kitchen.
Miyabi Yanagiba, around £130, available in good cook shops, department stores and online.