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Starter Set

4 reviews
Regular price €180.00 (including shipping & taxes)

The Starter Set contains 2 knives:

  • Paring knife
  • Santoku

Japanese precision, Western robustness.

Best of both worlds.

  • Handmade
  • Razor-sharp Japanese steel
  • Perfectly balanced for comfort
  • Rust-resistant
  • Ultra durable, lifetime warranty
  • Blade guard included

Technical specifications

Blade Length / total length
20 cm (8") / 33 cm (13")
198 g (7 oz)
Thickness at the spine
2.0 mm
Blade angle
15˚, 50/50 symmetrical grind
Blade Material
440C high-carbon stainless steel
Blade Hardness
HRC 60 +/- 1
Steel heat treatment
Handle Material
Black hand-polished pakkawood

The “Tsuchime” 槌目(hammered) version features a hand-hammered blade.

Aesthetically appealing and functional, the hammered pattern creates tiny pockets of air between the blade and the food being cut.

This ancestral Japanese method reduces drag, thus preventing food from sticking to the blade.


Slicing, rock chopping, dicing, julienne, brunoise... Great food starts with precise cutting. The acute 15 degree edge ensures that you never bruise delicate ingredients and always preserve their freshness.
440C has more than 2x the carbon content than other premium steels. The blade, heat treated to HRC 59 hardness, keeps its razor-sharp edge cut after cut.
The perfect weight distribution and hand-polished pakkawood handle have been designed for you to cut effortlessly through the toughest food without compromising on comfort.
Customer Reviews
5.0 Based on 4 Reviews
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Filter Reviews:
KOTAI Starter Set ReviewKOTAI Starter Set ReviewKOTAI Starter Set Review
  • What do you prefer about your knife ? La maniabilité le confort d'utilisation et rasoir
  • How often do you cook ? NeverSometimesOftenVery oftenEvery day
  • Are you a professional or home chef ? Home Chef
Set de couteaux

Tres satisfait des produits De hautes qualités rasoir Et très agréable à utiliser dans des jolie coffrets en bois très belle présentation des couteaux j'en suis ravie à un prix défiant toutes concurrence A recommandé Vous pouvez dire aussi un grand merci à la chaine fandecouteaux Par l' aquelle jai découvert vos couteaux

Steve A.
France France
KOTAI Starter Set ReviewKOTAI Starter Set Review
  • Are you a professional or home chef ? Home Chef
  • How often do you cook ? NeverSometimesOftenVery oftenEvery day
  • What do you prefer about your knife ? Efficacité / prise en main (avec une esthétique au top)
Magnifique set de couteaux

Très beaux couteaux, tout à fait conformes à la description. La prise en main est fort agréable, le tranchant parfait (à voir sur le long terme mais rien à redire après une petite semaine d'utilisation). A l'usage j'affectionne tout particulièrement le modèle Gyuto qui me sert énormément et qui rempli toutes ses missions. Le couteau d'office est une excellente surprise sur le plan esthétique (je le trouve absolument magnifique) et il reste très pratique pour beaucoup de petites tâches (c'est le couteau préféré de ma femme). Le packaging est de très bonne facture également. Les boites en bambou sont très jolies mais je n'utilise finalement que la housse de protection de la lame (plus pratique pour un usage quotidien). Les boites ont trouvé une autre utilité dans la cuisine ;-). Rien à redire non plus sur le service après vente de Kotai (échanges très agréables suite à un petit souci dans les délais de livraison et très bonne réactivité de la marque). Un plus non négligeable !

France France
  • What do you prefer about your knife ? Quality feeling
  • How often do you cook ? NeverSometimesOftenVery oftenEvery day
  • Are you a professional or home chef ? Home Chef
Where is my paring knife ?

I cannot answer because I am still missing the paring knife in my order. But the Santoku is very light and easy to use

France France
  • Are you a professional or home chef ? Home Chef
  • How often do you cook ? NeverSometimesOftenVery oftenEvery day
  • What do you prefer about your knife ? Très jolis
Tres satisfaite

Tres jolis produits, envois soigné et rapide. Le service client est réactif et compréhensif, je recommande !

France France

Frequently asked questions

What is the steel used for the blade? Will it rust?

This knife is made of 440C steel from Japan. 440C is a high-carbon stainless steel, meaning that it combines the property of high-carbon steel (very hard due to the high carbon content of 0.95%+ and the vacuum heat treatment, therefore very sharp and able to keep its edge for much longer than other steels) and stainless steel (ability to resist corrosion and stains). So the blade will not rust, but you have to care for it properly by washing it with soapy water and drying it quickly after using it.

Do not put it in the dishwasher or leave it to soak in the sink.

Is it worth buying this knife or should I just get a 30€ knife from Ikea?

A “cheap” knife will end up costing you more in the long run, because it can break or turn dull. Low quality steel will not keep a sharp edge no matter how many hours you waste on sharpening, and you will end up having to buy a new knife every year or so.

There are plenty of “cheap” knives that cannot perform to decent standards and very few options for chefs who are passionate about cooking, need the right tools to assist them in their career or hobby but are not willing to overspend on a brand name. Get your KOTAI knife today for a lifetime of safe and delicious cooking.

How does the lifetime warranty work?

We believe that a good knife should be a chef's trusted partner for life.

That is why we are proud to stand behind our knives with a lifetime warranty.

If you find that your knife has any manufacturing defect, you may contact us at and we will repair or replace it for free.

On top of the lifetime manufacturing warranty, you can benefit from the protection of a 90-day money-back warranty in case your KOTAI knife does not live up to your expectations.

Try a KOTAI knife risk-free and return it within 90 days if you do not like it. No questions asked.

What is the difference between Japanese and German steels? Which is better?

German chef knives are generally heavier, thicker and made of “softer” steel.

Thicker blades combined with a wider, more obtuse cutting angle (typically 20-25 degrees on each side of the blade) mean that chefs must apply more pressure to slice through foods.

The softer German steel (typically HRC 55-56) will get dull faster and require more maintenance, with many cooks having to hone their knives before each use.

Japanese steel has a higher carbon content, making the blades significantly harder (HRC 58 and above). Due to their harder steel, the blades can be thinner and the edges sharper (with a more acute angle) than German knives. KOTAI knives are hardened to HRC 59-60 and sharpened to a 15° angle on each side of the blade. The harder, thinner blades make Japanese steel knives like KOTAI extremely agile, precise, and more effortless to use.

This does not mean that knives made of German steel are bad - the “softer” steel allows them to take a bit more abuse than high-end Japanese equivalents.

But Japanese steel knives are a different thing altogether. If you are used to German knives, you might find that you need to refine your knife technique to make the best out of the added precision that Japanese steel knives have to offer.

For example, chefs who are used to simply pressing downward to make a cut with a German style knife would have to adjust and slice forward or backward with their new Japanese style knife.

This will slice the food instead of crushing it, making effortless and precise cuts.