The Shun Blue Steel series was developed in partnership with award-winning chef Chris Cosentino, known for his "nose to tail" philosophy of using the whole animal. These traditional Japanese knives feature a core of blue steel-a fine-grained carbon steel favored by professional chefs for its blazing sharpness- that is encased between two layers of stainless steel. This set equips you with three essential knives from the Japanese kitchen-the honesuki, the kiritsuke and a multipurpose utility/butcher knife-for covering a wide range of cutting tasks. Kiritsuke knife: In Japan, using a kiritsuke is a sign of a master chef. A skilled cook can do just about anything with this long-bladed knife, which functions like a chef's knife for all-purpose chopping, thin slicing and mincing. Utility/butcher knife: Excels at breaking down larger pieces of meat into cuts for cooking, and makes quick work of separating meat from bone. The size and shape also makes it an ideal all-purpose utility knife for the kitchen. Honesuki knife: With its triangular blade, the honesuki is used for boning poultry, but it also excels at other meat-trimming tasks, such as frenching a rack of lamb. Japanese san mai construction features carbon steel between two layers of stainless steel, providing the ultra-sharpness of carbon steel with the easier maintenance and added corrosion resistance of stainless steel. Blue steel, hardened to 61 Rockwell, is a super-hard, fine-grained carbon steel known for taking and maintaining an extremely sharp edge ("blue" refers to the paper the raw steel comes wrapped in). Mirror-polished blades have a bead-blasted edge where the two steels meet, showcasing the layered construction. Traditional Japanese octagonal handles are made of gray PakkaWood. Each knife includes a protective sheath.