Global Knives Review title with picture of 4 Global knife block sets

Global Knives Review:  Are They As Good As They Say?

By Bobby B.  |  Brands

Global Cutlery makes some of the most unique kitchen knives in the entire world.  Unlike most, Global’s knives are made almost entirely out of steel.  This gives them an ultra-modern, industrial look that so many chefs really like.

It may be hard to discern at first, but Global knives are Japanese-made.  As mentioned above, they’re made almost entirely out of stainless steel, an alloy called CROMOVA 18, which provides great stain resistance and creates a very sharp cutting edge.  The blades are heat treated to a hardness of 56-58 which makes them durable and allows for good edge retention.

Though it’s not readily apparent, Global knives are stamped not forged.  This is one reason why they are less expensive compared to other brands such as Wusthof or Shun.  They also have no tang, and no bolster.  Therefore, to balance the knife, they fill the hollow handles with sand.

The signature characteristic of Global knives is their straight edge blades.  Unlike most Western-style knives that have a standard beveled edge, Global grinds their edges to a point resulting in a blade that is sharper and has increased edge retention.  The blade performs like a Japanese-style knife would; yet, it has the durability that we typically see with Western-style knives.

Global Knife Collections

Global classifies their knives into 4 different collections.  The most well-known and common is the “Classic”, but they also have the NI, SAI, and UKON.  Each has its own unique characteristics as you’ll see below, and all are made in Japan.

Example of the 4 Global Knife Collections
Global Classic Chefs Knife

Global Classic Knives

The original Global knife. Designed by Komin Yamada and first manufactured in 1985 this Classic collection has remained unchanged .  Its steel blade (CROMOVA 18) maintains its edge longer than most and sand in the hollow handle provides perfect balance between it and the blade.

Global NI Chefs Knife

Global NI Knives

This is the latest knife in the Global collection.  It brings with it many of the Classic’s features, but in an innovative Asian-inspired design.  It does contain a slightly thicker blade with increased weight and a rounded spine for additional comfort and control-ability when used in the kitchen.

Global SAI Chefs Knife

Global SAI Knives

The SAI collection pays respects to the sword-making tradition known as “Samurai”.  The 7 black dots in the handle express the Samurai’s moral principles and codes of honor.  A SAI knife has a special 3-ply blade using a CROMOVA 18 core with a beautiful hand-hammered finish applied.

Global UKON Chefs Knife

Global UKON Knives

The UKON knife is a perfect blend of Global’s great respect for traditional sword-making with a modern twist for performance and contemporary designs.  C.A.T.R.A. testing has recognized the state-of-the-art UKON knife edge as 10% sharper out of the box.  

Best Global Knife Sets

You can buy Global knives individually to get just the knife you’re looking for, or you can save a few bucks getting an entire set of knives that match and come with a unique, convenient, and coordinating knife block.  This is the route we’d go.  Here are the top 4 sets we’d recommend, starting with our favorite!

Global Classic 7pc Bamboo Knife Block Set
The 7 Global Classic Knives included in the Ikasu block set

Knives Included:

3″ Parinig Knife, 4.5″ Utility Knife, 5″ Prep Knife, 5.5″ Nakiri Knife, 8″ Chef’s Knife, 8″ Bread Knife

Blade Material:

CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Bamboo Wood / Acrylic


  • Smaller set fits easily in any kitchen
  • All the basic knives you need in Global’s Classic collection
  • Great price per knife on this affordable set


  • Might not include every knife you need
  • The acrylic block isn’t a favorite for everyone

Global Classic Knives Review:

This is a popular Global knife set.  It contains all the basic, necessary knives and no fluff that would just add to the cost.  It’s nice and small and easily fits on any kitchen’s counter.  Perfect if you like the traditional look of the Classic series.  The price is great on this set which is probably a big reason it’s so popular.  Click below to check it out!

Knives Included:

7.5″ Chef’s Knife, 6″ Utility Knife, 6.5″ Bread Knife, 3.5″ Paring Knife

Blade Material:

3-Ply Blade w/ CROMOVA 18 Stainless Steel and Corrosion-Resistant 18/8 & Hammered Finish

Block Material:

Stainless Steel


  • Modern Look & Feel
  • Stainless Steel knife block is easier than wood to keep clean
  • Best Global SAI Knives set in our opinion


  • Might still need a few other knives

Global SAI Review:

This is a small set of SAI Global knives with a very modern design.  We love the SAI knives and this is our favorite set that they’re included in.  Unfortunately, there aren’t many knives included in this set, but you can always buy more SAI knives separately to round out your collection.  It appears the stainless steel knife block will hold a couple extra knives.

Global Classic Kabuto 7pc Knife Block Set
7 Global Classic knives included in the Kabuto set

Knives Included:

3″ Parinig Knife, 4.5″ Utility Knife, 5″ Prep Knife, 5.5″ Nakiri Knife, 8″ Chef’s Knife, 8″ Bread Knife

Blade Material:


Block Material:

Black Kabuto plastic w/ Stainless Steel Accents and Acrylic sides


  • Unique, modern and minimalistic design
  • Includes the popular Global Classic knives 
  • Great balance


  • Only 6 knives included

Global Knives Review:

This 7pc Kabuto knife set uses the exact same 6 knives that the Ikasu knife set above.  Both combine to be the most popular Global knife sets available currently.  They are great, average sized sets that fit perfect in your kitchen.  There is no waste on knives you won’t use and if you want to add to your knife collection, you can do that by buying any one of the MANY other Global Classic knives separately here.  You can’t go wrong with one of these sets.  Just decide which matches your kitchen decor better.

Global NI 6pc Knife Block Set
6 knives that are included in the Global NI block set

Knives Included:

3.5″ Paring Knife, 4.5″ Flexible Utility Knife, 6.25″ Chef’s Knife, 8″ Chef’s Knife, 9.5″ Bread Knife

Blade Material:


Block Material:

Bamboo Wood


  • Great balance
  • 2 sizes of Chef’s knife
  • Best Global NI knife set


  • Only 5 knives included

Global Ni Series Review:

The Global NI Knives in this block set have a great design!  We really like the look and feel of these modern, all stainless steel knives.  They feel substantial in your hand and are so well-balanced.  The dimples on the handle provide added grip to keep your hand from slipping.  The shape of the blade is unique and brings a “sword-like” feel to the knives.

Global Steak Knives

Global makes a handful of steak knife sets in different shapes, sizes, and quantities.  Many of them can be found on Amazon.

The most popular, and perhaps most unique set of global steak knives, are shown here.  This is the GTF-4001-4 set of steak knives.  Take a look, they get AMAZING reviews at Amazon.

There’s another unique set of Global SAI steak knives (not pictured) that can be found at Amazon as well – Global SAI Steak Knives, 4pc

Global Kitchen Shears Review (GKS-210)

We wanted to make sure that we mentioned Global’s GKS-210 kitchen shears.  They’re a favorite among home chefs and can come in quite handy.  They’re made of the same CROMOVA 18 stainless steel that their knives are made from and they carry a lifetime warranty.

Yep, you guessed it, they look “different” too.  They are another ultra-modern, all stainless design as you can see in the image below.

Global Kitchen Shears

Global Knife Review Summary

Global Cutlery makes some unique, modern and contemporary designs.  Most of their knives are hand-made entirely of stainless steel with hollow handles filled with sand for perfect balance.  All are made from their proprietary blend of a corrosion-resistant stainless steel called CROMOVOA 18.

There are upsides and downsides to owning Global kitchen knives, many of which are based on personal preference.  However, you should always consider both to ensure your making an informed purchasing decision.  Based on our experience and customer reviews, below is a general list of things to keep in mind as you consider Global’s knife collections and knife sets.


  • Quality steel blades that are razor sharp and have good edge retention
  • Modern designs with non-slip, ergonomic, dimpled handles
  • No bolster (makes sharpening at home easier)
  • Balanced weight (sand in the handle)
  • Well priced
  • Limited lifetime warranty


  • Stamped blades
  • No tang (risk of a weak point between the blade and the handle)
  • Blades more prone to chipping (the sharper the edge the more brittle it can be)
  • No bolster to act as a finger guard

Overall, are Global knives as good as they say?  Yes!  We believe so. Global knives are built to last and will be a great investment when properly cared for.  You can buy higher-end, more expensive products from other knife makers, but for the price, quality, and modern, all-stainless look, Global knives are in a league of their own.

Global Knife FAQs

Where Are Global Knives Made?

Global Cutlery produces their knives in Niigata, Japan at Yoshikin’s factory.  This is a hot-bed area of very skilled sword and knife makers with a long history of traditional workmanship.

Are Global Knives Dishwasher Safe?

It is not recommended to put Global knives in a dishwasher as it can be damaging to the sharp edges of the blade.  The heat and detergents often used in dishwashers can be harmful to stainless steels with high carbon content, including CROMOVA 18.  the correct way to wash your Global knives is to do it by hand using warm soapy water, making sure to dry them immediately after washing and prior to putting them away.   

How are Global Knives Made?  Are They Forged or Stamped?

Global knives appear to be a single piece of stainless steel, however they are actually stamped pieces that are then put together to make the knives in the factory.  It’s common to hear that a knife is “hand forged”.  In this case, the main pieces are stamped out, but then hand-assembled.

What Angle Should Global Knives Be Sharpened to?

Global knife blades should be sharpened to a 10 to 15 degree angle, producing a razor-sharp edge.  Global Cutlery recommends doing this on a whetstone or ceramic stone.  A quick word of caution…this blade is very thin when compared to Western-style knives, so care should be taken not to chip the blades by cutting through bone or other hard materials.

Are Global Knives Single or Double Bevel?

Unlike many other Japanese knives, most Global knives are double bevel like their Western counterparts.  However, they are sharpened to a straight edge and not a bevel edge, which is thinner and sharper, more like their Japanese brethren.

How Should Global Knives Be Stored?

The storage of your Global Cutlery is important to its longevity.  By storing the knives properly in a correct-fitting knife block, it will extend the life and wear of your Global knives.  It will also ensure that the blades stay sharper longer since they won’t be getting chipped, or otherwise dull, moving them in and out of drawers.  Another acceptable storage idea for Global knives would be on a magnetic knife holder.  This has the same effect of keeping them out of the drawers and reducing the chances of chipping a blade.

Are Global Knives Any Good?

In short, yes Global makes good, qualitiy knives.  They are a well-respected brand that uses excellent materials to make uniquely designed knives that perform well.  If you like the look of all stainless steel and the dimpled handles than Global would be a good fit for you and your kitchen.