The path to giving yourself better knives generally begins with a dull knife edge slipping, maybe on a bit of particularly slimy onion skin, into your fingertip. Once the realization that the knife set you were given ages ago isn’t cutting it anymore hits, new knives are in order. Do your finger a favor and skip the first step.

Japanese knifemaker Fujiwara Kanefusa weaves an 800-year old history of blade-making into affordable, gateway-level kitchen knives that are tough and, surprisingly, ergonomic. The Fujiwara Kanefusa FKM Series, which is on Massdrop for nearly half its usual cost, opts to employ a Western-style handle with an elevated back grip — this is a small but useful addition, as Japanese kitchen knives’ handles generally provide very little in the way of grip guidance, which can create a learning curve for those new to them. It’s made out of black pakkawood, a hardwearing material typical of knives meant for daily use. The blade’s Rockwell rating (scale that measures hardness) of 55-58 is also a few degrees tougher than the Victorinox Fibrox, another immensely popular entry-level knife, and on the same level as what you’d expect from a survival knife. As someone whose sliced, diced, chopped out three years worth of meals with the Santoku model, I can fully attest to its durability.

The deal has five days left and will ship mid-to-late April. It includes the Petty ($36), Santoku ($46) and Gyuto-style ($51) knives (choose your preference at checkout).

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