Hidden in the simple, strong look is a hint of nostalgia and warmth. Once you hold this knife in your hand, you will be able to feel the significance that is similar to the impression of an experienced knife craftsman.
"A true, fine blade can be judged by its appearance." If you agree, this knife may be the one for you.
Aogami Blue steel (Yasuki Aohagane) No. 2
Magnolia natural wood
L 320 × W 56 × H 20 mm
Banshu-Miki, HYOGO & Sakai, OSAKA
Ease of sharpening
Aogami Blue Steel #2 (Yasuki Steel), which is a top-quality material used for professional Japanese knives, is utilized in this model with an excellent edge. Aogami #2 is known for its long-lasting edge, smooth sharpness and ease of whetting.
The blade contains steel for optimum sharpness, and therefore, it tends to rust easily. The black layer left during the quenching process helps make the rust less noticeable.
The handle is made of natural magnolia wood, which is known for its hard, water-resistant, and anti-slip qualities. The chestnut shape helps with ideal grip and fits well in your hand. The charm of the wood increases with usage, and the contrast between the black blade and handle is simply artistic.
The collar, which joins the handle and blade, is made from water buffalo horn. This is a rare material, as a water buffalo has only two horns. This knife is ideal for long-term usage, thanks to its strong resistance to water and extreme hardness.
To pursue the finest quality, our production process - forging, adding the blade and attaching the handle - is completed in different locations that are known for each individual practice.
Kuroiki, which carries a simple, robust, yet warm look is handcrafted in Takefu (Fukui) and Sakai (Osaka).
播 州 三 木 Banshu-Miki, Hyogo
Pass Mt. Rokko by train or car from Kobe, and keep heading north-east for an hour or so - that is Miki City, Hyogo.
The area was completely burned down after a major battle in Miki during the Sengoku period. However, thanks to the reconstruction projects of Hideyoshi Toyotomi, who won this battle, carpenters gathered from all over Japan. Accordingly, the number of blacksmiths also increased to meet the demand for tools.
As time went by, those carpenters became migrant workers to different locations in Japan. Hence the good reputation for their tools also spread throughout the country, making Miki famous for the production of blades and hardware. Today, Miki is counted as one of the leading places for producing traditional carpentry tools and modern hardware.
Metalworks from this area is called "Banshu Miki Uchihamono." Like "Tosa Uchihamono", they are crafted by hammering iron using forging techniques.
As each piece is hand-crafted by craftsmen, mass production is simply impossible. However, by taking advantage of flexible forging, a variety of blades have been traditionally made to date, including short knives, planes and industrial construction tools.
堺 Sakai, Osaka
Sakai is a commuter town located in the Southern area of Osaka, and is the second most populous city in the prefecture after Osaka City.
Sakai is known for having many ancient burial mounds. Once, blacksmiths gathered and lived in Sakai from all over Japan to create tools for the construction of the mounds. This is believed to be the reason why Sakai is famous for forging.
In the Edo period, the shogunate's order included exclusive production of "Tobacco knives" in Sakai - knives for chopping tobacco leaves, which led to Sakai's fame for bladesmithing. As time went by, the technique has continued to be inherited by craftsmen over countless generations. To date, Sakai has been producing stunningly sharp knives with the best quality.
The production of forged knives in Sakai is based on the division of labor within each district.
To complete a single knife, each step, from forging and adding a blade, to attaching a handle, is handled by traditional specialists. It is expected to include more than 30 processes of knife creation until completion.
The significance of Sakai knives lies in the excellent forging and sharpening techniques which determine the edge of the blade.
Knives from Sakai are said to be used by over 90% of professional chefs of Japanese cuisine. Sakai is the leader of the world-class culture of Japanese bladesmithing.
Precautions For Use
To prevent rust
- Use dish soap to thoroughly wash the knife, and immediately wipe moisture away with a dry cloth before storage.
- Steel gives an excellent edge to a knife but the drawback is a tendency to rust easily. Do not leave a wet knife for more than 30 minutes. Air-drying should also be avoided.
To prevent damage
- Do not ever put the knife in the dishwasher.
- Do not hold the knife over a fire or put in the oven. To disinfect the knife, please use hot water.
To prevent chips
- Do not use the knife on a hard surface, such as on a metal, stone, or glass cutting board.
- Do not cut hard objects, including frozen food and bone-in meat.
- Avoid putting multiple knives in the same drawer, as they may touch each other and chip.
- Handle the blade with care.
- Store the knives in a safe place and out of reach of children at all times.