Tanaka Hamono Bunka-bocho 165mm Tasō-kō Multi-layer Shirogami #1
We'll admit it was tempting to label Tanaka san's smart bunka-bocho a 'damascus' knife, with all the mystery and romance that little marketing slip-of-the-tongue implies.
Trouble is, there are steel purists in Japan who don't really go along with the idea of a tasō-kō ('multi-layer') blade being labelled 'damascus' (we have the strong impression Tanaka san is one).
For one thing this fine bunka blade is forged from Yasugihagane - Shirogami#1 - and not subcontinental wootz. Then there's the fact nobody in the world actually knows how to forge a true damascus blade...
So it's a tasō-kō bunka, and that's OK. You get the beauty of folded steel with those delicate flowing lines, you get the food release benefits, you get the wonderful cutting feel of one of Japan's most lauded cutlery steels. You get a tall-ish black-forged all-rounder of moderate length for everyday use, with easy sharpening and a long-life edge. All good, just don't mention the 'D' word.
Matsubara knives are characterized by a slender spine; this means they're comparatively light for their length and profile. Traditional lightness in combination with Tanaka Kama Kogyo's high-grade handles, quality steels and Japanese sharpness adds up to a lot of cutting pleasure in the kitchen.
|Blade steel:||YSS Shirogami#1 | nantetsu|
|Bevel:||Ryōba double bevel|
|Blade construction:||Tasō-kō multilayer|
|Left-handed available:||Handle and blade suit both hands|
|Ferrule:||Suigyu (water buffalo horn)|
|Handle thickness:||27mm x 22mm|
|Weight in hand:||135g
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