STARTS WITH SHARP KNIVES.
THAT’S WHY WE VISITED A 300 -
YEAR - OLD KNIFE MANUFACTURER
TO FIND SOME OF THE BEST
KYO-HAMONO IN THE WORLD.
We entered a tiny, dimly lit factory that has just one room. Only Tatsuya Shirai, age 32, sits here amidst flying, glowing sparks. Ten years ago, he entered an apprenticeship to become an artisan, a knife maker. He works with the most crucial blade-making stage in the forging process. As we watched, he carefully inspected his most recent work of art. “Learning and working here fulfills a life-long dream,” he said, “I always wanted to learn a trade and create something with my hands.”
respect for the craftsmanship,
dedication, and skills that reside
in this man’s hands. Hands that
are passing on a 300-year old
tradition into the future.
a nerd when it comes having
a well-equipped kitchen?
We special ordered 7 knives from
Yoshisada Cutlery, a 10-generation
Master Tatsuya Shirai created the
knives and we customized them with
a number from 1 to 7.
The demand for good knives evolved via the imperial court and surrounding society when Kyoto was the capital and home to the imperial family (794–1868). Consequently, specialized tools were a necessity for the arts and everyday living. There were special knives for doing ikebana (flower arrangement), making kyo-sensu (fans) and kyo-ningyo (dolls), and of course, for preparing kyo-kaiseki (Kyoto’s traditional seasonal cuisine). Japan and Japanese artisans have always been recognized worldwide for producing quality knives. Especially the Kyoto region, which is rich with natural resources, such as clean water, excellent soil, and other valuable materials. Taken together, these and other details contributed to the industry’s development in the Kyoto region.
a well-equipped kitchen? We special ordered 7 knives from
Yoshisada Cutlery, a 10-generation knife manufacturer.
Master Tatsuya Shirai created the knives and we customized them
with a number from 1 to 7.