Blacksmith: Shigeki Tanaka

Remarkable performance of kitchen knives may well be a synonym for Shigeki Tanaka. This young skilled craftsman that can boast with his radical design and mastery makes knives that are beloved by people all over the world.

Shigeki Tanaka is the fourth generation blacksmith. After his great grandfather, Mr. Gentaro, started making sickles in Meiji Period, the family men (Tanaka’s grandfather and father) specialized in traditional sickles.

His knife-making path began in the city of Takefu (the current city of Echizen in Fukui Prefecture), where Mr. Tanaka was trained to be a knife blacksmith. After three years of training, he joined his family’s factory in Miki City in 1999 and started making kitchen knives.

Although at that time the demand for sickles was gradually decreasing, his family continued mainly with their production. However, Tanaka’s father and uncle also made some knives in addition. Few years ago, after his father passed away, Tanaka took over and now the company focuses only on high-quality, handmade kitchen knives. He has four people working with him at the factory and all the knives are handmade. Due to his excellent knife-making skills, Shigeki Tanaka is one of the most recognizable blacksmiths in the city of Miki.

Click here to browse our collection of Tanaka knives.

We visited Tanaka's shop in spring 2016 to see his skills in action. We also took some pictures. 😄

Shigeki TanakaTypes of SteelHeating up the steelHot steelForging the steel to make Japanese knifeForging steel - detailHammering the steelShigeki Tanaka at his bestSteel cooling offMore hammerMaking of Japanese knivesShape of a Japanese knife

From raw materials to final product is a long and hard (hot) path, but the result is well worth it! Explore our Tanaka collection here.

Tanaka Santoku Wa 165mm (6.5")

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