Kato Yuki Ko-Bunka 135mm (5.3")
The striking new collection by the brand Masakage and blacksmith Yoshimi Kato is called Yuki - snow. The subtle whiteness of the blade and the light magnolia handle are designed to remind one of a snowy winter landscape. With a carbon steel core and stainless outer layers, this line represents the perfect blend of beauty and performance.
The shape of the Ko-Bunka makes it a multi-purpose knife, similar to the Santoku, and very easy to use. The word Bunka in Japanese means culture, and Ko small. The 135mm Yuki Ko-Bunka is a kind of cross between a Petty, Nakiri, and Mini Santoku knife. It has a characteristic Bunka shape with a pronounced tip reminiscent of Tanto blades. The knife will prove to be a great, versatile Utility knife ideal for chopping herbs, preparing vegetables, and even cutting smaller pieces of meat. With its versatile profile and original look, Yuki Ko-Bunka will become the star of your kitchen arsenal.
The finish of the blade is called Nashiji, the literal translation of the word being "the skin of an (Asian) pear". It refers to the slightly matted surface of the upper part of the blade, which not only has aesthetic value but is also practical, since the uneven surface reduces the sticking of the food to the blade when slicing.
The knife’s core is Shirogami 2 (White 2) steel, surrounded by two layers of stainless steel that also hugs the spine of the blade. The knife is hardened to 62-63 HRC. The combination of carbon steel core and stainless outer layers gives us the best of both worlds: easy maintenance and rust protection on one hand and sharpness, a silky smooth edge and efficient cutting and chopping on the other. Using the blade will give it a patina on the lower edge of the blade along the shinogi line separating the layers of steel. Despite the rust-proof outer layers, the knife must be cleaned with regular and careful wiping and occasional application of Ballistol oil is recommended.
Yoshimi Kato, a relatively young blacksmith from the famous Takefu village, known for many skilled blacksmiths, gave the blade a traditional japanese handle, oval in shape, made of magnolia wood with a ring made of red (stabilized) wood.
The knife is packed in a beautiful box - the natural blue colored paper has silver coloured kanji - signature by the master blacksmith. The box comes with a gift coin and a certificate stamped by the blacksmith and sharpener.
Blade shape: Bunka
Steel type: Shirogami #2 White
Hardness (HRC scale): 62-63
Overall length: 260mm (10.2")
Blade length: 135mm (5.3")
Blade height: 34mm (1.3")
Spine thickness: 2.5mm (0.1")
Weight: 72g (2.5 oz)
Handle length: 115mm (4.5")
Handle type / wood: Japanese / Magnolia
Kanji on the blade:
Blacksmith: Yoshimi Kato
Location of the smithy: ECHIZEN - TAKEFU KNIFE VILLAGE / Fukui Prefecture / Japan
☝️ Japanese kitchen knives in our store are handmade from natural materials. Slight variations in color, texture, weight and other dimensions are possible. We try to give a good photographic representation of our products, however computer screen resolution and colors do vary, so products might not look exactly as they are seen on screen.
☝️ THIS KNIFE MAY DEVELOP PATINA
Knives made of carbon steels can, due to their low chromium (Cr) content, discolor and develop patina. The knife is the most sensitive when it is still new and a patina had not developed yet, but later, patina will protect the blade. These types of knives require a touch more care:
✔ Wipe it regularly with a clean and dry cloth (you can also do this during use).
✔ After use, rinse it with lukewarm water and wipe it dry.
✔ Coat it regularly with knife maintenance oil or plain refined sunflower oil.
✔ Store the knife by wrapping it in paper which will absorb moisture and protect the blade.
A patina is a thin layer that forms on the surface of oxidized steel and protects it from further oxidation. The patina should not be confused with rust. Patina protects the blade, while rust causes corrosion and deterioration of material, so it should be removed (see Rust erasers).
→ For in-depth information about patina, read our dedicated post on patina.
GENERAL KNIFE CARE TIPS:
Blade wear depends on the quality of steel, usage and maintenance of the blade. Japanese knives are made of high-quality steels. Follow these tips to keep your Japanese knife in top-notch shape:
✔ Use a wooden, plastic or rubber cutting board.
✔ After use, wash the knives and wipe them dry.
✔ Use a magnetic rack, knife blocks, or use protective knife sheath (saya).
✔ A good cutting technique is your best bet to prolong sharpness.
✔ Use sharpening stones to sharpen the knife.
❗️Don’t leave the knife in the sink. Wash it by hand.
❗️Don’t wash the knife in the dishwasher.
❗️Don’t use the knife on glass, ceramics, marble or steel surfaces.
❗️Don’t scrape the food off the cutting board with the edge of the blade. Use the spine of the knife instead.
❗️A knife is a tool intended for specific use: it’s not a can opener, screwdriver, trowel, wire cutter, hammer etc. Kitchen knives are meant for preparing food.
→ For more details, read our guide on Maintenance of Kitchen Knives.
🤙 Contact us if you need some help. We reply within 1 business day.
- €10 - flat worldwide rate with DHL Express (express delivery, 2-5 business days).
- FREE - all orders over €300 (DHL Express).
- United Kingdom - shipping to UK costs €15. All orders are shipped with UPS Express (2-3 business days). Free shipping on orders over €300.
- Russia - shipping to Russia costs €40*. All orders are shipped with EMS postal service.
*or more, depending on the weight
DUTIES AND IMPORT TAXES:
We ship all orders DDP (duties & taxes paid). This means you will not be charged for any import fees and taxes (including VAT). All our prices are final. The price you see at checkout is the final price, no hidden costs.
- Europe: 1-2 business days
- US & Canada: 2-4 business days
- Rest of the World: 3-5 business days
Our return policy lasts 30 days. If more than 30 days have gone by since the day you received your order, unfortunately we can’t offer you a refund or exchange.
Each knife comes with:
✔️ Instructions and knife care leaflet.
✔️ A preventive Band-Aid – the knives are very sharp! 😉
✔️ Original box from the blacksmith, which we wrap in an old Japanese newspaper sheet – so every knife is ready to be passed on as a gift as soon as it hits your doorstep!
✔️ We also offer a special gift wrapping option with the traditional Japanese washi paper.
Still doubting which type of Japanese knife should best fit your needs? We created a quick, 5-steps quiz to help you find the perfect knife based on your cooking skills and the type of food you prepare.