Hokiyama Yanagiba Shirogami 270mm (10.6")
- Knife Care
Hokiyama Yanagiba Shirogami in 270mm (10.6") blade length is a thin and long traditional Japanese knife. Yanagiba knives were designed to cut thin slices of raw fish (ideal for sushi lovers), and also for cutting large pieces of meat (eg steaks). It's a single bevel knife, which means only right-handed users can wield it. While we usually find yanagibas in sushi and Japanese restaurants, there is a growing trend of home cooks owning these beauties for the weekend sushi or BBQ parties.
The heart of this knife is made of Hitachi's White steel 2, also named Shirogami 2 which was hardened to around 61-62 HRC.
❗ Because Shirogami steel does not contain chromium, such a blade will develop some patina during use. The advantage of this steel, however, is that it has a very fine, gentle sharpness, is easy to sharpen and stays sharp for a very long time. Ballistol oil is recommended for the care of such blades.
🚩 The blade is protected by a thin anti-corrosion oil coating that protects it from rust and scratches before it gets into the hands of its owner. Therefore, wash the knife thoroughly before using it for the first time to remove this thin protection.
Hokiyama blacksmiths fitted a Japanese (Wa) handle with a buffalo horn ferrule. The handle is made of the most commonly used handle wood in traditional Japanese knives - magnolia wood. Magnolia wood is a soft, light-colored wood that needs some extra maintenance as it can stain easily, so we recommend having clean hands before using the knife. It is preferred wood of Japanese sushi chefs due to its antiseptic properties and it is easy and cheap to rehandle as there is an abundance of magnolia handles on the market.
Suitable for first-time buyers of a Japanese kitchen knife. It can also serve as a wonderful gift!
Hokiyama Hamono is a leading smithy in Kochi Prefecture in Japan. They have recently celebrated their 100-year anniversary, founded in 1919. Hokiyama Hamono is known for their quality as they follow the tradition of hand-made blades that has been around for over 800 years. They retain the handiwork and traditional craftsmanship that is passed down from generation to generation while striving for the ever-new knowledge and innovation. Despite the fact that they make knives according to the traditional methods, they follow the modern technological guidelines in the field of metallurgy, material processing and innovations in production processes. Hokiyama, in their own words, is a fusion of tradition (土佐 一), innovation (無限) and practicality (左近).
Each knife in the smithy goes through about 50 different processes that are performed and controlled by experienced craftsmen. Among the various steps required to make a Hokiyama knife is a special process called Rolling-Forging. It enables the efficient and uniform production of knives while maintaining the properties and qualities of Japanese steel.
Blade shape: Yanagiba
Steel type: Shirogami #2
Blade construction: Ni-mai / Migaki
Hardness (HRC scale): 61-62
Overall length: 415mm (16.3")
Blade length: 270mm (10.6")
Blade height: 33mm (1.3")
Spine thickness: 4.0mm (0.16")
Weight: 185g (6.5 oz)
Handle length: 140mm (5.5")
Handle type / wood: Japanese / Magnolia
Kanji on the blade:
Location of the smithy: TOSA / Kōchi 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.
📩 Read our SHIPPING & RETURNS policy for more info. We strive to solve any issues fast and with as little hassle for you. If you have some additional questions, please contact us.
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.