Kawamura Aoki Warikomi Santoku 165mm (6.5")
Santoku knife is a versatile kitchen knife that will shine through all kinds of chopping and cutting on the kitchen board. Meat lovers will only miss a little bit of length with larger pieces of meat. Did you know that the word santoku means "knife of three virtues" in Japanese? The word san is number three, meaning that it can be used to prepare vegetables, fish and meat.
Kawamura Aoki Warikomi Santoku is not your common Japanese knife. Don't get us wrong, it checks all the important boxes. The core of the knife is made from one of the best steel currently available for kitchen knives (Yasuki Aogami #1 carbon steel) clad into softer layers of stainless steel (low maintenance!). It has a very thin blade profile, characterized by the classic, western-style handle which offers excellent grip and is suitable for both right and left-handed users.
The not-so-common feature is the color of the pakka wood handle. Emerald green is not a choice many Japanese blacksmiths decide fitting on their knives, but we feel it was a good choice. The knife definitely stands out but not in a flashy way.
The bolster is stainless and provides a smooth and comfortable transition between the handle and the blade. The appearance of the knife is complemented by a decorative copper ring. The knife is slightly heavier and therefore suitable for anyone who is used to heavier knives but wants sophisticated Japanese sharpness.
The center of the knife is Yasuki Blue #1 (Aogami) steel, which ranks at the very top of quality Japanese steels. It is extremely hard steel, which means that it retains super-fine sharpness for a long time despite its extensive and long-lasting usage. In addition, due to the high carbon content, the knife is very easy to sharpen. The outer layers are made of softer stainless steel, giving the knife extra protection from rust. Only the very edge of the blade will require additional maintenance (where Aogami steel is exposed).
The word warikomi refers to the process of wrapping softer steel around the harder, core steel. This provides protection and slightly greater rigidity of the hard core. The main advantage and property of these knives are that they are thin, sharp and hold a sharp edge for a long time. The majority of modern Japanese knives are made using this technique (san-mai cladding).
About the blacksmith:
Sakai Kikumori has been producing kitchen knives with skilled craftsmen since 1925. The chef's culture has been supported by the creation of traditional knives in Sakai, a town known as the home of kitchen cutlery in Japan. Kikumori smithy is considered one of the best knife makers in the region.
Blade shape: Santoku
Steel type: Yasuki Aogami #1
Blade construction: Warikomi / Kasumi & Migaki
Hardness (HRC scale): 63
Overall length: 290mm (11.4")
Blade length: 165mm (6.5")
Blade height: 45mm (1.8")
Spine thickness: 1.9mm (0.07")
Weight: 145g (5.1 oz)
Handle length: 115mm (4.5")
Handle type / wood: Western / Pakka wood
Kanji on the blade:
Blacksmith: Sakai Kikumori
Location of the smithy: SAKAI / Osaka 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.