Muneishi Ao Iron Kiritsuke 210mm (8.3")
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A true all-rounder that can handle meat and vegetables. The blade is entirely forged by hand. It is 210mm long which means that it offers versatility and makes quick work also of larger pieces of meat.
The knife was forged in the san mai (“three layers”) style, which means that its core is made from hard steel that forms the blade’s cutting edge, while soft, pliable steel forms a protective jacket on both sides of the core and also prevents corrosion. On the transition between the core and the outside cladding, a gentle and exquisitely shaped kasumi line is visible.
The centerpiece of this knife is Hitachi's Super Blue Steel (Aogami Super), which is the very top quality of traditional Japanese steels. The Kuro-uchi (black) patina on the upper part of the knife gives it a unique and rustic appearance. This knife was heat-treated to around 63 HRC. It is a very hard steel, meaning that it will retain a super-fine sharpness for a long time. In addition, due to the high carbon content (1.4-1.5%), the knife is very easy to sharpen. Among the high carbon steels, Aogami Super is also the least sensitive to rust. It also contains 0.4% vanadium as an admixture for micronized metal grains, which gives the steel more toughness. Aogami Super is rated as the most advanced carbon steel. The outer layers are of softer, stainless steel, giving the knife extra rust protection.
Kuro-uchi finish, the unprocessed (black) part on the top side of the blade has already developed a dark patina, which protects the blade and gives it a traditional Japanese look. The knife bears visible impressions of the hand-forging process (round hammer dents on the blade), which gives it a beautiful finish and also prevents food from sticking to the blade.
The handle (traditional Japanese Wa) is oval and smooth, with no discernible transition between the walnut and maple wood. It’s suitable for both left- and right-handed users.
Muneishi smithy was founded in 1955. Hirotaka Muneishi, the second-generation knife smith, is renowned for manufacturing forestry knives such as axes and machetes for the local woodsmen. Kosuke Muneishi, the third-generation blacksmith and now the head of the company, has since branched out to making kitchen knives. He mostly uses Aogami Super steel and performs all the steps himself: tempering, forging, hammering and edging knives. His knives have very nice grinds, good profile, and are very affordable.
|Steel type:||Aogami Super|
|Hardness (HRC scale):||63
|Overall length:||346mm (13.6")|
|Blade length:||210mm (8.3")|
|Spine thickness:||3.35mm (0.15")|
|Weight:||220g (7.4 oz)|
|Handle type / wood:||
Japanese / Walnut, Maple
Use & Care:
- Handwash in warm water and towel dry
- Use a sharpening stone (not a honing steel!) to sharpen your knife
- Do not cut frozen foods and meat bones
- Do not put the knife in a dishwasher
- Read our comprehensive guide on proper Maintenance of Kitchen Knives.
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