Gihei Hamono has been operational for over 80 years. It is currently run by 2nd generation Hosowaka-san and his son. They have been predominantly specialising in high end powder steels for many years now.
SHAPE: Santoku. Named after the three best things to do with this knife - slicing, dicing and mincing. It is the classic veg prep knife with both good breadth and width.
STEEL: ZDP189. This is a modern powder steels and as the name suggested is formed from mixture of powdered elements heated and pressed together. This allows for very precise recipes to be followed. The steels themselves have the ability to be hardened to above 65 on the Rockwell scale giving them excellent edge retention. This does come at a slight cost in that they can be slightly difficult to sharpen.
FINISH: Polished or Migaki.
HANDLE: Octagonal Keyaki or Zelkova wood with a buffalo horn ferrule.
LENGTH: 165mm in length.
MAKER: Gihei - Sanjo, Japan
BEST FOR: Top of the line knives in crazy steels.
SAUNDERS SAYS: "I waited two years for this and every moment was worth it. Everything they produce is phenomenal and we have quite the collection. I had the pleasure of visiting their forge in autumn 2019. The workshop is tiny and it’s mind blowing to think they produce this array from there."
These knives are hand-forged so there may be slight variations in measurements and finishes.