There is something quite intriguing about the shape of a bunka
. The combination of the reverse tanto-style tip and short, tall blade lend the knife a very purposeful look. These knives are gaining in popularity recently due to their do-it-all abilities. They are adept at cutting, slicing, and chopping, while the tip affords them the ability to take on smaller ingredients and get into tight spaces. They are a good choice for making garnishes and undertaking detail work of all kinds.
Yoshimi Kato apprenticed under his father, Hiroshi Kato, for many years before recently taking the reins of the business. He has continued to make knives for several leading brands including Masakage and Kanehiro.
This line is a new addition to his canon and we are very impressed with their quality of grinds, fit and finish, and overall aesthetic appeal. They are made from the ever popular stainless steel called VG-10, which is known for its great edge taking and holding characteristics.
VG-10 is a stainless steel with a high carbon content of 1%. Trace elements include chromium, molybdenum, vanadium, cobalt, and manganese. The steel was first created by the Takefu Special Steel Company and has now become one of the most popular stainless steels for use in kitchen cutlery. The inner core of VG-10 has an outer layer of a damascus stainless steel applied in the san-mai fashion. The inner core is revealed under the damascus which then transforms to a great-looking nashiji (pear skin) finish. It is coupled to a very good-looking rosewood octagonal handle with a pakka wood ferrule.
Blacksmith: Yoshimi Kato
Location: Echizen Japan
Factory: Takefu Village
Edge Steel: VG10
Cladding: Stainless Damascus
Edge: Even 50/50
Weight: 2.6 ounces
Blade Length: 132 mm
Total Length: 260 mm
Spine Thickness at Base: 2.3 mm
Blade Height: 33.4 mm