The Matsubara White #1 Cleaver is a fine example of a traditional Chinese cleaver
. It is hand-forged by 4th generation master bladesmith Katsuto Tanaka who was born in Matsubara in 1962. He is the fourth president of Tanaka Kama Kogyo, Blacksmith.
Tanaka-san hammer forges his blades from Hitachi White Paper #1, a pure carbon alloy renowned for its hardness and ability to take and hold a sharp edge. This knife is hardened to 63-64 HRC, which is at the upper end of hardness for this steel. The core (hagane) is then covered in a layer of softer carbon steel to add strength and protection. This layer is finished in a kurouchi style of blacksmith carbon which further protects the blade and aids in food release. It also endows the knife with a very nice rustic appearance. A lovely hand-engraved motif further adds to the fine aesthetic of the knife.
The Matsubara White #1 tall nakiri
is a tweener knife between a nakiri and a cleaver and they're fun for chopping a wide variety of foods. The double-sided grind features a very well-finished symmetrical edge bevel. This is a wonderful example of a classic cleaver. A knife should occupy a spot on the shopping list of anyone seeking a medium-sized and modestly priced kitchen knife capable of handling most cutting tasks.
Blacksmith: Tanaka San
Location: Nagasaki Japan
Construction: Hammer Forged, San Mai
Cladding: Soft Iron
Weight: 7.9oz/ 224g
Blade Length: 175 mm
Overall Length: 320 mm
Spine Thickness at Heel: 2.4mm
Blade Height at Heel: 78mm
Handle Type: Rosewood Octagonal
Please note, Mr. Tanaka puts a notch in the tang and this is done on purpose and is not an installation mistake.