Okeya-san operates a small blacksmith shop with his son, following on his grandfatherís tradition of making the small Japanese blades called kogatanas (the traditional small multi-purpose utility knives adept at all kinds of cutting and whittling tasks). The Okeya team have expanded their line of blades into kitchen knives like gyutos, santokus, and other styles. The bunka featured here is a good example of this new range of utensils.
Bunka style knives are versatile and easy to use kitchen utensils. Their short length and tanto-style tip makes them really useful at cutting smaller ingredients and prepping intricate morsels and garnishes. The relatively tall blade height offers extra hand clearance and control.
Okeya fashions the blade from White Paper #2 carbon steel. It is a well-liked and highly touted alloy for use in a variety kitchen and sporting knives. Itís a reactive steel so care with cleaning and drying is needed to keep that under control. The Shirogami 2 steel takes a very good edge and holds it through long prep sessions. It is also an easy steel to sharpen. Given the level of fit and finish and the use of good materials this knife is a quite a bargain.
Many people are discovering the virtues of the versatile bunka. The shorter length and taller profile are slightly different from the usual chef knife or gyuto. The Okeya White #2 bunka is a great opportunity to try something new while keeping the bank balance in check!
Location: Miki, Japan
Construction: Hammer Forged, San Mai
Edge Steel: White #2
Cladding: Soft Iron
Finish: Hairline/Sand Blast
Edge Length: 185mm
5Great knife, January 14, 2020
Posted By: Friz
This is my first bunka knife. Out of the box itís pretty sharp. After using a whetstone it is now razor sharp! It doesnít have the Japanese characters like the one shown in the photo, other than that it cuts very nicely. This is now my main knife in the kitchen.
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