Santoku knives are really great all-around kitchen blades. They have a deft feel and tall blades which endow the knives with a great deal of versatility in their cutting capabilities. Santoku translates to “three virtues” and the acts of slicing, chopping, and dicing are tackled with aplomb by this classic design. Many Western chefs and home cooks look to the santoku as their go-to blade for most cutting tasks. They have become a very popular alternative to the classic Western chef knife or small gyuto.
The Takamura Chromax Santoku is a very sweet knife. It is made from Chromax steel, which is a semi stainless alloy often compared to R2. It has a very solid and tough feel, as opposed to a slightly more dainty feel of R2.
Chromax is composed of 5% chromium, 1% carbon, 0.9% manganese, 1.2% molybdenum and 0.5% vanadium. It is more resistant to corrosion than standard carbon steel. It is also harder and exhibits better edge retention compared to standard stain-resistant steel. Chromax steel manifests the positive characteristics of both carbon and stain-resistant steel.
These knives have a very attractive hammered finish and excellent grinds. The tsuchime hammered pattern was actually first developed and patented by Takamura Cutlery 50 years ago. Since the expiration of the patent, it is now used by many knife makers. This is the same blade as the other Takamura Chromax Santoku except with a nicer bolstered handle made of light brown oak colored wood.
Weight: 5 ounces
Blade Length: 170 mm
Spine Thickness at Base: 1.5 mm
Blade Height: 48 mm
Cladding: Stainless Hammered
5High performance at a modest price point. A great find!, December 9, 2019
Posted By: Austin Moody
Very nice little knife. I've now bought several as gifts for clients. I'm a 6-year custom knife-maker who doesn't have enough time to make knives as gifts, and these knives perform like my own. In my opinion these knives offer a tremendous value in terms of price:performance. They are easily maintained with a quick touch-up on a ceramic honing rod, too.
5Excellent edge retention and food release, July 23, 2019
Posted By: Stephen Sedmak - verified customer
I'm really impressed with this Chromax Santoku compared to the other Japanese-style kitchen knives I own, including MAC, Tojiro DP, Fujiwara FKM, and even Takamura R2. The Chromax hammered finish exceeded my expectations with dramatically improved food release when cutting starchy vegetables compared to my flat-surfaced Santoku knives - butternut squash sticks to them like glue, but brushes right off the hammered finish on the Chromax. True, butternut squash doesn't simply fall away, but only needs a light touch to release from the blade, which is still a vast improvement over a flat polished metal surface. Out of the box-sharpness measured 80 on my PT50B, which is REALLY sharp, and after cutting 3/8" sisal rope 50 times on a wooden cutting board, it measured 160, which is still legitimately razor-sharp. No chipping or edge rolling. Stropping with polish-loaded denim brought it right back to 80 sharpness. This is with the factory edge! For comparison, a measurement of 300 is considered to be typical "working sharpness"; my Tojiro DP's VG-10 factory edge measured 115 fresh-stropped and 235 after 50 rope cuts, and Fujiwara FKM's AUS-8 factory edge measured 140 and 285, respectively. Takamura Chromax was almost as sharp after heavy use/abuse as Fujiwara FKM AUS-8 is fresh out of the box! And with a quick stropping, it's back to being a laser-cutter. While I'm curious if I can do better than the factory edge, at this rate it's going to be a long time before I feel the need to even try. Compared to Takamura R2, cutting ability is almost as good, but the Chromax blade is MUCH tougher - as one would expect from the modified tool steel used in Chromax. In my book, Takamura Chromax's toughness and hammered finish more than make up for the tiny edge that Takamura R2 has in cutting ability. Regarding corrosion, after a couple weeks of daily use, a faint patina is forming on the edge with diligent washing and towel-drying of the blade immediately after use every time. The patina doesn't seem to have affected cutting ability. If I let it sit after use without washing and drying, the edge might rust and need re-sharpening. Finally, the handle is very comfortable to use, and doesn't hot spot in a pinch grip, whereas I needed to use sandpaper on my Tojiro DP knives. All-in-all, the Takamura Chromax Santoku is a wonderfully-designed and manufactured kitchen knife, so long as you take proper care of it.
Posted By: Mariam - verified customer 1 people found this review helpful
Bought this knife as a present for my partner who wanted to get a first Japanese knife. He was very pleased, it looks good and is very sharp. He is left handed but found the knife comfortable to use. It was very easy to order on the website and delievered quickly here in Canada. Will definitely order more knives from chefknivestogo.com
5Good looks and performance at a great price!, November 29, 2018
Posted By: BobZ 1 people found this review helpful
Laser performance in a Santoku! This knife has great fit and finish and will probably be the sharpest knife you ever get out of a box. Thin tip and thin behind the edge, it just glides through food. I like it so much i just bought the big brother gyuto.
Posted By: Collin Conner - verified customer 1 people found this review helpful
The chromax santoku performs beautifully, and it is a perfect choice for someone with smaller hands. I got it for my wife since see finds my 10.5” gyuto unwieldy. I have noticed that the high carbon edge picks up rust splotches very easily if you cut something acidic and leave it out or don’t dry right away after washing.
Posted By: HBunny - verified customer 2 people found this review helpful
I am a chef in a medium volume restaurant and use this knife for prep (not as a line knife). Its performance is incredible. Looking at the prepped ingredients, one can tell this knife cut them. The cut faces of foods are smooth as silk. The knife puts no stress on the ingredients as it glides through. Micro-sized mincing is easily achieved. A quick hone after each prep job has kept the blade impressively sharp for two weeks so far. The very edge of the blade, the core steel, is developing a gorgeous patina. Keep it dry. The design encourages proper blade-pinch grip. It's very nimble and fun to use.The most impressive part is how impossibly thin the blade stays behind the cutting edge (until the textured portion).This knife feels great, looks great, and performs far beyond expectation.
Posted By: Edward Roth - verified customer 2 people found this review helpful
Not much has changed since my first review. The knife is a pleasure to use. The handle is quite comfortable with very good blade height and I find it perfectly balanced for a pinch grip. Plus it's very good looking. And yup, it's a sharp one.
Posted By: Edward Roth - verified customer 3 people found this review helpful
I was skeptical of the comments from the other reviewers about the sharpness of this knife, even Steve's remarks. Have you ever used a fine straight razor? This santoku OWNS the word sharp.You ever use a scalpel? Yeah, it's all that. At 64-65 rockwell it should also hold that edge and be fair on the stones to sharpen. I just used it to dissect a fresh pumpkin...butter mean anything to you? Onions? It smiles with joy because onions offer no resistance at all. Meat? Cuts like surgery...Any questions? This knife is light, laser, deft and beauty...worth more than the cost and a dream to use. You want value on one super all-round knife, you get this one while it's in stock. My only gripe...I really like a wa type handle but still 5 stars.
Posted By: Cody Penton - verified customer 3 people found this review helpful
Like previous reviewers have stated, you can shave with this thing OOTB. Screaming sharp. I just got it so I can't say how well the edge holds but this is by far the sharpest OOTB knife I've ever used.
5The only santoku you'll need to know about, August 13, 2016
Posted By: Leo - verified customer 3 people found this review helpful
Man the edge out of the box on my knife was a 9.5/10 just because I've never met a 10. handle is super comfortable, patina takes tons of onions, garlic or any acid material to form, since this is a semi stainless steel. Edge outperforms any I ve tried, aesthetics on this hammered finish is beautiful, lightweight with a nice balance to it. Extremely thin behind the edge. But the best of all is the sharpening characteristics; it feels like a white #1 on the stones but performs as a Aogami super on the board. A must have, don't think about it. BUY IT.
Posted By: Kendall Phillips - verified customer 2 people found this review helpful
Again I say this knife is beautiful but if you cut anything acid you need to wash it off. I had to run around and plate a party, came back a half hour later and my knife was getting spotty from the strawberries I cut. I normally rinse all my knives quickly out of habit but I didn't realize it was that sensitive because I cut 3 cases of pears the other day and it was fine but I was wiping it down frequently. I don't care about reactive blades and I still wouldn't trade this knife for anything it's such a good little tool.
5Amazing knife and razor sharp out of the box, May 10, 2016
Posted By: Kendall Phillips - verified customer 2 people found this review helpful
Om gosh. I actually got the video knife, haven't even touched it up and it's amazing. It's a short knife but it's so sharp I've used it for ridiculous kitchen tasks that I would normally use a longer knife for. I cut the tops and bottoms off 260 pears, diced cases of vegetables and it just keeps on going. And I love the handle its fits nice in a smaller hand and it's beautiful. Worth every penny. Wish I had it in an 8" but I wouldn't trade it for anything.
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