The Yoshimitsu Hamono Company was founded by five brothers who made a name for themselves due to their use of Tamahagne steel, which they smelt themselves in a classic Tatara from locally sourced iron sands. We were drawn to theses makers because of their use of the old techniques like Tamahagane and hand forged awase (cladding), much of which is now performed by the big steel mills before sending the clad steel to their customers.
Now only one of their nephews survive and he has continued the business. The Fugen White #1 line he makes for us is constructed with an inner core of Hitachi White #1 steel, which is clad in a soft iron. This outer layer is left with its carbon coating to help protect the knife from corrosion and provide a surface with better food release. This coating is known as kurouchi. Of course, as the knife is not stainless steel, it will require drying between uses.
This is a classic gyuto in terms of its proportions and basic profile. It comes in at just over the advertised length at 245mm and has a nice height of 53mm for extra hand clearance. There is a flat area from the heel to almost the halfway point on the edge. The tip is very finely crafted and is quite thin behind the edge. The knife comes with a simple oval ho wood handle and plastic ferrule.