Sakai Jikko’s Betsuuchi Hongasumi line offers blades that are crafted from White Steel (WS), a high-carbon steel that often possess an HRC ranging anywhere from 62-63. WS is a very popular blade steel. In fact, it is the most common type of blade steel found in traditional/Eastern kitchens. Chefs & cooks alike enjoy using it because in spite of its hardness it is relatively easy to sharpen and takes on a very fine and sharp edge that proves to be an invaluable resource in the kitchen. One downfall of WS is that it rusts when it comes into contact with air and water, and therefore needs to be dried thoroughly before being stored. It is important to know that White Steel blades aren’t stainless and rust if not handled properly. Additionally, because these knives are “Hongasumi” knives, they are forged with more deliberation and care to remove impurities during the forging process, making them even more refined than “Kasumi” knives. The Betsuuchi Hongasumi knives sport a traditional-style, magnolia wood handle embedded with a buffalo horn bolster for balance.
Recommendation: The knives in this series are best for professional chefs and users who are proficient in knife sharpening and maintenance. These knives cannot be sharpened with a honing steel and require a whetstone. Additionally, because these knives are prone to chipping at the edge, they may require more than average maintenance and sharpening. However, that is solely based on how the knives are handled.