Know the Craftsman

【Craftsman Series – Blade Sharpener Edition】 TAKADA no HAMONO in Sakai

Takada no Hamono

Blade Sharpener – Mr. Mitsuaki Takada (Sakai City, Osaka)

After gaining experience at the Ashi-Hamono, also located in the Sakai district, he became independent, renovating an old, vacant traditional house by himself to open his own workshop.

In Sakai, Osaka, the process of knife making is divided among different professionals. This system of division of labor allows professionals from various fields to collaborate in creating a single masterpiece. Among them, Mr. Takada, who I will introduce today, stands out as a craftsman responsible for blade sharpening. He has been delivering knives around the world, noted for their combination of beauty and sharpness.


2-3-11 Higashi Shimmeicho, Sakai Ward, Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture

Collection of Works


This is a representative work of Takada no Hamono and has a unique finish that is one of a kind in the world.

As the name suggests, the finish is reminiscent of ink wash paintings, resulting in a truly original work that hasn’t been seen before.

The production process involves numerous steps and an attention to detail, which limits the production to only a few pieces per day.

Compared to the initial works, the current (as of 2022) finish has a stronger contrast between the ink wash and mirrored surfaces, enhancing their shine.

The changes over time reflect the persistent passion for knife-making, and the ongoing trial and error that is undertaken daily. It’s clear to see how the artisan’s dedication to their craft is reflected in their work.


This knife is adorned with a hammer pattern resembling flower petals.

Although the design is simple, it has a single point of attraction that draws the eye, resulting in a well-balanced piece.

This knife is also particularly popular among overseas fans.


The knife is engraved with a fireworks pattern, a charming design that evokes the feeling of Japanese summers.

Although a knife is essentially just a tool, adding this kind of playful element can brighten your mood every time you use it, and it’s guaranteed to make your daily cooking even more enjoyable.

Regarding the fireworks engraving, it is said that he initially carved the metal himself to create it.


The term “suminagashi” refers to a pattern made from layers of metal.

Also known as Damascus, it is a popular design both domestically and internationally.

Even if you search the world, no two patterns are the same, and the charm lies in the unique taste of each knife.

Takada’s suminagashi, combined with the ink finish, creates an even more fantastical design, resulting in a work of art that absolutely cannot be replicated by others.


“Honyaki” refers to a knife made from a single piece of steel, which is among the most valuable of all knives.

Because it requires advanced skills to produce, it is said that there are only a handful of blacksmiths in Japan who can make honyaki knives.

As they are made from solid material, they take longer to sharpen compared to composite knives. Moreover, they are extremely delicate, requiring even more careful handling when sharpening. There are only a limited number of sharpeners like Mr. Takada who can beautifully finish a honyaki knife, making these knives generally highly valuable due to their rarity.


Not only does he focus on the knives themselves, but Mr. Takada also places a great emphasis on the packaging box, going so far as to seek out craftsmen in Kyoto for this purpose.

From the texture of the materials, to the way the knives are wrapped, and even to the design of the thank-you notes, you can feel the attention to detail. Mr. Takada’s personality and his passion for his work are conveyed through the entire product.

Memories with Mr. Takada

During the early days of Mr. Takada’s business, I had the privilege of visiting his workshop in Sakai Ward and receiving special guidance on knife sharpening.

※Please note that they do not offer general sharpening workshops for the public.

From 9 in the morning until noon, Mr. Takada patiently guided me through the various processes of knife making, starting from shaping the blade with a grindstone, buffing, and handle fitting.

Among the multiple processes, the most challenging part for me was mastering the angle at which the knife should be placed against the grindstone. Compared to regular hand sharpening, the speed at which the knife was being ground on the grindstone was significantly faster, requiring careful attention to avoid over-grinding. I actually ended up grinding too much of the soft iron part, resulting in the edge of the blade protruding. It was my first experience using a grindstone, and I was filled with excitement and nervousness throughout the dream-like time.

Although I only experienced the fundamental aspects, I was able to personally feel the difficulty of a craftsman’s work. Despite being busy at the time, Mr. Takada generously dedicated his valuable time, and it was truly an amazing experience.

I not only had the opportunity to study the work of a knife sharpener in an enjoyable way, but also learned about Mr. Takada’s dedication to his knives. It greatly contributed to my growth as a staff member of a specialized knife store.

The knives I purchased from his workshop are still in active use after several years.

Initially, I bought them for myself, but they ended up becoming my mother’s favorite. When I mentioned, “I gave you a good knife before, remember?” she replied, “Because Mr. Takada’s knives are the most user-friendly.” Since my mother claimed it as her own, I had to purchase another knife for myself.

Among the 30 to 40 knives I own, it is my favorite among the chef’s knives I have used.

These knives are meticulously sharpened to be extremely thin and have a gentle clamshell-shaped edge, allowing for excellent food penetration and an addictive sharpness once you use them. In particular, the difference between these knives and others becomes evident when slicing cabbage or onions, for example.

With its artistic charm and remarkable cutting performance, this dream-like and outstanding knife comes highly recommended for those who are interested.

I have personally been a customer since the early days of Mr. Takada’s business, and his knives continue to grow in allure day by day. He is truly a craftsman who always excites his fans.

Currently, there is a global frenzy for Takada no Hamono, and even when new stock arrives, it quickly sells out due to its popularity.

Due to the time-consuming production process, they are unable to keep up with the demand, and many fans eagerly await Mr. Takada’s creations.

In Japan, Tsubaya Hocho-ten in Kappabashi is the authorized retailer, so I highly recommend visiting if you’re interested.

You can visit their online shop here.

※Please note that items may be out of stock, so if you are traveling from afar, it is recommended to check the availability in advance.


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