Shibata knives

brand koutetsu

Original Brand KOUTETSU

As a result of pursuing sharpness and ease of use, I came to a shape that looks like the Japanese ironclad Kotetsu.

Since the knives are shaped like iron plates, we carefully sharpen them one by one.

We make them in a range of sizes.


In my kitchen I was using a gyuto knife. It was a beautiful knife. But it was a little too curved for my liking. Didn't make enough contact with the food. So I switched to a straight-edged nakiri. Better for chopping vegetables. But when I was cutting meat, then I wanted to go back to my gyuto. Hmm, I thought. Somebody should make a new type of knife, one that falls between a gyuto and a nakiri. And then, as I am a knife maker, I thought that I should make it. So I did.

I gave it a slightly curved edge. Too-straight produces too much friction. Too-curved reduces contact with the food. This slight curve is my attempt at a happy medium.


I also gave it a sharp point. This is very nice for scoring vegetables, or squid, or chicken.

The spine of the knife has a very high mirror-polish. This maximizes friction between your fingers and the blade, for better control, comfort, and safety.

The sides of the knife have a rough finish, to minimize friction between the food and the blade. This is especially noticeable with foods that have a high water content. My knife's rough sides break up the water's surface tension, allowing the blade to slide through more easily.


Japan's first ironclad ship. Her name means, literally, "Ironclad." The Koutetsu had a very unusual bow. It looks like my knife.And the Koutetsu was the first in her class, and she used a pioneering, "cutting-edge" design - just like my knife.

The Koutetsu was formidable - just like my knife. And the Koutetsu was ironclad - somewhat like my knife. My knife is actually steel clad with steel. Inside I put SG-2 stainless powder steel. Outside, I have clad it with stainless steel sides. This 2-steel combination is easier to sharpen, and it keeps its edge better, and it resists damage better.