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In the Wild: Shigeki Tanaka R2 Santoku

Out of the nine knives I have at home, seven of them are carbon steel and the rest are stainless. I've always been partial to carbon steel but the Tanaka Santoku I took home to play around with has made me think twice about stainless blades.

Like a hot knife through butter.

When I took this knife home, Eugene had already been using it for a few months and it was still razor sharp. I decided not to touch it up just to see what the edge retention was like. I can safely say that after three months of use on my end, it still is. Needless to say I'm impressed.

It's quickly become the only knife sitting on my cutting board; it's the only one I use and I use it for just about everything. From opening packages, taking the top off bags, to slicing steaks and halving cabbage or dicing some veggies, it's a pleasure to handle at any opportunity.

One of my favourite things about this knife, beyond it's beautiful aesthetic and how nicely the edge is holding up, is how it rocks compared to other Santoku knives I own. It has a slightly more curved profile, which offers a smoother rock more akin to a Gyuto than my Masakage Yuki Santoku, for example. Just looking at the knife I'm sure it's easy to spot but the spine shows this off with its unique curvature. Don't let that discount the fact that this knife is still a Santoku through and through.

A close up look at the stunning pattern and detail on Tanaka's Santoku.

I've found it really funny how the most expensive knife I've had the privilege of using is now my counter knife - usually it's the other way around. Maybe I've been over protective or maybe I should have just been giving stainless steels more attention than I have.

Either way, Shigeki Tanaka makes one hell of a knife.

Thanks for reading, MK

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