December 10, 2015

Umami Tool Watch: The Mighty MAC Yanagi Knife

by Umami Mart Staff

If you’ve ever tried to prepare sashimi or sushi, you’ve probably learned pretty quickly that having the right knife makes a huge difference. Even the freshest fish doesn’t make great sashimi if it’s sliced poorly – you can easily ruin the texture, the look, and the taste of your most important ingredient with the wrong […]

June 4, 2015

Umami Tool Watch: Microdent Knives

by Kayoko Akabori

We are total gadget heads here at Umami Mart. Johnny always scoffs when I bring home a new kitchen toy, or cocktail tool — we even tried to implement a rule of getting rid of something in order to bring in a new product. But that didn’t last long. When I brought home these two […]

January 24, 2011

ReCPY: The Yamahomo Knife from Aritsugu Shop (Kyoto)

by Moto Yamamoto

Since seeing Michael Romano’s collections of Japanese knives (many were around $1,000, but some were custom made and cost him $5,000, which he displays, never uses) at one of the programs I organized last fall, I determined the need to graduate from my Global knives. I mean, I like them– they are basic and cuts […]

October 29, 2010

Upcoming Event PSA: Japanese Knives are THE BEST (NYC)

by Moto Yamamoto

Chef Says: Japanese Knives are the BEST Tuesday, November 9,  6:30 pm Japan Society NYC We all know Japanese knives rock. Once you start using them, you will never go back to Henckels, Wüshtoff, or even Global, a fellow Japanese maker of mass-produced knives. Do you know why? Because we used to kill humans with the same […]

June 10, 2010

Umamiventure #25: Severely Stoned in Berkeley

by Yoko Kumano

The 25th Umamiventure took place at Hida Tool and Hardware in Berkeley. After writing about sharpening Carbon and Stainless Steel knives on Umamimart and receiving a lot of questions, I thought it would be good to take these questions to the source. Chika, the knifemaster, at Hida Tool and Hardware. Chika has been working with […]

May 17, 2010

Heads Up – Umamiventure #25: Knife Sharpening Workshop at Hida Tool & Hardware (Berkeley)

by Yoko Kumano

I owe much of my knife sharpening knowledge to the folks at Hida Tool & Hardware in Berkeley. So when a few people emailed me about wanting to learn more about sharpening knives, and/or purchasing a hocho, I thought it would make sense for me to bring those people with me to Hida Tool & […]

April 15, 2010

Japanify: Sharpening Carbon and Stainless Steel Knives

by Yoko Kumano

After seeing how well the chefs (at Konohana, the sousaku-ryori restaurant I worked at last year in Tokyo) and the housewives in Japan take care of their hōchōs (Japanese cutlery), one of the first things I did when I moved back to the U.S. was to get a knife sharpener for my carbon-steel hōchō I […]

October 9, 2009


by Kayoko Akabori

My pops got a new fish slicer-dicer for work. Check it. He got it engraved with the family name, or as fancy Upper Eastsiders would say, “monogrammed.” AKABORI HOLLER! Kinda awesome (Mifune/YOJIMBO) slash creepy (Mishima/SEPPUKU).

May 20, 2008

Jewel Box From My Pops

by Kayoko Akabori

For my birthday, Kuni, my dad, handed me this box. A new diamond necklace, perhaps? Um, there is no way in hell that would EVER happen- I’m not even sure my mom has gotten anything of that sort since the wedding ring, uh, THIRTY YEARS AGO. So what was inside? Something better than diamonds, for […]