Your Best Soy: Prizes & The Kikuichi Forging Tour

August  6, 2012

We're doing something a little different with our Your Best Soy recipe contest. Thanks to our friends at the Japanese Culinary Arts Network, we're thrilled to be offering our contest winner a hand-forged Japanese knife from Kikuichi Cutlery.

This hand-forged Yanagi Sushi knife has a camphor wood handle, an 8-inch blade, and a retail value of $226!

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Kikuichi knives are hand-forged -- and have been for over 700 years! With a forging process derived from the same techniques used to make samurai swords -- yes, you'll be chopping onions with a knife from a company that used to arm warriors -- they're as much a piece of history as they are a razor-sharp kitchen tool. Here are Kikuichi forging masters Yuso Tani, Akimasa Oe, and Tadashi Enami at work -- between them, they have nearly 100 years of experience crafting knives, and each is the second generation in their families to do so:

Interested in seeing the forging masters at work? From August 12-18, they'll be doing an unprecedented press tour across the US, with forging and engraving demonstrations in 9 US cities. The three craftsmen will illustrate the art of forging as well as knife finishing -- at each event the public will be able to see this craft in action and learn about the entire process, from raw iron to finished blade. One of the craftsmen, Akimasa Oe, will be on hand to engrave knives for customers at each stop along the tour.

Check out the tour below to find a location near you, and don't forget to enter the Your Best Soy contest!

Sunday, August 12
• 11:00-3:00 PM: Forging at Sign of The Bear, 435 1st St. West, Sonoma, CA
• 4:30-6:30 PM: Engraving at Sonoma Cutlery, 130 Kentucky St. Petaluma CA

Monday, August 13
• 11:00-4:00 PM: Forging at Perfect Edge, 1640 Palm Ave. San Mateo, CA
• 5:00-7:00 PM: Engraving at Town Cutler 1005 Bush St, Aan Francisco, CA

Tuesday, August 14
• 3:00-7:00 PM: Forging at Kitchen Window, 3001 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN

Wednesday, August 15
• 3:00-7:00 PM: Forging at Cook’s Warehouse, 180 W. Ponce De Leon, Decatur, GA

Thursday, August 16
• 10:00-2:00 PM: Forging at Cook’s Warehouse, 1544 Piedmont Road Atlanta, GA

Friday, August 17
• 10:00-12:00 PM: Forging at The James Beard House sponsored by Bowery Kitchen Supply, 167 W 12th St., New York, NY (Professionals only by RSVP)
• 3:30-7:30 PM: Forging at Warren Kitchen & Cutlery, 6934 Rt 9 Rhinebeck, NY

Saturday, August 18
• 11:00-3:00 PM: Forging at Smorgasburg sponsored by The Brooklyn Kitchen, 27 N. 6th St., Brooklyn, NY
• 4:00-7:00 PM: Press Reception at The Brooklyn Kitchen, 100 Frost St., Brooklyn NY (Press only by RSVP)

Take a peek at their 16-step forging and engraving process in these photos -- centuries of craft in two simple slides!

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