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Kisuke Manaka

Kisuke Manaka, the fifth-generation artisan at Manaka Hamono Tanrenjo, a renowned workshop established in 1872 in Kasukabe, Saitama Prefecture, Japan, didn't inherit the family business but rather married into it. Despite not receiving direct tutelage from his father-in-law, the fourth-generation Manaka, who primarily managed the workshop as a retailer, Kisuke pursued his path as a professional blacksmith. Fortunately, his grandfather-in-law, the third-generation Manaka, had left behind a wealth of tools, equipment, and instructional materials on blacksmithing. Through self-teaching and guidance from master Tsukasa Hinoura, Kisuke honed his craft and expertise.

Today Kisuke-san forges all of his own steel and specialises in the Warikomi style of steel lamination, sometimes referred to as "taco style", where the cladding material is split open and the core steel is pressed into the "taco" cladding shell and forge welded closed. This is similar to the more common method of lamination like SanMai where the cladding is stacked on either side of the core steel. However, Warikomi, has some benefits in terms of durability. Manaka Hamono knives feature beautiful and unique styling and exceptional fit and finish, with every step being completed in-house.