View Full Version : Sneak Peak of OLD OLD Masamoto memories and history!

09-14-2012, 02:48 PM
Before I throw these up on our Korin website, I wanted to give KKF a sneak peak at these awesome picture of the Masamoto Sohonten Company.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8301/7986108567_18686a25d6.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986108567/)

Minosuke Matsuzawa, the founder of the Masamoto Sohonten Company, started making knives in 1872. It was his dream that his family would come to be "remembered as knife craftsmen throughout the generations." Now, five generations later, Matsuzawa's vision has been realized and professionally crafted Masamoto knives have become some of the best in the world and are widely regarded as the finest knives made for use by professional chefs.

Awesome information in the Korin catalog that I never really noticed until recently:

At the tender age of 16, Minosuke Matsuzawa left his hometown of Tokyo for Sakai to stufy knife crafting. Sakai was then considered the natural place for a young knife craftsman to go to study his craft. During his apprenticeship, Matsuzawa identified the features in Inari clay, found only in Kansai, that made it the ultimate material used during the tempering process of knife forging. He discovered that a similar type of clay could also be found in Kanto (Tokyo).

He was so excited by his discovery and anxious to prove that superior knives could also be created in his own region, that he deserted his craft master in the middle of training and rushed back to Tokyo, surviving the entire way on okara (soy byproduct of tofu making). It was the only food he could get the tofu-makers to give him for free. Company rumor has it that every president of the Masamoto Sohonten since has been strangely fond of okra.

Matsuzawa's most prized knife design was the takobiki, an original kanto-style sashimi knife. At first, many sushi chefs in the Kanto region used these knives, But as time passed, chefs everywhere also began using the Kanto-style yanagi. Nowadays, most of Masamoto's customers are professional chefs, and the company has a long standing reputation on premier knife manufacturer that the sixth current president, Masahiro Hirano maintains to this day.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8040/7986124136_780e6a48c0_c.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986124136/)

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8304/7986118780_5657ac5e84_c.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986118780/)
Old picture of the store's location

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8034/7986111123_fd5c77b981_c.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986111123/)
Masamoto store before

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8451/7986120878_9db9efe956_c.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986120878/)

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8030/7986123260_baba69911b_c.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/68766473@N04/7986123260/)
Masamoto store today! It has a nice view of the Sky Tree. :)

I asked the Masamoto company for fun historical information, but apparently they had a huge fire that burned and destroyed all of their records. What is shown and mentioned here is a little part of history that still remains.

Thank you for reading and for all of your amazing support!

09-14-2012, 03:00 PM
Neat! Thanks for sharing...history was my minor in college, primarily studied Ancient Rome/Greece, but also took several classes on Japan (starting from before Meiji Restoration and going up to late 19th century). I really enjoy the historical items that get posted.

09-14-2012, 03:03 PM
Thank you Mari for sharing! I love these historical posts... It kind of makes me appreciate my yanagi enven more! Hahaha!

Please keep them comming!:doublethumbsup:


Cutty Sharp
09-14-2012, 03:14 PM
Masamoto by Sky Tree? I didn't know!

09-15-2012, 10:28 PM
Thank you for sharing. Now.....will there be a quiz at the Masamoto event on the 6th?

09-15-2012, 11:27 PM
Thanks for sharing!

09-17-2012, 03:44 PM
Thanks for reading everyone! :)

More to come soon!

09-21-2012, 12:56 AM
I cleaned up the photos a little, not much better-Thanks for posting them!

09-21-2012, 09:15 AM
I cleaned up the photos a little, not much better-Thanks for posting them!

Oh! Wow! Thanks so much!! :D