The #4 6″ Santoku from the Michel Bras collection is an Asian chef’s knife designed for vegetables, meat, and fish. The versatile convex blade is maneuverable, promoting excellent blade control, and also works very well with smaller jobs such as chopping herbs and mincing garlic.
From the French Michelin star chef Michel Bras and the KAI Group—blade makers that make use of the technology and rich history of Seki, Japan—comes a beautiful range of precision utensils.
This series of 10 knives were created without compromise, resulting in products that stand out, not only for high quality and functionality but also for great aesthetic beauty. By finding the perfect balance between advanced technology and the craftsmanship of experienced artisans, Michel Bras knives achieve the perfect fusion of beauty and usefulness, aesthetics, and gastronomy. These knives are the ideal companion of all those with a true passion for cooking.
Each knife undergoes a total of 37 processes—some by hand—before they reach completion. The stunning yet sober matte-finished blade is composed of three stainless-steel layers: a hardened VG-10 core sandwiched between two layers of a more flexible stainless steel, making for better resistance and durability. Then, a titanium coating is added to enhance the antioxidation properties of the steel.
Next, the blade achieves its mate appearance through a method called shotblast in which very fine beads are blown against the blade at extremely high pressure. The results of this step rely on the precision of the artisan holding the blade during this process. To further show the exclusivity of the knives, each blade is etched with a unique serial number and a silhouette of the cistre, an alpine herb symbolic of Le Suquet, Bras’ restaurant.
The most difficult part of the process is the assembly of the black pakkawood handle and the metal end piece, they are matched repeatedly until they fit together exactly. The water-resistant handle is designed in the distinct traditional Japanese chestnut shape so that it sits comfortably and naturally in hand. The metal end cap, as well as adding stunning sophistication, is functional. Etched with a number between 1 and 10 corresponding to the knife type, it allows for the quick identification of each knife so that you know its function with only a glance.
The last step is the final sharpening of each blade to yield the cutting edge suited to each knife’s individual purpose. First, water polishing using a rotating whetstone, then the blade undergoes a leather polishing using a strip of cow hide on a rotating cylinder. This combination of techniques results in a blade of exceptional sharpness. Skilled technicians watch this process closely, ensuring that each blade is brought to a state of precision.
To safely store your Michel Bras blade, each knife comes in an elegant maple sheath with a magnetized interior to hold the knife snugly in place.