The Knifenerd Guide to Japanese Knives


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A good chef knife is the most important tool in any kitchen.

Professional chefs often describe their knives as an extension of their body. Considering that Japanese knives are world famous—not only for their good looks, but also their extreme sharpness—it’s no wonder so many chefs all over the world choose Japanese kitchen knives above all others.

Kevin Kent, the Knifenerd, takes us behind the scenes with a personal look into the lives, skills and artistry of the blacksmiths who make the world’s finest knives. Award winning photography by Visti Kjar transports the reader behind the scenes, into the rarely seen, dimly lit, sweaty, bustling, historic workshops of some of the worlds best blacksmiths. Feel the intense heat of the forge, smell the coal fire, hear the deafening blows of the hammer on red hot steel and see the sparks fly.

From the forging and sharpening to the choosing and collecting, Kevin Kent relays his extensive knowledge and passion on the subject of Japanese knives including…

  • telling stories about all of his favourite blacksmiths
  • explaining in plain language why Japanese knives and steel are just better
  • where to start on your journey into Japanese knives, including explanations of which shapes you need in your home
  • Accompanied by gorgeous photos by Visti Kjar, taken in the seldom-seen workshops of the best blacksmiths in Japan.
  • Unpopular opinions about Damascus steel.

Format: Hardcover
Dimensions: 320 pages, 8.25″ x 10.25″
Published:  Late October, 2018
Publisher: Long Ladder Media
ISBN: 978-1-9993906-0-0

About the Author – Kevin Kent

kevin_author_photo_600xWhen Kevin was seven years old, his uncle gave him a pocket knife and said, “Don’t tell your Mom.”
To this day, it’s been his secret and the start of his knife passion. While working in London, UK at the celebrated St. John Restaurant, Kevin bought a Japanese knife and found his calling. Back in Canada, Knifewear was born, as Kevin began selling Japanese kitchen knives from his backpack and bicycle. He now has five knife shops across Canada (with plans for more), opened a chain of stores called Kent of Inglewood (focusing on axes and straight razors), and produced an award winning documentary about Japanese blacksmiths called Springhammer as well as its sequel Springhammer 2: The Making of a Knife.
If you meet him in person, ask him to tell you his Lou Reed story.

About the Photographer – Visti Kjar

visti_author_photo_600xVisti Kjar was born in Penang, Malaysia, grew up in Western Canada and now makes Calgary, Alberta his home. Visti’s photographic inspiration arrived while flipping through his father’s photos and hearing stories of his travels to remote and exotic regions of the world.
In his early 20s, Visti got his feet wet (literally) and dabbled in underwater photography as a NAUI Dive Master. But he didn’t get serious about photography until he spent his first summer as a park archeologist in Yellowstone National Park.
A lover of landscapes of all types—urban, industrial, and natural—Visti endeavours to capture the unique aspects of this world. He is continuously seeking unusual experiences, while refining, evolving, and improving his view of the world through his camera.

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