Our founder, Hisaka Tanaka, was mobilized by schoolmen to work in an iron processing plant during World War II.
Just as the war had passed and peace had been restored, tragedy struck. Hisaka lost his father in 1945 and his mother in 1948 to illness.
He wanted to send his younger brother Umewaka (the current manager), who was 18 years old at the time, to college. Through a relative's introduction, he worked at the Kawanishi Kitchen Store in Doguya-suji. Still, he held one thought in his heart.
The Teikoku Sharyo Works, where Hisaka Tanaka was employed, in 1912, during the era of the advancing Umebachi Ironworks. Photo courtesy of Makoto Ikuta of Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Real Estate Co., Ltd.
Making Knives with Our Ironworking Skills
Visiting Sakai to learn how to make knives from a master craftsman.
Hisaka Tanaka (center) introducing the knife-making process (1987).
Hisaka Tanaka is second from the left in the front row (1951).
It was there that Hisaka learned about craftsmanship, which was unbelievable even at that time.
He lowers the hammer in front of the 1,100-degree flame to discern the slightest difference in color and temper it to sharpen with great attention to detail. Hisoka learned to make knives with skill and soul, and his desire to spread this to the world grows stronger every day.
1953. With the permission of his business mentor Tsurukichi Kawanishi, Hisaka Tanaka opened his long-sought kitchen knife shop in Doguya-suji.
Our shop is one of the few places where chefs from all over Japan can come and pick up over 2,000 different kinds of knives in response to various requests. The craftsmanship and passion of Hisaka Tanaka, our founder, is still alive and well today.
Japanese Chef Knives by Sakai Ichimonji Mitsuhide
As we see the widespread of Japanese cuisine throughout the world, we can also find many different food cultures within Japan. Amidst this diversified food scene, there is a kitchenware street fondly called "the Kitchen of Japan" in Osaka's food capital. It is here within the Doguyashiji Lane that we have been situated for the past century.
Backed by the skills of the craftsmen who have been continuously improving their techniques for more than 600 years, the Sakai Ichimonji Mitsuhide brand has been trusted by top culinary masters for generations. Furthermore, we continue to evolve every aspect of our craft and customer service.
Through frequent interactions to respond to chefs' needs and building trusting relationships with master knife craftsmen, we now have grown to become the world's only knife store with more than 2,000 products.
If you visit Japan, we hope you will drop by our long-established shop where the spirits of true culinary masters and craftsmen meet. We look forward to providing you with our premium knives designed to last a lifetime.
Our brand, "Sakai Ichimonji Mitsuhide," also our registered trademark, offers a lineup of premium Japanese chef knives forged by master craftsmen in Osaka's Sakai district. The history of these techniques stretches back 600 years and continues to evolve.
It is not uncommon to find chefs who use the same knives for more than a decade. To make this possible, maintenance and sharpening are indispensable. We strive to offer our services to maintain our customers' blades when their length has shortened by half through years of use and sharpening.
Upon succeeding in the cooking utensil section of a former tool shop, we started our business in Osaka in 1916. Ever since, we have been expanding the variety of merchandise in tandem with advancements in kitchen appliances, while bearing in mind at all times to satisfy our customers' needs.
We are proud and sincerely grateful to have accumulated such an abundance of expertise to apply to various areas of the cutlery industry. We look forward to serving you with our premium Japanese chef knives, accessories, and after-care.
Hiroyuki Tanaka President, Ichimonji Chuki Co., Ltd. Board Member, Osaka Food & Beverage Equipment Cooperative Board Member, Sennichimae Dogusujiya Shopping District Promotion Association Lecturer, Tsuji Culinary Institute
Hiroyuki Tanaka President
|Company Name||Ichimonji Chuki, Ltd.|
|Headquarter Office||3rd to 5th floor, Ichimonji Chuki Head Office Building, 14-8 Namba-Sennichimae, Chuo-ku, Osaka 542-0075, Japan
Retail Store B1 to 2nd floor of the above
|Establishment||August 1952 (current location)|
|Incorporation||January 1975 Capital 40 million yen|
|Representative Director||Hiroyuki Tanaka|