IN JAPAN, THE BLADE HAS LONG BEEN MORE THAN JUST A TOOL; THE WAY OF THE BLADE IS A WAY OF LIFE.
In Japanese, “Shun” (pronounced “shoon” and rhymes with “moon”) is the precise moment during the year when any particular food is at the peak of its perfection. Shun is when fruit is at its sweetest, when vegetables are perfectly ripe, perfectly fresh, and perfectly delicious. Shun is in harmony with the natural rhythms of the seasons. Shun Cutlery proudly takes its name from this Japanese culinary tradition of preparing and eating the very freshest food at the perfect “shun” moment. It is a tradition we live up to every day, making fine kitchen knives that are always at the peak of their perfection, too.
IN THE SPIRIT OF THE LEGENDARY SWORD SMITHS OF JAPAN
From the legendary samurai swords said to contain the soul of the warrior who wielded them to the handcrafted kitchen knives of today, the exquisite craftsmanship of Japanese blades is admired worldwide.
Since the 13th century, Seki City has been the heart of the Japanese cutlery industry. For more than 100 years, it has also been home to the Kai Corporation, the makers of Shun fine cutlery. Inspired by the blade-making traditions of ancient Japan, today’s highly skilled Shun artisans produce blades of unparalleled quality and beauty.
A WORK OF ART THAT TAKES MORE THAN 100 HANDCRAFTED STEPS TO COMPLETE
Incredibly sharp edges and unmatched aesthetics set Shun knives apart from every other kitchen knife on the market today. In the great tradition of Seki’s sword smiths, every knife is handmade by highly skilled specialists and requires at least 100 handcrafted steps to complete. Every day, the legacy of ancient sword smiths serves as inspiration to the artisans in the Kai factories. Kai’s 100-year-old tradition of blade-making excellence, combined with the newest technology and the most advanced materials, makes every Shun knife a functional work of art.
CUTLERY CARE AND HANDLING
One aspect of caring for your knives is maintaining the edge and, when needed, sharpening the blade. But it’s also important to be aware of how you’re using your knives on a daily basis.
The cutting surface you use makes a big difference in keeping your knives sharp. A good cutting board will help retain a sharp edge for substantially longer. Wood, such as hinoki, and polypropylene boards are excellent choices. Tile, ceramic, marble, granite, or any kind of glass cutting boards are poor choices and are very hard on your knives.
Shun Cutlery is designed to be used in a smooth, slicing motion—and never in a forceful, up-and-down “chopping” manner. The proper cutting motion is a "locomotive" motion, pushing the knife forward and down as you cut through the food, then pulling the knife up and back towards you (in order to position it for the next cut). This motion is also similar to cutting wood with a handsaw—forward and down, then back. The razor-sharp blade of your Shun makes this practically effortless.
When you first begin using a Shun, go slowly and enjoy the precision cutting ability of your new kitchen cutlery. As you gain experience, you will be able to work more quickly. No matter what your experience level, be careful and always pay attention to where your fingers are in relation to the knife.
CLEANING AND STORAGE
As with any lifetime investment, it’s important to take the best care possible in order to prolong the life of your knife. Shun recommends that you protect your investment by handwashing your blades with gentle dish soap. Don’t use soaps with citrus extracts or bleach; they can promote corrosion. Rinse and towel dry immediately. Let the knives air dry for a few minutes before returning them to storage. Never leave your knife sitting in a sink full of soapy water. It does metals no good to be submerged in water for prolonged periods of time, and it’s a danger to you when you reach in.
Micro-corrosion, which can result in tiny chips or missing pieces in your knife’s cutting edge, can occur because moisture is left on the cutting edge. Moisture weakens the stainless steel and promotes micro-corrosion. If moisture is left on the cutting edge repeatedly, even normal use in the kitchen can result in small chips in the weakened sections of the edge. To guard against this, wash your knife immediately after use and dry it very thoroughly with an absorbent cloth or towel. Please take extra care to safely dry the sharp cutting edge of your Shun, keeping your fingers away from the edge.
After you have washed and dried your knives, store them in a block, knife case, in-drawer tray, or sheath. We do not recommend storing the knives unsheathed in a drawer, as this can be a potential hazard to the blades as well as your fingers.