Not-so-obscure Object of Desire: Shun Higo No Kami Steak Knife


The Shun Higo No Kami steak knife is a modern interpretation of an ancient classic.

When TTAK first started, Chris compared his explorations beyond the surface world of knives to “diving down rabbit holes”. In my piece on the Boker War Toad, I first began my exploration of friction folders, and since then I keep coming across examples of this class of knife that bear further mention.

My first exposure to friction folders was Chris’s excellent “Know your Knives” piece on the Higo No Kami. (or Higo Nokami, or simply Higo for our purposes here). This traditional Japanese folder features an extended tang which is grasped against the knife’s handle serving to hold the knife open. I just learned of this modern example by Shun, a personal steak knife.


The Shun Higo steak knife takes the style beyond its peasant roots. It features a VG10 blade, and a liner lock for additional blade security. Despite these modern touches, the Shun has the classic lines and look of a traditional Higo. This knife seems to hit the sweet spot between form and function. The knife comes with a wooden box and leather sleeve for carry and storage.

I can’t call this knife “Obscure” since it is available on Amazon for an attainable $100 or so, but I definitely would say it is something I desire. It is never something I can say I need, there are other cheaper blades that will cut a steak. The Shun Higo steak knife is an elegant tool, for a use by a connoisseur.


  1. Jon M. says:

    I love, love, love this knife and have the same feelings about it. I’ve nearly bought it I can’t tell you how many times but I always stray back towards practicality (meaning anything but a $100 friction folder). The original Higos are really neat and surprisingly affordable, but it’s neat to see a higher end take on the model.

    If you want to see my dream friction folder, check out American Kami’s take on it. there’s just no justification for it, but dammit I love ’em.

  2. Sam L. says:

    If I were of a mind to carry a personal steak knife, I think it would be a German KAT knife.

  3. Chase M. says:

    I have been very close to buying this knife many times. I ended up finding a beautiful, modern example by maker Hiroaki Ohta in san mai Damascus. Hiroaki Ohta Knives Overview:

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Not-so-obscure Object of Desire: Shun Higo No Kami Steak Knife

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