Curved handle with a slim, opposingly curved blade which tapers towards the tip. For optimum sideways cutting. Finely honed and flexible. Made of stainless steel with a hardness of ca. 59 HRC. Blade length approx. 130 mm.
In practically every culture knives are ultimately among the most important kitchen tools upon which the most varied demands are placed, according to the regional circumstances. They therefore offer interesting insights into culinary culture. For a good 30 years I have, during the course of my career, taken great pleasure
in concerning myself with knives, their history, background, shapes, regional variants and – primarily – function.
The group of knives that exhibits the greatest number of variants is fish knives. These are determined by the great variety of fish found in our seas, the differing appreciation of fish in a wide range of countries and the specific cuisines found there, and the various methods of preparing the fish for cooking.
During my career I have been able to observe and study preparation methods in European and – even more so – Japanese fish cuisine. Japan, as a result of its great variety of fish, shellfish and crustaceans in its seas, has offered a highly informative area of study for me. Nowhere else does such a varied range of knife types exist that are tailored to specific species of fish and their optimum portioning. I have had the opportunity to observe the portioning of fish, both during my career in Japan – among others very often at the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo – and at different restaurant kitchens in Europe and Japan. The processing of fish by the fish trade is a separate additional area.
Although we have been importing hand-made Japanese knives into Germany and Europe for many years – in particular long fish filleters such as Yanagiba knives for sashimi, or fine filleting knives in general –
I have noticed that, while these knives are greatly admired because of their highly specialist nature, they have ultimately not really achieved a foothold in the market because of the different demands they place on cutting technique, sharpening and care. Japanese knives that have been adapted to western needs by sharpening them on both sides are an exception to this rule. Their shapes, cutting edges and characteristics have been adapted to meet our requirements.
Designing a good, functional fish knife has been on my agenda for a long time. My experience and know-ledge gave rise to the idea of deriving the benefits of both knife cultures and harnessing them to design fish knives for professional European chefs and fish processors. These knives combine the advantages of cutting ability, long-lasting cutting edge retention and ergonomics in terms of material, size and shape. Their attributes are matched to the preparation and processing of the types of fish that are predominant here in Europe.
In July 2016 the first meetings took place with Edwin Vinke, head chef and owner of the Michelin-starred restaurant “De Kromme Watergang” in Hoofdplaat, Zeeland, the Netherlands. His cuisine is 95% specialised
on the fish and shellfish that are primarily caught in the waters off the coast of Zeeland. In his kitchen
I again had an opportunity to study the art of filleting fish, the types of knife used and the characteristics of their blades and handles. This experience, together with my other experiences outlined above, resulted in the design of the new “SeaKnives – for fish from the northern seas”. Edwin Vinke supported the creation of the knife and tested the product through the various stages of its development. His input delivered valuable suggestions for improvement.
The final result is four knives that have special characteristics for portioning and filleting round and flat fish. Two of them have rigid blades while the other two have flexible ones. For the blades we selected durable chromium molybdenum vanadium steel with a high carbon and high chromium content, to ensure an
extraordinary degree of hardness and toughness. The hardness of the blades is ca. 59 HRC and this is paired with exceptional toughness. We have also designed the cutting geometry to cope with high stresses, so that the hard work of filleting fish, even with bone contact, can be easily coped with. Of course, the blades are finely ground and blue-glazed by hand (our speciality at Windmühlenmesser®/Windmillknife®). Elegant walnut wood or hard-wearing POM plastic can be selected for the hand crafted handles.
Our aim with these fish knives is to offer highly functional and professional tools for daily work.