When we talk about Doi-san, we have to talk about his father Keijiro Doi, as was a true master and remains a legend of knife-making. His Aogami single bevel knives are legendary, partially because he forge-welded and forged steels at a much lower temperatures than other blacksmiths, to avoid decarbonation of the steel and enlargement of the steel’s grain size. He passed his skills down to his son, Itsuo Doi, who has been forging knives for almost a half century.
He is very thorough at each step of the forging process. Rather than rush to forge his blades into the right shape, he heats up the steel just enough to make it workable. Overheating steel when forging enlarges the carbide (steel particle) size, which makes for a more brittle knife. By using as little heat as possible, Doi-san is able to make his knives more durable.
Originally Doi-san specialized in single-bevel knives, but Sakai Takayuki convinced him to make double-bevelled knives which gave birth to the Homura series that we carry today. Homura is an old way of saying flame or blaze. If you see the side of the knife, it has 焔 (Homura: flame) engraved on it. These knives are all sharpened by the Yamatsuka family, the resident master sharpeners at Sakai Takayuki. The father, mother and 2 sons work together, and they are the reason this blade looks as stunning as it cuts.