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About West Japan Tools - If you’ve ever been to a Knifewear store, chances are you’ve heard the name “Shibata-san”once or twice. Takayuki Shibata-san is our good friend and the president of Masakage Knives, Kotetsu Knives, Tinker Knives and now West Japan Tools. West Japan Tools was started out of His desire to create the perfect frying pan, but it soon expanded to his other obsessions. Now Shibata-san creates functional art pieces for the kitchen, from pans to oven-mitts! Bottom Diameter: 24cm Bottom Diameter: 24cm (9.4") Bottom Thickness: 3 mm Bottom Thickness: 3mm Brand: West Japan Tools Check out the full carbon steel pan care article and video here. Designed by Takayuki Shibata and produced by West Japan Tools over a four year collaborative process, this carbon steel skillet is a beautifully crafted piece of cookware. Designer: Takayuki Shibata Did I mention that it fits in the oven? Finally, the handle. Shibata san was right on the nose about this one. With this style of pan you should always have a rag wrapped around the handle, and with a rag, the curve and length work perfectly. First of all, this thing heats differently than stainless steel. It heats at a good speed but doesn’t overheat as quickly a stainless pan. Not only does it heat fast, but it holds it. Often when you dump a ton of meat or veggies to stir-fry in a pan, you lose a ton of heat and stop searing. That isn’t the case here. For Glasstop stove owners: Due to the inconsistent heat produced by glass top stoves, carbon steel pans can warp with extreme heat. These can be used on glass, but heat them slowly and only season them in the overn, not on the stove. Induction cooktop compatible. KEY FACTS Location: Fukuyama City, Japan Low, angled sides allow for better evaporation. This creates a better sear because the moisture can escape more quickly. Made by West Japan Tools in co-operation w/ local craftsmen in the Fukuyama area, known for their steel craftsmen. Made from high-quality carbon steel in a 30cm top diameter and 24cm bottom diameter, 3mm thick on the base and tapered to 1.7mm on the sloped sides to reduce weight. The short curved handle is inspired by the curves on his Porsche 911. How badass is that? Requires seasoning & proper care. Read more about the story behind this frying pan here. Safe for oven and stove top use. Side Wall Thickness: 1.5mm Takayuki Shibata is turning out some excellent quality knives with premium steels and excellent grinds. His first offering is a nice series of SG-2 stainless knives called Kotetsu. They are thin, evenly ground lasers with excellent cutting performance. The skillet works like a classic, heavy, 3mm French carbon steel pan, but it’s lighter and fits in the oven due to its tapered sides and short handle. With that said it also works better than a 2mm thick Italian carbon steel pan, which also doesn't fit in an oven. The West Japan Tools Carbon Steel Skillet is a very lovely variety based on a classic French skillet. What makes it unusual is the fact that it is made in a press but is then machined on the inner sides to reduce weight while retaining a heavy bottom. The handle is a work of sculptural art, as is the whole design. These are true artisan quality items made in very limited number by a leading Japanese blacksmith. We have never seen anything quite like them or remotely as beautiful. A true collector’s heirloom item. Top Diameter: 30cm Top Diameter: 30cm (11.8") Weight: 1.7kg Weight: 1.7kg (3.7 lbs) West Japan Tools is an original tool brand. Iron craftsmen and other artisans cooperate to create products in pursuit of the beauty of function. While carbon pans and skillets have been around for centuries, they have not been so popular recently as people moved to stainless and non-stick pans. But recently these age-old throwbacks have entered a renaissance period as home cooks move to more classic ways of preparing and cooking food. While there is a bit of skill required to get these pans up to speed, once there they can beat pretty much any other material as far as toughness, ease of cleaning, and general versatility. Once seasoned you will be amazed at how non-stick these pans are. Eggs slide around as if on ice! The hardest crust can be wiped away with a kitchen paper towel!
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