There is something about the rustic 'blacksmith' finish (or kurouchi finish) that feels more natural. Leaving behind its makers mark, the black hammered steel billet is is gradually polished back in the sharpening process, revealing the blacksmiths' handiwork underneath.
This process results in a duality of refinement and roughness that is a great metaphor for Japanese culture itself; the subtle arrangement of nature into a transcendent form, without disturbing its original roots.
Embracing the random patterns that develop in the steel through hammering creates a perfect tool once honed and refined.
We have a scant few 'Kurouchi' finish knives available here.