Aogami Steel: Discover The Benefits

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Aogami is a type of steel made in Japan. It’s one of the hardest steels available and is used to make high-quality kitchen knives.

But what is Aogami exactly? Let’s find out.

What is aogami

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Aogami (Blue Steel): A Comprehensive Guide

Aogami, also known as blue steel, is a type of high-carbon steel that is primarily used in the making of knives. It contains a low amount of impurities and a high concentration of carbon, which gives it excellent hardness and good edge retention. Aogami is often referred to as the “blue” steel due to the blue paper wrap that it comes in.

Why Do Knife Enthusiasts Consider Aogami Exceptional?

Aogami is capable of attaining extreme hardness, making it one of the hardest steels used in knife making. This ability to achieve a fine edge finish when sharpened properly is highly sought after by chefs and knife enthusiasts. Additionally, Aogami contains additional elements such as silicon, manganese, and chromium, which greatly enhances its durability and reduces the likelihood of it becoming brittle.

What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Aogami?


  • Exceptional hardness and edge retention
  • Capable of achieving a fine edge finish
  • Contains additional elements that enhance durability


  • Relatively challenging to sharpen and requires skill
  • Reactive to moisture and can corrode if exposed to extreme conditions
  • Contains a low concentration of phosphorus, which can lead to inclusion formation and decrease its toughness

How to Care for Aogami Knives?

Proper care and maintenance of Aogami knives are essential to ensure their longevity and performance. Here are some tips to help you protect your Aogami knives:

  • Wipe the blade regularly with a soft cloth to remove any moisture or debris.
  • Wash the knife with warm water and mild soap, then dry it thoroughly.
  • Avoid leaving the knife in water or exposing it to extreme conditions.
  • Use a honing rod or sharpening stone to maintain the edge.
  • Consider applying a thin layer of oil to the blade to help protect it from rusting.

In conclusion, Aogami (blue steel) is an excellent choice for those who require a knife with exceptional hardness and edge retention. While it requires a bit of extra care and skill to maintain, the extended durability and edge retention make it a worthwhile investment for any chef or knife enthusiast.

About Aogami Super

Some popular makers of Aogami Super knives include Moritaka and Takeda. These makers are known for their high-quality knives and use Aogami Super steel to produce some of the sharpest and most durable knives on the market.

How is Aogami Super Heat Treated?

Aogami Super is heat treated to bring out its best qualities. The steel is heated to a high temperature and then rapidly cooled to increase its hardness. This process is known as quenching. The steel is then tempered to reduce its brittleness and increase its toughness.

Overall, Aogami Super is a fantastic steel for those who want a high-quality knife with excellent sharpness and durability. However, it requires proper care and maintenance to prevent rust and maintain its edge.

Disadvantages of Aogami Super

One of the main disadvantages of Aogami Super is that it rusts easily. This is because it contains a high amount of carbon and is classified as a non-stainless steel. To prevent rusting, it is necessary to wash and dry the knife after each use. It is also important to keep the knife updated with oil to prevent rusting.

Import and availability

Aogami Super is a rare kind of steel, mainly imported from Japan. It is not frequently found in local knife ware stores. Assuming that you can find it, it is mainly sold in the professional chef category, and the price is usually high.

Tough to sharpen

Aogami Super is tough to sharpen due to the high amount of carbon and other properties contained in the steel. It is necessary to use a high-quality sharpening stone to maintain the cutting edge. If you make a mistake while sharpening, it can be trouble to fix, and you may need to replace the blade.

Sticky effect

Aogami Super has excellent friction and resistance, which is a great feature for cutting. However, it can produce a sticky effect, which can reduce the number of times you need to sharpen the knife. This stickiness factor can be a disadvantage for some people who prefer a smoother cutting experience.


Compared to other types of steel, Aogami Super is expensive. It is highly ranked and performs well, but the cost may be a barrier for some customers. If you are hoping to purchase an Aogami Super knife, it is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages before making a purchase.

Comparing Shirogami and Aogami Japanese Knives

Shirogami and Aogami are two types of Japanese steel used in the manufacturing of knives. Shirogami, also called “white steel,” is a high-carbon steel that is easy to sharpen and tough, but not as durable as Aogami. Aogami, also known as “blue steel,” is a steel that contains tungsten and phosphorous, making it harder and more resistant to rusting than Shirogami.

What are the main differences between Shirogami and Aogami?

The main differences between Shirogami and Aogami are:

  • Hardness: Aogami is harder than Shirogami, which gives it superior edge retention.
  • Toughness: Shirogami is tougher than Aogami, which means it can withstand more abuse without chipping or breaking.
  • Sharpening: Shirogami is easier to sharpen than Aogami, but Aogami can be sharpened to a finer edge.
  • Corrosion resistance: Aogami is more resistant to rusting than Shirogami, which means it requires less care to prevent corrosion.

Which one should you choose?

When choosing between Shirogami and Aogami, it depends on what you’re looking for in a knife. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • If you want a knife that is easy to sharpen and tough, Shirogami is an excellent choice.
  • If you want a knife that is harder and has better edge retention, Aogami is the way to go.
  • If you’re a professional chef or sushi chef looking for the sharpest and most precise knife, Aogami is the better option.
  • If you’re on a budget, Shirogami knives are generally less expensive than Aogami knives.
  • If you’re concerned about rusting and want a knife that requires less care, Aogami is the better choice.

What are some other things to keep in mind?

Here are some additional things to consider when choosing between Shirogami and Aogami knives:

  • Shirogami knives are softer than Aogami knives, which means they can dull pretty fast.
  • Aogami knives are more difficult to sharpen than Shirogami knives, but they can reach a greater degree of sharpness with the help of a whetstone.
  • Aogami knives contain extra elements like tungsten and phosphorous, which help retain toughness slightly better than Shirogami knives.
  • Aogami knives are highly sought after by professional chefs and sushi chefs worldwide due to their superior hardness and edge retention.
  • Despite being an older way of manufacturing knives, Shirogami and Aogami are still the closest thing to traditional Japanese knives made by artisans.
  • Both Shirogami and Aogami knives require care to prevent rusting when exposed to corrosive elements like nitro and V.
  • Cobalt is a dangerous element that can be found in some Aogami knives, so it’s important to check the manufacturer’s specifications before purchasing.

If you have any questions or want to learn more about the value of Shirogami and Aogami knives, contact Jonathan, a passionate engineer with a specialization in materials and particularly interested in researching the different types of Japanese knives.


So there you have it, everything you need to know about Aogami steel. It’s a high-carbon steel that contains additional elements for durability, and it’s known for its hardness and edge retention. It’s a great choice for chefs looking for a high-quality knife. So don’t be afraid to take the plunge and buy one! I hope this guide has helped you understand it a little better.

Check out our new cookbook

Bitemybun's family recipes with complete meal planner and recipe guide.

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Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.