Japan, 〒600-8079 Kyōto-fu, Kyōto-shi, Shimogyō-ku, Kajiyachō (Sakaimachidōri), 堺町通松原下る鍛冶屋町242
Photo by San Rostro/age fotostock
Aritsugu Knife ShopThere’s a lot of tourists Instagram-browsing in Kyoto’s famed Nishiki Market shops, which hawk salt-pickled cherry blossoms, barrels of other pickled vegetables, and takoyaki (fried octopus balls). But step off the bustling main drag and into this legendary knife shop to discover a rarefied world of chefs deliberating over blue steel boning knives with magnolia handles, or 12-inch Japanese alloy with rosewood and water buffalo horn. The tiny shop is chockful of handmade blades and cutting utensils gleaming like evidence behind glass cases. But Aritsugu is principally known for its custom-made knives, especially popular with lefties. The shop will also engrave your name or initials on your blade for free via the revolving whetstone behind the counter.