"A restaurant that insists on the best knives, will make delicious food"

A restaurant that cares about its equipment and produce in equal measure. Macauda Italian Restaurant's head chef, Akihiro Hamaguchi takes us through his start in the industry and why he uses Sakai Ichimonji's Premium Japanese Kitchen Knives.

"Originally, my mother used to run a Japanese side-dish shop and at the time I worked in a major Italian restaurant chain. At first I felt it was just a side job and I really wanted to be in a band, but I became more aware of cooking as a career because of my mother."

He eventually became part of a band and continued working part-time at the Italian restaurant. There were many manuals and instructions on finishing and presentation, so he learnt the basics and continued his study of design at vocational school.

Before Chef Hamaguchi turned 22, he began to think deeply about his future and moved to an Italian Restaurant in Umeda. While working there he learned of a new French Bistro preparing to open in Ashiya (West of Osaka). He joined the French bistro and helped launch the business together with the owner. Chef Hamaguchi fondly remembers the food prepared by the owner at the time, who was festidious in his preperation.

"The food was very delicious, but for some reason, we never had customers."

The business closed within only a year and Chef Hamaguchi still couldn't understand why customers hadn't taken to the restaurant.

After the failed French Bistro, he went to a restaurant called "Pappa" back in Osaka. Here, Chef Hamaguchi would learn a lot about identifying good ingredients at the produce markets and how to use them effectively in main dishes.

The owner of the restaurant was Chef Matsumoto, a popular chef on Japanese TV and his unique approach had caught Chef Hamaguchi's eye. Chef Matsumoto explained that food had to be delicious, but the connection to the customer was just as important and that it was extremely important to engage with customers.

Thoughts on Italy

Chef Hamaguchi had heard that a chef friend of his had trained in Italy for a time, which aroused his interest in travelling to Italy and learning authentic Italian cuisine. But, as life often happens, one door closed while another opened. Chef Hamaguchi lost his job but decided to go to Italy and try to find work when he arrived. Thankfully he found a job and began living his dream.

"I was studying Italian, but actually, I really had no idea what I was saying and relied on body language that first year. We were so busy, no one really had time to think about it."

Chef Hamaguchi noticed an interesting thing, and felt that Italians ate rather conservatively. Even though France and Spain were close by, they almost always ate Italian.

"In Japan, I usually think, "So yesterday I had western food and today I'll have Japanese" when I order food"

Also, Chef Hamaguchi noticed that Italians weren't driven by fads when it came to food. Each restaurant was known for something special and people would go based on there feelings each day. Each region of Italy had it's own specialty and characteristics. Although Chef Hamaguchi was based in Rome, he travelled to many different regions to learn about the local cuisine.

"While overseas, many people asked me, because I'm Japanese, to sharpen their knives. They seemed to think Japanese knives should always cut well."

Chef Hamaguchi ended up teaching the local chefs how to sharpen their knives.

"When I have my knives sharpened at Sakai Ichimonji, they feel totally different to when I do it myself."

Utilizing the Sakai Ichimonji Sword FV10 series for many years now, these blades continue to serve him well and gain popularity across Japan.

FV10 Gyuto(Chef Knife) 240mm

Authentic Italian at a reasonable price

"There are many Italian restaurants in Japan, but I think it is unlikely that a chef who has trained in Italy will open a shop in this price range."

Chef Hamaguchi uses local Japanese ingredients and applies the Italian style of cooking he studied while in Italy.

"I'm most confident in my Tuna Carpaccio. My hometown is Tanabe in Wakayama, and I get high quality local tuna from an acquaintance."

Of course Chef Hamaguchi feels his homeade pasta is delicious too and recomends everyone tries it.

Restaurant Information


〒540-0028 Osaka, Chuo Ward, Tokiwamachi, 2 Chome−1−3
Business hours

Lunch 11: 30-14: 00 Dinner 17: 00-23: 00
Closed Tuesdays
Phone number 06-4792-8262

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