The Böker Plus Wasabi Cocobolo is equal parts art and utility. While we like Böker for their sleek EDC knives and durable outdoor blades, the Wasabi is in a different class. Brought to us by designer Kansei Matsuno, it’s distinctively Japanese. So it’s got performance to match its good looks.
Since 1992, Kansei Matsuno has been making knives that mix classic Japanese style with modern features. Many modern knives lean towards thick, heavy blades, with complex designs. Matsuno’s knives are slim, elegant, and lightweight. As fads come and go, his knives will always be popular, thanks to their timeless looks.
With its 2.8″ long, 0.10″ thick 440C blade, the 6.9″ long (open) Wasabi weighs a mere 1.6 ounces. Complementing the time-honored Japanese style blade is genuine cocobolo for the handles. Angled cuts plus nice grain patterns add visual interest. Inside, it gets smooth ball bearings which work well for this flipper. Although it doesn’t lock open, a slip joint and detent ball hold it open better than no lock at all. Rounding it all out is a milled pocket clip which is not reversible. Should you want to take it apart for cleaning, or if anything loosens up, a small wrench is included.
This design is as nice to look at as it is to hold and use. It flips open smoothly, and handles well for such a slender design. Rather than the usual heavy duty cutting, we gave it some light chores. That included slicing sandwiches and fruit, opening envelopes, and dispatching the occasional loose thread. All tasks befitting a “gentleman’s” knife. Just about any old knife can cut. But slicing food requires a sharp, thin blade, so it doesn’t crush its way through. Here, the Wasabi excels. Same with opening boxes and envelopes. The lean and mean blade is like a razor knife. Even after a couple of weeks, that 440C stainless blade looks and cuts like new.
Until I misplaced it, I had a similar blade I referred to as my “church knife”. Just fancy enough to carry in a suit pocket, it also lacked the “tactical” look that you sometimes want to avoid. Now, the Wasabi fills that void. Ideal for when you dress up a bit, but still want all the utility of a good EDC knife. Check it out in G10 or carbon fiber as well, at BökerUSA.com.
A special thanks to Böker for providing their Wasabi for this review.