15 East Soba Master's Beautiful Tools

One noodle maker's beautiful tools from the 15 East kitchen

Shigei Sugano rolls and cuts fresh soba every day, and we love the firm, nutty buckwheat noodles he serves at NYC's 15 East restaurant–with Japanese prawn tempura or spring onions and seared duck.

Soba makers can be secretive about their process, but Sugano let TT into the kitchen. That's where we captured this stunning image of the well-worn tools required to make the restaurant's noodles each morning.

Knife. The menkiri is a special sharp noodle blade used to make long, straight cuts through 12 to 20 layers of dough.

② Chopsticks. Elegant wooden chopsticks are often better than fingers for handling the strands of cut dough without doing damage to its shape.

③ Cutting board. Various sizes of komaita, or wooden boards, go on top of the noodle dough and provide a perfectly straight edge to guide the knife.

④ Brush. Flour is necessary to keep the many layers of dough from sticking together–a clean brush delicately gets rid of the excess.