Hand Cut Shichirin - Rectangle
Shichirin (七輪) are traditional Japanese portable grills used for cooking food at the table, or outside. They are sometimes also referred to as 'hibachi' or 'konro' outside of Japan. The rectangle shape shichirin is ideal for grilling yakitori and has a single compartment to enlarge the grilling area. Our shichirin are not made from compressed off-cuts or laminated blocks, but are hand cut, shaped and fired from diatomaceous earth ('keisodo') in the Noto Peninsula of Japan. Only two families in Japan still make them like this.
The diatomaceous earth deposits of Noto Peninsula are roughly 12 million years old. It is a soft, sedimentary siliceous rock formed from the fossilised remains of diatoms, or phytoplankton - microscopic organisms that live in the upper layer of the ocean. This makes the shichirin porous and light, with excellent insulating properties to retain heat for long periods of time with very little charcoal.
The best charcoal to use is Kishu binchōtan from Japan, which keeps a constant heat for up to five hours, complimenting the shichirin's insulating properties. We also sell 1kg boxes of binchōtan for use with shichirin, or you can use other charcoal if cooking outside.
January 2024 update: Our supplier - Noto Nenshouki - suffered very heavy damage to their factory with the Noto earthquake on New Year's Day 2024. The grills in stock were shipped just before the earthquake hit and might not be replenished when sold out. WAZA is donating 20% of the shichirin sales price back to the Funaba family to rebuild their business, if possible.
NOTO NENSHOUKI is a fourth-generation family business who in its first generation took over the manufacturing of traditional shichirin at an existing diatomaceous earth mine, outside the city of Suzu in the Noto Peninsula. The family continues to make the grills by hand according to the traditional methods. This involves cutting blocks of diatomaceous earth by hand, then shaping the grills once the blocks have begun to dry, firing them for at least 40 hours at 800°C, after which the shichirin are painted and strengthened with brass plates. A team of approximately seven people are involved in the business and the current President is Shinichi Funaba.
To see a Japanese-language video on this family and exactly how these shichirin are made, click here.