Trace the razor’s edge of the Pacific Ocean north of Los Angeles and you may find yourself in a quiet, west-coast beach town called Los Osos (“the bears”).
It’s a fitting name for avid outdoorsman and master bladesmith Don Carlos Andrade, whose heirloom-quality camp and chef knives would feel as much at home in the Ozarks as they do in Southern California. Don instills his art with a profound sense of spirituality, taking a ritualistic approach to knife making that involves the anointment of sage and a prayer for the health and wellness of its future owner. In this way, Don creates an intimate connection between his knives and the people who use them.
Classically trained as a chef and with experience working in bronze and stone, Don entered into an apprenticeship under master metalsmith Tai Goo in 2006. Ten years later, his mentor and friend acknowledged him as a bona fide master of the art. Today, Don’s focus on health and wellness shapes how each knife comes into being; he responds to the materials and is sensitive to how they work together to ensure each knife is a one-of-a-kind work of art.