Discussion in 'Pipe Tobacco Reviews' started by woody, May 26, 2012.
I like the photos, I wish I had thought of that.
Well then those damn Maine drivers, we get lost when we get to the mass border...
Again glad to hear that your wife is alright
Sample #2: is what appears to be Balkan Blend.
Appearance: this blends moisture content is ideal and ready to smoke, it has broken ribbons with some yellows, browns & blacks with some sparse olive greens
Bag note: a mild smokiness with Oriental overtones.
Charing Light: lights readily, oh yeah, now that's what I'm talking about, wonderful smoky flavor with a nice Oriental tang.
First third of bowl: a very well balanced blend with mostly Latakia and Oriental with the Virginias just rounded out the blend, a nice tang and sourness from the Orientals, taste like something I have smoked before but not destinct enough to be recognized.
Second third of bowl: building a bit of spice from the latakia/Orientals, I can definitely tell it is high quality leaf, sour tanginess from the Orientals and developing some butteriness which is quite nice, a nice zesty zip when snorked, I would call this a medium Balkan at this point.
Final third of Bowl: sourness,spice and butteriness continues building, spice is becoming mildly pepper like, no real sweetness was detected at any point.
Conclusion: I would say this blend is dominated mainly by the orientals followed by the Latakia with the Virginias bringing up the rear, excellent balance to the blend, with all the characteristics of a high quality blend.
Positives: excellent balance, high quality tobaccos, plenty to ponder in the Oriental department, sour,tang,butter & spice.
Negatives: minuscule ashy taste near the end of the bowl, but I smoked it 100%.
Final Verdict: a very good medium Balkan style blend with plenty of Oriental character, I liked this one a lot, definitely something I would consider purchasing, I give it a drooling Homer...
Sample #2 is MacBaren HH Vintage Syrian. Awesome review and glad you liked it.
Excellent reviews so far briar boy
It smokes great, love it
I knew I had smoked it but couldn't put my finger on it, cool cause I just bought a pound of it a few weeks ago.
Sample #3: a Moderately moist blend, as best I can tell it's a light aromatic, I haven't a clue what this is.
Appearance: a mix of lightly cased bright yellow, dark brown and black irregular flakes
Bag note: a very slight dried fruit scent, very little smell from what I can discern.
Charing Light: took a little extra time to get going, but burns well once ignited, Sweet taste followed by bitterness.
First third of bowl: thankfully the bitterness went away almost immediately, may have been due to the lighting process, pretty mellow sweet smoke, very similar characteristics as sample #1 with a little more smokiness/body.
Second third of bowl: smooth & mellow with a sweet smokiness, I can't really label the sweet flavor as anything other than sweet, may be a vanilla but I can't discern, easy snorking with no burn there but getting a minor burning sensation in the mouth.
Final third of Bowl: the flavor has been pretty consistant, mouth burning a bit which is probably due to the added topping, starting to get a bit ashy taste, getting a very slight throat irritation.
Conclusion: Not unpleasant other than the minor burning mouth/ashy throat.
Positives: the sweet with added smokiness was somewhat nice, flavor pretty consistent throughout the bowl.
Negatives: minor bitterness at light up but went away quickly, no real tobacco flavor, minor mouth burn and very slight throat irritation, ashiness near the end of the bowl.
Final Verdict: not something I would buy but not bad for a light aromatic with a little sweet smokiness, but lack any real tobacco flavor as so many aro's do.
This is 50% Sugar Barrel and 50% Shortcut to Mushrooms. I don't know if that's cheating but I smoke this more than anything else I love it.
The rest are straight blends I promise. I just wanted someones opinion on one of my favorites.
That would fit the sweet & smoky profile perfectly, eager to get to #4 .
Smoke #4 however you want but when I smoke it I stuff it instead of rubbing it out. You may want to try it both ways and see what you think.
Sample #4: I have been anxious to get to this one as it was the most interesting visually, to guess I would say a GH scented flake of some sort, I don't think I have had this before.
Appearance: this is a dark brown flake with light streaks throughout, cut into small 1/2"x 1/2" pieces, possibly to help disguise it's indentity even further .
Bag note: I think I detect a light Lakeland scent and also a sweet dark virginia scent.
Charing Light: after fully rubbing out the flakes, the charing light did take a little extra effort as most flake do, upon lighting the Lakeland sauce definitely makes it's self known, not strongly though, me likie .
First third of bowl: the dark Virginia has a bit of spice and the Lakeland sauce is more smelled than tasted at this point, getting little bursts of sugar from the Virginia, pretty smooth stuff.
Second third of bowl: smelling and tasting the Lakeland essence here and there but it is not dominanting, a mild spiciness with a wonderful sugary sweetness from the Virginia is pretty consistent now.
Final third of Bowl: Earthy notes along with the Lakeland essence memorize the senses when snorked, slight stinging of the nostrils as well but not in an unpleasant way, the spiciness has mellowed a bit at this point.
Conclusion: I don't think I have experienced this blend before but it is an excellent example of a mildly scented Lakeland Flake and would definite enjoy smoking more of it.
Positives: Very nice sweetness, the Landland essence is not overbearing but makes presence known, smooth with no ashy aftertaste.
Negatives: what negatives?
Final Verdict: Very good and will be smoking more of it in the future hopefully, very curious to find out what it is. This one gets a drooling homer as well...
Especially the horse from Ren and Stimpy.
Great reviews on all so far Briar Boy as we anxiously await what #4 is.
Great photography too.
What kind of camera do you use? Macro mode I am sure.
Also belated happy bday.
It's a Panasonic Lumix FZ-100, having a light box helps a lot.
Leica lenses rock.
#4 Erinmore Flake. Glad you liked it. But I don't think it is a Lakeland.
Sorry for the lull in my reviews, between being drunk and disorderly Friday night and Saturday, feeling a little less than stellar Sunday, dealing with the insurance company(s) over my wifes accident and chasing my almost 7 month old around the house + work I haven't had much time to enjoy my pipe.
Without further adieu here is my next review:
Again, being new I don't really know the terminology for the different cuts (other than flake and plug cause they're easy LOL) but this one appears to be Shag cut? Or really short ribbon. Anyways, it contains very wide, short leafy brown pieces, along with thin medium wispy golden pieces. Lastly, there are wide, short, leafy, and slightly thicker/more substantial pieces. It seemed a smidge on the dry side, but upon further inspection I think this blend is borderline perfect for smoking. Another day out and it probably would have been too dry..
The tin note on this one was quite sweet, almost like warm sugar. There was also a slight fruitiness to it. I took a really big, deep sniff and I got kind of a chocolate covered raspberry type note. The warm sugary smell also is starting to smell a bit like vanilla extract, with that little bit of alcohol biting my nostrils. Overall this blend smells quite pleasant, I'm assuming its an aromatic, being not much of an aro fan, we'll see how this goes. It's not that I hate them, it's just I often find myself disapointed/let down when the smoke tastes absolutely nothing like the fantastic tin note.
No wind, low humidity and a bit cool, perfect smoking weather. When the flame hit the tobby I was instantly greeted by the same sweet, warm sugar/vanilla taste that I noted in the bag. There was also a nice natural tobby flavor in there as well. It almost tasted like a Black and Mild cigar. It lit very easy, and only required 1 char light.
1/3rd of the Bowl:
This tobby didn't have as much going on as my first 3 samples. The other 3 were very complex, this one was nice and simple, which was a good change of pace. Warm sugar/vanilla flavor was still there. The smoke tasted sweet, but not too sweet. I was surprised as to how cool the smoke was, like ice cube cool, it was quite nice. The smoke was also creamy and full in my mouth, and when "exhaled" very full/thick.
2/3rds of the Bowl:
Stayed lit quite well, smoke was still cool as a cucumber. All the sweet, warm sugar, vanilla notes were still present. When snorked it tasted almost sugar cookies sweet with a slight twang that tickled my nose. The natural tobby flavor was there, but I was surprised as to how well the flavoring on this one held up. Not like other aro's I've tried where the flavor is non existant or it just tastes like ash or burnt tobby from smoking too hot due to all the casing..
All the flavors maintained throughout, I'm quite pleased with this aro. Burned GREAT and smoked so cool it was unreal. I think this was my coolest smoke yet, either it was really the tobby or I'm starting to get the hang of this pipe thing or both. Burned down to a course, light grey ash with no dottle. I really liked how the clean, natural tobby taste was complimented by the sweetness of warm, vanilla and sugar.
Well Spill, you have another winner. This blend really made me rethink how I looked at aro's (this is the part where Spill tells me it's not an Aro and that it's a Balkan or English or something LOL). I guess that's one of the points of this thread, I will definitely give aro's another shot after trying this blend. I would definitely recommend this blend for someone to try. Oh, I amlost forgot, I posted a thread about a month ago trying to ID a tobby that I first smelled as a child (4 maybe) and all I had to go on was the room note. The room not on this came extremely close, if not dead on to the one I remembered 23 years ago. It really got the grey matter going with trips down memory lane. Thanks Spill! Out of 4 stars I would give it a 3.75, smoked cool, burned well, maintained flavor, just not as complex as I lwould like.
If I were to name this blend, I would call it Warm Vanilla Dream
I've smoked # 5 and jotted down notes on it, just haven't formulated the full review. I will post it up either later tonight or tomorrow some time.