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Calabresi/Calabrest

Discussion in 'Pipes' started by CoreyR, Jun 18, 2013.

  1. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Ok, I have several Calabresi and Calabrest pipes. I have no idea how but they seem to gravitate to me. As I understand it, the "Calabrests" are the seconds of the Calabresi line which may be a second in and of itself.
    Here is my question/thought/comment; am I the only one that likes these pipes? I mean, I find them to be affordable and of good quality. I have yet to find one that is not a good, or even an exceptional, smoker. Sure, they may not be a Peterson or a Dunhill but, so far mine are very good. Yet, I never hear any mention of them on forums and there is next to no information on the net. Just curious as to whether I have wierd tastes in pipes or not. It wouldn't be the first time I had strange likes for things others bypass (hence the Martini-henry hanging on my wall and my absolute LOVE of my M1911).
     
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  2. Terry292

    Terry292 Member

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    The late Thomas Cristiano was a briar dealer/pipemaker from Florida, via Italy. At one time he was a manager for the SM Frank Company, makers of Kaywoodie, Medico and Yello-Bole pipes. Later he made pipes under the Cristiano brand name. Calabrisi and Calabrest pipes were his seconds, although some of them were made in Italy and marketed under the Calabrisi name. Paul's Pipe Shop has a good, if brief, resume of his career: http://www.iapsc.net/store/cristiano.html Tom tragically passed away a few years ago. I don't know if Cristiano/Calabresi pipes are still being made. In my opinion, he's one of the most underrated pipe makers in the world today.

    This is one of my Cristiano Signature pipes. It's definitely not a clencher: [​IMG]
     
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  3. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Thanks Terry. It seems to me that I had read some of that, somewhere, once upon a time. I did not know the Cristiano part though. I shall have to look for one of these. If the "seconds" are this good, the "firsts" must be truly great.
     
  4. ruffinogold

    ruffinogold Ruffinogold-Mayor, I.R.G.E.--At Large. Mayor

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    You touch a sweet spot with the mention of these pipes . They were/are from Cristom imports in Tampa Florida . They use Sardinian and Italian briar and many of them are made in Italy . Thomas Christano was the owner of the company . He started sweeping floors in the SM Frank company and ended up making Kaywoodies , distributing Mastro De Paja , making probably every off brand Italian pipe on the market [ Brindisi and the like ] , importing basically every Italian accessory related to pipes and cigars that you see and on and on it goes ... The Calabresi pipes are not seconds . Many time people here at PSF see a brand that they aren't familiar with or is an old smaller brand and figure theyre seconds , which isn't the case , even if the company that makes them makes other brands , such as Cristom .. which made many brands . The Quality of Calabresi is a good factory pipe and they had some good rustication and a killer pipe called a metamorphsi [ or something like that ] that was a convertible option filter pipe [ I've been looking for one for some time ] . Tom Christano helped me get a good start in my retail pipe shop and was maybe the nicest man I've ever met ... bar none . He passed away 7 years or so ago ... the beautiful thing about his passing is that he went home to Calabria [ South Italy , also the root of the Calabresi name and a source of Italian Briar ] and passed away there which is what he wanted . Since his passing the company has changed and I haven't kept up with it . You should have seen his pipe collection ....... it was insane !!
    Anyway , the pipes are good quality factory pipes coming from good briar . I could write about Tom all day and all the things he was involved with in the industry ... he was a major player
     
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  5. Terry292

    Terry292 Member

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    Thanks for the clarification. I never met Mr Cristiano, but I own more than one of his pipes. I remember seeing those Metomorphisi pipes in an old Finck Cigar Company catalog. You could smoke them with a filter, or with an adapter. I always meant to try one, but just never pulled the trigger on one.
     
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  6. ruffinogold

    ruffinogold Ruffinogold-Mayor, I.R.G.E.--At Large. Mayor

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    I miss him . He took good care of me when it came to my shop ! He was , years ago , the T in FGT enterprises , which is the company that owns the Edwards franchise name and produces Edwards pipes and they make their own tobacco . They had a falling out many years ago and now the T stands for something else .. Grudges .. lol . His signature pipes are killer !! My friend chuck knows more about what happened to the company after he passed , I think his sister took it over ... I'm gonna find out :) If you see some Metamorphisi , bag one and let me know cause I'll want one too
     
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  7. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Thank you much for that information. I am glad you got to know the man. I was thinking these are some good quality pipes, though some of mine have been abused. I got some when I was in the Army and a couple of them are "jump qualified." LOL Had I known, I woould have taken just crappy Dr Grabows along to the field and on deployments. Now I shall redouble my efforts to find more of the Calabresi and Calbrest pipes.
     
  8. ruffinogold

    ruffinogold Ruffinogold-Mayor, I.R.G.E.--At Large. Mayor

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    You got any pictures of them ?
     
  9. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    [​IMG]
    The one in the front is a Calabrest which I particularly like. Very simple and smokes very well. I tend to use it for FM and, once in awhile, some Virginias.
     
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  10. ruffinogold

    ruffinogold Ruffinogold-Mayor, I.R.G.E.--At Large. Mayor

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    That's the texture I like so much ! I had a Canadian with that texture and I could kick myself for selling it
     
  11. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    I am afraid that I am at work right now and do not have pictures of others already taken.
    Wait, I have one with me. One of my older ones which is, "jump qualified." I broke the stem on this one long ago and fitted a replacement myself. Did not do that good of a job since I was using one from a batch I had purchased and really had no idea what I was doing. I LOVE this bowl though, It is soooo thick that it NEVER gets hot. I have probably had this pipe for 22 years and it has been with me on three continents, hung out of my mouth as I hung out of a chopper, rode in my cargo pocket through many jumps, been puffed on through a few gunfights, and, on one memorable occasion, was puffed rather hard while I hugged mother earth while 105 shells rained down, OUR 105 shells! This was always my favorite.
    [​IMG]
     
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  12. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Yeah, I love it too.
     
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  13. ruffinogold

    ruffinogold Ruffinogold-Mayor, I.R.G.E.--At Large. Mayor

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    Sweet pipe ! Bet ya smoked a couple hundred bowls through it ! Keep that pipe near and dear
     
  14. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Oh I do keep it near and dear. Even as beat up as it is. I have now learned the importance of taking care of my pipes and the importance of tobacco. Back then I only knew the OTCs which were available at the PX. CH, CBG, CBW, SWR, etc. Man they were cheap though. Maybe $1.50 a pouch.
     
  15. County Mountie

    County Mountie Active Member

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    Awesome pipe. Doesn't Sally sell that line at pipe shows? I could swear I've seen them on her table.
     
  16. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    Dunno Mountie, I have never been to a pipe show. Gun shows yes, pipe shows, no. LOL BTW, I am heading back to Williamsburg on Monday.
     
  17. jdto

    jdto Well-Known Member

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    That kind if story attached to a pipe is the reason a cigarette or cigar will never be able to stand up. They burn away and are gone, but a pipe can carry the memories of a lifetime. Thanks for sharing, man.
     
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  18. Summit

    Summit Live Simply.

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    I had two Calabrest pipes at one time. One was a smooth billiard and the other a bent. I ended up selling them although they were decent pipes.
     
  19. Tsalagi44

    Tsalagi44 Active Member

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    Wanna work out a trade for the M1911? Seven shot? :byg:
     
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  20. CoreyR

    CoreyR Active Member

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    That leaves my possession when I die. Then my daughter gets it. Sorry dude.
     
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