Well, this is my very favorite pipe. It was the first nice briar pipe I bought (nice being anything that is not a "basket pipe"), and holy crap did it turn my world upside down! I went from enjoying pipe smoking as an occasional hobby to being completely, utterly obsessed with it. What's funny is... I only bought this pipe the day after Christmas - Jan. 26, 2011 - but it feels like it was many many years ago. For about a year and a half I smoked basket pipes filled mostly with crappy aromatics, because that is what the guy at the B&M recommended. I don't know why, but they tend to recommend this one particular aromatic mixture to a lot of people, and it is good as far as aromatics go, but they have much better stuff in there, so I don't know why they don't recommend that stuff. Anyhow, I started buying up all sorts of tobacco, from MacBaren to McClelland to Dunhill and beyond, and it's been quite the love affair. I still can't believe it's only been a couple of months. Actually a little less than that! Anyway, on with the show, my very favorite pipe! It is a Neerup, by Peder Jeppesen, and the nomenclature says "Neerup [over] Denmark [over] Selection [over] 3". The grain is drop dead gorgeous, and along with the wonderful, hand filling heft of the shape, is the reason I bought the pipe. It was only $87 plus tax, an absolute, screaming bargain considering the very high quality of the pipe. I don't know enough about briar to know much about its quality, but I do know that if appearances mean anything, this stuff is primo! Here are some pictures: (Flash glare strikes again, but you can see the birdseye). So yeah. This thing has a draw like a well made woodstove, has a nice, diamond-ish shank with alternating straight grain and birdseye, jutting transition that is very Danish, and overall is a fantastic composition. I absolutely love it, and it fits in my hand PERFECTLY. That is one thing about buying pipes over the internet: you don't get to hold the thing before you buy it, which is certainly problematic. I bought this one at The Briary in Homewood, Alabama (part of the Birmingham metro area), which is a phenomenal B&M in my beloved hometown, run by two really great guys. The crowd that hangs out in the smoking room is great, too, and I am going to Birmingham tomorrow and look forward very much to going to the Briary for some smoking and camaraderie. I know that there are better pipes out there, and ones that are made entirely by hand to boot (which I don't think Neerup's are, at least not in this price range), but I just love this thing. It has a very nice cake in it now, and it smokes like a dream every time. Without fail, I smoke my morning bowl of either AM Pipe (McClelland) or Dunhill EMP in it, because it starts my day off right every time. There's something to be said for a pipe that makes you feel comfortable and at home, and this pipe does that for me, even when I'm not actually at home. So there she is: my very favorite pipe!