Changing taste

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Demented

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#1
It all started with a Dr Grabow, followed by a CAO meerschaum, 3 - XL sized Peterson?s, then a half dozen basket/seconds and 4 corncob pipes to fill out the rotation, only 2 of the Petersons are still with me.

Over the year my taste in pipes has changed, from the Irish/English shaping to the Danish shape aesthetic and now I?m leaning very strongly towards the Italian. The pipes that catch my eye today carry names like Ardor, Becker, Cavicchi and Viprati.

I really like the Dunhill Diplomat shape, but can?t imagine paying $800 for a factory made pipe.

Have your taste in style and quality changed over the years?
 

jvande7

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#2
Over the years? :poop:- I'm only 3 months into this hobby and my tastes have already changed.

I started with aromatics and Carter Hall and was pretty sure I was an aromatic lover. Then I tried some SG Commonwealth and that really opened my eyes to the world of Latakia and English tobaccos, which lead me to try Squadron Leader. Then I was sure that I was a latakia man and even went out and bought a pound of Squadron Leader. THEN I ended up trying some Sunday Picnic which got me thinking that I definitely DID NOT like Perique at all - but my mind quickly changed when I tried Reiner Long Golden Flake and Escudo, and I found that I really enjoy those blends. Most recently I've been enjoying VA flakes like Orlik Golden Sliced and MacB Navy Flake and SG Best Brown and Reiner LGF.

So yeah, in the span of 3 months my tastes changed rapidly. I guess that's probably normal though for beginners. There is a natural urge to quickly branch out and try all genres. That seems the only way to find out what styles/genres/blends/brands you like and dislike. And you need to find that info out so you know how many pipes you need and how to devote them, etc.

I have a Savinelli 920, a Peterson 999, and a Stanwell 63m in my main stable (also have a couple basket briar pipes and some cobs) and those pipes are keeping me satisfied at the moment. I feel like I might buy a new pipe in the next month or two though - been itching for a Tinsky, also been looking at a few other more affordable options (trying to be responsible, wife recently went back to school and is not working). Tinksy stuff is great and I really want one, and I'm not saying his prices aren't where they should be, but if I can get a pipe for $60-$70 that satisfies my urges I may have to go that route for now instead of dropping $160+ on a Tinsky. Again I think the Tinsky prices are spot-on considering the quality, but that doesn't change my financial situation.
 

Sasquatch

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#4
The only real swing in my taste for pipes has been a new-found appreciation of freehand pipes. I only smoked fairly conservative shapes, and basically only bent pipes. But I got a hankering for a Stanwell queen at one point and it really opened my eyes to the "art" side of pipes. Now I have about 6 nice freehands, and I like them a lot. They aren't for mowing the grass with, but I do like the feel of them if I am sitting and reading or something.

Tobacco taste has ranged all over. I never even knew for about 10 years that all pipe tobacco didn't taste like Captain Black in some form or another. Took awhile to get going, but now I enjoy a wide variety of smokes. I am still tremendously sensitive to nicotine so many tobaccos remain "above" me.
 

Sasquatch

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#6
LOL I'd go for that. Things I can't smoke or even really touch include but are not limited too, almost any Dunhill (I can smoke some 965 but it's not a fave), any of the stronger stuff from Gawith, and that includes stuff like Kendal Cream Flake - I get off the boat at Best Brown. I can't smoke University Flake, Irish Flake or even Irish Oak from Peterson. They make my head swim in 5 minutes.

It sucks. Keeps me honest, however. I max out at 1 or 2 bowls a day or I get physically sick. People send me samples to try, and I light em up and 5 minutes later I'm unable to walk. It's embarrassing.

Baby steps. Luckily there are some terrific less strong blends out there.
 

Oglethorpe

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#7
Whoo.. I love the nic kick. Swimming head is a plus. Hiccups are a bonus. Maybe I'm a glutton for punishment, but I like my tobacco like I like my drinks. Stiff.

As for the thread topic, I'm another new guy and my tastes thus far have been Italian pipes and strong virginia-based tobacco. My favorite shapes are pots and pokers, and I'm not really thrilled by freehands (though I have a nice Karl Erik), billiards, or chimneystacks. I love huge chamber walls and big wide bowls. I love my big Savinelli pot -- I can barely close my thumb to my middle finger around the thing. Oh, and the Goblin from Sasquatch is a monster too. Pipes that give you a jaw workout... you know.

I suppose my tastes could change but I don't really see it happening. I have a ball from MdP that I love and I'm thinking about clearing out anything that I'm not crazy about. I may regret that down the road, but I'm not looking to be a collector of pipes, per se, just a man with a functional stable of stuff that I love.

YMMV, of course.
 

Demented

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#8
Oglethorpe said:
...my tastes thus far have been Italian pipes... pots and pokers, and I'm not really thrilled by freehands... billiards, or chimneystacks. I love huge chamber walls and big wide bowls. I love my big Savinelli pot -- I can barely close my thumb to my middle finger around the thing. Oh, and the Goblin from Sasquatch is a monster too. Pipes that give you a jaw workout... you know.
Now this is what I?m talking about? We call ourselves pipe smokers yet most of the time talk and talk and talk about tobacco. Sure tobacco is what we stick in the pipe and smoke, at least as far as I?m concerned tobacco as an aside to the pipe!

Thank you for bring up the topic of shape. I touched on it referring to my progression from classic English, through the Danish and into the Italian perspective of aesthetics without really talking about the shape I like or dislike other then really liking the Dunhill Diplomat.

In the early years I preferred pipes bent, for an eighth to full, never considered a straight pipe, a billiard or Canadian, Chimney, pot or stack, today they catch my eye.

As I tend to smoke aggressively from time to time, I too like a pipe with a good amount of briar between chamber and exterior bowl. And for whatever reason Poker and Zulu shapes of substantial size scream at me. I also have little to no interest in factory made pipe anymore.

Oglethorpe said:
I suppose my tastes could change but I don't really see it happening. I have a ball from MdP that I love and I'm thinking about clearing out anything that I'm not crazy about. I may regret that down the road, but I'm not looking to be a collector of pipes, per se, just a man with a functional stable of stuff that I love.
Of the 15 pipes in my original rotation, I have 2 Petersons, the cobs where smoked to death, the others where gifted to neophyte pipe smokers long ago.
 

Falconeer

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#9
Hi All,

Did wonder if I was the only one this was happening to. Somewhere in the early 70s I setlled comfortably into a rut and ran with a rotation of 7 Falcons for many many years - actually til last year.

Tobaccos were always Condor, St Bruno, Mellow Virginia and Craven Aromatic.

This year just gone I got seriously interested in corncobs and meers and smoke them most of the time now while my Falcons gather dust in their racks.

Also always preferred straight pipes, but it's definitely bents at the moment since I discovered you can get the flavour and the "nose" of the tobacco more strongly.

This time next year? Who knows!

Best to all

Gerry
 

Demented

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#10
Falconeer said:
...it's definitely bents at the moment since I discovered you can get the flavour and the "nose" of the tobacco more strongly.
Weird aint it?

I bought a sandblast Canadian last year:confused:, first sandblast pipe I?ve ever owned, first Canadian too.
 

babysinister

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#12
I haven't so much switched pipe preferences as added new styles to my collection. By now, I tend to prefer smoking specific tobacco category/blends in specific pipe shapes/sizes (dublins for most flakes, full bents for aromatics, etc.).
 

OldAtHeart

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#13
I've definitely seen a progression, and my collection reflects that. I started out tending toward bulldogs because that's what I remember my dad having around; it was a nostalgic thing. Then I started buying pipes based on physical attributes like bowl thickness, length of shank, overall size and weight. Soon after that, I was taken by straight grain pipes, particularly Danish freehand styles. Then, after a while of feeling burdened by oversized freehands, the practicality of the classic shapes (billiards, bent billiards, Oom Pauls, canadians, etc.) really started appealing to me. Around that same time I became fascinated the subtle differences in really good quality sandblasted and rusticated finishes. Now, some of my favorite pipes are blasted Ardors with that deep wavy ring-grain, or a Castello Sea Rock with their smooth and very organic rustication.

The nice thing is that after 10 years of that I've got just about one of everything in my collection, so if I relapse into former interests, I don't have to go pipe shopping. Also, with enough pipes in the collection, I pick my pipe based solely on my mood at any given moment (or rather, based on the tobacco, which is based on mood).

Today, I'll take a bent rhodesian with a military bit and a rusticated finish, over just about any pipe. Tomorrow- who knows?
 

babysinister

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#14
Great post OldatHeart. Your experience with different pipes and blend characteristics I think is very similar to mine. It reminded me of phases I've gone through with my pipes that I'd practically forgotten. We grow out of and back into different pipes and tobacco blends, as we now and then discover and perhaps incorporate new ones into this endless fandango.
 

Smoker99

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#15
I have been smoking pipes since 1966. The first twenty years or so, I smoked what was economically feasible since I had a growing family. Mostly machine made pipes and a combination of OTC and Tinderbox tobaccos. As my children grew up and left, and my disposable income increased, I discovered the world of high quality pipes and tobacco. A world of difference. I am surprised so many people stick with pipe smoking after starting with drugstore pipes and tobacco. The last twenty five years or so, I have increasingly been able to smoke what I choose.

I have owned hundreds of pipes over the last forty years, but now maintain a core of about 60 high quality pipes. They consist of Castello, Dunhill, Cavicchi, Upshall, Ser Jacopo, and a few boutique makers pipes. Tobaccos I smoke are Cornell and Diehl burlies, and Samuel Gawith or Gawith and Hoggarth for everything else, with a couple Rattrays in there.
 

Falconeer

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#17
Hi All,

There's been some really great and interesting posts in this thread which I've really enjoyed reading.

Someone once said to me that starting in on pipe smoking was like embarking on a voyage of discovery - lets hope it's an unending one!

Gerry
 
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