I've been at Smokingpipes for more than a while now, and I have seen and studied many a pipe. With that being said, Luigi Viprati is still one of the most interesting, if not the most brave, Italian pipemakers I've come across. Looking back at the many Vipratis in our archive, I can tell the man likes to take risks and doesn't mind trying something new, as he typically does, on almost every single one of his attempts.
In saying that, you could say that this piece is an interpretation of a series created by pipe making legend Teddy Knudsen awhile back, one he appropriately described as 'surfing' because of the prominently planked heel at the base. On this pipe, the stylistic flourish is far more subtle than most other attempts I've seen, to the point were it becomes well assimilated with the rest of the design, not at all subtracting form the minimalistic splendor of the perfectly rounded bowl or the softly architectural shank. Did I mention the grain grade is at '5 clovers', the very best of their flame grained pipes?