I'm very, very pleased to see this ultra-slender-shanked straight Billiard. Why? Because we don't see designs like this from Paolo nearly as much as we once did, and there have been times when I was beginning to wonder if he was phasing them out. With these he manages to create dramatic, and instantly recognizable reinterpretations of the classic shapes, while still keeping them clean and simple. And from an artisan's perspective, one should also consider how challenging a design style like this is to realize - if one natural flaw in the briar reveals itself, or one mistake is made while shaping such a delicately-proportioned shank and transition, it's time to start all over. It's quite fortunate that didn't happen here, as this particular piece produced quite an impressive ring grain.
- Eric N. Squires