I've seen quite a few Matzhold pipes, and there's no doubt this Austrian artisan's sterling reputation for design and execution are well-earned. This boxwood-accented bent Apple, to my eye at least, stands as an especially fine example of just what Peter is capable of; the form is precise and handsomely balanced, the lines are just beautifully smooth, and both flame grain and birdseye are rich, plentiful, and presented in an attractively smoky, contrast-stained style. Finally, when it comes to the other materials at play, both the pale boxwood accent and jet-black stem are perfectly formed and fitted, working as natural continuations of the briar's design. Frankly, I'm surprised this one didn't get Matzhold's "CU" grade, which indicates his very best work.
- Eric N. Squires