Danish Estates: Jess Chonowitsch Smooth Billiard with Bamboo (*) Tobacco Pipe
Product Number: 004-001-33828
This long, svelte Billiard from Jess Chonowitsch is the kind of pipe to give real consideration. I know from experience that an investment like this is worthwhile, because I have a similar bamboo-shanked Chonowitsch Billiard that has been an absolute champ for the last 25 years and effortlessly endured everything I put it through. Both mine and this example have two knuckles of bamboo, though this piece wears a warm, smooth finish rather than a sandblast. It's not only a visual delight every time it's removed from the pipe cabinet, but it's among only a handful in my collection that I know will perform admirably every single time I load it. It delivers consistently excellent smokes time after time, even when I smoke it every day or even two or three times a day. Jess is widely considered the best pipe maker alive, and the lines, proportions, and details of his pipes all attest to that probability. It's the kind of pipe that will provide superior satisfaction for decades.
The bowl is classically Danish and particularly recognizable as a Jess shape. In fact, this is a configuration that Jess has crafted many times, probably because it's such an efficient performer. The rounded heel provides a foundation from which the flanks rise in a Brandy-like shape, and a gently inflated rim presides over the dense streaks of flame grain that surround the bowl from rim to heel. The short bamboo shank reduces the expected weight of the pipe, its two knuckles lithely separating the dark aspect of the mouthpiece from the lighter hues of the stummel with its own pale coloration, creating a lively trio of tones that keeps the look intriguing.
But for many who know Jess' pipes well, it's his precision in the shaping of his hand-cut mouthpieces that really supercharge his pipes' efficiency and smokability. The lip button is perfection itself, the internal engineering promotes a widening dispersal of smoke while providing airflow uninterrupted by turbulence, and the attractive shaping of the saddle configuration makes for an extremely comfortable bit. It's a big decision to purchase a Jess pipe because it's a substantial investment, but it's one that will pay off with consistent performance. Every collection should one day include an example of the best possible, and Jess delivers in that respect. For a pipe that will satisfy throughout its owner's lifetime and will remain a favorite, this Billiard is likely to be the best investment possible.- Chuck Stanion
Measurements & Other Details
Minor Rim Darkening
JESS * DENMARK
- Length: 5.48 in./139.19 mm.
- Weight: 1.73 oz./48.99 g.
- Bowl Height: 1.99 in./50.55 mm.
- Chamber Depth: 1.68 in./42.67 mm.
- Chamber Diameter: 0.79 in./20.07 mm.
- Outside Diameter: 1.60 in./40.64 mm.
- Stem Material: Vulcanite
- Filter: None
- Shape: Billiard
- Finish: Smooth
- Material: Briar
- Country: Denmark