Bishop Pipes

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Tonino began his pipe-making career in 1981, with his father-in-law, who owned a mill and performed the drilling, in Calabria. By 1983, the fledgling artisan relocated to Marche, Jesi, not far from Pesaro, and set up a tiny shop in his home. From the onset, Jacono had two goals from which he never wavered: produce excellent smoking instruments, and do so at extremely fair prices. In many ways Signor Jacono remains "old school," in the most charming sense of the phrase. He still works in that tiny shop and employs very few of the modern power tools that we would normally associate with modern pipe making.

Tradition addressed, Tonino's never-ending quest to provide pipe smokers with the finest briars possible has led to a recent innovation in shaping: a subtle reduction in size in favor of more graceful and elegant forms. Also worth noting is that he obtains his briar from the same source as Claudio Cavicchi, and then seasons it for an additional three years before crafting it into an exceptionally grained pipe.

Tonino's grading system follows the relative piece values as they relate to the game of chess: Pawn (sandblasted), Knight (rusticated), Bishop (previously called "Jack"), Rook, Queen, and King. An "E" stamp represents a half step between grades and a "Checkmate" indicates a briar of exceptional size.