Sutliff - Troost Match
Love at 1st puff, and for me that is saying something. I am rather picky about aromatics. Either they are too subtle or too sweet. Troost is BALANCE. At least in my humble opinion. Not too sweet and not too bland. I highly recommend this to anyone who favors Va/Per or just Va blends. This reminds me a lot of C&D’s Bijou Cellar Series. It has the Virginia & Orientals like Bijou does. However the Black Cavendish and caramel topping (again not very sweet at all for caramel!) give just enough flavor to enhance the Virginia. Can’t promise that everyone will enjoy it, but I have certainly found my staple aromatic! Well done Sutliff!
CAO - Cherrybomb 50g
Aro for Non-Aro Smokers
I think the majority of the reviewers here were expecting Cult Blood Red moon or perhaps Virginia Gold Cherry. Not here. This is more like straight black toasted cavendish with just a pinch of cherry and vanilla bread aftertaste. Personally I think its quite delightful. Absolutely not a sticky over done aro. Goes perfect with a spot of Rooibos tea. Recommended for the non-aromatic smoker who is looking for something different.
Paladin - Black Cherry 1.5oz
The Dr. Pepper of Cherry Aros
To my taste buds this has an under note of fig/raisin much like Dr. Pepper has. That not quite all cherry flavor if that makes sense. And the pouch note certainly reminds me of candy store wild cherry. What sets this aromatic apart from others? Its burley and not cavendish. A good thing in my opinion.
Grand Croupier - Double Down
I’m writing this review as I am smoking my first bowl of this blend. It immediately reminded me of C&D’s Haunted Bookshop but more flavorful. That’s a good thing as far as I’m concerned! The quality of this blend for the price is outstanding. Absolutely will buy more for the cellar! :~)
Old German Clay - Flowing Fountain (Black)
With his black clay pipe...
Personally I love this pipe. This particular shape and mold. Yes some of them are not perfect. Bendy stem, crooked airway. But with a bit of practice this has become my top pipe. Even over some of my tried and true briars. Its greatest pro: no burnout. Fill it again right after as Holmes would do and enjoy. Depending on how you smoke that may become a bit wet. I’m a gentle puffer with this pipe. It also helps to keep the heat down on this bowl because it WILL burn your fingers if it gets too hot. The pipe itself can handle it being fired at some 1000+ degrees. But your fingertips won’t. Its greatest Con: it breaks easily. I’m on my 7th pipe currently. However I’m happy to say that this 7th has been the longest lasting now that I’ve learned to smoke it and handle it with care. It will not be everyone’ choice pipe but it is certainly mine. Try it out with some flake like C&D’s Bijou or S&G. I’ve recently tried John Cotton’s Double Pressed Virginia & Dark Fired. For me... it was fire on the mountain under a clear night winter sky. Just my take on it. Whatever you enjoy most give this pipe a try. It may be more satisfying than you thought.
Seattle Pipe Club - Galloping Gertie 2oz
I was skeptical to try this as many Seattle Pipe Club blends take after Plum Pudding. Which I love dearly, but I like a change. And here it is. This here is another wonderful creation by Joe Lankford. Very grassy & bright first puff. Crisp citrus at first then mellows a bit. The stoved Virginia’s combined with the unsweetened cavendish is a perfect seasoning just like a bit of sugar on top on barley cereal. I think I’ve found the complimentary blend to Plum Pudding.
Cornell & Diehl - Night Train 2oz
I decided to try this one based on all the reviews thus far, and they were right! This is a wonderful Burley blend. More flavor than most other burley I've smoked.
Cornell & Diehl - Kajun Kake 2oz
The Va-Per Race
I've tried a lot of Va-Per blends and often ponder how many ways can you use these leaves? Quite a lot it seems. For example I enjoy Briar Works Back Down South which is also a Va-Per blend. However entirely different in taste. B.D.S. is sweet like chocolate and citrus. This one is more earthy and nutty and I have to say gets even better throughout the bowl. A good smoke all round.
G. L. Pease - Barbary Coast 2oz
Very enjoyable. I don't feel the same as some of the other reviews in that I don't feel the top note of Brandy is strong. To my taste buds its mild and enhances the blend nicely.
Reiner - Blend No. 71 100g
A Delightful Evening
I really enjoy a lot of virginia blends and really didn't think I'd find anything I like better than C&D's Bijou. Well..... we've got a top contender here. I enjoyed this so much that I immediately picked another pipe, put more coffee on and packed another bowl. Yes, it was just as good and in some puffs, better. So now here's another one I have to make sure is safely resting in the cellar.
Missouri Meerschaum - Missouri Pride 1.5oz
This is my second favorite of the four blends MM makes. My first choice and favorite is Country Gentleman. Just my personal taste. That's what you get when you want virginia and THIS (Missouri Pride) is what you get when you go for Burley. All of these MM blends are fantastic and is proof that not all good quality pipe tobacco comes only in tins. No chemicals here and no overdone toppings. Nice and simple. Perfectly enjoyable.
Missouri Meerschaum - Country Gentleman 1.5oz
I agree with the other reviews that this blend is out of the pouch tobacco category. Its absolutely enjoyable with a cup of coffee or tea. This is a porch night smoke not to be missed.
Seattle Pipe Club - Plum Pudding Special Reserve 4oz
I'm a tremendous fan of the original Plum Pudding which I cannot give enough praise. However this special reserve truly is a much more rich blend. I read that Joe Lankford was offered these special small leaf tobaccos found on a shelf in a warehouse. Rather than making something new with them he took these and substituted them for some of the orientals in the original Plum Pudding blend. And that's what we have here. Yet another fantastic smoke from a great blender.
Cornell & Diehl - Bijou 2oz
Hard Virginia to Get Past
I've been trying many Virginia blends over the past 5 years but this one stopped me. Maybe thats a bad thing since a pipe smoker should be open to trying new blends. However I'm in love with this one. The hint of honey is just that. Only a hint and by no means overpowering. It allows the natural taste of the Virginia to shine through. As recommended I've put away a few tins and cannot wait to try it years from now. But as many other people have already said, it needs no aging to be great. It is absolutely fantastic right out of the tin.
Seattle Pipe Club - Plum Pudding 8oz
This is one of only two English blends that I smoke. Joe Lankford really created a masterpiece here. It is English. It is Balkan. Yet it stands alone of that ilk. I have an eclectic taste when it comes to tobacco. One day I want English. The Next a nice aromatic. Sometimes I want my plug cut burley. This blend gives you many tastes without being a convoluted mess. In fact it gets better throughout the bowl. When I'm being indecisive and can't pick what I want I have this. Always a good choice always enjoyable. True alchemy in tobacco blending.
Tampers & Tools - Pipe Nail
Simple & Impressive
Personally, I favor this tool over the many fancy pocket knife style ones out there. It's simple, inexpensive, and deep enough for most chambers. For the price of a high end hardwood scaled handle 3-in-1 tool, you can buy 15 of these. Tamps great, scrapes smooth. Will be hard for me to favor another!