Chris T.

Savinelli - Aroma 50g
Caribbean Blue Graham
I honestly wonder if I just got a bad tin, given the overall positive reviews here and elsewhere. When I opened my tin I had ordered about 15 months prior, the smell immediately reminded me of Graham by Caribbean Blue. Not almond or amaretto; coconut. Tobacco was very wet. Smoking was the same, mainly coconut. I couldn't find any vanilla. Later I smoked small bowls of Graham and Aroma back to back, and the coconut flavor seems the same to me. Both tobaccos are from K&K, so it seems plausible. While I like Graham, and find the coconut compliments the burley, Aroma is an unpleasant smoke except for the room note. The strongest element is the coconut, and I have a hard time tasting any tobacco. It has an overall sour taste which might be from the Orientals, but could also be one or more of the indistinguishable casings which have been liberally applied. No detectable nicotine and no distinguishable tobacco flavor that I could find, but the wife did say it smells good. It dried pretty well over a week and a half in the tin, so I don't think there's too much humectant, but there's definitely too much something added for me to find it enjoyable. Again, I have to wonder if the tin I got was somehow atypical, given the positive reviews. I did find a review elsewhere in which the reviewer noted it resulted in mouth dryness, which I also found to be the case (that reviewer's rating was overall positive.)

Orlik - Golden Sliced 50g
There's perique
A straightforward light Virginia, slightly sweet, with a little black pepper. I don't get any citrus taste. Some have noted a similarity to Capstan Gold, but I don't get that, either.

Cornell & Diehl - From Beyond 2oz
Does not taste like creosote
Latakia sometimes makes me feel like I've been smoking railroad ties and telephone poles. This Turkish Latakia doesn't do that. I hope C&D continues to use it. Nothing else to add that others haven't described better than I could.

Cornell & Diehl - Corn Cob Pipe and A Button Nose Ready Rubbed 2oz
Not what I expected, but good
This is a nice, light burley smoke, fairly dry (as opposed to sweet) in taste, backed up by the Cavendish and just a little by the Virginia. The tin note is a lot like Sutliff's Hill of Slane released this Spring- like opening a box of brownie mix. That note comes through as flavor for the first quarter of the bowl, then it's mostly gone, and I mainly get a pretty good burley blend taste. I wouldn't call it nutty, it doesn't have that oily richness, more woody and vegetal. There's a little vanilla which lasts to the end of the bowl, and I feel like that's the Cavendish, but it could be casing. It's a nice smoke, but not sweet, like I was expecting, though not astringent or bitter either. I think it would go well with eggnog (but I can't find the kind I like at the grocery store this year, so that's just conjecture at this point. )

Cornell & Diehl - Miskatonic Mixture 2oz
This has become my favorite oriental-forward blend. I agree with DeCles's impression that there's something mysterious feeling about it, and also with Markutio, that it smooths out with age. After a year in the jar, the roughness is gone, but I get some pepper from the perique that was obscured initially. This will be one I keep stocked.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Brown Flake Aromatic
Strong Virginia Lakeland
Nothing to add that others haven't already said. Other than to voice agreement. Really good.

Cornell & Diehl - Steamworks 2oz
Respectfully disagree
Tin note of rich Virginia with a slightly scorched note. Initial light is mostly woody, a little floral, and something that reminds me of the smell of blanched vegetables in the kitchen when my family would freeze vegetables. I don't get any of the sweetness I was expecting from the tin description and available reviews. The bowl progresses to a predominant bitterness rather than sweetness, with woodiness and vegetable notes. Strangely, the taste reminds me of black-eyed peas more than anything else. I'm saddened to nearly dismay that I'm not able to appreciate the sweetness others find in this blend. This is the first C&D product I have not enjoyed. I don't know if I will finish the tin, and would gladly swap my second tin for another Midsommar or Innsmouth or Oriental silk. Or a pint of frozen black-eyed peas. My opinion here is of course not meant to be argumentative with other reviewers, and I hope those who weren't able to get a tin find solace in hearing they may not have enjoyed the blend as much as they'd thought they would. It's smooth, slow and cool-burning, on the positive side, and nicotine is strong.

Wessex - Brigade Original Virginia 50g
Not the right product
I ordered this product listed as "Brigade Original Virginia" which was described as flavored with cider. I tried it in August 22, and found it very starchy, and couldn't tell what in the world anyone was tasting as cider. I put it away for a year and came back to it in July 23. Then, it had become a pretty good, straightforward, red Virginia. Still no trace of cider. I did some research and found that the product I was sent was exactly what was pictured- Wessex Brigade Classic Virginia, which does not mention cider on the tin. I found and ordered on another website the product I expected, which is Wessex Original Fragrant Virginia, on which the tin description notes the cider flavor. That product is pretty good, a Virginia and Cavendish blend, sticky, sweet, natural tasting and a bit hot burning, slightly aromatic. I contacted Smokingpipes and noted the error, but the listing hasn't changed, so I 'm submitting this review as a warning that the product listing is incorrect. If it comes back in stock and the listing is corrected, I'll edit to change to 3 stars, since the Classic Virginia is a pretty good red Virginia, but only after a year of aging.

Warped - Midsommar 2oz
Lightly Christianized pagan holiday
I would call this more of a spongey plug than a cake. Some of the visible leaves are around 3/8" wide. I had trouble tearing it, so cut it. I get a slightly sour, lightly spicy woodiness overall, and can't really taste the toppings. I found it similar to Miskatonic Mixture, though the components are different. A smoother version of MM, which I really like. I'm reading August Derleth's The Trail of Cthulhu right now, so that's likely influencing my impression, which is that MM is to Midsommar as Lovecraft is to Derleth. This goes very well with a Sazerac cocktail. I probably should have gotten more than one tin. Addendum : I tried it with a 9mm filter, and didn't like it at all. Strongly suggest not using a filter.

Caribbean Blue - Graham 50g
Burley trail mix
This is predominantly Burley, prominently nutty tasting. I can't make out the difference between the Cavendish and Virginia. The main casing is a natural tasting toasted coconut, like a coconut macaroon, but not particularly sweet. Then there's hazelnut second to the coconut.. The "cane sugar" doesn't come across as remotely dark, not even like turbino- just straight refined table sugar sweetness, but not much of it. There's a slight sourness at the first light, which might be the blackberry, and which disappears fairly quickly but then shows up again as a more floral scent, not flavor. Interestingly, that floral aspect comes back in the aftertaste. The coconut and hazelnut compliment the burley, which gets slightly astringent towards the end. Not quite medium nicotine. It's a pretty light, high-register smoke, and to me has an outdoorsy feel which makes me think of a good, unsweetened trail mix with coconut and a little bit of dried cranberry. It's not the summer smoke I was looking for. I'll come back to it this fall, when I think it would go well with a Canadian whisky.

Caribbean Blue - Bellamy 50g
Pretty good!
I wanted to try this because I was hoping for something that would be enjoyable with the heat we're all dealing with this summer. I like some variety and was tiring of the go-to Virginias, and was hoping this wouldn't be something disappointing, tasting like Laffy Taffy or worse. It's really very nice, and surprisingly natural-tasting. The banana is more of a caramelized tostones scent, not an overpowering banana candy flavor. The honeydew I also found natural tasting, mainly because it has a base-note muskiness which I don't much like and is the reason a bite or two of watermelon or cantaloupe is usually enough for me. The orange I found to be pretty much the same as in Exotic Orange (Rattray), just less pronounced. I can make out the taste of the Virginia, but not much at all of the Burley until the end, though it has a good mouth feel I associate with Burley throughout. I also found a vanilla-like hint through the whole smoke- maybe that's the cavendish? Surprisingly, I don't find much sweetness in the smoke, even with the fruity casing. It's definitely an aromatic, but isn't at all tasteless, and doesn't just taste like the casing. I think anyone who likes Exotic Orange would appreciate this. If you dislike aromatics, avoid. I'll be enjoying this for the rest of this summer, in rotation. And just as one would expect, I think it will pair nicely with rum, but haven't done that yet. I'd say the nicotine is below medium, but present.

G. L. Pease - Sixpence 2oz
Southern Comfort
The only thing I can add to the other reviews I've read, which don't mention it, is that to me the "spirit" added seems to be Southern Comfort (a whisky-flavored liqueur. ) I agree with others that it's strong on the nicotine; smaller bowls, for me.

Cornell & Diehl - Visions of Celephaïs 2oz
Had to try it
Unusual is a drastic understatement. Yes, there's grape, sort of a concord grape jelly flavor mixed with a ruby port. Then on the other side there's a malevolent cigar taste. In the middle somehow the other tobaccos hold it together. I find the DFKentucky pretty noticeable as the recurring stabilizing taste. I found myself thinking of Holst's "Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity." Also images of the Ghost of Christmas Present (the one who has the poor with him.) A really weirdly enjoyable smoke but you'd have to be in the mood for something very different. I agree with others' about the banal reek of stale cigar this leaves in my clothes. The grape, to me, isn't like the grape bubble gum flavor I found in VS Sweet Bourbon Cigars; those have an artificial grape taste that's different from the more natural but still strong flavor of this stuff. I found this to be fun, enjoyable, but one tin will likely be enough for me.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Bosun Cut Plug
Antiques and rain
Having previously underestimated Conniston, I smoked this in the smallest clay bowl I have. I didn't really get much clove; I was expecting something like a clove cigarette, and it's not at all like that. It took a while before I got ant hint of anything but tobacco. At about half the bowl the floral perfume note came out, subtly, but still primarily tobacco. Towards the end I got hints of what I associate with the smell of antique furniture. Not unpleasant, but something I don't associate with anything I'd put in my mouth. Overall a nice rainy day smoke. I prefer Conniston but this is nice.

Mac Baren - 7 Seas Black
Another reviewer- apologies, I don't remember who or where- nailed this one. Waffles. A little vanilla, breadiness, and sweetness. It's nice. But for a series called 7 seas, I was expecting adventure, excitement, exploration, maybe some rum. Waffles? Yummy, but domestic, comfortable, not what I was expecting. It's okay and does have some tobacco flavor. Might try mixing it with something else, as others have suggested.

Tampers & Tools - Tobacco Pipe Wind Cap
I only smoke in my backyard in South Florida, where there's often a good breeze. Very useful, recommended.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Kendal Flake
Sweet, earthy
This is good, but I probably won't get more. Mine was from bulk, so maybe it would have been different if tinned. I found it mainly earthy and sweet, hard to tell whether those impressions are from the tobacco or casings or both. A little floral. Better in a clay than a cob, I found. Nothing bad about it, but I much prefer Ennerdale or Conniston if I'm in the mood for a Lakeland, or Capstan for a Virginia. Didn't find any of the almond described in other reviews- maybe slightly marzipan?

Cornell & Diehl - Dreams of Kadath 2oz
PUR brand natural chewing gum has a Pomegranate Mint flavor. To me the predominant casing note is identical. I'm with Ben F's review; you have to get through the first quarter bowl before you form an opinion. This is not a polite, relaxing smoke. It seizes your attention like the choking incense of an insane and blasphemous rite which you have stumbled upon and cannot force yourself to flee.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Ennerdale Flake 50g
Good tobacco flavored smoke complemented by the casing which reminds me of the smell of blooming honeysuckle and wild rose from my childhood, as well as woody magnolia blossom. I like it as a summer smoke. Has some kick to it.

Cornell & Diehl - Innsmouth 2oz
Complex, harsh at times. Changes through the bowl. More sour than sweet. Good level of nicotine. Have not been molested by any gilled humanoids while smoking this. Maybe it works.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Kendal Black Cherry 50g
Not much tobacco flavor
This is a lot better than the Tinder Box's Anniversary I used to smoke in the 80s. Nice natural tasting chery flavor, not just aroma. What it's lacking is any significant tobacco taste. The description says the Cavendish is from a "double fermentation " process. I might have enjoyed a single fermentation more; tastes like it's had most of the tobacco flavor fermented out of it. Still a pretty good smoke, very simple, burns well, little nicotine.

Sillem's - Black 100g
Very good if you like Latakia
Around 20 years ago I asked a guy in Nashville what he was smoking. It was this. Never tried it until now. I can't find any fault with this tobacco. I get mainly Latakia with the other tobaccos in the background, with vanilla, sweetness, a d something like marshmallow. Maybe some cherry, hard to tell. I wish it was sold in a smaller tin. I probably won't buy it again, just because I'm not that fond of Latakia, but it's a very good blend.

Cornell & Diehl - Jolly Old Saint Nicholas 2oz
Wouldn't call it jolly
This is pretty good stuff. The first several bowls, I found no orange at all, just a very strong natural ginger flavor, with a pepperiness which I associate more with ginger more than perique. Scent was like gingerbread. After a couple of weeks kept in the tin, aired out a bit, the orange flavor was present and the ginger reduced. Overall very natural tasting and not very sweet. Gives me the impression of not so much jolliness, like the Santas of Rankin-Bass or Santa Clause Vs the Martians, but a more serious, working Santa, like Ernest Saves Christmas, even a surly, gruff Santa like in Elf. Natural taste, lightly aromatic, not very sweet.

Warped - Scarecrow 2oz
This is for the 2022 release. I smoked this in October and November. Tin note was clear, straightforward butterscotch, not caramel, with a hint of whiskey. Initial bowls started true to the tin note with the tobacco flavor taking over from the casing about halfway through. By the end of November the casing was less strong at the initial light and faded more quickly (I did keep it jarred, not in the can.) The butter taste was present throughout each bowl, and I was convinced it was coming from some oriental leaf, but the description doesn't mention any oriental. I never tasted anything like candy corn, more like Werther's candy with whiskey, pretty sweet to start with but less so in the second half. The tobacco is good, not too strong but strong enough to appreciate in a smaller bowl. I will most likely buy it again if it's re-released, though I still have half the cake of my first tin jarred and waiting for next Fall.

Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Coniston Cut Plug
Man enough for this?
First of all: I am not a weenie. Not a wuss. I was an adult before there was an internet. I do my own oil changes and brake jobs. That being said, I first tried this in the smallest cob I had, a MM Huck Finn, about 3 quarters full. Mistake. OMG. Made me question my manhood. Several half-bowls later over a few weeks I sealed the jar and hid it. Fantastic tasting stuff, but I like to spend 45 minutes to an hour with a pipe, and I just can't do that with this stuff. Part of any job is having the right tools. I ordered a Dutch Gouda/Caribbean Pirate clay pipe, 7" length with a thimble-sized bowl. Gave up trying to keep it lit, just took tiny sips and relit when needed. Took around 35 minutes to finish the bowl and had to sit down for the last 10. Think I've figured out how to smoke this stuff. Taste is so good it makes me want to rush it, and it requires more respect than that. So again, not a weenie, willing to fight anyone who says otherwise- just let me recover from this last bowl first.

Missouri Meerschaum - Creeper of the Corn 1.5oz
This has an interesting heavy topping which burns off after the first third of the bowl, leaving a flat, almost bland, flavor, then finishes with a nearly unpleasant ashiness. Glad I only got one tin. For the price this was a disappointment, especially compared with the Scarecrow I got at the same time for less cost and which I would purchase again if re-released. If this was the same price as Scarecrow I'd be hesitant to leave only 2 stars, but for what I paid for it, I think 2 is fair. Edit 10-18-23: I gave this another try after a year in the jar. Still very sticky, and the topping is slightly less intense. Three bowls in, I can confidently say it hasn't significantly improved. I will try it again next year, or the year after. Just sad.
    Top Summertime Smokes
  • ► With Eric and the Davids, too-
  • ► I'm with Eric, I can't make heads or tails of this update. Was it the summer weather? Got overheated? Or the blend you were smoking?