Cornell & Diehl - Sun Bear 2oz
I’m not a big fan of Virginias and haven’t experimented with orientals really at all, but I bought this on a whim. It’s a broken flake, and the tin note smells delicious with honey and a faint whiff of tequila. I wish the tequila would’ve been more robust than silver, a nice reposado or añejo with more flavor. The grassy notes and the honey were pleasant to sip, and the zesty spiciness of the orientals were interesting. I’m curious to see what aging will do to the blend.
Cornell & Diehl - Canal Boat 2oz
Simple and Worthwhile
A simple blend of finely cut burley, black cavendish, and smoky Latakia. I would almost call it an English blend if not for the absence of Virginia. The missing Virginia and the cut of the burley is the one this separating Canal Boat from C&D Americana, which I would say is slightly better than Canal Boat with its extra layer of complexity. But this is still a fantastic blend!
Drew Estate - Kentucky Fire Cured Sweets Ponies
Smells like delicious Kentucky dark fired pipe tobacco! Tastes delicious, like a good barbecue with a good sweet tip.
Solani - Aged Burley Flake - 656 50g
Cream of the Crop
This is it. Perfectly formed flakes of white and dark burley. This burns perfectly and relatively quickly to ashes, but doesn’t bite your tongue. It has that exquisite burley flavor profile I love so much and the prickles of heavy nicotine. The taste is brown sugar, cocoa, nuts, and anise, like a very refined exceptional Sir Walter Raleigh, and the tin note is cocoa. The room note is like baked goods and dark fruit like plums. I was smoking this in my garage, and when my wife came in she said it smelled like I was cooking raisin bread. Ladies and gentlemen, this is the best tobacco I’ve ever smoked, my new favorite. I’m a lover of burley above all other types of tobacco, and this is a the cream of the crop.
Lane Limited - BL/WB
I’m such a massive fan of Sir Walter Raleigh. It’s my favorite tobacco blend. This offering from Lane, BL/WB, has the similar granola cut as well as that delicious brown sugar and licorice flavor. It’s a very close match to SWR.
Lane Limited - BCA
Sweet Splendid Smoke
A pure simple black cavendish, mellow and smooth. I love it on its own and as an additive to other blends.
Cornell & Diehl - Pirate Kake 2oz
Smoky Smoking Smoke
I’ll taste Latakia for awhile after smoking this, but that’s not to say it’s an unpleasant smoke. The burley and orientals are lost in the sea of Latakia, but I suppose they temper that robust smoke to remind you that you aren’t smoking a bowl of straight Latakia. I love the campfire smokiness of English blends but Pirate Kake is nearly too heavy with it and too narrowly focused. It’s almost a single note experience. I’ll stick to Mountain Camp and Star of the East.
Cornell & Diehl - Star of the East Flake 2oz
This broken flake version of the original Star of the East, is slightly better because I like to handle the chunks more than the ribbon. A robust and complex experience of bold smoky Latakia and spicy nuanced orientals. This is a swell smoking experience. One of my go-to’s when I want a break from my usuals!
Cornell & Diehl - Star of the East 2oz
Such a rich deep smoking experience! Heavy with smoky Latakia and spicy orientals, it burned wonderfully and hit all the right notes for me. Absolutely a staple in my smoking regimen when I want a break from my beloved burley.
Cornell & Diehl - Espresso
As it is now, the aromas and flavors are very subtle and the blend is very wet and oily. I’m hoping it’ll get better with a little aging in a mason jar.
Cornell & Diehl - Dark Chocolate
A great smooth black cavendish with a wonderful rich chocolate tin note. It comes quite wet, but it dries out just fine. I was very pleasantly surprised to discover the room note and the taste to be equally heavy with chocolate! I could see this getting even better with some burley thrown in for good measure!
Cornell & Diehl - Dark Cherry Cavendish
On its own, this blend is pretty bland, and even the tin note is subtle. I like to combine it with C&D Dark Chocolate for a great smoke!
Cornell & Diehl - Mountain Camp 2oz
Mountain Camp is very Latakia-forward but not at all overwhelming. The spiciness of the Perique is barely discernible, but there’s enough to create an interesting nuance. I typically smoke American burley blends in lieu of English blends, but Mountain Camp is my favorite English and one of my new favorite blends out of all families of tobacco, likely because of the inclusion of plenty of burley! It’s complex but very smooth and silky, almost like smoking a straight black cavendish. The room note is the smell of a campfire, so much so that you can almost hear the skillet full of bacon or trout sizzling. A new favorite.
Cornell & Diehl - Americana 2oz
What a unique blend! Such a good surprise! The smoky Latakia is tempered by the burley, black cavendish, and Virginia. Right away I was struck with a sense of nostalgia somehow, which I know is tacky considering the name of the blend. But nonetheless, echoes of camping came to me, and the aroma and taste of chestnuts over an open fire. There was a faint sweetness and nuttiness. Americana was pleasantly mild and smooth, but there was enough going on to keep the blend active. This was a completely pleasurable smoke and is definitely one of new favorites!
Cornell & Diehl - Pegasus 2oz
Expected a Bit More
Pegasus has a faint room note. It’s dry and burns well, quickly to ash, with no dottle. However, there’s not a lot of flavor to the blend, though the Virginia is somewhat evident. The black cavendish is very much in background and really has nothing to offer to the blend. I’m a fan of good American burley blends, and savor the nuttiness and caramel/cocoa notes inherent in them, but Pegasus unfortunately lacks those burley flavors. It harkens to Carter Hall or Prince Albert, so fans of those OTC blends should also be fans of Pegasus. I’ll stick with my Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Walter Raleigh Aromatic. I even prefer Half and Half over this I believe.
Sir Walter Raleigh - Aromatic 12oz
Absolute Perfect Smoke
Sir Walter Raleigh Regular is my go-to blend, my favorite tobacco, but after my first smoke of Sir Walter Raleigh Aromatic, I can safely say that this surpasses it. Right off the bat, the shag cut is great for packing a pipe and it burns exquisitely. The aroma of liqueurs is evident, along with the anise-brown sugar of the traditional SWR, and the caramel nuttiness of the good American burley. The taste was full of the caramel, honey, and brown sugar initially, and then the flavors of the liqueurs came on. It was absolutely perfect, a stunningly good smoke. Also, when I’ve smoked this around others they commented on a chocolate/caramel aroma. This is my new favorite blend, hands down. It’s especially perfect with a couple fingers of bourbon at the ready.
Smoker's Pride - Vanilla Cavendish 12oz
I’m a big fan of Smokers Pride Cherry, so I suppose I had high hopes for the Vanilla, considering it’s their most popular of the Smokers Pride blends. The aroma of the bag wasn’t vanilla-scented at all and had an aroma more akin to animal feed. I was hoping the taste and room note would redeem the blend, but I was sorely mistaken. Completely bland. I’m shocked really. Maybe my bag was bad or something?
Carter Hall - Carter Hall 1.5oz Pouch
This isn’t a bad codger blend, but it’s not among the greats. It burns cool and smokes easy but had no flavor or nuance, not even a slight nuttiness from the burley. I’ll definitely stick to my beloved Sir Walter Raleigh!
Sir Walter Raleigh - Regular 1.5oz
Simplicity in a Smoke
“Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” When Thoreau wrote those three words in “Walden”, he could’ve been speaking of Sir Walter Raleigh regular. I gave SWR a lesser review when I first smoked, but as time progressed and I smoked more of it, I had to improve my review. And then I had to improve it even more later on. This old All-American burley codger blend is slightly sour initially with subtle hints of complexity over a very basic burley blend. The cut makes it easy to light and burn without relights. Over time I’ve realized that the complexity I detected initially is an anise note. Further smoking also brought a brown sugar taste, especially deeper in the bowl. Additionally, it’s a very smooth and silky smoke for me, almost as much as a straight black cavendish. This is a pleasing simple tobacco, and there isn’t a thing wrong with that. This is my morning smoke!
Prince Albert - Prince Albert 1.5oz
I was excited to smoke Prince Albert as I’ve drifted back to an appreciation of American burley and codger blends. My great grandfather smoked Prince Albert in his pipes and he rolled it in his cigarettes. This is a very mild and basic blend, which isn’t bad at all, but I was not really a fan of its tin note and I was disappointed with the lack of burley nuttiness and caramel notes. There was a subtle nuance of chocolate which was pleasant and for that reason and the nostalgia of this blend for me personally, I place Prince Albert slightly above Carter Hall, but I place it below Half and Half and well below my favorites, Sir Walter Raleigh, Sir Walter Raleigh Aromatic, and Smokers Pride Cherry.
Smoker's Pride - Cherry Cavendish 12oz
The Beginning of My Journey
Mmmmm! Delicious cherry/cream smell and taste!! Okay, here’s the deal. I know this is an incredibly cheap over-the-counter blend, and I know there’s other cherry blends out there that are higher quality. But this was the first pipe tobacco I ever owned, and when I smell it and taste its smoke I am filled with nostalgia and can’t help but smile and ponder this pipesmoking journey I’ve been on. I got my first pipe and a big bag of Smokers Pride cherry cavendish right before I deployed to the Middle East when I was in the US Army. Every day I smoked this tobacco when I could grab some time to do so under the hot Persian sun. This tobacco (and the peaceful rituals associated with smoking a pipe) helped me when I was deployed. So, Smokers Pride Cherry Cavendish will always hold a special place in my heart and in my pipe.
Captain Black - Grape 1.5oz
The Grape Gatsby
Wow! This was a very interesting experience. The aroma of grape was intense before lighting, very reminiscent of grape-flavored candy, gum, or pop. The taste was much less bold after lighting. I didn’t enjoy the film that coated the inside of my mouth when I started smoking.
Peterson - Irish Cask 50g
Spicy and Complex
Oddly, this was one of the first tobacco blends I ever bought and I smoked it exclusively for years. It’s a complex blend and has a spicy taste with a hint of sourness. Always an enjoyable smoke!
Half and Half - Half and Half 1.5oz
Unique Codger Blend
A simple and no-nonsense codger blend. I initially found it bland and relatively flavorless, but after developing a strong fondness for Sir Walter Raleigh, I decided to give this OTC another go. It’s very burley-forward, which is a good thing and provides the caramel nuttiness I love so much about burley. The Virginia is extremely on the back burner and serves only to make the blend burn a little too hot at times. There’s a spice flavor like fennel and coriander in the smell and taste as well that I found very pleasant and different. In closing, I still very much prefer Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Walter Raleigh Aromatic, but Half and Half is a delicious option to break up the monotony every once and a while.
Sutliff - B20 - Black Cavendish
One the smoothest and mellowest smokes possible. A great all-day blend on its own, but also a wonderful additive for blending.
Cornell & Diehl - Latakia
The pure scent of charcoal and smoke. This would be gnarly on its own, but it’s one of the ultimate blenders.
Mac Baren - HH Old Dark Fired Ready Rubbed
Earthy Barbecue Bliss
One of the absolute best smokes out there. Richness, smoke, barbecued meat, leather, bacon. So many strange and delicious notes! Combine this with Latakia and some plain black cavendish to mellow, and you have the ultimate blend.
Cornell & Diehl - Seersucker 2oz
Mild and Odd
I assume I’ll write a new review of this Plug in a few years. But as it stands now, I’m not too impressed. It was wet, not pressed too good, very mild and rather flavorless, and had a very strange smell. I understand the intent is to age this for several years, so I’m going to give that a shot and see if it improves.
G. L. Pease - JackKnife Plug 2oz
As soon as I opened the tin with this plug to put it in a jar, I was enveloped in the delicious aromas of smoke, spice, and sweetness. It was a heavy rich scent, almost like barbecued meat. It had a smoky complex taste that I loved. Jack Knife Plug just moved up my “favorites” list. It’s a strong blend so be sure to smoke on a full belly! My only real criticism is that it doesn’t burn all that great off the plug, and takes a lot of relighting.
Solani - Tropical Mango Flake-639 50g
Great Burn, Average Taste
I dried this flake for a couple days, and it lit and burned like a dream. No relighting needed. It had a sweet raisin aroma in the tin, but it had very little to no flavor. Still a pleasant smoke and I liked the flake cut of this.
Sutliff - Tobacco Galleria: Midnight Smoke
Simple, Mellow, and Pleasant
Great for blending, but also a thoroughly enjoyable smoke on its own! Mellow and slightly sweet, it’s a very light smoke suitable for anytime of day.
Sutliff - J4 - Burley
Earthy and Good
This pure burley is my go-to for blending, but it also stands on its own. It’s add a great flavor and dimension to every blend. I’m not a huge fan of its ribbon cut, but the aroma out of the bag is mouthwatering with hints of caramel and nuts. It has a great smell and retains its nuttiness whilst lit. A good simple smoke.
Sutliff - Black Raspberry
Sweet Subtle Berry
I bought this black cavendish for a blender, but it’s an absolutely exquisite smoke on its own too. Unlit, the smell of raspberry was bold and delicious. Once lit, it burns cool but thoroughly. Like all black cavendish, it’s a light and mellow smoke. There was a slight berry room note, and a subtle sweetness. A great morning smoke and nightcap! Easily one of my favorites!
Orlik - Golden Sliced 50g
A pleasant affordable Virginia blend. It burns hot and has a crisp, grassy, bready flavor. This is a blend I use to break up the monotony of my usual go-to burley blends. Gets better with age.
Gawith Hoggarth & Co. - Cherry Cream Flake
This aromatic is a sweet Virginia blend. It was good, burned reasonably well. But I’ll definitely age it a bit. The cherry aroma prior to smoking was subtle but present, but after I lit up there was no hint of cherry, just some burning Virginia leaf. This was a decent (if bland) aromatic. I must say, however, I’m definitely not a fan of Lakeland essence. It unfortunately has a vomit aroma to me.
Brebbia - Allegro Mixture #24 50g
Raisin and Spice
A light aromatic with a raisin/prune scent. Allegro is a tasty easy smoke. After drying it, there’s a strong cigarette smell that somewhat diminishes the spice/fruit aroma. Enjoy it slow to avoid burning your tongue.