Arguably the most famous of Louisiana's antebellum mansions, and certainly the most immediately recognizable, Oak Alley is a splendid namesake for this cellar worthy, American standard from Cornell and Diehl. After establishing an impeccable partnership between sweet red Virginias and white/brown Burleys, discreet amounts of Perique and Katerini Turkish are added to enhance both the flavor, as well as promote the coolest smoke imaginable.
If the tobbacapocalypse were to crash down upon my head to leave me with but one blend to enjoy for all eternity, then surely this would be the one I'd choose.
I find myself constantly waxing lyrical about this blend. I'm a big fan of Cornell &... Read More Diehl and I firmly believe that Oak Alley can stand toe to toe with anything currently on the market.
It's strong to be sure - but also sweet. For me it's the perfect melange of flavour; deep, sweet matured red Virginias mix with earthy burley whilst peppery and fruity perique match up perfectly with slightly sour orientals. The crumble cakes are a delight; both aesthetically and to work with - just break of a corner and crumble.
Being from C & D's 'cellar series', it is touted to greatly improve with age. However since I first discovered the blend in May of last year, I have purchased a total of 18oz of the stuff and so far none has made it to the ageing shelf of the cellar.
Gentlemen and gentleladies, I cannot recommend it higher. Read Less
I agree with the fine reviews already posted here, and am simply adding that this blend has got me hooked - I can't NOT smoke this. After one bowl I immediately ordered a pound, which in NO WAY will make it even 1 year. So be it.
Wonderful, no nonsense blend with notes of raw wheat grain. The subtle, natural sweetness of this tobacco is outstanding. No 'added' over the top flavors are detected in this blend. I've been smoking Oak Alley for over a year, and it has yet to be... Read Morecome tiresome. Truly a beautiful, relaxing smoke. Read Less
This is a very well behaved easy to smoke tobacco. Nice flavour and satisfies every bowl. I love Briar Fox and Night Train, but I think this will replace them as my main go to blend. It's a really good smoke.
Maybe I'm new to this. Maybe I'm smoking this out of the wrong briar. Maybe my briar hasn't been broken in properly. Whatever is the case, in my pursuit of a tobacco to satisfy what I desire in flavor, this isn't it. Albeit flavorful, I suppose, I am... Read More in search for a much more deep and complex taste that intrigues and satisfies my pallete. This simply does not. Take my review with as little weight as your lightest pipe as I am surely an amateur to say the least, however, if you find yourself new to the enjoyment of tobacco by means of pipe; reserve this mixture for a period when you are more seasoned and perhaps your briar the same. I will hold this in a mason jar, lid sealed tightly until said time has elapsed. Maybe then the enjoyment spoken of in other reviews will delight me the way Oak Alley has graced them. Cheers! Read Less
Shane hit the nuances perfectly with his description. I'm not thinking the second tin will survive the aging process, I will probably crack it open as soon as the "try it" tin is finished.
Right upon cracking the tin you're greeted with... Read More a lovely aroma of VA and fermented perique. The cake slices perfectly, packs and lights flawlessly. Burns slowly and evenly all the way down leaving only a fine white ash. Burns well without ever over-heating, nor did I require a single re-light. No bite what-so-ever. Room note for me was undetectable, I have yet to ask for opinions, though even if those around me dislike the aroma, to hell with them - I will continue to smoke it.
It is simultaneously simple and complex, sweet and savory. The bowl evolves with each component at times showing itself. Though for me, the VA was always at the forefront. Very fine VA's at that.
It's rich and extremely satisfying. It is not "strong". Not harsh at all. Very smooth. It's a bold smoke, but it smokes much smoother than you'd expect. By far the best C&D that I have ever smoked. One of the best I've ever smoked period. Outside of those who strictly smoke aromatics, I would imagine most everyone would enjoy this blend. It has a little bit for all. Even the aromatic smoker should find pleasure in the orientals and sweetness of the VA.
I will be buying as much of this as my budget allows, and truly hoping, though it was meant for cellaring, that C&D offers some bulk. Read Less
Seems like C&D is famous for its burley blends. In particular, a certain kind of natural and rustic burley blend with formidable strength and a few rough edges. Think Haunted Bookshop and OJK. Oak Alley has many of the same components as those bl... Read Moreends, but it is silky smooth and exceptionally balanced. It's sweet, sour, a bit musty and floral. Seems like every time I smoke it, I find some new aspect to appreciate. It comes in the standard C&D crumble cake which is a joy to work with. It's fairly stout, packing a nicotine wallop comparable to OJK and Redburn, maybe a tick less than JackKnife Plug or Burley Flake #3. I can't recommend it enough. I'm sure it ages gracefully, but I might never know as I can't seem to leave my tins alone long enough for them to make it past childhood. Read Less
Your Oak Alley Tour Ends, You Reach Into Your Breast Pocket And...
Your wife and kids have bugged you all spring to take them on a tour of the most iconic Southern plantation, so you relent. Besides, you do like architecture and history. Once the tour ends on the front patio, and tourists stand chatting and snapping... Read More photos, and your wife is distracted getting the kids in line, you reach into your coat’s breast pocket. You extract your pipe and small tobacco pouch of C&D’s Oak Alley. You quickly pack the bowl.
“Honey—here?!” your wife says.
But before she can say more you’ve lit the bowl, sending up thin black curls of smoke from the char light. Why? Because it’s the perfect moment! You let your gaze drift over the long row of Southern live oaks and a green meadow to its side. You contemplate the dual nature of the place: both the estate’s grandeur and the pain suffered on its grounds.
I am partial to this crumble cake, and not because I’m a native Louisianan. I’ll try every C&D blend at least once, and this one impressed me with its multiple facets, or rather, layers. Yes, the tin note is not noteworthy, just that natural cigar tobacco scent with some faint sweetness mixed in. But as you work your way into the bowl, there’s the sweetness of the Virginias layered atop the stronger taste of woodsy, nutty burley. Then there’s the layer of Turkish Katerini with a dash of peppery perique brought to you by St. James Parish. Hardcore Cajun country, if you know the spot.
I easily puff this one all day, and I have. A very good blend. 4.5 stars. Read Less
Amazing blend...fresh or aged. I have smoked a couple of fresh tins, along with a tin from 2014, which was smooth and flavorful. This is another tobacco worthy of its space in your cellar! I’m excited to see what it’s like in 10+ years. I wish I had ... Read Morebought more of the 2014 stock...I only have one more from then and it is very tempting to open and enjoy it now Read Less
If you like Virginia Gentleman, you will definitely love this blend. The direction of blending is similar. Balanced aromas harmonize and form a medium full body. It is not a blend star, but is therefore superior.
Second bowl and I was hooked. The sweet red virginias really shine through. Can't imagine not having this in my rotation. Couldn't wait until I wad\s 80 yrs. old for it to peak. Is delicious right from the tin.
I recently got 2oz tin given to me, not thinking much of it (I've had some major let downs with a few C&D blends), but once I tried it i was very pleasantly surprised. One of the best made plugs I've seen, cuts well, not too moist or dry and rubs... Read More down easy. With no aging this is very in your face; Powerful but with some nice natural sweetness and citrus aromas. With age i think this could be amazing. Time to stock up the cellar!! Read Less
This was fantastic; The burley's, VA's and orientals are expertly blended and the flavors seem to meld together into one. there's a lovely sweet, nutty, slightly floral flavor, accented by a subtle pepper note from the perique. Tin note is also beaut... Read Moreiful; very fruity. It smokes smooth and cool all the way, and burns very slow. My tin was "aged" for only about 4 months, it's bound to be amazing with more age on it Read Less
Primarily a Virginia/Virginia-Perique smoker, naturally I was most intrigued by Chenet’s Cake when the Cellar Series made its debut. Oak Alley took me by surprise. It is a very complex blend that actually fills several spots in my rotation at once, a... Read Mores strange as that may seem. This is a cross-over blend for those who desire something “in-between” their usual Virginia/Perique, or Burley, or Virginia/Oriental blends. The base of Burleys and Red VA is expertly proportioned and balanced, with the Perique (more generous than you might imagine) and Katirini constantly evolving and weaving in and out of the spotlight. Plenty of strength to satisfy, this is a blend that can be as complex as you desire at any given moment during the smoke. If you are working/driving, you get a solid flavor that will not become dull. Once you focus on the smoke, layer after layer of flavor will reveal itself. Again, this may seem strange, but the flavors are at once subtle as well as robust, and will keep you guessing all the way down to the fluffy ash at the bottom of the bowl (did I mention how well the C & D crumble cakes burn?). Truly unique in the best way, I am obsessed with the tin I have open and have laid down quite a few to enjoy at various ages. I should also mention that at this time, the tins in stock at Smokingpipes.com are still from the original release and are already aged 6 months! Read Less
It took me a while to get to this blend in the cellar series. I smoked Bourbon Bleu and Bijou when they came out and I loved them, especially Bijou; but Oak Alley is even better, and I think it has to do with the harmony Reeves achieved blending the ... Read Morecomponents. This is the kind of blend you can smoke without paying much attention to it and still enjoy; but you can also sit down and smoke it slowly to appreciate the dark fruit notes of the perique and red Virginias, which are also satisfyingly bready. The Virginias play off the nutty flavors of the burley. The burley provides the blend with a nice body and depth. Every now and then the Katerini pops with floral notes that complement the rest of the tobaccos very well. I like to smoke a variety of blends, especially of VA/pers, but if I had to only smoke one tobacco, I would be glad to smoke this one for the rest of my pipe-smoking life. It pairs well with coffee, lagers and lighter IPAs. Read Less
I was intrigued by the description of this blend. After trying it many times I've concluded it is a concoction only suitable for those who love the peppery spice of strong perique and artificial smoke.
The perique is as spicy as freshly ground bl... Read Moreack pepper. It overpowers everything in this blend. However, the cigarette and artificial oak flavoring are pronounced enough to burn through the pepper to make a nasty combination that is unshakable. In spite of many attempts in various pipes, this blend disagrees with my palette on every level. If you've always wondered what it would be like to be a fireman putting out the fire eminating from a barrel of aged perique, have at it! Read Less
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