The strongest blend in the HH line, Bold Kentucky contains a high amount of the finest dark fired Kentucky from the USA and Africa, combined with bright Virginias to soften the taste just a bit. Still earthy and smoky, the dark fired takes center stage, with a slight nuance of sweetness. It's all married in a hot press for one unique taste. Like all the other HH blends made by Mac Baren, this blend has only an absolute minimal casing and no top flavor at all.
It’s a warm Sunday evening as I await dinner. I trek into my tobacco room where I stare in glee looking over my selection awaiting something to jump out at me and say, pick me, pick me. And there it is, Mac Baren’s HH Bold Kentucky. And so, I pick up... Read More the jar, remove 4 slices and lay them out to dry for 45 minutes while I eat a hearty Italian dinner; after all it is Sunday.
The time has arrived as I fold and load 2 slices into my Sevket Meerschaum pipe. Followed by rubbing out the other 2 slices. I walk outside with my Yeti filled with ice and a small amount of apple juice. The ritual now begins. I tamp down the top and then char it for a few moments. I then tamp it down again and wait where I once again char it and tamp it down. Now, I wait about a minute and being the lighting process for a successful burn. Ahhhhhh, the smoke is voluminous and flavorful which reminds me of a wonderful barbeque.
I slow down my smoking and it was a wonderful 15 minutes. I let the pipe rest a minute or two and then relight it for serious business. The second session lasts 45 minutes where I get wonderful smokey flavor with some notes of hay, citrus and a hint of sweetness.
The second session has now concluded. I let the pipe rest for about 10-15 minutes where I scrape out the burned ashes and tamp it down. Time for a relight. The last session lasted about 30 minutes and was very strong and flavorful. This is not for beginners. If you’re a cigar smoker as I once was this will certainly remind you of the pleasure derived from a fine cigar; namely Opus X including the nic hit. All my sessions, the burn was even, smooth and full flavored.
Overall, this is a strong but yet flavorful tobacco which will surely delight the veteran connoisseur. My Sevket has a 2.75” bowl depth and about a .85 diameter so unless you’re used to this amount of tobacco, I suggest a much smaller bowl especially if you’re a neophyte. Good luck and enjoy life. Read Less
This blend is a good quality flake with a bit of drying needed from tin. Smell of tin has a savoryness about it. Flakes were rubbed out. If smoked slow a bit of hay/grass can be tasted. When big retrohale nic can be felt with a tickle of the nose. Mo... Read Morederate retrohale the savory flavor can be had just not as strong as the the tin note. This would be a blend I'd have someone start with trying to detect flavors because it not so complex. In my opinion wish this had basma instead of virginias. Good blend over all for nicotine. Post decanter up date/ palate change has made this blend great let it sit on the shelf for a while and the strong sharpness fades to smooth and earthy umami that is now dedicated to its only pipe cheers and don’t let your ember go out... Read Less
Bold indeed. Never smoked anything like it. Not for the beginner but very rich and powerful. Serious N dose. Great alone or blended with another tobacco. Easy to light, burns well and no bite. Nice smoky tin smell and enjoyable room note (for me, no... Read Moret for the wife). In my rotation !!! Read Less
Although, this is a bold, heavy blend, don’t let the name scare you off. There is no bitterness, harshness, or bite here. Tin note is very pungent and earthy. Something between black tea, and horse manure (gotcha wanting’ to try it already, eh?). I ... Read Moregave it an hour’s dry time, but don’t think it needed it. The thin dark flakes work out into almost a shag cut. Burnt well, relight after I went to refill my coffee. Sweet earthy flavor, hints of oak smoke, charcoal, then fresh out of the oven pumpernickel bread about halfway thru. I’m not real sensitive to nicotine, but I suspect this has a good dose. Not something I’d smoke every day, but a nice smoke when you want to sink your chops into something more. Read Less
When I first started smoking, my local tobacconist recommended bold Kentucky as a means to learn if I liked dark fired flavor. I never looked back. I love everything dark fired, and bold Kentucky is the embodiment of dark fired flavors. A rich, s... Read Moreavory, complex marriage of American and African dark fired tobaccos that is so smooth it's hard to believe. As far as I know the dark fired within is of a special variety that has been aged in bales for 30 years like the old dark fired blend. I could be wrong on this, but bold Kentucky is so smooth and with such a high percentage of dark fired it's hard to imagine otherwise while still retaining such high nicotine levels. When I cracked the tin on this I probably looked like a lunatic, my nose buried in the tin and hovering above the deep brown, neatly cut, moist flakes and repeatedly inhaling it's intoxicating aroma. The dark fired aroma is dominant, but as mentioned elsewhere a note of ketchup and brown sugar or molasses is detected as well. As mentioned some drying time is required, for me that's 30-45 minutes or until it doesn't clump together when pressed, and has an oily feel still. In the bowl it smokes dry, and quite well, though it does require a few relights it doesn't negative impact the flavor. I really like to load my large meerschaum pipe full to the brim and settle in for a very long and enjoyable smoke, sometimes greedily puffing and chasing those savory notes in the retrohale. For that matter I smoke all of my full flavored and strong blends in my meer when possible, and a dedicated briar for the rest as I feel it helps me detect and appreciate the subtleties that are sometimes otherwise lost in the fullness of the primary flavors. The nicotine level I would place at strong. I am highly resistant to nicotine side effects and after a large bowl I get a little light headed if I smoke it early and on an empty stomach. I would recommend a small pipe for those sensitive to nicotine, but don't let that deter you. Pack a small bowl and enjoy the rich flavor of one of the best Kentucky flakes avaliable... if not the best. If u really can't enjoy such a bold blend, I highly recommend old dark fired (I recommend it regardless ) due to its much milder demeanor and overall strength and nicotine levels, and also it's deep if not quite as deep flavor. Read Less
I bought a tin of this at Christmas because it was so highly recommended and have been trying it in various pipes for a couple months now. There are some things I really like about BK. It smells wonderful in the tin and when smoked. In the tin it has... Read More an almost beef jerky aroma; when smoked it's much like an evening campfire. But I find that it gets a bit to sour for me as it smokes down. Also, the nicotine hit for me is quite high. I just can't enjoy this straight up. I mix it 50/50 with Amphora regular or Irish Oak now. I still have over 50 grams of this left and would gladly swap it out at this point. Read Less
I give this one five stars,even though my I pad will only give me half a star tonight.Recommended after a rich meal with a cup of coffee.The flavor of the tobacco is very complimentary.Burns to a white/gray ash.I'm lighting up those ashes right now,c... Read Moreompleting last night's smoke.Don't light this up hoping for Hal O The Wynd.It just is'int like that,my smokers.The taste reminds me of Peterson's Irish Flake,But it's a lot more leathery and smoky.Try it Read Less
All i can say is WOW !!! This stuff is the best tobacco ever made by mortal man . Buy as much as you can afford you wont be sorry .
Taste is superb , burns very cool and slow , no bite what so ever ......perfection .
The high price of it keeps it f... Read Morerom being a 5 star blend for me. Read Less
It's not for nothing that Mac Baren is sometimes referred to as 'Mac Bitten'. Many blends that I've tried have started off well but didn't finish that way. Bold Kentucky is a very noticeable exception. Smoking it straight from the tin, it lights easi... Read Morely. From a light beginning, it builds to a wonderful, full, robust flavor that has no bite and is not harsh at all. (This makes it a bit dangerous, since the temptation is to smoke quickly. Don't!) Take your time and you will be rewarded with a rich, flavorful, smooth smoke that burns down to a white ash with very little dottle at the bottom of the bowl. I have tried and liked Irish Flake, but I absolutely *love* this stuff. I'll be ordering much more of this, and will be very interested to see how it ages. Read Less
I agree wholeheartedly when Mac Baren says this is their strongest tobacco to date. Very similar to the likes of their ODF but with much less of a vinegar smell from the tin and definitely more potent. A slightly sweet tobacco aroma is the tin note f... Read Moreor this one and nothing else. I smoked this fresh from the tin and although it did require a few relights, it did not smoke wet. Irish Flake has always been a favorite of mine and that is the benchmark for my comparison. I've noticed since KK no longer blends IrF, that its overall quality for me has dropped a bit. Still a good smoke, but not the same anymore. Enter HHBK. A great natural tasting tobacco with a very strong - but not harsh in any way - presence. A very full tasting, nicotine laced flake for sure. Needs to be smoked slowly and with thought or the nicotine will leave you with a lump in your chest. Same taste profile from the beginning to the end of the bowl. Nothing fancy, just good tobacco as it was meant to be smoked. If you like a good, stout and dark flake, this is the one. For me, it was Kentucky all the way as I could not detect any of the Virginia presence other than for the slight sweetness in the smoke. I enjoyed it more than ODF by the way. Kudos to MacBaren. Simply excellent and 5 starts!! Read Less
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