Pipe Baccy

Astley’s No. 44 Dark Virginia Flake

Tinkering with your pipe tobacco is something that occurs naturally for pipe smokers. You begin with thinking that two of your tobaccos might taste better together than apart. You build or buy a press to turn your ribbon into cake. Maybe you start burping your  jars of Virginia when you hear it speeds up the…

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Pipe Tobacco Review: Ashton’s Artisan’s Blend

Longtime readers know that this time of year, like many pipe smokers, I’ll dig through my cellar to find the smokiest blend I haven’t yet reviewed, smoke it all winter, and drop a review once the snow starts melting. Ashton Artisan’s blend is a highly regarded heavy Latakia English blend. It gets spoken in the…

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Pipe Tobacco Review: MacBaren HH Old Dark Fired

Shemp. Pete Best. Benjamin Harrison. George Lazenby. Dark Fired Kentucky. What do these all in common?  Dark Fired Kentucky is the often forgotten pipe tobacco group. I’m guilty of it myself, I’ll list out the basic food groups Aromatic, Burley, English, and Virginia. Um, oh yeah, I guess Dark Fired. In part, this is because…

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GL Pease Key Largo

Enjoying Cigar Leaf in one’s pipe is more difficult than you would expect. Everyone’s first instinct is to deconstruct a cigar, load it into your pipe, and enjoy the creamy, heavy cigar smoke with all the convenience of pipe smoking. This isn’t going to be pleasant. The burn will be wonky and the taste will…

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Boswell’s Northwood

In the heyday of pipe smoking, around 1830-1970, pipe smoking was a local experience, dominated not by large national or international tobacco conglomerates, but by your local tobacconist. These stores would source single component tobaccos which would be blended in house to serve the customer’s needs. As smoking a pipe became less and less fashionable,…

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Tip Your Tobacconist – Here’s Why!

We have all received some sort of service at cigar lounges – excellent or otherwise. The below list provides some reasons why tipping your tobacconist is a trick you should try! 1. You Relied On Their Expertise Did your tobacconist help you find a great smoke today? Tip them! Did your tobacconist check in on…

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Pipe Tobacco Review: Dan Bill Bailey’s Balkan Can’t Be Beat

Though I became a pipe smoker in 2014, it wasn’t until two years later I found myself in a real pipe store, Iwan Ries in the midst of Downtown Chicago. It’s a beautiful store, full of warm wood and delightful aromas. I was served by a dapper gentleman who was a devoted smoker himself. He…

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Pipe Tobacco Review: Erik Stokkebye 4th Generation Evening Flake is Great “Factory Fresh”

When McClelland closed its doors in 2017, there were numerous blends that became objects of veneration, from their annual Christmas Cheer release to the Frog Morton line, to their incomparable oriental blends. What was lost with little fanfare was their bulk blend #2015, Virginia-Perqiue, aka VaPer Flake. This humble offering combined the illustrious McClelland Virginias…

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Pipe Tobacco Review: Rattray’s Exotic Orange Delivers Both Flavor and Aroma

Despite their image as what pipe tobacco is in popular culture, aromatic blends are among the most troublesome and divisive categories of blends. The primary issue is the inconsistency between smell and taste. These tobaccos smell rich and sweet, infused with the aromas of confectionery. But for most smokers, in most pipes, most aromatics taste…

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Samuel Gawith Skiff Mixture

English pipe tobacco has an incredible depth and breadth. There are smoky Latakia-driven monsters like Esoterica’s legendary Penzance, C&D Star of the East Flake, and Hearth & Home  10 to Midnight. There are tamer, more balanced blends like Presbyterian, Peterson 965, Samuel Gawith Squadron Leader, and Peter Stokkebye’s Proper English. The spicy English is a…

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