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A question for the pipe smokers amongst us!

Discussion in 'Other Chatter' started by Hammock Hamster, Mar 31, 2018.

  1. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Full Member

    Nov 24, 2014
    Likes Received:
    McBride, BC
    Please! No more dangling the bait in front of my nose. Please.
    I still have moments when I feel the need to smoke 18 cigarettes and 2 bowls.
    I smoked a pipe working a shrimper but quitting was the hardest job I ever did.
  2. Man of Tanith


    Jan 14, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Potton, Bedfordshire or alternatively my own happy
    St Bruno is a seriously under rated tobacco in my opinion. took me a little while to grasp that but its a good "standard"
    i usually buy from the reborn GQtobacco online (No longer Glynn but the new chap is keepin the standards he set) or i go to Harrison and Simmonds in Bedford where ive shopped since i was 17.
    last time i went in after a few months i was greeted by name, had my hand shook by all the staff, nattered about their family and mine, chatted about tobaccos,jarring as cellering vs leaving in tin, discussed Dunhill tobaccos (no longer being made but similar clones now being released) left after 20mins feein like i had visited friends rather than a shop
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    GQ is usually my first stop if looking online - good prices, good range, and they do the mail order thing very well. My Smoking Shop is another I use occasionally. Used to buy quite a bit from Smoke King, but not recently (for no particular reason, although I was less than pleased when they stopped stocking Germain's tobaccos due to supply issues with Special Latakia Flake about 3 years ago). I do like to pop into the local B&M, though, not least because it's not too far from where I work, and I can sniff the loose baccies before I decide to buy. Not quite on first name terms, but my face was recognised when i was in yesterday to stock up on Peterson's Perfect Plug and get a pouch of Germains Rich Dark Flake to try.

    I like the PPP - I went through a phase of trying various plugs, liked Warrior and then found it had been discontinued when I went to get more, so tried PPP and reckon it's pretty similar. Also tried some of the unflavoured (or no more than Lakeland) Gawith plugs, which were interesting, but not quite what I was after. That being: generally dark and mellow, flavoursome but not too strong tasting, and not leaning too much towards Virginia. Also wanted something pretty dense that would be resistant to drying out, meaning it would last well (in a resealable bag) in a pouch.

    After one bowl so far, the Rich Dark Flake seems pretty good - dark and earthy, slightly piquant at times, cool burn. Comes in actual flakes (unlike SLF), which are long, wide and thin, probably enough for two average bowls per flake. Moisture was about right, and it rubbed out pretty easily (although not quite as easily as St Bruno Flake).

    On cellaring, if it comes in a vacuum sealed tin, I leave it in the tin, otherwise, it goes into a screw-top Kilner jar. Once a tin is opened, the baccy gets jarred. The little 250ml jars comfortably take 50g of ready rubbed / ribbon cut. The big bail top jars also seal pretty well, but they have a lot more volume, so a lot more air around the baccy. I used those at first, and found that the baccy had dried out in a few cases, while the screw-tops seem to be bomb proof.
  4. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    A wee update...

    Rich Dark Flake is a definite keeper for me. Delicious stuff. Turns out that it's (almost) the same as Esoterica Stonehaven. Esoterica Tobacciana is a brand that Germain's make for a distributor to the US who have some sort of exclusivity agreement. So far as I'm aware, there are some ingredients that aren't allowed in the EU (additives like moisture control stuff), so the RDF version is basically made without these, and maybe with a slight tweak to the components or the specific proportions.

    More recently, Germain's have introduced a new blend called 1820 Flake. This is not a flake version of their ribbon cut 1820 Mixture, but a different blend that bears the 1820 moniker (the year Germain's was established). From the horse's mouth, 1820 Flake is basically Esoterica Penzance for the UK market, with the aforementioned exclusions and/or adjustments to keep it legal for the EU and not fall foul of their exclusivity agreement with the Esoterica importer in the US. For those that aren't aware, Penzance is the stuff of legend - online pipe communities are littered with stories of people waiting weeks or months for it to come into stock, only for it to vanish within a few hours.

    I've seen a couple of videos where people have compared them side by side (some in the UK have managed to get some Penzance sent over from the US), and they do report some very subtle differences, but both have pointed out that their 1820 is fresh while their Penzance has some age on it (around a couple of years). The conclusion seems to that it's very, very close, and as close as it's ever likely to get in the UK.

    I got some to try, and it's excellent. It's near enough an English, leaning towards a dark base with spicy orientals and Latakia. I like Latakia, so I can't say whether it's a Lat bomb (I don't think it is), but I think you'd probably need to like Latakia to enjoy it. It's another Germain's comedy flake, where, instead of a stack of flakes, you get a mix of flaky bits and broken bits. When I filled the first bowl, I thought the fine stuff was going to result in reduced draw, but it actually smoked just fine (and has on subsequent bowls as well). Well worth trying, if only to get an idea of what the fabled Penzance is like.
    Macaroon likes this.

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