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Burley

Been dabbling with pipe smoking for about 4 years now. Have read and learned alot from the BL in all manner and things of the pipe. But Burley tobacco still has me puzzled. I can't seem to get Burley figured out. My first experience with Burley of course, came with the right of passage blend that all new pipe smokers come across or start out with Carter Hall.

I have had it fresh and aged several years, but the cigarette taste from the Burley forward blend never got better, even with a few years of age. I just don't enjoy it. Which confuses me, because I'm now on my second tub of H&H's Chatham Manor which is also described as a Burley forward Burley/Virginia blend very close in likeness to Carter Hall and I can't seem to get enough of it fresh, I like it so much I can't keep enough to age.

Another virginia/ burley blend is Missouri Meerschaums, "Missouri Pride." Bought a pouch of this when I first started and it seemed kinda harsh, so I put it up for two years and it turned into an absolute wonderful smoke. In fact, I just finished off the last bowl of it a week ago, so decided to open up a jar of another Virginia/Burley blend Peterson's Irish Dew.

Got a pouch of it 3 years ago and it was awful. So, jarred up the rest of it and just opened it a couple of days ago after three years of aging. While it wasn't awful anymore, it still wasn't very good to my palate. No chocolate or nuttiness that was described, picked up by my taste buds, just bitter, harsh cigarette notes.

I just don't get how simple, virginia/burley blends can be so different? I have read about "white burley's" are there different kinds and type of Burley's that taste different from one another? I just don't understand. I can smoke English's where a little Burley really smooths out the blend and makes it taste wonderful, why am I having trouble with Burley and Virginia blends?
 

oc_in_fw

Contributor
Been dabbling with pipe smoking for about 4 years now. Have read and learned alot from the BL in all manner and things of the pipe. But Burley tobacco still has me puzzled. I can't seem to get Burley figured out. My first experience with Burley of course, came with the right of passage blend that all new pipe smokers come across or start out with Carter Hall.

I have had it fresh and aged several years, but the cigarette taste from the Burley forward blend never got better, even with a few years of age. I just don't enjoy it. Which confuses me, because I'm now on my second tub of H&H's Chatham Manor which is also described as a Burley forward Burley/Virginia blend very close in likeness to Carter Hall and I can't seem to get enough of it fresh, I like it so much I can't keep enough to age.

Another virginia/ burley blend is Missouri Meerschaums, "Missouri Pride." Bought a pouch of this when I first started and it seemed kinda harsh, so I put it up for two years and it turned into an absolute wonderful smoke. In fact, I just finished off the last bowl of it a week ago, so decided to open up a jar of another Virginia/Burley blend Peterson's Irish Dew.

Got a pouch of it 3 years ago and it was awful. So, jarred up the rest of it and just opened it a couple of days ago after three years of aging. While it wasn't awful anymore, it still wasn't very good to my palate. No chocolate or nuttiness that was described, picked up by my taste buds, just bitter, harsh cigarette notes.

I just don't get how simple, virginia/burley blends can be so different? I have read about "white burley's" are there different kinds and type of Burley's that taste different from one another? I just don't understand. I can smoke English's where a little Burley really smooths out the blend and makes it taste wonderful, why am I having trouble with Burley and Virginia blends?
Have you tried Solani Aged Burley Flake (very good, hard to get) or MacBaren HH Burley Flake?
 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
Moderator Emeritus
Virginia and Burley are the predominant tobacco used to make cigarettes so it’s not surprising a lightly topped blend would remind you of cigarettes. Blends like Solani ABF, HH Burley Flake and OTFs are flavored vs blends like Haunted Bookshop, Briar Fox, etc. I smoked some Jupiter Slices, a straight Va with a friend and he said it smelled straight up like a cigarette.
There are so many great blends out there that not liking VaBur’s is a pretty minor thing I think. At the same time I get a lot of satisfaction from the VaBurs that it *might* be worth the pain and agony to smoke a bunch to see if you eventually find them agreeable.
 

simon1

Self Ignored by Vista
Being as this is subjective, and tastes can change rapidly, you might try some of this, if you haven't already, and see what you think. I like it...I think I'll have a bowl in a bit.

 
Burley really don’t improve that much with age like a Virginia tobacco will. While it may mellow some, it simply doesn’t have the necessary sugars to help improve the taste with age like a straight Virginia or Va-Per blend. Uhle Tobacco in Milwaukee always had some of the best burley blends, and I assume they still do. Last I bought they were still blending everything in house from decades old recipes. I have been away from the pipe, for the most part over the past few years.

 

Kentos

Wiped out at 25
Moderator Emeritus
Burley really don’t improve that much with age like a Virginia tobacco will. While it may mellow some, it simply doesn’t have the necessary sugars to help improve the taste with age like a straight Virginia or Va-Per blend. Uhle Tobacco in Milwaukee always had some of the best burley blends, and I assume they still do. I have been away from the pipe, for the most part over the past few years.

The magic for me is when it is blended with a Va and some Perique. Old Joe Krantz comes to mind.
 

ChefJohnBoy-ardee

Contributor
Some days a burley blend will sing for me. Most days it doesn't do much for me. Quite a pity as when they sing, they are really tasty! I don't know why.
 
Virginia and Burley are the predominant tobacco used to make cigarettes so it’s not surprising a lightly topped blend would remind you of cigarettes. Blends like Solani ABF, HH Burley Flake and OTFs are flavored vs blends like Haunted Bookshop, Briar Fox, etc. I smoked some Jupiter Slices, a straight Va with a friend and he said it smelled straight up like a cigarette.
There are so many great blends out there that not liking VaBur’s is a pretty minor thing I think. At the same time I get a lot of satisfaction from the VaBurs that it *might* be worth the pain and agony to smoke a bunch to see if you eventually find them agreeable.
Good advice. When I first picked up the pipe, I took to English blends like a duck to water, but it took awhile to develop my palate for VaPers. There was definitely a bit of time with some ups and downs, but I really enjoy a good VaPer now, as long as the Perique isn’t too dominant in the blend.

Now, I’m hoping to develop my palate with VaBers. So far, Chatham Manor and Missouri Pride, good. Carter Hall and Peterson’s Irish Dew, bad.

So Solani and HH are good suggestions, are there any others that won’t taste like cigarettes?
 

oc_in_fw

Contributor
Good advice. When I first picked up the pipe, I took to English blends like a duck to water, but it took awhile to develop my palate for VaPers. There was definitely a bit of time with some ups and downs, but I really enjoy a good VaPer now, as long as the Perique isn’t too dominant in the blend.

Now, I’m hoping to develop my palate with VaBers. So far, Chatham Manor and Missouri Pride, good. Carter Hall and Peterson’s Irish Dew, bad.

So Solani and HH are good suggestions, are there any others that won’t taste like cigarettes?
I was the same, except instead of learning to love VA-Pers (still can’t stand Perique), I have learned how great VA’s and VA-burs are. Flakes that are folded and stuffed got me there.
 
My current favorite burley blend is Watch City Cigar Deluxe Crumb Cut. This blend borders on aromatic but in a great way. Ernie Q. is a maser blender who knows how to bring out the best in the tobaccos. This blend gets four stars from the taste wizards at tobaccoreviews.com, for what that’s worth.
 
To answer your question, yes, there are different types of Burley. White, which is nutty, chocolate less strength and body compared to Dark Burley. Dark which is spicy and fuller bodied. This is a quick overview, more info can be added.
 
The magic for me is when it is blended with a Va and some Perique. Old Joe Krantz comes to mind.
I was going to suggest the same. I have significantly less experience then you and don't get a cigarette taste from Carter Hall (although I've never been a cigarette smoker which may be another factor). I love Carter Hall and I really get the chocolate and nutty flavors coming through. I find Chatham Manor is good, but I don't see it as a substitute for Carter Hall even though it is marketed as such. Chatham Manor is more sweet then Carter Hall for me. I'm not sure if it is more heavily cased or has a higher Virginia to Burley ratio but they are just different. I think Ken probably has the idea for the best burley indoctrination of Old Joe Krantz. I'll add Haunted Bookshop to that as well. Those blends are very similar to my pallet and both are excellent for me.
 
I was going to suggest the same. I have significantly less experience then you and don't get a cigarette taste from Carter Hall (although I've never been a cigarette smoker which may be another factor). I love Carter Hall and I really get the chocolate and nutty flavors coming through. I find Chatham Manor is good, but I don't see it as a substitute for Carter Hall even though it is marketed as such. Chatham Manor is more sweet then Carter Hall for me. I'm not sure if it is more heavily cased or has a higher Virginia to Burley ratio but they are just different. I think Ken probably has the idea for the best burley indoctrination of Old Joe Krantz. I'll add Haunted Bookshop to that as well. Those blends are very similar to my pallet and both are excellent for me.
Good post. It show how different individual tastes are for sure. While I have never smoked cigarettes, I have tried cigarettes and I get the same flavor and bite from Carter Hall, while I love Chatham Manor. CM is definitely sweeter then CH to me also, but I think the descriptions for both are Burley forward, Burley/Virginia blends. I have had and like VaPers, but I have yet to try a Vir/Bur with Perique I think.

I have a few other vir/bur blends and an all Burley coming in. The experimenting continues. :)
 

ChefJohnBoy-ardee

Contributor
Good post. It show how different individual tastes are for sure. While I have never smoked cigarettes, I have tried cigarettes and I get the same flavor and bite from Carter Hall, while I love Chatham Manor. CM is definitely sweeter then CH to me also, but I think the descriptions for both are Burley forward, Burley/Virginia blends. I have had and like VaPers, but I have yet to try a Vir/Bur with Perique I think.

I have a few other vir/bur blends and an all Burley coming in. The experimenting continues. :)
I've got some Pegaus, Three Friars and Haunted Bookshop I can send you if you have a Brown Leaf badge. ;)

Something else I should add to my first post that I forgot about is that I enjoy a few of the Burley Flakes from CD, at least #5 but that has Dark Fired in it. I also like LJ Peretti's 333 and CD Crooner. Both with a lot of burley...
 
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