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So you talked me into it

Mike H

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If you want to stay away from the Kentucky forward blend, but nic heavy, or heavier, I would suggest, as others have, Irish Flake. Squadron Leader is good too, but hard to find, and harder to keep lit. For serious nic, HH Rustica, Tambolaka, Mammoth Cave (or any twist chew, but requires a good dry time). You can also order Nicotiana Rustica leaves from Leafonly. They are surprisingly mellow, but not very flavorful. Keep away from children and pets. If you don't like it, make a tea with the NR leaves, and spray your plants for a powerful insecticide.
 
Thank you everyone! I'm my cart right now is both Irish Flake and Mac Baron Navy Flake to be ordered very soon. Hopefully that'll do the trick. If not, it sounds like there's options out there. But I'll with my way up to Rustica.
 
I'm Currently enjoying a bowl of OJK mixed with half a flake of Bold Kentucky. Neither I'm a fan of on its own, but together they really seem to be doing the trick for now. Funny how that works out sometimes. And I figured out the first thing in the morning smokes too. Make the coffee stronger! It sounds stupid, but that extra half scoop really made the difference this morning.

In other news, this afternoon while I was out with my afternoon half a bowl, I was talking to a coworker. We turn around and see one of the younger new hires there. I asked what he needed, he said when a guy smoking a pipe is looking off into the distance and saying something, you should probably pay attention. Smart kid! Just wait until I start gesturing with it.
 
So I managed to get some Lakeland essences topped tobaccos into the USPS system heading my way. Which means a trip to my local tobacconist for a new cob for it. Along with some Erinmore and Peterson Royal Yacht. Those seem to be very polarizing blends and I'm very much looking forward to trying them. I've always been of the mindset that such polarizing things should be tried, if for no other reason than to see what the hype is about. I've tried a few aromatics (thank you Brandon!) and found their place in my rotation. But so far they have been a more American style. I'm curious to see what these will bring.

I also found a few heavy nicotine blends like Five Bros, Mac Baron Navy Flake, and Uni Flake. I'm hoping those will give me the gut punch I "need" when I need it. If it works out how I'm hoping, I'll be less inclined to wish for a cigarette. Well, I'm hoping this blends on their own will do that. The Kentucky forward blends I have take care of the hit I'm looking for, but I hope these will do that in a more pleasant manner. If not, there's always blending burley and other combinations.

This whole search for an appropriate after dinner smoke is reaffirming in one way. Moreso with pipe tobacco than any other vice I've had encourages tweaking. With all that's available and the expected YMMV, you can dial in your perfect smoke! Part of me wants to compare it to a known quantity, cooking. Of adding a dash of this and pinch of that to personalize a dish. But it's beyond that. I can add or take away almost anything I want to a beef stew and it'll still be recognizable as a beef stew. But you can really change things in the tobacco pipe. A pinch of cavendish really changes the profile of an English blend more than rosemary will effect that stew. That's something I really like about this pipe smoking journey.

I've taken I've step closer to figuring out cadence. I had that sudden realization that I'm just trying to keep the ember lit. Smoking cigarettes and cigars, I was looking for that mouthful of smoke. I think that's not quite what I'm going for here. Time to play around with that.
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
I also found a few heavy nicotine blends like Five Bros, Mac Baron Navy Flake, and Uni Flake.
Irish Flake! University Flake is lighter with a plum topping. Irish Flake is the robust one.

I'm hoping those will give me the gut punch I "need" when I need it. If it works out how I'm hoping, I'll be less inclined to wish for a cigarette. Well, I'm hoping this blends on their own will do that.
They will! It's not quite as instant, as you don't get that initial carbon monoxide and other inhaled combustion gas hit, but the nicotine that follows will surpass a cigarette for sure.

This whole search for an appropriate after dinner smoke is reaffirming in one way. Moreso with pipe tobacco than any other vice I've had encourages tweaking.
I find (now) that a medium strength blend is great as an after dinner smoke. I find the potent ones a bit too stodgy on the tastebuds for after a meal, but they're great with a drop of whisky for the quiet smoke when the hustle and bustle of the world has gone to bed. You being in a transition phase, might find you need that pipe earlier now, but that something "easier" will do the job nicely later.

I've taken I've step closer to figuring out cadence. I had that sudden realization that I'm just trying to keep the ember lit. Smoking cigarettes and cigars, I was looking for that mouthful of smoke. I think that's not quite what I'm going for here. Time to play around with that.
I know I've hit the cadence right, when the needle on the nicotine gauge says full, the gauge on my wrist says I've been smoking for half an hour, and I'm not even halfway down the pipe. The more "hungrily" I smoke, the less nicotine I seem to get.
 
Oops! Irish Flake is what I ordered though. I got myself nervous for a second. But University Flake is on my must try list.

I've yet to see much beyond taste improvement from smoking slower. When I puff too fast, it gets ashy like a gas station cigar. I haven't seen a difference yet in nic hit, but this is something I just figured out. I just realized it's not getting volumes of smoke in my mouth. Just little bits. I'm sure I'll find better, more even absorbing different things. I just know it took Carter Hall to another level.
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
University Flake is a winner for me. A good balance of Virginia and Burley, and the topping is just the right level to add to the blend, without detracting from the tobacco taste. I have two versions cooking, the current Peterson’s one, and the one from the previous blender, rebadged as Rattray's Wallace Flake.

At a certain cadence level, I don't notice the taste improving much by going even slower, but it's as if I get the same nicotine as smoking faster. So the nicotine level goes up at the same rate, but for a longer duration. Where a fast smoked bowl might leave me at 80% nicced out, smoking slower will have me hitting 80% around the same time, but with another 30+ mins of smoking still left in the bowl. Hard to describe. I hope this is making some sense. If not, it will make sense when you start finding that you might need to put the pipe down and have a little break for a while.... :)

It's not something I'm consistently able to do on purpose though, I just kind of zone in on it, or not. If I do, I'll only get halfway through, and need to let it and me cool off a while. If I don't, I'll finish that bowl in one sitting, and maybe even consider reloading it. Weird.
 
So my order came today, a day early! I'm puffing away quite contentedly on something new. Five brothers on the bottom, Five Bros mixed with EGR in the middle, and EGR on top. Right now, I'm about at the mix. The semi aromatic dramatically decreased and in its place, a strong tobacco taste that's not at all unpleasant.

So this is shag cut. I remember it being a gold plated pain in the rear trying to roll it in a paper. In a pipe, it's better behaved, but positively disappears under the tamping nail. This isn't bad, but it'll take a little bit to get packing this down. And I can really see why this was recommend for heavy nicotine content.

I'm also really looking forward to that GH #7 (thanks for the recommendation, Al). I get why some say it's soapy smelling. I get it too, but it's not unpleasant from the bag note. I haven't tried it yet because, rookie mistake, I completely forgot to toss a cob in the order. I've been sufficiently warned about the near mythical ghosting powers of this. Either tomorrow or Saturday I'll snag one and a few jars.

And then, another pic where I spread everything out on the dining room table. And then, a good post about how I really need to calm down and stop buying so much tobacco and pipes. In there will be everyone's favorite phrase (say it with me) "And this time I mean it!"

But that's later. Today I have new tobaccos to try!

Ok, I'm deep into the straight Five Bros now. Reminds me a lot of moonshine an army buddy gave me a jar of (old family recipe from the Ozarks). Pure unadulterated vice. Unapologetically unashamedly itself. But in the best possible way. I am really liking this. My first impression is this feels like it might replace the cigarette. Just the way it smokes and feels in my mouth, so far it's scratching that itch. Fills the niche in a different way. But this is first bowl impressions.
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
So this is shag cut. I remember it being a gold plated pain in the rear trying to roll it in a paper. In a pipe, it's better behaved, but positively disappears under the tamping nail.
It disappears under a flame too! Shag cuts are ridiculously easy smokes, but burn so fast! I've rolled them occasionally too, just to make it last longer. In a pipe, I find it's like smoking five times as much tobacco as a cig, in pretty much the same time. Good for the quick smokes though, when you don't have time for a "proper" smoke. Sometimes, they also taste too similar to a cig, which makes me miss them more rather than less.

And then, another pic where I spread everything out on the dining room table.
About [insert expletive of choice] time! :biggrin1:

You might need to do us a pipe pic, and a tobacco pic, as I suspect all together there'll be too much to show properly :p I think you and I are currently quite evenly matched, I think, in terms of pipes and fillers in the respective drawers.

And then, a good post about how I really need to calm down and stop buying so much tobacco and pipes. In there will be everyone's favorite phrase (say it with me) "And this time I mean it!"
Yeah yeah, we believe you. 🤣

I am there with pipes. I did a bit of online window shopping and nothing appealed to me at all. Maybe an extra bowl or two for the Falcon, but there's no rush there.

Tobacco I'm more unsettled on. Much more.

There's a very real (not just conjured up to justify excess shopping) risk of big tax hikes in early March. With Covid to pay for, a team in Westminster who already have a track record on "sin" taxes, and health of the nation in the public eye, it's a sitting duck I reckon. If I don't have one last hoorah and taxes do go up with a bang, I'll kick myself. Conversely if I do have one last hoorah, and taxes don't go up, I'll kick myself just as hard for spending funds currently set aside for "life" stuff later in the year.

Also, I've been determined to knock online shopping on the head completely, except for stuff I genuinely need, and can't get locally. I've intentionally built up a stockpile of shaving soap in the last few months for that reason. Too many missing parcels last year, and days lost waiting in. Too much data being harvested online too. I want to go back to putting cash down on a counter, getting what I need immediately, and being forgotten as soon as I walk out. I can only get pouched weighed out from bulk blends locally though, not tinned. So that one last hoorah would be one last planned order for the cellar, full stop (or period, as you folks call it). Unless I hop on a train to visit an out of town tobacconist, I won't be able to get a lot of those blends via "in person" shopping in future.

I have a few more weeks to mull it over though. In the meantime, I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the blends, particularly #7, Royal Yacht and Erinmore (the latter two I've never tried, and would be potentials for consideration if I do place one last order).
 

brandaves

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Ambassador
The G&H Dark Birds Eye is also a shag cut. It probably isn't for you Rookie as it is pretty strong Kentucky...I love it.

I'm glad to hear that you enjoy the Five Brothers. I really like it but I'm also really into straight tobacco flavors. Al has a good point about that flavor making him want a cig as opposed to replacing it. That can be a problem for some. Happy Smokes!
 
I think I might dedicate my MM Eaton to the shag cut Five Bros and keep the pouch at work. Perfect cigarette break setup.

So 3/4 of that shipment is destined for the cellar. The 2 tins of Yorktown, 4oz Va Slices, that other Pease one, and Mac Baron Navy Flake are going in for a couple years. Erinmore will stay down there as long as Royal Yacht is open. And GH #7 will go down for a couple months, maybe. That leaves Five Bros, EGR, and Irish Flake up for current rotation.

I have some sorting out to do this weekend.
 

steveclarkus

Goose Poop Connoisseur
I think I might dedicate my MM Eaton to the shag cut Five Bros and keep the pouch at work. Perfect cigarette break setup.

So 3/4 of that shipment is destined for the cellar. The 2 tins of Yorktown, 4oz Va Slices, that other Pease one, and Mac Baron Navy Flake are going in for a couple years. Erinmore will stay down there as long as Royal Yacht is open. And GH #7 will go down for a couple months, maybe. That leaves Five Bros, EGR, and Irish Flake up for current rotation.

I have some sorting out to do this weekend.
So you’re liking that Fice Brothers eh? I used to buy it by the sis pack. It fits some crazy Niche somehow. It When I wanted to sneak a cig, I would use it as a RYO. Great in a cob for a quick break for shure.
 

ChefJohnBoy-ardee

Contributor
I've craved a pipe or a cigar but never a cig. I was never a cig smoker though. And I tell myself all the time I should just go outback and have a pipe. (I miss my Jeep. I smoked cigars and pipes in that with no worries. It smelled like dust, wet dog, dead pheasant and South Dakota dust that got under and in the carpet and the state smell of cow $%^&... I was doing it a service by smoking a pipe in it!)
Alas, I drive the family vehicle. If I quick using snus I'd smoke more. :) Maybe that a plan to use up the 40# in the cellar or the 100+ish sticks in the tupperdors. Yes, good plan. Snus cravings are like the cig cravings. Its just something you're use to feeling. I should roll up coffee filters and put them up my lip. Smoke more pipes. Yes, yes. Idea good that is. (Sorry, Yoda moment. :D)

Glad you're liking the Five Brothers. I don't think I've tried that one. Maybe after I try 75% of the tins I have and never tried.
 
They put a bunch of other stuff in cigarettes, lots of additives and crap. That's why cigars and pipes don't work so well in replacing them. That's why that was never my intent. Also, the uses are different. If you're not enjoying finer tobaccos, you're doing it wrong. With a cigarette, it's a quick and dirty shot in the arm no nonsense nicotine fix and nothing more.

When I said it fit the niche for me, I meant for like an after dinner smoke, an in the car smoke, a cigarette break with the guys smoke. And in the Eaton, it's perfect for that. A full Eaton gives like 3 cigarettes nic feeling. I light it up when the tech is by his truck and talk to him about whatever work related thing. Behind the wheel advising other drivers to bend known laws of anatomy, physics, and morality. After a big heavy dinner out on the porch to aid in digestion, maybe mixed in a codger.

It's too early to tell, though. It's leaning that way, but it's too early to tell. I still have Irish Flake to try tonight.
 
I've found Five Bros superpower! It has no taste when mixed with ANYTHING. It tastes like whatever you mix it with, just punched up. To the point where I haven't even tried anything else new from my order, except for a single bowl of Stonehenge (amazing tin and room note, but the flavor is mild enough to be drowned out by a glass of ice water).

I picked up a cheapo basket pot shaped pipe so the Lakeland essences have something to ghost up. I ran a bowl of EGR last night to make sure it'll work. Yeah, that's why! This afternoon I'll give #7 a try and see what the fuss is.

Now it's a different question. This latest order was a split of cellaring Virginias and some of the polarizing blends. Erinmore, Royal Yacht, and that #7 Broken Flake. Once my jars arrive (in the mail, Mason jars are hard to find in meat space right now for some reason), GH goes into a jar for a few months. Oh, a few bowls between now and then, but most of those 2oz are getting jarred up.

So that leaves Erinmore and Royal Yacht as my kooky aromatic to smoke first and second. But which one first? I guess it really doesn't matter, I'll have both of them smoked before too long.

Funny footnote to that. My oldest daughter's name is Erin. She saw Erinmore and figured I should have bought another dozen or so tins because "more Erin still isn't enough!"
 

AimlessWanderer

Contributor
So that leaves Erinmore and Royal Yacht as my kooky aromatic to smoke first and second. But which one first? I guess it really doesn't matter, I'll have both of them smoked before too long.
That's the next dilemma I've been looking at. Which to smoke first? I want a lot of the stuff aged, so I can smoke it at it's best, which means all the ones I really want to try, are the ones that need a few year's kip. Sigh. Not that the ones I pick first won't be enjoyable, of course. I just don't want to lessen the potential of those most hyped (by me or others).

I haven't smoked any Lakelands that I've personally aged, but have noticed differences in bought rations of No.7, which I attribute to how long the drum had been sat on the shelf, effectively ageing in the shop. Yet another reason for me buying in person, as opposed to online. If they're weighing it out from the bottom of the barrel, it's likely ready to be smoked now, but if weighed out from a full drum, it might need some drawer time. I could even just ask them for "50g of something that's nearly empty, please" :biggrin1:

I think you'll like that No.7, and look forward to earing your thoughts on it.

On the Erinmore, did you get the flake or the mixture? From what I glean, the flake will age better, and the mixture will have a stronger casing flavour. That might influence how long you want to wait before setting fire to it.
 
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