Pipe Tobacco Review – Low Country Cooper

Low Country Cooper Pipe Tobacco Review

Low Country Cooper

The tin description:

The confluence of the Cooper and Ashley Rivers create Charleston Harbor, the most important port in the antebellum South. Following trade winds, goods flowed to points north and, especially, across the Atlantic to the great British ports of call. Commemorating the Cooper River’s contribution to world trade, we have selected choice Orientals and Cyprian Latakia to accent a base of fine Bright Leaf and Red Virginias to create this exceptional medium English Flake.

Inside a Tin of Low Country Cooper

Low Country Cooper is an English Flake consisting of the standard Virginia, Latakia, and Oriental leaf pressed and sliced. Cornell and Diehl provide the component tobaccos and manufacturing. The recipe itself is the creation of the folks behind Smokingpipes.com and its sister store Low Country Pipe & Cigar in South Carolina.

This English blend is brilliant for its balance as much as anything. When it comes to English blends there is really nothing new under the sun as we talk about ingredients. The blender’s expertise shines when he can balance those ingredients to create complexity and showcase the strengths of the component tobaccos and the interplay between them. That’s exactly what happened with Low Country Cooper and makes this a remarkable blend.

The “Choice Orientals” in combination with a harmonious balance of Latakia and Virginia launched Low Country Cooper to the top echelon of my list of favorite English blends.  The Orientals here are amazingly delicious. There’s a certain saltiness that makes my mouth water along with leather and herbal notes. The Cyprian Latakia is obvious but not overdone and the Virginias linger between tart and sweet.

Smoking Characteristics

The blend has body and substance without being heavy. I can and do smoke this all day or any time of day. There’s enough complexity for devoted attention to a meditative smoke while also being well behaved enough to share my focus with a book, movie, or work on the computer. This blend works well for me in a variety of roles.

The nicotine strength is, again, moderate and satisfying. I experience no tongue bite and the burning characteristics are superb straight from the tin. I have experimented with various filling methods such as folding the flake, air pocket, etc but find rubbing the flakes out works best to my personal tastes. This is the case for me with any flake tobacco so I suspect pipe smokers who prefer folding and stuffing other flakes will prefer Cooper prepared that way.

I imagine a few years age will be good for Low Country Cooper but I must stress that I have not had any older than a few months and can say a fresh tin is not to be missed. Buy some for now and buy some to cellar.

Be sure to pick up several tins – a couple to age and you’ll want to pop one right now. Cooper is available at Smokingpipes.com. Reviews on the rest of the Low Country tobaccos are coming soon. Maybe you’ll want to add those to your order as well. Spoiler: I found them all superb!

Have you smoked this blend? I’d love to hear your thoughts on it in the comments.

Burley Flake #4 by Cornell & Diehl Review

Burley Flake #4 gets most of its character from Dark Burley which brings a very straightforward, arguably strong, and robust flavor. Following in the distance are the lighter burleys, a taste of Latakia, and a touch of Red Virginia.

This is by no means a sweet blend…oh no. Those of you used to Burley flakes such as Solani Aged Burley or even Peterson’s University Flake will find something altogether different in Burley Flake #4.

Matching the stronger flavor is the stronger nicotine content. This flake will put hair on your chest and your wife or girlfriend out of the room. Go ahead and enjoy a beverage with this one, it will stand up to anything.

I am very pleased overall with this and eager to try the rest of the series, especially those featuring the Dark Burley. Those preferring to fold and stuff should find the flakes in good enough shape for some careful folding. I like these rubbed out and filled.

Old Dublin by Peterson – Pipe Tobacco Review

Old Dublin by Peterson Pipe Tobacco Review

Old Dublin by Peterson - Pipe Tobacco

This traditional mixture of the finest Latakia, Turkish oriental, and Virginia Leaf is slowburning, cool and still blended by hand.

Two thoughts struck me as I lit up my first bowl Old Dublin. The first was “wow, this is so middle of the road, but in a good way.” The second thought was “where you been all my life!” Further bowls have revealed a most pleasant English that is perfectly tolerable in every way. I think this is what I noticed when I was seeing Old Dublin in the middle. There wasn’t anything extraordinary that I had to interpret, it just tastes good – it tastes like an English blend rather than an English blend but only little more this, or like and English blend, but with a lot of that. Like the tin description says – traditional English. Old Dublin was not an attempt to reinvent the wheel.

If anything stands out it is the Orientals. They are absolutely heavenly to my taste, much like a dry white wine. I love Old Dublin after a meal whether it is breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It has this dry fragrant character. Of course, when I say dry I don’t mean the moisture content, but the taste. So, the Turkish is right up there with everything else. Latakia fanatics may be underwhelmed, but those of us who would rather the Latakia leave room for others will find the proportions a wise choice on the blender’s part. There is more tang than sweetness from the Virginias. You have to pay attention or you may miss it.

The cut is ribbon, fine to medium. Moisture was perfect from a fresh tin. The burn is perfect and a good fill is near effortless. I had no problem with tongue bite and the strength is suitable and satisfying any time of the day. If you like English and Balkans, especially in the medium range, you’ll want to try this if you haven’t already. If you have tried it, or even if you haven’t, please comment below.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

University Flake by Peterson – Video Review

Tin Description: A mild easy smoking blend of fine Virginia and Burley tobaccos, made the traditional way.

A light berry essence melds nicely with the Virginia and what I believe is likely some dark fired Kentucky Burley. Whether you crumble Peterson University Flake out or fold and stuff, I find it burns evenly enough even fresh from the tin. The Burley makes it a fairly hearty blend with a few robust moments coming throughout the smoke. I experience no tongue bite from University Flake.

Peterson University Flake has become somewhat of a classic pipe tobacco. While being unique, it also sets a standard for Virginia and Burley Flake pipe tobacco. Try smoking Peterson University Flake with the air pocket method.

Samarra by G. L. Pease – Video Review

Tin Description:

Samarra – opulent and elegant! Several varieties of Virginia tobaccos form the structure of this blend. Smoky Cyprian Latakia, fine Turkish leaf, and just a bit of Perique are added for richness. The smoke is silky and round. A subtle, yet complex sweetness from the Virginias and just a little zest is present throughout the smoke, while layers of complexity tantalize the senses from first blush to the last puff.

Blender’s comments:

Samarra, along with Cairo, Mephisto and Renaissance, was one of the first blends to be offered under the G. L. Pease brand. In a sense, it is a refinement of Sublime Porte, a blend I produced years ago for Drucquer & Sons while working there, so it reflects a much longer history than the other blends in the line.

Despite a significant percentage of Cyprus Latakia, Samarra is not a Latakia powerhouse. It is rich and complex, relying as much upon the delicate sweetness and structure of matured red Virginias, and the exotic, fragrant nature of fine oriental leaf as it does on the smoky opulence of the Cyprian “King of Flavor.” The blend is finished with a hint of zesty lemon Virginia, adding a hint of brightness to the smoke, and a touch of perique, providing its own unique spice.

I simply love this blend. When I first tried it, I was somewhat bored by it. It seemed a little ho hum at the time. No recall on what other blends I had been experimenting with at the time, but a few bowls into the first tin I was hooked. Samarra was in my pipe throughout the day. Now I have to fight the urge to hoard the stuff.

Everything is there that makes a great English blend. There’s the quality of the leaf which I rely on from Greg Pease blends. With this blend there is a deft balance between teh components. Latakia is leading the way but not making a big deal about being in charge. Virginias embrace the entire experience with a touch of natural sweetness and tang while the Turkish and Perique keep things interesting. None of these flavors are lost amongst the others.

The really cool thing about this blend is it works as one of those contemplative quiet smokes that you want to dedicate full attention to not to miss a nuance, a slight turn in flavor, or an unexpected note. At the same time, the balance, medium fullness, and perfect behavior qualify this for all-day smoking.

This is the English blend. I will be recommending this to all who ask me to suggest an English blend.

Deacon’s Downfall by Two Friends – Cornell and Diehl

Let me preface this by saying I have been very much in the mood for English blends with Perique lately. A touch of Perique does something special nested next to a portion of Latakia.

Tin Description

Dark and mysterious! Rich with Latakia, Black Cavendish, dark stoved Virginias and Perique. A bit of oriental leaf adds an exotic spice. This is a tobacco for those seeking a big, powerful flavor that isn’t harsh or overwhelming. One bowl, and you’ll know just what caused the Deacon’s Downfall!

I agree with the label – this one is not harsh, and there is a lot of flavor. For my particular tastes, too much of that flavor is the Perique.  This is not to say the partners Greg and Craig overdid the amount of Perique – I’m confident they knew exactly what they were doing and arrived at the goal they were shooting for.

This is just too much Perique for my taste. If I want something this big, I’d rather the size come from other types of tobacco.

Hopefully my comments won’t cause anyone to shy away from this blend, especially not those who love the big, bold, in-your-face English blends. My tastes lean more towards the types of blends people are always calling an “all day smoke.”

The Perique adds not only some pepper, but along with this concoction you’ll taste many of Perique’s other pungeant qualities. Less the stewed fruit and more like dried mushrooms. That along with the smokey Latakia, salty unsweetened black cavendish, and a lick of Orientals and Virginia make for a strong, assertive, masculine smoke that will stand up to the blackest coffee, a bellyfull of the hottest chili, or a few fingers of something stiff.

Give this one a try. Perique lovers most definately shouldn’t miss this one. Once the bowl settles down, a few minutes into the bowl, the Perique winds down just enough to allow your attention to drift to the rest of the blend.

Abingdon by Greg Pease – Pipe Tobacco Review With Video

This is a fantastic blend – a standard among the Balkan genre.

I note with satisfaction after reviewing Greg’s own comments on this blend that the special sweetness of Abingdon had not escaped me when I did the video review. While maybe the “fullest” in the “Classic Collection,” to my taste, Caravan by Greg Pease comes on a bit stronger.  Nonetheless, this is a blend I reserve for times I can focus my attention and enjoy it. I find Abingdon abundantly satisfying in every way – especially for the richness of flavor. This is a benchmark Balkan blend. Great pipe tobacco that shouldn’t be lost among Greg’s more recent achievements.

From Greg Pease’s web site:

Abingdon is the fullest Balkan style blend in the collection. It is rich and robust, powerful and forthright, yet still posessing subtlety and finesse. Dark flavours of wood and leather mingle with delicate undercurrents of sweetness, and deep earthy notes, while the oriental tobaccos provide hints of their verdant, sometimes herbaceous character. A big Balkan blend, reminding us once more of what these blends used to be. Because of the high percentge of dark and oriental tobaccos, it’s recommended to pack Abingdon a little less firmly than you might a lighter blend.

Odyssey by G. L. Pease

Blender’s description:

Odyssey is huge — the biggest of the Pease blends. It’s loaded with Latakia and harmonized by exotic Orientals. Wonderful red and jet-black stoved Virginias provide a perfect counterpoint.

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

Ask about this pipe tobacco on the Tamp and Puff Discussion Forum or comment on it below. If you would like to write the review, please contact me.

Haddo’s Delight by G. L. Pease

Blender’s description:

This is a stout blend consisting of several grades of Virginia tobaccos with a generous measure of long-cut perique. Unflavored Green River black Cavendish and a little air-cured white burley ribbon provide fullness, body, and a bit of extra strength. Finally, an exclusive process darkens and marries the mixture, and gives the blend a subtle tin aroma of cocoa and dried fruit. The flavor is full on the palate, earthy, slightly sweet and intriguingly piquant, with overtones of figs and raisins. A wonderful and unprecedented blend for the true perique lover!

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

Ask about this pipe tobacco on the Tamp and Puff Discussion Forum or comment on it below. If you would like to write the review, please contact me.

Cumberland by G. L. Pease

Blender’s Description:

Ripe, red Virginia tobaccos create the frame in which some truly special Kentucky dark-fired leaf is exhibited. This leaf has a depth and richness that is rarely seen in tobaccos of its type. A measure of stoved and matured flue-cured is added to provide a gentle sweetness and solidify the foundation. A little Louisiana perique provides a piquant spice, and a subtle fruitiness. The flavor may be somewhat reminiscent of some of the classic English tobaccos of the past, but this is truly a unique blend. It’s at once bold and demure, making a delightfully profound first impression, then gradually revealing its more subtle charms over a few bowls’ courtship. It’s sophisticated personality will be appreciated by those around the smoker as well.

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

No review on this pipe tobacco yet.

Ask about this pipe tobacco on the Tamp and Puff Discussion Forum or comment on it below. If you would like to write the review, please contact me.