G.L. Pease Meridian
    June 5th, 2018

Kyle Weiss
I haven’t written in some time about a Pease tobacco and since I have a lack of new smoking-things piquing my interest lately, I’m going back to things I know and things I know I like. Meridian, a GL Pease mixture, falls into this category. It is often misunderstood for reasons two: being boring when it is in fact subtle, and fools arguing about it not being a “true English” because it isn’t caked with a crap-ton of Latakia. I have described it in the past as Pease’s tobacco-attempt at singing Barry White when he’s normally busy conducting Wagner or Tchaikovsky. Critics and fans alike often don’t know what to do when chart-topping hits aren’t in line with the status quo, and a finished piece in that sense often says more about the hand of the creator than the creation. Meridian is exactly this in my world.

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Orlik Golden Sliced
    May 14th, 2018

Kyle Weiss
Pipe smoking has a way of stirring up the past, sometimes emotionally, sometimes directly. Lately I’ve been figuring out a lot of what means something to me versus what does not, as it’s been a trying last few months. Tobacco is, unscientifically, a form of patience grown in the sun, harvested, cured and treated in various ways, and released when we set it ablaze. Poetry isn’t my strong suit, but memory is.

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Mac Baren Virginia No. 1
    April 3rd, 2018

Kyle Weiss
Mac Baren: simply mentioning the name sends guys into hyperbolic fits. Lengthy tales of warning then get uttered, especially to newcomers, like talking about a dangerous, abandoned house with a vengeful spirit inside. Other guys sheepishly shrug and say they like the stuff. Mac Baren has a lot of aromatics in their lineup, and not surprisingly considering how the Danes feel about their sweet tobaccos. Needless to say, when I first started my relationship with the briar, well-meaning fellas were giving me all sorts of tins to try. It was a test of grace, as I found myself less and less enamored with aromatics (and aromatic-loving guys think everyone smokes aromatics) I realized at times I was the recipient of the “I hate this stuff, you smoke it,” re-gifting kindness that’s bound to happen. I’ve mostly learned enough manners to say “Thank you,” or “No thank you.”

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Kyle Weiss
With the weather flip-flopping across the country as it has, I’ve had a hard time finding a comfort-spot with my tobacco. One moment it’s nearly spring, the next moment it’s snowing sideways. Here in Sagebrush Country, it is no different: last month I was in shorts and a t-shirt on my porch, and here I am in March watching bitter Alaskan storms pummel the desert. March is coming in for some of us like a crazed, robotic space lion than a lamb.

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Kyle Weiss
This cheeky review comes at a good time on both the calendar and in my life. I will fully admit I am not a “McClelland guy” when it comes to pipe tobacco, and I’m also of the opinion you smoke what you damn well please because it pleases you. Is it appropriate to rib the guy smoking something you do not? Of course it is. We’re all in this together, and if not for a little fraternal crap-talking. Pease-heads are snobs, McClelland guys are ketchup-smokers (that swear they can’t smell it), and Lakeland lovers are into sniffing soapy granny-panties–no one likes the aromatic guys: they’re just newbies or sweethearts. These are not hard-lines usually, as many of us switch it up between lines and brands, not to mention styles and mixtures. It’s also part of the fun. If you’re new to this game, it won’t take long to figure out pipe guys love their pipes and tobacco, and love perhaps a little more their opinions about them–whether they voice them or not. I’ve made a partial living at this point doing just that! It’s a great world to be in, provided you have the right skin thickness…

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Kyle Weiss
At the time of this writing I’m sitting in unseasonably warm conditions for Northern Nevada. I’m outside smoking in a t-shirt, shorts and listening to PĂ©rez Prado. I have a French press full of coffee, Black Friday nonsense is happening somewhere in the world and I couldn’t give a damn. There seems to be a constant food hangover stretching from my navel to my upper ribcage. For me, the holiday season could be well over. Call me a Scrooge, I’ll be proud of it. Christmas is a sham as a whole–at least the version everyone thinks of. To be honest, I’m not sure what the holidays really are for me. I’m not religious, I have a strange family set, and in general, the color scheme, smells and soundtrack are puke-worthy. I’m known as being the slightly intoxicated Grinch starting in December. That’s my tradition. The world is in discomfort and chaos: welcome to the last pipe tobacco review of 2017. At least the crab cacti are in bloom.

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Kyle Weiss
It’s almost “that time” of the year. Good, good: you caught my sardonic inflection there. I can almost smell it from here, the blissful sprawl of over-eating (and cooking) things a semi health-conscious fella like myself should not, the swimmy-headed relief of warm toddies, good wine, and neat whiskies, and the wafts of Latakia. The leaves have been raked and the blankets pulled out, with recipes and cookbooks being considered. It’s a ritual many of us go through each year, married or single, family or solo. Even if we put on a good front, I believe very few of us actively enjoy, at least not in its entirety, the thought of chaos in both the home and places of ill-shopping repute. For at least a month, if not two, there’s the need to escape being festooned in garish colors, assaulting spice smells, screeching from children and crazy kinfolk. …

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Jim Amash aka JimInks
Welcome to Part Two of my look at the original eight Seattle Pipe Club blends. In Part One, I discussed how the club was founded, and how master blender Joe Lankford became involved in creating home made mixtures that eventually led to the luxury blends for which he and the club became famous.

Mississippi River, Mississippi River Special Reserve, Deception Pass, and Rainier Levant were previously covered here, so now let’s focus on the other four blends, Seattle Evening, Potlatch, Plum Pudding, and Plum Pudding Special Reserve. Afterwards I’ll relate a little more about Joe and the club.

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Orlik Dark Strong Kentucky
    October 6th, 2017

Kyle Weiss
October is by far my favorite month of the year. It abandons the heat and bustle of summertime as it holds at bay the harshness of the wintertime. The fall colors are a treat, the smells are fresh, the mornings brisk, and the afternoons mild. In the Northern hemisphere, most of the harvest is in full swing and much of the good stuff coming from farms and gardens is rolling into farmer’s markets and grocery stores. The first real harvest of grain back in August gets made into beer and spirits, and to make way for new barrels in aging rooms, the aged whiskeys come out from smaller distilleries. Autumn decorations dot the porches of neighborhoods, suburban minivan-moms lose their minds over pumpkin-spiced…everything, and kids strain and gnash on their leashes, eager to overdose on free sugar at the end of the month. It’s the best time of year.

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Wessex Burley Slice
    September 18th, 2017

Kyle Weiss
I have the most ridiculous system for storing my “cellar” of tobacco. It’s a bookshelf-stand kind of thing with solid, sliding front doors. It’s from the 1970s, rescued from the company rubbish pile years ago. It weighs a ton, the doors constantly fall off, and this is where I keep my much lauded and prized tobacco collection. The contents are various jumbles of jars and tins stretching back from current times to maybe 2010 or so. What, exactly does this have to do with me reviewing tobacco? It’s my most reliable source for what to try next: meaning, tobacco falls out onto the floor that I haven’t seen in years.

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