Estate Pipes Central
    November 7th, 2017

A. Miller
If you’ve ever gone antiquing, it’s likely you’ve rolled in to a location (usually outside of most towns) where there is more than one antique shop. While technically competitors, the nature of these shops being near one another makes it so that you can visit one place, and have opportunity to visit more than one antique shop. The shopper’s benefit, and as a result the sellers do too.

This is the same premise for the recently launched Estate Pipes Central—the brain child of Mkelaw Pipe’s Dave Neeb. I spoke to him recently about the genesis of the site and what they’re looking to do. Now, Estate Pipes Central could be a conglomerate of every person and company selling estate pipes that could be found. But this was not the intention for Dave. The very point was to gather well-known, reputable online retailers to one convenient location.

Read the rest of this entry »

Alive in That Electric Vibe
    September 18th, 2017

Fred Brown
I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs - Albert Einstein, 1950

I’m late with this column this month for a variety of reasons: I wrecked my car, but managed not to injure or kill anyone. I wasn’t smoking my pipe at the time, which is probably as good a reason as any to find cause. Plus, my brain begins to miss gears like an old car without a steady dose of pipe smoke.

Second, I have been fretful, ornery, and downright hard to get along with over the events of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

I have some acquaintances in Texas and Louisiana, but I have several friends and some relatives in Florida. The power of Irma was not only awe-inspiring, but she was also like a dark, hovering wraith of brutality.

Read the rest of this entry »

Fred Brown
Rising from the calamity of World War II in Europe,
a small woodworking shop in Przemysl, Poland, by the San River, began looking around for new ways to sustain itself in a town known for its pipes and its pipe artists.

Already producing wood carvings and plastic creations, the owners were eager to explore their on artistic talents, to carve pipes in Przemysl, known in Poland as the Headquarters of Tobacco Pipes.

In fact, Przemysl is filled with many pipe artists, and has even erected monuments to the pipe in the town’s center. Pipes and pipe making are central to Przemysl and sustain its regional and cultural identity.

Read the rest of this entry »

Fred Brown
This is not a "", a Pipestud, or a Jiminks type of tobacco review. I’m not in that league. But I just wanted to jot down a few thoughts about the recent re-release of "Stonehenge Flake" by G.L. Pease and the late John Gawith of GH&Co.

Pease and Gawith (and what a combination that is, right?) originally blended this masterpiece in 2001 as a special limited edition of a 1,500-tin run. That event sold out quickly, leaving a few of us to wonder what happened? Stonehenge has not been seen since, to my knowledge.

And now, it is baaaaaaaaccccck! Somehow, I missed the first shipment, and was just waiting like a vulture for new tins to arrive at

Read the rest of this entry »

Fred Brown
Ok, boys and girls, gather around.
The Pipe Pundit is going to delve into a few thorny intricacies of the care and feeding of a pipe. This is pure Pundit pipe philosophy, just so you know.

As we all are aware, our beloved briars require, nay, must have vast quantities of opulent tobacco in its many forms. Some of us fancy tobacco-cum-ambrosia topped with spritzes of lemon meringue, coconut juice and licorice, otherwise known as aromatics.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Other Side of the Street
    May 12th, 2017

Fred Brown
Well, go on with you, now.
The FDA is taking a breather from its ransacking of the tobacco industry, especially pipe tobacco, so the story goes in a recent Washington Post epistle.

Yeah, sure. I’ll believe it when I see the cold, hard, results. Don’t fall for all the smoke and mirrors and let your hopes run amuck. This looks like and smells like fool’s gold to me.

Here’s my take (and please take it for what it’s worth): The boys and girls who work for the FDA have had a front-row seat watching as other large bureaucratic watering holes have been stripped almost naked by the new administration.

Budget cuts, staff cutbacks and surprise firings have been de rigueur.

Read the rest of this entry »

Slower than a One-Legged Rooster
    April 10th, 2017

Fred Brown
You know the routine: Things don’t seem to be going the way they once did. You are slower on the upbeat and too fast on the downbeat. Out of tune with those around you. You leave the room and when you return—bang!—things have changed.

Maybe, you think, a vacation is in order. I know it’s only April, but you have to do some things for your sanity. It’s tax season, too. Ah, the beach calls my name.

Then, almost as if in a movie, where lovers in a field, run toward each other in slow-mo, there is the pipe of your dreams! Yes, the one true love you have been awaiting with all your emotions raging. Hormones taking flight like roman candles on July 4. Cue music, doo-da, doo-da, all the day long.

Read the rest of this entry »

Outflanked but Not Outdone
    March 7th, 2017

Fred Brown
In the four decades I first discovered the joys of pipe smoking,
I have learned that life changes when you aren’t looking. Leave the room and when you return, something is missing. Like your favorite pipe tobacco!

The older I become, the more I understand that getting older is far more desirable than not getting older.

No, really, putting age between the ears provides you with some brain cells you didn’t know you had, especially when you were in the wild flames of youth.

For example, I don’t scorch my tongue with cheap tobaccos any longer. Nor do I puff my pipes like an overworked engine today. In fact, I don’t do many things I once thought important, such as staying out all night in all the wrong places.

Read the rest of this entry »

Make Mine Einsteinian
    February 10th, 2017

Fred Brown
What the Hades is going on?

Was I asleep when the doors closed on sanity? Is nothing sacred any longer?

Yes, the times they are a-changing, but who would have thought just a few years back that historic Dunhill blends, the iconic names in pipe tobacco, the top of the food chain in Pipe World, could under any circumstances go the way of the dodo bird?

We all know that the Dunhill tobaccos of the past are not the same Dunhill tobaccos of today. But I’m not the same dashing reporter I was 30 years ago, either. And I kinda suspect some of you geezers and wannabe geezers aren’t the same either.

But, to become extinct? Not on your life would I have ever believed that.

Read the rest of this entry »

Listening to Rick and to Reason
    January 9th, 2017

Fred Brown
If you haven’t read Rick Newcombe’s
The FDA’s Unauthorized War on Pipes and Cigars at you should right now. The piece appeared Dec. 13 on the web site and I can’t stop thinking about just how good that essay really is.

The deck (secondary headline for those of you who are not familiar with newspaper composition headline jargon) is, "The FDA is extending the meaning of the Tobacco Control Act to cover cigars, pipe tobacco, and even pipes."

Every Congressman worth a vote should read Newcombe’s composition. It absolutely describes the issue of government overreach, a government out of control and intruding into the lives of individuals as well as entire business enterprises.

Read the rest of this entry »