A Characteristic for all the Dunhill Blends I've Tried

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kane

Senior Member
Dec 2, 2014
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I am fairly new at this, but I have had a chance now to try quite a few English style blends from different brands. I have also regularly been smoking some Dunhill blends: EMP, MM965, London Mixture, and Standard Mixture. One thing that I am noticing about all of the Dunhill blends that I have tried, but I am not really picking up with the other English style blends, is that the Dunhill blends seem to have a cigar-like (for lack of a better term) characteristic to them. It's like a strong overtone that I'm getting from the Dunhills, whether it be EMP or MM965, that I do not get from the variety of other brands. What is it about Dunhill that is doing this? I like Dunhill a lot, but it seems to be one taste element that distinguished Dunhill from the rest for me.

 

shutterbugg

Preferred Member
Nov 18, 2013
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Dk what other blends you've been smoking. EMP is IMO MM965-lite, so not surprising you'd taste similarities. Never smoked London or Standard. I do smoke Nightcap, used to smoke Royal Yacht (for some reason the only Dunhill I disliked after smoking it a while) and DNR (switched to clone Escudo due to $). None of those has anything near what I could call a cigar taste or smell, and I used to be a cigar smoker.

 

kane

Senior Member
Dec 2, 2014
429
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Maybe Cigar is not the best word, but there is something strong in them that they all seem to share that sets them apart from the other makers I have tried, sort of a mouth feel after taste lingering thing, perhaps it's the way they prepare their tobaccos, something more earthy or gusto. I do taste something similar in cigars, but have smoked more pipe tobacco than cigars.

 

pitchfork

Preferred Member
May 25, 2012
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I get certain mustiness from Dunhill tobaccos that I really like. Not so much with Royal Yacht, but definitely the other blends.

 

owen

Preferred Member
May 28, 2014
560
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Ive tried a number of Dunhill blends but have yet to find one I would readily go back to.

 

cobguy

Preferred Member
Oct 18, 2013
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All of those blends contain Orientals which can definitely exhibit musty / earthy notes.
It depends upon the variety used, so perhaps it's the type Dunhill uses that is different.

 

cortezattic

Preferred Member
Nov 19, 2009
14,412
197
Chicago, IL
I don't have a plausible explanation; but I like reading posts like this, for it shows discernment and an informed palate.

Keep at it and try to narrow-in on and isolate a particular ingredient. We'll all benefit from your discoveries.

I'm inclined to think the blender draws on a particular variety of leaf that finds its way into all their recipes.

 

lestrout

Preferred Member
Jan 28, 2010
1,635
1
Chester County, PA
Following up on Cortez's thoughts, master blenders like Dunhill (actually now Orlik) may use common casings when they first prepare their leaf in the process. For instance, a lot of Germains, KK and Planta strike me as using anise (or something similar) in their process, and many MacBarens have that sweet maple honey note. I would assume that as the manufacturing plant is changed, that the recipes being transferred would specify casings.
hp

les

 

beefeater33

Preferred Member
Apr 14, 2014
2,535
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Central Ohio
I pick up a distinct (black) walnut flavor in most Dunhill blends. Not so much in the Navy Rolls or the Flake though. But the 965, EMP, Nightcap, and to a lesser extent, the Standard Mixtures and RY. When I was a kid, my Gramp would shell out local grown (Ohio) black walnuts-- they are much more acrid, stronger, and more bitter than English walnuts. I get THAT taste in these blends for some reason, but in a good way. I love them, and they are always in my rotation.

I agree, Dunhill blends all have that certain common factor and its a love/hate thing for many people.

+1 Pitchfork-- I get that certain mustiness too, and love it.

 

apatim

Senior Member
Feb 17, 2014
497
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Jacksonville, FL
I just opened a tin of London Mixture that's been in my cellar since last April. Not really sure why I waited so long to try it. I find it on the milder side, compared to Nightcap but with more interesting flavors than the very mild EMP. I've smoked 4 bowls so far and have no complaints whatsoever... nice cool smoke. Goes nicely with scotch.

 

freakiefrog

Preferred Member
Dec 26, 2012
745
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Mississippi
I some MM965 on a regular basis, I've tried Royal Yacht didn't like it, however I do enjoy Early Morning Pipe and The Aperitif. I think what you're getting is all variations of a theme. Many of the brands will stick to a basic model with it comes to specific types of blends. Take McClelland if you open any of their Va blends you'll know its one of theirs right away. I think Dunhill blends are going the same route. Just my two cents though.

 

nachman

Member
Jun 27, 2013
229
1
Dunhill blends use Virginias from Africa which are more "cigar like" than American Virginias. Gawith Hoggarth also uses African Virginias, but many of their blends also have a Lakeland topping, which is a love it or hate it type of thing.

 

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
25,958
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Very observant. I think either the Oriental or the African Virginias are a shared theme between blends, as has been suggested by others. To me, MM965 is the best balanced blend and serves as a kind of baseline, at least among the Dunhill blends. Nightcap is a good full-strength smoke, but maybe not for everyone, or for every day. Royal Yacht is a sort of specialty item; most seem to take it a tin at a time. I give Dunhill third place, after Cornell & Diehl and GL Pease, for blending craft, at least at present. Dunhill is the old reliable, but CD and GLP are incredibly creative and ingenious and are often both outlandishly successful in their efforts and surprising at the same time. McClellands, Sutliff, and Lane are close on the heels of the front runners (in my assessment anyway). Although Nat Sherman 536 gets my blue ribbon for English blends, temperate though it is.

 

settersbrace

Preferred Member
Mar 20, 2014
1,565
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As a fellow Dunhill fan I can agree that there is signature note that crosses over from EMP, 965 and NC. EMP is considered "light" and/or "mild" by many and although it's certainly not a heavy bodied blend it isn't lacking in the nic dept. IMHO anyway. I've had the pleasure on more than one occasion to sample some 40 some year old Nightcap from a collector friend and the tin seal was superb according to him when he popped it, the flavor and tin note are almost spot on with what's being offered today albeit the vintage stuff gets the nod from me only because it's a bit more complex. The toasted nut taste is something I'm always craving in my tobaccos whether it be in a pipe blend or a cigar and the Dunhill offerings rarely fail to deliver that as well as just shouting quality blending leaf in the process.

 

maxx

Preferred Member
Apr 10, 2015
709
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What about Durbar? It has a heaviness to it like a cigar. Sort of like a balled fist.

 

owen

Preferred Member
May 28, 2014
560
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Right now I have tried:

Navy rolls

standard mixture

flake

my mixture 965

and I love them all

A tin of night cap next

 

aggravatedfarmer

Preferred Member
Sep 9, 2015
866
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You know, I really wanted to like London Mixture and Royal Yacht. Maybe I haven't developed the senses yet required to observe the flavors. I ended up trading them for a standby I like to have on hand. Nightcap however, keeps me entertained a bit. I like the tin note and fragrance. The nic kick is subtle to me, but I don't smoke nightcap for the nicotine. I have noticed the similar, but distinct flavor of all three Dunhills I've tried. Whatever it may be, to me it is off putting. Like the barnyard smell of La Brumese. However I will just take my moneys elsewhere and find tobaccos that fit my taste.

 

aggravatedfarmer

Preferred Member
Sep 9, 2015
866
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Come to think of it. I have baby's bottom match and it does not have that characteristic and I really do enjoy it.

 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
14,104
88
Maryland
Thanks to lestrout, I smoke MM965 daily. The nuance in that blend for me, has to be the brown cavendish, which is pretty unique among pipe blends. (many of the match blends use this component) I was surprised to see Frog Morton uses it, I'll have to revisit that blend.

 

deathmetal

Preferred Member
Jul 21, 2015
7,724
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the Dunhill blends seem to have a cigar-like (for lack of a better term) characteristic to them
I know what you mean. It is very hard to define. Could be a consequence of aging, or a certain method of gentle stoving? Perhaps they have a casing in common. But they have that somewhat ancient flavor, a muting of extremities in the elements of the blend, and a careful marriage.