Far as I know, neither Kevin nor the mods have mandated that all must like "Nightcap" or, for that matter "Escudo." The good Lord knows that this is a rugged band of individualists which hang around the forum. Consensus is very rarely achieved on any subject, let alone a blend.
I don't think it's a matter of mystique. You can buy it anywhere and it's available in bulk. I think it's popular because many people like it. It's not my thing, but I can appreciate why it is for some.
That's one of the hard lesson's of pipe smoking for me. Tastes vary so wildly in this realm
Whoa, whoa, whoa!!!!! Stop just a minute there!!!
Did someone just say they didn't like Escudo?
(P.S. - I have about 10 tins of Nightcap on hand. Some days I love it. Other days my taste buds just say no.)
Yeah, jmatt, that was me. The good news is I have several tins ageing in the cellar for all the Escudo fans who may want to trade during a drought. You know those happen from time to time. sjmiller, I'm sure Warren wasn't attacking you or anything. Almost anything on this forum is said with no malice intended. Sometimes I think if there was ever truly a Devil's advocate, Warren is on retainer!
I liked the taste when I tried it and then I spent the night unable to move my head at all. I'm such a nic wimp. I have the same problem with Haddo's Delight. I can't take more than a f or two before the effects hit. I have to be careful with Escudo too but I can get away with a couple of coins worth more often than not. I've been smoking three bowls a day for a couple of years and my tolerance has not changed over that time. Great tastes, all, but not worth the effects.
Nightcap delivers a stiff dose of Latakia and a definite spike of Perique, and at least traditionally, a pretty good kick of nicotine. For those of us who sat down with a big bowl pipe and had a good long smoke just after we cracked our first tin, it was a definite experience, and I'm glad I did it more or less just before retiring for the night. But after a few days when it aired out a little (tin closed but breathing), it turned into quite a gentleman. My only objection is, because it is full strength, it can upstage other blends in the rotation, but sometimes that's just what I want. For a more moderate experience without the Perique, but plenty of flavor, Dunhill My Mixture 965 is a robust flavorful blend. True or false, Nightcap and 965 provide a paradigm of the English blend as I know it. They're not my top pick, but close.
It took me some getting used to before I developed a fondness for the Nightcap. I like the combined stregnth and flavor. The smokey latakias mixing well with the orientals, and then PERIQUE thrown in there to tang it up a notch. It is a flavorful zippy tobacco, but also a good dose of Vitamin N thrown it to boot.
I like a good strong tobacco before bed. It helps me sleep, and has made it so that it has been three years since I have had a bout of insomnia that used to plague me. A good strong tobacco that sets my head to spinning really makes it easy to just drift off at night. I like Nightcap with a bit of chocolate to keep my blood sugars up when the nicotine overdose hits. This is it's charm to me. I like a few other latakia blends, but this one is the best for me before bed. 90% of the time, I prefer Virginias, but Nightcap was one of the first that sold me on latakia.
There are a few other strong blends that I enjoy also, some even stronger than Nightcap. But, this is a classic in which I always keep a few tins tucked away.