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Advice About Plugs/Bricks

(31 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by seacaptain
  • Latest reply from bigpond
  1. seacaptain

    seacaptain

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    Ok, so over the past year I've gravitated to Virginia flakes as my favorite tobacco. I particularly like most of the different Wessex flakes.

    So, I'm thinking about venturing into plugs, starting with a Wessex Gold Brick.

    Any others I should be looking at? What are the advantages of plugs vs flakes? Is it anything other than just a more for your money proposition?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. hawke

    hawke

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    I'm not real schooled on this, but I bet plugs are better if you plan to age it.

    Are those Tobacco Brownies?
    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. warren

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    My experience is that there is more . . . well, I can't define it but, pressed tobacco is just more flavorful? I suppose. The flavors are more distinct, for want of a better word, to my palate. Easier to discern to my worn out taste buds.

    Best I can do, sorry.

    A man without a shillelagh is a man without an expedient.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. mso489

    mso489

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    I really like GLP Triple Play, a great plug that includes burley, if you like that. Just be sure to slice it down the plug to get a combination of all the layers. I know that's obvious to most, but it was a big ah-ha moment for me that unveiled the romance of plugs for me. Plugs retain moisture and flavor really well, and seem to keep all of the constituent leaf pretty fresh. If you keep it in rotation, you don't necessarily need to jar it, unless you have a really expansive rotation. Jack Knife is another one; I haven't tried it, but I think it is among GLP's most popular plug tobacco. If you have learned to enjoy leaf, plug isn't that big a step; you just need to sharpen up a knife and get out a small cutting board. A wood board is good to maintain the edge on your blade.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. captainprophesy

    captainprophesy

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    I tend to favor plugs over flakes for the same reason that Warren stated... they are more flavorful, well at least to me they are. Its more of a deeper richer flavor than say flakes or other tobaccos.... maybe its all psychological, but thats how it is with me.

    I carry a gun... because a cop is too heavy!
    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. mcitinner1

    mcitinner1

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    Personally, I've had less satisfaction from any plug, than with flakes.

    PM Captain.

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    Godfrey Daniels!!
    The Plenipotent Key to Cope's Correct Card of the Peerless Pilgrimage to Saint Nicotine of the Holy Herb:
    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. davet

    davet

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    I can't explain any better than warren. I'm quite new to plugs and could easily switch to just plugs. Wessex Gold Brick is good, Peterson's 3P's is excellent. I haven't tried the GL Pease that I've cellared and won't tempt you with plugs from the UK.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  8. blackbeard

    Tyler

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    Plugs seem to marry the tobacco. Which done correctly is very pleasant. Try C&D Five O'clock Shadow.

    Who is John Galt?
    Posted 3 years ago #
  9. mcitinner1

    mcitinner1

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    Plugs seem to marry the tobacco. Which done correctly is very pleasant. Try C&D Five O'clock Shadow.

    Flake tobacco is the same thing as plug tobacco...except it's sliced.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  10. warren

    warren

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    Correct to point. The flake has been airing, 6 sides, since flaked. With the plug you do the separating, as desired when needed, so the compression remains until then. The flavors are sealed inside the plug so only the six sides of the plug are exposed, not thousands of sides of hundreds of flakes. I think that makes a difference, even in a vacuum packed container, especially when the vacuum is finally broken. So, same tobacco blend, different environment.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  11. tinsel

    tinsel

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    The only plug I've tried so far is Jackknife Plug from GL Pease. I'd highly recommend it as it's probably my favorite blend. Prep time with a plug is a little extensive, and you definitely need a SHARP knife for the job, but I think it's worth it.

    Oh and BTW, Jackknife is a SERIOUS blend. Lots of flavor. Lots of vitamin N. What else could you want?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  12. randelli

    randelli

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    I have been wondering about this for a while - please excuse a semi-related hijack. Could you slice and smoke plug chewing tobacco?

    "A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way" - Mark Twain

    KG5QDZ
    Posted 3 years ago #
  13. newfie

    newfie

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    Could you slice and smoke plug chewing tobacco?

    Years ago, and I mean decades and more, that is all the old guys smoked. I remember my best bud's dad taking a plug out of his pocket, picking off the pocket lint, and slicing off slivers into the palm of his hand, rubbing them out and stuffing into his pipe. It then took about a dozen matches to get it lit, but light it they did.

    Happiness is a warm bowl and a dry puck.
    Posted 3 years ago #
  14. condorlover1

    condorlover1

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    Members of my family pre-WW1 used to chew the plug and then put the munched up stuff in their hat and then smoke it in their pipe later in the day - if that isn't recycling I cannot think of a better example.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  15. seacaptain

    seacaptain

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  16. fitzy

    fitzy

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    If you've got a cigar cutter I find it easier to use that instead of a knife.

    "These are ghosts that are more at home in a girdle-filled drawer than one of my pipes." Quote by Neil Archer Roan on lakeland ghosts
    Posted 3 years ago #
  17. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    I find pressed tobaccos to be more homogeneous. Sometimes I like this, different leaves all pressed to make a new consistent flavor. And, sometimes I prefer a blend of ribbons, so that I can get a variation of flavors as the bowl progresses. It just depends on my mood. I like flakes and plugs, but I don't find them overwhelmingly better than ribbons, just different. More often than not, I will crave a nice ribbon cut, for the burn qualities. But, I would have to be hard pressed to say that I preferred one over the other.

    Michael
    Posted 3 years ago #
  18. hawke

    hawke

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    Good reading here.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  19. deathmetal

    deathmetal

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    So, I'm thinking about venturing into plugs, starting with a Wessex Gold Brick.

    Excellent idea.


    Plugs seem to marry the tobacco.

    My observation as well, with this same reasoning:


    The flake has been airing, 6 sides, since flaked. With the plug you do the separating, as desired when needed, so the compression remains until then. The flavors are sealed inside the plug so only the six sides of the plug are exposed, not thousands of sides of hundreds of flakes.

    "My own experience has been that the tools I need for my trade are paper, tobacco, food, and a little whiskey." -- William Faulkner

    The Metal Mixtures
    Posted 3 years ago #
  20. okiescout

    okiescout

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    I am a flake guy.

    "Work as if you were to live a hundred years. Pray as if you were to die tomorrow."
    Benjamin Franklin
    Posted 3 years ago #
  21. aggravatedfarmer

    aggravatedfarmer

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    I'm new to plugs. Love flakes. Im still getting the plug process down and I'm not afraid to admit it. Gaslight was a learning experience for me!

    Posted 3 years ago #
  22. davet

    davet

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    I love plugs ..... tobacco plugs

    Posted 3 years ago #
  23. deathmetal

    deathmetal

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    Im still getting the plug process down and I'm not afraid to admit it.

    It's kind of tricky. My technique is evolving. I was really into thin slices for awhile, then gave in to cutting it more like flakes. Weirdly it seems less messy than some other tobacco types.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  24. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

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    Of the 32 blends in my cellar, 30 are flakes and 2 are plugs. The plugs I smoke are Wessex Gold Brick and Peterson 3P. Flavor wise they are very different but a plug is pretty much a plug. I honestly would smoke many more plugs if the UK stuff was available here in the US. I like playing with a good plug, slicing and dicing a plug entetains me in some weird way. I tried smoking GL Pease Jacknife but there was way too much red virginia in it which burns the shit out of my tongue.

    If you like plugs, you may want to try your hand at ropes. Now those are different. You best be prepared for some serious nicotine though. The 2 I have tried were both Samuel Gawith ropes, XX Twist and Brown Rope no 4. Brown no 4 was like smoking a barbecue brisket, really smokey to my tastes, I like the XX Black better.

    Harris
    Posted 3 years ago #
  25. hawke

    hawke

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    Members of my family pre-WW1 used to chew the plug and then put the munched up stuff in their hat and then smoke it in their pipe later in the day - if that isn't recycling I cannot think of a better example.

    I heard of this guy who was in jail and would bum a smoke, put in the cheek and gum like Skoal and then at the end of the day dry it out, roll it up, and trade it to the new inmates for food.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  26. draco

    draco

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    I am pretty new to pipe smoking and smoking in general, less than two years on both counts. I did however get an education of sorts when I worked at The House of Windsor tobacco company in the Red Lion area of Pennsylvania back about 1982. I was there as a basic laborer with ManPower but the folks that worked there were very generous with their time and knowledge. One thing I found out was that tobacco pressed under just pressure alone changes somehow and tends to be more complex. Vary the time and pressure and you can vary the taste. Add heat into the process and more possibilities are there, literally changing the flavor of the same tobacco by just using pressure and time.

    I started as many do thinking I would likely enjoy aromatics most and bought too many as I find they sit as I delve deeper into more traditional forms of non-aromatics. I have found flakes tend to appeal to me more than ribbons etc. I have tried one cake and one crumble cake so far and the cake, GL Pease Gaslight I have found very enjoyable and complex. I am not in a situation at the moment where I could experiment much but have thought about building a press and trying to take just ordinary retail tobaccos and seeing how they might change by just pressing them.

    Just as an aside back in the late 1800s into even the 1950s or so the Red Lion area was a huge tobacco center for all sorts of tobacco. I know that House of Windsor made pipe tobacco and also machine and hand rolled cigars of the highest quality. At one point about 20% of all cigars sold in this country came from that one small region and from literally hundreds of suppliers and makers. Slowly over the years they merged and merged again and as tastes and politics changed many fell by the wayside. It's my understanding that the House of Windsor was the last hold out but it to has since gone under. Just wish I had been a smoker back then.

    Oh and I have a piece of Gawaith Black XX on back order waiting to try it.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  27. misterlowercase

    misterlowercase

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    Any others I should be looking at? What are the advantages of plugs vs flakes?

    The upcoming War Horse Bar will be worthy.

    Like many have said here, the depth of flavor seems to be intensified, along with a certain creaminess, and a fuller body.

    Is it anything other than just a more for your money proposition?

    Are you friggin' kidding?!?!?!?

    I spend more money than I should just to enjoy certain plugs unique characteristics,
    I end up paying over current USA market prices to have the privilege...



    ...and it ain't exactly logical or gentle for my budget LOL
    I could happily puff PPP everyday, but I enjoy the variation,
    most especially Velvan Plug which is divine.

    PM me yer cartoon-ass'd addy and I'll send out a sampler pack Cap'n!

    Note to our more sensitive readers:
    No, I did not insult the Cap'n by saying he is a cartoon ass,
    it is a long running in joke between us!
    http://pipesmagazine.com/forums/topic/and-i-bring-you-the-most-epic-pipe-turds

    Posted 3 years ago #
  28. misterlowercase

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    ...dunno if War Horse is gonna be called a bar or a plug,
    but whatever it's called, by all accounts it will be most excellent,
    and planned to be released in 25g size to remain true to the workingman spirit of its ancestral forebear.

    I am quite excited for the release.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  29. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Hmmm, did you change medications MLC? Ha ha, that's a 180 degree change towards War Horse. I am looking forward to it also. Since I saw this thread before the holidays, I have acquired a bar of Wessex Gold Brick and smoked half of it so far. It is good, and I look forward to trying other Wessex offerings, but still, IMO, it's not outstanding, good on the verge of great, but there are just so many Virginias out there.

    I found that the brick fits right into one of the small Mason Jars that I use easily. I've also found that I like to carve off slices from two different sides to make the brick dwindle down in size, but keep it's dimensional ratio. Ha ha, I'm just a nerd like that.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  30. misterlowercase

    misterlowercase

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    Hmmm, did you change medications MLC? Ha ha, that's a 180 degree change towards War Horse.

    Big difference between R/R (which imo should not have been released) and the new Plug, which is pressed in Denmark by Orlik just like all the other stuff I love.

    Apples 'n oranges.

    I actually do need a certain medication but I have no health insurance.

    Nuvigil is very expensive.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  31. User has not uploaded an avatar

    bigpond

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    Timely bump. Plugs have been all up in my heazy the last week or so after cracking open my second tin of Triple Play. The first was a bit of a disaster in retrospect. I didn't have a sharp enough knife to make clean slices yet I decided to slice the entire plug and jar it as a broken flake which I would rub slightly for expeditious smoking. For the second tin I decided to only cut a single flake at a time. The difference is so profound it's like an entirely different blend. And the difference is Perique.

    As perique dries it's impact rapidly deteriorates within a blend, ime. This is an issue with perique that I've posted about before. I think perique blends are best somewhere within the first 2 weeks of popping a tin. Even when jarred immediately I find the impact moves from fruity to bready with fruity overtones in a similar time frame.

    Anyway, back to TP, in my first tin the perique was a subtle fruity note while in the second it was the foundation of the blend. Losing the perique makes the blend all about the midrange; smoky notes playing against the sweet, slightly tangy red.

    At this point I'm a plug convert. I want every tobacco to come in a plug. A quick search at spc shows a very narrow range of plugs, all but two of which feature perique as a major component. That's cool and all, but I'm curious about how other styles respond to being plugged.

    I've found but haven't ordered/smoked Peterson's Perfect, Wessex Gold, Jack Knife and Kendall Plug (by which I'm particularly intrigued as BBF was last seasons favorite).

    I'm not quite wizened enough to wet my walking stick in the murky waters of codgerdom, does anyone have a recommendation for plugs from a US vendor?
    Bird's sing cheap, cheap, cheap.

    Edit: too much going on this morning to type quickly. MLC EPIC HAUL

    Posted 3 years ago #

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