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Am I Too Late?

(64 posts)
  1. bannyc9

    bannyc9

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    Transitioning from cigar to pipe and thoroughly enjoying the experience. Reading forums such as this one and articles elsewhere, much as been said about McClelland and Dunhill tobaccos - amazing reviews all around. Did I miss out on enjoying these before I even started? After reading about McClelland's in particular, many of them sound like I would love to give them a try. Any suggestions on getting my hands on some or some other brands I should try that you would suggest?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. chasingembers

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    Yep, McClelland is gone, and the Dunhill blends on the market are all that's left. Buy while you can.

    Damnation seize my soul if I give you quarters, or take any from you.
    -Edward Teach
    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. joeman

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    There are many other great tobaccos out there; plenty for you to choose from, that's for sure.

    JoeMan
    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. jaytex969

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    There are plenty of blends to enjoy beyond these two producers.

    If you don't try them, you'll never miss them.

    Pipes & Cigar's deal of the month is buy two, get one free on the Hearth & Home tins.

    The evil genius behind those blends is a virtual friend of the forum and a well respected blender.

    I recommend you read over them and pick 3 different styles to try.

    https://www.pipesandcigars.com/p/hearth-home-buy-2-get-1-free/2010833/

    Report back here with your findings, as we all live vicariously through the posts of others and we love watching the slow, grinding process of a new biped being sucked down the same rabbit hole....

    And, welcome to the forum!

    EDIT: And hurry up! There's way more blends sold out today than when I last looked yesterday...

    Gunner, Black Frigate. Say "Hello" to my little friend!
    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. echambers

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    Did I miss out on enjoying these before I even started?

    I made the switch a few months before you -- just by luck I managed to order a couple Frog Morton Cellar before they stopped production. I've opened one tin and have 2 more in my cellar. But like others have said, there is a lot of tobacco out there and I'm not going to regret something I've never had.

    Welcome to the forum, by the way!

    "There's something that doesn't make sense. Let's go poke it with a stick."
    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. d4k23

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    I felt the same way when I started, then I met GL Pease, Rattrays, Hearth and Home, Peter Stokkebye...this list goes on.

    Just prepare yourself for your emergency funds to take a back seat while you start your collecting. Even the tobacco I smoked and didn't like right away, I would go back to it after some time and get a different experience (usually better).

    Smoke slow and enjoy what you smoke! Welcome to the forums!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. jaytex969

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    Alternative to my previous suggestion. If you're a bit of a gambler with the selections and want to save a few bucks, fellow forum member woopigpiper is selling 8-tin sample packs of H&H blends for pretty cheap (2 each of 4 different blends):

    Click HERE

    Posted 1 year ago #
  8. warren

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    Blends have been coming and going for generations. Only Jim Inks has tried them all, he must be nearing 200 years old. Jaytex is right, if you've never tried 'em, you won't miss 'em.

    A man without a shillelagh is a man without an expedient.
    Posted 1 year ago #
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    maker

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    I just got into pipes this year. I get the impression that the days of great USA grown pipe tobacco is waning so get it while you can.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. seacaptain

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    You didn't miss out if you have enough money.

    My three favorite companies, Dunhill, McClelland, and Wessex. So, imagine how I feel.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  11. jpmcwjr

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    Not really. There are at least a half dozen good American blenders. And US blenders employ some leaf from outside the US, and European blenders use much tobacco from the US

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. curl

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    There’s plenty of Mcclelland blends available, just not retail.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. sablebrush52

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    Dunhill is still available until current stock sells out, so buy it while you can. McClelland can be found at about 5 times retail. There are a lot of other blends available that are terrific, like those from GL Pease, Hearth & Home, C&D, Wilke, HU, Mac Baren, Fribourg and Treyer, Germain's, Samuel Gawith, Gawith and Hoggarth, Peter Stokkebye, Rattray's, Solani, Wessex, Peretti, and more. McClelland produced a high quality tobacco, especially their Virginias, that many adored. But no one blender gets universal approval. Many didn't like McClelland blends, citing them as being rather one dimensional. I like McClelland Red Virginias and some of their other blends, but no more than blends made by the other brands cited above. Different blenders have different styles, something for everyone.

    It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. - Mark Twain

    It is pointless to argue with a fanatic since a dim bulb can't be converted into a searchlight. - Jesse Silver
    Posted 1 year ago #
  14. seacaptain

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    There are a lot of other blends available that are terrific, like those from GL Pease, Hearth & Home, C&D, Wilke, HU, Mac Baren, Fribourg and Treyer, Germain's, Samuel Gawith, Gawith and Hoggarth, Peter Stokkebye, Rattray's, Solani, Wessex, Peretti, and more.

    Yeah.... but let's not kid ourselves. They're not McClelland. Except maybe Wessex.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. cortezattic

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    Of late, the forums have been flooded with threads extolling the virtues of McClelland blends, and bemoaning the marque's demise. But I think this was the result of selection bias, wherein those who loved the blends contributed most of such posts. Those who don't think McClelland was all that good just remained silent -- conceding the site's bandwidth to the fans.

    IMO, you didn't miss all that much -- unless you're into tobacco that smells and tastes like ketchup, literally! (Even exalting reviewers would invariably add that the ketchup essence "doesn't translate into the taste", or "dissipates quickly", or some other ameliorative comment.) For sure, it was quality tobacco, but don't rue your late entry into the pastime. There are a lot of blends available that the silent majority hold in higher esteem.

    I find myself sitting idly on the line dividing past and future,
    as if I could kill time without injuring eternity. -- Thoreau
    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. bannyc9

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    Thanks all. As you all know, the amount that comes at you when you first start smoking pipes can be daunting - from the plethora of pipe makers to the never ending list of tobacco brands and blends. There is an amazing amount of variables and honestly I think this is what is making the start of the this journey so enjoyable. It was reassuring to know "newbies" can come to a forum such as this fine one and research/ get answers/ learn from years of experience.

    Cheers!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. sablebrush52

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    Yeah.... but let's not kid ourselves. They're not McClelland. Except maybe Wessex.

    True, but there are a lot of people who are happy about that.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. cosmicfolklore

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    Who makes Wessex's tobacco?

    Michael
    Posted 1 year ago #
  19. civilwar

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    Welcome to the forums!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. elvergun

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    Those who don't think McClelland was all that good just remained silent

    I don't think that there are many members who think that McClelland is/was not that good. Almost everything they made was good. Whether you like McClelland blends or not is a different story...but you can't deny that they made very good blends.

    Nine out of ten dentists agree that McClelland Virginias are some (if not the best) blends that were ever produced.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  21. cosmicfolklore

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    I don't think that there are many members who think that McClelland is/was not that good.

    Did you just come onto the forums? Ha ha, I have always loved McClellands, but I have always thought of myself as part of a small minority. Every mention of McClelland always got shouted down for FVF or some other European bunk.
    And, many of their blends all had the same production date on them, despite how many times I ordered them over the years. So, it was obvious that many, many of their Virginia blends just weren't popular. Tawny Flake and Aurora, I have ordered these many different times over the years, but always seem to get tins from the same canned batch date. So, either they ran millions in one day, or most likely, many of their blends were just sleepers for years. I think they were great, fantastic, the best even, but many, many, many have always found some problem with them.

    Of course their limited run CC blends were always a hit. But, it wasn't till the rumors started that EVERYONE jumped on a band wagon and bought out everything. Even blends that had obviously sat on the shelf for years after their first run.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  22. mso489

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    bannyc9, welcome aboard. You can still buy discontinued blends, but why start with that? (Of course, do it if you have the money and a compulsion toward nostalgia.) Instead, I'd echo joeman and recommend you explore blends still being marketed. Take a look at Cornell & Diehl, Mac Baren, Lane, Sutliff, the many permutations of PC Hearth and Home and others of their series, Peter Stokkebye, Peretti, Nat Sherman, and on and on. Pay special attention to some of the heritage blends including pouch and tub tobaccos that go way back and thus have some immunity from current regulatory rumblings. I score big points for blenders who work hard to maintain supply and distribution over the years. Take a look at Iwan Ries (Forums sponsor) for legacy blends. Why fall in love with the girl who left town, when there are scores who live in your home town and are just as smart, talented and attractive?????

    Posted 1 year ago #
  23. woodsroad

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    Yes.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  24. glassjapan

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    And, many of their blends all had the same production date on them, despite how many times I ordered them over the years. So, it was obvious that many, many of their Virginia blends just weren't popular.

    So true. For quite a few years, you could buy the Grand Oriental series and '07 tins were still sitting on the shelf.

    But to the OP there's plenty of awesome tobacco out there. One could go forever just on Samuel Gawith, G.L. Pease, or Cornell and Diehl and be a happy camper.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  25. seacaptain

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    Who makes Wessex's tobacco?

    Good question. The tins say "made in Germany" and the US distributor is Arango Cigar Co. Other than that, I don't know.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  26. whiteburleydude

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    BTW, what's happened to Samuel Gawith? So many VA blends out of stock. Seems like the last year or so it's been hit and miss at best.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  27. sablebrush52

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    Who makes Wessex's tobacco?

    Kolhase, Kopp & Co.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  28. woodsroad

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    Jesse, are they also making Peter Heinrichs?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  29. seacaptain

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    BTW, what's happened to Samuel Gawith? So many VA blends out of stock. Seems like the last year or so it's been hit and miss at best.

    Wessex Red has been out for some time but Yellow was available all over the place until just a few days ago, now you can't find it anywhere either.

    Strange times. VA's disappearing everywhere.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  30. cosmicfolklore

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    Strange times. VA's disappearing everywhere.

    The problem is the newbies are joining forums and social media and these new punks don't know how to play the damned game. First rule of smoking Virginias, don't tell anyone what your favorite Virginia is. It will sell out.
    Second rule of Virginias, you tell everyone that it burns hot and is bitey. We don't want more Virginia smokers.
    Third rule is that there is no such thing as Virginias. They're just made up stuff, probably a rumor started by Sutliff.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  31. hawky454

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    Mike McNeil was apparently a big fan of the Wessex VA Flake (Yellow?) which is probably why ya can’t find it in stock anymore. The McClelland fan boys probably heard him say that he has a closet full of the stuff on the radio show and thought to themselves, “Hmmmmm, if Mikey likes it, it must be good!”

    Posted 1 year ago #
  32. seacaptain

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    Mike McNeil was apparently a big fan of the Wessex VA Flake (Yellow?) which is probably why ya can’t find it in stock anymore.

    Yeah, strange. Wessex Yellow flake disappeared almost overnight. I bought 6 tins a couple of weeks ago from SP and almost everyone else had it in stock then too.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  33. cosmicfolklore

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    heard him say that he has a closet full of the stuff on the radio show

    Damn, he broke the code. Wessex probably ran a few hundred pounds of each blend years ago and it's been setting on shelves and in boxes everywhere since then. In fact, after I bought my last few blocks of Gold Brick, I don't think they've ever restocked. And, that was a long time ago.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  34. seacaptain

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    Wessex probably ran a few hundred pounds of each blend years ago and it's been setting on shelves and in boxes everywhere since then.

    Probably not that, since they changed from square to round tins about a year ago.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  35. cosmicfolklore

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    You're right, and they do offer a wider distribution that US companies.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  36. cigrmaster

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    Mike said he liked Wessex Gold Slice not their Gold Virginia Flake. I have both and find the Gold Slice to have more citrus than the Gold Virginia Flake. It is also a sharper Virginia and will get nippy if pushed to hard where as the GVF is softer and has no chance of bite.

    Harris
    Posted 1 year ago #
  37. snagstangl

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    Fear of missing out? I think you still only have 1,000 options. Just try things you can get, don't chase. I have some of the chased stuff and it just sits there not often smoked.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  38. cosmicfolklore

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    +1 snagstangl, I totally agree. The easier something is to get, the more you smoke it. The less the worry, the more you enjoy it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    frozenchurchwarden

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    Third rule is that there is no such thing as Virginias. They're just made up stuff, probably a rumor started by Sutliff.

    Funny, this is probably my favorite Virginia blend: https://www.4noggins.com/sutliff-altadis-bulk-dunhillelizabethan.aspx

    Posted 1 year ago #
  40. bannyc9

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    Thanks Jaytex, picked up 3 H&H's to try, also grabbed a Plum Pudding reserve...

    Posted 1 year ago #
  41. jpmcwjr

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    Isn't Liz's Mixture more of an aromatic? Smoked a tin a year ago, and can't be sure.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    I think some people have said they detected a hint of additives, it’s just a yummy well behaved blend as far as I can tell.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  43. seacaptain

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    it’s just a yummy well behaved blend

    Posted 1 year ago #
  44. cosmicfolklore

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    Frozen is obviously a Sutliff schill, planted here to spread rumors about these so-called Virginia blends. Everyone knows that aromatics are what the real pipesmokers buy.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  45. chasingembers

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    Sutliff does blend for Russ and Mac Baren to name a couple.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  46. chasingembers

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    Everyone knows that aromatics are what the real pipesmokers buy

    Well, yeah.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  47. pipesticks

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    Perhaps Wessex used some McClelland components in their blends??? hmmm. I'm still trying to figure out which Hearth & Home/Scotty's/etc. blends had McClelland components in them and are they still on the shelves? One I'm pretty sure on was Scotty's Old Red and that appears to be extinct these days too.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  48. pipesticks

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    Funny, this is probably my favorite Virginia blend: https://www.4noggins.com/sutliff-altadis-bulk-dunhillelizabethan.aspx

    I love that Elizabethan MATCH. I like a bunch of their match blends. The Presbyterian Mixture MATCH is another real winner.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  49. renfield

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    If you’re really feeling compelled to try McClelland then wait for the current fervor to abate and get a tin of 40th Anniversary and put it aside for a special occasion when you’ve got smoking a pipe figured out.

    Until then a few to add to what was mentioned would be GLP Chelsea Morning, Quiet Nights, Key Largo, Union Square, Temple Bar, Westminster.
    At P&C there are Firestorm, Magnum Opus, Classic Burley Kake, Anniversary Kake.
    Escudo, Orlik Golden Sliced, heck, waaay too many good blends out there for one lifetime.

    Find what you really like and cellar what you can. Tobacco will never be cheaper or more available than it is now.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  50. kola

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    50-so years of pipe smokimg I never cared for any McClelland or Dunhill blends.

    McC's virginia ? Pffft. Samuel Gawith blows them away. (i.e FVF and Best Brown to name a few)

    GL Pease and S. Gawith are top of the line. IMHO.

    I treat people the way they treat me. It's that simple.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  51. sablebrush52

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    Jesse, are they also making Peter Heinrichs?

    I don't know. It's either K K & Co, or Planta. Maybe Jim knows.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  52. coyja

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    Third rule is that there is no such thing as Virginias.

    Dude... thats the FIRST rule.
    Please consult your manual.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  53. cosmicfolklore

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    Wait, Planta makes blends for other companies? I had always imagined that they were a tiny company with their limited selection of just aromatics. I thought that maybe someone else made their blends. But, that was just my guessing while looking at their selections. They don't have the diversity that Sutliff does, knowing that Sutliff makes blends for several other blenders.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  54. seacaptain

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    McC's virginia ? Pffft. Samuel Gawith blows them away.

    Sure, if you don't mind running the flakes through a dehydrator for 8 hrs before you smoke them.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  55. 9mmpuffer

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    not to be an ass but McClelland was the best, in my opinion. That said, lots of great tobacco still available. H&H, GLP, Solani, Germains, etc. Recently Dunhill tobacco not too stellar.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  56. chasingembers

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    I don't know. It's either K K & Co, or Planta. Maybe Jim knows.

    According to tobacco reviews, Kohlhase & Kopp and Mac Baren manufacture them.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  57. sablebrush52

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    According to tobacco reviews, Kohlhase & Kopp and Mac Baren manufacture them.

    Good to know!

    Wait, Planta makes blends for other companies?

    Yep. And people here also thought that Sutliff only made aros with their "second rate" leaf. Little did they know that McClelland used a lot of that "second rate" leaf in their blends. Sutliff supplies leaf, or creates blends, for a number of different labels. Surprise!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  58. chasingembers

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    Sutliff manufactures for Russ and Mac Baren to name a couple.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  59. sablebrush52

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    Sutliff manufactures for Russ and Mac Baren to name a couple.

    Yep. And the only reason I can mention the McClelland connection is because it's no longer active.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  60. chasingembers

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    This is how I knew about Russ's connection.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  61. sablebrush52

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    Subtle!

    So screw all that whining about McClelland and Dunhill! Especially Dunhill, which hasn't been Dunhill in years. There's a great big world of blends out there for smokers to enjoy. And if you just have to have McDun or the sun won't rise in your world, then just grab your ankles and yell "Take me!" to all the scalpers on eBay.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  62. jvnshr

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    Wait, Planta makes blends for other companies?

    Isn't Brebbia Balkan blended by Planta? That's what I remember.

    So screw all that whining about McClelland and Dunhill! Especially Dunhill, which hasn't been Dunhill in years. There's a great big world of blends out there for smokers to enjoy. And if you just have to have McDun or the sun won't rise in your world, then just grab your ankles and yell "Take me!" to all the scalpers on eBay.

    Edit: Yup, a quick search on tobaccoreviews says that Planta blends Brebbia products and some others.

    Javan
    Posted 1 year ago #
  63. cosmicfolklore

    Cosmic

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    Cool to know about Planta. Thanks.

    There are several Sutliff blends that I really like. 1849 is one that I cellar deeply. But, my joke wasn't serious at all. I didn't want to pick on a site sponsor, and Sutliff already has that tongue and cheek camaraderie, with even Brian having to stutter about when he talks about them on the radioshow. It just wouldn't have been funny to call someone encouraging Virginias a C&D schill... hmmmm... unless we call someone a C&D burley schill. I'll note that one for next time, ha ha.

    Plus, I amuse myself thinking about a guy at Sutliff yelling across the factory floor, "Clean all of the ketchup out of mixer number 3, and clean it good. We have to run some Blueberry Jubilee next."

    Ok, OK, so enough with the Sutliff jokes. I did have a bowl of one of one of their burley broken flakes of some sort at Pipe Club last night. It was very good. I can't remember the name though. It wasn't an aromatic. Very tasty.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  64. cortezattic

    Cortez

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    Regarding McClelland's lack of popularity before going out of business, it's interesting to relate this thread to robcapp's necro-bump:

    Apologies for the old thread revival... I was looking through past threads and found this great thread.

    It was fun to read the responses.....and it was very interesting to see how few people would have put away any McClellands blends!
    This would have made a great social experiment in how the desirability changes based on availability / scarcity.

    http://pipesmagazine.com/forums/topic/20-lbs-thats-the-limit#post-1205850

    Kudos to Jesse for the prescient way he documented our preferences in that old thread.

    So, no, banny, you didn't miss all that much.

    Posted 1 year ago #

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