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Brown Sugar Goldmine!!!

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  • Started 1 year ago by transpose
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  1. transpose

    transpose

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    I almost threw this out!!! I took a member’s advice to examine my 22 year old Butera Dark Stoved “bloom” under a microscope before chucking it. Holy smokes I’m so glad I did!!! Now, I am honestly struggling to not just eat this gorgeous, candy-coated, sweet and crunchy goodness!!! I cannot imagine what it’s going to taste like. It smells delicious! I just wanted to share my joy






    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. npod

    npod

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    You! Sir. Are my hero.

    Thank you for posting .jpegs from your microscope. I have looked at my aged tobacco under the microscope before, but I didn't have a camera to capture the images. They look just like yours. This is great documentation.

    Enjoy smoking that aged crystal flake!

    Neal
    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. kickinbears

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    Love it, and grtz; not mold!

    Appreciate the pics!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. bassbug

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    This might sound naive and silly but....

    Doesn't the sugar crystal growth simply turn the tobacco from an unflavoured virginia into a sweet aromatic?

    Why not just get a sweet tobacco to begin with?

    I don't care who you are, you're not walking on the water while I'm fishing
    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. cortezattic

    Cortez

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    Shouldn't all, or most, of the sugars have been eaten by microbes? Is that substance soluble in water?

    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 #
  6. folanator

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    Still not convinced that's not salts as opposed to sugars, but either way that looks yummy.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. sablebrush52

    sablebrush52

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    It's not sugar, so, no, it won't turn the weed into candy. Those are just mineral deposits that leach out onto the surface over time.

    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 #
  8. mawnansmiff

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    "Doesn't the sugar crystal growth simply turn the tobacco from an unflavoured virginia into a sweet aromatic?"

    What you're seeing are not sugar crystals, it's crystallized oils and other minerals.

    Regards,

    Jay.

    ...take up thy stethoscope and walk...
    Posted 1 year ago #
  9. transpose

    transpose

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    Is it smoke worthy?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. bassbug

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    I am honestly struggling to not just eat this gorgeous, candy-coated, sweet and crunchy goodness!!!

    I guess it was this that got me wondering.

    What you're seeing are not sugar crystals, it's crystallized oils and other minerals.

    So what exactly do these crystals add to the tobacco? Do they change the flavour? What do they change it to? I'm a little confused, the reviews for this tobacco say there is no flavouring detected

    Posted 1 year ago #
  11. transpose

    transpose

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    Would you smoke it?

    I’m getting confused. At first I was wondering how to tell if this was mold. I was convinced it was bloom but was told to look at it through a microscope. If it is fuzzy or hairy, then it is bloom and trash it! If it is crystals, then it’s sugar so enjoy it! I was able to identify that it is in fact crystals, but now I’m hearing that the sugar should have been eaten by now. Or even that it is not sugar, but salt.

    I only say that I want to eat it because of its appearance. It looks like (under the microscope) a caramelized sugar on the edge of and apple pie crust

    I’m not an aromatic guy so I really focus on the sweetness that comes from Virginia's. I have many VA Flakes in my cellar that have what appears to be sugar on them. I have just never had one that has this much.

    I can definitely taste the difference between fresh Blackwoods Flake and 5+ year old BWF that has sugar veins that have surfaced. I’ll take the aged stuff every time.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. User has not uploaded an avatar

    bigpond

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    Yes, it’s smoke worthy. Don’t fret. What you are seeing, as you may know, is often referred to as “bloom”, in both pipe and cigar circles. Once thought to be sugar crystals, laboratory analysis has shown recently it is not. I’ll see if I can find a link for you, but in the meantime rest easy and fill up your pipe.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. woodsroad

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    I'm glad this turned out to not be mold. But it almost certainly isn't sugar, either.
    One of my (unproven) theories is that it could be caused by whatever anti-fungal treatment that they use. Potassium propionate is a common anti-fungal preservative used on tobacco. It is the salt of propanoic acid, and could certainly be what you are seeing here.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  14. User has not uploaded an avatar

    bigpond

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    I ran out of time to edit my post.

    In a nutshell, it appears that bloom/plume is one of a number of moulds.

    Here’s a link to an updated thread on the topic. Somewhere there was a thread that included photos of pipe tobacco. The reference I had is now dead. Perhaps someone else has an updated link?

    Interestingly, the op is offering a bounty for a sample that proves to be anything other than mould.

    http://www.friendsofhabanos.com/forum/topic/131757-foh-mould-study/

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. civilwar

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    Awesome, Congrats!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. chasingembers

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    Doesn't the sugar crystal growth simply turn the tobacco from an unflavoured virginia into a sweet aromatic?

    Naturally sweet doesn't equal aromatic.

    I like coffee exceedingly.
    - H. P. Lovecraft
    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. olkofri

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    Have to get me a stereoscope too!

    Not the sweet, new grass with flowers is this harvesting of mine;
    Not the upland clover bloom...
    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. cosmicfolklore

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    I've seen many spirited debates here on whether it is a form of sugar, or minerals leaching from the tobaccos. Some have presented lab results that it is in fact, scientifically proven to be a form of sugar. I have also seen posts where it was in fact scientifically proven to be merely minerals leaching out. Usually, credentials, lab results, and big words are whipped out and smacked about each others' head and shoulders. "How dare you question the authenticity of my lab."

    In the few times I have opened an aged tin to find crystal bloom covering the flakes like Liberace's cape, I have found that they don't taste sweet on the tongue. And, in smoking them, I find them to be rather good, but not necessary sweeter smoke. Some just might have a rather earthy taste. Psychologically, I find that I get excited and enjoy the smoke better, regardless.

    What is it? How does it form? I am not a chemist, but I really don't care. I just think of it as a sign that the tobacco has transformed with age. Better or worse? It just depends on whether you enjoy it or not.

    Michael
    Posted 1 year ago #
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    bigpond

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    Michael, did you read through that thread?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. cosmicfolklore

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    Sure, Bigpond, I didn't say anything that opposes what you have posted, or anyone else. I merely pointed out that there have been many mixed results set forward in this forum, as well as many other forums on what exactly this is. All seem to set forth some sort of scientific accolades, or they rely on their trust in a family member, friend, or some other websites credentials.

    I saw your post about cigars, but I have just now scanned through it. It doesn't seem to be any more or less proof than any of the other threads I have seen on it being sugars, using big scientific terms or even diagrams of sugar molecules.

    My post was merely, stating, that none of that matters to me. It's like people arguing religions, and swapping excerpts from their religious book of choice. In the science of tobacco bloom camps, I am agnostic.

    But, if you think that I am going to throw away a plug of crystalized Jackknife because of a thread saying that it is mold, then your crazy.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  21. sablebrush52

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    Would you smoke it?

    I’m getting confused. At first I was wondering how to tell if this was mold. I was convinced it was bloom but was told to look at it through a microscope. If it is fuzzy or hairy, then it is bloom and trash it! If it is crystals, then it’s sugar so enjoy it! I was able to identify that it is in fact crystals, but now I’m hearing that the sugar should have been eaten by now. Or even that it is not sugar, but salt.

    I only say that I want to eat it because of its appearance. It looks like (under the microscope) a caramelized sugar on the edge of and apple pie crust

    I’m not an aromatic guy so I really focus on the sweetness that comes from Virginia's. I have many VA Flakes in my cellar that have what appears to be sugar on them. I have just never had one that has this much.

    I can definitely taste the difference between fresh Blackwoods Flake and 5+ year old BWF that has sugar veins that have surfaced. I’ll take the aged stuff every time.

    Don't sweat the debatable details. It's good to smoke. Smoke it. BTW, bloom isn't mold.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  22. woodsroad

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    All seem to set forth some sort of scientific accolades, or they rely on their trust in a family member, friend, or some other websites credentials.
    Not me.
    My postulation (proprionate crystals) is pure speculation, based only on having observed the crystals form on tobacco that I had treated.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    bigpond

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    My post was merely, stating, that none of that matters to me. It's like people arguing religions, and swapping excerpts from their religious book of choice. In the science of tobacco bloom camps, I am agnostic.

    Yep. I get it. I just wasn’t clear if you were reacting to the lab results in that thread specifically or in the general. I haven’t seen any other lab results on the subject so I’m kinda surprised to read that you’ve come across contradictory lab results.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  24. cosmicfolklore

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    Oh no, I wasn't just bashing on your post. We have had a few very upstanding members that have posted very convincing but contradictory "scientific" results.

    That's interesting Woods.

    I will just go on thinking of them as magic micro-bug poop.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    bigpond

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    All the unattributed quotes in this thread is a reminder that this board really needs to be updated to windows 3.1......come on guys, it’s time already

    Posted 1 year ago #
  26. cosmicfolklore

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    All the unattributed quotes in this thread is a reminder that this board really needs to be updated to windows 3.1

    BLASPHEMY!!!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  27. transpose

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    I cranked up the magnification to 225X!!! and...the sablebrush. I was messing that up.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  28. ravkesef

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    By all means do not smoke it! Mail it to me for proper disposal. I’ll burn it in a small wooden furnace I have so that it will be properly disposed of under sanitary conditions.

    Eric
    Posted 1 year ago #
  29. woodsroad

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    Ah...it's laundry lint, for certain. Go ahead and smoke it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  30. woodsroad

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    No, don't smoke it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  31. woodsroad

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    Yes, you can smoke it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  32. woodsroad

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    Don't.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  33. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

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    "Windows 3.1" ... "BLASPHEMY!" -- Absolutely right, Cos'! This is a FORUM! Windows 3.1.1! WORKGROUPS! }}:)

    Head Black Frigate keelhauler, boss powder monkey, & troublemaker 1st class.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  34. bnichols23

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    "proper disposal" -- Dead-on, Eric. This is Toxic Stuff. Always best left to experts with the know-how & correct safety equipment. You, me, Cosmic, Duane, Tom, John, Warren, Anthony, Jay -- people like that, who've lived a full life & wouldn't mind if it did them in at this point!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  35. cigrmaster

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    I would not hesitate to smoke that tobacco. I would be willing to bet it tastes pretty darn good.

    Harris
    Posted 1 year ago #
  36. User has not uploaded an avatar

    bigpond

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    ^. Pretty sure this guy would scrape the dust and snort it if sent a sample

    Posted 1 year ago #
  37. mawnansmiff

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    "I cranked up the magnification to 225X!!! "

    If you're able, then I would suggest you get it up to at least 800 - 1000 x magnification, and if you are able to get a clear image (not at all possible on cheapo so called microscopes that plug into a PC) then you will see that the crystalline structure in no way resembles that of any known sugars.

    Regards,

    Jay.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  38. workman

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    How about licking the flake to check if it is salt or sugar?

    Smoking is one of the leading causes of all statistics.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  39. woodsroad

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    A "salt" may not taste like table salt.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  40. wyfbane

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    My God. It looks fantastic!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  41. witchofthehollow

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    Smoke it immediately and tell us how it is !!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  42. weezell

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    Pretty sure this guy would scrape the dust and snort it if sent a sample
    I will I will...

    "the weez"...
    Posted 1 year ago #
  43. 901blends

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efflorescence

    a well understood phenomenon

    Posted 1 year ago #
  44. User has not uploaded an avatar

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    Posted 1 year ago #
  45. woodsroad

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    901blends, this would then be consistent with the tobacco industry use of propionate salts as a mold inhibitor, correct?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  46. 901blends

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    Ultimately I can't make a conclusion, although I thought about casing some Virginia with Himalayan pink sea salt just so that I could put it in a jar and then switch it back and forth between my fridge until it grows pink "bloom".

    If it's science, we should be able to replicate the effect.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  47. woodsroad

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    Replication might be difficult, since we don't know what exactly has been added to the tobacco over time (harvest to tin). Best bet, I would think, is to have the crystals analyzed. Who volunteers to pay for it?

    I think that there are probably several distinct phenomena going on here that collectively pass as "plume". Some is biological, no doubt. But these are crystals. What we need is a pipe smoker that works in university science research who would be willing to slip in some extracurricular experimentation....

    Posted 1 year ago #
  48. 901blends

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    Confusing that, is that some molds will be reflective in small amounts, like a sealed container where there isn't much air to let them grow. And they can even sparkle. So a white powder could just be mold that started to grow and ran out of fuel.

    Mold inspectors have the same issues diagnosing "is it mold or efflorescence?" when examining buildings.

    ref: https://inspectapedia.com/Wet_Basements/Effloresence_White.php

    Looking at the microscope photo in the OP's brown sugar post, it appears to not be a mold. In the ref: link above, you can see what they would look for under a high powered microscope.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  49. transpose

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    I will donate a slice for the cause

    Posted 1 year ago #

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