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"Cellar or Smoke?" Clarification

(5 posts)
  • Started 1 year ago by rmbittner
  • Latest reply from rmbittner
  1. rmbittner

    rmbittner

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    Brian:

    I appreciated the shout-out on this week's podcast. But I think you misunderstood my suggestion for a segment I was calling "Cellar or Smoke?" You may still not like the idea but I just wanted to clarify what I meant.

    I was picturing a segment that would look at new tobacco releases (and maybe others), do a taste test, and then evaluate whether the blend is probably at its peak now, whether it's something that needs age before it will blossom, or if maybe it's good now but would be great in 10 years. What I had in mind was a segment that would not only highlight the smoking characteristics of new blends but would also treat pipe tobacco releases like new vintage wine releases. It would give listeners tips for how to evaluate their own favorite blends -- both for now and for the years to come.

    I certainly wasn't suggesting a show that would help me to determine whether I was in the mood to smoke something now or keep it in cellar!

    Bob

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

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    Bob, I think that is a great idea. I would love to hear Brians take on different blends, this way we will know if he has any taste or not. lol

    Harris
    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. eibhir

    eibhir

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    That's a great idea. It would help me find more tobaccos.

    A smile will always keep them guessing.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. brianlevine

    brianlevine

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    Bob,

    I appreciate your comments. When Kevin and I first sat down to discuss the idea of the show we talked about doing reviews. These are my concerns about me reviewing products whether it be pipes, tobaccos or accessories:

    1. I am in the industry. I am either friends with, competitors with, sell or have sold a lot of the products on the market. As you know I am currently responsible for all of Brigham's sales in the USA.

    2. The show sells ads and thus shouldn't offend any manufacturer, supplier or retailer that may want to or currently is advertising (if a guest does that, that is ok).

    3. The most important thing for me is that the show be a celebration of all pipe smokers and I would not want to talk poorly about a pipe or tobacco that is your favorite. I prefer to maintain that if you love a blend it is the best in the world.

    4. The guys doing the reviews on pipesmagazine.com do a much better job than I can. I will ask Kevin to have those guys add a "Cellar or Smoke" comment to the reviews they do.

    5. Finally, I actually, really hated taste testing blends and doing product control when I worked for Stokkebye but, it had to be done. Now I am doing the same for Brigham as we work on our line of product. I have such a narrow taste profile of blends that I like that smoking an aromatic or English is painful for me. I just like my few straight Virginias and Virginia - Periques.

    In future episodes I will do a better job of getting my guests to talk about their favorite blends, aging them and what else is new on the market. Again, thank you for comments and for being a loyal listener. I hope you continue to enjoy the show.

    Brian

    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. rmbittner

    rmbittner

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    Thanks, Brian!

    I didn't mean to suggest that the burden of this had to fall exclusively on you. I guess I was under the assumption that you could have guests do featured segments. (Although now that I think of it, I can't recall that ever happening so far.)

    As for #2: I don't see how blend-specific reviews would affect your relationship with advertisers in any way. All of the advertisers are either large resellers of tobaccos/pipes who have very long lists of what they carry, or else it's Missouri Meerschaum, which doesn't produce tobacco at all. I'm at a loss to see how saying, say, "Pease's new Navigator is just okay now, but I think it's going to be stellar in three years" would have anything to do with your advertisers. . . other than encouraging listeners to stock up and cellar. (I don't see how this differs from featuring McClelland on the show. . . or giving an extended overview of Orlik, both of which have been done.)

    As for #3: The problem with this is that it doesn't help anyone become a more critical smoker and hone their abilities to appreciate tobacco to a deeper extent. If what you love is great, then why smoke anything else? Why learn about other blends and styles? If you're happy with grass clippings in a stone pipe, hurray! I don't think it's helpful to say that if you a love a blend then call it the best in the world and don't even think about it. This just means you're never going to be able to talk critically -- and I mean that in the full sense of the word -- about tobaccos on the show. Which of course may well be the direction you want to take.

    As for the last paragraph: I always do appreciate hearing folks' favorite tobaccos in your Fast Five questions. But too many guests get off too easy. To the question of what is your favorite tobacco, I don't want to hear "a nice Virginia blend." I want to hear a name or several names. After all, if part of the function of the show is to sell advertisers' products, then I think some specifics would help.

    Thank you for listening!

    Bob

    Posted 1 year ago #

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