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The Mystery of Flavors

(25 posts)
  1. blendtobac

    blendtobac

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    As I looked at some reviews of some of my blends, I've come to realize that some combinations bring forth flavors that many people insist are toppings, but they aren't. A few examples are that people taste chocolate or cocoa in Chatham Manor. The only top-dressings in that blend are Bourbon and vanilla. Some claim that there's a vanilla top-note in Viprati. Nope. There's no top-dressing at all. I've seen many mentions of cinnamon in Fire Storm, but, once again, no top-dressing. The interplay of the natural flavors often invoke flavors that haven't been added to the blend. Are there any other examples you can think of?

    Russ

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. cosmicfolklore

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    If you think about it, Russ, you did put that flavor there, by combining those tobaccos. Like when an artist doesn't put any paint in the background leaving primed canvas showing through, the artist made it that way; therefore, he did put it there by not covering it up.

    But, yeh, like when licorice is used as a case in a straight Virginia, it doesn't taste exactly like licorice, so someone who may hate licorice may love the blend because it melds with the tobacco flavors.

    Michael
    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. anthonyrosenthal74

    anthonyrosenthal74

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    I sometimes think I'm tasting cocoa in McClelland Blue Mountain. That's just one example.

    Arrrrr, shiver me timbers! International Talk Like a Pirate Day is September the 19th!!!
    Brothers Of The Black Frigate
    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. cortezattic

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    I get a faint aftertaste of strawberry in Rattray's Brown Clunee, and I doubt that it's an additive.

    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 #
  5. cortezattic

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    Oh, in McClelland 2025 I pick-up a gamey taste of stewed mutton from, I think, the Oriental component (Xanthi).

    Also, the aroma of incense is often reported in reviews for a variety of English blends.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    pipeman7

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    Russ, are you blending with Sutliff or Lane bulk tobacco? Couldn't the flavor be from the casings

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. blendtobac

    blendtobac

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    I use what I select. Generally the casings are just invert sugars, although molasses my be used for some Burleys.

    Russ

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    pipeman7

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    I use what I select

    Select from where?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  9. cosmicfolklore

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    Hmmm, so there's a middleman tobacconist? So you don't buy direct from the farmers? I was curious about that. I wouldn't think that the farmers would pre-case the tobacco. Is there a middleman tobacconist that adds casings for the pipe tobacconist?

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. cosmicfolklore

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    Oooops, I may have stepped into the secret world of pipe tobacco that I am not allowed to know about.

    It also kind of explains why, I had a hard time finding a pipe tobacconist that could help me turn my Virginia crop into red Virginias.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  11. cigrmaster

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    In many of the VA and Vapers flakes I smoke, I get flavors of stewed fruit and raisins which obviously are not there.

    For those who don't know what stewed fruit is, let me explain. It is a desert made from peaches, figs, apricots, prunes, and probably one more thing, but I can't remember. You take all those fruits and cook them down in a thick sweet syrup. It is a really tasty desert that my grandmother made for all of the holidays. I taste those flavors a lot in most of the Va and Vaper flakes that I smoke, especially when they are aged.

    Harris
    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. anthony416

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    Interesting subject indeed. It seems that some tobaccos have a wide range of natural flavors in them. The example below from GQ tobaccos relates to cigars but I guess it is the same principle....

    Number 1 Cigar of the Year 2016

    Cigar Aficionado Rated 96%

    "First impressions are bold and savoury with strong notes of hickory and leather but it continues to take on a complex spiciness of saffron and cumin as well as a slight tangy note that brings the strength and spice together - and it only gets better with every puff. "

    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. sablebrush52

    sablebrush52

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    Oooops, I may have stepped into the secret world of pipe tobacco that I am not allowed to know about.

    Yep. And if you persist in this matter you may disappear in the dead of night in a puff of fragrant smoke!

    Blenders buy from different suppliers. This may shock some, but even McClelland didn't make its own Syrian Latakia.

    Very interesting topic!

    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. blendtobac

    blendtobac

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    I choose what is available from the manufacturers I work with. They usually have a number of options in casings, and a large amount of top-dressings.

    Russ

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. cosmicfolklore

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    Well, I figured fire cures (Kentucky, latakias, and even the other leaf that was cured with smoke) wasn’t done by the blenders. Sweats and fermination of goldens Virginias to reds, all of the curing, maybe even the toasting if burleys. But, casing surprises me. I wouldn’t think that the farmers would do that.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. blendtobac

    blendtobac

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    To my knowledge, casing is done at the processing factories.

    Russ

    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. hoosierpipeguy

    hoosierpipeguy

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    While not like funding a automotive assembly plant, there has to be a fair amount of investment at the manufacturer's. Building for the preparation, warehouse for raw materials and warehouse for shipments. Also, the presses and whatever they use for the heating. More money than most boutique or smaller blenders would want to shell out. Not to mention trying to compete with the big guys when buying from the tobacco farmers. So the boutique guy can concentrate on his craft while keeping his overhead under control. Also, less employees to have to hassle with.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. brightleaf

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    Viprati was one of the first tinned tobaccos I bought. I didn't realize until I tried many others brands that it is one of the best. Thanks for sharing some of your topping secrets with us.

    POSSIBLY, contentment is not only the chief element of life, but also one of the very foundations of society. If this be so, then as Tobacco is the enemy of malice, friend of virtue, and a direct cause for content, its use should be encouraged. -J.W. Cundall 1901
    Posted 1 year ago #
  19. cosmicfolklore

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    Thanks Russ, that makes sense.
    BTW, Chathom Manner is top notch stuff. Very interesting that the chocolate notes are a part of the natural leaf. I get them also from some of the Empire Dark Virginia blends of GH&co.

    I guess I just always think of you out walking the fields and barns with the farmers, pointing to what you want, and don't want.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. saltedplug

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    One of these days I'm going to break down and order some of Russ' great tobaccos, despite their provenance:

    2 BlackHouse
    2 WhiteKnight
    2 Viprati
    2 Regional VA/Perique
    2 Pressure-fermeted VA/Perique

    Posted 1 year ago #
  21. cosmicfolklore

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    El Niño doesn’t get much love, but’s a favorite of mine also. Smooth and strong. It mentions Latakia, but I don’t taste it. It just has a smooth smokey flavor, more like what I expect from a VaPer with dark fired. I love it!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  22. leatherman

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    When I first bought McClelland 5100, from the bulk bag at the tobacconist, I got home and loaded a pipe, and I could have sworn they sold me the wrong stuff, because I got a very strong scent and flavour of vanilla. I came to realize this is just a sweet tobacco, and the flavour I sensed was just the natural flavour. Delicious!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  23. 5star

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    La Revancha del Tango - Gotan Project

    "You are remembered for the rules you break." - General Douglas MacArthur
    Posted 1 year ago #
  24. jvnshr

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    A few examples are that people taste chocolate or cocoa in Chatham Manor. The only top-dressings in that blend are Bourbon and vanilla.

    Wow, learned something new today.

    Javan
    Posted 1 year ago #
  25. cortezattic

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    Just opened a 6yr. old jar of PS/LBF and the unmistakable aroma of apricots filled the air. This isn't an unusual tobacco tin note; but in my experience, a first for apricot in LBF -- and particularly strong at that.

    BTW, the lid exploded off the jar once the ring was loosened, and with a force that could have caused injury if the ring threads hadn't still been engaged.

    Posted 1 year ago #

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