Did You Lose Your Taste for Aromatics Over Time?

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jbfrady

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 27, 2023
568
2,091
South Carolina
It's like the Zen Buddhist teachings (and that song by Donovan) say: First there's a mountain, then there isn't. Then there is again.

There's always something you like at first. But then you begin to compare and by default, those things compete. At first, for most of us... we like aromatics. Then we find out about non-aro's and it becomes about factoring aromatics  vs non-aro's. What do we like  better? Which is superior? We treat tobaccos like we have to pick a school to marry, and to whom we must stay faithful.

But after time and space between us and our most recent aro have been had, we try another aromatic and find ourselves enchanted - not by what it offers against non-aro's, but by what it offers on its own. Once this happens, you'll know you've reached a full appreciation of what you're sampling.

First there's an aromatic, then there isn't. Then there is again.
 

tmcg81

Part of the Furniture Now
May 8, 2020
995
15,378
NJ
I think my issue was that I did too much research before I started smoking a pipe and kinda got brainwashed into thinking that aromatics were a)not for beginners and 2) not for SERIOUS pipe smokers. So I smoked anything that had latakia in it for months, until curiosity got the best of me and I ordered some 1Q and loved it. I've found that I'm enjoying aromatics more and more these days.
 

LeafErikson

Lifer
Dec 7, 2021
2,048
17,775
Oregon
I’ve never enjoyed aromatics too much. I came to the pipe from cigarettes and tend to enjoy blends that are cased instead of topped.

When is a tobacco considered topped instead of cased? The line between aromatic and non-aromatic is blurry to me. Obviously a black cav-based blend is an aro but something like SWR or Carter Hall toes the line. The only aros I summarily dislike are the black cav-based ones.
 
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Bbailey324

Lifer
Jun 29, 2023
1,731
22,056
Austin, TX
I mostly smoke English blends and Va/Pers and have for 25+ years. I did start with aromatics way back when, mostly because they smelled good more than tasting like tobacco. This past summer I sampled some full on aromatics and found a few that I liked and have been smoking them somewhat regularly since. That said, I've always kept a codger blend in a rotation like Prince Albert or Granger. So I suppose it comes down to what is defined as an aromatic.
 
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Aug 1, 2012
4,741
5,380
USA
I started with aros and moved away from them. I still enjoy them on occasion but they' not my go-to. Nothing wrong with a good aro at the right time though.
 
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Swiss Army Knife

Can't Leave
Jul 12, 2021
420
1,256
North Carolina
It's always seemed the opposite to me. I really hate that newbs get recommended aromatics because they're hands down the hardest to smoke. You get told to smoke not only the most technique demanding variety but usually the bottom of the barrel of that variety (cheap vanilla or cherry aros).

Maybe it started as some kind of hazing ritual and just got warped into gospel. As I've gotten better at pipe smoking I've come to appreciate them a lot more but I still feel like I'm a ways off from truly getting 100% out of a good aro blend.
 
Maybe it started as some kind of hazing ritual and just got warped into gospel. As I've gotten better at pipe smoking I've come to appreciate them a lot more but I still feel like I'm a ways off from truly getting 100% out of a good aro blend.
We could blame pipe shops like Tinderboxes. It is easy to sell aromatics. Just put them in jars and let people sniff them, picking out which ones they like the smell of, and take their money. But, back in the days of Tinderboxes they would tell you, "aromatic means the way it smells." However today, men buy aromatics thinking they are going to get a mouth full of cherry pie, or apple dancing on the tongue. Yes, taste is tied to smell. But, aroma only goes so far. Mostly what guys report is the taste of candle wax just after you blow one out, because it is pretty darn close to what it is. Your burning a candle, and your taking in the aroma via the olfactory senses, and it translates into taste. Of course, some, a very small miniscule of flavor does touch the tongue, but for the most part, the flavor comes by way of olfactory.

We just don't have that guy at the Tinderbox explaining that aromatic/aroma means smell any more. Again, so that no one gets confused. Yes, you can taste the aroma a little, but for the full sensation of cherry, vanilla, or whatever, it is meant to be smelled, so smoking in an enclosed space will give you way more of that fruity sensation than standing outside and smoking.
 
To test this, buy a lime, lemon, and an orange. Pinch your nose and taste them. Then try to tell them apart. The orange may be the easiest, because it is sweeter, but it won't taste like the orange you know. This is why candy is flavored with artificial stuff (or enhanced in some way), because the aroma effect is lost when you cook it down with sugars. Lemon without the aroma is just sour.
 
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I tend to smoke whatever I feel like and to hell with others poking fun.

Nothing of the sort. Just a general feeling of mine.
I hate that you feel that way, but I agree with your previous statement. Better to just laugh along if it happens, maybe do a little backslapping back.
Smoke with you like, like what you smoke.
image.jpeg
 

Old Smokey

Can't Leave
Feb 29, 2024
380
1,420
The Hollers of Kentucky in Appalachia
I hate that you feel that way, but I agree with your previous statement. Better to just laugh along if it happens, maybe do a little backslapping back.
Smoke with you like, like what you smoke.
View attachment 295701
I believe the feeling comes from growing up with Hillbilly parents. Made a Hillbilly out of me who enjoys the simpler things.
 
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