Dueling Reviews of the New Stonehenge

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Smoking a Pipe Right Now
Staff member
Nov 16, 2008
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St. Petersburg, FL
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I thought this would be fun. Kyle Weiss is our regular tobacco reviewer, and Fred Brown does the monthly Pipe Pundit column.
Fred wanted to do a review this month, and he and Kyle both reviewed the new issue of Stonehenge.
Spoiler: They both liked it, but Fred actually loved it, and Kyle didn't hate it.
Even knowing that up front, it is still fun to read the two reviews and experience the different writing styles. What they have in common is that they both have a story to tell, and both have a love of quality tobaccos.
Fred's Review

Kyle's Review

 

saltedplug

Preferred Member
Aug 20, 2013
3,560
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Everyone says that Stonehenge is topped in the manner of a Lakeland except Jim Inks on Tobaccoreviews in his 2016 review of the fabled batch from 15 years ago. I'm awaiting his review of the current release. He doesn't say that it isn't topped by Lakeland essence, but he also doesn't say that is, except for cocoa, in very small portion.
I learned a great deal about pipe smoking from the forums, and while growing up took many truths about it as gospel from those who knew more. Since those days I've formed my own opinions, many of which disagree with that training. One to which I still adhere was that the only tobacco worth smoking was not topped or cased; that natural tobacco well-blended would provide all the flavor I would need. Along the way I did smoke topped tobacco, 1792 for one, but about 5 years ago I began to question this restriction. I began to think that flavor is where you find it, and if you find a flavored tobacco that you like, smoke it, because that's all the matters. So now I also regularly smoke Condor, topped with rose geranium, and War Horse Red and Green, the the latter with about three times as much flavoring as the former.
I find flavored tobacco outside the pale only when the additives are so strong that they overshadow the tobacco, such as they do with Ennerdale, from what I read. Although the flavoring is strong in War Horse Green, there's still plenty of tobacco taste. War Horse Red is a step down and Condor another.
The current release of Stonehenge has been greeted with all manner of posts that state, "Lakeland, OMG it's a Lakeland! I'm not smoking that!" The meager cocoa topping hardly amounts to an additive, and if there is something more, it is also very small.
Lakelands are very differently flavored both in quantity and quality, and they vary enormously. Mr. Pease told me that there is a very complex process of security at the Kendal Houses, hiding the flavorings in the barrels such that not even the blender nor the top dog know their origin. There are many flavorings, and the highest application of it by these companies is artistry.
Flavor is where you find it and a matter of personal preference, and to reject Stonehenge because of a very small amount of added flavor is probably not in one's best interest.

 

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chasingembers

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Nov 12, 2014
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One to which I still adhere was that the only tobacco worth smoking was not topped or cased; that natural tobacco well-blended would provide all the flavor I would need.
Nearly all tobacco is topped or cased. In English blends, the taste of Latakia is not tobacco, but the taste of the smoke used to flavor it.

 

josephcross

Preferred Member
Dec 30, 2015
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Smoked my first bowl of SH last night and thought it was great. Throughout the bowl you could taste all the different tobaccos along with the cocoa. The Lakeland essence(floral) was present but never overpowered the smoke. This was my first taste of Lakeland and I found myself liking it. It had me thinking all day that I may have had this whole Lakeland thing wrong. Which in my opinion was the blenders intention. Flavour is everywhere, and am all the happier that I may have more tobaccos to try. Now off to smoke some of my recently acquired Exotic Orange.

 
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