Rich’s in Portland, Oregon

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Auxsender

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 17, 2022
910
4,973
Nashville
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Auxsender

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 17, 2022
910
4,973
Nashville
They had some Germains, Wessex, G&H, and Balkan Sobranie tins but they’re also aware of a thing called flipping so they priced accordingly which I kind of love. $45 for a tin of Germains such and such blend. Same for Balkan S.

It was for sure the largest pipe selection I’ve ever seen in real life. Castellos and Radices and Ser Jacopo and of course Petersons and Savs and basket pipes and probably a ton more that I didn’t notice because I was overwhelmed. I got my first Peterson billiard and a basket.
I could have spent hours in there. It was magical.
 

JimPM

Starting to Get Obsessed
Mar 14, 2021
261
1,642
Heading to Portland on Sunday. I know the place but never frequented. I stay in Clackamas so I generally hit Cascade Cigar and Tobacco and would like to check out 82nd Avenue's store.
 

Auxsender

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 17, 2022
910
4,973
Nashville
I met Bill there. Bill has been blending tobacco by hand for over 20 years. He is the very definition of a Codger and I loved every minute of talking with him. He kindly helped me pick out a basket pipe from their GIANT collection of basket pipes. I believe their House Blend is “Bill’s Blend” which he told me he created so “his wife would like the aroma”.
 
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orvet

Starting to Get Obsessed
Jan 1, 2023
237
725
Willamette Valley of Oregon
Rich's Cigar Store was owned by a gentleman named Tom Moran in the 1980s and early 1990s when I managed T. Whittaker Tobaccos, two Portland stores and one in Salem. Tom was a real gentleman. I haven't been to downtown Portland in years, but if something could get me to visit downtown Portland it would be a stop at Rich's! I'm assuming Tom still owns Rich's, I believe he was a few years younger than I am. Tom was a class act all the way, I hope he is doing well!
I haven't been in his store in probably 18 to 20 years, but it was very well stocked at that time. He always had very knowledgeable help and a good selection of tinned tobaccos. If you're a pipe smoker and willing to brave the indignities of downtown Portland, Rich's is definitely THE destination!

There is another store on Barbur Boulevard near Multnomah call Tobacco Town. It is primarily cigars, some cigarettes and microbrews. They do have a few tinned tobacco's and some pipes as I recall. I was in there a few months ago and purchased a can of Davidoff tobacco. Their tobacco selection is pretty limited. They do have a good selection of cigars.
 

Auxsender

Part of the Furniture Now
Jul 17, 2022
910
4,973
Nashville
I used to love going to Rich’s. Glad to hear they are still doing g well. There is another great place on 82nd Ave.
Funny you mention “doing well”. Bill, the manager and longtime house blender who is every bit the Codger pipe smoker, remarked that even he wasn’t sure how much longer they’d be in business. Get in there and see Bill sometime if you’re able before it’s too late.
 

hawky454

Lifer
Feb 11, 2016
5,338
10,221
Austin, TX
Funny you mention “doing well”. Bill, the manager and longtime house blender who is every bit the Codger pipe smoker, remarked that even he wasn’t sure how much longer they’d be in business. Get in there and see Bill sometime if you’re able before it’s too late.
Well that’s a bummer. I live over 2,000 miles away now, so I probably won’t make it any time soon. :confused:
 

hawky454

Lifer
Feb 11, 2016
5,338
10,221
Austin, TX
They had some Germains, Wessex, G&H, and Balkan Sobranie tins but they’re also aware of a thing called flipping so they priced accordingly which I kind of love. $45 for a tin of Germains such and such blend. Same for Balkan S.

It was for sure the largest pipe selection I’ve ever seen in real life. Castellos and Radices and Ser Jacopo and of course Petersons and Savs and basket pipes and probably a ton more that I didn’t notice because I was overwhelmed. I got my first Peterson billiard and a basket.
I could have spent hours in there. It was magical.
That’s crazy. I remember buying my first tin of Germain’s made Balkan Sobranie there for $16.99, which at that time (2012), I was used to Texas prices (and internet prices), so I thought that was expensive. I used to have a friend that worked there, he would save all my favorite Esoterica blends for me in the basement, the catch was they were $40 a bag (very expensive at the time).

They probably have to charge those prices just to make it, which it sounds like they are barely holding on, what a shame. That was one of the best B&M stores that I’ve ever been to.

Did you happen to speak with Bill about Steve Books? A lot of their house blends were created by him.
 

romaso

Lifer
Dec 29, 2010
1,761
6,702
Pacific NW
Did you happen to speak with Bill about Steve Books? A lot of their house blends were created by him.
Steve and Bill didn't always get along. Steve's daughter took over his own business, House of Calabash, after he died, but I don't know if it's still going.
 
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mingc

Lifer
Jun 20, 2019
4,037
11,330
The Big Rock Candy Mountains
Steve and Bill didn't always get along. Steve's daughter took over his own business, House of Calabash, after he died, but I don't know if it's still going.
She tried to keep the business going but from what I saw it did not get off the ground.
I managed T. Whittaker Tobaccos, two Portland stores and one in Salem.
I remember Whitakker! But only the one in Salem. I assume the ones in Portland had closed by the time I started pipes, in the early 2000s.
I met Bill there. Bill has been blending tobacco by hand for over 20 years.
Steve Books was Rich's long time blender until he retired around 2010. Bill did have one blend, Bill's Blend. Steve blended the rest. After he retired, Steve sold some of his recipes to Rich's and I assume Bill took over the blending.
 
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hawky454

Lifer
Feb 11, 2016
5,338
10,221
Austin, TX
Yeah, when I lived in that area, I used to go to Oregon City pretty much every weekend to go have a pipe with Steve at the House of Calabash. He had some amazing blends on hand that he blended right there in his shop. My favorite was a VA blend called Seven of Nine. Irishman’s 5 O’Clock was really good too, he had some aged versions of those blends that were outstanding. I remember he had one blend that had rose pedals in it, I would probably love that blend now but didn’t even try it back then.