The Emperor's New Clothes, Musings of a New Pipe Smoker

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May 22, 2018
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Cigarette smokers would love the taste of pure unflavoured tobacco. I once said that Latakia is the undisputed king of tobaccos, but if there was a queen it would be orientals. Have a try at something that is mostly orientals and the taste is very inoffensive.

 

bullet08

Preferred Member
Nov 26, 2018
686
1,764
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RTP, NC. USA
i do understand senses involved in taste. sight, smell, then taste. tongue does have regions for specific taste, but they are rather limited. smell and taste work together to give full flavor. yet, i do taste va, and perique. latakia and oriental, i need to try more. i know i have problem picking out latakia with taste, but i can smell it. i used to cook a lot. can pick out specific ingredients from eating something from restaurants. it takes lot of eating and experiences to identify some of the ingredients to recreate at home. i think it's same with pipe smoke. need time and experience to taste and identify specific tobaccos.

 

jttnk

Senior Member
Dec 22, 2017
425
1,091
Welcome, I am relatively new to pipes as well about 1.5 years in. I hated Latakia for about a year. As my technique with packing and slowing down and sipping got better, more flavors presented themselves. Then I tried Edward G. Robinson, a crossover blend. It’s an aromatic with Latakia. It was the best thing I had ever smoked since I started. I now love English tobaccos, balkans, and other crossovers. My taste for aro’s has diminished. Bonus, I have a bunch of aros aging and waiting till my taste shifts again.
Point being don’t toss any tobacco you don’t like at this point, your tastes change. You’ll open up new experiences over time, that’s the fun of this endeavor.
Enjoy the ride.

 

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mau1

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Jan 5, 2018
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Excellent post Mud, and discussion. I also like your attached file; good idea! Your not organized at all :)

 

tuold

Preferred Member
Oct 15, 2013
2,125
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Beaverton,Oregon
Tasting the flavors in tobacco seems to be a much more subtle experience than tasting flavors in food. We use food analogies to describe tobacco flavors but I found that to be very misleading in my early pipe smoking years. Like many of us, I started out smoking aromatic blends because I could easily taste the vanilla or cherry toppings and therefor not much else. Since the flavors that are present in non aromatics really don't seem to have definite food analogs I really had no idea what I was supposed to be tasting. For me, it took a lot comparing tobaccos to develop a sense for tobacco flavors. I still can't really tell what you a Balkan blend actually taste like but I can definitely tell a Balkan from a Virginia/Perique. So I'd say there is absolutely taste in tobacco smoke. It's just that it takes time to sort them out and judge them on their own qualities, not by something you have tasted before.
It really wasn't until after I had been smoking a pipe for many years that I really enjoyed a cigar for the first time. It was a revelation for me at the time. The friend who had given it to me asked what I thought it tasted like. I could only answer him, "Like a steak dinner". It was just a full and satisfying smoke.

 

mudcamper

New member
Mar 22, 2019
19
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Sonoma County
Point being don’t toss any tobacco you don’t like at this point, your tastes change. You’ll open up new experiences over time, that’s the fun of this endeavor.
Definitely. I've jarred everything in small Ball canning jars for just that reason.
I also like your attached file; good idea! Your not organized at all [:)]
Since I am really liking pipes and pipe tobaccos, I've decided to catalog my beginner's advice so that I can share it with any friends and family that express interest.
It really wasn't until after I had been smoking a pipe for many years that I really enjoyed a cigar for the first time. It was a revelation for me at the time.
Yes. I have wondered about that, if I will enjoy cigars more, now that I have had some experience with pipe tobaccos.

 

rfernand

Preferred Member
Oct 2, 2015
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I strongly disagree with the “tastes like nothing” premise. Most obvious in pipes and cigars. In cigarettes, compare a Camel straight, a Dunhill Red, and a Ducados negro. There very different flavors straight from the leaf!

 

mudcamper

New member
Mar 22, 2019
19
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Sonoma County
I strongly disagree with the “tastes like nothing” premise. Most obvious in pipes and cigars. In cigarettes, compare a Camel straight, a Dunhill Red, and a Ducados negro. There very different flavors straight from the leaf!
But cigarette smokers are inhaling. When inhaling, it's almost impossible NOT to get smoke to your olfactory nerves. Thus, full bodied "taste". Presumably, most pipe smokers are not inhaling. The smoke is getting to the tongue but not necessarily the olfactory. Thus little to no taste. (An onion "tastes" the same as an apple remember.)
I have been practicing retrohaling, just a few times per bowl. It does come easier. It does deliver a "burst of flavor".

 

rfernand

Preferred Member
Oct 2, 2015
679
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The perception of flavor is not exclusive to the mouth, we taste with our nose as well. Go eat something with your nose pinched, see what happens. Chances are you did this in your fourth grade science class and forgot about it. Kids lose their mind with this and start chewing onions :-D
You do not need to inhale to taste a cigarette. Treat it as a cigar (which I do when I get a hold of a pack of Ducados Negros or Davidoffs).
The retrohale is indeed giving you more insight into the tobacco you’re smoking. Coincidentally, I’ve just discovered a very interesting spicy quality Of Half and Half that way.

 

deckpiper

Junior Member
Apr 18, 2018
66
1
OP has a lot of good insight, but my first recommendation is to get some high quality Virginia Flake and let it age for a year. Day and night difference.
Frozenchurchwarden: Any specific recommendations for high quality Virginia Flake?
I've been looking for some Samuel Gawith Full Virginia Flake, but it is never available. Starting to wonder if the company has gone out of business. Maybe just not available in the States???

 

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