To Cellar or Not to Cellar

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sablebrush52

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Jun 15, 2013
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jrs457.wixsite.com
Is anyone maintaining a list of recent blends that could be under threat from deeming?
That's a very tall order. I started a list back in 2016 but soon realized that it was an impossible task what with over 6000 blends then available. One way to possibly figure out which blends that you are interested in might be at risk is to go to tobaccoreviews.com and look for the date of the earliest review. GL Pease blends have the year of introduction listed on their review page.
 

sablebrush52

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Jun 15, 2013
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You may not know it...But this question to me is a look back to when I started pipe smoking. For me it started in 1979 - 1998 then off and on...but relighted in 2018...to parallel Cigar's 1980 to today. Working in NY 1985 - 1998 I was fortunate to have walked into many fine smoke shop's, throw in a couple of fine pipe makers and $$$$'s spent...yet I did not cellar at the time..Move to 2018 and a issue of Pipe & Tobacco magazine (and few other's Mag's), dusting off the Pipe rack during the years and this Site relighted my pipe bowl. As I look back...the US tobacco industry, Congress and today's attitude has changed as to when my Grandfather smoked (1920's) to what we have today. I saw this in NY when Phillip Morris in late 90's settled pending law suit's with the states "Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement". Phillip Morris and the tobacco lobbyist was huge back in the day and way before me. Speaking with the pipe shop's owners during my time in NY and when Phillip Morris settled was a sign to what we are seeing now.

So the Question "to-cellar-or-not-to-cellar"....Pipes you can always buy...But with Tobacco (in the US) is what I have decided and have accumulated since 2/2018. I would follow "mos489" sound advice as mine may cost you a relationship.

View attachment 14947
All that since 2018? Yikes, have you been busy! At lease now we know where all the Esoterica went.
 

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Bowie

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Oct 24, 2019
981
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Minnesota
Is anyone maintaining a list of recent blends that could be under threat from deeming?
The FDA has an online database of tobaccos that are grandfathered, but it seems woefully incomplete. Perhaps some manufacturers have not submitted applications yet? I find many OTC blends in there but find nothing from the likes of GLP or C&D.

 

lightmybriar

Preferred Member
Mar 11, 2014
1,280
1,686
I would do my best to search out blends that one day you will want to cellar. I would not cellar anything without first smoking a lot of it to make sure it is a good fit.

If I were new I would check out each genre i.e Virginia, Virginia/Perique, Virginia/Burley/Kentuccky, English, aromatics. I would check out flakes and plugs and other types of cuts. I would be very careful of buying things just because they are allegedly popular. I would use tobaccoreviews.com as a source to find blends you might like.
This is perfect advice! I missed out on a lot of favorites because I didn’t cellar when I was new. If you like something, get two more of it, as you search out more of what you like. When you find something you REALLY like, get a good amount.
 
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karam

Preferred Member
Feb 2, 2019
940
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Athens, Greece
I don't want to find myself in the situation I was when Dunhill stopped production, and cross border tobacco sales were banned in the EU simultaneously - because I live in Greece which is a pipe tobacco desert excluding one very good local brand. I now throw in a tin of Nightcap with every abroad order, that's the beginning of my cellar.

I'm waiting on a bunch of GLP and C&D tobaccos from the US, will try and then expect to cellar some deeply as the prices can't be beat.

It's stunning just how cheap pipe tobacco is, for what it is in terms of quality and enjoyment.
 

paulie66scandinavian

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Jul 28, 2016
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I don't want to find myself in the situation I was when Dunhill stopped production, and cross border tobacco sales were banned in the EU simultaneously - because I live in Greece which is a pipe tobacco desert excluding one very good local brand. I now throw in a tin of Nightcap with every abroad order, that's the beginning of my cellar.

I'm waiting on a bunch of GLP and C&D tobaccos from the US, will try and then expect to cellar some deeply as the prices can't be beat.

It's stunning just how cheap pipe tobacco is, for what it is in terms of quality and enjoyment.
Mind you clarify what is that one good local brand?
 
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jeff540

Senior Member
Jan 25, 2016
456
607
Southwest Virginia
I did not cellar until 2018. I smoked cigarettes early in life, but switched to pipe and cigars in my mid 20s (about 20 years ago). I gravitated towards VA flake beginning with bulk MacBaren VA#1 and then moving to the many wonderful McClelland blends. My tobacco acquisition habits were largely based on prior experience with cigarettes and then cigars, where I would at most buy a box of anything I really liked. For pipe tobacco, I never had more than 1 tin of any one particular blend, let alone a "cellar."

In the years 2016 and 2017 I did start doing a year's end online purchase with a little Christmas bonus money, but that was more just to save money by purchasing in bulk rather than to develop a cellar.

Fast forward to early 2018 and my favorite blender (McClelland) closes its doors to my complete and utter surprise. I quickly branched out and found several blenders that I now enjoy very much, and have put away about 15 lbs (mostly Esoterica).

Brief moral of the story: when you find something you really enjoy in the consumable goods category, stock up because it may not be there tomorrow.
 

jpmcwjr

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Staff member
May 12, 2015
18,531
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Carmel Valley, CA
RE: Tobaccos that'll disappear/FDA deeming as well as market forces.

If you're youngish, I'd concentrate on those blends to sample and bulk up on which will be around a long time. Why buy a pound of something you won't be able to get in a year or two, that you've fallen in love with, and will pine for the next five decades?

If you're on the senior side, buy whatever, unicorns, overhyped blends, aged Penzance, whatever.
 

karam

Preferred Member
Feb 2, 2019
940
3,446
Athens, Greece
RE: Tobaccos that'll disappear/FDA deeming as well as market forces.

If you're youngish, I'd concentrate on those blends to sample and bulk up on which will be around a long time. Why buy a pound of something you won't be able to get in a year or two, that you've fallen in love with, and will pine for the next five decades?

If you're on the senior side, buy whatever, unicorns, overhyped blends, aged Penzance, whatever.

That's a sound idea for sure, but hype is a powerful force and us newbies want to try the legends!

Do you mean avoiding blends from smaller companies who may not be willing/able/can't afford to do the deeming (at least in the US)? I've done some reading and it seems the forces that lead to McClellands closing were pretty unpredictable unless you were right in the industry, at the farmer level.

But even if we did not consider smaller companies, then we couldn't predict whether e.g., C&D (what I'd consider a reasonably artisan but sizeable company - not MacBarren) would discontinue 30% of their range, their less profitable/popular labels. Or, it would be possible but it needs quite a lot of work (research with buyers, sellers and consumers) or confidential information (market shares, sales, % repurchase, volume etc) to make such a prediction.

I think the consensus is that cellaring is good if you like pipe smoking!
 
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cosmicfolklore

Preferred Member
Aug 9, 2013
24,344
23,093
Helena, Alabama
Do you mean avoiding blends from smaller companies who may not be willing/able/can't afford to do the deeming (at least in the US)?
Yes, but not just that. When the FDA thing goes into effect many blends created after... some date... in the past will go away. This will wipe out a lot of very popular and beloved blends. I can't remember the dates... or the blends. I'm old. puffy

I'll wait for one of the guys who remembers these specifics.

But, if you haven't stocked up on some of these, you'll never get to try them again. I think many of the H&H and GLP blends will disappear, and a whole bunch more.
 

karam

Preferred Member
Feb 2, 2019
940
3,446
Athens, Greece
Thanks, better to be realistic than pessimistic. Btw I am a pretty good gardener, I recently received tobacco seeds and will venture into growing it come spring. I expect the curing to be far harder than the growing though, regardless, that's my long-term solution to cellaring!

I don't entertain any notions of making anything close to a proper blend, and no Latakia, but I expect I will be happy having bulk, free, virginia, burley, and oriental. I know you're a homegrower from searching in the forum but haven't had the time to read up properly.
 
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docrameous

Senior Member
May 6, 2019
368
986
Colorado
Thanks everyone for the input...

As I have done a bit more research on this thread, my initial goal is to accumulate enough tobacco for a 25 lb cellar. I am in no hurry and finances are always a factor, so maybe over the next 10 years unless I see that things are getting crazy regulatory wise.

I am guessing that my VERY modest current collection of tobaccos puts me about 1 pound or so, so I have a lot of room to grow particularly as I figure out more and more what I like.

In the next year or so I think I will focus on cellaring some bulk favorites that I seem to always like and can default to.... (i.e. Luxury Bullseye Flake, Luxury Navy Flake, Pegasus, Carter Hall, etc)

Let's see... more pipes, more tobacco, storage, etc. etc. How can I thank you all?!? I'm doooooooommmedd! :eek:
 
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smokiespiper123

Preferred Member
Sep 4, 2019
971
3,800
East TN
My cellar is currently about 5 pounds. Mind you, most was acquired when I took the pipe back up in Sept 2019. I think Im on track for a good supply. I only smoke 1-4 bowls per week, so it should last me a fairly long time if I keep going the way I am.

That said, Im running out of shelf space and need to rethink my storage solution
 
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