Friday, 4 August, 2006
When you put yourself in front of the public eye, poised to be subjected to its scrutiny, if you’re going to survive the ordeal, you develop a thick skin and learn to take the knocks that come with the exposure. The occasional attacks come with the territory, and I can generally take it in stride. Once in a while, though, something just rubs the wrong way. That’s when a good rant does the soul some good. Read the rest of this entry »
Tuesday, 25 July, 2006
More and more often, I read about someone buying a few tins of a new blend, only to put them aside for “at least a year” before trying them. Certainly, I’ve always been an outspoken proponent of cellaring and aging tobaccos, of laying in a store of our favorite blends to enjoy for years to come, but the idea of buying something and not spending some quality time with it in its youth robs us of one of the great joys of aging tobaccos; we lose the opportunity to celebrate and enjoy its youth. Read the rest of this entry »
Thursday, 13 July, 2006
The Classic Collection has been around for a little over three years, now. Last week, I pulled one of the first production tins of Kensington out of the cellar to see how it was doing. The tin I grabbed was just a little puffy on the bottom, brining greater enthusiasm to the prospect of exploring its contents.
Kensington has continued to be quite popular, though I must confess, it’s never been my first choice from the collection. I’ve always tended to gravitate more toward Piccadilly for a lighter, sweeter blend, or toward Blackpoint for something richer, fuller, more complex. So, after I’d introduced it, I’ve all but ignored it until now, having only smoked from a few tins to ensure consistent quality. That’s not to say it isn’t a great blend, or that I’m not happy with it. It is, and I am, but the others have always seemed to call to me a little louder.
What the hell was I thinking?
Wednesday, 12 July, 2006
I had something in mind to write about, but was stopped short by the receipt of some very sad news.
Tonight, I received word that Bo Nordh, considered by many to be the world’s greatest living pipe maker, lhas eft this earth. He’d been in hospital, gravely ill, but it is nevertheless disquieting to know that the inevitable has come to pass.
I first met Bo in 2001 while visiting with the Svenska Pipklubben at their annual BBQ at Bo’s house. He was a wonderful host, a great cook, and an avid lover of jazz and blues music, of which he spoke with encyclopedic knowledge. I cherish the memory of that evening, now more than ever. Read the rest of this entry »
Monday, 10 July, 2006
I just finished puffing on a bowl of my latest prototype blend, Westminster, in an estate Castello Trademark 55 that arrived last week. The first 2/3 of the smoke was sublime – it’s a great pipe – then, that familiar taste of virgin briar emerged, lingering throughout the rest of the bowl. I’ve often noticed this with estate pipes, and am led to think there are quite a few people who never smoke to the bottom of the bowl.