Quite a well rubbed ribbon inclusive of a few twigs. It arrived with perfect moisture for it to be smoked fresh.
The Samsun gives obvious flavour, fragrant, malty and buttery; the butter's the leading flavour from the Turkish side. The Virginia's far from being deterred by it, though: it's a little way behind but it's a definite addition that sweetens the pot. One of my gripes with this is the speed of the burn: fast. And it isn't the coolest. On the positive side it gives me zero tongue bite.
Nicotine: medium. Room-note: pleasant to tolerable.
Turkish Blend? I'm sure many folks would love it, but for me it's better used as a blender. Two stars:
The sun cured, rather floral, fragrant Samsun provides earth, wood, herbs, some buttery sweetness, a fair amount of spice, vegetation, and slight nuttiness and smoke along with some sharp, bitter sourness. The bright Virginia offers a lot of tart and tangy citrus, plenty of grass, sugar, bread, some floralness and tart lemon, light acidity and spice as a secondary player. The strength, nic-hit, and taste levels are medium. No chance of bite, though fast puffing may possibly result in a harsh note. Has a few rough edges. Burns clean and a tad warm at a lightly fast pace with a very consistent, mildly sweet and rather floral, sour bitterness that extends to the lightly lingering after taste, and stronger room note. Barely leaves any dampness in the bowl, and requires few relights. Not an all day smoke.
I don't smoke this stuff all the time but, when I get a craving for some oriental leaf without any latakia or something I usually reach for this. Has almost a buttery flavor and burns quite nice albeit a bit hot if pushed.
I only decided to buy 2 oz of this tobacco to explore the oriental leaf in it (Samsun) without any distractions from other tobaccos, namely, latakia, which is present in many Balkan mixtures and blends. Some times I like doing that just to explore what different tobaccos can bring into a blend, what is gained and what might be missing, etc. In true honesty, I was expecting more sour and zesty notes from it, but then, surely you cannot reach for the moon when the whole point is to explore a particular component as stated above. As for the virginia leaf, just to say it only offers support and that it is not overly sweet. As a mixture I don't think it is worth wasting one's time smoking this tobacco, but I see both aging and blending potential here, so based on that I think it is only fair to give it a rating of 2 stars.
Shag cut in my opinion. Aromas of yeast, malt, earth and wood. Packs well given the cut. I prefer a light pack to off set the quick burn rate. Flavors are wood, malts and a toasty character. A slow cadence is mandatory to enjoy this blend. Fast puffing will muddle the flavors and deliver a mouth biting cigarette tasting smoke. As a standalone smoke this is nice, and as a blend component it works well. Recommended.
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