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A totally new concept for the smoker of fine aromatic tobacco. Dark and golden Virginias are blended with black Virginia cavendish and portions of Greek, Oriental, and Cyprian latakia tobaccos. Enhanced with a subtly scented fruit extract. An aromatic English.

BrandEsoterica Tobacciana
Blended ByJ.F. Germain & Son
Manufactured ByJ.F. Germain & Son
Blend TypeAromatic
ContentsBlack Cavendish, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
FlavoringCoffee, Fruit / Citrus
CutShag
Packaging8 ounce bag
CountryUK
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
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Strength
Mild, Mild to Medium
Flavoring
Mild to Medium
Taste
Mild to Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable
2.2
15 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
2
3 star:
2
2 star:
8
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Knightsmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Knightsmoker (165)
★★☆☆
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is really a cross over. The notes call this an "Aromatic English" but I still have not got all the classifications down. It is "English" in that there is Lat. VA, Oriental/Turkish, and Black Cavendish. It is not an English blend in the proper sense because of the casing and topping? These (more than 1 no doubt) are sweet. There is a fruity casing that reminds me a little of tangy citrus like an orange perhaps but that is not quite it. In any case it is not bad overall. The notes say that coffee has been added too. I cannot say for sure here. Yes, I do get a little bitterness and the Lat. is also a little lighter on the smokiness than I think it could be and I know that coffee can fight the smokiness of Lat and and dark fired too. Don't get me wrong. I can also taste the Lat., but it does not dominate. The VA and Cavendish are also present right beside the lat rather than behind it. The smoke is very mild and smooth but it did bite a little. Room note was unacceptable to the wife too for what it is worth.

7 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28795)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

For its vein, St. Ives is good. The trouble is it reminds me a bit too much of 'And So to Bed' which used to be tolerable before they dramatically changed it. Honestly, other than Penzance and Stonehaven, which I have not had the pleasure to taste again for well over a year, none of the Esoterica series really do much for me. They're not as aggressive as the Germain Royal Jersey series and just a bit too much moldy peat and brine to suit my tastes. If you're an Esoterica lover, St. Ives is a good selection, but it's for a very specialized palate.

Two and a half of five stars

7 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28795)
★☆☆☆
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

New Review 08/16/10

Its amazing how a blend can change in 5 years and changed it has. I ordered an 8oz bag recently and St Ive's is no where to be found in this bag of St. Ives. Rather than the whimsical cross over blend of the past and in its place is an innocuous, bland replacement that carries none of the English or Aromatic qualities of its former self. The tobacco is good quality tobacco but its as if they forgot to blend in its soul. I'm changing my recommendation from Highly Recommended to not recommended with one caveat; its recommended as a blending agent for those bitey aromatics that sting. This makes a great blending tobacco since it has almost no taste of its own beyond dull tobacco. I've mixed it 50/50 successfully with one such blend and the results were great. The blend just tastes like a smoother version of the aromatic.

Review fr0m 8/28/05

Like Sceny, I have a hard time classifying this blend as it is a true cross over blend though if pressed, I would say it?s essentially an English with an Aromatic topping. Opening the pouch, a whiff reveals that familiar Esoterica aroma with a fruity note. It also has that typical Esoterica moistness, which some think is too much but I think is just right. Of all the Esoterica's I've tried, this is closest to Pembroke and if you like that, you'll probably like this. I happen to love Pembroke and this was a nice change of pace. It's is flavorful while at the same time being mellow and it's very much suited to an all day smoke. It has enough depth of taste to keep you satisfied without being heavy. The blend provides zero tongue bite from the top to the bottom of the bowl. Through the bowl, the flavors change slightly but without a lot of complexity. St. Ives smokes more like a refined English than any aromatic though oddly enough I find the room note to be more aromatic than English but only slightly so as both sides make their presences known. If you are looking for something different (or looking for something similar to Pembroke) give this a try. Simply wonderful!

5 people found this review helpful.

jvnshr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jvnshr (23)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Smoking Esoterica Tobacciana St. Ives is like eating an expensive steak for which you try to convince yourself that it deserved the amount you paid for it. Somewhat Recommended to the ones looking for a transitional blend between Aromatic and English (mostly English).

4 people found this review helpful.

Bonneville Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bonneville (50)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Smoked Honey! Yum! If someone took a honeycomb then hung it up in a Turkish smoke house for a day, then blended it with tobacco, this would be the result. I'm not huge on most Latakia blends; but this one is delicious and holds my interest as much as Frog Morton Cellar does. It's extremely under-rated in my opinion, as are most Esoterica blends that are not Stonehaven or Penzance.

If you like Latakia with a touch of sweetness, you can't go wrong here. Smoke it slow, as there is a rather high Virginia content (which adds to my enjoyment, I might add).

Pipe Used: Rattray's Craggy Root

Purchased From: Beehive Cigars, Salt Lake CIty, UT

4 people found this review helpful.

Arkie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arkie (129)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Full Strong

The blending house's description sounds heavenly but this stuff doesn't attain those lofty heights. It tastes and smells like cigarettes.

4 people found this review helpful.

aadelma Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
aadelma (66)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A very interesting tobacco, it is a bit like Pembroke Lite. If you find Pembroke too heavy, try this medium english blend. It is very sweet and the fruit topping is subdued, but like most sweet blends, it has more bite than I would like. The combination of sweetness, latakia, and fruit flavor reminds me a lot of hookah tobacco. If you like hookah tobacco, you will like this blend. If you want a real change of pace and like english blends, you will like this as an occasional smoke, as do I.

4 people found this review helpful.

Demetri Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Demetri (113)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I do not wish to insult those before me here who enjoy this blend, but I must have lost my mind overpaying for 4 ounces of this "to try". I should have purchased two or, better yet, begged a bowlful to try at the shop first. It's a hybrid to be sure and one that misses the mark for me. But then I'm a straight English lover to start with. As an aromatic goes, it is one. As an "English, it sort of fits that as well. But the two do not marry well for me. Almost immediately after lighting this became very distasteful. I was rewarded with what would be an unpleasant (for hours after) aftertaste while I was smoking. I tried four bowls, at different times of day to the same result. It also while I was smoking, and after, left an odd gummy feeling in my mouth similar to that imparted by cheap, cut filler imported cigars. The 'frugal Hellene' in me dictates that I waste nothing however I know I'll never touch this one again. What to do with remainder of my test purchase? I might soak it in water and use water as garden fungicide or insecticide.

4 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28795)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

From the company that gives us Penzance and Stonehaven comes another winner- St. Ives.This is not a blend for everyone, as it is one of the truest crossover mixtures on the market.It is not heavy on the Latakia nor is it cloyinginly sweet with the fruit topping that is so wonderfully applied. It is a very "English blend from England". If you are not sure what that means let me clarify. This is smooth, mild, and very flavorful in a blander, less aggressive way than let's say an American crossover such as "Count Pulaski". In "The Count" your really taste the Latakia and The Anise. It is a flavor forward blend. St. Ives is rather restrained in its presentation. The latakia makes itself known ,but never screams out at you. The fruit topping is flavorful and refreshing, not sweet like fruit punch.Those who appreciate "Dr. Bradley" by Iwan Ries should find this an excellent addition to their rotation. This blend has ZERO TONGUE BITE!It smokes cool and burns a little quick due to the ribbon cut. Room note is both aromatic and English. Unfortunately, it can usually only be purchased in 8 oz packages. So, If you are adventurous and looking to amp up you aromatic side or tone down your English side this is for you. I truly enjoy this. 4 of 4 stars!

4 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (888)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

Picked up an aged bag of this some months ago and have smoked about half of it and gave away the other half. This is mostly a darkish brown color with some light specks in a weird cut that is a cross between a massively broken flake and a choppy ribbon cut. The smell in the bag is kind of nonchalant, with a hint of cloves and fruit.

A crossover blend with latakia and fruit - tastes like some sort of berries with some sour apricot thrown in. The description states coffee and I don't really pick up that taste exactly, but I do get a sensation of coffee bitterness within the latakia's smoke. Light latakia and the orientals are almost non-existent in taste but do show up in the room note. Throughout each bowl, I got a sense of stewed fruit which oddly enough was more pronounced with each relight for a few puffs. Stewed Relights - what a weird concept. The base Virginias seemed boring overall, with a few blades of grass, a clump or two of earth and a basic hay-like presentation. This one, along with most of the line, tells me that Stonehaven is their crown jewel. Penzance is good, too, but most of the rest of the line is inconsistent and odd, albeit kind of unique. I like the concept of the crossover blend but most of the time it just doesn't work for my taste buds. But try it if it interests you. It's a well put together blend, but doesn't generate any enthusiasm on my part.

3 people found this review helpful.

Subvet642 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Subvet642 (1)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

Based on recommendations I dried this out quite a bit first and then packed it normally. The first thing I taste is high quality tobacco and I know that I'm gonna at least "like" it. It burns very cool in spite of my near constant sipping. This is a well balanced blend. I found that the Latakia is very present but not overpowering, playing well with the Turkish and Cav. It's everything I want in an English, but this has even more. The flavoring elements are subdued and quite nice; just enough to know that they're there; I pick up berries, primarily. It lit easily and stayed lit. I don't know why this tobacco gets such a bum rap, it's something I'm going to try to keep around. Think of it as an English with plus flavor but not goopy flavor.

Pipe Used: T. Christiano Rusticated Bent Dublin Setter

Age When Smoked: 52

Purchased From: Iwan Ries & Co.

3 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28795)
★★★☆
Mild Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

This is one tobacco by Esoterica that I can't really classify. Is it English? Aromatic? Virginia with additives? There are so many different flavors, with no one standing out, that it's difficult to say for sure. The smell in my sample baggie is rather mild, somewhat leathery and fruity and sweet without being musty at all. The leaf is dark, mainly medium and dark browns with some lighter brown strands also present. The cut is interesting, being a soft, partially rubbed-out cake mixed occasionally with hard, black flakes. The rubbed out portion is narrow in width and of varying length, short to rather long. The moisture level is about average, though the unrubbed cake is more damp, and the tobacco packs fairly easily. It lights quickly and burns very well, needing less than the average number of relights. In the first third of the bowl, the flavor is very mixed. I can identify the sweet, fruity casing, but it is rather subtle and quiet. I can also taste the Latakia, but only as a part of the mixture rather than a dominating factor. The Virginia and Cavendish flavors are also notable, mixing well with the other tastes into a rather pleasant, intricate blend. The smoke is very mild on the mouth, having no bite at all and a very smooth taste. I really can't decide what type of blend this is supposed to be: English, aromatic, adulterated Virginia...? In the second 1/3 of the bowl, the sweetness is not as obvious, becoming a more sour and less fruity note. The Latakia and other tobaccos are still mixed, with no one flavor being prominent. There are no bite or moisture problems to this point. In the last third of the bowl, the taste hasn't changed much. The sourish note is still strong, and the other flavors remain well-incorporated into the overall taste. That taste is good, not overly complex but mild, well-balanced and interesting. I would hesitate to call this an English blend, if only because the Latakia is so subdued. A bowl of this burns very quickly but smoothly, even in a large pipe, and is dry right to the bottom. Overall, this is a hard tobacco to categorize. No one taste is prominent, except the sweetness at the very beginning. A full blend this is not, but I could easily see this becoming an all-day smoke for me, or perhaps a morning Latakia treat. Not bad, and I'll consider ordering more of this in the future.

3 people found this review helpful.

meurer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
meurer (1)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is the WORST tobacco I've ever tried. It literally tastes like the butt-end of a Camel Blue cigarette. Horrible, I honestly find this blend to be an affront to pipe smokers if nothing else. Even though they call it a fruity aromatic, and the fruity smell does come through in the tin aroma, the actual flavour couldn't be further from that. No matter how much I tried I could not get any fruit flavour to come through, instead it just tastes like a cigarette, and possibly worst than that. Come to think of it I'd take some of the Brazilian rope-tobacco-based cigarettes any day over this trash. This is trash and I recommend you pass on trying it. There is literally nothing good that I can say about this blend.

Pipe Used: Sara Eltang bent dublin

Age When Smoked: 4 Years

2 people found this review helpful.

HabaneroHardy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
HabaneroHardy (171)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

I was given a couple of bowls of this a few weeks ago and tried it out in a corn cob. It has a sweet grassy smell, shag cut and smoked smooth and mild. The first thing that came to my mind concerning the topping was ‘Juicy Fruit’. This is an okay blend but I found myself wanting to hurry up the second bowl so I could go on to something else. Glad I had the experience but this flavor combination is not for me.

Pipe Used: Corn Cob

Age When Smoked: Unknown

2 people found this review helpful.

Rustedrailsmokes Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rustedrailsmokes (145)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I received a sample of St. Ives and was happy to get to try some without investing in an 8oz bag.

The cut is shag-like. Bag note was spicy and sort of fruity. Moisture was great. Easy to pack, wanted to clump together a little. Lighting was quick, charred, tamped, and light and go.

Taste wise this one is interesting. The background is highly reminiscent of Margate. Where Pembroke adds Cognac to Margate, I'm not sure exactly what was added to the English background here. Dark Fruit overnotes to me a little bit like Raisin? Spicy hints here and there from the orientals. Together, a little odd at times, like it really can't figure out what it is.

Left quite a bit of moisture (needed a few cleaners during the smoke) but burned down to nice grey ash.

This is one that I'll have to come back to later once I really decide what it is.

Pipe Used: Small Bowl Canadian and Fat Author

Age When Smoked: Aug 2019

Purchased From: gift

Similar Blends: Esoterica Tobacciana - Margate.

1 person found this review helpful.