Now known as Kendal Gold. I suspect the "light" designations on tobaccos are throwing our anti-smoking friends into a tizzy. Very fine shag cut of lemon virginia. As Kendal Kentucky is in my steady diet, I had no problems loading the pipe and it burned easily as well as quickly. This would indeed make an excellent cigarette for those who are into hand rolling.
I enjoyed this blend more for its possibilities than for what it delivered. By itself, the flavor was lightly sweet and citrusy but not terribly substantial. It might make a good palate cleanser or day-starter for those who enjoy stronger blends. It certainly had no glaring faults and can be recommended to others.
When I blended this with Kendal Kentucky is when it showed me its true strength. It provided a measure of sweetness to the KK that made it more of an all day smoke. The only trouble was getting the right combination. At anything other than a 20/80 mix of KG to KK, the KK simply dominated. I ran out of this before I could experiment further but I think there would be some rewards for further tests. 2 stars as a straight smoke, 3 stars as a blender.
I really don't think the cut suits it though. To my mind the shag cut doesn't help a tobacco project it's flavour well and so if you start off with a mild flavoured leaf (as here) they can become very bland.
Also, I find that packing technique is especially important in getting the best out of virginias but shag cuts can make it much more difficult to achieve a consistant pack and therefore have a tendancy to result in a somewhat awkward smoke.
If you smoke hand rolled cigarettes this is better than any of the readily available prepacked pouches you can buy for the purpose and, in Britain, pipe tobacco is taxed less than other forms of tobacco. I suspect that this is the real intended use of this product and selling it as pipe tobacco is merely a way of avoiding tax.
Overall I found the experience akin to getting cornered by a thespian at a party - niggly, irritating and very, very dull.
I have since perfected my shag packing technique and am able to achieve the most consistant and easy smoking experiences possible with G,H&Co. shags. They are brilliant if you like this cut. However, this particular tobacco still lacks interest for me. Some of the flavoured variants are good though...
I believe this has been renamed Kendal Gold as available from Smokingpipes.com. Despite not being a straight virginia smoker for the most part with occasional outings, this stuff is superb! Yes, it's a straight shag cut golden virginia; all the factors to produce a hot, tongue biting smoke but, I just found it to be a superlative example despite that. The quality of the leaf again, superb. Characteristic golden and mildly sweet hay aroma & flavors with a discrete undertone of grapefruit citrus. I could not detect any grassy notes at all. Moderate nicotine levels make it a very satisfying smoke as virginias are in general. The best way of course to smoke this is a slow as possible in a small pipe. I'm sure this would make a great base or adjunct in blending. Very close in character to Samual Gawith's Best Brown flake but a bit more naturally sweeter. What a great virginia I have discovered.
An incredibly finely cut tobacco, very light and bright in colour in the pouch. Aroma is almost like expensive cigarette smoke.
The fine nature of the tobacco comes across in the light room note, but as already stated the similarity to ciggies renders it a little bit more unpleasant than expected from the pouch smell.
The dry thin ribbons pack and light very easily, too easily in fact, it caused me to smoke a little too fast and spend the last third of the bowl massaging a burnt tongue!
The natural sweetness of the Virginias is countered by the immense amounts of smoke produced. Handy as a "change of pace" but unlikely to become a regular in my tobacco pouch. Not tasty enough for an everyday smoke either.
Wonderful Virginia , naturally sweet, tasty and easy to pack and smoke, the first 2-3 puffs I got some soapy taste then it disappear completely, the natural tobacco flavor and taste is delightful, the fine Shaq cut deliver a lot of dense white smoke at the minimum provocation, better to smoke it very solely to avoid tongue pain.
Maybe a bit expensive, but certainly hi quality Virginia.
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