Things that drew me to this tobacco:
1) The Picture - I don't imagine that this is really the top draw, but I am confident enough in my superficiality that I can say that I just love the picture of this well dressed Frog having a pipe on a log and enjoying his little bit of latakia and cavendish.
2) The Reviews - The reviews that I have read and seen have all lead me to believe that a great number of people want to say something negative about this tobacco, but can't seem to find the words. The rest of the reviewers seem to enjoy it greatly and want to keep it around.
3) Room Note - I always smoke outside (I have not yet been able to win the battle for tobacco indoors) so room note means very little to me. What does mean something to me is getting kicked out of my bed for smelling too strongly of nice English blends. My wife has no taste, but I love her no less for that fact. Besides, it would be worse if she liked it, I don't think we could afford two pipe smokers in our household. The usual English bulk blends I smoke are half latakia. There's quite a kick there for the non-smoker to smell!
4) LOTR association - I am hopelessly in love with the world of Hobbits, Wizards and Pipes. So anyone willing to allude to Tolkien's work at least has my attention.
So, after all of the hype, what did I think. I gotta tell you, I don't believe a person can be truly objective, less so a pipe smoker concerning tobaccos. I know that if I put my mind to it I can enjoy anything from Captain Black to Prince Albert to Aromatics to Naturals...you get the idea. (I have to add the brief caveat that I really have never been able to enjoy cherry blends...cough syrupy. Ugh! But this proves my point more than anything. I try new cherry blends already scowling...not objective at all!) So I decided I liked this tobacco a week and a half before I smoked it when I was hearing it described. (The back of the can is great as well. It is written for someone like me...someone who wants to be drawn into their little world and pretend that a frog really spent four years putting together this perfect blend of tobacco for my enjoyment).
And can you imagine that I really like it? I do! The Latakia is nice and the blend is superb. I love the casing on the cavendish (my local tobacco source swears it to be vanilla...ok) The whole thing is rather nice. It is a nice slow smoke ( a 1.5 hr bowl tonight while reading The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes) though I do have more relights than average on this one...especially near the end of the bowl. I can't decide what it is that sets this blend apart from the bulk tobaccos I usually smoke, beyond the obvious difference in the amount of latakia and presence of some aromatics. It just feels like there is an extra touch of care in it. I can't figure out how, why, or when, but I feel like that goofy little frog actually put some good time and heartfelt effort into blending this tobacco and I'm glad to benefit from it!