Friday, February 27, 2015

What are you enjoying now?

Why, thank you for asking! I have had some wonderful opportunities to enjoy several bowls of good pipe tobacco these past weeks. This time, historically, had been a time of looking with a jealous eye toward spring. This year is no exception. I long for the warm summer afternoon pipes and late night conversations over endlessly burning bowls of tobacco.  Yet, as Graham Green so well writes in The Power and the Glory: "One of the Fathers has told us that joy always depends on pain. Pain is part joy. We are hungry and then think how we enjoy our food at last."

So my anticipatory celebration in the pain of the cold has consisted of several in my regular rotation.  First, plenty of Edwards Special Balkan. This is a blend that is simply synonymous with satisfaction for me. On situations where it is better for me not to smell like a walking Latakia bomb I have been favoring C and D's Nutty Irishman.  I have been poking through this bag for about a year now.  I bought it loving the smell of the topping, but have found it to be a bit bitey. This was a surprise because the time I had it before there was little or no bite.  I suppose our tastes do change.

Another C and D blend I have been enjoying is Morning Drive Time. I bought this for purely romantic reasons.  The idea of blends that honor the working man was too attractive to pass up.  This VA/perique blend lived up to its high calling marvelously. While Dunhill's EarlyMorning Pipe never lived up to the hype for me, Morning Drive Time fits my breakfast smoke profile.

On the over the over the counter side I have been lusting after another package of Carter Hall, which I love so dearly.  However I cannot indulge in it because I still have a package of Sir Walter Raleigh to get through. While satisfying for that burley fix, it simply is not Carter Hall.  Which I recognize is like saying, "This cup of tea simply is not a cup of coffee!"  Yet in pure preference Mmy mouth remembers something lovely about the simplicity of Carter Hall burley.

Finally, my other old standby, Black Watch from Edwards in Denver. It is the first pipe tobacco I remember smoking. I smoked it too quickly and too hot. It bit my tongue, but at the time I knew no better. The vanilla aroma brings back those first beautiful bowls. Then When I learned how to smoke slowly and enjoy the true flavor of the tobacco in sweet sips this tobacco came alive in new and exciting ways.  

But what have you been smoking, dear reader?