Pipes and Lighters Blog

Tasting pipe tobacco

As with many consumables we enjoy, tobacco is something that offers many different tastes and aromas, each unique to their own characteristics.

Much like fine wine, pipe tobacco is something that offers incredible and distinct enjoyment, which you finally enjoy once you bring the lighter to the pipe bowl for a few minutes of pleasure. As with wine, tobacco connoisseurs have come up with a routine that allows you to taste all aspects of the tobacco, ensuring you get maximum enjoyment.

The first step is to open your tobacco and sniff it. This will give you an initial indication of whether you are going to like it or not, as your nose works with other senses to create an impression. Normally, if you don’t like the smell of something, you probably won’t like the taste of it either.

When you are sniffing in search of different aromas, you should try and start with just a gentle sniff, as that way you won’t totally overpower your senses if something catches you out by being especially potent. When you are sure that you’ll enjoy the tobacco, then get to work on filling your bowl before lighting it.

When you light up, the first light won’t be reflective of the quality of tobacco itself. A way to think of it is separating the wheat from the chaff and trimming the excess by igniting loose strands and spreading oxygen through the bowl. When you puff on false light don’t be disheartened by the immediate flavours if it is below your expectations as it will improve as the smoke develops.

Now your bowl is true on light, it’s vital that you do not rush the smoking process, as you could experience the famous ‘tongue bite’, which occurs from smoking too quickly. Instead start slowly and swirl it around in your mouth for as long as it remains pleasant before exhaling, then see if you can smell the aromas in the room.

The aroma of your room will then either be greatly improved or worsened, depending on whichever tobacco you used. It is worth noting that some tobaccos can leave scents behind in the room, of which are not always desirable, though most reviews and details of it will normally give you some inclination of whether this might happen.

As with all new tobaccos, it is worth trying it in small quantities before you commit to larger packs, this way you’ll try more tobaccos and really find out what suits you!

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