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PostSubject: Favorites   Sun Jul 07, 2013 7:56 pm

I noticed something the other day. It was almost startling.

It used to be that a Favorite pipe was pretty much visual & "name/grade" determined. After all, a Saseini 4-Dot's better than a Lorenzo, right ?

But it dawns now that THE key element that makes a favorite pipe a Favorite is the flavor of its briar. Especially after years of dedication to a single tobacco.  When the thinkety brain is looking around, wondering which pipe to smoke, doggie brain homes directly in on the chamber of the one it comes up with. On what it's going to taste like.

Odd watching the way that works. I "knew" (and advocated) that, assuming the airway was OK (and they're all different anyway), with enough age and proper use, the "brand" of a pipe was pretty irrelevant. Now I know that I know it. I'm relying on the part that knows rather than the part that thinks. It's a step up.

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PostSubject: Re: Favorites   Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:33 pm

True. When I decide to smoke a certain tobacco my mind starts to think about which pipe I'd like to smoke but my instinct knows which pipe I should smoke for that tobacco. Taste trumps aesthetic desire.

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Smoker99

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PostSubject: Re: Favorites   Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:53 am

I think that brand matters as far as taste. Some have a very distinctive characteristic. I am making the assumption that it is the way the briar is aged/cured. Hard to beat a Castello for immediate smoothness, and taste, whatever it is they do. My favorites, and what I have the most of, are the old English brands, ie, Charatan, GBD, Sasieni etc. Even some of the old drugstore brands can be good smokers. I think the old ones all benefit just from being above ground 50-60 yrs, and probably smoked into submission. I have bought new pipes from a few makers that obviously were using fresh/green briar, and they just tasted horrible.
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PostSubject: Re: Favorites   Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:05 am

The Italian-Grecian difference can be pronounced at first. As is the taste profile of certain individual makers' pipes. (Voodoo there).

But this subsides with time and use. The single best-tasting Virginia flake pipe I have is an old Caminetto. (Go figure that one). Not supposed to work like that, but it does.

Pipes are female.

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Richard Burley

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Location : North Coast NY
Registration date : 2011-04-09

PostSubject: Re: Favorites   Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:17 am

For me, it's a crap shoot. As far as it becoming a favorite, I now expect nothing when I buy a new pipe, other than build quality based on price--up to a point, then it's prettiness. Castellos, for example, have never really impressed me. They're OK, but...meh. My favorites over time have been the rather obscure Jean Lacroixs. That doesn't mean I wouldn't buy another Castello or that I would buy another Jean Lacroix, but as I said, I expect nothing. So, in essence, I agree with post numero uno.
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Kyle Weiss

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Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: Favorites   Mon Jul 08, 2013 3:29 pm

Yak wrote:
The Italian-Grecian difference can be pronounced at first. As is the taste profile of certain individual makers' pipes. (Voodoo there).

Remember I told you about those $25 basket pipes I found at my local Tinder Box?  Grecian-made ones, no name, smaller pipes?   They are some of the best smokers I've picked up (and in a price range I can afford).  The choices are wide, some drilled good, some not...some grain is jaw-dropping (birds eyes aplenty), some not.  I say "they" because I broke down and bought another one.   Going back for seconds on a basket pipe?  The briar is downright delicious, for someone like me that enjoys breaking in and getting familiar with new (tasty) briar...but the performance? Spectacular.   $25.   :shrug:

Who knows the origin of the briar, or the maker for that matter, but I'll be gunning for a straight billiard or something to round out the collection, especially if they got a batch of "sleeper briar" that might not be perfect, but is oh-so-nice.  

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