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 I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?

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ZeroContent

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Age : 34
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PostSubject: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:59 pm

Title pretty much says it all. Does anyone have any idea what the oldest blend(s) that are still produced today with the same recipe?
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fsu92john

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:48 pm

I've heard people refer to Grousemoor as the oldest pipe blend still in production--Samuel Gawith's marketing refers to it as two hundred years old, and of course the firm was founded in 1792.
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DrT999

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:03 pm

fsu92john wrote:
I've heard people refer to Grousemoor as the oldest pipe blend still in production--Samuel Gawith's marketing refers to it as two hundred years old, and of course the firm was founded in 1792.

That's my understanding, but I've never seen it 'officially' verified. I wouldn't be surprised if some of their ropes were essentially the same as when they started, in any event. Short of that, several of the McConnell mixtures supposedly date from the firm's start in 1848 (Red Virginia, Black & Gold, Maduro). I don't know if any of Germain's date back to the start of that firm (1820) or not.
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DrumsAndBeer

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:16 pm

From what I understand, 1792 marked the year that snuff making equipment was brought to Kendal from Glasgow. SG mainly produced snuff, and introduced pipe tobacco to the market around 1830. I am not sure where Grousemoor fits in, but 1792 was one of the original blends only it was sold as Cob Plug. The flake version, Cob Flake, was a later product and was recently renamed to 1792 Flake.

I am thinking that some of their twists go way back. Commonwealth Mixture is apparently supposed to be quite old as well.


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fsu92john

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 8:55 pm

It wouldn't surprise me if, as Dr T says, the twists are largely the same now as they were two centuries ago.
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Fr_Tom

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Wed Apr 06, 2016 9:41 pm

For US made tobaccos, I think Mixture 79 is 1849 and Granger is 1870.
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Bugsahearn

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Sun Apr 10, 2016 6:10 pm

That is really interesting that M79 and Granger were started so long ago. Were the blends similar to what they are today? Was the leaf higher quality? Does anyone know what pipe tobacco was common in the London in the late 1880's? It's crazy to me that blends like granger and m79 were around in the 1800's as well Grousemoor and Lakelands!
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Cartaphilus

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Sun Apr 10, 2016 7:21 pm

DrT999 wrote:
fsu92john wrote:
I've heard people refer to Grousemoor as the oldest pipe blend still in production--Samuel Gawith's marketing refers to it as two hundred years old, and of course the firm was founded in 1792.

That's my understanding, but I've never seen it 'officially' verified. I wouldn't be surprised if some of their ropes were essentially the same as when they started, in any event. Short of that, several of the McConnell mixtures supposedly date from the firm's start in 1848 (Red Virginia, Black & Gold, Maduro). I don't know if any of Germain's date back to the start of that firm (1820) or not.

I think, Germain's Uncle Tom's Mixture dates back pretty far being it's suppose to be the founders personal blend but, I'm not positive. scratch
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Vito

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PostSubject: Re: I'm Curious, What's the Oldest Blend That's Still Produced?   Thu Apr 14, 2016 2:54 pm

Bugsahearn wrote:
That is really interesting that M79 and Granger were started so long ago. Were the blends similar to what they are today? Was the leaf higher quality?...


Bugs: Your first question is impossible to answer. Even if any of the originals still survived today, they would have changed with age...well, unless perhaps they were sealed in vacuum. Even then, I'm not sure there wouldn't have been chemical processes that worked to change the tobacco.

So, that leaves memory as the gauge specifically the memory of someone who smoked the original versions of the tobaccos in question. Even if anyone who had smoked the originals were still extant, memory is a fickle thing...and it gets fickler with age.

Nevertheless, those of us who have a bit of pipeweed experience under our belts (52 years in my case) and can still remember what Mixture No. 79 and Granger were like in the 1960s can provide some reference point.

In the case of Mixture No. 79, the last time I tried a relatively recent offering (maybe a dozen years ago), it was unchanged from what it was in 1964. It was never a favorite of mine, but when I was in the mood for an aromatic, it was a decent smoke. I certainly never regarded it with the same kind of bitter, violent enmity that it seems to have garnered these daze.

Alas, I can't vouch for what's currently being sold as Mixture No. 79. The Sutliff brand has changed hands since the last time I smoked it, and that usually signals a change in recipe. Perhaps that accounts for the widespread hatred I see in so many online comments and reviews. It seems to be the tobacco many pipers love to hate.

For my part, reminiscence is a subjective factor that overrides other sensibilities. There are plenty of more recent aromatics I won't go near, but Mixture No. 79 was one of the weedages I smoked when I was just getting started 52 years ago. It was a magical time, full of the thrill of discovering new flavors and aromas, and that's the experience it recalled whenever I smoked it occasionally over the years.

Granger is a different story. I bought some out of curiosity in ~2009 and the stuff was gooped with propylene glycol. It was essentially unsmokable. Another fine old drugstore baccy bites the dust.

There's another drugstore blend Cherry Blend that hadn't changed as of the last time I bought a bucket (~10 years ago). It was made by Middleton in 1964, and it's still made by Middleton, but the company has since been bought by Altria (Philip Morris), in 2007. However, the tobacco is still manufactured in the same Pennsylvania facility, so perhaps they haven't changed it.

It was the very first tobacco I smoked. As my tastes grew and changed, I eventually reached the point where I couldn't tolerate the stuff. But like tobacco, I've mellowed with age, and my natural curiosity drove me to try it again some years ago.

I was surprised. It's not a complex smoke, and the flavor isn't very deep. Nevertheless, it smokes remarkably cool, and as it burns down past the half-bowl mark, some mellow tobacco flavors come to the fore. Although I probably don't smoke it more than once or twice per year, it's still a pleasant experience to reminisce about those early pipe smoking daze.

That's coming from a guy who loves to smoke straight Latakia.
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