View Full Version : Pipe Smoking (best bourbon tobacco)

05-24-2007, 20:57
First, I'm about to start smoking my pipe again after a year and two month lay-off. I've been smoking a pipe for 35 years.

While I like Dunhill Light Flake the best with coffee, the BEST bourbon pipe tobacco is Bengel Slices! Buy the non-aromatic/non-flavored brand. You won't believe how delicious it is with Wild Turkey Rare Breed. My wife doesn't like the smell of it since it is not an aromatic tobacco. It is VERY strong. V-E-R-Y!! It is an 'outside on the porch' tobacco and a little amount burns steady for a long time. It comes in a small tin--about 9 bucks for that small chunk of tobacco. But what a treat.

05-24-2007, 22:11
I was curious enough to do a search for "bengal slices". Note variation in spelling.

The first three relevant results follow here (http://www.tobaccoreviews.com/blend_detail.cfm?ALPHA=B&TID=1072), here (http://forum.pipes.org/~discus/discus/messages/24/19459.html?1120496933) and here (http://www.pipes.org/FORMATTED/152.html).

The upshot seems to be that this blend has changed dramatically over time, having started out as the heir to the Balkan Sobranie formula.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

05-31-2007, 16:19
I was curious enough to do a search for "bengal slices". Note variation in spelling.

The first three relevant results follow here (http://www.tobaccoreviews.com/blend_detail.cfm?ALPHA=B&TID=1072), here (http://forum.pipes.org/~discus/discus/messages/24/19459.html?1120496933) and here (http://www.pipes.org/FORMATTED/152.html).

The upshot seems to be that this blend has changed dramatically over time, having started out as the heir to the Balkan Sobranie formula.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

Thanks for the info on Bengal slices. That's the first tobacco I'm going to smoke when I resume.
By the way, I too am a dog lover, as millions are, but I also wrote a book on dogs, "The Well Adjusted Dog." It's about how to perform chiropractic adjustments on dogs. I wrote one for cats and horses as well.

06-03-2007, 12:51

I have taken a liking to something called "Calypso Black" which is a black cavendish tobacco with a wonderful flavor and a great room note. It pairs nicely with ORVW 10yo, and I'll soon know how it pairs with WT Russell's Reserve 90 the next time I smoke.

I read a few of the links that Dave pointed out, and was confused a bit. The bengal slices sounded like something you have to break up a bit with your hands before you put it in your pipe. I was wondering if this might be part of the problem I had with the "Old Lodge" that I bought that seems to burn too hot. Is there a procedure for prepping tobacco before I put it in my pipe?


06-03-2007, 15:41

I wish I could see and handle the tobacco in question.

I was about to refer you to the Wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cavendish_Tobacco)on cavendish. I found it so disjointed, I decided to edit it first. (Yes, it is just that easy for anyone to revise such an article.)

Bengal Slices is not unique in being packaged for sale with the slices still intact. I used to smoke an oriental blend that was packaged that way. It came in a metal box with a hinged lid, and a single, baby, smyrna leaf was carefully placed on top of the slices. The name escapes me.

Any tobacco that is pressed into cake form needs to be broken up to allow even packing and burning. Usually this is done as part of the manufacturing process. However, there is something appealing about the appearance of tobacco in sliced cake form. There is also the practical matter of having the freedom to rub it out to whatever degree of flakiness the smoker prefers.

In general, the more it is rubbed out, the faster and hotter it will burn. However, that may not always be the case. If it's left a little bit clumpy, then the packing is likely to be more uneven. Air pockets within the tobacco can lead to hot spots.

I always preferred completely rubbed out tobacco, so that almost every piece was a single leaf. That way I could pack it more evenly, and I could easily control the draw by varying how hard I pressed.

Too loose, it will burn hot; too tight, it will go out because there won't be enough air flow. Then when you get it just right, be prepared to tamp lightly throughout the smoke to maintain the right resistance as you draw.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

12-24-2007, 21:58
I'm 51 years old and have been smoking a pipe since I was 15. I haven't smoked anything for over a year and half. But (not that anyone cares--just posting this as therapy for me) I'm returing to pipe smoking! I can't wait. I figured I waited long enough to clear myself out (like Clinton, never inhaled). But I miss my pipe and the expensive gourmet tobaccos more than I ever missed a woman! There is nothing--NOTHING--better than a bowl of great pipe tobacco (Dunhill Flake and Bengal Slices are my favorite) and a glass of bourbon--sitting outside on a wooden rocking chair, feet up, and looking into the dark woods. Pinch me, but that will be reality soon. My new years resolution is to start smoking again.
Sloooooooooooooowwww Eddddddddddyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

01-03-2008, 21:20
I have also seen guys take the flake and kind of fold it up and stuff it in the pipe. I have not a clue how to do this.

04-07-2008, 18:28
I should put my first few puffs on YouTube. I know I said I was going to start smoking my pipe again after a year and 6 month layoff. But it will be exactly two years April 30th, at which time I will have four fingers of Jim Beam (aged 8 years) and my new $300.00 Dunhill Pipe in my hand with Dunhill Flake Tobacco. I've been miserable ever since I quit smoking my pipe and haven't smoked anything for two years. I miss it more than anything. I can't wait. But May 1st at midnight I will be out on my porch--weather pemitting in Chicago, and have at it. I should sell tickets.
Oh, and I'll have The Hustler playing in the background. JTS Brown--No Ice, No Glass.
Sloooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow Edddddddddddddddddddddddddy

Tennessee Dave
04-07-2008, 18:53
The best pipe tobacco and bourbon match that I have experienced is your favorite pour and GL Pease Haddo's Delight.:grin:

04-07-2008, 23:27
That's a blend (http://www.tobaccoreviews.com/blend_detail.cfm?ALPHA=H&TID=1424)I don't recall from my long-ago pipe-smoking days (which ended in 1983). It sounds delicious.

Do you happen to know when it was introduced? I'd be surprised to learn that new, quality blends have entered the market during a period of general decline of pipe-smoking.

Never mind. I found an approximate answer here (http://www.glpease.com/about.html).

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

Dr. François
06-03-2008, 12:58
I've been working my way through several blends at my local pipe shop. My favorite so far has been the #17 "Chateau" blend. It is a soft, cool blend with vanilla and cherry notes. I just picked up an ounce of the #12 blend, a heavier, raisiny blend that will probably stand up to heavier bourbons like Stagg or VOB BIB.

I don't like cigars, so I don't look for tobacco that tastes just like a cigar. I look for tobaccos that mirror my favorite aspects of bourbon: vanilla, oak, and autumn.

06-22-2008, 20:35
I have had only limited success at finding a truly outstanding pipe tobacco/bourbon pairing. That's not to say I don't enjoy such efforts, but I'm searching for a really good combo that makes each of them better together than on their own.

I think I came close to that last night. I enjoy McClelland's Arcadia quite a bit, and I've had it with several bourbons. Always enjoyable, but nothing I thought was amazing together. I had a pour of OGD 114 (current Beam release), and decided to light up some Arcadia. I wouldn't have guessed they would go well together, but they proved to complement each other very well. I'd give it an 8/10.

06-25-2008, 10:54
I've got a blend that came as a gift in an unmarked bag, so I'm not sure what it is. It is mild and cool-burning and inoffensive, but it sure won't stand up to good bourbon. At a local dive the other night, I found to my amazement that this blend does pair well with Beam Eight Star blended whiskey on the rocks. (It was Eight Star or Miller Lite. I think I choose wisely.)

That shocked me since I don't think much of the Eight Star to begin with and I usually prefer neat bourbon with my pipe. But the fairly bland tobacco and the very bland whiskey both came to life (or facsimile thereof) when enjoyed together.

Granted, it wasn't the sort of combo you'd sit and enjoy while pondering the secrets of the cosmos. But it sure made for a nice round of Golden Tee with an old friend.

I guess you never know until you try.

Dr. François
06-28-2008, 21:51
A favor:

Does anyone have open tins of the following tobaccos?

Squadron Leader
Navy Flake (any brand)
Sweet Vanilla Honeydew
Blue Note
Maltese Falcon
Anything else super tasty?

If so, I would like to offer a trade. I'll send you 1/4 oz of my local tobacconist's best blend (in my opinion) in exchange for 1/4 oz of one of these tins. Bonus: I'll send you 50ml of a hand-selected bourbon to taste with your new tobacco!

Any takers?

09-06-2008, 08:11
I like Burley pipe tobaccos. No offense toward the technically better and more pricey English and Cavendish blends but I am going to have to voice a discordant voice here for cheaper Burley blends. Some of the over the counter brands, often found at drug stores, better local tobacconists and at on-line sellers like JRs are superb with Bourbon and Scotches. I very much like Walnut, Prince Albert, Captain Black, Sugar Barrel, Rum & Maple, Edgeworth, Granger, Sir Walter Raleigh, Kentucky Club and others of the same ilk. I would just add a caution to sample these tobaccos from the large 14 ounce tins rather than the small plastic pouches as I have found the pouches do not lend themselves to preserving the tobacco well and the tins seem to have a different, better flavor to them. Some of the store blends are also superb but more pricey. I like the Edwards line for those who have a store near them and the Perettis and Leavit & Pierce blends from the Boston area are amazing. Again, the issue is finding a liquor that can stand up to the tobacco and a tobacco that can stand up to the liquor. I feel you will not loose anything with the above tobaccos and may, in fact, find flavors never sensed before while pairing them with Bourbons. For whatever reason I think Bourbons and Burley tobaccos really enhance each other's flavors. They are essentially the products of the same land and the distillers of the past must have had those tobaccos on mind and tongue when they were developing their flavors. Just something to consider.

Dr. François
11-25-2008, 23:28
A new recommendation:

I bought a tin of Peterson University Flake. It's a lightly scented blend with great flavor. It pairs very well with bourbon.

Flake tobaccos are a bit different...the tobacco comes looking like beef jerky. You can rub or break it to the texture you desire. I prefer it to ready-to-go tobacco.

Tennessee Dave
11-26-2008, 09:33
MJL if you like burley based tobaccos do yourself a favor and try Pease Haddo's Delight and Barbary Coast. Both contain cubed burley and a light topping of rum or whiskey. Perfect complement to a good bourbon.

11-26-2008, 17:20
I've heard good things about the Haddo's, but have never seen it. Any suggestions for a place to procure some?

Dr. François
11-27-2008, 11:38
I've heard good things about the Haddo's, but have never seen it. Any suggestions for a place to procure some?

Smokingpipes.com has the best price:

12-01-2008, 17:32
Thanks for the suggestions. I will have to try some and will report back here with my thoughts.