by Greg Wolford
Several weeks ago on a “junk hunt” at some antique stores I happened across this old Flying Dutchman tin. Being a fan of old tins, nautical stuff and it being priced well I snapped it up. As an added treat I found a few crispy bowls worth of tobacco inside: a vintage blend I’d never tried free with a cool, old tin! Of course I’d have to rehydrate it before I could smoke it but that wasn’t a big deal.
I looked the blend up on TobaccoReviews.com and found this information;
“Rich and aromatic. An old favorite. Burley, Cavendish and Virginia, ribbon-cut, no longer in production.”
After rehydrating this vintage tobacco I found I’d inadvertently made it too moist. I left it in a plastic container to slowly dry back down over the last two weeks. Today it was, to my tastes, perfect for smoking: not too dry or crispy and not so wet as to as the pinch test. So, I loaded up a bowl in a Missouri Meerschaum Country Gentleman to test drive.
As I felt the moisture content, and then loaded the pipe, notes of cinnamon and spice were still abundant, even after all the years of improper storage. There was also a faint hint of vanilla in the background.
The tobacco took flame with ease and plumed just a tad. A tamp and relight and it’s “off to sea” I went!
The flavor profile while smoking was similar to the tin note yet a bit different, too. The vanilla seemed to be the major player with the cinnamon far in the background. After a few puffs a cardamon-like spice began to come into play, just under the vanilla note. This flavor stayed very consistent until the last quarter bowl when it began to become rather flat, though not bitter. While there wasn’t much real tobacco taste, the blend also wasn’t overly sweet, which I appreciated. And it burned to a nice, dry ash with no dottle.
My wife said the room note was very mild and pleasant, which means it would please most anyone: She’s the only person on Earth that dislikes the room note of 1Q!
The blend burned fast, in my opinion, but not hot. Of course I was being careful to sip it slowly as I didn’t fancy being bitten this morning. Although I can’t recall the burn-time, I’d hazard to say it was 50% less than the normal time I’d get smoking a Gent.
All in all, and considering I’m not an aromatic fan generally, I would give this blend 3 out of 5 stars. Considering the unknown time of improperly being stored, being rehydrated, then dehydrated, it held a nice flavor and made for a pleasant smoking experience. I’ll even go as far as to say that it’s a shame it’s not still around to try fresh!