The chores are done and it is a nice, albeit cold evening, with dinner about to be started soon, this is the life! I cannot think of a better end to the day than to enjoy a nice evening with my wonderful wife, a good meal and actually having some down time dedicated to relaxing. So before all that gets in full swing, we will start with an equally relaxing review! This evening’s blend being reviewed is from Sutliff Private Stock: Bosphorus Cruise. So settle in and look forward to being with family and friends by the fireplace and unwind and be happy. Come and take a little adventure with me, and the wife just make sure you sign on the dotted line and get your insurance all paid up first and hold on tight.
Pipe: Irish Briar -briar straight Dublin (http://www.irishbriar.com/)
Tobacco: Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Pack method: 3 tier
Strength: mild-medium ending in medium
Flavor: grassy/hay sweetness, tea/herbal notes, smokiness/leather notes, rich.
Taste: Smooth, creamy/buttery, cool, tanginess.
Tin notes: Balanced richness of leather/smoke, tangy citrus notes, and some natural sweetness.
Room notes: It is pleasant, not overwhelming in smokiness, with nuances of hay infused tea notes and buttery aromas. Warning, if smoked indoors it may become pungent or a bit much for some, might be best outdoors.
Notes: The tin notes are complex in aroma and is very appealing to the eye as well. The blend right out of the tin was a bit on the dry side, so you may want to hydrate it a bit. However it packs well and the room note is pleasant and smokes cool. Now let us all indulge in the progression of a bowl of Bosphorus Cruise.
During the first third of the bowl it smokes cool with lots of billowing smoke off the top end of the bowl. The Latakia lurks in the background and allows me to enjoy the nice hay like sweetness from the Virginia mingling with a surprisingly pleasant tanginess and citrus notes from the Oriental/Turkish in foreground. I notice a slight creaminess on the tongue as well as a slight tea, or herbaceous note during the first part of the cruise.
As we move into the second third of the bowl the strength level is changing from mild medium to a definite medium in intensity. The flavor is a little more intense of the natural sweetness as the Virginia is blooming more as it heats up. It is not a lot of overtly smack you in the face sweetness but a rather a nice welcomed addition to help balance out the complexity. Bosphorus Cruise remains a cool, bite free blend, with a solid smokiness from the Latakia that is assertive, yet not overpowering and maintains the body and richness. The Orientals in this blend provide a wonderful creamy texture and a nice slight, tangy, tea note that rounds out the whole experience.
As the bowl reduces to its last third it remains nice and cool and creamy with no bitterness. Bosphorus Cruise continues to maintain a slight tanginess and that citrus note that brings another dimension to this smoke and as they move it adds a level of progression. When I retro inhale I still enjoyed the tea/hay like notes. I also force puffed this blend to see how it would handle the added stress and it still never got bitter or harsh and stayed pleasant which is good for those that puff hard and smoke fast.
So you all may be thinking, “ok already what do you really think of this blend” as I have to far more relaxing yet to do. Okay, okay, I’ll tell you all it’s a blend that would be great for anyone new to Balkan/Oriental blends and I really enjoy it! Bosphorus Cruise is a true mild-med to medium strength smoke with lots of good rich flavor and a positive progression that yields a nice room note. It is a great all day smoke that never overpowers your tongue yet continues to provide a tasty smoke. Keep on puffin!!
Rated: 4 out of 5
The Good Wife’s Review: I sometimes get overly nostalgic with a vivid imagination that makes for interesting mental pictures and thought processes. It is a side effect to having become a certain age. I’ve outlived one parent and the other is unable to be with me other than via phone. So pardon my personal nostalgia interwoven in this review. I grew up with parents who were teachers so when I see certain names, it automatically draws forth images, literary and historical. A name like Bosphorus Cruise is obviously going to send my brain to the Mediterranean and with it the historical references of the spice trade and a certain amount of romantic allure one would expect aboard a luxury liner treating the affluent turn of the century passengers. This tobacco’s odor lends into that mental imagery. So, I could visualize my Dad mixed in with those fine ladies and gents sitting on the deck of an old steamer boat debating some literature or political viewpoint with another passenger who happens to be smoking this lovely blend. It has a surprising meaty sweetness that wanders past and over the railing of the ship. While I admit I am not a pipe smoker myself I bet it would pair beautifully with a strong dark Greek coffee. There is no bitterness or acrid airs about this blend at all. In my opinion, the great outdoors, or maybe even more apropos, on a ship deck is where this blend truly would shine, wafting around someone but still being softened by the crisp airs over water. In my opinion it would overwhelm completely in a tightly enclosed space. However, no true gentleman would be so uncouth as to light this up in a ladies parlor anyways so the Cruise still sails into the evening. I can just close my eyes and imagine myself deck side with the crisp air brushing this scent around, weaving and waltzing through the scene. It is a sheer delight. It is a delicious mental image that makes me glad my husband ran across this blend. It is especially appealing in a classic movie, nostalgic kind of way. I bet Colonel Pickering of “My Fair Lady” would definitely be sitting with my Dad on board a cruise ship having a rollicking good time while smoking this blend.