Choosing Pipe Tobacco

by | Sep 29, 2014 | Shopping and Product Reviews


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Pipe tobacco comes in many blends, tastes, and aromas. If you’re thinking about venturing into pipe smoking, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the most common types of tobacco on the market. As you become a seasoned pipe smoker, you’ll really begin to appreciate the aromatic blend that different tobaccos can bring. Below are the most common selections of tobacco.

This pipe tobacco is slightly sweet and is flavorful for the taste buds. Deriving from Virginia, where 60% of the tobacco crops are grown, this variety of tobacco is a clean smoke with a zesty and rich undercurrent that makes it a great aromatic blend.

Burley is air-cured tobacco and is dubbed the second most popular tobacco for pipe smoking. This blend originally had no sugar but the added sugar makes the flavor full and rich. Characterized by sweet granola and caramel, this nutty flavored tobacco is light, yet rich.

Cavendish uses Burley or Virginia tobacco, and primarily gets its name from the process it goes through to bring out its sweet natural taste. There is the original English Cavendish and the modern Cavendish pipe tobacco. The original English Cavendish comes from Virginia tobacco and goes through a heating and high-pressure process to get its dark, black tobacco. The modern Cavendish has a stronger flavor than its original English counterpart. In this process, a large amount of additives in the tobacco create a variety of flavors including vanilla, cherry, strawberry, chocolate, and more.

Dark Fired Kentucky
If you are looking for a tobacco with an earthy and smoky note, then the Dark Fired Kentucky would be it. Found in many blends, it is dark and cured over an open fire.

Originally produced in Syria and now produced in Cyprus, Latakia is smoky, peppery tasting tobacco that is too strong to smoke alone. It gets its intense flavor from being cured over an oak or pine fire. You’ll find it blended in English and American Classic tobaccos.

Oriental tobacco is a spicy flavored pipe tobacco that comes from Eastern Mediterranean countries. A blend of English tobaccos and Latakia, it has a hint of sweet and sour. It can range from yellow to brown in color and boasts a strong aroma.

When it comes to Perique, it’s dark, oily and acidic. Home grown exclusively in St. James Parish, Louisiana, the Perique tobacco is known for its pepper and figs taste. As another tobacco in the spice family, it has an extremely bold and strong flavor. While some will smoke it straight, it is best to blend it to reduce its high concentration and powerful flavor.


A third spicy tobacco is the Turkish. It is another Eastern Mediterranean based tobacco that is sweet and spicy in taste.

There are several more tobacco types on the market, but this covers the most common when it comes to aroma, flavor, and blends. If you’re just venturing into pipe smoking and want to find a tobacco that’s right for you, this is a great place to start.

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