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For over 200 years, Samuel Gawith & Co. have been producing fine pipe tobaccos that have been enjoyed by all walks of life the world over. In the mountainous Lake District of Cumbria, the generations of Gawiths have been hand cutting, stripping and blending their tobaccos. For over two centuries, the blenders and spinners of Samuel Gawith, Kendal, have been producing the famous Kendal Twists. Coal miners, both underground and on the ground, have been chewing our Pigtails , whilst pipe smokers have savoured the rich flavours and slow burning characteristics of the thick Brown No.4 and Black XX.

All of our twist tobaccos can be smoked either flavoured or un-flavoured. Some of our popular flavours are black cherry, rum, whiskey and apple. All twists are available pre-packed or on the roll. Because the process is almost entirely by hand, quality control ensures consistency of excellence.

Notes: Categories refer to the thickness and colour of the twist. The Brown No.4 does not undergo any heat treatment and has full tar and nicotine content of the tobacco. The Brown No.4 is a thick twist. The Black XX is an extra thick twist. The Black XX under goes heat treatment that creates the black colour and less tar and nicotine than the Brown No. 4. All Samuel Gawith Twists are unsliced.

BrandSamuel Gawith
Blended BySamuel Gawith
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
ContentsVirginia
FlavoringNone
CutRope
PackagingPre-packed (tins) or on the roll
CountryUK
ProductionCurrently available
Product Image
Strength
Very Strong
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Full
Room Note
Strong

Favorite Of 5 Users

2.9
98 reviews
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35
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2 star:
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Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1005)
★★☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Pleasant

I opened the tin and thought a dog had pooped in it. That's about the best way I can describe the visual presentation of the black twisted rope tobacco inside.

It took forever to get the oily, black tobacco prepared for loading. I used a small knife to slice off a swack and then spend forever whittlin' it down to shavings small enough to fit into my pipe. It took forever to light, too.

Once I got a decent burn going and actually began smoking Black XX, I realized that preparing the leaf for smoking was the easy part. The first time I blew smoke from my nose, I singed every hair in my nostrils - this stuff is spicy!

I am all for nicotine and thought I could handle that drug in any measure. Boy, was I wrong. I started to hiccupp after about the 10th puff. I was swoonin' and droolin' by the 20th puff. Don't ask me what happened after that because I don't remember.

The room note was pleasant as was the "all tobacco" taste. It is so unique that I urge you to try it once. And believe me, once was enough for this cowboy.

I admit it, Black XX rope made me cry uncle. I don't think I'll need another smoke for at least a week.

11 people found this review helpful.

Smoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Smoke (7)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I would first recommend dry it good so its not hard to keep lit. Maybe an hour, you dont want to over puff this. Once going I really thought it had a sweeter taste than the smell , I would say molasses, dried friuts , dates, figs as well . I enjoyed it much and think of it like a good Scotch you sip. The nicotine in this is what can get you and it will creep, also had I dried it more I wouldn't of over puffed and forgot the high nicotine centent .

4 people found this review helpful.

Pipe4ever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe4ever (198)
★★★★
Overwhelming Extra Strong Overwhelming Strong

This is for those experienced pipers who like strong cigar like tobacco. Just cut some and let it dry a bit, this has many flavor and nuances, to be enjoyed any time when you fell the need for nicotine and dark deep flavor.

4 people found this review helpful.

Wiseguy1982 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Wiseguy1982 (23)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Very Strong

The tin was fairly easy to open, but bends easily.

The tobacco laid there, looking at me with a cantankerous grin. Like a pretentious turd. (Sorry, everyone is right, this looks like poop.)

The tin note was strong, oily and heavenly.

Man, this stuff is thick! I sliced off a couple of coins, and proceeded to disassemble them completely. This left me with a lot of nice thick ribbons, maybe too thick because they wouldn't stay lit, even after a night of drying. The tobacco had a wonderful silky texture to it, and packed effortlessly.

I got some good smoke out of this bowl though, much better than the first. I just don't think I grasp the preparation yet. I mean, at least it smokes, but practice makes perfect.

The first few puffs upon lighting reminded me of a strong cigarette. Not entirely offensive, seeing as this is a no holds barred, straight up tobacco. As the bowl progressed, and tamping ensued, I was beginning to finally find the charred meat flavor. This stuff is definitely not for wimps. Thank god I have brass balls. Nicotine and I are the best of friends as it is, so that cantankerous grin faded to brilliant white ash. Just beautiful. I smoked this on an empty belly, which I filled with coffee as I smoked. Not that scary. I even inhaled a little bit and it wasn't too bad. I try that with everything I smoke. If I can't stand it after that, it's bad, but this is glorious.

The flavor doesn't waver too much in this, but my god, I haven't been in such a blissful state since my first CC which was a Cuaba soloman. I could smoke this before bed and sleep for a day, why do I have to go work?!

The overplayed reviews of being similar to motor oil, burnt meat and other lack luster phrases have been swept away. I even found some raw sweetness here, it was wonderful. I think this is a creeper.

I can certainly see how many puffers would not smoke this every day. However, I am not one of them. This is going to become a staple I think, if I can ever get the prep thing down pat.

If you have a problem going #2, this will help. It's strange how tobacco does that. EDIT:

Oh sweet Jesus! Just finished the most perfect bowl of this stuff! I used a thinner cut on the coins this time and didn't rub them like I did last time, I actually "rubbed" them instead unfurling them, and let them dry for a couple of hours in the open.

Once again, because I fear nothing, this was on an empty stomach with strong coffee!

I feel simply euphoric. I definitely cannot smoke this if I have to work on the same day. Too much euphoria and a heavy desire to slumber.

I can't believe I forgot to mention this, but there is absolutely NO lakeland essence in this either.

3 people found this review helpful.

Ben Rich Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ben Rich (34)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Very Full Pleasant

Sometimes I think people allow appearances to cloud their judgement. I've been smoking SG's Black XX for about four years now, not very often (daily) but regularly (two to three bowls per fortnight). In my experience, Black XX is consistently very flavorful; I get hints of burnt caramel, sweet toasted oatmeal, toasted whole wheat bread and always a very very pleasant spicy overtone that reminds me of cinnamon. I have never found it to be harsh or overbearing in any way nor have I found it to be too strong in nicotine (however, I have a strong tolerance for nicotine and blends that give some people the sweats will not even register with me). I used to cut the "rope" into coins and then cut that into quarters; I learned through time that the easiest manner for me was to simply cut the rope into chunks measuring about half an inch and then pull that chunk apart and further shred it with my fingers to the point where I can stuff it into a pipe. A chunk about a half inch will perfectly fill a large group five bowl and and a leisurely smoke in a bowl this size will last about two and a half hours. Again, appearances can be deceiving; the room note from Black XX is (at least to my nostrils) slightly floral and very light. My wife vastly prefers the aroma of burning Black XX to the aroma of a Balkan (or English) blend; she has even commented on how pleasant the aroma is compared to those blends. While my favorite blends are the Balkan/English mixtures, I could be content with just Black XX. It always provides for a good full flavorful smoke with no bite and no hassles.

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipeline Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipeline (206)
★★☆☆
Overwhelming None Detected Very Full Very Strong

I guess strength and flavor are matters of personal opinion after all. Whether you will find this as potent as I did remains for you to decide.

All I know is that I loaded a group three sized bowl fully dressed and in my right mind. At the end of my smoke, I found myself clothed in nothing but my BVD's and hiding behind an avocado tree in my backyard warding off fruit rats with a pen knife.

Tasty.

3 people found this review helpful.

LordByron Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LordByron (1)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Another one of a kind offering from Gawith… I have not reviewed anything in a while since I have been on a cigar break but I still enjoy my pipe and this one is worthy of a few notes. Black XX is truly an unusual tobacco that has many nuances for the “seasoned” pipe smoker. I have always been a fan of Lakeland blends and had yet to try this one until recently. The presentation is amazing. I bought a bulk box from Mars and it was about a 15 inch long rope curled up in a bag inside a box with the Aston Villa colors on it. The smell to me was sweet and earthy. Others have mentioned machine oil and all the rest but I did not detect anything other than pure tobacco with a mild smoky scent to it.

To prepare I sliced off a 4 inch piece and then began to cut thin slices off the rope and rubbed it out to dry. While it was drying I prepared the rest of it (and the 500mg of Dark Flake scented I purchased with it) for aging. Mine came with only a moderate amount of moisture so once it felt like it was about to get crunchy I figured I would give it a go. The rubbed out slices produced a fine shag so I loaded it lightly into a Stanwell that I have had for years that always gives me a good indication of how a tobacco will behave. It was the perfect choice.

Upon light there was an unpleasant taste and aroma to be honest. I am very familiar with Lakeland offerings and expected that. They always seem to hit you off guard at first but after two more relights I was on my way. Black XX has a very distinct taste and aroma that I have not tasted with any other tobacco. Cigar like, yes I can see that. The taste is similar to a maduro at times but what I noticed more was the faint sweetness of dark VA with a clean burley like undertone. There is no “Lakeland essence” here just a dark sweet clean tobacco taste that stands alone and is very tasty.

As the bowl progresses the strength increases as does the sweetness of the VA. It is a musty sweetness that is mellow, subdued and somewhat masculine. I like to place the tip of my pipe up to my nose and slowly breathe in, not drawing smoke but catching the aroma from the stem. If you are familiar with good Virginias you will know what I mean and this one is dark, full and very pleasant. The room note (or garage note in my case) is a musty earthy scent with a slight floral top note which I did not taste during the smoke.

Is it strong? Yes, I would say so. It’s the kind of smoke that takes the edge off. No hiccups or anything like that, not quite sure what those guys were doing. It just mellows you out. I enjoy strong smokes such as 1792 so I sat back and sipped this one and it put me in the zone fairly quick. There is definitely strong nicotine in the taste and on the palate but its manageable with slow smoking. This is one that you should take your time with both in prep and smoke time. It has to be dry and you have to smoke it slowly. A cool dry strong sweet smoke will be the result, a true pleasure.

Bottom line, this is a unique smoke that is strong, creamy and full bodied with a sweet mustiness that is downright delicious. If you are a true pipe smoker you should try this one. Match it with a good beverage and enjoy it for what it is. Patience and prep time are essential but you will be rewarded for your efforts.

Pipe Used: Stanwell

Purchased From: Marscigars

2 people found this review helpful.

Ambush1964 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ambush1964 (5)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is my first review, and I'm a newbie smoker as well. This is the first twist I have tried. I like the idea that it was made the same as a couple hundred years ago. I imagine this is the type of tobacco that mounain men here in Montana/Montana Territory/ and before carried with them, very robust and easy to keep fresh. It could be used as chew, or in a pipe. This does look like fresh bear or wolf scat, very dark and oily. It has a tin note of a slightly sweet open fire cooked meat, with a bit of wet pine sharpness to it. Those of you who have tried to use damp pine for wilderness direct fire cooking will know what I mean. Don't let this dissuade you from trying it. My brother and I sat down for a break in our online gaming (yes, gamer/computer geeks here). I cut a few thin coins from the tobacco rope with my pocket knife and rubbed them out, stuffed the pipes, an average sized Comoy's Canadian for me and an average size Savinelli Church Warden for my bro. I loaded mine with less than half a bowl (again I'm a lightweight). It took some doing to light and when the heat hit it, it swelled up and made a tight draw. I did not dry the tobacco at all before loading the pipe. I loosened the pack a bit, tamped lightly and lit it again, success. The smoke was a slightly sweet smoky meat, beefy, bacon and dark fruit. I had to re-light several times, but it was worth it. This is one of my favorite tobaccos so far, I have tried the gamut of pipe tobacco types, about thirty different tobaccos. This is however, the strongest nicotine hit, second so far is Petersons' Irish Oak.. I got a bit dizzy, but was cautious as I figured this for a strong tobacco and avoided any unfortunate spewing. My brother tried this with a full bowl in the Church Warden pipe. He smokes strong cigars, and a lot more than myself. He liked this better than most pipe tobacco, as he thinks pipe tobaccos taste more like cigarettes. He is a Marine and much more determined than I, and finished his pipe and the end of my own. It hit him like a bear swat with it's nicotine as well, and somewhat impaired his online gaming for a short time after our smoke/bourbon/scotch break, (I had bourbon, he had scotch, only one each, not the booze but the tobacco hit). I really enjoyed this tobacco and would highly recommend it, albeit in small doses, except for the hardcore smokers.

2 people found this review helpful.

Wellpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Wellpipe (48)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

Not for wimps. Black, oily, full, but not (quite) as horribly strong as it looks. Take a tour back in history and taste what generations past have known as real 'baccy. In a way it reminds me of real licorice with its unapologetic strength and simplicity. We are fortunate that Gawith is still making this magnificent blend so we can enjoy the legacy and for a few glorious moments travel back in time.

Update 2/11/2013: After enjoying an overly large bowl of this filled to overflowing I have updated my strength rating to 'Very Strong' for the nicotine. I need to remember to enjoy this one in modest volumes. Yikes.

2 people found this review helpful.

DaveS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DaveS (11)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Strong Extremely Mild Very Full Strong

ARE YOU KIDDING ME. VERY STRONG. Does not taste like tobacco. Ruined 2 pipes with it. Now because I'm an idiot, I'll probably never taste food again.

2 people found this review helpful.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Extremely Mild Very Full Strong

Hey if you are up for a challenge and have smoked the strongest flakes without a whimper, this may be your smoke. I have tried to find a reason to try this again but I will have to wait until I forget what happened the first and second time this was attempted. There are just too few pleasurable moments involving this product. That being said, if you are a real man (puff-strut-flex, etc.) then go for it! I recommend you try to sample it before you buy more than you can smoke in a lifetime. (one tin!)

2 people found this review helpful.

Warwick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Warwick (20)
★★☆☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Very Full Very Strong

Maybe something happened to my piece of Black XX at the factory before it made its way into the tin, but I did not find the flavor primarily tobacco-like. Instead, the flavor and room note are reminiscent of burnt machine-oil.

This is in contrast to its counterpart, SG Brown Rope #4. The Brown Rope has a wonderfully strong, unapologetic, all-tobacco flavor.

Neither Black nor Brown tend to bite. The Black XX smokes smoother than Brown, and it doesn't have the nicotine peppering the tongue as much, although it is certainly almost as strong. (It took me quite a few bowls of each kind of rope to acclimate to the point where the nicotine no longer prevented me being able to walk around as I smoked them!)

Unfortunately, the Black XX simply has a foulness to it - this burnt oil, burning plastic kind of ambience - which is downright nasty and which lingers in my mouth afterwards.

This could all be personal chemistry at work, which is unfortunate, since I much enjoy Brown#4 and would like a smoother version of it.

2 people found this review helpful.

Devonshire Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Devonshire (47)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming Extremely Mild Overwhelming Overwhelming

I had the bad sense to purchase this, but the good sense to put it in my least favourite briar. That was good, because I had to clean the briar thoroughly to get the taste mostly out. This tobacco looks more like it was made for chewing. I was so overwhelmed that I couldn't appreciate any flavours at all.

2 people found this review helpful.

beercritic Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
beercritic (12)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

This showed up today after being backordered a couple months. Used a cigar cutter to slice off a small coin, then rubbed it out. The tin note is deep, dark and compelling. The taste is savory, deep sweet tobacco. Not the strongest I've had, but blissfully strong. I'll be getting more of this.

Pipe Used: 3 inch sipping cob

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: P&C

1 person found this review helpful.

ELF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ELF (40)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Full Tolerable to Strong

This Weed,for Serious(Seasoned)Pipe Smokers..Only;If You are"NEW to the Sport",You have been Warned. I prefer TrueEnglishBlends,so I very Much enjoyed..A true History Lesson(while SLOWLY-Puffing,on this)Truth of the Matter,is"All Plug Tob..BlockForm,or Rope" Are ALL- Full Flavour(By design),,,How Strong;they are Depends on HowThick,You Shave the peices Off. Smoking this,was More of a Spiritual Experience,,,and Contemplated...How Many Sailors,Soldiers. One thing Not mentioned,in Blurb(on description)..People would Also Snuff this Tobacco. When tobacco really fresh(TooMoist to cut off) A piece would Be RippedOff(with Your teeth)and Voila'chewing tob.',,,When moisture level,was right..A pocket knife,was used to cut Off,a few slivers(and fill Your pipe),,,When rope was TOO Dry...It Would be ground up in Your hands,and Added to Your Snuff Box. My Uncle(Veteran,War2),,,If they Were,Struggling to stay Awake(NightWatch),,,On Many Occasions;Wld Snuff..His Rope Tob. If You are looking For Serious HistoryLesson..in OldSchoolPipeSmoking...Here's Your Chance

Pipe Used: Peterson 317(p-lip)

Age When Smoked: New Tin

Purchased From: Briar+Bean/Clarkesville,Tn.

Similar Blends: Gaw.1792.

1 person found this review helpful.

DrT999 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrT999 (153)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Extremely Mild Very Full Very Strong

Yes, it's strong, but there are other blends and ropes just as strong that I've enjoyed. For me, this was like smoking the burnt fat left on the grill. I can see how some could like that, but the taste just didn't appeal.

1 person found this review helpful.

scottyspipesebay Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
scottyspipesebay (25)
★★★★
Strong Mild Very Full Tolerable to Strong

Don't like it in the pipe. Too burnt meat, for me. But, it makes for a great little HRC. Akin to tiny stick of dynamite that smokes for a month of Sundays. Holy Mole! 1 star in the pipe. 4 stars as an HRC.

A note to Wiseguy 1982...you must push the spoon end of the tamper under the lip of the tin lid to release the vacuum seal. All tins are easily opened, but you must do that first or you'll break you wrists trying to open the darn thing. "So now ya know...I'm Paul Harvey...page 2"......

1 person found this review helpful.

JackSparrow Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JackSparrow (14)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

Hey guys, this stuff is the real man's heaven!!!

Robust, greasy, beefy, earthy and smoky, and it's just a VA blend, no more: Samuel, how could you create this??? You're the undiscussed Lord of blenders!!! SG comes first, all the others follow….

This baccy is simply fantastic, unique, nothing similar yet. First of all we have to say that black is not brown: this rope is really different from the other SG one (BRN4). A bit lighter in N dept and less earthy and more smoky.

Opening the tin you can find a greasy black rope, dark as the night, very thick and with a deep complex aroma, rich of nuances: earth, grill smoke, burnt oil and in the background dried fruits as raisin and fig; just a hint of nut.

I slice the rope in about 1 mm slices, let them dry out for a little while and then load my bowl. It is very easy to light and burns very well, for a rich smoky and cool smoke. At first puffs I find it a bit harsh but just a little while later it gets round and going throgh the bowl the sweetness of VA comes out, so its nuances of dried fruit.

It's strong and rich in the N factor, but not as its big brother BRN4. I never find it overwhelming or sicking, rich for sure, but always pleasant. It got at once one of my favorites. Not for the morning, but perfect after a good lunch or dinner. Pure tobacco taste, not for aromatic lovers, only for straight tobacco fans.

Very good mixed in equal proportion with BRN4.

Simply fantastic, if possible I'd rate it more than 4 stars!!!!

1 person found this review helpful.

juvat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
juvat (36)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Very Strong

This is the kind of blend that will curl your toes and put hair on your balls. Love it, but its not for the feint of heart.

1 person found this review helpful.

elendarsilvermoom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
elendarsilvermoom (3)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Full Very Strong

Upon reading the reviews here and hearing so much about the brute strength of this tobacco, I decided to order a tin for a test run. I was so anxious to try this that I rubbed a bit out and packed it immediately. Couldn't keep the pipe lit for anything, so the first couple smokes were less-than-enjoyable. I cut more off the rope and let it air dry for a bit before I rubbed it out. Working with this rope is a treat, leaves my hands looking like I've been working on oily machinery (I wonder if this is part of the reasoning behind the industrial gears tin art...) After giving it time to breathe, I found it much more enjoyable and easy to keep lit...

However, I have a tendency to smoke a bit too fast so I got a bit carried away once I was able to keep a light, and consequently I was floored by the nicotine hit. The flavor is smoky, though not in a latakia sense. It is a much deeper and darker flavor. It brings to mind the flavor of a nice grilled steak. I enjoy it best after a nice helping of corned beef and cabbage. Amazing! My wife doesn't agree with the room note at all, so I make sure to burn strong incense while I'm smoking this stuff.

This is definitely not a tobacco for the meek and will readily break its foot off in your ass if you don't give it the proper respect. Give it the space it needs and it will reward you with a beautiful, rich smoke. Definitely recommended, especially to nicotine lovers!

P.S. Don't let the ugliness of the rope turn you off. It DOES look like something that my cats would leave behind in the litter box, but smells more like chipotles and motor oil.

1 person found this review helpful.

alpyesilay Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
alpyesilay (9)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Full Strong

A good satisfying one. Not very strong as exaggerated. Every pipe smoker needs to try this one.

1 person found this review helpful.

BradS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BradS (22)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

After reading comparisons of Black XX to diesel fuel, used motor oil, and worse, I was a little apprehensive to try a sample of Black XX that I received recently.

I received encouragement from some and goading from others to give it a go, so I did. Black XX was definitely a surprise! I liked it and hope if you have not tried it, you might give it a shot anyway. Some of the descriptions may be due to how different Black XX looks, rubs out and tastes different than most any other pipe weed.

I cut a 1/4" disk off the sample piece and had to shred it with my fingers. It did not seem to want to rub out very easily for me. I loaded it in a MM Diplomat cob and went out to the back porch.

It was a little difficult to light, but once going, easily stayed lit to the bottom of the bowl. I found many surprises from Black XX. The flavor is smooth and nice. It tasted like a combination of dark ale w/o the sweetness, the crispy end of a smoked brisket and a maduro wrapped cigar rolled into one.

Also surprising was the fact that it burned very cool. Cobs generally emimate quite a bit of heat from the bowl for me, but Black XX barely caused my Diplomat to get warm. There was zero tongue bite through the entire smoke. The flavor was consitant from top to bottom.

I wouldn't smoke this in the house due to the pungent room note, but it's not offensive to some as you would believe. My wife, who is picky about what tobacco smells she likes & doesn't said, "It smells like an older man's cigar". She said it wasn't intollerable, but would not approve it for the house (expected).

If you haven't tried this, don't be scared off by others. Smoke a bowl and form your own opinion. That said, I would not recommend this for a newbie pipe smoker that does not have a developed palate for toby yet.

1 person found this review helpful.

BriarPatch Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarPatch (33)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Full Strong

Black is not Brown.

Which is counterintuitive, and hence a source of some confusion here. We think of white as pure and light, and anything labeled Black XX surely must be at the extreme opposite end of the spectrum. Except when it isn't.

Black Rope XX is milder than Brown Rope No. 4. According to SG, Black XX begins as Brown No. 4 but then "undergoes an additional cooking process which removes some of the stronger tar and nicotine elements, turning the rope black, and providing a milder smoke than Brown." It results in a denser, mustier, richer, but more accessible smoke.

I like this stuff. Neither Black nor Brown has a lot of flavor in the typical sense. What they do have is strength, which is not to be belittled. Black has less of it, but it's heaviness, or richness, compensates quite adequately.

Think of it like this: You cook (or order) a fabulous Indian curry for yourself and your wife. Her's is mild, yours is hot. Technically, they both taste the same, but yet there is a world of difference between the two. It's not the flavor, but the heat making the difference, but in the end, it's all part of the "flavor" experience.

Brown adds heat when you want it, Black not quite as much heat, but depth. I have other tobaccos that can give me what Black does, but there is nothing out there like Brown. Black is a fine tobacco if rich and hearty is your thing, and I recommended it.

But, Black is not Brown.

Brown exists in it's own galaxy.

P.S. If you become addicted to these ropes (as I have) but the novelty of all the cutting and rubbing begins to wear off, you can purchase both in a "sliced" version from Gawith Hoggarth.

1 person found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (569)
★★☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

As did the last poster, I found this stuff problematic to keep lit. It was much better after it dried, of course, although I did try it fresh out of the tin just because my normal routine is to try all tobaccos completely fresh, with some drying period, and then with a more extensive drying period. No matter how long I allowed the cut coins to dry, they never wanted to hold a light for very long... that is, until I waited so long that the tobacco became tinder. No problems holding a light then. The problem then became how to keep my nose hairs from catching fire!

The taste of this was strong to the point where it seemed somewhat character-less. It made me think of drinking a dark roast black coffee. If you like that taste, this might be your 'baccy. But if you prefer something less overpowering with a few delicate notes amidst the darkness, look elsewhere. This is like smoking a double maduro Honduran cigar as opposed to, say, a full flavored but fairly mild colorado Dominican. Very full taste, and the fullness of it is wearing. The taste buds are so busy dealing with the forest that they can't study the leaves. This is not to say it's a bad smoke but I had better success with it in a small-bowled pipe rather than the oversized ones I favor. As a 20-30 minute smoke, it was very nice. I just prefer a little more "color" if you will. But if you love virginia tobacco, I highly recommend that you at least try this. Email me - I can send you a sample. Please! :)

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipepundit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipepundit (168)
★★☆☆
Strong Mild to Medium Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Not the easiest tobacco to prepare, but that may only be my lack of experience in handling such presentations. The tobacco is characterful and strong in nicotine. It has a scent similar to that of Coniston Cut Plug, but much less obtrusive. It smokes cool.

I am not very fond of this particular scent, so I used my supply to enliven otherwise weak and dull mixtures. As a spice tobacco it has been useful.

1 person found this review helpful.

jankoez Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jankoez (67)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming Medium Overwhelming Overwhelming

This is awful and never to forget experience. From the appearance to taste in your mouth it is gross and if you are VERY tolerable it tastes as you soaked cigar leftovers for days in pond water, and then tried to smoke.

Samuel Gawith has very good tobacco blends. This one is not; money just gone with the wind?

1 person found this review helpful.

pop-pop's pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pop-pop's pipe (96)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming None Detected Overwhelming Extra Strong

This tastes like barbequed ribs! I want tobacco to taste like tobacco! I like strong blends, but this is ridiculous! At this expense, I could buy a pack of DeNobli or Parodi Toscano style cigars, break them up and smoke them in my pipe, and only pay about $3.00 ! The sight of this tobacco is unappetising, it looks like a turd! I could do Irish Flake, I could do 1792 even, but this blend is absolutely putrid!

1 person found this review helpful.

Gilly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gilly (2)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Mild Very Full Strong

Here in the UK, called Dark XX Twist, came in plug form in a white plastic bag. Harsh for the first half bowl then tolerable.

1 person found this review helpful.

LeGunnCat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LeGunnCat (18)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Tolerable

"A cigar smokers pipe tobacco."

I'm not sure I understand all the fuss about this tobacco. It's sounds extremely imposing and reading the reviews would lead one to believe smoking this could possibly change the way you approach smoking a pipe.

The presentation reminds me of chewing tobacco twists I had seen in my travels through Kentucky. The smell was mildly reminiscent of your basic chaw, Redman, Levi Garrett, etc... mild smelling with a nice pure tobacco scent. I began by cutting 4 coin sized pieces off the twist. They were easy to rub out into ribbon. I expected more moisture, but this was ready to go, so I packed my corn cob (as a precaution). It lit easily and stayed lit. Right away the flavor reminded me of a medium to strong cigar. Very nice. I was waiting for the nicotine punch experienced by many, but found it no more powerful then your average cigar.

I believe this is an excellent smoke, full bodied with no flavoring. The more I smoked this blend the more I liked it. Caution should be taken to smoke this slowly and not get it too hot. If you are a cigar smoker, you will be very pleased with this blend as it taste very much like a medium bodied cigar.

1 person found this review helpful.

Ratcat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ratcat (30)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Overwhelming Strong

Finally I got one of this. I think every pipe smoker should have one of this. I open the tin and it wasn't very.....hum...nice. It smelled like rubber. Then after I left it alone for a few days and re-open it again, the smell got a bit better. It kind of smell like very dark cigars except a lot more murky. I know this is going to be strong so I slice it up in real thin and let it dry a bit. This stuff is very oily. Pack it and let the flame do the work. It smoke suprisingly dry. It taste like real tobacco but it kind of falls away from the pipe tobaco genre. A litte bit like the chewing kind but totally without any sweetness. It is a slow moving powerful dark monster in terms of flavoring but I detect zero nicotine content. From the top of the bowl to the bottom, the taste remains firmly dark and rich and again I must mention, no sweetness. But it is very strange.....very very strange...yet it remind me of something I had tasted. I think and think and think and then it hit me. Perique!!! Damn this is Perique's cousin. So the next day, I mix this stuff up with some very light orange virginias, half and half. Load it up and bang!!!! I got a mixture 90% tasting like my fav, Peterson's old version of Irish Oak (Murry's version)!!! And then it all made sense. Perique is more peppery this is more murky. I am so glad I got this. So treat it like a spice and it would serve you well. But if you like to take this straight up, then maybe you are missing the point.

1 person found this review helpful.

wyrmis Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wyrmis (7)
★★☆☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

I actually enjoy this blend, but I do not recommend it overall. It has a great "mesquite" flavor, is very strong, and very pure. It has a kick that will last you but does not punch in the stomach so much as mellow you out. I have smoked a few bowls of it and like it.

On the downside, though, it requires more care and dedication than its worth to light it. Slicing, drying it, and then finely chopping it works nicely, but takes a good couple of days. You can also go for the relight every three minute method.

It also flavored my pipe very strongly, though some have said that it does not happen. And its kick is a little more than I want. It seems to be more a once in awhile tobacco. Its always worth having some around to share with friends if they are looking for something new, though.

1 person found this review helpful.

OPCguy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
OPCguy (46)
★☆☆☆
Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable

Black XX Rope - I really wanted to like this, I even had it shipped to me 2 day express. My first impressions of this was, "Wow. Look at the blackend dog crap, coiled up in the can. Despite that first impression it did look yummy to me.

I like nightcap and was looking for that big nicotine punch but it never came. I got more of a punch off of Penzance than this for some reason. Maybe I got a bunk can? Maybe I rubbed it out too much? I'm a little confused after reading the reviews. I don't care much for the taste of this stuff though its not aweful, but not an everyday smoke for me. If I could somehow get that nicotine kick that this stuff has I would really like this as my Nico-Fix go to tobacco. Somewhat dissapointed because I bought this just for that.

That aside, this weed is great if you like getting in there and touching and playing with your smoke. I cut mine, with a steak knife, into little disks and then rubbed them out. This is very enjoyable if thats your sort of thing. I loved it!

I will try again and hopefully be able to raise the review.

UPDATE: Well I've tried this dog doo doo in a tin a number of times now. I even have blended it with a little Nightcap, Frog Morton, and Durbar...no luck...this stuff is aweful and doesn't do the job with the nicotine like I have hoping for...although its worth 6bucks just to look at this stuff!

1 person found this review helpful.

Relapse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Relapse (14)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming None Detected Medium to Full Very Strong

I guess this makes me a wimp. I had used this tobacco to punch some extremely mild blends without any pleasant results; then some firnd suggested I smoke it straight. What a blast! This concoction should come with a severe warning on the label and a waiver to sign before trying it. I'm still suffering cold sweats and shaking all over. Maybe I'll call an ambulance to take me to the hospital!

When (if) I recover from the half bowl I managed to puff, I'll send it to my worst enemy as a present.

For starters, the chore of cutting and preparing it should be a harbringer of what the foul weed packs. As you light it, it smells even fouler than it smells out of the bag. Thanks heaven it's sold here in 20g bags, not 50g tins.

Taste? Who can detect any taste among the stench it forces ito your tongue and nostrils? It's pure nicotine, probably intended for some masochist seeking a painful suicide method.

Nuff said! It will take me months to recover my taste buds and years to forget the horrible experience. 20 minutes after putting out the pipe I'm still shaking... Highly recommended to those looking for a way to kick the habit.

1 person found this review helpful.

BendoG Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BendoG (1)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming Very Strong Overwhelming Very Strong

I was in my local bacco shop and saw what I thought was a piece of dog crap in a bag. In my curiosity I asked the question, "what in the hell is that in the bag". I should have known something was weird with it when I got the response, "ha, ha, ha,". Well to make an hour long conversation very short, I loaded it into my nording freehand and well holy hell, it made my taste buds feel like they were burnt and the smell ohh my god the smell was very, very unpleasant. I would never smoke this again and to get the taste out of my pipe I had to scrape the cake completely out and soak it in captain morgan for a day and a half. So I hope this keeps someone from making the mistake that I did.

Later and good luck.

1 person found this review helpful.

chaplikc Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
chaplikc (135)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Very Strong

I was driving in my truck the very first time I tried this, what a mistake! I am not kidding when I say that I almost had to pull over because of the nicotine punch this stuff packs. The nicotine did not sneak up on me as it does in some blends, this one just slammed me in the first few puffs and built up in strength through out the bowl. The flavor is rather odd and reminds me of the smell of a fireplace after it has burnt out and rain has come down the chimney on the ashes. I recommend this only to those whom are die hard nicoholics. I enjoy strong blends but this is to much for me.

1 person found this review helpful.

bigblends Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bigblends (46)
★☆☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Very Mild Tolerable to Strong

I had great expectations for this. Tin presentation was an oily, jet-black rope. Much tighter in its wrap than the Brown No. 4 Rope. The smell is similar to that of Brown No. 4, just sharper.

I used a cigar cutter to produce some slices, which I then rubbed out fully. The Black XX lights and burns well, but the predominate taste was pre-smoked Brown No. 4.

I gave this tobacco the "Might try it again, but will not keep it on hand" rating because I still have some left in my tin. I will come back to Black XX and use different approaches: smoking various quantities, leaving the slices intact, etc. Then I'll add to my review.

As it stands now, this is just not that great. ----------------------------------------------

UPDATE: 8/12/04

Ok, I gave this another try. I kept the slices on the thin side, left them whole, packed with no pressure, and topped off the much smaller bowl with fully rubbed out tobacco to develop some good embers. I just can't get past the dominant pre-smoked flavor. I downgraded this blend to the "Not my cup of tea" rating. Yuck.

1 person found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (611)
★★☆☆
Extremely Strong Very Mild Extra Full Extra Strong

A pain to prepare and a pain to smoke if you leave any moisture in it. I didn't like it bone dry at all. I lost too much flavor, and it burned a little harsh and cigar/cigarette-like if I rushed it, especially after the half way point. Leaving some moisture in the tobacco is recommended, even though you'll have to relight a fair number of times. You get the taste of a strong, meaty, earthy Virginia, some dried fruit, a bit of spice, and a little Lakeland, with a touch of cigar. It maybe still give a cigarette note if you puff fast, and as strong as this is, you really need to sip this slowly in a small bowl. Eat well first. If you don't, the taste and nicotine will make you wish you had. Tobaccos are smoked to enjoy, not to put you into a deep horizontal with a strong head rush. But this can be tamed if you go about it as I suggest.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Overwhelming Very Strong

Samuel Gawith is one of my favorite manufacturers. Their Virginia flakes in particular are outstanding. So I'm frankly very surprised at how utterly repugnant I find Black XX.

I don't like to slam a tobacco. I give every tobacco a fair shake before I post a review. I even finished my packet of Five Brothers before panning it with a 1 star rating. I can usually find something of merit in a tobacco even if I don't actually like it. But this. What in God's name is this wretched stuff?

I can't stomach more than a few puffs of this tobacco. It is absolutely vile. I've never finished a bowl. I suppose it's possible that Black XX smooths out at around the half bowl and becomes a sublime tobacco smoking experience. I'll never know, because I've never been able to get there.

It smells OK in the tin. No hint of the ghastly horridness that's about to be visited upon your tongue and nostrils. The flavor and aroma of this tobacco remind me of burning rubber tires. Or melting plastic. Add in some rancid Liquid Smoke and the nastiest barbecue sauce you've ever tasted and that's Black XX in a nutshell.

No idea what I'm going to do with the rest of this tin of Black XX. Probably put it away for months, or years, until I've forgotten how revolting it is and then give it another go. Or perhaps I'll try mixing it 50/50 with Brown No. 4 as another reviewer has suggested, though I'm not sure I have the heart for it. I'm still evaluating Brown No. 4 and haven't completely made up my mind about it yet. But at least it's interesting and capable of being enjoyed. Not so with Black XX.

There's always going to be some freak who thinks any given tobacco is God's gift to pipe smokers. I don't know how else to explain all the 3 and 4 star ratings. Please just trust me, 99% of you will detest this evil tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Uban Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Uban (34)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming None Detected Overwhelming Overwhelming

EDIT: I had put this under Brown Rope by accident. No wonder - it made me me so goofy every time I smoked it that I got lost.

I have great respect for Gawith as a result of Skiff, SL, Best Brn, FVa Flake, etc. I do not appreciate tonquin, howerver. I generally love a good Va, but this? It really does smell just like an empty BBQ heating up. It indeed does taste meaty. If I want to taste meat, I will eat rather than smoke a pipe! Smoked straight, I would rate it minus four stars. I found it awful. I mixed it with some PA, as suggested below, & it ruined the PA. It remained harsh even mixed with straight McC Oriental.

HOWEVER: I am no blender, but on about the sixth try, I came up with Solani 633, McC Oriental, & BR #4 in equal proportions. To my surprise, It made a REALLY good smoke - a solid 3 star performer. I will finish the tin that way and will not buy more, as I have a tin of the Black to wade through. Next surprise: it was pretty good mixed 1/3 in Sail regular. I may do more of this & report back. RIR

Pipe Used: meer, cob, briar, clay

Age When Smoked: 1 year

Purchased From: Gift

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mike0831 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mike0831 (10)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I always alway smoke slow. Ages ago when I smoked cigarettes I did enough fast-paced nicotine consumption. I'm too old for that now. With that said whether it's a tasty aromatic (Sutcliffe Maple Street) or this monster of a weed, I take it slow. The slower you smoke this tobak the better it'll go for you. I think there's some complexity in the smoke bit it take a whole lotta patience. The preparation does take time but I have to admit I like that (I also really enjoy Peterson's Perfect Plug). This is a really good tobak but it definitely needs to be smoked in a pipe with a small bowl. Dry it out first otherwise or you will be tearing your hair out, being naucous and cursing Mike0831.

Pipe Used: Stanwell 43

Age When Smoked: 55

Purchased From: Tobacco shop

Similar Blends: Peterson - Peterson's Perfect Plug.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

WillardFan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WillardFan (68)
★★☆☆
Strong Strong Full Strong

Tried something new with this stuff. Try mixing this with some Best Brown Flake. Not too bad. Still knocks the poop out of you though...

Well this one is unbelievable. Wow! Strong is an understatement. Not for the faint of heart. Kicks like a mule. At first the taste is something akin to burning cardboard, but then you get a subtle sweetness. No bite, but after about a minute, it brought back some memories of a Santana concert I went to in the seventies, where I smoked something that made my head swim. I wouldn't recommend this on a daily basis, but if you want a major change of pace, that kicks you in the butt, this oughta do it. If only it didn't look so much like a big dookie...

I've been mixing this with a bit of Prince Albert. Makes it a whole lot easier to light and to keep it lit as well...

Pipe Used: An Italian Milano bent model.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★☆☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Very Full Tolerable

This was definitely a strong smoke but not overwhelming like some of the flakes (1792 and Brac) This was just straight forward, in your face, no nuances, strong smoke. I'm glad I tried it, but wont be revisiting it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

the_german Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_german (204)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

After having failed to obtain any of Gawith, Hoggarth & Co's ropes, which I have been partial to since my last holiday in England, via mail oder, I was quite surprised that there finally is an importer of this particular rope to Germany. The time from noticing this fact to obtaining a tin was measured in minutes (about 70 of them, which is the time it takes me to drive to Dan Pipe's store from where I live).

Opening the tin, this is very much what I remembered from back when: the BBQ-ish tin note with lots of smokiness in it. Also the tales of being overwhelmed by this 'baccy by the people running the store.

I cut off very thin slices, rub out and let dry for about an hour, or longer. I then stuff gently into my smallest pipes, light up a few times, and enjoy the wonderfully beefy, deep, dark taste of this. I need a few relights, but that is OK; I want to take a few breaks during the smoke, too: this _is_ strong stuff.

Normally my last pipe of the day, I thoroughly enjoy this blend with an Islay Single Malt; the peatiness just seems to go along splendidly. Leave the rubbed-out 'baccy lots of room, and go slow is my advice. Thoroughly delicious, real 'baccy, and now that I can get it locally, in my rotation with the due respect for its strength.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PIE-EYED-PIPER Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PIE-EYED-PIPER (20)
★★☆☆
Strong Very Mild Full Tolerable to Strong

I was gifted a tin of this for my birthday a few months back. I was extremely excited to smoke it that I invited a friend and fellow pipe smoker over for dinner one night. Cracking the tin open, I could see that the tobacco (rope) was as black as tar. After clipping off a few discs from the rope with my cigar cutter, my friend, a veteran pipe smoker of 25 years, forewarned me not to fill up my bowl as I may have a system shock from this tobacco. He explained to me that this tobacco is not quite the same as the rest of the SG blends I've smoked. When asked how different it was, he simply replied: “you have to try it yourself”. Being a neophyte at pipe smoking, I heeded his words of wisdom.

Fortunately, I did heed his advice. After a few puffs, I could feel myself turn blue and nauseous. This tobacco is STRONG. Not only was it strong, it tasted like I was smoking burnt steak – like smoking charcoal. Much as I tried finishing the bowl, I could only finish a third of it. I discarded what was left in my pipe and traded my nearly full tin of SG Black XX Twist (Rope) for my friends half consumed tin of SG Best Brown Flake.

Is this a bad tobacco? I don't think so. Maybe one can argue that I'm not used to smoking strong tobaccos. I would strongly disagree with that as part of my regular rotation include Gawith, Hoggarth & Co.'s Dark Flake U/S, Brown Flake U/S and Dark Bird's Eye. Maybe I was a little bit off that night that may have caused such a distasteful experience.

The fact that Samuel Gawith has this on the market means that there are people who do like this blend. If ever there is a pipe tobacco that would make me raise the white flag, THIS IS IT! This tobacco is definitely not for the faint of heart. This is for the more EXPERIENCED SMOKER. I've been smoking for 5 years and still consider myself a newbie at this. Even my “veteran” friends treats this tobacco with great respect. I strongly suggest that you do the same.

Will I ever give it another chance? Maybe in the future… the distant future. For now, I would SOMEWHAT RECOMMEND this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cactido Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cactido (1)
★★★☆
Very Strong Very Mild Full Strong

I was drawn to this by my love of full taste, high strength tobaccos, as well as its history. It's commonly talked about as a sailor's and miner's tobacco, but this was also the favorite of the mountain men during the American fur trade era. Because it was so densely packed, it could be transported in large quantities to the rendezvous, something the fur companies looked for to maximize their profits. Rope tobacco was very likely the only kind of pipe tobacco available at the rendezvous to the mountain men once they headed west, and pipe smoking was among the mountain man's favorite activities.

This is definitely a strong tobacco. I had a good night's sleep and a full meal before enjoying it, and I'm glad I did. There's plenty of nicotine in here. To me, it tasted of salted meat with a good dose of pepper, with slight notes of a sweet, buttery nut flavor. The flavors stay consistent to the bottom of the bowl.

I've smoked it the way it would likely have been smoked by most mountain men, cut into coins and jammed straight into the bowl, with a single coin rubbed out and put on top to aid lighting, as well as completely rubbed out. The whole coins last a whole lot longer (in a pipe that generally lasts 30 to 35 minutes, I get over an hour), but are a genuine pain to keep lit. The rubbed out bowls last quite a while, and burn smoothly straight through.

The significant other can't stand the smell of the heavy smoke as it whirls from the bowl, and I can't say I blame her. It's just about as strong as the tobacco itself.

I don't count this among my favorites, but I'll definitely be keeping some on hand for when the mood strikes me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Osiris Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Osiris (1)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

After reading all of the previous reviews, I approached this tobacco with some trepidation. I was pleasantly surprised by this tobacco. It is a strong, full-flavored offering from Gawith. The core flavor is something I would describe as 'spice box.' It's a flavor reminiscent of heavy aged red wines. It also has a definite beef steak tone. I sensed a layer of blackberries in the background. The smoke was strong and full but never bitter. The flavor remained consistent all the way to the bottom of my pipe. It was quite delicious.

It actually reminded me of my favorite cigar: the Partagas Black.

I cut 1/4 inch thick medallions and rubbed them out. I smoked it in a small-bowled Capri pipe. It did take a few tries to get it lit. It also required numerous relights. However, it may just be that I didn't allow the tobacco to dry out enough before smoking.

It's not an all-day smoke. It's to be sipped and savored after a heavy meal. It's a sweet, meaty, muscular tobacco; a real man's tobacco. It definitely has a high nicotine content that may catch you off guard if you are unprepared.

Overall, this has instantly become one of my favorites.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mike__P Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mike__P (87)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Very Mild Full Strong

Whew. This serves one purpose: nicotine delivery system. Smoky is an understatement. This one smells like a cross between cured, grilled meat and diesel oil, and is dark and disturbing. Nonetheless, I find myself reaching for it occasionally and shaving off a smoke when nothing but a good buzz will do, especially after a rough day at the office and with a stiff drink. Refined? Nope. Tasty? Not so much, because it tastes like it smells -- and it stinks when it burns. It's going to take me a while to finish off this black turd, and I probably won't pick up another one. Probably.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hamiltoncallum Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hamiltoncallum (3)
★★★★
Very Strong Medium to Strong Medium to Full Strong

My dream tobacco. Do you remember 50's and 60's rom-com films that use that swirly, dream-like effect when progressing to another scene? Everyone has their own version of these in real life, and my own swirly... dream-haze 'thing' is in a cloud of this stuff. Except Audrey Hepburn isn't be there.

Of course everyone has varying tastes, and like many, mine from the word go, was for the full flavored hearty stuff. And if you have the same tendencies for strong traditional tastes, this is definitely for you.

You may have noticed the frequent mentions of difficulty or even awkwardness in preparing and smoking the stuff. Don't fret. That's what this site is for! Learn from what others have done, or 'standing on the shoulders of giants'. I have, evidently, stood on many here, because all that's necessary to enjoy this stuff is to simply cut slices to your own preference, (and you'll learn that quickly,) and let it dry out for a while. Take your time with it, and you'll get your hazy-dream-like camera effect thing to help you progress to the next scene with Audrey Hepburn.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blue Bayou Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blue Bayou (59)
★★★★
Extremely Strong None Detected Extra Full Extra Strong

Stygian fumes from the bowels of Sauron's dungeons... Please remain seated while smoking it and do not drive or operate machinery, or death/serious injury could result from nicotine-induced vertigo...(well, almost!) If Satan himself smokes, this is what he's using...in other words, I love it!

I recommend using this by mixing it with a milder blend, perhaps an aromatic. Notes of creosote, charred oak, fusel oil, and gunpowder. Very strong when smoked alone. But adds stoutness & body to milder smokes. Not for the faint of heart. But awesome in its own way!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Azazelo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Azazelo (4)
★★★☆
Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Strong

For me, this was quite a special blend to explore. The first time I smoked it I was overwhelmed and... a little bit dissapointed. Brute strength. Then I rediscovered it a few months later and it was a much more pleasant encounter. Maybe You have to be in some sort of mood. And appetite, of course. And You should have some respect for it. Actually I would describe it as a very strong as to nicotine content but quite tasteful and even rich in delights it can offer to You. I smoke it regularly and each time I make several deliberate interruptions during the session. Honestly, this is a great blend. Not for everyone however. Only for that reason I give it just three stars...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kiowapipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kiowapipe (17)
★★★☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Very Full Very Strong

It's quite possible that the inventor of this tobacco was moved by the hand of Satan himself. It's potently vile, yet somehow irresistible. It looks and smells like the poo of a fiendish tobacco elemental. In the bowl, though, the flavor is much more mild than I expected. Still by no means mild, just more mild than expected. The flavors are tough to explain- burned flesh, synthetic gear lube, diesel exhaust- but all somehow in sort of a good way. The nicotine is just shy of overwhelming. If I smoke a small bowl after a big meal I can escape with just a strong buzz rather than the N-sweats and a spinning room. There is something strangely satisfying about this tobacco, though. I can't put my finger on it, I just feel kind of ...settled... after a bowl. I know somehow that I like it but I haven't completely come to grips with that yet. The rating on this one is a tough call, as I certainly wouldn't recommend it to every piper. I guess if you find this description intriguing I'd recommend you try it. If you find the description off-putting, stay the hell away.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

who broke my clay pipe? Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
who broke my clay pipe? (45)
★★★☆
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

Purchased 2 x 50g tins in good faith;i have never tried it before but i am an optimist;i like the industrial gears tin art which reminds me of my engineering job...(i have bought albums before because i liked the picture,,,sometimes the music is good,,,is this baccy?)

Open tin appearance:looks like a greasy turd,dark and oily,or a small diameter skinny black pudding sausage(dried pigs blood in intestines skin)

Tin aroma:licoricy diesal engine sump oil,,no beefy meaty aroma,,(well i bought this hoping it would taste like a pepper steak apparently)...Also this doesn't have any creosote aroma because this has no oriental in it,,;this is pure engine oil..

Handling:this is quite moist and hard to tear(felt like my dick in my hand except smaller and less heavy :¬) I cut a few 1/4" thick discs with a stanley knife and rub them out to produce a small pliant bundle that feels what i imagine cut up bat wings would feel like,,,..It doesn't crumble like "revor plug" which has a simular feel of moisture.. (very rubbery like an oily jiggler dangler skeleton or cabbage)

Loading pipe:Using a clay 6" georgian(my favourite allrounder pipe),loaded about 3/4 high for a trial, i try lighting with my pipe zippo...:It doesn't want to burn on its own,,so basically this is definately a prepare and let dry first type of tobacco... its not instantly smokable,,,um,,,i believe that is partly due to this being marketed as a chew as well as a smoke.(might try chewing but fear over exposure is harmful)

Reloading pipe:Tipping it out again and leaving it for 1/2 an hour its ready and dryer,,;but still didn't ignite as well as i hoped,i gave it a bit more tempering and used a hotter gas lighter this time..

Flavour:Of a dark monotone(but likeable-ish)tarry full flavour with obvious nicoteen,,;i hyperventilate purposely to see what its got,;slightly sweet,burning oil couldron flavour with slight burnt beef, but more carbonic,,,;this is ok with me because it tastes industrial in a tasty way as opposed to a burnt bitter lard fat/greasy manky oven flavour, which "dunhill nightcap"had, which i tried and failed to like once...I can't say i was blown away by the flavour or taste,;but i had recently been using the clay pipe i had to smoke some "irish flake"(which i quite liked) and so perhaps there was some cross over ghost hiding the subtle "black xx" flavour?(i hope) To be honest i was expecting a mega beef stock punch to come with this and it failed to deliver in tin aroma or the first bowl...:¬/ (i was already spoiled by tasting "G,H kendal twist large DARK XX plug 25g " first(Note:there is no category of this tobacco mentioned here on this site yet;i contacted gawith and hoggarth for product information but i haven't got a reply yet,i really want to recommend that tobacco because it is the most strong tasting meaty beefy nicoteeny baccy i have ever smoked! but i currently lack information on it to introduce it to this database)

Room note:OIL,like machine tool gear cutting oil that smokes a bit on the hot freshly cut metal swarf shavings,,(i smoke this in a factory i'm working in as i review this)

Post pipe aftertaste:OILY;not neceassarily moreish,but there is a slight liquid "baxters beef consomme with sherry"stock flavour going on with black pepper and olive oil perhaps,,,but its no oxo cube gravy or a packet of twiglets addiction...Will try it again later.

More:There is no soap whatsoever and no tongue bite either,,Full bodied for sure;and this has stout ala guiness or dark treakle and a density factor,but in someway its not massively flavoured in taste(strong but one dimensional);its strong but not really a flavour as much as a sensation of diesal in the mouth after syphoning some..... ! ...... Its tobacco but it doesn't taste like cigarettes,cigars,or pipe tobacco,,,;this is my first rope so i have no comparison by which to judge,,,i bought some "brown #4" to try as well(perhaps it tastes like smoking chewing tobacco?) To be honest i am smoking this wishing it was "gawith&hoggarths kendal twist large cut dark xx plug" which i thought this was a rope version of ;-it is not and so i got it wrong (differnet make as well)and i will try to judge this "black xx" on its own merit..

I can't be bothered to try chewing it because i can't be arsed to be spitting everywhere like a dirty bastard...(probably ok if working outside or in a coal mine)

One virtue it definately has in its industrial room note is that because i smoke it in a factory on night shift where i am not actually supposed to smoke by law,,,;it doesn't leave a lingering aromatic odour in the balcony office area where day staff will say"who's been smoking a pipe in here?" Its room note is as perfectly camofluaged in my working enviroment as tobacco can get in an engineering machine shop...It doesn't cloy my overal overcoat either like an oriental-esque "balkan mixture"

Its strength is perfect for somebody who works and wants a good nic fix to get working with,who doesn't want a long satisfying aromatic flavoursome smoke..

A few bowls later:-sliced thinner and put into a bud grinder to tear into smaller raggy pellets for better bowl airflow brought about a better burn and taste(same as before but stronger) What was noticed with this as well as the "peterson irish flake" which i had tried about 4 flakes worth the same night was that; they both produced a slightly peppery parafin-esque/white spirits/turps/ vodka nicoteen spirit vapour aftertaste which i was not sure i liked but could tolerate in "irish flake" better because it had more flavour to disguise it(the liquid nicoteen),,,this maybe because i had really smoked these wet and not given a chance to try out dried,,,:to give a fair review i will dry this out incase i am missing something better.

For now this review is pending further reviewing(note:i have just tried my first sample of "brown #4" which seems much more mild and friendly than this , while i have about 25g of "black xx" shredded and drying out as much as i can so that it hopefully smokes better)

FINAL OPPINION : Letting some preshredded totally dry out and then stored in a jar with a few intact peices has greatly improved the smoke,,,,;gone is the spirit aftertaste and it seems more mild. It burns a lot easier now as well;i think it came in the most vacuum packed tin i have ever seen;it was practiacally imploding which means the baccy inside was being stretched;this is charecteristic of all tinned baccy in that it will light at first, then get harder as it returns to normal pressure by shrinking;you then have to wait for the moisture in it to go before it will light easy.. Its a stout flavour (oil and black pepper;quite peppery like on a pepper steak)and would accomodate a stout drink with it,,,;its aftertaste is a bit burn't and bitter(imagine roofing pitch if that helps)but its ok while you are smoking it,,,,;i found cola the best chaser to go with it to be honest.

I have also blended it 50/50 with "brown #4" which gives more depth of flavour and together they fill in eachothers holes in tastes,,,like a good mesh of gears..

I have found myself craving it for its strength factor in small doses,,:i think its a great workmans strong smoke who needs a kick and is thinking about something else completely other than tobacco tasting..

Would i buy this(or simular) again? That will depend on if i cannot get hold of "gawith and hoggarths large cut dark twist xx plug" which has a pure roast beef flavour as well as the stout factor(steak and ale).. This is ok though, but i feel that i am smoking it wishing it was something else,,,;some people prefer coke and others pepsi if you get my drift,,but then again sometimes my mood is such that i fancy the blackest of blackness of which this is the quintessential stout example..

UPDATE 12/04/11 I think this is a sound purchase and i have grown to like it for its cut down pure no compromise potency,being stored in a glass jar and allowed to air has emancipated it hidden qualities,this is as strong as pipe tobacco gets as far as a combination of total stout and strength can get,,,i still like other tobacco's of course,but this has a stand alone quality and unique individual personalty to be an honoury member of my tobacco in crowd..

Update 21/05/11:Having had some jarred for a couple of month i can say that it gets milder and more approachable.. The tobacco has lost its rubberyness and cured into a more leathery licorice consistany.. While this like the Brown #4 rope which i also have,have got milder and easier to smoke;the strongest tobacco i know is Irish Flake which has got even more stronger out of the tin..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrDyson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrDyson (113)
★★★☆
Very Strong Mild to Medium Very Full Strong

This is combustible Marmite, and you'll either love it or hate it: it really is as simple as that. Smoking stuff that tastes like this and packs this kind of N wallop (see previous reviews) is certainly not for the meek. Personally, being a little on the meek side, I think it's awful. Smoking enough of it to write a fair review was an ordeal that I wouldn't want to submit myself to again; but I recommend it because I know that it's exactly the kind of baccy that some people like, and you don't know until you try. For what it is, it's right on the button - if you like that kind of thing.

It takes a lot of preparing, and isn't easy to keep alight. Smoke it in a small bowl; take it slowly, or it really will floor you; beware of the ghost: this will stay in your pipe for a long time.

Great luck, and don't say you weren't warned. This is strong stuff that'll kill you quick if you don't approach it with caution.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Newbie2010 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Newbie2010 (12)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Very Mild Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Nothing like a little Vitamin N to take you down a couple of notches. Wow. Proceed with caution. This is definitely a strong tobacco, and I love the smoky tin aroma. I've smoked it in my Peterson 314 and my small Peretti bent billiard. Wouldn't go any larger of a pipe than that. Burning rubbing, petrol and blazing plastic? Yup...I caught all that with the first few bowls. No wonder it was more available than the SG blends. So, the turd sat in its tin for a while, and a few weeks back,I went to attempt to acquire a taste for it again, but it was a dried out mess. I rehydrated it, so that the, um, wrapper had a nice sheen. Yesterday, I cut a few coins and rubbed it out and let it sit for a few minutes. I packed it my 314 and sipped it slowly. At first, I caught those rubbery, plastic, petrol flavors, but backed off and just sipped it and let the bowl settle. Soon, I was getting deep smoky tobacco flavors with burnt and slightly bitter malt and sugar flavors. I liked the long finish. The nicotine crept right up, too. I had rubbed a bunch out, so I put it away, and today, I mixed it with a little natural cavendish from Leavitt & Pierce, and that mellowed it out very nicely. It had a better room note, too. It sweetened it up, like a creamy and highly caloric Carmel Mochiatto from Starbucks. I don't know if I committed a sin by mixing in that cavendish, but I enjoyed it. Black XX just might be a good blender, that espresso shot in your coffee or the shot in a boilermaker. Happy New Year and Happy Piping!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mate Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mate (3)
★☆☆☆
Very Strong Strong Full Unnoticeable

This is the worst Tobacco Money can buy.

I am a big S&G fan, I thought the could not make bad baccy, I was wrong

It taste like smoking rubber

I can't think of any one I hate enough to give the rest of this tin to. OK maybe I'm exaggerating it would be a great gift for Politicians, especially the Anti-Smoking Nazis

Nobody has rated this review yet.

yinyang Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
yinyang (45)
★★★★
Strong Very Mild Very Full Tolerable to Strong

How does something that looks like a canine crunchie and tastes of petrol rate four stars with me? It's counter intuitive. Yet, I love this stuff. Strong, yes. Monochromatic, maybe. But not sweet? Well, maybe not like a typical candy coated VA, but I tell you, it's there.

The nicotine isn't an issue either, so long as you respect it...in my case, a small bowl insures no palpitations. A 1/4 to 1/3 inch coin, rubbed out is plenty. I like mine fresh from the rope too...my one attempt at drying it out made for a barfy smoke.

This tobacco doesn't have the typical 'high notes' as you would get from a lemon VA, obviously. So don't try it with that expectation. This is subwoofer tobacco through and through.

Definitely a manly weed.

Four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Chris08 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Chris08 (37)
★★★☆
Very Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

I will reccomend this tobacco, with the caveat that it will only suit those who have a desire for strong tobaccos without the sweet or subtle nature of milder Virginia's.

Black XX does require some preparation to make smokable, but no more than plug tobacco does. I cut it into coins with a sharp knife and then cut the coins before rubbing out. I still found that it smoked best outside with a mild breeze to keep the tobacco burning.

This stuff is a nicotine lovers dream. I found it a little overwhelming at first and it produced hiccups as I worked my way through the bowl. Tame puffing is required. When sipped outside, with a drink to periodically cleanse the palate, it's was great. If you're a heavy puffer, however, beware!

As mentioned, this tobacco isn't particularly deep. There is no complex transition of flavours as you make your way down the bowl. It isn't particularly sweet or refined. Just good old fashioned pure tobacco taste that can make you sweat.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ken_mays Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ken_mays (8)
★☆☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Medium to Full Very Strong

After a few abortive attempts with its stronger cousin, the Brown Rope, I tried the Black XX, hoping it would be more flavorful and mild.

Taste and aroma is primarily reminiscent of burning plastic. I've never gotten through more than about half a bowl. Ash is a dark, malevolent grey, and the room note is acrid.

I have to say the Brown Rope is far more pleasant even if it's stronger.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (121)
★★☆☆
Strong None Detected Mild Strong

A tobacco for seasoned pipe smokers, for the strength that is. Better balance between strength and flavor than Brown No.4. Smokes better when the tobacco is dry, on warmer days for a quick nicotine buzz. A few thinly cut disks in a small pipe, smoked slowly, will do wonders. Tastes like burnt onion skins with dark Virginia undertones.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Loboatomy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Loboatomy (36)
★★★★
Extremely Strong Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

Fantastic and real, campfire scents without Latakia, an intoxicating amount of nicotine. If there is any flavoring in this, it's very subdued, just multiple iterations of darkly pressed and stoved tobacco and it's expected cogeners. Almost a roasted spice scent once it gets going. I find that shaving the disks thin enought that they become like a shag cut when rubbed out gets the most goodness out if this stuff. Preparation is more than half the fun...I find that a utility knife with a fresh blade makes this a snap.

A wonderful dusky turd to be sliced and diced and enjoyed in a SMALL bowl...did I mention a SMALL bowl...

This is drug 'baccy, wonderful and addictive. Fantastic after a big, spicy meal...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Alguhan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alguhan (140)
★★★☆
Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable

It is not hard to prepare but takes time. I am cutting 2 or 3 medallions from the rope, air a bit, and rub. I am choosing a smal bowl for this tobacco because it satisfies my nicotine needs in a couple of minutes. Hard to light but once I catch the regular burning it stays lit.

Offers a cool and sweet smoke with a nice taste of tobacco. Yes, it is too strong, not suitable for every day smoke. I think I'll had a bowl of this on rare ocassions. Not the easiest smoke I've ever had, but it is a true pipe tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dubinthedam Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dubinthedam (133)
★★☆☆
Strong Strong Full Very Strong

1 star because it's SG, 1 star because it's strong. That's it. I love 1792 and Brown No.4...but this one goes too way out there for me. I get burnt Peking duck, burnt pop-corn, burnt toffee, soya sauce with a hint of mint....and yep, it tastes rough...You just have to try this once, just to know that 1792 is an easy blend to smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

snuffdog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
snuffdog (4)
★★★☆
Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Sweet and fairly stout, like the over browned edges of burnt caramel. Not the head butt of it's Brown brother No. 4 but more a complex sweet Virginia flavor.

I like it as a satisfying standalone and also as a mixer to boost more complex but less satisfying blends. This is a highly addictive treat that I could smoke every day. Black XX's pitbull appearance might intimidate but it's more of a kitten with claws.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

quantumboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
quantumboy (119)
★★★☆
Very Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

The lonely, unassuming little turd just stared up at me from the tin, having rested quietly all this time during its trip from the Lake District in the old country: http://www.golakes.co.uk/maps/. The rope was nothing like a hard plug, but instead it gave somewhat to the touch. Tin aroma was very nice, reminiscent of smoke and earth and straight-up tobacco.

I cut a few coins off with a pair of scissors, then carelessly cut the coins up before giving them a short rubbing-out. It separated nicely, and felt not so much moist as silky and smooth. I knew if I packed it too tightly it would be impossible to smoke, so I gave it just enough tamping with my finger to keep it in the bowl but still provide an easy draw. In other words, a very light two-layer pack. This may be the source of frustration for many who haven't appreciated this tobacco. It's all in the technique. I chose my bent Cristiano, which ended up a good choice for this weed.

The tobacco lit readily, and provided copious smoke. Imagine a really high-quality Virginia leaf but with the kick of three Ashton VSGs. There you have it. If you sip it, you'll get classic Virginia flavors sans a lot of the sweetness, but that's not quite enough to keep the fire alive, so my cadence turned into a heat-it-up smoke fest for a few seconds for a few mouthfuls of wonderful, rich, in-your-face strength, which admittedly heated up the briar a bit, then back to a couple minutes of delicious sipping during which the flavors were as mellow and wonderful as most high-quality leafs I've tasted.

After about a third-bowl, an occasional hint of Lakeland would show up, in a good way, but was fleeting. Not exceedingly complex, but a rich and flavorful smoke the whole way down. I virtually never feel nicotine, but tonight I did, even after a big Mexican dinner - you know, the kind where you fill up on chips and salsa before the meal even arrives, then you down the whole entree. Very glad I had a full stomach.

About two-thirds down, I very gently stirred and dumped the ash so I could keep it lit. The last ten minutes added some toastiness which was very nice. Not much dottle left, a mild but not unpleasant aftertaste, and a memory of an altogether wonderful smoke on the back porch at midnight.

I won't smoke this every day. Maybe once a week if I'm lucky, or whenever I need to be reminded of what a real smoke is like. At that rate, this little eight-incher will easily last me a couple months, but I intend to stock up on this stuff. I imagine it will become heavenly with a year or three of age. Highly recommended for those who need a reminder of what real tobacco is like.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Theodor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Theodor (2)
★★★☆
Very Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Having established my lack of palate sophistication in TAD with an against the grain distaste for the Penzance eunuch, I freely admit that I am a neophyte, coming to this esteemed assemblage with 1792 my untutored standard fare, already smoking Black XX. In my inexperienced interpretation, this is unflavored Virginia, even-tempered, with no after-taste. As all twists, prep is the issue.

Comparing like to like, the bulk version is only slightly, if darker than bulk Brown Bogie. The tinned is darker yet with an oily gumminess elicited from the bulk by compression. Brown Bogie doesn't have that characteristic to the same degree. Black XX is much smoother, less tangy with faint earthy barbeque smokiness, far more pronounced in the Brown Bogie.

Pardon s'il vu plait. I must resist being the troll judging detractors expecting some fairy dust blend like Penzance as incroyable pleurnicheuses efféminé-hommes mouche du coche qui savent tout. I must. Nevertheless, by now, even as a newbie, I know I have no business smoking some things. I will look for variety while reasonably adhering to my nicotinic raison d'être, the star of the Black XX show, soaring a cappella. While Brown Bogie's nicotine content is significantly higher, Black XX has a cleaner taste, is milder, smoother, and more easy-going.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kennethwilkinson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kennethwilkinson (1)
★★★★
Very Strong Very Mild Full Tolerable to Strong

i smoked cigarettes for 10 years and stopped 3 months ago and started smoking pipe and just found my self inhaling the smoke from the pipe i was just about to quit until i ordered some of this stuff. when i opened it up the smell was nasty. but i loaded it up just for a taste. and it was what iv been waiting for from the moment i picked up a pipe a strong but not to strong of a taste. like a strong black cup of coffee. so i tried to inhale it but i couldn't the smoke was to much for my lungs.after a week of smoking this i realized i was in love with a tobacco named black xx i threw all the rest of my tobacco away. every time i smoke this stuff i start to wonder why i smoked cigarettes for so long. its very enjoyable. if your trying to stop smoking cigarettes and start smoking pipe buy this tobacco. its got the nicotine rush you want, it taste pretty good and you cant inhale it, if you can you might want to go see a doctor

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bluenoser Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bluenoser (34)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Very Pleasant

An excellent Virginia tobacco. Full of natural sweetness, creamy as whole chocolate milk on mouth and tongue. Room note lingers about freely reminding you that you have just smoked a bowl of historic leaf once enjoyed by our great-great grandfathers. Absolutely wonderful.....no cigar could ever provide such satisfaction or joy...a Macanudo robusto comes within yelling distance but no further.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Sinister Topiary Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sinister Topiary (74)
★★★☆
Very Strong Very Mild Extra Full Extra Strong

I have always liked to experiment with the extremes of aesthetic experience, so when I heard of this tobacco, and read the reviews, it was only a matter of time until I had to try it.

I don't know what to make of this one. Clearly it's a top-quality leaf that provides a unique and fascinating smoke. There's something primeval about this one, something of the excremental -- no, sorry -- elemental terra. It's easy for me to see how one can either fall in love with it or detest it; conversely I don't see how anyone can be neutral or indifferent to it.

Make no mistake -- this is an in-your-face tobacco. It's got strength all right, as everyone here attests. And it's got flavor, that's for sure, but it's one that I can't quite put my finger on; it's a flavor that is, weirdly, simultaneously alluring and repellent, much like scotch to the unacclimated. It smokes very strong, warm, and bone-dry, with an odd smoky dark sweetness hovering in the foreground, though the smokiness is very unlike the smooth full smokiness of latakia: this smokiness is raw and rough around the edges and sulfitic, like burning flowers with a hint of coal cased licorice, or maybe it's licorice cased coal.

I do have a problem keeping this lit, even though I cut off coins with a cigar slicer and rub them out into shaggy ribbons. But when it eventually burns to the bottom it leaves a fine white ash like talcum powder.

Black XX Rope is the tobacco equivalent of the blackest porter you can imagine, or the muddy sediment of turkish coffee, or grain alcohol with a touch of ouzo in it. If you like the smell of freshly laid asphalt -- which I do -- you'll probably like this.

I expect I'll be getting to know this strange, intense tobacco more intimately since it's such an intriguing flavor, one I find difficult to resist, like a vamp I'm drawn to against my better judgment. Indeed I find myself reaching for it on an almost daily basis. I wouldn't be surprised if I increase my rating of this to four stars in the future, as this smoke just gets better and better the more I get to know it.

Recommended for those who aren't afraid to peer into the abyss.

UPDATE 10/16/10: I've been smoking this now for almost two years, and I still find it hard to keep lit. But it's worth the effort. I don't smoke it regularly, but every once in a while I just need to have it. It's flavor is like none-other. I think the most accurate description I came across recently was "burnt machine oil," which apparently is a flavor I like. (Though I still say it tastes to me like burning soapy flowers with a hint of ouzo.) It's one of those unique flavors I find to straddle the line between repellent and enticing, and it's uniquely satisfying when I crave it. It's not in my rotation, but I always keep some around when I need to satisfy some masochistic itch.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kg0mz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kg0mz (54)
★★★☆
Very Strong Mild Full Tolerable to Strong

Upon opening this tin, the thought came to me, how do I know this is tobacco and not mummified road-kill? The odor is like tobacco, but how do I know a mummified snake doesn't have a tobacco odor? Really. Well, it doesn't smell bad, so I picked up a small piece (the head?) that had broken free from the main body of the rope or twist. Momentarily forgetting everything I know about rope tobacco, this half-inch chunk, I teased it apart, tried to rub it, cut it up with scissors, tried to rub it, stuffed it into a cob, and lit it.

My wife marinates a thinly sliced pork meat that she threads on long, narrow gage wooden sticks. We grill it outdoors over charcoal. Black XX has a similar aroma. Grilled meat, lemon grass, garlic, soy sauce, charcoal. I am anxious to smoke this after eating that meat.

[I wonder if people who do Civil War reenactments include this for historical accuracy? I should go to one and ask. Maybe I should join in? How did it come to be, this rope form of tobacco? What was that first twister thinking? What other permutations were tried before settling on the rope? Are my teeth black now? My wife knows some old ladies that either smoke or chew tobacco until their teeth turn black. Its what they do. Would a 18th Century rope smoker think a modern filtered cigarette odd?]

By the way, this isn't something you need to tamp. You break off or chip away the top layer of the lava rock. Half way down I encounter a fleeting laundry note. Bleach? Oxydol? A long-used essence? Ah, Lakeland.

I am assigning four stars. It tastes good to this carnivore. It satisfies. An entire evening's worth of entertainment. It is fun to smoke, if somewhat funny. I haven't laughed so hard since the pigs ate my little brother.

07/27/09 UPDATE: I am revising some of my reviews. I have given out more 4 star ratings than anything else. That practice is probably not helping. So, I am reducing Black XX to 3 stars, not because I like it less than I did before, but because I am limiting 4 stars to fewer than 25% of all my reviews. One day I may use the 4 star rating to designate my top five.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

eichenlaub Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
eichenlaub (13)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

This is one of my everyday smokes, I just love it. Sliced thin, rubbed out, and dried well this burns very easily. This taste is quite full, something of plums in there it seems but mainly just good tobacco. Samuell Gawith does a great job with their ropes and this is no exception. If you enjoy a strong tobacco then this is certainly worth a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipe-arazzo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe-arazzo (71)
★★☆☆
Strong None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Lakeland Tour Stop 15

I hate to give this a bad review, because it seems that my tin was sub-par. I do not notice any or at least not many reviews here that note problems keeping this stuff lit. But I had a hell of a time with burning this stuff. I cut it into very thin coins, rubbed out and dried extensively, and I could never keep it lit for more than 30 seconds or so. I loaned some out to another smoker who had the same problem. But again, if others don't mention this problem, it was probably my tin (or, less likely, me). So take this with a grain of salt.

Also, the flavor was not to my liking. It tasted and smelled just like burning peat moss. Interesting but not pleasant.

Two stars for interest, and that's probably generous. But again, it was just one tin and this is just one review. Try it and see for yourself.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sethus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sethus (9)
★★★★
Very Strong Mild to Medium Very Full Very Strong

truly a mans smoke ..it is a classic English rope...but be warned it makes women faint.. recommended !!! WARNING ...BLACK XX WILL PUT HAIRS ON YOUR CHEST OR TAKE THEM OFF, WHICHEVER THE CASE MAY BE , truly awesome JUST AWESOME .

UPDATE....GOD GIVES PLEASURES IN MANY WAYS...AND THIS IS ONE OF HIS GIFTS TO MAN.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Quick_nick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Quick_nick (27)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

Black XX is a very nice smoke, it was full and strong but it didn't completely knock me on my ass. The rope cut and rubbed well; filling and lighting was effortless and it hardly needed a relight. I wish more companies would make ropes because when done right like Black XX it can be extremely rewarding. There was some nice sweetness and spice through out the smoke. Spice in a cinnamon or nutmeg sort of way not the perique sort. Having tried a couple other ropes I think Black XX is a nice one for someone curious about ropes who hasn't ever had one yet.

It lacks the edge to give it 4 stars but i think it could deserve three. Black XX is a great change of pace smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr.sadik Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.sadik (100)
★★★★
Extremely Strong None Detected Full Strong

i would say highly recommended for a seasoned smoker,,it have a content of nicotine tht cn truly knock u down,,preferred in smaller bowl i smoked it once in a savenelli extra and it outlasted me to a 3 hrs,,black pressed tobacco tht cn hock u into stronger tobacco or turn u bk frm smoking at all ,,cut into small flakes pack up and prepare a chair to lay on for the rest of the day,,never smoke in th night as it will alert through out the rest of it,,i would definitly buy more

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lvpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lvpipe (13)
★★★★
Very Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is pure tobacco taste, yes it is strong but it is a wonderful smoke. Really nice with a strong cup of coffee, tea, bourbon or scotch. I enjoy this cut 50-50 with Kendall Plug also.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jopado Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jopado (12)
★★★☆
Strong Medium Very Full Strong

OK. here's the deal. Yeah it looks like something a Greyhound dog left on the esplanade in Barcelona, Spain. However, if you give it a chance, it'll give you a good smoke.

Start by finding one end of the,,,,er...rope (?) and slicing off a couple of dimes worth. I use a fish filet knife for this step. Next, pick your favorite mild tobacco and pack half a pipe and then drop in a couple of the dimes worth of Black XX and pack as per normal with your mild stuff. Lite and puff and wait for the explosion. Wait for a day or two, repeat.

Over time,ease off on the mild stuff and now your ready! Unless you chew heavy duty tobacco and snort snuff I suggest that you do not try Black XX straight out of the bag, it might be a bit much.

NOTE: 11/18/08 I just received a new half pound from Smokingpipes and it's labeled "Black XX Finest". (?) Is this an improvement? I don't have any of the old stuff around to compare it to (I haven't attempted to cellar and age this tobacco) but it appears to be just as ugly and repulsive as regular old Black XX. If I use my imagination it might be a tad milder. But maybe I'm just toughening up to it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Effluvinator Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Effluvinator (32)
★☆☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Extra Full Extra Strong

I have tried and tried but I just do not like this stuff. I have tried it in clay, briar, cob, and meer. While I enjoy strong tobaccos such as the various brown ropes, Dark Flake, 1792, etc., the taste of this just puts me off. I have no problem with the amount of nicotine in it, it just simply tastes bad to me. I have nearly finished all of the 2 ounces I had purchased but I don't think I will smoke the remainder unless I can find something with which it could be blended that it wouldn't merely overwhelm with its taste. I always feel that if anyone enjoys a given tobacco then it has some merit and it is not my intention to malign it. It is just not something that I can tolerate, much less enjoy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
★★★☆
Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Extra Strong

Great Lakeland blend, as anyone would expect from SG. Of all pipe tobaccos I've smoked, the most cigar-like, and one of the strongest. Pure dark leaves with almost no floral/soapy taste.

Slice a few thin flakes, rub them out, fill the pipe, sit back and enjoy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jaybee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jaybee (76)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

I was gifted a sample of this by a friend (221b) and was pleasantly surprised. It was one of those situations whereby the realization was much more pleasant than the anticipation. Not for the novice, this black beauty is meant to be sipped, not smoked. The first 1/4 bowl was a little strange as I searched my house to see if some electrical wiring was on fire...By mid-bowl it had settled down to a slightly sweet virginia taste. There's not an abundance of taste, rather subtle really, but it has plenty vitamin N and my senses were hyperactive for 30 minutes after the bowl was finished. Not an everyday affair for me, but certainly several times a week. Just don't drop it on the floor, someone might think the dog had an accident. Recommended..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Packer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Packer (56)
★★★☆
Very Strong Mild Very Full Strong

After reading the reviews contained here I decided to give this rope a try. This blend is so different than anything I have tried before, I have no reference point for comparison. This one stands on it's own. Black rope sums it up. Aroma is strong,earthy, cigar like, pure tobacc. I use a cigar cutter to shave off thin slices from this rope. I then rub out this oily leaf (much like a quality cigar) Lighting this rope is a several match affair. Keeping it lit is also a little bit troubleing. If I had reviewed this blend early on I would have given it 1 star. Some reviewers have said it is a love it, or hate it blend. At first I was closer to the hate end of the spectrum. Now after several tries, I am somewhere in between. My taste at this time craves the sweet fermented flavor of other Va. blends, but I am beginning to like the change that this blend offers. Most likely in time this blend will move up a notch or two. For now I give it

5/31/08 UPDATE.....As stated above this weed has moved up to a solid *

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kapt'n K Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kapt'n K (1)
★★★☆
Extremely Strong Mild Medium Tolerable to Strong

Cut it into quarters, unwound it, and let it dry for 20 min. Smoked it out of a Group 4 LB S. Musty, somewhat sweet and sour, somewhat salty, and not very bitter. Very strong tobacco taste not much else. Enjoyable for what it is, a super sonic kick in the ass. I like smoking it with my morning coffee when I come in for work. Nice jump start for the day.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Katxinba Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Katxinba (6)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Medium Unnoticeable

This is my first twist tobacco. It looks like the momified finger of...a dragon ;o). It has a subtle smell of dried figs and raisins. After reading many of the reviews on this tobacco, I was a bit afraid of the "Black XX beast", so I smoke it with a trusted briar.

I cut it in thins coins, and cut the coins in half an rub it. I let it dry for 15 mins ( the tobacco layers were tighly packed, as if they were melted).

The smoke is smooth, creamy, with a dry fig, newly cut willow wood and Virginia smell, developing into a subtle homemade custardly smell ( custard made with milk, cornflour, sugar and vanilla pods, not the industrial custard ;o). It is a very nice smell and taste. By the last third of the bowl, I can feel the nicotine tingling in the back of my neck. It is a very nice, dry and smooth smoke. I love it .

I rate it with three stars because of the pre-work required ( you need some time to devote for preparing it) so it will not be one of my "default" tobaccos, but I will always keep it at hand.

I don't give any rating on room note ( I never do). Enjoy it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Monk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Monk (2)
★★★★
Extremely Strong Medium Full Tolerable to Strong

This is, truly, one of the tobacs out there that fall into the "love it or hate it" category. It comes in an oily rope...strong and, at times, even a bit overwhelming..even for the experienced smoker. This is a tobac that brokes no argument. It is strong, full bodied and ready to satisfy even the most base nicotine desire of any smoker. Yet, unlike it's cousin, the brown rope, Black XX has a lot to recomend it. It is smooth, burning down to a fine, gray/white ash without even a hint of a bite, even if puffed with a heavy hand. Upon first lighting, it gives a hint of the Lakeland soap which quickly burns off leaving the smoker alone with nothing but the deep flavors of the stoved tobacco itself. This flavor matures throughout the bowl, burning clean and dry all the way down with ocassional hints of Lakeland flavor showing through, though never overpowering the pure, tobacco taste. The finish is long, the pipe is cool, and the overall experience is thoughtfull and to be relished long after the last ember has died. I truly find that Black XX is NOT the one dementional monster that many portray it as, but a strong, not-so-subtle, and flavorfull example of dark, stoved weed at its finest. Not a smoke for the neophite or the faint hearted, Black XX is a true treat for the studied smoker searching for a full and rich tobac that stands apart from the established ranks of the smoky, latika greats. ~Monk~

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarFire~ Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarFire~ (24)
★★★★
Extremely Strong None Detected Very Full Unnoticeable

Part 1 This is some good baccy folks,it packs well,and is a cool burner. After cutting some small coins off the rope then rubbing them out well and then drying it out all day I loaded up a small briar and went outside. Ive seen this stuff called "Black Death" and "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse having a tea party in your mouth" etc. So I was a bit apprehensive when I started the charring light.Wow,a big blast of virginias hit me,almost like FVF on steroids.The second light was even better,I could tell right away this was going to be a treat. The bacca burned cool and dry,nary a relight, and had absolutely no tongue bite,just lots of pure tobacco smoke,Very rich smoke,The flavor is Very stout and robust but no "horsemen" showed up.The XX burned so cool the briar didnt even really heat up,and the bacca burned to a nice dry white ash.I didnt experience any harshness or nicotine effects whatsoever so I loaded up a second bowl and had a similar smoke.

Part 2 A couple days later I cut some thin coins,rubbed 'em out,dried 'em for 45 mins. or so,loaded up and went outside.On the charring light I got some hints of asphalt or maybe roofing tar,Im not sure.I had a hard time getting it and keeping it lit.I kept puffing and seeking that pure virginia flavor I had just a couple days previous,Then out of nowhere came the Horsemen,and Black Death was the lead rider,and he brought along St. Nicotine the Terrible. Together they proceeded to give me a thrashing I wont soon forget,Blow after punishing Blow,A beating so severe I deeply regretted ever taking up the pipe. Im not certain if the drying time had anything to do with it,but thats what I suspect.Once I recover,I'll give an update. Please be careful with this stuff. Update Moderation is the key to the XX, let the coins dry out well,smoke it too moist and you'll puff hard to get it going,also take your time and enjoy.Puff fast and you'll pay the price.Slow down and relax and you'll be rewarded with a rich satisfying smoke.This can be a heavy hitter,so reach for it only when the mood strikes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Joey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Joey (9)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Mild Pleasant

Sorry this is so long but here goes...Well I must first say that after smoking a pipe for only about nine months now I still consider myself to be neophyte. That being said I had heard my friend Rafe mention this tobacco and so began the research. I read all of the reviews that you nice people have written about seeing fruit rats, drooling, swooning and was quite frankly impressed! It is not every day that you hear a genuine leather tongue say he was wooped!

Now the time came...a couple of nights ago I was at the Tinder Box in ATL and they were having a big fire sale (got the last tin of Murry's blended Royal Yacht they had for $6!) and as I walked around looking I spied this tin that said Black XX on it. Now you know what they say about curiosity. So for $6.00 I figured that if I didn't like it I could give it away or toss it.

After I got home I could not wait to open it up and see what I had invested in. Dog poop...but not just any dog poop. This dog poop was covered, and I mean COVERED in white crystels! Only recently have I learned what this means so I was even more excited!

So, this morning I took it out and cut off a couple of pieces of it and chopped them up with a butcher knife the same way I would celery, onions or whatever, diced them up real fine and then rubbed them out. Took about 30 seconds. Then I stuffed my Vintage Peterson 307 full and sat down with trash can nearby just in case...

Now mind you I was smoking on a FULL stomach. But here is my review, I know, FINALLY! LOL!

The first third of the bowl was very "full in taste". In otherwords it tasted totally like tobacco and very thick and heavy but there was no evidence of the nicotene. About a third of the way down the bowl my tongue started tingling and it got what I would call "spicy". It was about now that I got a tad light headed and could tell the nic was taking effect. Not overpowering by any means. Rather a nice simple buzz. Finally the last third of the bowl was a big surprise. It was almost as if someone had stuffed a piece of candy in my mouth. Kind of hard to describe really but it was absolutly plesant. It was simply sweet tasting to the end from this point and left a taste in my mouth that was sweet for about 2 hours after.

My roommate commented that he really liked the room note and that it smelled like one of those cheap cigars, swisher sweets or some such thing...the room note was very nice! And if you like big white billows of smoke this is definatly for you...I mean BIG SMOKE!

Now, I smoke U Flake pretty often and can tell you this, I get more buzzed off UF than I did today off of XX. That being said, perhaps it was because of the age of the XX that made it so good. I can tell you this. I am going to buy more and let it sit! I like it. Also it was fun to have a friend of mine over and see that he had the same experiance smoking it that I did. Very Plesant. Will write more about this after a couple of more smokes...

Joey

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pkloop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pkloop (41)
★★★★
Strong Extremely Mild Full Very Pleasant

Ahh.. My current favorite. The mean looking black rope. This tobacco is great. I love the "work" to get it smokeable and as other reviewer's have said every pipester should at least try a rope for that reason alone. But if they try Black XX they may fall in love with it. This is indeed a no-holds barred tobacco that doesn't play around with fruity flavorings and room notes. BUT as far as its room note I personally love it. As does my wife. In fact as I've said I think it is indeed "very pleasant". I can only describe room note as rich/earthy smelling which is also exactly how the rope tastes. True, this may not be for those new to tobaccos as it could overwhelm them. To those non-rookies however, your making a mistake by not trying this out. I find that a large bowl of this combined with a Jack Daniels on the rocks is the perfect close to a hectic day. So for those who enjoy there whiskey straight and their tobacco as well, would do well to stock up on this classic. reviewed 11/10/04

UPDATE 11/18/06 Still a favorite for me. This rope, with its earthy, rich taste just hits the spot for me everytime. I strongly encourage all pipesters to give this a shot...and if you dislike it I'll gladly take it off your hands! Yummy! Oh..1 more thing, this is about as bite free a tobacco as I've ever burned. You can puff this one up without fear. Zero Bite.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

zulujerk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zulujerk (134)
★★★☆
Extremely Strong Mild Extra Full Very Strong

This is one for the curiosity factor. It's difficult to peruse the online vendors with their fabulous pictures and great variety, and not come upon a rope.

Thick, dark, familiar in representation to something far less appealing. From these images, one finds another pull toward Tobacco Reviews, for some greater definition. Reading the many posts, I found myself imagining some torture chamber with an evil tobacconist--a sadist, wishing to punish those too ambitious.

To be fair, I would have ordered a sample sooner or later. There's so many great blends out there, it's difficult not to diversify. XX pretty much gives you exactly what you expect, a beating.

I thought this would taste like a dark, very dark Virginia--sweet, yet exceedingly robust. I was wrong on that count. It's nothing like I've ever tried. It's got a smoky taste, not like Latakia. It's more so like they sat this thing on the grill and fired up some briquettes. I don't suppose you'd call that a flavoring, or would you?

The strength overwhelms any taste of pure tobacco. I don't mean that to say there's a lack of quality leaf, or a muted presence. I simply suggest that the strength overpowers the senses so much, that one tends to forget what they're smoking. Above all, I get that faint, smoky vibe and a nicotine kick that could silence any doubter. This isn't a Nightcap high, or a 1792. It's pretty much beyond anything like that. Your head might spin, you might get palpitations, or sweat like mad. It really depends on your previous exposure to strong blends.

This oily, compacted menace means you'll have a ton of fun slicing this rope. XX is moist, somehow, and I'm not exactly sure why, other than it's wrapped tighter than you could imagine. How I'd love to compare a rope of Escudo before the cut. This is truly a beast...and it's exactly what I wanted.

Many complain endlessly about this product, which is a curious thing considering the very obvious connotations and lengthy reviews associated with XX's formidable existence. Yes, there are many who'll try to steer you in some other direction. Step into my office, and vacate your mind of such remarks...

Three of Four.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jackhackett Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jackhackett (76)
★★★☆
Very Strong None Detected Full Very Strong

Why didn't I figure out that this stuff has got to be either made for blending with other tobacco, made to be chewing tobacco, or made to be used as an indian vision-quest hallucinogenic BEFORE I loaded my pipe with it?

So, yes it's got rocket-to-the-moon nicotine content, but it is absolutely worth trying as it is full of rich and complex flavors that I have not experienced elsewhere.

But be aware that you're essentially handling a variant of the white lightning moonshine of pipe tobaccos. If the two "X's" are an indication of nicotine strength/content, I think I would be tempting fate to try SG's 3X ("xxx") version.

Cutting the stuff up is a bit of a chore but necessary, and while it's potent, it doesn't seem to leave any unpleasant traces in the briar, and it does burn quite well with some drying.

Former (or current) cigar smokers should like this quite a bit.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Keeper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Keeper (112)
★★★☆
Strong Very Mild Full Tolerable

An interesting experience to say the least. I was thrilled to finally try a rope tobacco. Though my sample was only a small chunk, and quite dry - I still had to cut and rub it into stringy flakes.

Others have said it - so I won't go over the same ground. Powerful and rich in texture, nicotine, taste and aroma. I found it to be one of those extremely potent experiences I'd probably only undertake once in a while. But as has been said - it definitely is worth trying and likely repeating.

The taste is even less floral than 1792 - and quite unlike any other topping I've experienced. It melds so nicely with the potent taste of tobacco that it virtually integrates. There is a latent and murky spice that simmers beneath the cool exterior of this leaf. It didn't bite or sour at all and remained fairly consistent through out the bowl.

One bowl lasts a good long time, and perfectly compliments a dark beer as others have stated.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sasha Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sasha (228)
★★★★
Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable

Huge, wrecking, pure power! This is really a challenging experience! It's a bit (euphemism) tricky to prepare it to smoke: I've tried to slice it with a cigar cutter and then leave the slices to dry a little. Useless. I've used a tobacco grinder to rub them out and then leave again to dry. A little better. The first impression is a smoky flavour, reminding of burnt wood. After few puffs your head starts turning, halfway the bowl you think Mike Tyson have punched your stomach, at the end of the bowl you find yourself shakin' St.Peter's hand at the Pearly Gates...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cigarnomo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cigarnomo (2)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Full Pleasant

Ok, I've read the reviews and now it is time to try it myself, well low and behold I walks into my tobacconist and there in a big jar sits a big black coil of a thing called xx Black Rope! Slice me off a hunk, say's I. Your gonna love it say's he. So off to my smoking cave I go to try out this stuff. As recommended by my very knowledgeable proprieter I slice some "coins" about the thickness of a nickel off and then slice them in half. I let them set a spell, about 6 or7 hours I suppose and return to find them nice and ripe for smoking. I then proceed to rub them out, and rub you will my friends because this stuff is the real deal, I began to notice that this was high grade tobacco, almost cigar leaf like. A M/M Cob was brought into service for this inagural smoke because I did not know what to expect and did not want to taint any of my briars. Light up was easy and uneventful except to say that I was surprised at how deliciously mild the first few puffs seemed to be! Complexity... the only word to describe what I was experiencing, Ok, rich and full bodied would work too. Now here comes the good part, if you are a current or former cigar smoker like myself and you have been looking for that "holy grail" of pipe tobaccos this is it! I discoverd that if you let your pipe rest for a while and relight for DGT you will experience flavor similar or better than say a dark Padron or a La Gloria Cubana Serie 7. Nicotine? You bet but not overwhelming for an experienced smoker, this one is not for sissy's or newbies that don't have tolerence for nicotine for it will kick you a@$. Finishes to a fine white/gray ash, Highly Recommend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ajaj Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ajaj (69)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Very Strong

I don't smoke this everyday but the quality of the tobacco is superb. This is real tobacco; wimps need not apply. I love the dark earthy tones with powerful waves of smoke on a hot summer afternoon . Try this with your favorite beer or single malt and you'll be rewarded. Dry, earthy, gothic. Picture yourself at a darkened coal miners pub, laughing at your mate's latest screw-up, beer-foamed moustache, and strong blue smoke billowing from your pipe...you have SG black Rope.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

imago Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
imago (63)
★★★☆
Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

This is a rope tobacco which reminds me of well-oiled leather in texture. In flavour and aroma, it is quite strong, although not unpleasantly so. It was difficult for me to keep lit at first; subsequent experiences with it were a bit more pleasant as I gave the tobacco some time to dry out after I had shaved off and rubbed out what I wished to smoke.

Be warned: don't do as I do and smoke this stuff when you've consumed nothing more than four cups of strong black coffee. It packs a real nicotine-wallop.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lvnvbiker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lvnvbiker (15)
★★★★
Very Strong Mild Very Full Tolerable to Strong

I have not been able to stop smoking this since I got it! This is the real smoking experiance, from slicing the rope to the light dry ash it is heaven! Stong as an Ox no holds barred tobacco. I can only compare this to a great cigar in terms of flavor, it reminds me of some of the better Cubans I've sampled.. Smoke this in a small bowl!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Minz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Minz (10)
★★★☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Very Full Very Strong

Whew! I have tosay this is strong stuffZ! And I like it that way. Smmoth and spicy on the tongue with just a little bit of sweetness chiming in now and then. Very little bite either, even with my enthusiastic puffing. This is what I reach for when on days like today, coffee alone isn't cutting it.

If you've never tried it, give it a whirl. But be warned, this smoke isn't for the faint of heart.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Danno Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Danno (87)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Full Strong

Friends, this is pipe tobacco. Dark, strong and foreboding in the tin. Being my first "rope spun" experience, I loaded up a bowl in a pre-40's Comoy, after shaving generous slices from the coil with a pocketknife. I had chosen to smoke in the company of an old friend, for mortal and medical support. Soon the room was ensconced in a dark fog, which smelled alarmingly like a barn burning down. The leaf was very wet, needing many relights. In a short time I had settled into a slow even draw, which brought peppery puffs rushing onto my palate. There appears to be no casing of any kind, just raw tabac. A thoroughly different experience, to be entered into slowly(and sitting down). As one would guess from the chocolate color of the coil, there is nicotine aplenty. Newbies need not apply!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Grundie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Grundie (26)
★★★☆
Strong Medium Full Tolerable to Strong

A good tobacco if you want a quick hit of tobacco satisfaction. The rope has a mild virginia odour to it, but I understand African tobacco's are used in it's manufacture. I would descibe the favour as a richer more refined version of Condor, but with a pleasant leathery edge. I gut the rope in to 1/2" segements and then quater the segements and then rub out. Although he flours are refined and very pleasnt, this tobacco does have a serious nicotine kick so bear that in mind. The room note is not unpleasant, quite sweet but not aromatic. However the intensity of the room note can be offputting to some people. A great smoke to relax with, perhaps with a good Scotch or stout in your hand.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

KEF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
KEF (13)
★★★★
Extremely Strong Very Strong Medium to Full Strong

This comes in a rope of a smaller diameter than the brown rope, and it is black and oily on the outside, but once cut the inside appears a bit more chocolate colored. Not much of a scent unlighted. It is oiler than the brown rope. Quality tobacco, and it obviously is put together well. I cut it into 1/4 inch slices and break it up. Tough to light, but once lit stays lit well. Flavor on lighting is almost a sharp/sweet licorice taste with heavy tobacco underpinning. The nicotine content is high, and by the bottom of a mid-sized bowl I'm done smoking for a while. Rubbed out and mixed with a lighter and sweeter ribbon cut virginia (like Apertif) is a great smoke. Alone this is a bit too strong for anything but a small bowl. It does not seem to leave any significant taste in a pipe. Overall, an unusual and spicy taste. For anyone who is up to trying something "different" and very satisfying, I'd recommend trying it. 8 of 10. - Kelly

Nobody has rated this review yet.