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Original formula Balkan smoking mixture was created in London at the beginning of the century by the master of Tobacco Blenders who first combined the aromatic pleasures of the choicest of Macedonia and Latakia leaf with the richness of Old Virginia to give the pipe smoker an unrivaled smoking pleasure.

BrandBalkan Sasieni
Blended ByPeter Stokkebye
Blend TypeEnglish
ContentsLatakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
FlavoringNone
CutRibbon
Packaging50g Tin
CountryDK
ProductionUnknown
Where to Buy PipesAndCigars
4noggins.com
SmokingPipes.com
Product Image
Strength
Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Tolerable

Favorite Of 18 Users

3.0
205 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
79
3 star:
64
2 star:
42
1 star:
20
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aviviljoen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
aviviljoen (18)
★★★★
Very Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant

I've been wanting to smoke this for a long time, and finally got my hands on a tin. Couldn't wait to open it. Expectations sky-high. Oh, this stuff smells good!

Packed it in one of my better pipes, settled in front of the tv, ready to watch David Attenborough, anticipating a very good smoke ahead.

My first impression was that this blend is soooo much lighter than I expected. I was expecting a smokey, heavily latakia-flavoured hour. What I got instead, was much more subtle. In a world where tobacco blends are compared to bourbons, whiskeys, coffee and chocolate, this reminded me of fine red wine. Not the taste, but the complexity. There are nuances to be discovered in this tobacco. Everything is so well-balanced, so expertly blended. This is really to be enjoyed in a contemplative way, on a quiet evening.

I found this tobacco to be perfectly balanced. It burns well, and it leaves a fine aftertaste which lingers. The room note was excellent. What an experience!

I can see myself smoking this tobacco for many years to come. Definitely a firm favourite.

13 people found this review helpful.

Colonel Panic Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Colonel Panic (42)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Pouch Aroma: Musty Latakia for the most part, along with some sweet Virginia undertones.

Appearance: This tobacco is probably 75% dark brown/black, perhaps 15% medium brown and 10% yellow and pale green, in a short, narrow ribbon cut.

Packing and Lighting: Being in short ribbons, this tobacco packed quite easily in my old Hardcastle "Hallmark" pot and lit up easily with very little crown. The initial flavor was very smoky and rich, but with some initial sharpness and sweet tones that I consider a a warning sign for potential tongue-bite. Still, there was some promise here as I picked up undertones of holiday spice and some of the mustiness of old leather.

Exposition: My main problem is that the initial light-up flavor didn't last - what started out mouth watering and spicy rapidly turned sour and musty. There were still hints of what lay beneath, but I was having trouble picking them out.

OK, fifteen minutes into the bowl and things are a little better - some of the sourness has turned darkly sweet and the mustiness is reduced. There is a wonderful sense of rich, smoked meat that I get from Balkan blends, but it's rather thin in this one...is it the pipe?

The Story: I've hit the halfway point now, and things aren't much better. The sweetness has turned from dark brown sugar to something like cheap sulphured molasses, the spice flavor has faded to a whisper and the latakia just tastes...ashy. I tried dumping the ash, using pipe cleaners, letting it rest for a few minutes, all to no avail.

Denouement: Down at the bottom, the tobacco didn't want to stay lit and the flavor had turned bitter and sharp, both factors conspiring to give me a mild case of tongue bite. Argh! I think I'm going to just dump the rest out.

8 people found this review helpful.

cobacco Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cobacco (46)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I feel very fortunate to have discovered Balkan Sasieni. To be honest, the tin just about scared me off with it's burnt rubber aroma. But then I was reminded of the smoked green tea that completely won me over upon drinking it. All I can say is what a pleasant surprise! Perfect moisture level, perfect burn, and very smooth taste. I pick up a very unique flavor, hard to describe, but in addition to the mild spices and smoky taste, there is a hint of clay taste. I know that clay is an odd way to describe a flavor, but this is a good taste and it is hard to put a name on. I don't think that the room note is much to brag about, but Balkan Sasieni does leave a very pleasant aroma in my beard. If I had to choose one tobacco to take on a week-long outing, this would be it. A 3.5 star rating gets bumped to 4 for value at $6.35/50g.

Pipe Used: cob

Purchased From: smokingpipes.com

7 people found this review helpful.

Alguhan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alguhan (140)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

My experience and notes about this tobacco dates to my days in which I was having emotions when smelling the latakias. Nowadays this blend still catches my attention.

The latakia content of this blend is very well balanced. It is not hiding the high quality virginia and oriental addition. Beside the nice flavors of virginia and orientals you are having the irresistable taste and deep coolness of the latakia.

If you are a fan of balkan blends this will be a unforgetable experience for you. If you are not, well, it worths to have it in your "tasted tobaccos" list. A real Balkan..

6 people found this review helpful.

mitchb Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mitchb (1)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I used top smoke the Balkan Sobranie for years before it became discontinued. Many swear this tobacco is not the same as the original Sobranie. It is not the same but that said I still lose myself in the smoke when smoking this tobacco. I don't remember the Sobranie being that much better. I enjoy the Balkan Saseini as if the Sobrani was not the yardstick to measure the Saseini but the Saseini is delicious on it's own right.I discovered Penzance and although it is delicious I would stock the Saseini but will only stock 20 tins Penzance. It is hard to find good pipe tobacco in Vancouver Canada.I woud recommend this blend to anyone. It is my favorite this far. I tried MCcellands 2030 mixture which was good but the Bill Baily's Balkan Blend tastes a bit dull for me.The Penzane Bulk was enjoyed but the Penzance in Tin is worth writing another review. I prefer the Saseini though. UPDATE 12/15/09 I still enjoy this blend the most and find I do not tire of it. I have Penzance in tins which are aging and I have a half full tin I occasionally smoke but for my alltime blend I find the Balkan Saseini is my brand.I can smoke it and I can chew it which I do not do . Point is this tobacco works for me in all conditions. If a smoke is wet I still enjoy this tobacco. I love the stuff. It gratifies me more than the Sobranie did when I smoked it but I smoke only a few bowls per day now. I find the less I smoke the more I savour and I find myself savoring this tobacco three times a day.

5 people found this review helpful.

Pipe Newb Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe Newb (40)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Tin note: Super strong musty orientals and smokey lat. This is one of the most potent tins I've ever cracked open.

Cut is random and a slight pain, there are "stick" bits of stem intertwined with the coarse ribbon. I let a portion dry on paper while I rub down the sticks and load them, along with the ribbon in my Stanwell featherweight.

Light and initial char - Oriental upfront, and not much more. Musty, caraway with cumin spice, and very savory. Not a lot of bready or even bright notes.

Midway through the bowl, I'm getting a bit more virginia, and a slight hint of a potential bite but that subsides. This is a particularly dry smoke (dry as in moisture, and in flavor), there is no gurgle despite smoking in a full bent. Typically I get a lot more sweetness in an English (which is typically pretty dry, so this one is REALLY dry) from either the Virginias or the Lat, nothing like that here.

Smell was great, a very savory, coriander and caraway seed spice that was thick and very rich.

As I got down to the final dottle and char, i got an incredibly strong ammoniated taste. I've experienced this before with other Balkan/English (including ones I really love), and I can only surmise it's a byproduct of leaf fermentation and "steaming" in the bowl. However as soon as I had this flavor, I dumped a coarse, pebbly gray ash into my ashtray, there was no tobacco left - so I really can only blame myself for this off taste, and not the tobacco.

This blend really seems to be one-sided. I did enjoy it and completed the whole bowl, but while smoking did wish for a bit more boldness and complexity.

I'll have to give this a second shot. As it stands it really wasn't great. Maybe I'm just disappointed that the tin had such a righteous smell but the smoke was lackluster.

Pipe Used: Stanwell Featherweight

Age When Smoked: Unknown

Purchased From: 4Noggins

4 people found this review helpful.

Nameshy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nameshy (1)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

Since Balkan Sasieni can hardly be mentioned without Balkan Sobranie immediately being brought up, it's hard not to follow this well-worn path.

In the late 1990s when the ever-valiant Greg Pease took a blind taste test between a Sobranie that had reached the end of its road and an upstart Sasieni and misidentified them, I was making my own non-blind comparisons.

Sobranie white had been my continuous everyday favorite since the late 1950s and my tests ended with a sense of relief. My transition from 200g cans of Sobranie to 200g cans of Sasieni was a very smooth one, although I soon discovered that the 50g pouches didn't always preserve the quality. On the other hand, the Sasieni bulk turned out to be very good.

After the recent mysterious delays in shipments my current order arrived reeking of cherry with a taste to match, and burned hot. When I returned it the dealer wrote that they checked it out and it seemed to them that it was consistent with previous shipments and hasn't changed. He added that since they had no other complaints he believed this was an isolated incident.

I give four stars to Balkan Sasieni for what it has been and for what I hope it will continue to be - and also hope that there's not something rotten in Denmark.

4 people found this review helpful.

Houndstooth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Houndstooth (16)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

When I first opened the tin, I wasn't super impressed by the initial smokes. I was glad that I was able to smoke it straight out of the tin though.

While I know there's history here and that that this isn't the original, (nor is it Sobranie, which I never tried either) I've had enough Latakia/Oriental blends to say that this is very decent stuff. And yes, certainly there is likely better, but for how much more money? The price is just too right, and it's also readily available these days.

As far as it compares to Peter S Balkan Supreme- that's got way more Latakia. I find all the PS tobaccos to be Lat. bombs. Don't get me wrong, I like Latakia, but I'm tired of being beaten in the face by it. I'm a Balkan guy now, thank you.

I've been smoking Sasieni sparingly since it really started to grow on me; I might not be able to order another tin soon. What secured my sympathies for this blend is a note of clove which probably is not actually clove, but some element sure does come off like it. I didn't detect it at first, but within several weeks of opening the tin, it's there now. Subtle and complex as well, but the snobs might not agree. No bite either.

I'd consider buying this in a pound bag if it was available. 4 stars, and yes I know I'm reverent.

Pipe Used: Comoy Wembley & others

Age When Smoked: purchased late fall 2013

Purchased From: Cigars Int'l

3 people found this review helpful.

Demetri Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Demetri (100)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

A pleasantly well balanced English blend, well suited for all day consumption. The Virginias are matured, what Orientals are here are well balanced and not perfumey in the least, the Latakia is fairly mellow (which is nice in a Stokkebye blend, for a change). I suspect it a very close sibling to Proper English, if not indeed the same but tinned. Reasonably priced for an import.

Passes desert island test with room to spare.

Pipe Used: Briar billiards

Age When Smoked: New production

Purchased From: Emerson's Cigars - VA Beach

Similar Blends: Peter Stokkebye Proper English.

3 people found this review helpful.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (203)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

A very nice blend with interesting characteristics. It opens with a blast of Oriental spices. As the bowl progresses the Orientals mellow ever so slightly and the Latakia begins to make it's presence known. Eventually a near perfect balance is achieved between the two. It remains spicy from beginning to end. Not sure, but some of the spice may be coming from the Virginias in the background. All in all, well worth trying.

3 people found this review helpful.

scottyspipesebay Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
scottyspipesebay (25)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium Very Pleasant

Balkan Sasieni. I am blown away. It has no bite. It is actually mild enough for short inhale, which for me adds to the smoking experience and above all, the flavor. The room note is sweet and delicious. The addition of Macedonian Oriental and Latakia to Virgina is pure heaven. No drying time. It packs effortlessly; burns SLOWLY, if on the warm side, so I tend to treat it with care. I detect excellent fresh-cut Honduras mahogany, rose and a lot of the same flavor characteristics of a good Mondesino maduro cigar. An absolute masterpiece of the tobacconist arts. Another huge plus for me is the fact that I can smoke this to the bottom of the bowl, and it's the first blend I've ever been able to that with and say I loved it to the end.

The tins are downright cheep at pipesandcigars.com. An added plus is that it doesn't leave my pipe smelling like tar the way the Dunhill's do. I'm sold. This is my favorite blend. An instant favorite. 4 stars. 5 if I could give it. I will be buying several tins at a time for cellaring, as this MUST age to some kind of heavenly thing. I really don't see how it could get better with time, but only time will tell.

Update 7/28/2012: I've discovered that another great aspect of this blend is that as many times as you let the pipe go out; once you fire it back up, the flavor and aroma of Balkan Sasieni remains the same as your second light...perfect. No change whatsoever. So many other blends that I enjoy taste completely different when I go back later for a relight. So bad sometimes, that I wind up tossing it in the dirt. Regardless: This is without a doubt, my favorite blend. An absolute must for lovers of Balkan blends.

Update 9/12/12: I have discovered the joys of blending. I have a close second to my favorite here. In fact, I may be a little partial. Folks, if you haven't taken the dive yourself, read up. Learn. Spend a little money any before you know it, you'll be blending things you might not have thought possible. Always buy quality...

3 people found this review helpful.

zulujerk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zulujerk (134)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

Many have commented on the value of this blend, nearly a third less than that of comparable Balkans, and Sasieni has scored high marks for its relative fullness, attributes that have made it quite popular.

The blend is obviously hampered by the adoration and legendary properties of its predecessor, Balkan Sobranie, which isn't quite fair. There's no Yenidje in here, but there's plenty of spicy Macedonian leaf--Dubek, or whatever it may be. Your nose will tingle like sucking on a cough drop, clearing away the sinuses.

Sasieni smokes well, if predictable, with a hefty portion of Latakia--its presence in the tin pushing about fifty percent. A bit greater than medium in body, Sasieni is a filling smoke, and rightly stands alongside its peers (and my favorite Balkan, Charing Cross).

I can understand the popularity here, and I would say the reputation is well earned. If Sasieni should fall like his brother, I believe the family would be missed.

Nice tin art, by the way.

Four of Five

3 people found this review helpful.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Some people compares this tobacco to BSOM. Although they share some characteristics, they are quite different. Compton's Macedonian Mixture is a bit closer, and maybe Charing Cross too, but they are all excellent tobaccos on their own right. Out of these, Sasieni is the mildest and mellowest, so it should be the choice for those who love Balkans but are often overwhelmed by the taste.

3 people found this review helpful.

asteroidhunter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
asteroidhunter (2)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Very Full Tolerable

I prefer this blend over any of the other Balkans I've tried including Bill Bailey's blend.

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipeline Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipeline (206)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Jan. 2006: This seems identical to Balkan Supreme. Both are blended by Peter Stokkebye.

April 1, 2005: This is a review of a post-James Norman U.S. distribution .50g pouch. This probably does not matter, since James Norman-era and current production are allegedly from the same blending house (P. Stokkebye).

This looks like a drugstore blend due to the paper/plastic/mylar foldover pouch ala Captain Black, et al. If you equate drugstore packaging with mediocre leaf, flavored with low quality toppings (as I do), Balkan Sasieni is a pleasant exception.

If you have never smoked a Balkan blend before (as I was when I first tried this years ago) and you are an aromatics smoker or a burleymeister, this is not the place to start. Try McClelland's Syrian Full Balkan or Frog Morton to get used to the tanginess of Oriental leaf and major Latakia. Better yet, get thee to Skiff Mixture or And So To Bed to start with mild English blends. Cornell & Diehl might have some suggestions, also.

Balkan Sasieni is edgy, but not razor sharp, deep but not brooding, and subtly sweet (from dark, ribbon and flake Virginia), but not bright or goopy. Smoke this fast and thou shalt burn, and give thyself ample ventilation to avoid ocular dilation and respiratory arrest. The Turkish is the focal point throughout the smoke, closely followed by delicious Latakia (I suspect a mixture of Latakias here) and supported and reined by quality Virginia last.

Balkan Sasieni smokes easily once lit, burns cleanly, thoroughly and is dry to the end. I do not pack the bowl with it firmly or loosely, as it is unforgiving. One of the few Balkans I can actually smoke back to back bowls of if I pay attention to heat. The intensity of the flavor says use a smallish bowl, but the long, thin strands argues for a larger bowl or wider opening- but I would anticipate heat with too much tobacco-surface to air ratio.

The more I smoke this, the more I like it. It travels with me now. I would not call it elegant, but it is not shabby or uncouth. It is complex, without opacity or high-minded appeal.

It reminds me quite a bit of Paul Olsen's MOB 7000 and Dunhill's London Mixture (faintly of 965). Not as refined as Caravan, but Balkan Sasieni is perhaps a bit more chipper. It has much more going for it than Aperitif or Durbar. This might end someone's allegiance to the Frog Morton series. Just get some experience first.

3 people found this review helpful.

Counselor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Counselor (10)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

I love the heavenly pouch aroma--Latakia and turkish, smidgeon of sweeter Virginias--with notes of spice and leather. Upon lighting, I taste the Latakia mostly, with the Turkish soon following. The Virginia stays mostly in the background, but coming through at the end of most puffs. This is a moderately complex blend, dominated by a "peaty" quality and a definite tang;I also pick up on the spice and leathery notes at times during the smoke. In a big bowl, I have had the nicotine creep up on me by the end of the smoke, but I still put the strength somewhere bewteen medium and full. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars--not the Grail of my tobacco quest, but my mainstay English/Balkan mixture. As an added bonus, my wife likes the room aroma.

3 people found this review helpful.

Joeray Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Joeray (61)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Another 4 star tobacco blend that I had smoke. This blend came with a nice package tin and the tin note is good, smokey herbal tobacco smells little bit strong when I open it for the first time. Dark brown, black and yellow gold tobacco mixed well and pleased my eyes so well.

Like usual, I pack it with 3 layer method and this time I'm using my Ben Wade Standard pipe. It is a poker barrel shaped bowl, a tall bowl. Lot of senior pipesmokers tolds me if smoking English/Oriental blends using a wide short pipe is more better to get all nuances, taste and flavor and to catch the complexity and tall bowls are for virginia. I agree with that but this time I want to give a little bit "ghost flavor" of smokey blends to my Ben Wade pipe.

With a nice cherring light this tobacco burn quite well on my pipe. The first strike is spice and peppery taste fill my mouth and touch my tongue. This is the signs if I must smoke and draw this stuff properly. A smooth and long draw is proper way to enjoy this tobacco, draw it with rush and hurry just ruin the pleasure and just make lost all the nuances of this nice blend.

This is a well balanced blend and smokes great at my pipe. The spice, peppery, smokey, and the grassy is mixed so well at this blend, taste so firm and subtle. A very decent smoke, and it give me more then an hour of pleasure on full packed pipe, the strength is medium and not overwhalming. Not difficult to maintain the light and at the ending, it just a nice smooth white ash at the bottom of the chamber.

Pipe Used: Ben Wade Standard

Age When Smoked: unknown

Purchased From: Indonesian Local Tobacconist

Similar Blends: Sillem's London Blend.

2 people found this review helpful.

Perique Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Perique (84)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Presentation is ribbon cut, mostly dark and medium, with some light brown tobaccos. Tin note is a nice balance of Latakia and Oriental tobaccos, with minimal mustiness and a savory aroma with just a tiny hint of natural sweet amid a base of exotic spice, leather and pine. The tobacco is at optimal moisture level and requires little to no drying time. This blend takes a match well and is off and going after the charring light and one true light. Copious amounts of thick, creamy smoke are produced.  

This is a remarkably smooth blend, starting out mild then leaning towards medium in strength and exhibiting rich, full tobacco flavors. Balkan Sasieni's strength is a harmonious balance of proportion with the savory Orientals and the familiar leathery and earthy flavors of Latakia. The Virginias bring a slight, subtle touch of natural sweetness to round out the edges of this savory blend.  Overall, the blend leans towards the Orientals and is no "Lat-bomb".  Latakia here is in just the right condimental proportion. 

 As expected of a good Balkan blend, Sasieni smokes with absolutely no bite.  There is a very rich, creamy mouth-feel here that exceeds the expectations of the otherwise medium strength blend.  The final third of the bowl amplifies the Latakia component, translating into a mustier, damp leaf flavor that, still rounded out by the Orientals, is not unpleasant. Virginias here are simply a light condiment touch to an otherwise creamy blend that caresses the mouth without zest, tang, or bite. 

Overall a good medium Balkan blend, rich and creamy, with the expected full mouth-feel.  Recommended for those who enjoy a good Balkan without gratuitous Latakia overload.  I appreciate the lack of tangy, ketchupy notes often found in more Virginia-forward English blends.  The Balkan, Oriental-forward style means Sasieni smokes and burns very dry, down to a small amount of clean, grey ash. 

2 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (610)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

For a little while, I had a love/hate relationship with this blend. I bought it because I was told it was my treasured Balkan Sobranie. Well, it isn't. This doesn't have the hint of soda that Sobranie had, and it's spicier, without a hint of sweetness. Those are about the only differences. I've smoked a few pouches of this over several years, and sometimes, one pouch would be spicier than another. I didn't like buying it, not knowing which version I was going to get, thus the love/hate comment. When it was less spicier, I thought it was more complex because the other components got to shine, and I liked that much better than the spicier pouches. Whether quality control has changed since my last go at this blend (which was around 2003), I don't know, but I'm rating it three stars for the version I liked best.

2 people found this review helpful.

bigtime Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bigtime (2)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

Interesting how reviews can be all over the board. So I'll add mine. The good: the moisture content was perfect out of the can, lights easily, stays lit better than most other tobaccos I smoke (ribbon cut the reason?), smoked to the end with one light, and I don't vacuum. The bad: uninspiring taste. Little character. Not a horrible taste, just "--Oh well--, I'm smoking a pipe" kinda feeling. The ugly: The name just drew me in. Generally I am a Balkan kinda guy. but a rose----

Pipe Used: Edwards algerian briar

Age When Smoked: new

Purchased From: internet

2 people found this review helpful.

balkan_boy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
balkan_boy (30)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I'm sitting on the balcony right now smoking it. That's because of it's "tolerable" room note. A decent smoke, my wife hates it however. Kind of light because there isn't much latakia, Macedonian leaf is present but not overwhelming. Didn't taste any VA so far. Nothing memorable about it, but as a fan of Balkan tobaccos, I enjoy each and everyone of them. Perfect moisture from the tin, burns well, orientals are main course, tin aroma is awesome, poor on latakia, lacks depth and complexity, aaand..... that's about it.

2 people found this review helpful.

brogreggblues Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
brogreggblues (45)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

I wanted to like this blend because I love the combination of VA/Lat/Oriental. Unfortunately, it didn't work for me. I didn't think this blend was terrible, but I don't want any more of it. Burned hot, bit my tongue. Tastes fairly one-dimensional. Smoke Penzance instead.

2 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (513)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have been smoking Balkan Sasieni on and off for the past three years. I would describe it as “reliable.” It was love at first puff, but over time it kind of fell by the wayside. I am again smoking it and my tins are all from the last two sleeves I purchased in 09'. So with that in mind, I find BS to be a fairly straight forward Balkan blend, whose moisture content is near perfect upon opening the tin. It greets the nose with a wonderful of leathery pungency and greets the eyes with the typical medium English appearance. BS isn't very complex and therein lies the problem for me. It doesn't have the complexity (for me, but maybe not for others) that I am looking for. Now, three years later, the Virginia's have sweetened and it gives the blend an extra dimension. BS is easy to pack, and it burns cleanly all the way to the bottom of the bowl with no bite. Toss in the fact the price point is low for a tinned blend of this quality and I regret not cellaring more of it. I think BS is an excellent choice to begin a journey into Balkans and I would recommend it.

2 people found this review helpful.

pipelovingcalvinist Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipelovingcalvinist (68)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I have smoked two tins of this stuff over a period two years and I don't believe I shall smoke it again. Balkan Sasieni consistently lets me down. At times a rich creamy smokiness will come through but is quickly replaced by a sour taste. If one likes a rich "Balkan" they should try Steven Books' Irish Man's 5 O'clock and gift any remaining Balkan Sasieni to some novice pipe smoker who has yet to develop a palate.

Soli Deo gloria!

2 people found this review helpful.

tpatriarche Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tpatriarche (23)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This mixture is strictly for those who like the aromatic "Turkish" varietals - Yenidje, etc. - what used to be called "Egyptian" (although neither term is really geographically accurate), not the typical English Mix with Latakia as the only exotic aromatic. That said, I wanted much more of the "Turkish" aroma than this offered, so I was disappointed.

For those new to the tobacco world, let me mention in passing that properly speaking "aromatic" refers strictly to the natural aroma of the tobacco (after fermentation, smoke-drying, etc.), whereas other aromas (vanilla, chocolate, brandy, etc.) should be called flavouring or casing, as noted on this site in the review sidebar. This distinction has been confused by the manufacturers of popular Cavendish blends labelling their flavoured mixes as "full aromatic" etc.

I have read elsewhere that this blend was produced according to the original Balkan Sobranie formula by some of the original blenders of that famous mix after the name was bought by another company and the blend toned down to a Latakia mix with no exotics. I find this hard to believe; I smoked the original Balkan Sobranie for years, and this is not a patch on it - nothing like the strong character of that blend. The room note of the old original was powerful, distinctive and persistent (you either loved it or hated it), whereas Sasieni has a quite mild room note.

I found this tobacco somewhat harsh, though no worse than most other Balkan blends, with a fair bit of bite. I could detect no artificial casing or flavouring, which in a true Balkan blend is as it should be. The room note is either "pleasant" or "tolerable" depending on personal taste. I only recommend it because blends with the true Yenidje topnote are becoming hard to find.

2 people found this review helpful.

meanmrmustard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
meanmrmustard (34)
★★★★
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Is this the original Balkan Sorbane? Close, but no cigar. That does not mean this is an inferior blend. Quite the contrary, I found this to be a very nice English Oriental, with a bit more of a smoky taste than the original Sorbane. A quality smoke, smooth, rich and not overwhelming. I like it. Is the difference between the Sorbane and Sasieni extreme. No, but I think this one will certainly tie neck and neck with quality of flavor. If they took this one off the market, it too would become the Holy Grail for some.

2 people found this review helpful.

Peter Zorg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Peter Zorg (34)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

No need to compare Balkan Sasieni to other existing or past balkans. This tobacco is just great. I happened to have finished a 2 oz tin so quickly that I had to rush (too late) to order some more. This tobacco is not too mild, really well balanced. The smoky taste is just OK for me. It is in my top five (which is currently, with no order: Spilman, 965, Sasieni, Penzance, Escudo). I would like to find a better balkan, but.... I really envy those lucky guys who still have some Sobranie on hand !

UPDATE (Apr2010): One of the best tobacco I ever smoked (with GL Pease Odyssey)

2 people found this review helpful.

Loboatomy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Loboatomy (36)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

First off, it is important to remember that this is a BALKAN type tobacco, not a traditional english. The emphasis is on the oriental tobaccos, not the virginia or the mindblowing latakia. (I know, I know, Latakia IS a type of oriental leaf). The original Balkan Sobranie had the (Macedonian?) Yenidje leaf as it's oriental component. I have an Albanian friend who instructed his wife to bring me a kilo of some form or another of albanian mountain tobacco on her initial trip to the US (They were rural Tosk from a tobacco producing area), unfortunately she was assessed a tax at the airport entering the US and not understanding that I would have gladly reimbursed her, she let the customs agents keep it--one can only dream of what I may have gotten.I've had the fortune of sampling out of a 30 year old tin of the Original Balkan Sobranie that my father has tucked away, and I can honestly say that the Sasieni, in my opinion, carries the spirit of the old stuff with it, if not it's undefinable richness and body. Pretty damn good for a balkan type blend especially for the price. The pouch I'm smoking out of now is one that I've had tucked away unopened for at least four years and it is rife with the leathery yet creamy, nutty flavor that one expects from a balkan. I've been smoking Stokkebyes Balkan supreme here and there for my Balkan fix and I must say that they are similar enough but the Sasieni seems to have a little more nutty oriental note to it where the Balkan supreme relies more on the resinous overtones of the Latakia. All in all, I think I'll be trying to locate more Sasieni in the near future as I'm getting more of a taste for this type of tobacco these days...

2 people found this review helpful.

Meerschaum Man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Meerschaum Man (85)
★☆☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

It has been years since I've burned the Sobranie, unfortunately. This incarnation has none of the magic that I remember. On this, my first purchase, I chose wisely to obtain a small amount. The contents of the pouch had long since dryed out and required artful resurrection by steam. It's not a bad blend, simply inadequate. Maybe a coarser cut would benefit the smoking experience. To me, it seems an unfinished work - incomplete, where some of the elements left out prove to be the better parts. I think I'll keep my memories without further desecration by this feeble offering.

Meerschaum Man Smoking a no name rusticated bent meer acquired long ago

2 people found this review helpful.

Fofo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fofo (81)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

Balkan Sasieni, to me, is the same as Balkan Supreme (bulk). Some people detect a difference, I don't.

Balkan Sasieni is good, but I get a better deal in bulk.

Good, Latakia forward blend with a strong oriental component. The cut is easy to pack and light though it burns a little fast.

Comes at the right moisture level right out of the tin, which is a little on the dry side but still pliable.

Try it and also try Balkan Supreme in bulk. If you agree they are the same thing, then stick with the bulk version (cheaper)

1 person found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (132)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

A very good and true Balkan blend. True because the orientals are definitely out in the front of the lat on this blend with the Virginia merely along for the ride.

A nice blend that will smoke cool and will not leave you with the dreaded lat mouth. I recommend this blend, but will likely not buy much more of it as my tastes go more for the creamy lats such as Blue Mountain, Penzance or Three Oaks Syrian, rather than the more sour blends such as this one. I also think B Sasieni is not as well balanced as the aforementioned blends.

It definitely has its fans and if this flavor profile sounds like your preference, then you will probably like it too. If pressed to compare it to something, I would probably say Odyssey, but I would give Odyssey the edge.

1 person found this review helpful.

beercritic Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
beercritic (12)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

First tin, second bowl. So I ordered 5 more. I usually grab a Lat or Nic bomb, but there's just a wonderful balance here. It won't replace Ten Russans, but it will handily fit into my Rotation. Frog Morton didn't make the cut. FM is just too mild. I'll finish it off, but add some Latakia & Perique to get it up to a more respectable level. Really wanted to like FM, partly because the art is so cool.

Edited: Now that I have a meer, this really shines. Started my 2nd tin, & I'll have 15 cellared when my next order arrives. Damn, this is grand stuff at a great price.

Pipe Used: churchwarden & meer

Age When Smoked: 2 weeks old & 3 months old

Purchased From: P&C

1 person found this review helpful.

Michael Kindt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Michael Kindt (12)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Despite the longing we have for many blends of the past, I contend we are living in a golden age of pipe tobacco. Never before have so many blends from so many sources with such high quality been available to Joe Pipe Smoker. When our nannies in Washington ban internet tobacco purchasing and/or shipping--which they will eventually, mark my words--we will all look back longingly on these days as we cough our way through pipefuls of Captain Black and Borkum Riff.

I've never tried Balkan Sobranie, but I've heard the hype. Balken Sasieni is supposed to be yet another attempt at recreating it. I'm sure Balkan Sobranie was a fine blend, top-notch, perhaps even amazing, but really was it all the hype cracked it up to be? I mean, we're still just talking about a pipe tobacco, right?

I can only somewhat recommend Balkan Sasieni because it just doesn't stand out in a crowded field to me. It's lat-heavy, full, flavorful, and fragrant--but so are dozens of other blends, many of which are more affordable. It's made with quality ingredients, but so are dozens other blends, many of which are more affordable.

To my palate, it's too smooth, too easy-going. It lacks complexity, something to hold my interest. But it's certainly a fine smoke and YMMV. Perhaps there's something in your soul it will speak to, but as for me, I won't be replacing it when my stash runs out. Life is too short and there are just too many other blends out there I can try. Well, for now anyway...

1 person found this review helpful.

Johan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Johan (3)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

This is the one that got me into Latakia. Open the tin and you get a typical Latakia, charred, oily, sooty scent. like last nights campfire the next morning when its cold and a pile of blackened embers. But thats the magic of a well blended Latakia. Its the curtain that reveals each scene as you make your way through the bowl. From start to finish it provides floral then vanilla then coffee then herbs. A well blended latakia always performs. Easy to light, easy to smoke. This one gets even friendlier if you let it sit for a year, opened or not.

Pipe Used: one of two meerschaum reserved for latakia blends

Age When Smoked: fresh and one year+

Purchased From: http://www.pipesandcigars.com/

1 person found this review helpful.

Quaffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Quaffer (18)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Very high quality English blend. This by far has been my favorite English blend. It has all the good qualities expected with an English and none of the bad ones. Isn't mild like Frog Morton Across The Pond, but isn't as putrid as Nightcap. I find this to be somewhat like Early Morning Pipe, but with the addition of just the right amount of Latakia to make it perfect. Highly recommended.

Similar Blends: Dunhill - Early Morning Pipe.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

After a hiatus from pipe smoking for several years, I got back into it in 2006. Wanted to try Balkan Sobranie, and discovered it was no longer available. So, based on the reviews I decided to try Balkan Sasieni. I'm really don't know how close it is to the Balkan Sobranie OSM, but this has been a consistently great smoke IMHO. Rich smoky aroma, smooth, tasty, great burning quality, it is definitely worth trying if you haven't already. Strangely, for me, the pouch version I tried in 2006 seemed a little better than the current tinned version (although the current one is still great). Did the recipe change again?

Purchased From: Mars Cigars

1 person found this review helpful.

Gus Evening Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gus Evening (6)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Excellent balkan blend. Full flavor without being a nicotine bomb. Very balanced in which the Orientals interweave with the Latakia tobacco. If you like Balkan blends you should give this one a try.

Similar Blends: Balkan supreme.

1 person found this review helpful.

bob323 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bob323 (44)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Compares favorably to the old Balkan Sobranie of times gone by...I mean in the quality of the tobaccos used and the skill of the blender...If you have a taste for Balkan blends, this will not disappoint...This is not Balkan Sobranie but, it is very, very good and will improve with age.

Pipe Used: various for testing

Age When Smoked: fresh when received from Smokingpipes

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

1 person found this review helpful.

CaptnDan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CaptnDan (242)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

A beautifully balanced blend, with a tilt toward the Oriental/Turkish side. Subtly spicy, smoky and complex. A most enjoyable smoke that is always cool and dry.

I found that a wider bowl provided the necessary elbow room for this blend to really show its stuff. I prefer my regular smoke to be a bit bolder than this, but for quality and balance this stuff is right at the top of the heap.

Having sampled some Original Balkan Sobranie, and having smoked this aged Sasieni, I would say that they are close, but Sobranie still gets the nod.

1 person found this review helpful.

RCUSElder Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RCUSElder (244)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

After trying this blend for about a year, I have to say that it is average at best. I found this blend to be unbalanced and rough. It does not have the complexity of Odessey or the beautiful crescendo of flavor of Charing Cross. I have tried it in a variety of pipes with various bowl sizes but that did not seem to affect its character. If you puff a little hard, it will bite. I try this occasionally now, and it is usually because I'm out of Odessey or Charing Cross. When there is better out there why fight with this one? Revision: 03-26-2004 After acquiring a new batch of this blend, I believe the last batches I had were either moldy or just dried out. After trying the new batches, I now realize that this is an excellent blend. Not quite as rich in the orientals as say "Charing Cross", but with more Latakia. This is also very smooth, with nary a toungue-bite. I do not know if maybe the blender changed things, or maybe I did, but I now heartilly recommend this blend and have now purchased bags as well as 200g tins for the cellar (empty drawer in my office, LOL!)Rating 5 out of 5 points. Go get some now!

Update: 04-29-2011

I opened a tin I had been storing for about 5 years and this blend has mellowed quite a bit. Almost no bit, smoked very easily. But, the drawback is that is has mellowed to the point of being a "ho hum" blend. This could be an "everyday" smoke. It is a good blend, but not a "great blend". Still, better than a lot of the blends that are out there...

1 person found this review helpful.

Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

I dismissed this blend for quite a while as a pale imitation of a true classic. Besides, how good could it be if it came in a pouch? Guy Wallace of Affordable Pipes sent me a pouch, and it was an eye-opener. The blend is slightly lighter in appearance than the Sobranie, and cut in the same long, fine ribbons. The aroma is similar, but not quite as pungent, probably a different variety of Oriental (Samsoun or Smyrna rather than Yenidje). It packed well into most pipes, group 3 through 5 being best suited for me. It took flame easily, settled down to a reasonable burn rate with little attention. The blend is well balanced, with a solid Virginia base for sweetness and body, plenty of Orientals for nutty spicy taste, and an ample amount of Cyprian Latakia for that smokey flavor and lingering mouth feel. It is not quite as complex as Sobranie, but neither is it monochromatic. There are layers and nuances if smoked slowly. It also works as a complement to activities, providing the "English" experience while busy with other tasks, or while taking a brisk walk. In short, it may not be Sobranie, but it is definitely a decent tobacco blend. I can't decide whether it is a "Balkan" blend or a "Full English", but that's a technicality

1 person found this review helpful.

trevert Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
trevert (32)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

This is supposedly the original version of the above blend, repackaged and re-distributed by the family that created it. "Repackaged" is certainly the word, as the packaging of the two is almost identical. However, the tobacco inside is quite nice, and I found I preferred it to the Sobranie. The flavors are very similar, to my indelicate palate at least, but I found this one to offer that indefinable "more". The flavor was a bit fuller, the taste had a tiny bit more zest. I wouldn't go so far as to say that this is the Taurus SHO to the above comparison, but it at least has a more enticing exhaust burble. It burned smoothly to a fine ash, and while it was equally prone to bite me with that irritating Virginia snap, it offered up enough flavor to make it more worthwhile. I doubt I'll be adding this to my regular rotation any time soon, but it does at least get a better nod than the Sobranie.

1 person found this review helpful.

meanska Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
meanska (11)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Liked it, but not enough to have it take the place of my favorite English, Dunhill My Mixture 965. My main criticism is that, for me, it smokes a bit hot. Still, fans of Balkan blends should probably give this a whirl.

Pipe Used: Stanwell, Peterson

Nobody has rated this review yet.

natibo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
natibo (36)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Very Mild Extra Strong

Too weak in nicotine, too weak in flavor, and the room note will drive females away quickly. Just not my favorite blend. Don't get wrong, its not so bad that I would throw it away. I finished the tin and enjoyed it. Just not my cup of tea.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I do not want to sound nostalgic, but I had the chance to smoke the previous production, which came in a pouch. The tobacco was much darker, the cut much longer and it was lovely to smoke, truly enjoyable. This effort from Peter Stokkebye, unfortunately, is a good try but does not stand up to the previous production, sadly.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Lit a Kia Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lit a Kia (35)
★☆☆☆
Overwhelming None Detected Overwhelming Very Strong

Tin note is fine, reminded me of Pease's Abingdon, which is a good smoke. But like some others here, upon lighting, I got a mouthful of really odd and bitter tastes that were well beyond too-hot Virginias; more like a raging tire fire. I know it wasn't the pipe, as I enjoyed a bowl of Three Oaks Syrian right after emptying it. I normally give a tobacco more than once chance, but this was just too brutal.

Pipe Used: Boswell freehand

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CTS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CTS (109)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Very good blend, smooth latakia takes center stage. Packs and lights well, smokes clean to the end. Not overpowering - just right for me. Tobacco base delivers a subtle sweetness that balances out the latakia. 3+.

Pipe Used: Peterson, Italian Basket, MM

Age When Smoked: Tin date 13-JUN-2013

Purchased From: Corona Smoke Shop, Battle Creek, MI

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BigChairPuffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BigChairPuffer (11)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

A rich tobacco full of flavour. Generous amount of latakia is the highlight of this blend but leaves just enough room for the rest of the tobaccos to creep in. Easy to pack and light but it can border on bitter when smoked in large amounts. Well worth a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend seems to have some sort of humectant casing and with it a plastic/chemical taste that many of us have experienced before. With that, all other potentially positive attributes are out the window. This stuff just tastes bad and I can't recommend it.

Smoke in Peace.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BigCountryPipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BigCountryPipe (5)
★★★★
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is my number 1 Balkan mixture that I keep in my cellar. 4 stars

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CrazyWolf Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CrazyWolf (3)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

An earthy darkly fragrant aroma with a variety of different subtleties greeted my nostrils upon opening my much anticipated order of Balkan Sasieni. My Fjord # 423 pipe had arrived simultaneously. Deliberation required the utmost discipline. 7th Heaven at 1st light. Balsamic, dark earthy peppery, rich full taste & aroma nearly overwhelmed my senses. Consistent hedonistic pleasure from false light to the modicum of fine ash at the bottom of the 2" bowl. No relights & no bite, just a perfectly mild tongue spice. Not too hot, minimal draw needed. Leaves a mellow gunpowder smoky aftertaste. Richly rewarding & relaxing to smoke at a leisurely, contemplative pace. Also very important: my much better half well tolerates the 'woody' room note nicely. cupojoes.com supplied me with a very clean lb at a reasonable price, timely order processing /shipping, outstanding customer service, & even a handwritten thank you note. Highly recommend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarTuck Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarTuck (5)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

My review is from a 2005 tin which arrived somewhat on the dry side and perhaps a bit over the hill.

First third of the bowl was pleasant enough, with smokey latakia nicely balanced with an interplay of oriental influence. A low quality Virgina base was somewhat astringent and can bite if one is not careful.

Sadly, as the journey through the bowl continued the blend became more and more monochromatic. By the end the smoking experience had as much nuance as common cigarette tobacco.

Again, in all fairness my sample could have been too old and improperly stored. Regardless of age I suspect the tobaccos used in this blend are not of the highest quality.

I've been spoiled by a steady diet of G.L.Pease and McClelland quality.

Two stars as perhaps a fresh tin of this blend would be better. However, I wouldn't spend the money to find out.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Knightsmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Knightsmoker (56)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

A very good blend. It is sweet but not overly so. In fact, the sweetness comes and goes and I think it would be better if it had just a little more VA's in it. My tin was only 20 months old so another 3 yrs. might do it, the Lat. is smokey and about where a med. blend should be the Orientals come and go at various points throughout the bowl. There are better blends out there but for the price and the taste this could be a great every day smoke. I will be buying more to cellar.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

thehaggis Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thehaggis (18)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

A pleasant smoke, easy packing, lighting and all that. I like the latakia notes that hang in there throughout the bowl.Little to no bite, smooth and very full flavoured. It's a nice smoke, although if I am going the Latakia route I prefer CD Da Vinci as it is a bit more complex.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

samcoffeeman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
samcoffeeman (29)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I am a novice pipe smoker. I have tried some other balkan style blends. This one out of the tin has the signature smoky aroma, my tin seemed a bit dry. The dryness made for an easy smoke, no relights necessary. This blend was lacking body for me. I could taste the latakia in the smoke, but it disappeared on my palate. The smoke also lacked a creaminess. The palate for me was mostly pepper with a little spice and a sour background. The pepper seemed to cover up the little lat flavor this blend imparted. I would rate this on my scale from unsmokeable to super enjoyable at a less enjoyable. There are other balkans that are quite better than this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

piperookie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
piperookie (21)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Spicy smoky flavor, no bite. I am happy with one or two bowls a week and i higly recommend it to everyone.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

derlict311 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
derlict311 (67)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

After a year in a mason jar, which has been opened a few times, I can see why it has a cult following. There are some interested contrasts in this Balkan. Some say this is the best knock off of the famed Balkan Sobraine but I wouldn't have personal experience there. What it is is a pleasant tasting Balkan. Best semi-toasty.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Hazzeyd Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hazzeyd (6)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I can understand why some people don't like this, yes it has a sour taste and it smells terrible out of the tin, but what I look at this to be is a no frills English blend. I compare other English blends I smoke to this, yes a lot of them I like more, but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate this.

I find it to be an easy, cool, flavorful smoke. It packs easy and has never bit me.

If you have been just smoking aromatics or perhaps don't have the palate developed for the pungent flavors in here you're in for a bit of a shock. But it you enjoy this sort of thing at 6 bucks for a tin its hard to go wrong.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tleek Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tleek (51)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

UPDATE Im boosting it up to four stars. Its really grown on me. I liked it ever since the first bowl, but with a little airing out and perhaps a little time, i have grown to love this blend. Smokes cool, has a very nice taste, mainly latakia, mixed with a good amount of oriental muskiness, and a little virginia sweetness. Fantastic smoke!!

This is a delicious blend. the perfect mix of latakia and orientals. Perfect late afternoon/night time smoke for me, especially now in fall time when its a little colder.

The most prominent taste i would have to say is latakia, with orientals a close second. The virginias do provide a pleasently sweet background flavor which becomes more noticeable if the pipe is beginning to go out. This is a fantastic blend that isnt too strong, could possibly be an all day smoke if i ever wanted one,

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Arkie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arkie (106)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

This is a great English blend and I can't imagine anyone not liking it. However I'm not sure if it is quite as good as Presbyterian or Margate. It doesn't have that subtle nuance that some smokers describe as "creamyness".

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SMOKETSES Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SMOKETSES (208)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I had opened a tin on February 2008, and opened the second one on May 2009. So, I will write for this second trial of this blend. It contains Latakia, Virginia and Oriental, and it hasn't lost any of its moisture and quality. A classic light English, with no character, however. It doesn't have something extra in its taste in order to make you passionate. It has no tongue bite what so ever, OK, it does not provide that additional pleasure you seek in special moments. I consider it an all day smoke, but just that. Virginia and Oriental clearly prevail, while Latakia is almost imperceptible.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

vespa Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
vespa (12)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This has been my GO-TO blend for well over 10yrs now and I really enjoy this blend. My first intro to english blends was Dunhill ( London Mixture ) which I still smoke and find just as enjoyable even though " Murry " isnt the blender. As said by many in these reviews you always remember your first, and I've stuck with it. Hell I have 10 tins tucked away for the future. Now to get back to Balkan Sasieni, I was at my local tobac shop early this afternoon and sat down with a pipe of this fine blend. I dont find BS as sweet as some seem to find it, the sweetness does peak thru once and a while but I just find that it is a smoky, spicy and creamy smoke, and at under 8 bucks a tin you could do a whole lot worse for a whole lot more. I've smoked this blend in all sorts of environs, hot, cold, rain, snow and some humid days when I thought why in the hell am I even smoking? ( But we all know the answer to that ). I'm not a fancy reviewer I dont review a tobacco by how many condiments I can try and name to describe a blend. I just try to let folks know if a blend is worth a try and YES THIS IS.

Your Brother in Smoke

3/4 Stars

Nobody has rated this review yet.

asmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
asmoke (4)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

Overall I enjoy this quite a bit. It might make it into my regular rotation. I don't think I would recommend this as a english into... looks like some have had a rough go of it. That's understandable. I'd look into one of the Frog Mortons to ease into english stuff.

I was just smoking this outside in the damp afternoon air. It's great. The initial light and tamp yield a sweetness that fades within a couple minutes. Quite a bit of smoke volume. Easy to keep lit. Tin moisture level is perfect for smoking right away. This could be a bit of a beast if smoked indoors (not going to please the wife).

Latakia is pretty forward, the virginias and orientals provide some boundaries and sweetness that make this very enjoyable for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ecce_ego Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ecce_ego (12)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Strong

Edit: Well, I still had the tin, so I decided yesterday to try another bowl of this stuff. It seems to have calmed down a lot after being shelved for all those months. Much less of a sour taste- it's more mellow now. Still has a moldy, musty taste that I still do not enjoy, but it is much less pronounced. Still stinks the same. So I will add another star to this for improving with age, but I still don't think it's something I will get used to. I can imagine that I might enjoy a blend with just a hint, and I mean a cunt hair, of latakia, so I might try this for blending.

This is the first non-aromatic I've smoked, and I must say it was a rather unpleasant introduction to the English style. The scent and taste of what I can only assume is the Latakia, is incredibly powerful and pungent to the aromatically inclined. I lit up a bowl of this at a smoking area on campus and drove everyone away, with many a mumbled 'that stinks' growled in parting. Most of those same cigarette smokers love the smell of an aromatic, but I agree with them that this tobacco just smells horribly rancid and musty, and tastes the same. I don't know how anyone can truly enjoy this unless it's what they grew up with (i.e. an actual Englishman), and I'm relatively sure it is merely affectation when many reviewers claim to love it. I grew up smelling sweet, aromatic smoke from grandfather's pipe; that's what I like and that's what I'll stick to from now on.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

atomicbuster Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
atomicbuster (28)
★☆☆☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Strong

I've only been smoking a pipe for 3 years. This blend was my introduction to non-aromatics. I was surprised so many people said this is mild. When I opened the tin the smell was very strong. To me it smelled like old flowers; not really bad, but not good either. I smoked it and it just tasted like something musty and stale. I let it dry for a few days, but it didn't help much. I smoked about half the tin, using different pipes, "giving it a chance" before I just couldn't take it anymore. I threw the rest of the tin in the garbage. I can't recommend it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

GSTQ Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
GSTQ (31)
★☆☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

Appearance is a mixture of light and dark brown ribbons. Tin smells lightly of smoke, iodine, and musty room. Tastes bitter and sour.

One need not wonder why it is so inexpensive. This is one of the worst non-aromatics I have ever smoked. Biting, bitter, and just unpleasant.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Oldguy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Oldguy (7)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

There are two criteria for enjoying this tobacco. First, approach it with an open mind. it's not Balkan Sobranie, so get over it. Second, try it in several pipes until you find the ones that make it resonate. It just smokes vastly better in some pipes than in others, and seems to be especially good in meerschaums. But when you do find the right pipe, it will yield a delightfully balanced, authentic light Balkan experience. Its light flavor has a definite advantage in hot weather. I just came in from enjoying a long bowlful on my front porch where it is presently 95 degrees on the shady side of my house. It was never overpowering, never bit, and smoked right down to the bottom on one light. A perfect summertime smoke, although I'm not sure how satisfying it would be in the colder months. Fortunately we have a huge selection of stronger-flavored Balkan-style blends available for those days. A much better light Balkan would be Pease's Kensington, but still Balkan Sasieni is a blend I'll be cellaring away for the coming summers. UPDATE: Last year I bought two tins. I finished off the first this June and opened the second. My recommendation: DO NOT bother trying to age this stuff; it just makes it worse, even more bland if that's possible. I had to throw out the aged tin. Smoke it fresh or - better yet - not at all.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Capt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Capt (120)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is my go to Balkan blend when I want something a little bit lighter.

This blend isn't complex as some, but it burns great, and requires little attention. I have at least a dozen tins of this in the cellar, ya never know when this one may be discontinued too.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

neoclassical Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
neoclassical (9)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Va, lat, and orientals smooth and sweet, with a spice to it. I never tried the original, but would like to see what the "good old days" of this blend were like. It did bite me a bit.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Patrick ValBlanc Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Patrick ValBlanc (6)
★★☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Perhaps I missmoked this, and perhaps I simply had too much expectations towards this tobacco. It packs and burns like a charm, I'll give it that, an easy smoke requiring little attention. That being said I found it to be dominated mostly by a very musty taste and little more. It's not a bad tobacco, I just found it lacked depth and complexity. Overall, I'd say it's a straightforward tobacco that's fine if you're going to smoke it absentmindedly or while concentrating on something else, but hardly a vintage blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

thomasanswered Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thomasanswered (11)
★☆☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

Preferring power in the pipe, and generally going for latakia in order to satisfy the requirement, I was recommended a tin of this by a tobacconist. Naturally, I was disappointed with its mildness, despite its inclusion of latakia.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (218)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I nice tobacco at a good price. It is an all day tobacco that requires very little attention, burns really well without constant tamping or relights. Has a nice amount of Latakia with some Balkan support and maybe a slight touch of vanilla. Doesn't bite, but is a little harsh around the edges, pleasant aroma but not too complex, slow sip to get the most out of this , I'll keep this around because of the price. Better that PS Balkan Supreme or Frog Mortan. Has a slight bitter aftertaste as you get to the last 1/3 of the bowl.

solid 2 1/2 stars; 1 for better that a drug store brand, 1 for ease of smoking, 1/2 for price. Going fishing... take this, weeding the garden... smoke this, running to the store... take this, sitting on the back porch relaxing... smoke something more complex!

Updated 6/13/12- I've had an opened and resealed tin cellared for about a year and I just tried it again. Very tasty, smoother than I remembered. Still a slight bitter aftertaste, trace of vanilla gone . 3 stars

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tripjoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tripjoker (64)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend gets alot of grief from folks that I beleive is less than deserved. While it is not a "luxury" blend, it is solid. The flavors are spot on as far as a balkan goes and there is just enough strength to keep you interested.

Packing is made a breeze with the fine ribbon cut. My only criticism is that it is a bit moist out of the tin. No harm there though, a bit of air time and that is quickly solved. The burn is very good. No bite.

Stokkebye is to blame for some of the undue criticism as far as I'm concerned. Although a reasonably good tobacco house, they are surely not in the top end of the business as they specialize in bulk offerings at a low price. That being the case, a tin of Sasieni is not the same as Supreme. I can assure you of that. Anyone with any taste buds left can tell the difference.

A good balkan style blend on the light side of medium in strength. I can find much better and surely can find much, much worse blends. 3 stars without reservation. Cheers!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DeadMensPipes Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DeadMensPipes (38)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

The initial bowlful was unremarkable. I will put it up on the shelf and return in a few months to see if it improves with age.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

antipodesman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
antipodesman (2)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

Reading the reviews I decided to try Balkan Supreme and Balkan Sasieni back to back. I had Balkan Supreme the first day and next day I had Balkan Sasieni. They are quite different. Sasieni is mild and not too complex but it has a great leathery vanilla room note that is missing in Balkan Supreme. This is definitely a favorite.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

quantumboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
quantumboy (119)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Whether this is actually PS Balkan Supreme in a can I don't know but it is quite similar. An excellent MOTR English blend with lots of flavor and great manners in the briar. The components are all noticeable, and the balance and blending are just right. A favorite for sure.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

skwesch@hotmail.com Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
skwesch@hotmail.com (1)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

What can I say about this Balkan? Well I have read everyone comparing this the Sobranie Balkan of past. It has some of the character of the sobranie but thats about it. I think it is a very good balkan mild with a subtle sweetness towards the mid point of the bowl.A very good mild smoke and no bite . I would recommend this to anyone who would enjoy a good mild balkan. I am smoking it out of a Sherwood Savinelli pipe . I got a tin for christmas and will be adding this to my rotation. I think it would get better if aged for a year or more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

wintermute Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wintermute (35)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

When I bought this I was told that it was basically Balkan Supreme in a tin. Both tobaccos are good Balkans and both are made by Stokkebye, but that is where the similarity ends. Balkan Sasieni is milder and less complex. There is more spice at the back of the throat, but there is not the myriad of flavors that come through as in Balkan Supreme. The cut is also a little shorter, in my opinion, and there is less drying needed with Sasieni. This tobacco is great for a quality every-day English. The Orientals don't seem to play as big a role, but do add a little something to the blend. Grab your favorite briar and the tin and go! When it is time to smoke, a good bowl is there to be had. When you want to sit and ponder the complexities of the world and Balkan tobacco in your favorite chair, go for the Balkan Supreme. The nicotine level is moderate, but not too much. The spice lasts for the first third of the bowl and bows out only to return for the last fifth. The aroma is what you'd expect from a blend with Latakia and the lighting characteristics are good. The ash is grey and dry and falls from the pipe easily. You see, all of the above characteristics lend to this being a good every-day smoke. There are better Balkan offerings out there, but I do plan to keep this one around when I want a quality, no nonsense, darn good smoke. I have paid a lot more for tins that I have hated and thrown away. I think every pipe smoker should get and finish a tin sometime in their pipe smoking career.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (192)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

As I am not a big fan of Latakia, I approached this not expecting to like it very much. I was pleasantly surprised how wrong I was. This is a very nicely balanced mixture and the Latakia was not only tolerable, but enjoyable. The Oriental leaf combined very nicely with the Latakia. It produced a cool smoke (usually Latakia gives me tongue bite) and the room note was excellent. The remnant of the smoke lingered in my beard and mustache and I woke up to its very pleasant bouquet. I will order a few tins to keep stocked for when the muse strikes!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

azguy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
azguy (18)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

Having had the wonderful experience of smoking the original from the late 60s until it's greatly mourned demise, I approached this review very carefully. So much so that I have sampled the blend in a variety of pipes over a prolonged period of time(2yr). The tin/pack note is similar to the original. The first puffs are thick and familiar. At this point in the smoke a sour astringency pops up. I had hoped this to be the fault of one pack, but is has proved to be consistent. The sweetness of the Latakia is greater than in the original and I personally appreciate it. Unfortunately the sweetness slowley disappears and is replaced by a mildly bitter taste; a sort of "spoiled oriental" if there is such a term. This latter note has been consistent in several different packs. I really wanted to like this as it had been described to me as the closest to the original by several trusted friends. Alas I found them to be wrong, although I do plan to give this one final trial in the summer. July. Unfortunately no change in the above review except for a greater astringency. Too bad; either my memory is fading (along with other anatomical parts), or Stokkeybe's is . I pray it is the latter.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PipeCat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipeCat (13)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Strong Full Tolerable

I cannot recommend this blend. For all the great reviews I have heard, I thought I had found the holy grail of Balkan blends. I find this very upsetting because the blend packs and burns so well.

In a word, the blend tastes 'artificial'. The topping used by Stokkebye taste so apparent and terrible, I am completely surprised that it has gained such a favorable following. This goes for the other blends I have had from this blender as well.

Smoking this blend has really helped me appreciate the fine tobaccos available to us.

The price should be an indicator of the quality of ingredients this blend is made from.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

manytrees Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
manytrees (16)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Thanks for the recommendation to avoid this blend Mr Toney. I however placed this fantastic mixture right up their with my top 3. The flavors are so clear and enjoyable and are completely identifiable . Don't expect to find a better smoke unless it comes from G L Pease of Gawith, If it were possible I'd give this one 5 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

M.Toney Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
M.Toney (53)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Tolerable to Strong

Sampled from a fresh tin, aired out and dried a little. Tin aroma...Typical Balkan smell...Latakia & Orientals. Aroma reminds one of the Balkan Sobranie Original Mixture but that's where the similarity ends. I'm using The Balkan Sobranie Original Mixture for comparison purposes since it is unquestionably the hallmark of Balkan blends.

This stuff has a good burn rate. After a light & relight to let my pipe cool, I'm getting a slightly bitter taste. With Balkan Sobranie, I got an abundance of sweet, creamy smoke from each draw after the first few puffs. This blend was also a little stingy with the nicotine. The Balkan Sobranie OM was perfect in strength for any smoker...medium to strong. This is wimpy!

The tobaccos in this mix never seemed to develop into the tasty melange of flavors produced by the Balkan Sobranie OM. I toked until there was nothing but ashes left & I failed to get that depth of tasty flavors from the aforementioned king of Balkans.

Toward the end of the bowl, I was beginning to get a minute amount of the sweet taste & flavors with only a slight semblance of the BSOM. It was fleeting, however and only lasted a short while. I found this to remain a little more bitter than sweet & it took too long for any flavor to develop.

This blend did not propel me to immediately reach for a second bowl like the BSOM did. I found it rather bland near the end, whereas BSOM flavor remained to the end & kept me coming back for more of that elusive, palatable flavor that I deemed exceptional. I also preferred PS Balkan Supreme over this mixture. It had more flavor & sweetness nearing mid bowl.

This doesn't make my top thirty and doubtful that I'll ever smoke much of it. I will however, keep searching for that Balkan Sobranie flavor in a blend or start blending my own. I will air this tin for another week and opine further if any change in character is noteworthy. Therefore, IMHO, I feel that Balkan Sasieni only merits two stars. Sampled in a size two Dunhill.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

scorpio2billion Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
scorpio2billion (9)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I think we should be hesitant to sing the praises of this little tin too loudly, lest the manufacturers come to their senses and double the price. Cry all you want about the Balkans of yesteryear- I'll be just fine with a supply of this subtle and satisfying blend. Everyone seems to complain that it isn't Balkan Sobranie. Maybe that's because it isn't Balkan Sobranie. That's like complaining that Squadron Leader isn't a popsicle. Everything here is harmonious. It's mild and cool, yet full of flavor. Some may pine away for some mixture that they can't even remember the taste of but, for my money, there are legendary blends floating around to satisfy just about anyones tastes. I used to ride a tricycle, too- but I don't miss it. My Weebles are a different story...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Sorringowl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sorringowl (8)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This has become my favorite blend. I was not a big Lat fan before trying this--most of the blends I had tried with Latakia in them seemed too harsh and lacking in flavor--and the only reason I tried this was on the recommendation of a friend in a pipe club I'm a member of. But with this blend--from the opening of the tin to the bottom of the bowl--it's a smoke to be thoroughly enjoyed.

Upon opening the tin, it's easy to see (and smell) that what's contained is nothing but great quality tobac. Nice ribbon cut strands with just the right amount of moisture, I usually smoke this right out of the can with no drying needed (and I usually like my tobacs on the dry side). From the first light to the bottom, this is the coolest smoke I've ever tried. The quality and temperature of the smoke itself feels like cool air over the mountains.

There's plenty of flavor here as well, from the sweet Virginias to the rich Macedonian Orientals, and you'll want to savor this smoke to taste everything it has to offer. This is not a smoke, however, that you have to babysit (say, like Ten Russians), just a very good, very cool, tasty all day smoke with a little bit of something extra that makes you want to smoke it just enough that you don't take what is has to offer for granted. I have, however, smoked this mindlessly, while tinkering in my shop and enjoyed it just as much.

It lights easily and stays lit pretty well. No bite on this at all and there have been times when I've pushed it just to see. Again, it keeps its cool under pressure unlike any other tobacco I have tried.

As far as room note goes, there's just the right balance between Virginas, Latakia and Orientals in here to make this still seem pleasant. My girlfriend (who doesn't normally like the smell of Latakia) has asked me (on more than one occasion while smoking this), "What is that? (as in, what blend are you smoking now?) When I tell her it's Balkan Sasieni (again) she usually says, "Oh, that's not bad. I kind of like that." Which tells me two things: 1. Every time she smells it, she gets a different room note (which correlates to the feeling I have when I smoke it--every time I smoke it, I pick up on new things in the blend), and, 2. The room note changes to the extent that I savor this smoke--the more carelessly I huff, the stronger, more Latakia-ey it smells, and the more I savor this, the more those flavors come through (in both the smoke and the room note). I know this could probably be said with most blends but none so truer than with this blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

incoinnu Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
incoinnu (6)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A very smooth tobacco. I found it very pleasant to the bottom of the bowl. Highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jazzmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jazzmoke (57)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

It is a must, and that says it all. Balanced and tasty and interesting, there is nothing more to want from it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NursDad Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NursDad (9)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I find this to be a very satisfying blend. To me it has a great taste alternating between spicy and sweet. Much more enjoyble when smoked slowly. Will continue to enjoy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ewlewis Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ewlewis (7)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is truly a tobacco in the spirit of what I have come to know as Balkan. The orientals are blended with the VA in the front with Latakia playing in the back. To the experienced Balkan smoker I would say you will be pleased. Similar to Presbyterian, though I believe the Latakia is heavier in Sasieni. The true beauty of this, as well as many other Balkan's that I have smoked, is that you can smoke it slow and pick out the melded flavors, or you can smoke quicker and still enjoy with less complexity.

Lastly, at only $6 something a tin you cannot beat the price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Brightnessmonster Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Brightnessmonster (2)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

I'm too new to the world of pipe tobacco to accurately describe what this tastes like, if you know something better feel free to brightnessmonster@gmail.com it to me.. there is absolutely no reason in the world not to try this stuff if you can get a hold of it. No bite, or foul tastes at all. The smoke is mildly one dimensional I'll admit but this stuff is EXCELLENT, a real treat. I got a world of flavor with my balkan tin and ill definitely be buying more.. not to discredit or change this guys opinion but the RYO tobacco in a tin statement I see below should be taken very lightly, I feel as though he may be only referring to texture in the first place. this is awesome flavorful PIPE baccy.. enjoy

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Fellow traveler Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fellow traveler (64)
★★☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

I cannot state it better than A. Morley Jaques in 2007 or Lustra from 2002.

Summary: An ordinary one dimensional smoke with a tendency to bite and turn bitter, high and strident with no bottom notes.

Lustra tried to improve it with a blend of MacBaren Scottish Mixture (horrible by the way). Others have tried Captain Black. I tried adding Prince Albert Choice Blend (quite good actually).

But why bother. Balkan Sasieni seems more of a RYO menthol cigarette blend in a can than a pipe tobacco.

If you need something equivalent to a piano with no keys to the left of middle C give it a try. I will not buy it again. But the presentation is perfect, tin aroma is excellent and I will reuse the tin.

Want the same flavor profile with high end tobacco? Try Davidoff Royalty, smooth, sweet and very satisfying, 100% better.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Charlie Allnut Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Charlie Allnut (16)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Strong

Listen to me - I'm giving it to you straight. I got plans see, and there's no room in them for you. You couldn't never mean nothing to me - nothing special that is. You know what I mean.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hawky454 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hawky454 (30)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant

No surprises here, just an excellent Balkan mixture. perfectly balanced. Great comments on the room note as well. If the tin is a little too expensive for your taste, (it's $19.99 a tin @ my B&M) try Proper English in the bulk department (made by Stokkebye as well.) In my opinion it's every bit as good. Actually in a blind taste test I doubt I could tell the two apart. Essential

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Country Doc Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Country Doc (20)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I will put my bias up front - this is my staple tobacco.

I had the great pleasure of smoking Sobranie (and still have a little bit that I guard carefully) - Sasieni is not Sobranie. Not the same thing at all. It lacks the full-on flavor and peculiar, delightful deep bass note that Sobranie has; they are different tobaccos.

To my taste, Sasienie is tangy at the top of the smoke, evolving into a mellow, creamy sweetness in the second half of the bowl, with latakia present throught. Unique and simply lovely, if you have the taste for it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Peppino Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Peppino (74)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Funny how everyone tastes are different. For me this blend gets better half way through the bowl. The flavor gets fuller until sadly it comes to an end in a white ash in every style of pipe! Much better than the pouch version in the 90's in fact not even close.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tee-dub Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tee-dub (48)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Strong

I'd like to echo Marshall Law's observations. I wish I had said them.

It is tasty, and it is interesting.

This mixture is particularly sensitive to temperature, it seems to me. Smoked ccol its flavors are too subdued for what I'd expect of a Balkan; once warmed, it provides a blast of something like salty licorice in a pipe bowl.

Once warmed and running, this is a pitched battle between the Orientals, which are spicy and pungent, and the Latakia. These flavors are often, but not always, experienced harmoniously.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

krg1000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
krg1000 (133)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Finally got some of this blend that I have been wanting to try for quite some time now. I agree with all the other fine reviewers here and say that this is a well crafted blend. PS has really outdone themselves with this blend here. I agree with another reviewer here that Balkan Sasieni reminds me of Frog Morton in some ways, but better. I find this to be in the medium level of nicotine and taste overall. The wife did not complain about it when she was out with me while I was smoking this. So I will give this a pleasant to tolerable setting there on room note. This burns down to a nice fine ash at the bottom of the bowl and produces a good amount of smoke. It also seems to light well and stay lit with no relights for me, just some very occasional tamping. The presentation in the tin is great and the tin smell, for me, in wonderful. The moisture level is right on the mark when popping open the tin. I definitely see me getting more of this to cellar and enjoy over the course of time. I would definitely recommend this blend to all. It may be an acquired taste for the new smokers who are used to aromatics. At this price level, you are paying this much or more for a tin of most aros on the market, so I think it is more than worth it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Marshall Law Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Marshall Law (50)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

This is a very pleasant medium-to-mild Balkan with a significant amount of oriental leaf. While I do feel it to be a high-quality smoke with good flavor and burn characteristics, I agree with the observations of Mr. Servo, below, however, that the overall smoking experience is flawed in the sense that it is a bit too disjointed. Every time I foray into the territory of the Saseini in search of blissful harmony, it starts out slighty rounded, smooth, smokey and savory, with a light dose of well-balanced latakia...yet mid-bowl the latakia begins to sign off too substantially and abruptly, leaving what seems to be an excess of almost lemony, quite tasty virginias to run amock, which endure as the controlling faction for some time, punctuated by stronger and stronger hits of nutty, floral oriental leaf, but not in the sense of a balanced, spicy, brooding balkan. Then, in the bottom third of the bowl, the orientals begin to dominate too significantly, virginia then vaults, and lady latakia leaves the battlefield altogether, causing you to wonder exactly what sort of blend you've just smoked for the entire latter half of the session. It is highly possible that this blend may benefit significantly from some serious cellaring time to pull its standoff-ish participants into a flavorful truce, but as it stands I have not yet found the correct pipe to pull this young, mild mixture together. It is clear that this blend prefers to be smoked quite slowly to keep the orientals calm, and seems to benefit from a smaller-bore chamber. Still, in all, a tasty and noteworthy smoke. Half-star deduction for the disjointed finish, so for now, Two and three quarter stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cwnet Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cwnet (3)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Medium to Full Tolerable

It‘s my first tobacco.Latakia is very suitable in this mix.But I feel the strength is not strong enough to me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kashmir Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kashmir (19)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Balkan Sasieni provides for a very rich and rewarding smoke. The Latakia is strong and present. With the sweet Virginia leaf this would remind me of Frog Morton, but the orientals make it quite different. Sort of an exotic Frog Morton. The Latakia produces a deep sonorous smoke, and "really hits the spot". Although the sweet Virginia and spicy Oriental components take a back seat to the Latakia, their presence is also felt and they blend it just right.

I would highly recommend this blend to any lover of Latakia, or to those who wish for a more spicy version of the "frog". Although I never tasted the original Balkan Sasieni or the famous Balkan Sobranie, I have been told by others that this current blend by Peter Stokkeby Tabaksfabrik approximates it to a certain degree. Again, a highly recommended blend and one that I will be sure to stock up upon.

After going through four tins of this blend, I decided to buy the 16oz. bulk from Cup O Joes. I don't know if its an in-house blend from Cup O Joes, or whether it is from the original blend by Peter Stokkebye Tobaksfabrik A/S. However, I found that this blend, although it approximates the original blend, is missing something. Perhaps the freshness of Latakia? Or less of it?

So I decided to do something I have never done. Why not add Captain Black (White) to the Balkan Sasieni, at a 1:1 ratio. An "aromatic balkan" if you will. Although not an aromatic smoker (I prefer English and Balkan blends almost exclusively, with a little take of Pressed Aged Virginias from McClellen or sometimes Escudo in a group 2 Dunhill), I have always had a soft spot for ol' Capn' Black (White) from my early days. Well, I must say that I really like this new "aromatic Balkan" that I created and would recommend it to anyone, who wants the sweetness of Capn' Black (White) but also appreciates the depth of the Virginia and Orientals in Balkan Sasieni. In short, the latter replaces the bland Cavendish and Burleys background of Capn' Black.

So to conclude, I really like Balkan Sasieni, in both the tin and bulk versions (although the latter approximate the tin version and does not reach it completely). Balkan Sasieni is a spicey, Latakia-rich Balkan Blend, and I highly recommend it. Four out of four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Claudius Stradivarius Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Claudius Stradivarius (171)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is an excellent blend. Slighty different than the pouches I smoked in the 90's in that the tobacco cut seems shorter.

Typical Balkan aroma. Delicious alternance between sweet and spicey, this tobacco has a fabulous taste. Some tins, very rarely, will display a bit of a peppery taste sometimes. But overall, it is consistent and a steal for the price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

KahveDelisi Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
KahveDelisi (45)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

it's like someone found good quality latakia for cheap. lots of latakia here, and some spicy orientals (though tastes exactly like Turkish to me) which is enough to leave a pleasant tingling on your tongue.. BUT, where's virgina? Either there's little amount of virginia there, or it's very high quality(?) virginia tobacco which is impossible to detect. Whatever it is, I love this one (and that's probably because I don't compare it to anything and evaluate it on its own)

Just one downside; too wet out of tin. Needs couple hours (or more) drying out.

Btw did I say lots of latakia?

Yeah.. lots of latakia ;)

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gj Michelob Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gj Michelob (4)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

So many times I had tried to give up the vile cigarettes for the more noble pipe. I always failed, leaving behind a well balanced and poorly smoked collection of beautiful pipes and hundreds of wasted tins of the widest assortment of tobaccos.

A month ago, however, I picked up a tin of Balkan Sasieni and since can no longer inflict myself the injury of the tasteless cigarettes smoke. I am in love with this blend.

It is perfect, creamy and fragrant, leaving as captivating an aftertaste as it is intriguing throughout each bowl which I smoke down to a thin powder of whitish ash.

This tobacco is easy to appreciate and to smoke, which I can recommend for the novice, as I am. It burns well and smokes consistently, its delicate taste and scent remaining nearly unaltered until the end.

I alternate it with an artificially flavored tobacco (improperly but commonly referred to as "aromatic"), Blue Note, which I will review separately, but which also I find outstanding in its category.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tom Servo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tom Servo (58)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

A good example of the flavor & aroma of the Balkan style. Maybe not the best example, but not exactly middle-of-the-road either. The tin aroma is rich latakia, maybe a bit subdued, but very nicely balanced with the floral Orientals. However, in the pipe it starts out very nice - tasty, smoky and spicy, rich and smooth. But the flavors start getting confused in the last half of the bowl, and it starts to bite a bit. Plenty of Latakia, balanced nicely. But the whole thing seems to fizzle short of Cloud 9 for me. Very good, but not brilliant. Better and bolder Balkans are out there, if you like the style of this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Archangel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Archangel (22)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I never had the privilige of tasting the original Balkan Sobranie so I am not able to contribute to the ongoing debate and compare the two in this review.

What I know is this is a very rich, tasty, smooth but rather light in nicotine content mixture that seems to be consistent from one tin to the other. Overall the Latakia, despite being in a very fair proportion, does not impede on the taste of the orientals or VA. They complete each other very well which is a sign of a fine balance for me.

The tin aroma is definitively Latakia. It's everywhere! The pipeful delivers smoky, spicy and sweetness in alternance, making this a very enjoyable smoke.

Highly recommended for someone who wants to venture in middle of the road, heavier English mixtures but do not want to end up on their butts by an OD of nicotine/Latakia taste.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mike__P Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mike__P (87)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Balkan Sasieni is a solid, middle-of-the-road English/Balkan blend that is fairly balanced, smokes dry and contains no noticeable toppings/casings. Plus, it's a real bargain. Unfortunately, it lacks complexity, and competes in an increasingly crowded category with many noteworthy blends, such as Squadron Leader, Standard Mixture, Legends and many others from boutique houses that provide both more depth of flavor and a (relatively) unique twist on the old formula of Virginia + Oriental + Latakia. It is somewhat worth a try, but don't sweat it if you decide to pass. You ain't missin' much.

Ho-hum.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

htduck Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
htduck (23)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Please keep in mind I like Orientals the best and I never had the chance to smoke Balkan Sobranie - that said this is a good smoke. My tin was a little moist (what a classy package) and took several lights but still a good clean burn with no bite. Good mouth feel, smooth and mellow. I had never tried Sasieni because I couldn't find it in a local shop and when ordering over the internet I usually spent my mad money on other must have blends. Additionally, as others have noted, the reviews are sort of mixed. I think this tobacco blend has been a bit disadvantaged because of all the comparisons to Sobranie. IMHO if they ever stop making this blend 20 years later smokers will remember this blend fondly as they now do Sobranie. Multiple tins of Balkan Sasieni will join Squadron Leader, Classic Samsun, Tashkent and Spilman Mixture in my tobacco closet to age and improve to enhance my puffing pleasures as the years go by.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarBurner Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarBurner (29)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Smoking from a 2006 tin of the imported Stokkebye blend. This is a mild Oriental/Latakia blend that despite its tameness delivers a well balanced smoke that is rich & satisfying. Packs well and has no bite.If you like a strong latakia presence, skip this one.Stokkebye surely is a Master Blender IMHO.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Chatsworth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Chatsworth (52)
★★★★
Mild Mild Medium Pleasant

The tin aroma was very nice, and was almost entirely latakia. The orientals pop up until after a few puffs. The room note was perfectly agreeable. A bit of nicotine hit at the end. Aired out the tin for 45 minutes and it smoked dry, no gurgles. Barely left any trace on the bowl. I have nothing negative to say about it. It works for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (121)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable to Strong

Not my cup of tea. Flat taste, ordinary quality. It smells better unlit in the tin than it tastes smoked in a pipe. I mixed the tin with Commonwealth mixture and some Black Cavendish for a decent Latakia mixture.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dietl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dietl (8)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I looked over this blend for years as I had the impression from some of the reviews here that this was just a poor imitation Balkan Sobranie. I wish that I hadn't avoided it. I'll start off by saying that I'm an English blend fan who usually smokes Squadron Leader, Penzance, SG Skiff and occasionally Frog Morten when I want something really light. I also enjoy some of the Virginias such as Blackwoods Flake for a change of pace.

While in a local B&M, I wanted to provide a sale, so bought a can that he had collecting dust on the shelf. I found this to be a very satisfying tobacco for my tastes. It has a nice medium flavor without the peppery flavor of the Skiff and burns very, very cleanly. I took my pipe and the can of Sasieni on a motorcycle ride yesterday and had a nice smoke on the side of a local river. I only had to relight once and found that it burned to a nice clean white ash. The flavor was delightful all the way to the bottom of the bowl, which I can't say for some other English tobaccos that I smoke. I can highly recommend this to anyone looking for a regular English.

I never smoked Balkan Sobranie, so I don't have its ghost lurking in my memory. In some respects I guess I'm glad that I don't as I can enjoy blends like this without comparing it to a legend. In my book this one is a fine tobacco blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ItarPeyo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ItarPeyo (19)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Strong

Very good english/balkan blend. It may lack some finesse, but for the price it deserves 4 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tom Bombadill Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tom Bombadill (83)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

This is one of the best English blends I've had the pleasure to smoke. In a word, the mix is just really smooth. The latakia is tasty and pronounced throughout the entire bowl, but not overpowering. Very nice smooth undertone of the Orientals right to the end. The latakias and orientals stay balanced for the whole smoke. This is not one of those strong-latakia mixes. It's relaxing and mellow. Similar to Old Dublin and several fine balkans I've enjoyed from tobacco shops.

Four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CaptainEnormous Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CaptainEnormous (17)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

This blend is priced somewhere in between the premium brands (GLP, Solani, etc) and the bulk imitations. And it tastes like it.

This is a fine tobacco, heavy on the Latakia but nuanced and interesting. I'm a fan, particularly in the second half of the smoke when things meld a bit. At first it's just Latakia and some vague Oriental in there to temper. . .but later the Virginia sweetness develops wonderfully. Still, there's flavor here that's slightly off. Something murky and a little soapy. Perhaps a product of less expensive ingredients?

As earlier reviews note: This is cut finely, packs well, burns cool down to fine, white ash. And those characteristics are really what commend this blend. To me this is an English/Balkan/Oriental standard. It's a pleasure to smoke and is certainly one I'll turn to now and again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rodrigo de Xerez Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rodrigo de Xerez (16)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

Well, Balkan Sasieni is a tobacco I do like. It has a solid and sweet Virginia base, good spicy Orientals and, of course, very noticeable Cyprian Latakia –smokey and leathery-. In some big bowls it can be a little bit harsh at the end, but nothing especially aggresive.

I've read it is produced by same producer as Paul Olsen MOB Balkan (P.Stokkebye, in Denmark), and some think it is the same mixture, but I find this one richer, fuller, more creamy and less artificial.

Perhaps it is in the borderline between a Balkan and an English Mixture. I just think it can be recommended for those in search of a good mix of Latakia, Virginia and Orientals. And at a very reasonable price.

RdX score (tasted in 10 different pipes): 90.10

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rustica Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rustica (16)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I have never smoked the Balkan Sobranie which seems to be adored by those who have smoked it. However, I love a good English or Balkan blend and was somewhat unenthused by this smoke. Too its credit, it smokes perfectly, clearly possesses high quality leaves, and is perfectly balanced almost too a fault. The orientals seem to dominate more in sweetness than spice and the latakia does poke its head out enough to keep one interested. What was missing was the full character of virginia leaves needed to round out a blend of this genre. Coming in a somewhat dry ribbon cut, this blend is easy too pack and tends to be better packed on the tighter/fuller side. Does better in smaller rather than larger pipes. The flavors detected range from salt and pepper to buttery sweet with the smoky campfire quality of latakia coming out mostly in the room note than taste. Can't give it three stars as I was quick to lose interest about halfway through the tin. Recommended for those seeking a VERY mild english or introduction to Balkans.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr.Dark Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr.Dark (9)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Unfortunately I've never had sobranie, so I cant make a comparison between the two (which seems to be the vogue thing to do). That aside, it seems (after just one tin) to be a fairly well balanced Balkan, with just a bit to much Latakia for my personal taste. Otherwise, no bite and no overt unpleasantness.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr. Scott Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr. Scott (82)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Extra Strong

This blend turned me off Latakias, almost forever. After this junk, I ran away from the smoky stuff for a year. And the "orientals" give it a flowery (not in a good way) taste. Even had I liked this blend, my wife would have forbidden it due to the horrible odor. Honestly, even if you love orientals and Latakia, the room note of BS is just foul.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I prefer Englishes and Balkans when they are aged, so my tin should last a while. That said, it seems to me to be a fine example of the style, and is reasonably priced. It bites my mouth more than some blends, but that is probably just an issue of personal "chemistry." It is a bit boring when compared to Dunhill London Mixture or Durbar (new versions), or to some Ebay-aquired aged English tins such as Four Monks and Black Knight (both by Lane).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (569)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The mind is known to play tricks, even when you work hard to keep it from doing so. I told myself over and over that this only looked like Balkan Sobranie on the tin, but wouldn't taste like it. That was ok with me, as I was never a big fan of Sobranie White anyway, but I don't recall exactly why not.

This is a decent balkan blend - no glaring faults, but nothing to write home about. It should please the middle of the road crowd who like a blend that tastes like a balkan without all the heavy spiciness of the stronger ones. "Early Morning" pipers should be able to step into this one without too much fuss. As for me, when I want a latakia blend, this won't be the one I reach for but I wouldn't throw away a free tin, either.

Did the fact that the tin makes this look like Balkan Sobranie have any influence on my tastebuds. Probably. Hard to escape biases. Too bad... but I don't think this one would have worked for me anyway.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Percy Dovetussel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Percy Dovetussel (7)
★★☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

I bought this brand in expectation of revisiting the pleasures of Balkan Sobranie. However, this smoking experience proved to be not quite the same. The glory of the Balkan pugnent aroma is not quite there. Although the can and component make up of the blend reminds you of the Sobranie at every turn save for the drier nature of the tobacco when compared to the can of the mixture as it was in the old days. I suppose we have to be satisfied with substitution.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

viscfab Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
viscfab (81)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

I had the opportunity to appreciate a pouch of this blend 7 years ago and I thought of it as a good medium strenght English Blend. I preffer blends with Syrian Latakia rather than Cyprus Latakia, my opinion i that the tastes are less rustic and with a bit more overtones. This is a good blend though, but there are other better blends out there as Penzance and Mac Barens HH Syrian Vintag blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cmhpipesmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cmhpipesmoker (21)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This may have been another blend I went into with expectations higher than what they should have been. I so wanted to really like this tobacco, give it a four stars and add it to my limited rotation but I just found it to be mildly impressive. It's a medium heavy smoke, particularly as it ages, but I just didn't find that uniqueness I've found in other tobaccos. I'm finding that I'm drawn to heavier Balkan and English blends but also strive to find some character in them too. Unfortunately, BS just didn't have it for me. Asteroidhunter, below, states he prefers this over Bill Bailey's Balkan Blend. I'm just the opposite, I prefer BBBB over this. It definitely rates a three star rating but I'll keep looking to find another Balkan that gives that WOW! appeal. With the reviews I've read, I'm sure I'll have to move to the Pease blends if only I can find them at a reasonable price. If I can come across another tin of this locally, I may pick it up and let it cellar for a while before trying again. Maybe a little extra latakia added to it may make a blend that appeals to me a bit more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BrantlyMedders Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BrantlyMedders (7)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This was my first foray into English/Balkan tobaccos, having begun my pipe-smoking career with American style aromatics (like many other people I am sure). When I first began smoking it, I thought I was onto something really worthwhile. However, after finishing the tin and trying several other Balkan blends in circulation, I realized Balkan Sasieni was only mediocre.

There's nothing especially bad about it, but there is nothing extraordinary either. Unless I do a major turn-about, I doubt I will ever buy another tin.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sounds7 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sounds7 (16)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Full Tolerable

First the origin and blender of this tobacco is Peter Stokkebye in the USA specifically Charlotte NC http://www.peterstokkebye.com/pipe_tob.htm

Secondly concerning the description of leaf contained: the Latakia used here is from Northern Cypress and it uses Macedonian leaf for oriental. No specific Virginia types are mentioned. by comparison The original Balkan Sobrane used Syrian Latakia and Yenendje and red ribbon Virginia with some dark leaf virginia

The flavor of Balkan Sasieni is decent. It is a good tobacco but it is nothing like Sobranie because the tobaccos used in its creation are very different than the original Sobranie.

Perhaps it should be judged simply on its own merits and not any comparisons to past blends based off of psychology created by name and packaging likenesses. Lets face it, They are using those likenesses to get you to buy the tobacco and thats it. I could list a number of Balkans that are closer to sobranie than this mixture. Compton's Macedonia is one but even it is not really close to Balkan Sobranie. Until someone blends with Syrian Latakia, red Virginias, Yenendje and other orientals in the right proportions, there will be no Sobranie substitutes

3 stars as a Balkan/English blend 1 star as a Sobranie knockoff. That averages out to a 2 star rating

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DaveS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DaveS (11)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

A good tobacco, but in my opinion there are much better balkan/english blends to be had. i.e. Westminster, Abington, Larrys Blend, and Penzance.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Country Gentleman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Country Gentleman (28)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Cedar and mesquite. Smoked brisket without any sauce. A consistent campfire smoke that remains the same from bowl to bowl. I can understand why some like it - I also understand why some would expect something more.

I think it's ok. Between 2 and 3 stars right now. I might buy another tin.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BingCrosby Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BingCrosby (48)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

My first Balkan experience and i greatly enjoyed it.. this is a very nice dose of latakia and oriental as i expected with a nice light virginia.. very nice as an after dinner treat.. very woodsy and natural tasting.. as others have noticed this one changes a lot as it is smoked.. i notice a substantial increase in the latakia in the middle of the bowl.. but a strange sweet creaminess comes out in the end.. spicy throughout, very tasty.. i am tempted to buy more and see if a little age will improve this even more.. i really enjoyed it..

short edit.... i am picking up more on the orientals midbowl now.. but i am also noticing that this can be very difficult at times to smoke.. if you smoke it even a little bit fast the latakia/oriental can get pretty sour - which might explain a lot of negative feedback.. i still like it a lot - but i can see why some people might not.

another edit.. I just have to up this to 4 stars.. over time I just like this stuff more and more. I find it as pleasant as my black mallory which is saying a lot because that is another very nice blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

I bought a pound of this in 2006. Smoked a number of bowls in different pipes and found it to be both harsh and strong. Set the rest aside in a ball jar and just recently tried it again. It had certainly improved! Of course, my tastes could have changed in the last couple years but more likely it is the tobac that has aged well. I like it enough to buy some more and let it sit a little while. Aged, it's a good Balkan at a good price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RMBittner Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RMBittner (66)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I'm reviewing Balkan Sasieni's 2008 version, the 50g, tinned blend that is now being produced by Peter Stokkebye.

Balkans are my favorite style of blends. My experience with this blend -- and perhaps others here have been reviewing different versions -- differs somewhat from what other reviewers have noted.

Oriental flavors are forceful and very much present from the very first light. They dominate the first half of the bowl, then they give way -- completely -- to the latakia, which is the dominant flavor for the remainder of the smoke. The Virginias remain always in the background (which is what I expect from them in a Balkan blend).

There is very little time, over the course of a smoke, when the oriental and latakia flavors actually overlap and interact. In a dozen pipefuls -- smoked in a variety of pipes dedicated to Balkan blends -- the results have been identical: First half: Orientals; Second half: latakia. As a result, the two elements never seem able to combine for that indescribable oriental-latakia creaminess that the best Balkans deliver. And while I love latakia, for some reason I don't like what this becomes in the second half of the bowl.

In all of my experience as a pipe smoker of 28 years, I've never before encountered a blend that seemed so decisively divided in character down the bowl. As a result, this is not, in my opinion, the "standard" by which one should judge other Balkans.

In fact, after numerous bowls, I have come to a disheartening yet strong suspicion: That this "new" version of Balkan Sasieni (the tinned blend from Villiger/Stokkebye) actually is relying on oriental FLAVORING rather than actual quantities of high-quality leaf. My theory may be off-base. But the only other blends I've smoked that behaved this way -- that lost their predominating flavor halfway down the bowl and then just got unappealing -- were cheaply made aromatics with added flavorings that burnt off halfway down the bowl. (And flavorings, in lieu of leaf, would also account for the "competitive" pricing that some reviewers have noted.)

Whether I'm right or wrong, I still hope this blend can improve with age, because I stocked up, based on the blend's earlier reputation. For now, I'm going to toss the rest of my tin. I'll wait to see what happens in a couple of years with the other tins.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SirLoirn Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SirLoirn (126)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

Tin: Stokkebye blender, light smoky Latakia scent, light brown and black, supple and seemed to be at an optimal moisture level. Thin medium-lengthed ribbon cut. The flutted paper wrapping remniscent of a Dunhill, in a pancake tin.

Taste-Aroma: Top 1/3: Soft and smooth oriental and Latakia, but no where near the taste-aroma effusion of GLP's Odyssey. Odyssey is full, BS is medium.

Middle: From there, it went downhill, producing a peppery effect, or tongue bite, with an aromatic, raw cardboard taste and aroma.

Consecutive bowls had this diagreeable taste and classic tongue bite.

Nicotine: Medium strong

Room Note: Light, fragrant nutty

Overall: I don't know how one reviewer knows it has propylene glycol(PG) as a humectant but maybe this is the source of the cardboard taste or the tongue bite. It has great potential at the start but develops a poor quality down the bowl, and subsequent. I think it's overpriced. One star.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Silver Spigot Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Silver Spigot (18)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

Too much Latakia; this one is bitter and leaves a nasty after-taste. I can't understand why this blend is so popular.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Punisher Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Punisher (44)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Update 03/23/2009

I have tried Maltese Falcon recently and was very disappointed by this blend. The taste is very pleasurable at first but quickly settles into the bland side, as where Balkan Sasieni remains consistent all the way, picking up in strength, spiciness and sweetness past mid-bowl.

Add the fact that it is inexpensive, and I can only recommend Balkan Sasieni. Once more.

Update 01/13/2009

Still very satisfied with this blend. The positive side is the outstanding and highly competitive price, compared to other blends offered on the market. Not the greatest of Balkan/English, but BS beats a lot of them out there.

Every time I open the tin, I am welcomed by that rich aroma of Latakias, sweet Orientals and matured VAs. Every time I light up, the Orientals and Latakia combine in a sweet and spicey combination that leaves me speechless for a long moment. A bit harsh at first, but it quickly settles towards creaminess.

Stokkebye certainly pulled their weight for this blend. Bravo!

Original Review 07/29/2008

Gentlemen, let's face it and get over it: the original Balkan Sobranie has been discontinuated!

" But what we have with Balkan Sasieni is never as good as the original!",so I have read numerous times. AT LEAST, we have an alternative to the original mixture!

Balkan Sasieni, even and especially produced by Stokkebye, is actually a very decent tobacco and has nothing to envy to Dunhill, which is now produced by Orlik ( And, apparently, has derived from the original recipes, so I was told) and has skyrocketed in price over the last months! Balkan Sasieni has nothing to envy to other Balkan classics, in my humble opinion.

Dear colleagues, this mixture DELIVERS! A fine cut, shorter than the original, yes, but still dark with Latakia: lots of Latakia! Yes, Stokkebye managed to stick to the Balkan Sasieni original recipe. It's as if it was still produced in London by Sasieni!

A bit harsh upon lighting, but for a very short period, the mixture then smoothes down in a nice creaminess; my palate was elevated to a metaphysical state upon tasting the oh so spicy, rich Latakia and the sweet oriental that compose this mixture.

Pure pleasure of the senses and an acceptable nicotine level, all this under 6$. I don't know for you, distinguished colleagues, but I am stocking up!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Thoth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Thoth (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

For me this blend is the standard I judge all Balkan blends.

The main components of this blend; orientals, latakia and virginias; compliment and contrast each on nicely.

The fine ribbon cut packs and lights easily. If you are looking for a strong hit of latakia from this blend, you will be disappointed. While present it plays a supporting role to the oritentals, it is in the background adding a fullness and smoothness to the orientals. In this blend the orientals take front stage. Also the virginias pop up from time to time adding a toasty sweetness.

Smoking this blend puts one in the mind of drinking a fine iIslay scotch, with the smokey spicy flavor and subtle sweetness.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Northern Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Northern (6)
★☆☆☆
Medium Extra Strong Overwhelming Tolerable

The only reason for writing this review is that my opinion seems so at variance to most others that it may be worth recording. I had a small tin sent over from the states - where it is cheap - not knowing that this stuff was supposed to have something to do with Balkan Sob. which I used to smoke ages ago. I'm talking about the white 50g tin issued by Stokkebye - which I think may not be the same stuff that is reviewed elsewhere on this page. About three puffs into the first bowl I was sure that this stuff was rubbish - the blend has something in it that is SO PEPPERY as to be unsmokeable, and that's not the worst of it. In subsequent smokes in the same pipe you get pepper pepper and more pepper for weeks - no matter what tobacco that you use. I have tried a tiny bit of it added to other tobaccos as a flavouring to spice them up a bit - but still pepper is all you get. If you are going to try this tobacco, then I would strongly advise the use of a pipe that you can chuck out afterward, unless you are prepared to burn the taste away over time. I do not think that this is a poor quality product as such, but the peppery taste is unbearably strong - for me at least - and I am used to all sorts of strong tobaccos. Good luck with this one!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

19volks71 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
19volks71 (9)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I have just finished another tin of this delicious smoke. Sasieni is what originally turned me on to Balkans. It is well balanced and with a proper light, will burn cool and dry.

I keep plenty of tins around.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Big bad Jon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big bad Jon (232)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

I had high expectations of this blend and I can attest to the fact that they were all happily met. The tin note was musty and smoky exactly what I was looking for. The cut was a bit finer that I expected. Not as fine as Smokers Haven 20th Anniversary, but slightly finer that average. This caused the blend to get a bit warm if smoked with much intensity. The tobacco was not very wet so this was not really a problem. I think this blend would be best smoked in a large bowl. Upon lighting the tobacco never required a relight, and produced a delightful white ask. The flavor was assertive and bold, but had a slight sweetness to it. Not as much ad Dunhill aperitif but more than Abingdon. The latakia is well balanced with the Turkish, but is tipped in the favor of Latakia. I really enjoyed this blend and look forward to trying it again real soon.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

p4p4 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
p4p4 (52)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

This one is a very balkan style blend. Not very similar with balkan sobranie but complex , spicy, exotic, genuine with a little horse dung flavor like the original, just a pinch of soapy or make-up and a little butter-like flavor.....but less that the original, good latakia and very good orientals, just structural virginia.....no Kentucky....no Cavendish....no Perique....., dry taste, not sweet and not harsh.

For very reflexive moments.........oh genuine taste and very good flavor ! Yes, this is good ! This one is my favorit Balkan Blend today. Note : SMOKE IT SLOW !!! if you don't smoke it slow it becomes bit and not pleasant. But if you smoke it slow.....it becomes a wonderfull complex blend with very balkan taste and flavor. ------- PS= similar to the P.Olsen Balkan ? yes, but sasieni is better because genuine. The Olsen blend probably is Balkan sasieni with very lot chemistry. So i prefer the sasieni !!!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jankoez Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jankoez (67)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant to Tolerable

I completely agree with tabaco?s review just below.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tabaco Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tabaco (69)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable

Well maybe my hopes were too high, with the nice and somewhat Sorbranie looking packaging. I knew that it would be highly unlikely for this to be a replica; however, I thought it would at least be in the ball park.

I did not care for this very much; rather monochromatic and dull. I doubt if there is any Yenidge in this at all. I tried to detect it, alas none came through. I also found this tobacco burned too hot for my liking. There are much better tobaccos out there by G.L. Pease and CAO/DAN and others which cost a few dollars more but deliver much more satisfaction; as far as my palate goes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

thedstnguishdgntlmn Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thedstnguishdgntlmn (360)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I did not like this but others may. A very light English with absolutely no character. Add McClelland's blending Perique and it can be saved and turned into a decent and serviceable tobacco. But really, why bother? I just happened to have an open tin of the Perique. I would skip this. NOT a BALKAN at all. More like a light English. A lot of better stuff out there.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

clovis-man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
clovis-man (2)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

It's been a while since I've smoked this blend. Like many, I looked for it in the past because of the possibility that it might resemble the Balkan Sobranie of yore. Sadly, a perfect match is impossible, due to unavailability of some key ingredients and the arcana of blending techniques. but for some time, I was satisfied with the pouches of this blend that I was able to obtain. The flavor was mildly spicy and the latakia content in the medium range. All of which contributed to a nice blend, but nothing that would be superior to other similar mixtures out there from several other blenders.

My first tin of this blend as distributed by Villiger Stokkebye was something of a surprise. The first thing I noticed was the strength of the blend. More in the Nightcap range than the pouch blends. The latakia content was foremost with the oriental component definitely taking second chair. However, right out of the tin, the burn was excellent and right to the bottom of a tall W.O. Larsen. The flavor was consistent from the top on down: smooth and full bodied. Not an all-day smoke, but something for a quiet, refective time.

This one may find its way into a regular rotation for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

R.Morris Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
R.Morris (5)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Smokes easy. Only starting light needed. Great summer blend for these hot days in east Texas. A little bitter upon lighting, but that goes away quick. Always have some on hand. I have 3 pounds cellaring. In 4 months will open and see if 18 months made a difference. It is one blend I can smoke all day long and not worry about. Strong 3.5 star blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

firstsealord Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
firstsealord (22)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I must admit I was bewaring of this blend when I heard it was now produced by Stokkebye rather than Sasieni in London; tobacco manufacturers in Denmark have a radical and, mainly,different approach to what a Balkan or English blend must be like..often to the detriment of the quantity of Latakia put into the tin, thus to the detriment of the poor smoker!

But, my practical side ( i.e."cheap") decided to risk the experience, especially at 5,85$ a tin at http://www.pipesandcigars.com. What did I have to loose? Not much!

I was surprised to find an almost identical mixture than the one available in pouches, besides a cut that appears less long and what seemed to be a bit less of Latakia. That illusion is created by the shorter cut for, when I reach into the tin to lay down the tobacco on the chart table, prior to planning the filling passage, there is lots of Latakia present, just like the original ( in pouch,during the 90s that is, not the 70s and prior...which I am unaware of).

A bit on the dried side, but with a good level of humidity, this tobacco is a pleasure to smoke. Nothing really sophisticated, but definitively enjoyable. A nice alternative between the sweetness of the orientals, spiceness of the Latakia and the more pure tobacco taste of bright VA interplay all along. Three distinctive tastes, no more, no less. Its simpliness allows maximum enjoyment of nice flavors. And this is often better than too much "sophistication".

Definitively recommended, this is a First Sealord-friendly tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Decent blend...not as good as Nightcap. Nice price...6.25 per 50g. For me, who cares if it comes in a pouch. Nicely ribboned and predominantly Dark in color. Found quite a few stems, not pleased with this....poor quality control.

Burned well....but not overly complex to my palate.

This would be one of those blends that you feel blessed to find while at a remote location after forgetting your kit at home. For me this won't be kept as a staple...but I may keep the pouch to dip into at a later point in time.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Stacey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stacey (40)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Full Very Pleasant

Updated 6/12/2008

I got a tin of this recently and have smoked it beside Gawith Hoggarth's Balkan Mixture and it doesn't compare to that one. This isn't bad, though, it's just weaker by comparison. A bit cheaper though. Still, I no longer consider this 4 star. A strong 3 instead.

Original Review from 6/23/2007 follows

I ordered some of this from http://www.Cupojoes.com and got just a couple of ounces to try since I was ordering "Full Virginia Flake" to see what the 4 stars were about. I got this jiffy quick and decided to try it first. The first bowl went pretty uneventful, with just a hint of the fullness here or there. No big deal, I don't place much stock in the first bowl.

The second bowl on the other hand (and every one since then), was awesome. Did I figure out how to pack it or did my taste buds just figure it out? Hmmm. Anyway, I've never had the Balkan Sobranie, but this was great. It started out and I'm thinking, this isn't sweet at all, and I usually like sweet tobacco. There is this clean, refreshing spicy quality to it, scinitillating, rich and smooth. It's a bit of a slow light but stays lit easily once you get it going.

Midway through I'm sure now that I was mistaken, there is some faint sweetness to it, but this is a plus combined with those tantalizing natural flavors (must be the orientals). The clove smell from the pouch must be the latakia that is giving it that taste that is so hard to describe. I like that too, far better than Benjamin Hartwell's Chesdin Mixture. I'm always looking for better stuff and will definitely try some of the other Balkan mixtures that are supposed to be better but in the mean time I'll keep some of this around and it will definitely be in the regular rotation until I find something better.

Incidentally, CupoJoes was a fast shipper and even though I accidentally ordered one that was wrong, they offered to swap for what I wanted (Penzance), if I shipped it back to them. Very decent of them and they will defnitely be getting most of my mail order business.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

oldmanpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
oldmanpipe (62)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

For the record: Balkan Sasieni is in NO WAY like the Balkan Sobranie Original Mixture of the 1970s or earlier. That sainted weed contained Yenidje as the oriental component, and it was processed by means lost to antiquity. And more's the pity; that tobacco has never been--nor will it ever be--equalled. I smoked a ton of it, and would do so again if I could.

Balkan Sasieni contains Macedonian leaf...as did Sobranie 759...and there is where the comparison should lie, except there is no way to compare the two. Balkan Sobranie 759 is gone; Balkan Sasieni is available...and it ain't bad, at all. One could do far worse...and I have.

This tobacco has a distinctly Danish character, not an English one. Sobranie House of London pulled out of America when the tobacco lawsuits started, and who can blame them?

Balkan Sasieni is a surprisingly good Latakia/Oriental blend by modern standards. Its nearest competitor is Greg Pease's "Blackpoint," which is no small tribute. Blackpoint is more sophisticated and interesting, but Balkan Sasieni can hold its own.

It is somewhat of a stretch to call this a Balkan blend; the flavors are a bit bright, though stimulating and refreshing. It will likely be a regular in my cold-weather rotation.

A very good smoke for the money!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

LeGunnCat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LeGunnCat (18)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend is awesome. It's very difficult for me to tell the difference between this blend and the much heralded Balkan Sobranie. In fact I have been smoking BS (The Original Mixture) for the last week and I don't think I would be able to tell the difference between the 2 blends with one noticeable difference - the sweetness of the Virginia's. I can tell I will smoking a lot more of this blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

peakbagger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
peakbagger (41)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I've gone through several pounds of this in bulk in the last few years, until recently I've never bought the packaged or tinned version. I've always found it to be a nice medium-taste Balkan. I've now opened a new tin (purchased from Pipes and Cigars) and it seems very similar to the bulk version I've been smoking. This is a fragrant mixture, with the emphasis on the Orientals, the Latakia follows and the VAs stay in the background. To my taste more tangy than sweet. 8 out of 10 stars.

Note: Balkan Supreme, from Stokkebye [same manufacturer], is similar and pleasant.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Latakia Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Latakia (67)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

A nicely ribbon cut. Predominately black with brown tobacco mixed in. Very nice leather smell from the pouch. Burns very well as a result of the ribbon cut but gave a bit of a tongue bite. Tangy touch probably from the Macedonian leaf. Agree from the reviews that there are better latakias out there but if one can't find a proper tobacconist, this is readily available and affordable. I would't have this as a regular unless I couldn't get a better latakia. Prefer the fullness of Odessey or the nice leather of 965. Not bad but not outstanding either.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Guyrox Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Guyrox (131)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Update 10/12/2009

I finally tried a tin instead of a pouch, manufactured by Stokkebye. Was that ever a smart move on my part!

Despite the high amount of Latakia, the room aroma remains pleasant. Even my wife did not complain at all. She never noticed I was smoking a Latakia blend.

There is truly a difference between the same blend when it is produced in a tin vs a pouch. The tin is always better, of course.

This is a medium balkan blend, fit for an all day smoke. It smokes better than the pouch version. And has all that I like: the smokiness of the Latakia combined with the sweetness of the orientals and the grassiness of the VA.

It just needs to be smoked at a decent pace. If not, it willl tend to bite a bit.

Definitively recommended, this time!

Original review 08/25/2007

Humm...I've ordered a couple pouches of this one, after a hiatus of at least 10 years...I can't say I really loved it.

The bakkie is a long cut, mostly dark with brown leaf. The moisture level was very low, almost a bit dry upon opening.

The aroma is balkan big time, big Latakia/Oriental; couldn't make out the VA in there.

Easy too fill, easy to light, burns a long, long time because it's a very dark mixture. The moisturte level kind of dried out my mouth and the proportion of Latakia made it a bit too much on the taste buds and turned down the fun somehow, because it prevented me from tasting the orientals or the VAs.

Definitely a good quality blend, but maybe a bit too much latakia for my liking...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jmartindale Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jmartindale (22)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Several reviewers have commented that Peter Stokkebye's "Balkan Supreme" is the same blend as Balakan Sasieni. Well, PS may manufacture both Balkan Sasieni and Balkan Supreme, but the two blends are not identical, in my opinion.

The two blends are similar - no question, but there are both differences in physical appearance and taste between the two blends. To me, Balkan Sasieni is a more elegant and refined blend with less up-front Latakia and it tastes (paradoxically) sweeter and has more tangy "sourness" than Supreme.

It's that unique sourness of Balkan Saseini that I love and Supreme does has some of this, but at a much lower level. I'm probably splitting hairs here, because there is a lot of similarity between the two blends and Supreme is much less expensive, but Balkan Sasieni is the better blend in my opinion (and perhaps, due to its more expensive price, should be!)

And, despite the Danish heritage and PG shared by both blends, Balkan Sasieni is in a class by itself and remains my favorite Balkan. At once sweet, sour, rich, and mild. Balkan Sasieni delivers these attributes uniquely and the Balkan lover is treated to a tremendous smoking experience.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ABSSiegel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ABSSiegel (21)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

Although it's NOT the famed Balkan Sobranie, it is a close second. Sasieni is a good Balkan blend that should satisfy most smokers looking for that Latakia "euphoria" that so many of us adore. "Smoke 'em if you got 'em boys".

Nobody has rated this review yet.

A. Morley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
A. Morley (73)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Full Strong

I have never smoked Balkan Sobranie and chances are I never will. As such, I will never fully understand the resentful nostalgia with which it is held by the likes of Ben Rappaport or Daniel Pinkwater, and I do wish that various blending houses would stop trying to make copies of it that they think are going to make them worshiped in the same way. I have no doubt from the packaging and the description on the pouch that this is exactly what Balkan Sasieni was trying to accomplish.

All this aside, Balkan Sasieni is a perfectly respectable mixture and a perfectly ordinary Balkan blend. The base of bright Virginia is of a typically high, strident nature, but in no way diminishes from the flavor experience because there is so little of it. There is a good deal of Latakia which works perfectly well with the Orientals but can become harsh and bitter-sweet if smoked too fast, but a Balkan should never be smoked fast to begin with. The Orientals, which are, after all, what a Balkan should be about, are entirely average and provide exactly the sort of pungent perfume and wood quality that they are supposed to with no amazing surprises of astounding innovations or variations in flavor. Puff slowly and respectfully and you will be in for a full-bodied though entirely amiable smoking experience.

The likes of Greg Pease or Dan Tobacco make some simply amazing Balkans that will knock your socks off and make you want to do nothing but sit and smoke until you can simply smoke no more, Balkan Sobranie of sainted memory may well have done the same thing, but I am nearly past the point of caring. If you have never smoked a Balkan blend and desire the basic essence of what the style is all about, Balkan Sasieni will give you that and nothing more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

As a Balkan I find Balkan Sasieni to be a reasonably good one, but not the best of the Balkans. I do smoke a lot of this, I buy it in bulk and keep it in the car for thru the day smokes. To me there is little sweetness from the Virginia. The Oriental is there but it is a light Oriental to me. The Latakia is a very smoky one and adds the usual mustyness to the smoke. I get no bite with this blend. It packs and lights very easy burns down to a powdery dark grey ash. When I could get this in the can I thought the moisture content was perfect, with the bulk, I find the mix to be a little dryer than I like. Again, I find this a good Balkan, an enjoyable smoke that I don't get tired of. For my tastes the better Balkans have more robust Virginias, Orientals, and Syrian Latakia.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipepundit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipepundit (168)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Balkan Sasieni, Balkan Supreme, Bohemian Scandal ... the gravitational pull of the Balkan Sobranie has not diminished. Since Sasieni deliberately invites a comparison with the Original Mixture, it would not be unfair to measure them against each other.

On opening the tin the aroma from Sasieni is only a family resemblance to the Sobranie - the latter being much more comlex and rich. In the bowl both have a somewhat rough beginning but while Sobranie blossoms into a hypnotic, well-rounded smoke, Sasieni remains earth bound and does not deliver on the initial promise of the tin aroma. Both the latakia and the orientals in the Sobranie are superior, producing, in combination, that incense like note. The find the kind of satisfaction that Balkan Sobranie used to provide I now turn to Penzance or Odyssey.

The comparison is based on a Balkan Sasieni tin dated April 2006 and a Balkan Sobranie pouch from about 1993.

On its own merits Balkan Sasieni is an eminently smokable light to middle weight Balkan, but to enjoy it one has to put all thoughts of the Balkan Sobranie away.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (140)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

I will preface this review by saying that I have never tried the famous tobacco that this is supposed to be a copy of; Balkan Sobranie. However I have had some fine Balkan tobaccos and this doesn't measure up. It is tasty and a little spicy but that's it, I get more flavor from 965. I was expecting a near religious experience, due to the reputation of Sobranie.

I realize that they were not able to acquire exactly all of the tobaccos that were in Sobranie, but if it tasted anywhere near this then I do not see what all the fuss is about. That being said, this is a good tobacco for those wanting a light Balkan and I can see no major fault in it, except that it fails to live up to the reputation of it's predecessor.

For a rich spicy Balkan try Charing Cross by G.L. Pease.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tacoeatingzebra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tacoeatingzebra (36)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have a Wilmer that is dedicated to this stuff for the time being. While I am a great lover of latakia-- and this stuff has a fair, but not abundant amount-- what really stands out in this blend to me are the Orientals and the Virginias, which seem to meld in such a way to create almost a wassail-like clove-y sweet sour taste that swims in & out during the course of a bowl.

Like a lot of good English/Balkan blends, Balkan Sasieni realls what I love most about Indian/Pakistani cuisine, and that is heavy, rich spicy flavors where at times the ingredients work in unison, but at other times each & every element gently pushes its way to the fore.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kleophrades Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kleophrades (39)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Strong

I was attracted to this blend by smelling it in the pipe of another smoker. But it not deliver on its promise. The storied name aside, it's nothing more than an anemic Balkan. The Latakia is faint at best, the Orientals are nothing special and the Virginia is mere filler. If there's a market for mild Balkans -- an oxymoron if ever there was one -- then this might fill that niche. But I can't see any point to buying this when there are so many truly fine Balkans on the market (e.g. Pease's Odyssey).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Relapse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Relapse (14)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Since I relapsed into smoking after a 20 year hiatus, I've been looking for a substitute of the vanished Holy Grail of tobaccos, Balkan Sobranie. So far in less than a year I've tried about a dozen "Balkan" style blends from different brands. Somebody mentioned B. Sasieni as the one most closely resembling Balkan Sobranie so I went and got me some.

I don't know if the fact that I got it in bulk has anything to do with its actual quality --it's quite possible that 50g tins are better- however, the weed I got is but the palest shadow of the original Sobranie.

The cut is pathetic; thin short ribbons, almost a shag, that pack unevenly and break into quasi-powder if you rub them loose. Nothing like the even thick flakes of the old BS. The pouch aroma lacks the intoxicating promise of BS; it's flat and unappealing, with a hint of fermentation.

The VA's while good, lack the fullness I had associated with good Balkans. Also, the orientals are timid, albeit giving a sweetish note to the blend that is not unpleasant. The latakias, however, are the most timid variety I've ever tasted and they become almost a whisper. They're there but you have too really pay attention to find them. The variety is almost for sure Ciprus and not Siria, and lacks the great cedar and pine woods aroma that the old BS gave.

The room note is barely tolerable. Thre are lots of "Balkans" that will be well appreciated by non-smokers but Sasieni is not one of them.

About the best recommendation I can give on it is that it lights easily, keeps lit without trouble if you take the trouble to painstakingly separate the ribbons and let the mix aereate for a few hours before packing it again. It usually burns down to the bottom of the pipe with very little dottle or none at all.

If you want a decent BS wannabe, try one of the GLP blends, like Oddyssey or Charing Cross. Another good Balkan blend is SG Perfection, albeit quite different.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

donk93953 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
donk93953 (18)
★★☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

I'm old enough , like many here, too remember the original. This is no where near the taste of the original. It is indeed zesty and I might pick it up if there was nothing else available.....But there are alot of others that fill the void of the ole Sobraine....I'll reach for the Frog, or a Pease.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Seems to be a "safe" Balkan to be happily consumed when the price is right and no superior alternatives are available----assuming the quality of production remains consistent (which seems to be the issue with this blend).

A cut that is a little too fine for my taste, a slight nip of the tongue unless handled carefully, and an almost cigarette-like acrid room note could make this a "somewhat recommended" blend. These factors do not by any means outweigh the decent qualities that this product can provide to the Balkan smoker, however, and some may find these qualities actually more in line with their own particular tastes.

Overall a decent product and a significant member of the Balkan family of blends.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Professor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Professor (67)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

Balkan Sasieni is certainly worth a try, but not worth keeping around. The Virginia weed is not quite the quality that I would like, the Orientals are not as buttery as I prefer, and the Latakia is, well, that is fine actually. It smells wonderful in the pouch, is a bit dry in appearance, and smokes fine apart from some slight harshness and the fact that is it rather light. Balkan Sasieni is difficult to obtain and that is just fine as there are much better Balkan blends out there.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Collezionista Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Collezionista (59)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong

Not much I can add that hasn't already been said about this classic Balkan blend. Some of the above reviewers tend to be put off by its tendency to bite but I would say this bites no more than other tobaccos with similar tobacco content. It has more of a sourness to it than Charing Cross, my favorite in this class, but the Sasieni is so cheap and available that I smoke it quite a bit. At only $5 for a 50g pouch this may be the best tobacco value out there. Solid stuff!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Lochinvar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lochinvar (71)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This Balkan has undergone quite the change. The price dropped as did the quality. All I really get is some uninspiring Virginias and some bottom barrel Cyprian, a light Camel/Turkish note, though not much of a Turkish taste. I guess its better than no Balkan at all...but only by a little.

Pipe Used: BC Rhodesian

Purchased From: 4Noggins

Nobody has rated this review yet.

emmbee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
emmbee (174)
★★☆☆
Extremely Strong None Detected Extra Full Very Pleasant

WOW! That?s the first word that came to mind when the match grazed a bowl filled with this superlative tobacco. It took less than a second for the spicy orientals to reach my tongue and the explosive peppery aroma to hit the nose. This is an immense, complex Balkan that ranks in the top of its class. Unlike coffee, which usually tastes better in the package than in the cup, Sasieni actually tastes and burns better than the initial pack aroma. As for all the complaints about the Captain Black pouch, though I don?t much care for it either, all I can say is: get over it. It?s about what?s inside the package that counts, and Sasieni contains the best there is. You couldn?t ask for a richer, more satisfying tobacco taste. Anyone savoring a full Balkan blend will find their every need met in Sasieni.

This is a pure tobacco treasure: full, dark, exotic, mysterious, like a beautiful woman on the Orient Express that turns the corner and disappears into a compartment. Sasieni actually gets better as it gets down the bowl, revealing a complexity of nuances, some subtle, others distinct and aggressive. This is the type of excitement I expected from Nightcap. Alas, that blend doesn?t hold a match to this one.

I can?t smoke this all day due to its strength and the fact that if smoked just a little too quickly, can start to burn the tongue. It?s almost a small price to pay for such a luscious, chewy smoke. And it?s a great value, too! I can?t say enough about this one. It will definitely be part of my regular rotation.

Five of five stars

9-1-05 update: i've downgraded. still spicy, exotic, rich stuff, but it's overwhelming and will set your tongue and palate afire. too bad that such a harmonious blend of orientals is just a little too over the top. i still appreciate this blend for what it is, but i can't smoke it very often without serious injury.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Lancelot Gobbo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lancelot Gobbo (23)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

I haven't tried a new version of Balkan Sobranie, and bought this because in the early eighties I smoked BS exclusively for a while. This has the same overwhelming smokiness, but tends to be a bit hotter than I recall BS being. An easy smoke, it lights easily and stays lit, with dry grey ash and little dottle left at all. I think I prefer English mixtures to Balkan mixtures now, though. For the latakia lover, a delight.

PS remember the print inside the lid of the old BS tins? "A long cool smoke to calm a troubled world" and all that. Then something about the addition of "rare yenidje leaf".

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sasha Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sasha (228)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I think this tobacco is a good value for the price you pay it, nothing more and nothing less. It's good, that's for sure, but you can find dozens of better blends out there. Nonetheless this can give nice satisfactions to the latakia lovers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

If you are a Latakia lover this is a four star mixture. If you like Latakia in small amounts as in a balanced blend (no more than 15% or so) then I would go with a two and one-half star rating. It does have high quality ingredients though. I have never smoked the vaunted Balkan Sobranie so I have no way to compare the two.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (125)
★★☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

There are essentially two differences between this blend and the Balkan Sobranie of old. First is the Virginia component, and second is the oriental component. You can use the same recipe to make two cakes, but if you use all purpose flour and cocoa rather than cake flour and baker's chocolate, the cakes will be different. In any case this Balkan Sasieni is a pretty good balkan mixture; it just does not resemble the old Balkan Sobranie to any great degree. The the oriental leaf lacks the zest and the distinctive flavor found in the old Sobranie. And the finish is quite cloying which I suspect is due to this particular latakia/oriental combination. I can smoke this tobacco, but I do not care much for the finish.

By the way, I think the new version of Balkan Sobranie is closer to the old version than is the Sasieni. However, it also lacks the oriental element. It is pretty good, though, and I like it better than the Sasieni. Paddy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

smoker390 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
smoker390 (36)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

One of my first, and still what I consider one of the bechmarks of Balkan blends. I do not wish to compare to Balkan Sobranie, as the Balkan Sobranie I first began smoking in the early 1990's is known to be considerably different from the Balkan Sobranie of old. Not to mention - Balkan Sobranie is sadly no more, we must move on. I must agree with Farndog's review categorically. I'd like to add a recommedation to all that have experienced excess moisture, bitterness, or flavor lacking issues: Try it in an authentic gourd calabash. If that is not possible for you, I recommend bulk purchase rather than pouch.

My experience gets better as I smoke through my 2 - 4 ounce supply. Balkan Sasieni has a uniqueness as there is a slight floral edge in the taste. It still has the campfire, exotic spice taste, but it's almost as if one is burning a "sweeter" wood in the campfire like hickory, spruce, or cedar. Those who did not enjoy, but still embrace Balkan blends; follow my calabash / bulk advice and see if that changes your review.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

FiveRings Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
FiveRings (21)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Extremely pleasant balkan with a good balance of VAs , Latakia and Macedonian leafs. Nutty in taste , mildly complex, yet never boring. Bites a little and as others have noticed matches perfecty with larger sized bowls.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tiger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tiger (53)
★★☆☆
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Strong

I enjoy Balkan (or Balkan/English) blends but my take on Balkan Sasieni is about in line with "Pipestud" and "RCUSElder". Balkan Sasieni is a good quality blend, and it's tasty, and has pretty decent lighting/burning properties. It's easy enough to understand many Balkan fans liking this one. It's certainly more hospitable than #965 so I think it should definitely be on the short-list of tobaccos to try for anyone wanting to give Balkans or Balkan/English blends a whirl. For me personally, there are several other blends of this genre that I prefer for various reasons.... but mostly because it seems bland, or maybe "uninteresting", to me, and it can go annoyingly sour. Be advised, too, the Latakia dominates the room note and hangs around a goodly while. Will say Balkan Sasieni seems to do best for me in meerschaums. Cool looking can too.

Tiger

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Thatcher Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Thatcher (58)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

A fine mixture, but didn?t really leave me craving for more. Lacks the complexity of other balkans I?ve tried. Strikes me as very Danish in nature; can't quite put my finger on what it is about it. May give it another try in the future, but for now I?ll stick to the Pease balkans and others that are more exciting than Sasieni.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Keeper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Keeper (112)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

-- Update 12/2004 --

After about a year, while still a high quality tobacco, it simply doesn't keep my interest for very long. While smoking it I find enjoyment. Afterwards I'm not as enthralled with this as I am with something like Charing Cross.

-----------

If Balkan Sobranie was half this good, I can understand why it was a classic mixture.

I find this a light, creamy tasting mix of latakia sweet/smokienes, tangy orientals and mild cigar notes. It has all the flavor complexity of some of Pease's finest, and the quality of Dunhill's tobacco. I've seen it likened to Caravan. I never warmed up to that blend but feel that perhaps Sasieni accomplishes what Carvan doesn't...at least to my taste buds.

Very smooth and well behaved. The only detriment I find with it is that at times I may consider it too light in flavor and strength. It is perfect for a humid summer afternoon or cool morning.

It is a leaf I will likely keep around most of the time.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Cellarmaster Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Cellarmaster (13)
★☆☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Didn't take much to realize this tobacco was not for me. Everything I would expect from a English blend was there but I thought it all to be a bit flat. Nothing really stood out that would grab my attention. For me this tobacco smoked much warmer than I would have expected from a blend like this. I'll keep the rest around and use it to fill one of my knockaround pipes when I could use a quick nicotein hit. Thats about all it is good for. Overall a tired unsatisfactory smoke, I'll spend my time elsewhere.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

purpleronald Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
purpleronald (16)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium Very Full Very Strong

My wife hates it; I love it. I recently lit up a bowl of a disgusting 'peppermint' scented aromatic... and my wife said 'Now I like that one!' I almost became teary... It was horrible...and she had the nerve to 'love it'. I have tried in vain to explain to her the natural ecstasy and coziness of smoking Balkan Sasieni...and how it reminds me of a great cigar - a kind of natural charcoal and coffee flavor that fades in and out... It also burns well down to a soft, dry, white ash. Perfection! I love it... Maybe someday I'll find the perfect latakia blend - one that smells like roses and fruit to the world but still tastes and smells like Balkan Sasieni to me. Until that great day...I'll be frequenting the porch and taking a few long walks. It's my favorite!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (297)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Ok, so they say they recreated the original formula of Balkan Sobranie. Some even say that this stuff is better than the Sobranie of today (which is universally considered worse than the old one). I must confess I never tried the Sobranie of old, so I can't comment on the first statement. What I CAN say, is that this stuff sucks even in comparison to the Balkan Sobranie that is sold now: it takes little thought to understand that probably Sasieni is the loser of the bunch, and that it is NOT a true recreation of the original recipe. And after all, at such a low price, how can you expect it to be as good as a tobacco so famous for its pricey ingredients? The first 1-2 bowls from a new pouch were decent: not memorable (nice smoky and pungent taste at first, but a somewhat dull and ashy second half of the bowl), but at least with some taste. I am beginning to suspect it was due to the pipes I was using: I had smoked Pirate Kake in them, and that had left a nice strong Latakia taste... Why do I say this? Because all the following bowls went downhill. Now, in almost all my pipes (almost, because in some of them it is slighlty better... but not much) it tastes like a cheap, undistinguished light english mixture, with more orientals than Latakia, and a sort of "cardboard"-like taste. You really can't compare the dull taste of this one with the wave of flavors that Balkan Sobranie offers! I have tried several pipes dedicated to english mixtures, and in none of them Sasieni shined. It packs and burns fine, but the taste and flavor leave MUCH to be desired (while not terrible, mind me). No reason for me to try this one again: aside from Balkan Sobranie, which is still available here and which I keep smoking regularly, there are MANY better tasting Latakia mixtures out there!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Adguru Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Adguru (20)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Great latakia, leather like note in the tin. It has the texture of a shag, which I don't really like, but I got used to it here. Gravity filling the bowl and then twisting in an equal amount made for a one light smoke. The tobacco is fairly dry in the tin, much the same as a GL Pease tobacco. To me, it smoked the same from light to the bottom of the bowl; making a fine bright white ash, if that matters to anyone. It is an excellent tobacco. I've never had a bowl of the original Balkin Sobrane, so I don't have that bias to deal with.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

malthus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
malthus (5)
★★★☆
Extremely Mild None Detected Very Full Tolerable to Strong

In the estimation of many audiophiles, Dennon receivers represent a first rung on the ladder of stereo excellence. The same argument can be made for this blend. Spend a little less for your tobacco, and you find yourself in the company of mass-market aromatic smokers; pay a lot more and you will only get a marginally superior product from a competitor. Sasieni utilized a pouch as a cost-saving measure. Ditch it. Allow Balkan Sasieni to relax a bit in an old tin. I use an empty Dunhill Standard Medium Mixture can--the 100 gram size. To minimize Balkan Sasieni?s tendency to deposit a tarry tooth film, store it in a humidor for several days at 65% humidity to ensure that moisture content is established on the low side. As an added precaution, keep a pipe cleaner handy and begin swabbing when the first gurgle appears. A well-caked briar will aid in your efforts to tame this high-spirited blend. Rub out any amount sufficient to gravity-feed your pipe. Press down firmly. Top with fine ?ignition powder? and set fire to your bowl. After only a few puffs, you will find yourself enveloped in rich, spicy/tart tobacco smoke, which when exhaled through the nose will have the herbaceous piquancy of green onions. Caution: This exercise, if done with too much enthusiasm, will briskly remind you why chopping onions for chili has made grown men cry, ?Oh, my!? Pair Balkan Sasieni with a Stolichnaya Pertsovka vodka martini--very dry, three cocktail onions, please--to compliment the tobacco?s peppery, astringent and slightly sour taste. A distinct benefit derives from this arrangement: If you fail to keep your pipe hermetically clean, vodka is an excellent solvent for cleaning sooty teeth. Buy a bag of Balkan blend, mix a pitcher of martinis (You can?t be too protective of tooth enamel, can you?), and put some background zither music on the stereo, the better to appreciate Balkan Sasieni?s m

Nobody has rated this review yet.

preppypipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
preppypipe (57)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

WOW! This is one great tobacco! I had previously thought that this was just a cheap drugstore knock off of "Balkan Sobraine". Boy was I wrong! The tobacco was a bit moist upon opening, so a day open to dry out is adviseable.It burned cool and the flavor was remarkable.A true all day english.The only caveat is that it may be a bit light for those who favor an ultra strong,latakia laden blend.However,put any prejudices aside and give this one a try.You'll be happy that you did! ==Highest Possible Kudos== prep

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarLaw Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarLaw (85)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

I love Balkan Saseini. Rich and full-bodied. A classic full English. Lots of smoky Latakia, spicy Orientals and a nice rounding out from the Virginias. Clearly the focus is on the Latakia and Orientals and the Virginia is just there for balance.

The aroma is wonderful (if you like Latakia). Big emphasis on Latakia here.

The cut is excellent. Easy to pack, light and keep lit. Burns to a clean white ash.

If you like English blends, particularly 965 (my no. 1 favorite), then I think you will really enjoy Balkan Sasieni.

Bottom line: This and Dunhill 965 is what Holmes smoked. I don't care what the book says.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Nojoqui Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nojoqui (28)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

It's been years since I smoked The Balkan Sobranie Original Mixture. It was a fixture in my household growing up. My dad pooh-poohed it, while my brother smoked the house down with the stuff. My dad would occasionally smoke it, but said it "smelled like burning leaves" when my brother smoked it. I found my niche in Dunhill's "My Mixture 965". However, I really liked, and remember well The Balkan Sobranie Original. I've never smoked the 759, so I offer no comparison to The Balkan Sasieni that this review is all about. It does look, taste, and almost feel like the original. Seems to be a little less consistant in humidity, however. I believe that because it's packed in those awful pouches like drug store tobacco. SHAME!!! The manufacturer needs to get with it and produce 50 gram cans. The first thing I do when buying The Balkan Sasieni is transfer it into a tobacco jar, mix it up, humidify it, then consider smoking it. By doing so, I find a very close simularity to the original Sobranie in all factors. You have to get it out of that pouch!!! You heard me! Do it!!! Enough of that! Anyway, it packs easily (I prefer it in an old Comoy's Billard from the sixties that belonged to my father). It lights easily. I find myself using fewer matches with this tobacco than almost all others. Probably because I transfer it into a jar! Again, do it immediately on opening it! I won't go into all of the comparisons with the original Sobranie blend as far as the nuances and the like. Too many others have done this. There are so many shapes and brands of pipes out there to make such statements for me whould be difficult. Maybe it's that Comoy's Billard for me. That pipe was used most often for Danish, Dutch, and Scottish blends. I had to clean it well. Now, the two are an inseparatable match. No other tobacco touches that pipe. However, let me say that I like this tobacco just as well in a Peterson Emerald Lovat. Another winner. It's your choice, in any case. All in all, I don't think anybody could go wrong with this tobacco unless they were a beginner to English blends. I can only say that for me it rivals my all time favorite, Dunhill's "My Mixture 965". Both leave me with white ash, a disappointment that I've finished that bowl, and a wonderful taste that lingers for hours. Let's hope this stuff doesn't disappear like The Balkan Sobranie. This is another of those Best of the Best tobaccos, as far as I'm concerned. It just needs to be sold in 50 gram tins, not those crappy pouches!!!!

UPDATE: I was given a sample of Peter Stokkebye's "Balkan Supreme" via Guy and Jackie Wallace at Affordable Pipes. This stuff, as far as I can figure, IS "Balkan Sasieni". Should you have a craving, they are there to help you obtain this in bulk.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

4 Dot Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
4 Dot (4)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Winter '04: Notes on Sasieni..

I suppose, that as many pipe smokers may have done, I have followed a progression. My first tobaccos were of the Amphora, Sail, Borkum Riff, Middleton's' ilk. Then, after a pause of some years, to the Englishes from Dunhill, Rattray, McClelland and others. A few years ago I had come across the Balkan Sasieni Blend packaged in a 200gram tin. The package art bore strong resemblance to that of the Balkan Sobranie Tinned Cigarettes that I enjoyed in the late sixties, so I had to give it a try.

I find, as with most every tinned tobacco, that it should be allowed to dry a bit before smoking. This tobacco conducts itself as a polished gentleman. Packing is easy, lighting and maintaining the light is a snap. The ash is pale and powdery, rather non-caking, and will readily smoke to the very bottom of the bowl. Relights, after some minutes or some hours are a joy! I don't know how to explain it, other than to say that relights result in bursts of full flavor, which I haven't experienced in any other tobacco.

The first bowl, or the first dozen bowls, held my attention and toyed with my senses! Is it Spicy? Salty? Sweet? Tart? Nutty? Meaty? The fact is that the subtle shifts of flavor within each pipe full are varied but always conveyed with an underlying zest and spice?quite like the Balkan Sobranie (see same).

I realized that I would always like to have Sasieni on hand and had made a habit of picking up a few tins (200g/7oz.) at the local shop. Then panic! The U.S. Distributor, James B. Russell Inc. went out of business. I went without any for a few months until I found a shop in Missouri that had a supply in bulk?.bought it?just under five pounds.

In reading another's review (with regard to current supply status of Sasieni), I emailed Stokkebye, in an attempt to secure future supply of this prized blend. After all, the Balkan Sasieni is "Made In Denmark". I asked Stokkebye if they had this or a similar Balkan Blend. Their response was that they had similar blends that I might like " PS-52 Proper English" and "My Own Blend 7000". They added: "You will see Sasieni back on the market in the spring as well"

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pop-pop's pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pop-pop's pipe (96)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

A real english. Good after a big meal. Nice sensation on the throat. Naturally sweet,dry,and cool. It has less latakia than sobranie did. It's also a notch milder than its predecessor. Folks who are accostomed with heavyweight englishes might be dissapointed with this blend due to the lack of throatyness and potency. Fans of mild or medium englishes will like this however. I think this is a good english for the aromatic or burley smoker who is thinking about going to the next level to get started on. It's strength in my opinion is that of a strong burley or kentucky. This blend is comparable with Dunhills mild and medium Standards lying somewhere in between. All in all it is a good blend I just prefer heavier englishes, but Ill smoke this when I don't want the full power punch of 965 or nightcap.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pmonroeb Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pmonroeb (92)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Full Strong

Still one of my regulars, but difficult to find now that the importer has gone out of business. The nice lady at http://www.tobaccomkt.com tells me that this was actually blended by Peter Stokkebye and that since the importer owned the rights to the name Balkan Sasieni, that Stokkebye is making the same thing sold as a bulk called Balkan Supreme under the Stokkebye label. I have tried it and to the best of my taste it is the same as Balkan Sasieni.

I never smoked the Balkan Sobranie Original Mixture very often when it was available, preferring the so-called Luxury 759 Mixture. I always liked the Original Mixture, but only bought it when I could not get 759 or Crown Achievement.

The Balkan Sasieni is not noticeably different from my memories of the Original Mixture, in fact, it may well be exactly the same as the Sobranie. It has been at least 15 years since I had the Sobranie version.

Balkan Sasieni is a very good Balkan. It is well blended and there are very few stems in the mix. Once it is dried a little, it packs and burns well. It is a strong flavor that will only appeal to latakia lovers.

I wish that the packaging was different. Sobranie went to the vacuum sealed pouches late in its run and these pouches are not as reliable as tins. It is not uncommon for these pouches to lose their seal and ruin the tobacco.

Originally I had rated this 3 out of 4, but I have revised that to 4 stars. I just finished smoking a bowl in a truly huge Ser Jacopo (a 3 hour pipe) and was rewarded with a truly satisfying smoking experience. The flavor builds very nicely to excellent heights of good Balkan taste with no bite, no throat harshness and no tongue burn. While I have a variety of blends in my primary rotation, I will be keeping Balkan Saieni on hand.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JohnnyFlake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JohnnyFlake (17)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

(October, 2003)This is a thin ribbon cut tobacco which is very dark in color, almost solid black. The aroma is that of a typically strong english, very pungent and musty (latakia) with some hints of sweetness (orientals and virginias). This is too moist out of the pouch for my taste, so I always allow it to air out & dry for several hours. It's been so long since I've smoked any Balkan Sobranie that I will not even atempt to compare them. The Sasieni packs easily and after drying out, fires up easily as well. At first, the flavor is almost pure latakia, smooth, nutty and musty. The room note is heavy and strong. After awhile, about a third of the bowl, the orientals and virginias start to kick in and the flavor profile changes from a heavy english to that of a med/heavy balkan. There is an interesting complexity to this blend and you should smoke it slowly but not too slowly, to bring out the array of flavors it offers. As one would expect this tobaccy gets richer and stronger as you smoke the bowl down. By the final third this tobacco becomes a full flavored balkan, spicy, tangy and nutty. Although not a killer, this tobacco also provides a hefty amount of nicotine. 4 1/2 out of 5 Flakes & Highly Recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Gae Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gae (46)
★★★★
Strong Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

16th-Sep-2003. The Balkan Sasieni,I'm enjoying at the moment,has been aged for 5 Year's.It's the closest tobacco,I have found,to taste like Balkan Sobranie!What Balkan Sasieni taste's like,without any age(I Don't Know) One thing,I'm sure about is this,I'll definitely be buying more.And if it's to fresh,I will cellar it.It lights easy,smoke's superbly & has that same slight saltiness to it,just like the legendary Balkan Sobranie.Plus the superb textured flavour's,if not reushed.Leaves a clean white ash,& smoke's dry. If Balkan Sobranie is rated 10 out of 10.Then this deserves 91/2 out of 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bootknife Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bootknife (17)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Strong

What can I say, I have put off reviewing this for some time just because of the problems with moisture buildup. I can't find that perfect draw rate obviously needed for this blend.

However, I still return to it for the Taste and Aroma. It does have a sour component frome time to time but even this is enjoyable. The creamy spiciness is wonderful.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Archmage Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Archmage (2)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

I?m fairly new to pipe smoking and have much to try. However, I know what I like, and I like Balkan Sasieni.

I started out with the cheap drugstore stuff, and while I found the vanillas were tolerable (and Captain Black Royal, the blue one) I wasn?t really satisfied.

After my father passed away my mom saw my pipes and gave me Dad?s old humidor, which was the gift she had given him on their first anniversary years before I was born. I had stared at the thing my whole life never realizing what it was! I opened it up and noticed a bit of residue, maybe a thimble?s worth inside. I sniffed it? Wow! This had to be the good stuff I instinctively knew existed but didn?t know where to find.

I asked her what it was and she said, ?Balkan-something.? To the Internet I flew, and after a few days of research figured out that it must have been Balkan Sobranie. The closest thing today is supposedly Balkan Sasieni, so I went to Cousin?s Cigar in Cleveland Ohio and bought some.

All I can now say is that I love English blends. I wish I had started there, and maybe more people should. Balkan Sasieni didn?t bite me, and getting bitten was a problem of mine. I eventually tried Dunhill 965 but Balkan Sasieni just plain beats it. I think it smells like leather and barbeque sauce when you sniff the container. Its flavor is more layered, so with each puff you get to the next level of taste. I first noticed nicotine with this blend, something I?d never consciously noted before (it wasn?t overwhelming, just noticeable). This may be because I like Balkan Sasieni so much I actually pack a large pipe full and finish it, not something I often did before. I?m not saying it?s terribly strong, but it seems stronger than the aromatics I?ve tried.

If any fellow young guys are reading this, don?t be scared by anyone who tells you that English blends aren?t for beginners. I wish I would have tried it sooner. My favorite thus far is Balkan Sasieni, which I found gentler and tastier than 965.

You were onto something Dad! If only we would have talked about this?

PS: Don't give my rating for the Room Note too much credit. I only smoke outside, so it's just a guess.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1005)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I only recently tried Balkan Sasieni because I am not a big fan of Balkan blends and so it wasn't on my immediate "must try" list.

It compares to some extent with Dunhill's Aperitif and 965 in that you will taste the lighter Orientals more than the Latakia. While not as sweet as Aperitif due to a bit more Latakia being in the blend, it is certainly sweeter than 965.

I was able to smoke back to back bowls of Sasieni, which is not usual for me and "English" type blends -- if this is an English. And I thought it burned rather hot if puffed too rapidly.

If you like Oriental, Turkish, Latakia types, here you go. I've certainly had worse.

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Willy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Willy (75)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I think BriarNorth most eloquently says it all. I might add only that comparable to Sobranie, the Sasieni seems a bit more refined and less thick or heavy. There is an airiness/zest to Sasieni that I really enjoy, in the pouch and in the taste, yet the blend has substance. The pouch aroma is soft but full and very pleasant as is the taste. Musty and smoky with a nutty flavor, Sasieni smokes cool and dry. There is a pleasant tang with spice notes here and there throughout the bowl. Very tasty. IMO, FWIW, this is amongst the better English blends around today. Stands tall on its own merits and could be an all-dayer for one who enjoys English/Balkan blends. Works for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarNorth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarNorth (49)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

This is a very well-rounded blend. The latakia is not overwhelming, the orientals provide some spice and the virginias are deliciously sweet and clearly of good quality. These elements play off one another throughout the bowl with no one feature dominating the other. The tobacco packed and lit well, did not bite and smoked clean to a grey ash in a variety of pipes. This is a pleasure to smoke.

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Rocket Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rocket (7)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

A decent tobacco blend for the price. If you like the flavor produced from a good balkan blend, this tobacco will not disappoint. But if you're trying to make comparisons to Balkan Sobranie...please....this product falls far short. Because Balkan Sobranie is no longer available, your search for a acceptable brand may lead you here. Let me say right up front....this blend does have some attractive qualities. The balkan (oriental) flavor is evident, and it definitely comes through for a very satifying smoke. I personally liked the ribbon cut which makes for an easy pack and light that smokes cleanly right through to the bottom with a minimum of relights. This blend has absolutely no bite....which is another big plus. If you're looking for a respectable "all day" tobacco.....this is one of several good choices.

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dangpipes Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dangpipes (22)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I smoked Balkan Sobranie many years ago and remember it to have been a solid, perhaps strong Latakia blend. This is a very fine improvement on that memory. The flavors are still solid but there is a finese that was lacking in its predecessor.

The tobacco has a strong Latakia component right off, which sets the tone for the ensuing smoke. It smokes cool and smooth throughout, with a sharp, nutty twang from the first light.

I find that tobaccos go through stages of appreciation, from first impression, to comparisons with similar blends to the refined judgement of experience over time and many smokings. This is an invariably good smoke.

My first impressions, as stated above was the sharp Latakia which was consistent from the pouch as well as in the pipe.

Compared to others - I have recently smoked several of the Dunhill blends, including 965, Durbar, London Blend and Early Morning Mixture, as well as Frog Morton on the Bayou. The Balkan Sasieni is clearly the purest expression of an English style Latakia blend. These others have their merits, but the Balkan Sasieni does not triffle with subtlty.

Over time - the tobacco is every bit a pleasing each and every time I smoke it.

This is a pleasure to smoke. It wears its stripes clearly on its arm but smokes coolly and comes across with a nice finese.

Enjoy!

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sea otter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sea otter (3)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I have just smoked a bowl of Balkan Sobranie as well as a bowl of Balkan Sasieni and offer the following comparison. The Balkan Sobranie was bought in 1980, Balkan Sasieni was purchased on 1/4/03. The tin seal on the Sobranie was broken one week ago, the Sasieni was opened on 1/4/03. Both tobaccos are cut equally finely as ribbon. The Sobranie has more dark tobaccos with perhaps 5-10% lighter tobacco. The Sasieni is about 30% lighter tobacco, 70% dark. The most significant difference in the opening aroma. The Sobranie has an inimitable tart-sweet grace note that I have encoutered nowhere else. Could this be due to Yenidje leaf in the Sobranie? This grace note is not detectable in the Sasieni. The first few puffs of the Sasieni are slightly harsher than the Sobranie but with continued puffing both tobaccos are comparably smooth with a bit of tongue bite. This may be due to the Sasieni being less aged in the package than the Sobranie. If I were to rate Sobranie as 10/10, I would then rate Sasieni as 8/10.

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Bona Fides Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bona Fides (4)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Let me begin with the sometime repeated caveat: I have not tried Balkan Sobranie, so this is not a comparison to that esteemed blend.

The tobacco is ribbon cut, with the color of the tobacco being mostly black and some brown. The pouch aroma is musty latakia with a tinge of sweet virginia. I know that there are orientals lurking in the blend, however, I cannot detect them in the pouch aroma.

The tobacco lights easily, with the usual two match light. The flavor is very good. The latakia and virginia make their presence known at the very beginning, whereas the the orientals seem to play in the background, somewhat muted but nonetheless there. The smoke was very enjoyable until near the end of the bowl, where a little bitterness comes through. This has occurred everytime in several different pipes. This is a good tobacco that I recommend. I wonder what the original Sobranie was like!?

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

I never had the pleasure of smoking any of the Balkan Sobranie blends, so I am in no position to make comparisons between those blends and Balkan Sasieni. I can, however, recommend this blend without hesitation.

I've typically favoured Virginia blends with a light casing (not outright aromatics, mind you), but Balkan Sasieni is a real treat indeed. The first time I tried it a long time ago, I didn't care for it at all, but further experience demonstrated that the hype surrounding this blend is well-founded. The aroma and flavour, whilst quite strong compared to what I am accustomed, are enticing. The only problem I have with it is that my tobacconist only sells it in the pouches and not in bulk.

If I had to choose only two blends with which to satisfy myself, this would definitely be one of them!

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howie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
howie (46)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

It is almost impossible to smoke this without comparing it to Balkan Sobranie. However, I will do my best to review it on its own merits.

Balkan Sasieni is a ribbon cut balkan blend available in 50g packages, 200g tins, and bulk. My sample was bulk. Moisture level was acceptable and it dries readily if left out to air. The blend itself is medium to dark leaf in a ribbon cut that packs easily.

Being an oriental based balkan, the sweetness level is fairly low and the emphasis is on spicy and nutty flavors, as well as the aromas associated with the tobacco, including the substantial latakia content. I found that this had very good smoking characteristics and a complexity that developed nicely in the bottom half of the bowl, particularly after letting sit for a while. The complexity is different than in blends with a higher sugar content, as it is due to the subtler spicy elements rather than the stoving of the VAs in the bowl.

This is a very nice balkan in its own right and makes for an enjoyable smoke when a the palate calls for a drier, rather than sweeter, tobacco.

October 2002

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Bigdadz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bigdadz (30)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Very Strong

It seems that the majority of the reviewers who have tried this blend expected a replica of Balkan Sobranie. Sasieni claims to have recreated the original Balkan mixture, so I suppose it's only natural to compare it to its predecessor.

Unfortunately I have never tried the legendary Sobranie. This may in fact rid me of the biases that have discredited Sasieni as being inferior.

The blend is composed of high quality dark tobacco cut at a fine texture, easy to fill in most pipes and burns well to a fine ash. The flavour is richer in latakia and orientals, which creates a spicy woodsy flavour that I enjoy very much. As with most tobaccos, this one is best enjoyed when smoked slowly.

All in all, an excellent blend with a complexity and sophistication that can be compared to a fine Cuban cigar. Although, the 25 CN $ I paid for the 50 gram pouch is far too much, I would most definitely try it again if encountered at a more reasonable price. 3 stars!

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KEF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
KEF (13)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Tolerable

This seems a pretty straight forward latakia/oriental english blend. Darker ribbon cut for the most part, with some blackish smaller cut mixed in. Stronger pouch aroma. Packs and lights well. Truly a balkan taste on lighting, with lots of smooth tasting smoke and a nice sweet & sour flavor. I found as it smoked down it became a bit sharper, but the flavor faded a bit, and by the bottom of the bowl I found it bitey. Burns well without too much moisture. Unfortunately, I'm wrting this review after smoking some 6 year old Balkan Sobranie, and I find that the Sasieni, while similar, simply does not have the qualities of the Sobranie. 5.5 of 10. - Kelly

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lustra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lustra (170)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

For me, the sometimes wonderful taste of Balkan Sasieni is not worth its awful sourness and tendency to bite. These days, I smoke Sasieni only as a constituent of the Oscuro blend, created by the Barcelona Pipe Club, which is one- half Sasieni and one-half MacBaren Scottish Mixture. When I'm in the mood for a Balkan, I smoke Greg Pease's Caravan, which is a wonderfully full smoke without Sasieni's problems.

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JSB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JSB (6)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Tolerable

This tobacco came as a free sample with my last tobacco order so I figured I had nothing to lose. They sent me enough for about four bowls but two was enough for me, the only good thing I found with this tobacco was the pouch aroma, it had a nice latakia leather smell but after that it was all down hill, in a word ?bland- I could find very little taste or aroma to keep me interested

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Eulenburg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eulenburg (193)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

I remember smoking the noted Sobranie in the late 1970's. I always found it a little bloated. The Turkish would sit a bit inertly on the latakia, like grey dust on a black cushion.

Sasieni is far brisker; Turkish and latakia interact with much more zest. Nuttiness and smokiness build to a delicious height in the last third of the bowl. This is a more sec experience than Sobranie, and twice as enlivening.

Balkan Sasieni is the best tobacco news I've had in years!

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farndog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
farndog (22)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong

There has always been much discussion as to whether Balkan Sasieni was better, worse, or the same as the famed Balkan Sobraine. While it has been some time since I have tried Sobraine, I don't recall it being any finer than the Balkan Sasieni of today. Upon opening the pouch/tin one is greeted with a blend of mostly dark tobacco with some lighter strands mixed in (60%-40%). The aroma is that of a classic English blend - latakia first, orientals second, and if you mix it around the Virginias will appear. Balkan Sasieni is cut in ribbon fairly fine, and will pack into most pipes easily. This tobacco lights pretty easily after a charring light, and stays lit. There is nothing about Balkan Sasieni that sticks out, which, IMO, makes it a great English blend. It is complex, but remains easy to enjoy. The room aroma can be a little strong to those not used to a fuller English blend, and this sneaky devil can sneak up on you in the nicotine department - maybe just me as I load Sasieni up in a huge OomPaul. Balkan Sasieni is a great tobacco in it's own right, no matter if it looks like Sobraine of yore, or not. A solid recommendation.

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