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The "good ol' boys" from the Tennessee hills know how to have a good time and live life to its fullest. They enjoy good music, partial to the Nashville Sound, huntin', fishin', car racing and pretty women. But they also enjoy a pipe filled with good tobacco while enjoying a cold beverage at their favorite joint, The Rusty Hinge Bar and Grille. The old fella who runs the Rusty Hinge came up with this blend back in the days when Hank was king of the jukebox. It's been a house favorite ever since! An all day Virginia/Perique with just the right amount of spicy Louisiana Perique.

BrandTavern Tobacco Co.
Blend TypeVirginia/Perique
ContentsPerique, Virginia
FlavoringFloral Essences
CutBroken Flake
Packaging50g Tin
ProductionNo longer in production
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Extremely Mild
Room Note
Pleasant, Pleasant to Tolerable
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SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (525)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The now defunct Tavern Tobacco had a number of blends that were repackaged mass marketed blends that were renamed for Tavern. As an example, Tavern’s Laurel Flake was actually Samuel Gawith’s St. James Flake (I confirmed this directly from SG). Rusty Hinge Flake was made by Gawith Hoggarth, and having smoked two tins of it, my best guess would be that this is Gawith Hoggarth’s Louisiana Flake. My tins were purchased from 2005. Father time had treated this blend well. Now well aged, Rusty Hinge Flake offers little to no flavor that would be common to Lakeland style blends. While there is some sugar crystals visible on the flakes, I don’t find this to be as sweet as a ten year old Laurel Flake. RHF is very smooth and the flavor is straight forward offering little complexity. With that said, the harmony of the component tobaccos is really well done. RHF doesn’t bite, even when pushed. The subtle sweetness adds to the blend’s appeal. I broke the flakes up into smaller pieces with a little fully rubbed out at the top of the bowl. I got the best flavor by smoking this blend in a cob.

Age When Smoked: 10 years

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JB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JB (42)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

This tobacco is similar to GLP's Stonehenge, so if you liked Stonehenge, you will likely dig Rusty Hinge. It's not a dead ringer, but certainly in the same ballpark. I like this tobacco quite a bit, but the earlier comment about letting it dry out for a time before smoking it is accurate. My only complaint is that the good folks at Knoxville should take the time to put a label on each tin, even if you buy it in bulk to get the discount. Otherwise, you get plain white tins.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

I picked some of this stuff up at the Kansas City show and must say it's not to bad. Not as sophisticated as 633, Escudo, or LGF, then again I'm not sure it was ever meant to be. This is a simple, straight forward flake that kind of reminds me a bit of a cross between Haddo's (stronger) and 2015 (weaker). Perhaps not polished, but nonetheless very tasty and good with a cold beer. Curiously this was offered along with some other new blends, most noticeably a tonquin flavored Va flake by Samuel Gawith known as Grey Man Flake. For some reason however I can't find it on the Knox website, nor any other for that matter. Perhaps the best of the new tobaccos I have tried lately, try it if you can find it.

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Ranger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ranger (59)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Another fine tobacco from the Tavern label. Tasty broken flakes that packed easily, needing very little dry time for an smooth smoke. I thought there was a whiff of a topping such as chocolate (though very, very mild). Whatever it is, my tin was quickly smoked and thoroughly enjoyed. I found the Perique to be blended nicely with the Virginias.

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NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (273)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Another of my trials from Knox Cigar in TN but this one is only available from them tinned. The dark flakes were partially rubbed out and as with others in this line, moister than my ideal when the tin was opened. Based on my prior experiences, I believe some drying improved the lighting and burning rate and no relights were usually needed and a cool smoke resulted. This blend is made by G & H but I found no soapy, Lakeland taste. They kicked the Perique up a notch from their Samuel Gawith blended Laurel Flake to the point that the VA influence is hardly evident. "Just the right amount" as indicated in their description is relative to the smoker. Although not a strong tobacco, I found this blend too heavy with Perique for an all day smoke and greater than McClelland 2015 which remains one of my favorites of this group along with Caledonian 499 and Reiner's Long Golden.

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