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A blend to bring back great memories. A traditional American mixture of Pressed Burley and steam-toasted Red Virginia which has a nutty/toasty flavor and a nice cool burn. Reminiscent of many of the old foil-pouch blends that Grandpa and his friends used to smoke. This is one for the whole day, everyday.

BrandHearth & Home
Blended ByRuss Ouellette
Manufactured ByPipes & Cigars
Blend TypeBurley Based
ContentsBurley, Virginia
FlavoringNone
CutRibbon
Packaging1.5oz Tin, 8oz Tin, Bulk
CountryUS
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
PipesAndCigars
Product Image
Strength
Mild to Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Mild to Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 1 Users

2.4
26 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
6
3 star:
4
2 star:
11
1 star:
5
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fr_tom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fr_tom (154)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is my favorite from Pipes and Cigars. It is a tasty burley/virginia mix that I always go back to after experimenting with something else. It is not fancy and is not likely to impress your friends, but sometimes you are not trying to impress anyone and just want a great smoke.

It has some sweet from the Virginia and the nutty burley in a very satisfying and balanced blend. There is no topping that I can discern, and there is enough flavor that I don't puff too fast. It is always a slow, cool smoke for me that doesn't require a lot of attention

Edit: I was looking trough some of my reviews to see if I needed to adjust any of them. I am puzzled by some of the bad reviews of Old Companion, but I guess we all have different taste buds. This is hands down my "goto" smoke, and I go through a lot of it. I checked my P&C order history, and I have smoked 15+ lbs of OC. If it were possible to rate this higher than 4, I would do it.

7 people found this review helpful.

bent-1 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bent-1 (32)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

SopwithCamel nailed my thoughts exactly. Ready to smoke right out of the pouch. A nice smoke, sip it and enjoy the cruise. This blend leaves the palate clean & ready for any follow up or a repeat bowl. Another for the cellar.

2 people found this review helpful.

rkzenrage Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rkzenrage (17)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

Comforting. It reminds me of smells from my grandfather and uncles. The flavors are subtle yet pervasive. This and a favorite book or a few hours in my shop make for a wonderful afternoon. The Va's sweet smoothed-out perfectly by the nutty burly that builds nicely throughout the bowl is just right. I like that it is a bit dry, keeps me humble, like this blend. Something I do not plan to smoke every day, nor do I plan to do without. Namaste' Robert

2 people found this review helpful.

smokey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
smokey (120)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Pleasant to Tolerable

There are a lot of good burley blends on the market, which makes for a lot of choices for a burley lover like me. Old Companion has two characteristics that I find very appealing. It has a wonderful toasted nutty taste that delights my palate and it burns very cool. Even with over-enthusiastic puffing, it's hard to overheat the pipe. O/C has a good burn that needs a minimum of relights and burns down to a light gray ash. This one will leave you craving another bowl and would make a good all day smoke. One other good point is its' price; credit should go to pipes and cigars for keeping it at a reasonable level. Great flavor, cool burn, and good pricing all add up to four stars. Good job, Russ!

2 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (578)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Picked this up in a trade and was intrigued. The first thing I noticed is the size of the tin - very large for a 50 gram tin. I expected a "fluffy" tobacco and that's what I got. That always makes for an interesting load! And interestingly, my first snoot of the tin note presented a McClellands-like silage tang and I thought "Oh goodness, the McClellands Ketchup Brigade is going to have a field day with this one!". However, this smell went away literally seconds after the air hit it. I'm now not sure it was ever there. As it turns out, I got a tin of McC's Sophisticate in the same trade and I may have subconsciously thought I was going to open that one instead. This gives me some insight into how the old "ketchup" thing has perpetuated! :)

The taste was a source of consternation. For the first few bowls, it took almost 2/3 before I got much flavor of any kind except an initial Granger-like plasticity. Unless cardboard is a flavor. The bottom 1/3 produced some nutty and mildly sweet tones. I tried hydrating it a little which was even more disastrous so I dried it out a little more. This helped the flavor develop somewhat but it never got terribly interesting. And there was a tongue singe just waiting to happen that I had to constantly fight off by puffing overly slowly. Then again, slow is the ticket if you want any flavor from this one. Slow and dry but not too dry. It does have an "old timey" taste and may have nailed the profile of some of those old, long gone OTC's. It did taste a bit like Carter Hall but didn't have CH's odd casing.

Not a bad blend but not something I'll likely smoke again. Try it as a sidebar to blends like GLP Cumberland or C&D's Burley Straight. Interesting but a bit perplexing.

1 person found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (662)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This tobacco needs to be hydrated first or you won't get much flavor from it. Once moistened a little, it tastes a little like a lighter version of Prince Albert without the heavy casing. The sweet flavor is light and very pleasant to the tongue and to those who smell it. It can burn hot if you don't sip it, which is often the case with this type of blend. I prefer a little more heft in tobaccos of this genre, but as it is, it's a mild all day smoke that doesn't leave the sometimes strong-cased aftertaste that others impose on you. The tobacco used is quality stuff and I'd much rather give it 2 and half stars than the two I give it, if only the taste was a little stronger. But if you want a light, mild sweet blend of this type, it's worth a try. It does make a nice last the day smoke, too, and I seem to enjoy it more then.

1 person found this review helpful.

loosewatches Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
loosewatches (108)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Now here is an American smoke. There is much debate about classification. Is an English that which has Latakia, but less oriental. Or is an English simply an 'unflavored' smoke? (My favorite English flakes have a casing, no doubt.)

Must an American blend be sopped in cherry? Ha! I tell you, here is a fine American blend. It is not exactly my kind of smoke, but that's ok. I'm not my kind of smoke either.

The Virginias here, of which I am the world's expert, are nice. They are very much, as the blurb says, toasty. Not toasted in a McClelland tangly sort of way, but just just enough to get the unsweetened bitters out. Very much a C&D flavor profile here, but with the legendary Mr Ouellette's skills at work. ( C&D is also of deserved legend.)

But, I progress; I do believe I am a child of the steam cooked, slightly (or more) sweetened, and stronger flavored English products. By this I mean not "English" with Buttloads of Latakia, but tobacco as the English people like them-

Nothing wrong with this American blend, I just proffer different.

1 person found this review helpful.

SopwithCamel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SopwithCamel (255)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

I love Burley/Virginia blends, and this is about as nice as they get. This arrived at the perfect moisture level. The short ribbons and granulated flakes pack like a dream. I can usually light this with one match. The flavor of this is sweet, almost maple sweet, but never cloying. There may be a bit of licorice as well.

The low humidity and fine cut make it essential to sip this blend gently to get the most out of it. It can burn hot, but sipped deliberately and gently, this is a very satisfying smoke. The tobacco used is top quality. It leaves a clean, sweet taste on my palette. The blend turns sweeter at the bottom of the bowl, and the pipe heel is clean and dry. The room note is pure pipe tobacco goodness. This would make a great blending tobac, and is excellent on its own.

This blend has enough Virginia in it, where if you don't smoke gently and slowly, you will pay for your impatience. You just can't pull on this like you are smoking black Cavendish! However, it is this same Virginia that gives you the exquisite, roasted, toasted, non -syrupy sweetness of the blend. You can't rush this one.

1 person found this review helpful.

Mr. Dottle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Dottle (162)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The description of Old Companion is right on the mark! This is a wonderful, smooth, cool burning/non-biting and nutty tasting blend that should appeal to even the most discriminating smoker. Old Companion is a must have blend for all burley lovers and a must try blend for all others?????.great flavor at a great price.

A cigarette is to be smoked. A cigar is to be enjoyed. A pipe is to be savored.

I rate this tobacco 9.8 out of 10.

1 person found this review helpful.

DUPE.1512 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DUPE.1512 (196)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Another blend in the "Hearth and Home Series" by Russ Ouellette available at pipesandcigars.com in bulk. This is a blend that holds true to its description. Simply put this is toasty-nutty goodness akin to the blends of days long gone. Very similar in quality to the Classical rough cut American blends like Granger and Blue Boar yet still having plenty of its own merits. For an all day smoke it's hard to do any better than this.

4 solid Stars!

1 person found this review helpful.

Jacinto Cupboard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jacinto Cupboard (67)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

A short ribbon cut of mostly mid, caramel, browns. There is a very mild cocoa and anise tin note.

This tobacco packs and burns a treat. It produces a nice volume of creamy smoke.

Tends to burn on the hot side and can bite even when puffed gently. There is also some bitterness as the bowl progresses. This is a no nonsense simple tobacco that will cause the smoker no real problems at all. Not much to offer on the upside however.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

manno Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
manno (37)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I currently have about 12 lbs. of P&C blending tobaccos on hand and am not sure if that would be enough to rescue the 7 ozs. of Old Companion that I unfortunately now possess in a newly opened tin. Utterly pointless weed when compared against most anything, but especially P&C's own exceptional burley and virginia offerings. Cardboard? Cheap cigarettes? Old hay? Newspaper (coupon inserts I'm guessing)? It numbs my thought processes to think that this comes from the same house as the like-priced Marble and Anniversary Kakes, VA Spice, Scotty's Old Red, Ambassador, Daybreak, Sunjammer, etc. If this truly exemplifies and trumpets the backbone of America (as alluded to on the tin notes and as stated by some reviewers below), then I'm exchanging my passport for an EC resident's visa.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Not the greatest of Burley blends, but not the worst either. I do agree with my fellow reviewers that it does produce some tongue bite if not puffed slowly. Not much in the way of flavor, just a plain simple uncased blend. Thats about it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

rramstad Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rramstad (115)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have to echo the last few posters. It's not bad stuff, but there are definitely OTC burley blends that are better. I'd smoke Carter Hall over this, same with Prince Albert. I get a bit of tongue bite from this, and get none by comparison from the OTC I mentioned. Something odd is going on with either the tobacco selection, the method of processing, or both. Generally I have trouble with bright VA and that is probably the issue here.

UPDATE Definitely a light, acrid smoke which gives me a bit of tongue bite. Flavor is pleasant, but nothing special. I can't give this two stars when I give most MacBaren blends one star, and much like them, it bites me and doesn't have a lot of flavor

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Captain Pete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Captain Pete (83)
★☆☆☆
Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable

Smokes hot; tastes hot; flavors are near non existent; and it smells kind of like an arm pit when lit. I'll take any number of drugstore burleys over this any day.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tiepolo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tiepolo (40)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Medium Strong

Well, I tried and tried but it didn't happen for me. It is very strange: the first third of the bowl I always find it great. And then it starts: pipe burning hot, tongue bite and bitter towards the end. I am smoking this sample on and off for 10 months and tried drying, packing light etc. Concerning the bite it is strange because I usually smoke straight VAs and am quite immune to tongue bite. It gets also some nasty comments for the room note. Looks like quality tobacco, so it is for the burley clan to try and decide.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bighitter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bighitter (37)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

(2nd update) I'll take it as is and love it. I don't know what took me so long to come around to this conclusion. I think personally, that it was my foray into drugstore blends such as Prince Albert and Half and Half and Carter Hall that made me come back to this and say, well it really blows all those away and has similar flavor notes actually. Although there may be some slight casing that imparts a cinnamony taste almost, I can taste Burleys mostly coming out of this. Of course, I'm not otherwise familiar with steam-toasted VAs so it might be those. I really just left this in a plastic bag, abandoned for months at a time. It's gotten pretty dang dry, but it smokes really well that's for sure. And tastes better than before, I think, unless that's just my palate playing catch up. So that's my three takes on this one. How completely confusing and probably worthless to anyone reading this. But such is my experience.

(update) Well, I'm not completely sure, but after giving it a break for a couple of months, and coming back to this, I kind of like it now enough to increase its rating. I've also lately been mixing it with more Virginias such as McClelland's 2035 and 5100. But, I've learned basically that burley's not a bad thing, I don't think. Most of the blends I like I've noticed have some component of Burley in there, so there's definitely something nice in there, still sort of sussing it out here... thanks for your patience...

(old review) Well I suppose I shouldn't be reviewing this one, but I am because it is one of the tobaccos that I really have not enjoyed particularly. This may have something to do with my general aversion to Burleys, which I thought would be balanced out by the Virginias. The problem here is that it leaves a bitter aftertaste. I think I might have to toss the rest of my two ounces out, as I can't seem to bring myself to try it again after giving it several go's and even trying it as a blender. Ah well to each his own.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rafe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rafe (9)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable

I can summarize this blend for you in five short words:

Oooch. Ouch. Eeech. Oach. Oooch. (Okay, four words then.....

Seriously, folks.....I have two other P & C blends that I really enjoy, so I know Scott Benedett, Russ Oulette and company are all about fine, quality tobacco blending. But this one just didn't have my number. Long before the onset of the ferocious tongue bite, I found myself thinking "this is interesting.....a Burley/VA blend that doesn't taste anything like Burley or VA". The flavor and the room note were both as close to cigarette-like as anything I have ever tried; it burned quickly, burned hot, and was rather ashy. As I say, I know pipesandcigars.com can and do offer quality blends, so I'll just chalk this one to up to a case of not agreeing with my palate. Not for me, sorry guys.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

fatherDougal Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fatherDougal (28)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Nothing overly special about this blend. Just the straight tobacco flavour, as described; clean burn and without bite. You could find an OTC blend that would suffice for half the price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Old Companion is a spicy, hot-burning blend with a thin flavor profile. Considerable drying and a light pack help reduce the bite. I won't buy this one again. The Burley used is also tough on my throat toward the end of the bowl.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dualkarnain Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dualkarnain (74)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Very Mild Tolerable

I find this blend to be quite bland. I'm lighting up a second bowl of it as I write this review.

The burley here lacks flavor and the VA is barely compensating.

The smell is unsubstantial.

Unlike a previous reviewer, I'm having no trouble with lighting it. No moisture issues, either.

As I get midbowl, the VA pokes it's head out a little more. However, I'm still left with a very hollow flavor on my tongue.

This would be a good blend to use in saturating a hot-burning VA without detracting from the flavor.

Otherwise, I won't order this again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Meerschaum Man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Meerschaum Man (85)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Yes, smoke this stuff slowly or OC quickly turns into old blowtorch. For the first 3rd of the bowl, I could not taste anything but what seemed like trying to burn wet cardboard. Then, the sweet/nutty flavors of the virginia and burley came thru with noticeable strength for the rest of the smoke leaving a pleasant taste in my tobacco-bite stricken mouth. Cool burning you say? My sample was quite moist and burned like a grass fire. I'm not as experienced with Va/Burl blends as I am with others and that certainly played a role in it. Still, I think this blend bears further exposure and will probably return after same. For now, the caution flag is out.

Meerschaum Man smoking an old CAO Bacchus

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Navy Chief Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Navy Chief (3)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Tolerable

I am having a hard time finding some of the redeming qualities of this blend mentioned in some of the other reviews. This blend was hard to light, hard to keep lit and burned hot no matter what I tried to do. I may finish what I have already from the 2oz I ordered to try this but will not re-order.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Taste Buds Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Taste Buds (138)
★☆☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend was obviously a great disappointment to me. It burned hot and tasted bitter. I must have different taste buds than the other reviewers. I cannot find any redeeming qualities in Old Companion.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

zulujerk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zulujerk (134)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

King Albert, I met your more obnoxious, cheaper son. That guy's a jerk. He's been freeloading in my desk for like six months and won't leave. I don't have the heart to throw the guy out. Just thought you should know.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dougster Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dougster (31)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I am working my way through 8oz of this tobacco, and this is my initial review. I will likely edit this review and adjust my rating as the months go by as I have done with most of my other reviews.

This is a very good regular old tobacco type blend. It is described as an "all-day" smoke, and it could be such. This is why I got this tobacco as well. I have many high powered super tobaks, but a person needs a go-to blend if you want a smoke and you aren't ready for a super-blend.

This is an easy smoking tobacco, with just enough flavor to keep your interest, but not so much to overwhelm or hurt your mouth.

It's good, and for a bulk mostly burley blend, its exceptional. I may upgrade this to highly recommended after I have spent a bit more time with it, but for now, I'd say get a 4oz bag to try if you are making an order with Pipes and Cigars and try it for yourself. You probably won't dislike this tobacco. It does seem to be a good go-to smoke. Perfect for casual puffing as a break between scorching straight virginias and smokey latakia nukes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.