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Nutty Kentucky cube cut burley & rich black cavendish balance the unique aroma & flavor of Louisiana perique, finished with bourbon.

Notes: From the tip of Virginia, C&D's Pennington Gap is an all-American blend with a Southern accent: nutty Kentucky cube cut burley and rich black cavendish balance the unique aroma and flavor of Louisiana perique, finished with bourbon for that touch of southern hospitality.

BrandCornell & Diehl
Blended ByCraig Tarler
Manufactured ByCornell & Diehl
Blend TypeAromatic
ContentsBlack Cavendish, Burley, Perique
FlavoringBourbon
CutCube
Packaging50 grams tin, bulk
CountryUS
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
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Strength
Medium
Flavoring
Medium
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant

Favorite Of 6 Users

3.0
71 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
28
3 star:
27
2 star:
11
1 star:
5
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cajomu Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cajomu (64)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Pennington Gap was a real change of pace for me, as I smoke mostly VaPers and straight Virginias. I was surprised, therefore, to discover how much I enjoyed PG.

Upon opening the tin, I was very pleased with the aroma, which reminded me of Raisinettes (one of my favorite dime-store candies). Being a cube cut, it is easy to pack, although it requires a bit of drying out before it lights easily. Once lit, it burns slowly and evenly, requiring no relights, and leaving a light colored ash at the finish with not goopiness. Despite the casing, PG is a very dry smoke with not even a hint of tongue bite.

PG is a very tasty tobacco throughout the smoke. The Perique predominates for the first third of the bowl. After that, the taste is of a rich, nutty burley (as opposed to the grassiness that I often detect in burley blends) and, toward the end of the bowl, the Cavendish takes over. The casing adds a sweet top note throughout the smoke. However, I wouldn't say that the casing tastes like bourbon -- more like honey and licorice.

A most enjoyable smoke and one that I would recommend to any pipe smoker who likes Perique and sweeter blends. Without a doubt, it is one of the best tobaccos I have smoked in the past year or so. At $4.50/ounce, PG is a fairly expensive pipe tobacco but one that is worth every penny IMO.

Pipe Used: Various briars

Age When Smoked: Recently purchased

Purchased From: JR Cigar

8 people found this review helpful.

Ehrling Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ehrling (108)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I don't identify myself with the aromatic cubed-Burley camp (too many bad memories of the gooey, gloppy, sticky, nasty and repulsive stuff that is better suited to the bottom of a shoe than it is to the inside of a pipe), but this cubed-Burley blend is NOTHING like any of those!! Pennington Gap has some class! I primarily taste the nuttiness of the cubed-Burley along with the bourbon--I believe that the Perique merely darkens the mixture and enriches and emboldens it. (And the taste and aroma of the bourbon actually enhance the overall smoking experience.)

Pennington Gap is probably not for everyone, but if you're looking for something a little bit different--this could be it!

6 people found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (492)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Oh god, This is no good. It suffers the same fate as Haddo's Delight to my tastes. A very good mix of quality leaf that I should enjoy that is doused with a nearly disgusting topping. This is supposed to be a whiskey topping, but doesn't taste like a real whiskey to me. More of one of those whiskey flavored syrups that you would get on a lower quality aromatic.

This one is slightly better than Haddo's, but is still pretty bad to me. I will somewhat recommend it to someone if they like the flavor profile of say, Borkum Riff Whiskey, they may enjoy this one a little more.

4 people found this review helpful.

Sybariten Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sybariten (60)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

This will be a short review.

Tastes bad but does not bite. Never again.

I expect more from Cornell and Diehl, I usually like their burley blends and alcohol toppings, but this is not even close to hitting home.

Similar Blends: Borkum Riff.

3 people found this review helpful.

Peppino Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Peppino (74)
★★★★
Medium Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant

A very interesting tobacco, when you pop the tin it's as though you twisted open the bottle of your favorite bourbon. Right out of the tin you can taste the bourbon coming out. The Perique is there but not over powering this has a nice side stream aroma and very pleasant aroma in general. For some reason it does dry my mouth out a little, I'm guessing it's the flavoring however it has a good flavor that stays through the entire bowl. It packs well and smokes dry producing a nice soft gray ash with minimal re-lights. The flavor seems to get richer and sweeter as you get to the mid bowl and beyond. I feel that this is the Burley and Black Cavendish taking over. Overall a very good smoke!

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Hey, I like this Pennington Gap! It's slightly aromatic (whiskey flavoring perhaps?)and has a pinch of Perique and black leaf (cased cavendish) but the Burley really shines. And, being the nicotine lover that I am, this one really hit the spot, especially in the evenings right after dinner.

I would especially urge those who enjoy their Perique in small doses to give this blend a try - absolutely delightful.

I should also mention that the cube cut of the leaf and the perfect moisture content makes this one of the easiest blends to pack and light that I've ever found.

3 people found this review helpful.

Big Nick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big Nick (74)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

It took a while for me to figure out how to smoke this stuff. There were a couple of issues to contend with. As to not bore you I will just give my conclution. 1)This stuff must be dried out almost to the point of being crunchy or you'll just end up with a goopy blob. 2) Due to the cube cut it must not be firmly packed into the bowl but rather loaded loosly to the top and then slightly tamped. If you tamp it down too hard during loading or smoking it will blob up and not draw well. Using these methods, this is a tasty, quality smoke, semi sweet with some complexity. Geared more to the Burley lover rather than aromatic IMHO, it does have the qualities of both. The Perique is an evident and nice addition. The Bourbon does add to a nice tin fragrance but not much to the taste. It does turn a little sour towards the bottom of the bowl, but don't we all LOL.

2 people found this review helpful.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (729)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

Yikes! I think that the repulsive flavor I get from this is a combo of the Bourbon topping and the dark fruit of the Perique. Both are fine by themselves, but the combo makes me want to gag. It tastes like sweet and sour rotting fruit. The second half of the bowl is somewhat bearable because the topping fades a bit, but the first half is just too much for me. Never mind whatever good qualities the Kentucky may have, I can't get past that rotting fruit.

Mild to medium in body. Medium in taste. Mild to medium in rotting fruit. Burns very well.

Pipe Used: MM Little Devil Cutty, Little Devil Acorn, Marcus

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From: smokingpipes.com

1 person found this review helpful.

Right Wing Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Right Wing Piper (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I found this tin at the back of a shelf at the local tobacconist where it had been for 4 years and one month. Shelf aged tobaccos are always a good find, so I snatched it up. I wasn't sure if it's aromatic qualities would be a turn off for me, but I bought it anyway. Upon opening the tin, the aroma was pungent and alluring. This cube cut blend was lightly topped and was anything but cloying. The Perique was evident and it just smelled inviting. It packs easy and the flavor was that of tobacco with just a hint of whiskey. I don't know if the smoothness can be attributed to age, but this blend was really smooth. It burned cool and was a genuine pleasure to smoke. No goopiness, just a combination of quality tobaccos that really came together well. I can confidently say that I'll purchase it again.

Pipe Used: Tinsky

Age When Smoked: 4 years

Purchased From: Just For Him

1 person found this review helpful.

strongirish Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strongirish (249)
★★★☆
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

When I was given this tin in a trade, it was new and fresh and was to me a little too green and overwhelming on my taste buds. I found it also tended to bite a little. I then put it up sealed tight in my cellar and when browsing the other day found it 6 years later and thought I would retry it. Thus my experience here is on a 6 year old tin. I found it to have matured nicely and am quite enjoying it now.

Upon opening it, the first things I noticed was that it is pressed and cut into small square cube cut very dark, almost black in appearance. It has an aroma of dark peat with a spicy sweetness. Looks and smells very rich. It is somewhat wet and sticky so I let it dry until it no longer sticks to my fingers. Like this it packs and lights up very easy and is great for a slow relaxing smoke. The flavor is a rich, deep, full flavor of burley with the bourbon topping present but not overwhelming and the perique adding it's spicy yet subtle character. It is not sweet really, but it is full on the tongue. Smoked fast it is hot but smoked slow it is very nice and cool. The room note is strong but pleasant and I could smell the perique amongst the sweet burly aroma. It smokes slowly down the pipe leaving very little moisture or dottle in the bottom of the pipe. Mostly produces a steely grey ash with white edges.

I like this blend with age on it and think it will appeal to aromatic smokers and non aromatic smokers alike. Because I found it overwhelming right out of the tin without aging, I am giving three out of four stars.

Pipe Used: briar, meers, cobs.

Age When Smoked: 6 years

Purchased From: given in trade

1 person found this review helpful.

BigSwede Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BigSwede (80)
★★★☆
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

I have a three year old tin that I opened, sampled, didn't care for and put away for the future. Well the future is here and I'm smoking this now.

When first opened the tobacco was quite moist and the bourbon was much in evidence. Now with drying and aging the bourbon has calmed down and the tobacco is much drier, a good thing is this case. Due to the fine cut this almost packs itself and a single match had it off and running. Flavors are varied but a pleasant nutty burley, some raisins (the reviewer who said "dark fruit" hit the nail on the head) the a bit of spice from the perique pretty well sums it up. Takes very little draw to keep going, making it a cool, mild and "quiet" smoke. This will definitely be a regular. though not necessarily everyday, smoke. It is very well prepared and has a taste that's something different. This is one you'll want to try when you can sit and enjoy it.

1 person found this review helpful.

zulujerk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zulujerk (145)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Full Tolerable

Early in my smoking career I bought a tin of Pennington Gap. It was contained in one of those earlier tins with the medal lid. When I broke the thing open it was dried to a crisp. I promptly rehydrated the contents and consumed the tobacco with few complaints. A few years down the road, I decided to resample Pennington Gap.

Things were a little different this time around. The first thing I noticed when opening the tin was the overwhelming scent of booze. This stuff was dripping in it. The tobacco was wet, very wet. I looked to the date on the bottom of the tin, noticing it was a fresh batch, just two weeks old.

I didn't bother to dry my first bowl out before smoking. I loaded up a small Grabow and fiddled with the light. It burned hot and uneven, which immediately indicated that I was too hasty in my desire to smoke the stuff.

The Burley predominates the entire smoke. I couldn't detect the Perique at all, and that goes the same for the Bourbon topping. Pennington Gap is a fairly heavy smoke. It won't kill you, but you will likely enjoy a nice nicotine hit. No real surprises here. If you like Burley blends, like Edgeworth or Prince Albert, you'll feel right at home.

I'll make sure to air out subsequent bowls before smoking.

Three of Four.

1 person found this review helpful.

Ranger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ranger (64)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

This blend was a nice change of pace for me. It burned well with very little drying out, the flavor of tobacco and the backdrop of bourbon consistently called me back for another bowl, and the aroma was very pleasant. I tend to drink ale or bourbon with my smokes, so this worked well. Also matches well with a dark coffee. I liked it slightly above Barbary Coast, but not by much.

1 person found this review helpful.

Patriot Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Patriot (5)
★★★★
Medium Medium Full Pleasant

Because of the reviews that compared Pennington Gap to Barbary Coast (my current fave), I decided to try this blend. Thanks, fellow reviewers! This is a great blend, fuller than BC, but a bit more "touched" by the bourbon casing than BC's brandy. For me, the difference is the same as whether I'm in the mood for brandy or bourbon. Generally I prefer the brandy, but bourbon is nice for a change of pace. I'll have to get more of this!

1 person found this review helpful.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

A very nice surpise! As close to an ideal Aromatic for non-Aromatic smokers as I have tried. The only drawback is the room note is rather strong. Not bad, just strong. A very nice change of pace when I don't have time to load and smoke a flake-type tobacco. I would not have recognized the Burley component as such. It is very smooth and gives the blend some strength without any trace of bitterness. Highly recommended and very tasty too!

1 person found this review helpful.

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

I do not have the time to describe the attributes of this tobacco in detail as others do. However, as I do wish to contribute some feedback, I will simply rate this tobacco on a scale of 1 ?10, including tenths.

Absolutlely a great tobacco with nice flavor and extremely good burning qalitites, no doubt due to its fine cut. I rate this tobacco 9.9 out of 10. You can't miss with this offering from C&D!

1 person found this review helpful.

Blackhorse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blackhorse (90)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

"What a lovely piece of work Craig Tarler has done on this one!" "Pennington Gap taught me a lesson. Don't judge a blend strictly by its ingredients." "Pennington Gap is just great." "I normally don't care for aromatics, but I have to say this is some nice stuff."

With the above comments as a guide I bought two tins of this blend - I'll be buying my next installment in bulk. My normal Astley's, Dunhill's, Pease's, Gawith's, etc. are still my cherished friends...but bowl after bowl in pipe after pipe I really enjoyed this. The term "fun" has been often used in reviews (Fun? Hmm-m-m-m. We'll see about THAT.) Well, I can only say that I agree wholeheartedly. I sipped, I sidestreamed, I puffed like a steam engine going out of the station. It all worked, though severe puffing brought out the gurgle. I didn't care, pipe cleaners are cheap...I was having FUN! The aroma is OK, the burn is easy and complete, the taste is excellent, the SMOKE is sublime. With a nice satellite photo I'm sure you could pick out my smoke stream from 200 miles up! Clouds of the stuff! What a delight! Layers - no. Subtlety - no. Development - no. Back slapping, knee whacking, by gosh I like this stuff fun - you betcha! Buy it. Enjoy it. You'll be glad you did.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Strong Full Pleasant

As I continue on my journey through the world of burley tobaccos I decided to give this blend a whorl. Wow- Tasty! I hesitate to describe this blend as a burley only because it is much more of an aromatic than anything else. I normally don't care for aromatics, but I have to say this is some nice stuff. The relights are sweet rather than bitter like most burley blends and the smoke is nice and rich. The casing is one of the better even though the tin smell is very strong. You can definitely taste the quality tobacco used in this blend, however the flavoring is certainly the dominate taste. This is fine in this case since the bourbon topping is done quite well. The only other aromatic tobaccos that are flavored with booze that I don't mind are mephisto and Orlick's scotch mixture, and both are not as good as this one is. It burns nice and cool like a nice burley should. If you are looking for a great burley experience and nothing else this may not float your boat, but if you want to try an excellent aromatic with a fine rich tobacco taste, give it a try. I think you will be surprised!

1 person found this review helpful.

prestonmarkstone Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
prestonmarkstone (3)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

Pennington Gap is described on the tin as "finished with bourbon for that touch of southern hospitality." I'm not a big fan of blends finished with spirits, as I find they tend to bite a little more than I'd like. The tobacco itself is a "crumble cake," a coal-to-chocolate color with bright flecks of cube-cut burley, and the tin aroma is sweet, fruity, and slightly nutty (the burley shining through, I presume).

The tobacco's exposition is smooth and clean, with an easy light and an initial burst of flavor. There is a definite casing that is well-balanced with cavendish and burley, and burns off quickly, leaving distinct flavors of cavendish and something slightly sour (the bourbon?). Perique makes intermittent appearances through the first third of the bowl, becoming more pronounced as the bowl progresses. It's a tasty and satisfying smoke, very smooth, cool and gentle, exceedingly pleasant through the nose. I've smelled a friend smoke this blend as well, and it has a wonderful aroma.

I notice a bit of the sweetness returning towards the end of the bowl. It seems to take on some fuller dimension and linger on the palate at its finish, and leaves behind a very fine white ash.

This is easily my favorite C&D blend, and a great blend for a regular smoke.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pkloop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pkloop (52)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant

Cracked open a tin with just under 4 years of age on it...

Appearance: Mostly dark with some brown chunks mixed in..very "rough cut" if you will..smells deeply of fermenting fruit with a slight tinge of alcohol. Really smells good to me...but I don't detect bourbon in the note..

Packing & lighting: Easy 3-step & go. My sample is at the ideal moisture content, that is to say a tad moist..which I prefer over dry. This enables a nice springy pack and it takes easily to flame.

Smoking: Pennington Gap starts off with a nice sweet note. To me it tastes of a "watered down" cavendish, in a good way. I get the black cav tastes but not in an overwhelming way. I like the occasional bowl of BCA etc.. but I tire quickly of that flavor. Its well presented here not dominating the smoke at all but just contributing a bit to the note and smoothing out the burley. I don't get the perique here really at all..if the description didn't list it I wouldn't have guessed its present. Perhaps a slight spice of it here & there but not much more. All & all a really balanced blend of its component tobaccos perhaps leaning slightly heavier on the black cav. I also don't get much of the whiskey flavor but it is present and for my tastes I wouldn't mind if it were a bit stronger. I was looking for an alternative to Borkum Reef whiskey which I enjoy the flavor of but cannot smoke due to how insanely bitey it is..speaking of bite you will find none here. This is an extremely well behaved tobacco and will tolerate poor technique without issue. A great trait for those times when you're not paying much attention to the smoke and get sloppy on cadence/tamping. That said, its worth taking the time here to really ponder the smoke as it can develop into something more then the sum of its parts would indicate. While its not a "complex" or "heady" smoke by any means you'd be doing a disservice here by not giving it a chance. Burns to the bottom with minimal relights..

Finish: Nice finish here sweetness remains to the bottom without any burley bitters. No goop or dottle mess left behind. Although this is an aromatic I can't imagine this ghosting a pipe with anything other then perhaps a slightly sweet essence.

Overall a good smoke worth the price of admission...can I have a bit more bourbon in mine next time though?

Pipe Used: Misc briars & cobs

Age When Smoked: 3 1/2 years

Purchased From: smokingpipes

Similar Blends: Borkum Reef whiskey with less whiskey flavor and NONE of the bite...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Appalachian Chef Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Appalachian Chef (52)
★★☆☆
Very Strong Medium Very Mild Tolerable

A Burley blend with heavy bourbon casing. Excellent cube cut that burns evenly when dried slightly, Gravity pack lightly or you will not get the proper draw. The burley gave me the typical sour flavors and the bourbon was just enough, but overall it was nothing to write home about. The nicotine punch was heavier than the flavor.

Pipe Used: Falcon Billiard

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cgar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cgar (37)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

If one loves the smell of bourbon then this one is for you! Some sweetness from the bourbon topping and the black cavendish, but about mid way down the bowl that fades away and then you get the kick from the spiciness of the St. James perique. I was really suprised that this bourbon soaked smoke did not carry that taste all the way to the end but its probably best that the bourbon vanishes under the nutty and spicy tastes of the burley and perique. Overll a good smoke, not much taste for tall that bang you get when you open the tin, but over all a well balance C&D smoke that Ill revisit again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tom Servo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tom Servo (58)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

You pop the top here on Grandma's Fruitcake soaked for days in Bourbon. Heady liquor aroma on top Fig Newtons, butter cookies, nuts and candied fruit. The bourbon is strong, but comes across in shades more like sweet red wine and Southern Comfort Liqueur. Moving in and out of the Nut-Cake-Whiskey-Raisin background, fleeting scents of peach, pear, grape, and especially banana - as Briarabbit put it in his review - Banana Pudding. (Amen, Brother! Nilla Wafers and all.) Another strange scent developed after the tin was open a few days, it was a fruity - yeasty aroma that reminded me of Flintstone's Chewable Vitamins, oddly pleasant.

Don't pack the cube cut too tight and it burns very well. Lighting up releases the bourbon flavor and the spice from the Perique and Cavendish. I swear for a moment I taste KFC Original Recipe's 11 herbs and spices, maybe this blend just makes me think of all things Kentucky.

In moments the bourbon is gone, and we're in cool, comforting Burley country. Always pleasant, nutty Burley, but this time it‘s haunted by the ghosts of the richer, spicier Perique and unflavored Cavendish. Wrapping up the bowl with over-roasted nuts and black pepper, with the slightest sweetness. The nicotine grows down the bowl to a decent kick at the bottom. If you didn't pack to tight, it will burn well to the heel.

I think this is an excellent flavored burley, sort of a gourmet chef's version the old American stand-by. That said, it's just not my favorite style. I give it 3-Stars for my humble opinion, but if you love good Burley or very light aromatics then consider it 4-Stars for sure.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (227)
★★☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant to Tolerable

A friend gifted me a tin of this just today. It is my first C&D blend. The tin was dated 4-14-09, so just a little over a year old. Upon opening the metal lid to the tin, I took a whiff of the tobacco and it smelled just like alcohol-soaked bananas - and VERY over the top. It also reminded me of very sweet bubble gum. "Oh, oh, where's the tobacco," I thought. It was also quite moist for the tobacco to have been 13 months old. You couldn't tell it was really cube cut Burley by the feel as all of the tobacco was very spongy. I loaded up a meer-lined briar and smoked a bowl. I have to say I was not impressed. Surprisingly, the strong tin note did not translate into the taste. As a matter of fact, there was no taste of it whatsoever. All I tasted was a spiciness that I attributed to the Perique, disagreeable at best, and thankfully, not all of the time. Not like what I am used to with Perique or Kentucky leaf. It actually made me a bit nauseous. Mostly, the experience was of smoking hot air - very boring and not enjoyable.

Now in all fairness, I will leave the lid off for a week at least to dry this some. I want the tin note to vanish as much as possible (hopefully all of it) in the hopes of bringing out some real tobacco flavor next time I smoke it. Until I dare try it again, only 2 stars. Not a good introduction for me to the C&D line. I almost wonder if I got a bad batch considering the many 3 and 4 star reviews for this tobacco.

UPDATE 9-3-10: No change from previous.

UPDATE 2-13-12: Looking for something different to smoke tonight after a long day of teaching which kept me on campus till nearly 10pm, I dug Pennington Gap out of a tobacco cabinet that consists of "hardly ever smoked" tobaccos. Although it had dried out considerably since its tinning from over 2 years ago, if given to me without prior knowledge I would say it was still quite fresh. It wasn't sticky to the touch, but stuck together with compression and a tad more springy. It still smelled of alcohol soaked bananas but not nearly as when first opened. In all fairness I would have to say it was like smoking hot air. Only the Perique made itself known from time to time with its spicy signature. There was a mild side-stream sweetness at times but not enough to satisfy. If there is any Burley - or Kentucky Burley for that matter - it has yet to make itself known to me. Now I am a lover of good Burley and smoke Aged Burley Flake, Burley Slice, and Edgeworth Sliced on a regular (daily) basis. The Burley in Pennington Gap is nowhere in the same league in my opinion. I know it is all about personal taste, but I just don't get all of the glowing reviews where the Burley is touted to be the holy grail here. I just can't see it, let alone taste it! Out of respect for my fellow pipe smokers I will hold to 2 stars, but personally, that's a stretch for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DoctorThoss Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DoctorThoss (146)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Strong

Now this is a great tobacco, albeit a decidedly weird one... It belongs in a bizarre, perique-drenched category all its own. At times, Pennington Gap fairly reeks of humid nights spent in a haunted bayou, savoring a glass of chilled bourbon while listening to the wildlife as it frolicks under a full moon. Alternately, it evokes images of sitting in the backyard under a blazing summer sin with a glass of iced tea in one hand and a good book in the other .... Either way, it's a seriously good time.

Pennington Gap is reminiscent in appearance and concept to G.L. Pease's Barbary Coast, only this blend is easy to light and burns smoothly all the way to the bottom of the bowl. It burns cool, doesn't bite at all, tastes naturally sweet, and it sings in pretty much any type of pipe I care to smoke it in. As the tin description indicates, the flavor seems to go back and forth between the burlies and perique, which is an interesting effect if you're smoking this at a time when you can really concentrate on the tobacco. The perique deserves special attention here, as for some reason this mixture really brings out that condimental leaf's fruity character and would serve as an ideal introduction to its charms.

The bourbon topping is heavily applied yet seems to actually cool the smoke, producing a flavor and texture akin to a chilled banana pudding. As a rule, though, I prefer to let the tin air out a few days. The flavoring seems to evaporate quickly, leaving behind a more natural taste that retains some of the cool mouthfeel. As good as this stuff is, however, I think of it exclusively as a summer blend -- I just can't seem to imagine smoking it much once the weather turns cold.

After years of smoking this, I'm still not sure whether to call Pennington Gap an "aromatic" or not. On the one hand, it's heavily sauced and has a noticeable amount of unsweetened cavendish. On the other hand, it doesn't behave like an aromatic at all. This is an exceptionally full blend, high in both nicotine and tobacco flavor (did I mention the PERIQUE?), which is hardly characteristic of aromatics. Also, the room note is unlikely to win you many friends -- it's pleasant enough, but pungent and quite strong.

I recommended this to anyone who likes, or thinks they like, perique. Otherwise, stay far away.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bobspipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bobspipe (14)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

On the quest for some lighter aromatics (partially to avoid stinking up the house in the winter), I stopped at this one. Not as complex to me as Barbary coast (BC is for when I want to take the time to appreciate it) but as others have pointed out, similar.

Now I find myself reaching for it when I think I want something sweet, and am always surprised to remember that great tobacco taste. Great blending -- topping is just right, and perique just enough to make me think that maybe I really don't dislike perique after all. a change of pace that's easy to like.

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Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (304)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong Strong Mild Tolerable

Sometimes my taste seems to differ radically from that of some esteemed ASPers... I truly hated this tobacco! I was expecting something similar to Barbary Coast (cubed burley, booze topping, perique...), but how wrong I was! The tin aroma is something to die for: like bananas doused in good bourbon... very sweet, strongly alcoholic. I have never smelled so much alcohol in a tobacco! This, together with the high wetness of the tobacco and the presence of cavendish, made my mouth drool but also my brain to worry a bit. After all, Barbary Coast is much subtler when you first approach it by sniffing the opened tin. It was so moist that the paper in the tin was all heavily stained! Quite weird for a C&D product, maybe they messed up this batch? Anyway, the tobacco seemed to take fine to the light and burn well. Actually, in spite of the wetness and the alcohol, the burning rate was slow and regular, producing a cool smoke. But then where's the problem? The problem lies in taste: I find it watery, uninteresting, unsurprising. The burley is never as nutty as in Barbary Coast or other C&D blends, it just tastes like hot air. You can't even feel much of the alcoholic scent that is so evident in the tin! It's just a weak, "empty" smoke (maybe due to the Cavendish?), with some of the heavy notes which are so typical of Perique (and I don't like too much Perique!) and some hints of sweetness. Boring!

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Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
★★☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

Appearance: Cube cut, fairly small and uniform size. About 50% dark, 50% medium brown colors. Quite moist for a C&D offering. I had to let it dry out bfore packing it.

Aroma: Opening the can releases an almost overpowering sweet and boozy aroma. After it dries a bit, some burley nose appears, although the booze seems to predominate.

Packing: While still moist, it can easily overpack. When dried properly (for my taste)it packs easily into any size bowl.

Lighting: Lighting is the usual two match affair. Not too slow or too fast to catch.

Initial flavor: To me, this tastes like Borkum Riff original. Way too sweet, and too much of the Bourbon. Much sweeter than Barbary Coast, which I like.

Mid-bowl: There is some tobacco flavor as it burns into the middle part of the smoke, but I still find the flavoring way too dominant. Burns cool and dry for an aromatic. (There, I said it. It's an aromatic, nothing but an aromatic).

Finish: Not much change at the end. It left the pipe dry and clean, and surprisingly little of the aroma lingers

Summary: No place in my rotation. There are other Burley based blends much more to my taste. This is probably the lowest rating I've ever given to a C&D product.

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