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The incomparable aroma of this fine tobacco is due to the superfine pure Havana leaf which has been skilfully added to give the flavour of a fine Cuban cigar.

BrandJames Fox
Blended ByKohlhase & Kopp
Blend TypeCigar Leaf Based
ContentsBurley, Cigar Leaf, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Packaging50 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
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43 reviews
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Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
Medium None Detected Full Pleasant

Very few blends were as wonderfully put together (IMO), than the original Ireland made The Bankers. Deeply rich Orientals, Virginias and Latakia combined with dark and oily Cuban cigar wrapper leaf to produce a bold, heavy flavor that embraced the palate with TLC. The Burley element was in the background but provided support by lending more strength. Just marvelous!


4 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

The Cyprian latakia is smokey, woodsy, and mildly sweet. It's noticeable in every puff as it dominates some, but not all of the other components. It’s not a lat-bomb. The burley is toasted and a little nutty in a supporting role. The same role is played by the Virginia, which is grassy with a little earth, and some citrus. There’s an occasional dry sour note that likely comes from the Oriental/Turkish, along with some wood. The cigar leaf is a little sweet, and not always obvious, but it plays on your tongue from time to time during the proceedings. It may be a minor addition, but it adds an extra hit of flavor that I’d miss if it wasn’t there. Burns at a moderate pace with a fairly consistent smooth flavor, though for some reason, lacks a little depth even though it has a little richness. Has a mild nic-hit, and leaves virtually no moisture. Two and a half stars only because the lack of depth, though it still makes a decent all day smoke. Though none of the components really stand up to grab your attention, the tobaccos are high quality. I wouldn’t argue against a three star rating.

4 people found this review helpful.

Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (304)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

When I first tried some of this tobacco 2 years ago, it was still Irish-made: sweet, round, full bodied but not overly strong or aggressive. It had a delicious balance between the Virginias, the Latakia and a marvelous cigariness (withouth the harsh or heavy overtones of bad cigars). It was simply unique.

Then some months ago I had a tin of the "new version", which is German-made by Kolhase & Kopp (makers of the Rattray line)... It definitely had changed, in worse... The cigar aroma was less rich and delicious, and the whole blend seemed lighter in taste, more undistinguished. It was still fresh, absolutely not bitey, and quite enjoyable... but the magic had gone! It still is probably the most balanced of all the Cuban leaf blends (GLPease Robust is equally good, but as the name says it can be robust and spicy), athough I also feel that the nicotine content has increased: not untolerable, but I have to smoke it in a bowl which is no more than medium sized or the room starts spinning...

UPDATE: I have just opened a tin of the K&K version which I had let age for 5 years since buying it... not bad at all! It has become smoother, rounder and tastier than my previous experience with a fresh tin. The Cuban leaf has gone to the background even further, leaving a very rich, sweet and thick Latakia-heavy flavour. I am definitely enjoying this! Not as great as the first version I had tried, but certainly recommendable.

3 people found this review helpful.

pencils Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pencils (43)
Mild to Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

This is simply superb. Opening my first tin of this, I wondered at first whether I had loaded it in one of the few pipes that I keep for aromatic mixtures, as it has a sweetness that is extremely pronounced. I have now swapped it into several latakia-only pipes that I own, and find the same tasty, biteless complexity every time. It may be a little more expensive than most pipe tobaccos available in the UK, but it is a real winner and worth the extra few pounds. It is smooth, low on nicotine, and wonderfully flavourful. This is gentle on the tongue, rich, and unusual - I can only suggest that the addition of cigar leaf brings the interplay of orientals to the fore in a way that gloriously complements the creamy latakia and the solid virginia base.

I prefer this in a smaller bowl, as it tends to lose some of the sweetness when smoked in a larger pipe - strange, as I would much prefer to enjoy this for far longer than the 30-40 minutes that a smaller chamber gives. The trade-off is acceptable however, as the reward for a more compact bowl is an intensified flavour that is not marred in any way. It is no hardship to reload more into subsequent bowls, however, as each new first light returns a real reward. I love the consistency in quality that this blend delivers - no woody stems, no monochromatic lumps of one type of tobacco, just a melange of blacks and browns that carries the same experience from pipe to pipe. It is musty and pleasant in the tin, and translates similarly to the room note - my wife rarely comments negatively upon any blends, thankfully, but she endorses my positive description of the way this smells. It lingers in aftertaste in the same way that the room is improved by the burning.

It is also worth noting that the gentleman who served me in the Piccadilly shop was knowledgeable and extremely patient as I browsed through the various tins on offer, and was willing to direct me to other local B&M outlets that might carry further tobaccos to my taste. It may not impact the blend itself, but his emphasis on customer service and warm offer of adjourning to the onsite, indoor smoking area made this purchase to be remembered and recommended.

Delightful mixture that burns slowly and without any hint of bitterness or boredom.

Pipe Used: Several

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: James Fox, London

1 person found this review helpful.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (729)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The cigar leaf leads by just a touch lending woody leather and earth backed by the Burley/Virginia combo giving this smoke a very nice earthy, sweet fruitiness. Lastly the Latakia and Orientals provide a mild smoky woodiness. Overall it's a very nice and tasty smoke. Has a smoothness to it that's very pleasing. Has enough strength to satisfy. Better than 3 stars, but closer to 3 than 4.

Mild to medium in body. Medium in taste. No added flavoring. Burns very well.

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

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From:

1 person found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1645)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

James Fox-The Banker's Mixture. Note: this was from a loose pouch not a sealed tin.

The smell coming from the blend isn't the best. It's slightly cedar/woodsy and also a little charcoal like. Bizarre.

The look of the blend isn't too spectacular; Browns, blacks, a few golden specks and a standard ribbon cut.

From the pouch the moisture's good. This makes for easy igniting.

Once lit I find it's the cigar leaf that takes the leading role. Bare in mind, I'm not a fan of cigar leaf so this is reflected in my rating but if you like your blends to have some I'm sure you'll like this.

After the cigar leaf the next in line is the Burley. I find after about ten minutes the cigar leaf tends to abate somewhat and allow the Burley to come through a little more.

Those are the only real flavours I get. I struggle highly to identify other tastes, it's mainly cigars and nuts!

I'd say the nicotine sits just above medium in this. Probably a little too much for a taste only piper.

The room note isn't suprising. Again it's like a cigar!

As I said, I'm not a fan of cigar leaf; If I want to taste a cigar I'll have a Montecristo or a Bolivar!

That said though I don't think it's worth only one star.

Somewhat recommended.

Pipe Used: Rattray's Six Freinds Oom Paul

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: James Fox website

1 person found this review helpful.

tabaco Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tabaco (111)
Mild None Detected Mild Tolerable

As per other reviews it's nice to see the Europeans and Scandinavians keep the "names" of these "days of yore" brands alive; however, these incarnations are not even a match-stick close to the former British blends.

This stuff is bland, monochromatic and frankly an utter bore.

A fantastic cigar blend is Compton's Cuban Style, although it does not contain Latakia it's still wonderfully rich and more importantly interesting. And yes one can clearly see the cigar leaf.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

Mfg: James Fox Blend: Bankers

Preface: I didn't know what to expect when I opened the can. I Anticipated a blend similar to Sobranie #10, or GLP Robusto, but was pleasantly surprised. This one stands on it's own, and is a treasure.

Appearance: Dark ribbon cut, with some lighter leaf evident. Perhaps a bit finer than average for an English, but not a shag cut.

Aroma: Smells like an English blend with some maduro cigar leaf. Very nice indeed, you could enjoy this without a pipe.

Packing: Packs easily into medium and large pipes. Would probably do well in a smaller pipe, but this blend seems to want a larger bowl.

Lighting: Lights easily, just a tamp and a relight and it?s going.

Initial flavor: Wow, there is some Latakia which is in perfect harmony with the cigar leaf, and together they form a dark, sweet, smokey melange which is captivating. Burns cool, but stays lit well.

Mid-bowl: The Virginia peeks out regularly, but is usually a supporting player. There is an interplay of the three main components, which adds a nice compexity to the smoke. One of the best behaved blends I?ve smoked, rarely needs a relight.

Finish: Finishes just a bit too soon. Not that it burns quickly, just that I wish the pipe werer bigger

Summary: This is a nice medium to full blend, excellent after dinner. Would also be great in the afternoon with any beverage of your choice, if you can give it your full attention. Probably too full flavored for an eye opener. This also did not draw any hostile fire from the LSW, despite the cigar leaf.

1 person found this review helpful.

Ehrling Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ehrling (108)
Medium None Detected Full Strong

Will hold more appeal for the heavy English crowd. Substantial Latakia presence and not much sweetness—primarily bitter, somewhat sour and very smoky. I think 2-stars is generous.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

1979 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
1979 (62)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

James Fox - The Bankers

A mulligan stew of leaves combine to create toasted carmel popcorn with campfire overtones. Hints and teases of cigar leaf. Neither bold nor spicy. An ok, run of the mill sort of blend. It's better if you can age the tin at least several months and then let it breathe some.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rob73 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rob73 (77)
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

There is a certain complexity in this blend. Latakia is present but in very moderate quantity. Havana provides a full and satisfying taste but, to me, it remains a bit cigarette-like. 3,5/5 in my personal rating system.

Purchased From: Dubini, Chiasso (Switzerland)

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have been smoking The Bankers Mixture on and off over the past 6 or 7 years. The tin scent is musty and reminds me of an old book store for some reason. It burns dry and smooth, with the cigar leaf making itself known from the beginning, although it isn’t too much. I don’t get the sweetness from Bankers like I do with other cigar blends like Lewis’ 123 Mixture or my favorite, Compton’s Cuban Style Cigar Blend. TBM is earthier in flavor with a moderate amount of smokiness too. Considering the number of component tobaccos in TBM, I don’t find it very complex. Bankers is a solid edition to lovers of cigar leaf blends, although it would be mid-way down my list.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (191)
Very Mild Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable

White label tin, fine cut, the casing is the only taste in this mixture. Very bland, flat and uninspired. There is no cigar leaf in this mixture. The Latakia is very light, maybe the casing is a flavor added to enhance it. A very ordinary tobacco, a wanna be luxury mixture. Very disappointing.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Strichetto Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Strichetto (18)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

Bought in a classic round tin in Switzerland in 2013, at average price for a selected tobacco, surely not too expensive (half price respect a McLelland, I mean...). Medium ribbon cut, correct humidity, very typical scent of (good) latakia and (good) cigar leaves.

Taste: full bodied, rich, maybe not delicate but really satisfying, no biting at all... in one only word, wonderful!

Room note: the only, little problem... quite strong and persistent, but I don't take care of this, maybe sometimes a good reason to take a walk and happily smoke outdoor.

Burning: perfect at first, not too slow or too fast, after some days it gets more dry and goes only a bit too fast. Easy lightning.

Best Briars: I prefer top-end thick-wall pipes, for this.

Wow, this is really good! Probably the best tobacco I tryed in the last years, medium strenght (my ideal) but not a fly-killer, strong latakia and cigarish aroma with a little orientals note, if you sometimes appreciate a good light havana cigar too, you'll love it. Highly recommended.

P.S.: reading some other reviews, I feel there are two different The Banker's Tobacco, one very good (dark label: and another not so good (white label)... is it real?

Purchased From: Dubini, Switzerland

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

I'm not sure I can distinguish the Havana in this medium-English mixture. I do have some McConnell's Havana in my collection, and have found that when I add it to blends, it simply blends in rather than creating a strong cigar taste. I am no expert in cigars, as I do not smoke them. That said, I myself rate this as a good middle-of-the-road English blend. This style is not my favorite: I like my Latakia either strong or just a touch, and the average English is something I can smoke and enjoy, but not buy a lot of. I have to rate this as recommended, though, as it is quality tobacco well-blended. My tin is definitely the new version.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Grundie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Grundie (26)
Mild Very Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

I found this a very middle of the road blend. Definitely an English blend, not as obviously so as 965 or perhaps Provost.

The cigar leaf isn't all that noticeable and overall it's just a little bit bland.

An easy smoke with a light flavour.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

jankoez Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jankoez (67)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

My "version" of the tin is different from those pictured above - it is plain white label with black inscriptions and green Fox... and it is from Germany (blended by certain R. L. Will from Buende).

However, the blend itself is quite pleasant. Cigar leaf note is not dominant, so one may smoke it without fear that others will fall down because of heavy smoke. It burns easy and during smoking it does not change taste. Recommended even for Summer (evenings).

My rate: 4.0.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipepundit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipepundit (168)
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Apart from The Bankers the only other mixture containing cigar leaf that I have smoked was the Balkan Sobranie Virginia No 10, and that only occasionally. I have from time to time mixed the wrapper from the snipped-off end of a Cohiba to enliven an insipid tobacco, but I do not, as a rule, turn to cigar leaf in pipe tobaccos.

On opening the tin The Bankers exudes an aroma reminiscent of Durbar or Royalty, but in a much more muted way. The cigar leaf makes its presence felt in the mildest, subtlest, weakest form.It certainly adds something to the mixture, and I suppose it is an introduction to this type of tobacco. The usual virtues of Fox - impeccable cut, perfect moisture etc - obtain. My tin had some indeterminate age on it. It said made in the EEC: so it was probably made in Ireland.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Contemplative Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Contemplative (22)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The cigar aroma is noticeable from the outset, though not as strongly as with an actual cigar.

At first I thought that this mixture doesn't really work, because, as noted by others, cigar leaf is better experienced in a cigar, but its depth and richness does grow on you.

The mix doesn't seem to be burning quickly, but it finishes sooner than expected, and leaves a fine ash.

I'm glad to have tried this one, but it's a one-off experience for me, and I will be even more glad to return to what I now regard as my 'staple' mixture, from the same stable, the marvellous Provost.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Dottle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Dottle (162)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I agree with others that this is a very subdued English blend in all respects: it is a most gentle, exceedingly smooth, sweet and mild English yet largely one-dimensional. Regardless, I found it different than many other English blends I have smoked that are all too similar. I will call The Bankers a ?unique? English blend. The Havana leaf in this blend must be in the most, minute proportion as there are several other 'cigar' blends that present more cigar notes than The Bankers. Although hard to detect, I have no doubt that the presence of the Havana leaf is what makes this English blend unique. I also swear that this blend actually ?soothes? the tongue making it an ideal end of the day smoke that will cure ?tongue weariness.' ?CHECK' it out! BANK a few tins of this in your tobacco VAULT!

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

I rate this blend 8.8 out of 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

wyrmis Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wyrmis (7)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Considering this "cigar blend" is the most expensive blend in my current "pantry", I have to come down harsh on it just a little. It is a standard English at its core with just a hint of something more underneath. It lights well, burns moderately well once dried, and gives an ok room note. It has a pleasant complexity to it, nothing too suprising after the first few puffs. It smokes slow enough for a long and enjoyable session, only bites the tongue a little, and relaxes more than kicks.

The problem I have with it is the fact that the Havana blend-in is too subtle. Occasionally I would pick up a hint of it on the tongue throughout the longest portion of the smoke, but generally the flavor was dominated by what I would assume to be Perique but is possibly the Havana interacting with the Latakia. I could sort of pick it up in the room. Once, in the middle of the bowl, it intensified for a few puffs before dropping back down, and that was the best part of the experience.

Without a stronger presence, it is not worth the (slightly) steeper price tag. It will cost you a good three to five dollars more than the tin sitting next to it, and will not distinguish itself enough to justify it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I must assume I bought the made in Germany version as it was not like I thought it would be. I like a good cigar. No where in this blend was there the suggestion of a good cigar. An O.K. medium English blend. Two and one-half stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sasha Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sasha (228)
Mild to Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

Exactly the same as my review of Robert Lewis 123 Mixture, this isn't the legendary tobacco it used to be when made by JJ Fox. The guys at Kohlase&Kopp do a good job in keeping alive some historical brands, but fail in recreating the real taste of the blends. If your goal is a fine English mixture with Havana leaf added go for Schurch Mogano instead.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
Medium None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

Although I normally smoke VA flakes, this was an enjoyable change for me. The tin aroma is strong and gives more than a hint of Latakia. This fades somewhat after the tin is opened and the tobacco dries some. I also obtained more consistent packing and therefore smoking after drying but this may be more a matter of personal taste. The nicely prepared wide ribbons range from light brown to deep black. Smaller amounts of greenish/grey Havana cigar leaf are also present but don't overpower the taste or room aroma. If you're seeking more of a cigar influence, go with Mogano. There is no question that you are smoking high quality pipe tobacco. Overall, the taste is rich but creamy, cool and smooth and the various components complement each other very well and were masterfully blended. Although the taste and nicotine content are greater than my choice for an all day smoke and I miss the natural sweetness of my favorite VAs, after a meal, this blend is fantastic. However, the room aroma is strong and was disliked by non-smoking family and friends. But they don't like cigar smoke either.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Ducksbreath Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ducksbreath (115)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong

This is a wonderful blend which I've just recently discovered, devouring a tin in less than a week.

It is a medium English mixture, with a decent but not large amount of Latakia and a very nice VA base to which real Havana tobacco is added. I don't know for sure but all my taste detectors tell me this is the genunine thing, not chopped up White Owls or shredded Garcia Vegas; there is the unmistakable taste of the world's finest (cigar) leaf, albeit probably floor sweepings. I've had a Cuban cigarette before and it had the same taste component as I find here, but in an artfully made pipe tobacco it tastes much better of course.

It is not like smoking a Cohiba at all, not as heavy, though smoking in a larger diameter bowl will increase the body a bit and intensify the experience. Rather this is an incredibly smooth English mixture (one of the smoothest I've had) with an extra component of creaminess and strength from the cigar leaf. So this provides a good kick for those who look for such things.

I haven't had the orginal so I have nothing to complain about. I don't detect any humectant, my tin dried out nicely (drying is needed otherwise it does taste bland. The proper amount of drying will change the strength from med to med-full imho). The cons: it's expensive and not available everywhere.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blackhorse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blackhorse (90)
Medium None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

Life is good. This tobacco is incredible! There are certain milestones one encounters along the pathway of any endeavour. In my smoking experiences I might rate my first bowl of a newly opened tin of Penzance, the first time I matched the right pipe and the proper technique to understand a Virginia like Marlin Flake, the first half of nearly any bowl of Bob's Chocolate Flake, realizing that Dunhill's were cheap as well as astonishingly fine (well, MOST of 'em), knowing enough that when I once discovered six tins of 2000 Samarra at a small tobacco shop...I snatched 'em all! Well, the list would go on - and it would include this superb blend - The Bankers. Yes, it's deep...yes, it's wide...yes, it's delightful. The flavor, the aroma, the light, the main bowl, the denoument...etc. are best left to others of greater descriptive subtlety. I will simply supply you with a directive of hopefully sufficient strength to motivate you to act: If you know your bowl from a hole in the ground (ahem!) then you will immediately obtain and smoke this tobacco. You will then revaluate your past five years (or so) as wasted time and effort...lamenting that you can not relive them with this in your bowl at least once a day...but you will be bouyed up by the expectation that you have at least the next five years to make up for it (of course, I wish you far longer). You will then buy more...much more. Men will fear you...women will want you. You will find large pipes too small...and buy new pipes to children for it...grandchildren...well, you get the drift.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (302)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

This is a fine tobacco. It is rich in taste, flavourful, yet smooth and elegant. Basically a straight matured Virginia with an added creaminess from the Havana cigar leaf (and probably with some unsweetened Black Cavendish), its overall structure is somewhat similar to the bygone Sobranie's Virginia Reserve. It smokes cool and easily, and once you let it air out overnight it should not be difficult to pack and light. Medium strength (though not advisable for beginners), this mixture can be enjoyed after a good, hearty meal (let's say after a juicy New York steak, washed down with a glass or two of Montepulciano D'Abruzzo) and should be a delight to both cigar and pipe smokers.

In the tin the tobacco comes rather moist for my taste (something that is common to the Fox's blends I've tried). Thin ribbon cut, it presents attractive hues of browns together with small, jet black strands. It has a strong yet inviting aroma, as if an entire tobacco shop was condensed in the tin. Because of its richness I don't find this a constant or an all day smoke (unless you have a strong Freudian-G.Marxian-Castrean complex, and smoke cigars all the time!), but as an after lunch-dinner companion it is absolutely splendid. Great stuff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.