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Spicy Perique with tangy Virginia flake.

Notes: Court of St. James is a spicy combination of a broken-flake Virginia and peppery Louisiana Perique, with a tiny whisper of Latika. The result is a zesty blend, bursting with flavor.

BrandSutliff Tobacco Company
Blend TypeVirginia/Perique
ContentsLatakia, Perique, Virginia
Packaging1.5 oz Tin
ProductionCurrently available
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None Detected
Medium to Full
Room Note
4 reviews
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puro66 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
puro66 (73)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I bought three of the new Sutliff Private Stocks in a recent sale. COSJ was one of them because I love VaPers and thought what the heck. It is true that the tin does not list latakia as an ingredient, yet it is the first thing I smelled when opening the tin but there is almost no taste of it while smoking. I get good tasting full virginia and a nice bit of perique with no bite. The cut is long strip broken flake which I easily twist and stuff into the pipe and it takes to the match quite well with minimal relight. This blend puzzles me a bit but I surely do like it cause I'm about to finish the tin. Wish I could lay a bunch aside and see how it develops over time.

Pipe Used: Tinsky Panel Pot

Age When Smoked: New

3 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (610)
Medium Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

The Virginias are rich and a bit grassy/earthy with a light vinegar essence that is slightly noticeable in the beginning, but mostly disappears after a few puffs. The perique is peppery sweet. Although the tin description doesn’t mention it, there’s a touch of latakia in here. I also sense a hint of mocha. The cut is broken flake, and burns evenly cool with no harshness and no dottle. It’s a medium strength all day VaPer with some complexity. I imagine this will age very well in the cellar.

3 people found this review helpful.

Darby Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Darby (15)
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

Presentation: CoSJ appears to be a mixture of broken Virginia flake and a HEFTY dose of black coarse cut ribbons of barrel fermented St. James Perique. Because the broken flakes are thick cut, stiff, and long, this mixture needs to be thoroughly rubbed out and partially dried before you can smoke it.

Tin note: The tangy aroma of Ketchup/Tobasco that’s the hallmark of MacBaren’s matured Virginias (re: Sutliff owns MacBaren) is present, but not to excess. It’s accompanied by a pungent note of dark BBQ sauce, which implies (to me) the flakes were hot pressed after maturation, in the same fashion as MacBaren’s HH Old Dark Fired. The Perique’s plummy and mushroomy aroma is overpowered in the tin, but not in the bowl ... more on that in a moment.

Smoking: Skipping ahead to Mid-bowl, this is rich, full bodied and spicy smoke. Picture a three way combination of roasty HH Old Dark Fired, tangy HH Mature Virginia and peppery Perique, in almost equal measure, and you’ll have a good idea what to expect here. Courtesy of the hot pressed matured flakes used as the base, and the hefty dose of Perique used to balance them, this falls deeply into the strong end of the VaPr spectrum, and almost goes into the upper decks. Despite its strength, this blend works quite well ... the savory caramelized flakes pair nicely with the intensely peppery perique, the plummy notes of the latter round out the saucy tang of the former, and the thickness and age of the flakes (and admirably restrained use of sugar) help keep the smoking temperature in check. Despite the pungency, you can actually puff this at a fairly good clip without it overheating or biting back ... and unlike 1792, you can actually do back-to-back bowls of this potent mix without suffering ill effects.

Summary: This is a big, pungent, and very spicy VaPr that should please aficionados of hot-pressed flakes, perique-heavy blends, and BBQ fare alike. This blend works well, and gets a solid three stars. Add a full star if you're a fan of the MacBaren 'tobasco' note, HH Old Dark Fired and Perique in general.

Speculation: I'm guessing this is a discounted limited release (read: Sutliff blending a bunch of well-aged but overstocked MacBaren flake with some overstocked perique in order to clear warehouse space). I suggest buying it now, while supplies last and discounts abound. Definitely worth laying down a few tins.

---------- Pairings: I’d say pepperoni pizza with hot sauce, or hot wings with a chipotle based BBQ dip, or a dry-rubbed steak (served with A1 or HP), would all be winners here. For liquor, I’d go dark and full - for whiskey I’d do Baker’s 107 or Macallan 12, and for rum I’d do Gosling Blackseal. For beer & wine I’d counterpoint with a crisp dry pilsner or a dry sparkler, to keep flavor fatigue at bay.

Pipe Used: Grabow Freehand (Group 4)

Age When Smoked: Unknown (tin not vintage dated)

Purchased From: Pipe Club Promotional Tin

3 people found this review helpful.

nodrog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
nodrog (2)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Sutliff hit a grand slam with this one! I'd give it five stars if I could! I'm mostly a Va/per smoker with at least eight in my rotation. I ordered two tins from pipes and cigars just to give it a try and glad I did! Upon opening the tin I was flooded with a latakia smell that overpowers the other tobacco. Strangely enough I didn't even see the addition of the latakia in the ingredients while researching the bled. Upon lighting I detected absolutely no latakia!! Anyway, tons of taste and smoke! No harshness, sweetness from the Virginia's and just enough parique to tickle your tongue and not overbearing at all! And all this from a fresh tin with no ageing on it!!!! Love this stuff! I'm ordering a sleeve of tins to cellar! Give it a try my friends!

Pipe Used: Ser Jacopo, Ferndown

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: pipes and cigars

Similar Blends: Bayou morning, Escudo, McClellan 2015 Va/per.

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