|I don't think that Bufflehead makes a bad tobacco, so lets get that out of the way. I am a big fan of Common Teal. But, there are times when Common Teal, which is latered in latakia, makes one a persona non grata in his own home. Redhead Decoy was made for those times. It is a more refined blend, with subtilties that would be pushed out of the way by the latakia in Common Teal. It is a joy for a winter slow smoke. Lights quickly and burns completly to white ash. If you like FMOTT, you will like Redhead Decoy.
1yr. later. Many different tins have been thrown off the UPS truck toward my back door since this original review. Redhead Decoy remains one of my favorite blends. I think it's one of David's best.
2yrs. later. Still one of my favorites. Now I think it is closer to Ashton's Old Dog (which is said to be a McCelland product). But, RD has both FMOTT and OD beat. It is full and very soft with just the right amount of complexity. This is my "go to" Latakia blend now.
|I at first confused this with the Redhead bulk from Bufflehead, which is a much different tobacco.
Upon opening the tall 2 ounce tin I noted mostly black tobaccos in a confetti-like cut, with perhaps 10% of the mixture a rubbed-out brown sliced flake. The tin aroma is subdued, with dark dried fruit and smokey overtones. Texture is soft and somewhat moist, and I packed the bowl with a light hand.
From the first puff the overall impression is of smoothness, and that continues to the end of the bowl yielding a fine grey ash with a few charred bits at the bottom. A subtle sweetness starts early and stays consistently throughout the bowl, and the latakia adds its special smokiness without ever overwhelming the other flavors. I let the pipe go out at midbowl and cool; upon relighting, the first puff had a tinge of the bitterness I've experienced in other Latakia blends, but returned with the next puff to its original smoothness.
I can't imagine how I'd improve Redhead Decoy. It has become a favorite.