|I don't think I need to finish the tin to review this, as its pretty basic and monochromatic. Very old tin - around 1995 - but I doubt the aging did it much good. As a sidenote, this is still being produced by K&K but my tin was made in the UK by, I think, Robert McConnell.
Very light fruit taste here that serves as a light sweetener to a very bland batch of virginias and cavendish. Maduro? Didn't taste any. Didn't taste much of anything, to be honest. However, as an aromatic, the quality of the tobacco appeared ot be high. In other words, Ashton did not oversaturate the sauce in order to disguise inferior leaf, but I do think they purposefully used a bland concoction in order to make this an "all-day" blend that won't offend. In that, I suppose they succeeded but if you're after some flavor with your sweetness, you won't find it here. Nice room aroma - very natural in its sweetness and not overpowering like a lot of aromatics.
As a sidenote, Bill Taylor of Ashton has recently died. RIP, Bill. Thanks for the great pipes and thanks for Black Parrot and Old London Pebblecut, if not this blend.
|This is some kind of a different "aromatic" tobacco.
The fruit aroma is added not as the last step of production, but during fermentation. This makes the aroma more powerful and lasting.
Anyway, I think that the taste is terribly bland: this is a tobacco which is much more pleasant to smell (in the can or by smelling the smoke in the room) than to smoke! It is very sweet and pleasant to those around you! Some friends described the aroma like a mixture of dried plums, apricots and peaches... and a non-smoker said, upon sniffing the can, "Wow, can this tobacco be chewed? Its smell makes me hungry!"
For the smoker, though, the taste is gentle but completely uninspiring. The fruit taste is barely perceivable, but at least the tobacco doesn't bite like other aromatics like some Amphoras. As a whole, a very disappointing experience.
Important warning: you may not want to smoke this in your best pipe, or in the one you use for english blends! It leaves a very sticky, almost sirupy, remain in the bowl, and its remaining aroma might spoil the taste of the english blend. There's an exception... I tried to smoke some Early Morning Pipe in the same bowl I have been smoking this Fragrant Blend: well, the experience was astonishing! It seems that the medium-mild taste of Dunhill's popular tobacco gets an extra boost from the remaining sweetness of the Ashton: the result was a smoke that contained all the subtle and pleasant nuances of EMP, but further emphasised and more rounded! The fruit aroma was barely perceivable, but it added an extra sweetness that married perfectly with the english taste of EMP! It's the only interesting use I can find for this expensive but dull Ashton blend...