|DUNHILL LONDON MIXTURE
Tin appearance:Thin ribbons of gold,khaki,tan,brown for the main and some black.
Tin aroma:Musty,smokey old spicy charred fragrent wood/bracken/rosewood/extinguished gorse fire. There is with this also a musky dunhill-esque honeysuckle essence which is a warm fruity and dare i say erotic like pheremone attractant topping,,,;an inhale and exhale makes me go "ahhhh,mmmm"(took me a while to sus this factor;it is an essence i have detected slightly in some other dunhill aromatics actually and on the first sniff of the tin contents when peeling the card lid off,i knew i was re-aquanting myself with familiar dunhill.)
A very smooth easy smoke with well melded and balanced ingredients that produce a uniform combined and consistant taste rather than alternating textures and counterpoint(atleast in my pipe);its not a complicated smoke,but it has quality and says plenty without digression or dialectic(a pleasant monologue).
Not as leathery & peppery as 965 & without 965's contradictory and intrusive 'ice cream soda topping'(why the hell do they put that in there?) London mixture is not an aromatic BTW,,its strength is possibly on par with 'squadron leader' but more english whereas squadron leader is more balkan-esque.
Its not a sooty latakia either and has once it gets going a freshly baked onion bread(turkish),with a toasty toastedness(mild latakia)and a gently sweet hot cross bun/sweetened bread minus the currents(virginia's). Its not industrial tasting ala creosote or diesal sump oil like 965 or old dublim(i prefer old dublin and 965 is a substitute) Think of burn't dried herbs on the outer of a crisp charrred out BBQ sausage(without the meat flavour)
The honeysuckle essense soon disapears down the bowl in taste but its room note may linger(i don't really know because i have only smoked it outside).
I will say that it leaves a slight memory on my clothing(a pipeish honeysuckle factor). It is quite dry in the tin and lights perfectly and instantly like a one match strike TV commercial..
It can burn hot and fast and can do with some puffing restraint on my part(i usually smoke hard to burn plugs and ropes which require a more thermodynamic technique to keep going,,plus i am often too lazy to pre-dry a bowls worth before ignition..
It seems very dirty on my pipe cleaners and the narrow guage clay stem which i used does girgle and clog. I am not sure drying would help this out,i may be better smoking this in a more open and airy briar,but the taste may become milder. (I tried it in a falcon pipe and the filter was quite clean but it was very wet,considering how dry the tobacco is i think humidity in the air condensates after combustion). Tastes better or sharper and clearer in my clay i will say.
Its a medium taste and its tarryness probably contibutes to its smooth creamy richness of smoke texture.
A light toasty spicewood smokeyness,with sweet and sour notes but not saucy or ketchupy in a vinegary way(i say this because i have smoked other blends like erinmore balkan mixture which had a vinegaric saucyness).
Its medium nicoteen satisfies but can leave me wanting more due to my small bowl handicap and the fact that i generally gravitate towards plugs and ropes which have serious nicoteen kick.But is an ok quick smoke when i fancy something quick and stronger than a rollup.
Its personality comes accross as a gentlemans smoke,sophisticated while affable and layed back(even rolling in it p£rhap$) A likeable classy backy that deserves a showy dunhill pipe to enjoy it in as well probably.
No soap and no tongue bite,but with fast puffing you may get dry tongue from the heat(this is my fault i know and due to localisation of the strait nail hole mouthpeice not spreading the smoke along a broader area in my mouth but;i generally like my pipes to hit the sweetspot of my tastebuds on my tobacco evolved and adapted tongue.)
When i am too tired to prepare a rope or plug but fancy something stronger than a rollup,this goes in and gets going quickly without fuss or relights.
Further down the bowl the taste gets dirtier and muddier 'woody smokey' and the initial honeysuckle essence becomes muted and the taste transfigures into a more robust toasty medium english with less sweet glamour;i am not sure i have any right to complain seeing as i smoke some pretty stout other brands,and i feel i should be judging this tobacco based on this factor rather than an essence.
Since opening the tin about a month ago the essence has somewhat faded from the tin and doesn't enter the smoke as much either.If you like the essence you will be advised to smoke this exclusively rather than smoking it between other blends over a longer period.(essence shelf life)
There is an amount of sizzle and crackle when going hard on it like a camp fire sausage and bacon egg fry up.The taste does stay lighter if you sip it BTW i have since tested.
Sweeter on the nose than in the pipe i have noticed but the smoke does have an almost unsweetened natural cavendish note to it and it comes accross as a medium naturally'sweetish' english.
I give it two stars;fact;i prefer my pungeant meaty,dungish ropes in a 6" clay pipe,,but this is an ok dunhill which has delivered exactly how people have described on this thread. I am not really a dunhill man;didn't really like nightcap,965 has an intrusive topping and i am not into aromatics.(light flake was good though)
I generally haven't got time to devote myself to large bowl time slots of indulgence plus i have to smoke outside,,and so i do not have the lounge parlour lizard lifestyle which this blend would comliment..
It is something i will dip into once in a while and i am glad i satisfied my curiosity,but i am not certain i would go out of my way to repurchase or keep any cellared.(i have got load of baccy already opened ,even though this is better than a lot of my stash)
I saw this when out buying some rollup and i had a desire to go back later and purchase a tin and eventually did,,,it was a lucky dip(the name 'london mixture' sounded nicely posh and interesting)
I can see how others have compared this to a james bond 'M' smoke,,;it does have an aristocratic air and it holds court without obnoxiousness. A fine pedigree tobacco.
update 19/10/2011; i have decided that this is better than 965 and so i am upgrading it to 3 stars.