War Horse War Horse Bar

Made of dark-fired Kentucky, dark air-cured and matured red Virginia.
Notes: From P&C's web site: War Horse Bar is a plug tobacco made in the tradition of the long-missing Irish tobacco. Made of darker, earthier leaf, War Horse Bar has a singular top note added, and the tobacco is pressed and cut into plugs. The flavor and body are astoundingly stout, and is definitely meant for the experienced pipe enthusiast. If you love robust and bold pipe tobacco, War Horse Bar will become a staple for you.


Brand War Horse
Blended By Russ Ouellette
Manufactured By Sutliff Tobacco Company
Blend Type Virginia/Burley
Contents Burley, Kentucky, Virginia
Flavoring Anisette, Floral Essences, Other / Misc, Tonquin Bean
Cut Krumble Kake
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country United States
Production Currently available


Extremely Mild -> Overwhelming
Medium to Strong
None Detected -> Extra Strong
Room Note
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

3.37 / 4





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Displaying 11 - 20 of 52 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 03, 2016 Medium to Strong Strong Medium Pleasant
What I like about this the most is the ease of preparing for smoking. This is not an extremely dense plug as with many of the Danish produced plugs, ie Warrior's, Peterson's 3Ps, etc. It is very similar to the way Revor Plug is pressed - you can rip off what you without the need of a knife, rub it out and put it in your pipe. Even easier than with Revor as Revor is comprised of full leaf and War Horse Bar is not. The tin smell and pre-light draw was interesting and reminded me of chocolate cake (not the icing); very coaco like with vanilla in the background. I'm suspecting this is the valerian root extract? Lighting was easy and it stayed lit without issue. It remained cool and dry to the heel and never was there any bite. During the smoke it had a faint cherry like taste as well as the taste of chocolate cake previously described. I attribute this to heliotrope which does impart a cherry flavor/aroma to whatever it is added to. Very similar to Sam Gawith's 1792 Flake but not nearly as strong or flavored as 1792. WHB has been long awaited and certainly didn't disappoint. Good for when you want something different. A solid smoke, impeccably constructed. However, a bit less of the flavoring and more of a truer tobacco taste would really be great.
Pipe Used: Peterson tankard
PurchasedFrom: Pipes & Cigars
Age When Smoked: Fresh from tin.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 19, 2020 Strong Very Strong Full Strong
War Horse Bar has a very sweet tin note. While I can certainly say that there is tobacco present in the tin note the sweet toppings (whatever they are) are the predominate note. As for the smoke: The KY seems to be a little forward for me compared to the Burley and VA's. It has a floral, vegetative note that is unique to KY along with its woody note from the fire curing. It is slightly earthy and smokey with just a hint of spice. The VA's follow this and are slightly tangy that verges on tart at times with a dark fruit note that suggests Red VA's are present. I also get a little grass and citrus that suggests some brights were used as well. They too may have a little earthy note. They burley offers its usual nutty earthiness and falls behind the VA's but moves froward at times. The toppings are sweet and defy my attempts at figuring out everything that has been added. I do get something similar to tonquin bean/vanilla and there is definitely some licorice root extract there but there is certainly more going on that just that. Whatever it is it is quite strong and I have to really focus on the flavors to find all the nuances of the tobaccos. Yet, it is very complementary of the tobacco and works very well. This is a great scented plug! That has a nic hit that is right at the strong level and is very satisfying. It has too much going on to be an all day smoke and after a while it was not an every day smoke for me. The room note was noticeable for me and I usually do not notice it without leaving the room and returning to it. So it is strong. I found it very pleasant but others found it overwhelmingly intolerable. So you will either love it or hate it.

On a personal note I will pick up a tin or two from time to time but in the future when the mood strikes for this I think I will cut off what I want to smoke for a week and jar the rest for later use.
Age When Smoked: ROTT
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 23, 2018 Strong Medium Full Tolerable to Strong
It is my understanding that War Horse Bar is a modern American attempt to recreate an old Irish staple plug. I hope someone will correct me if they know different. The tobacco is certainly pressed, whether or not with steam, I don’t know, but it’s pretty dark, consolidated, and dense. Tin note is tonquin over fruit leather and dirt that’s only slightly musty. I tried slicing flakes off the plug with no success, as they break apart, but I have not wasted a lot of time on this yet. Rather I have settled for crumbled tobacco that loads easily and lights and smokes down OK with regular tamping. Initial tastes and scents are like an amplified tin note, then the tobacco builds in strength and intensity as it is smoked down. The scent of tonquin is strong, and the Kentucky is strong and smoky, also somewhat bitter. The VAs are stoved reds and something like air cured brown, all fairly melded with the KY, and the tobaccos are well met in strength by the tonquin. Basically, if you dislike tonquin, don’t bother with War Horse Bar. I fiddled around with this tobacco for some time before trying it in an old briar pot that I’d recently resurrected by enlarging the air hole, which was constricted through its bit. Though a 1” bowl might be more WB than some wish to smoke, it finally “deconstructed” this concentrated blend enough that WB’s flavors are present and accounted for all through a lengthy smoke, including dark fruit leather, some sugar, and enough anise that I’m surprised I missed it for so many bowls. For comparison, WB is not so smooth as 1792, but it is similar in character, which is to say, strong. So, no surprise, strength is strong. Tastes are full. Room note is barely tolerable, and it stinks up one’s pipes, clothing, and person. Aftertaste is the best of the smoke, trailing off with increasing sugar; quite nice, actually!

Here is another “he-man” smoke that I suspect will not please the majority of pipe smokers. It took me some doing to get its best. For me, it can be compared to 1792 or Bold Kentucky, though IMO it is not quite that good. FYI, I also like it from one of my old, group 5 KY pipes, though it hardly shines from other pipes I’ve smoked it in. Recommended 4 stars worth to fellow codgers, and not at all to beginners, unless they be fearless adventurers.
Pipe Used: varous briars; pot preferred
PurchasedFrom: 4noggins
Age When Smoked: straight from tin and young from jar
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 27, 2016 Strong Medium Full Pleasant
In a word, delicious. The overall impressions come more from the flavoring than the tobaccos, although hints of the Kentucky come through. The flavorings strike me as cocoa, with hints of coffee and tonquin. The bar seems to be between a plug and a heavily-pressed crumble cake, but it breaks apart fairly easily. The N is well-hidden at first, but it does sneak up on you throughout the bowl. Unless you already smoke ropes and other heavy-N blends, this isn't an all day smoke. It lights easily, but does need a relight or two more than usual after the first half of the bowl.
Pipe Used: briars, cobs, and meers
PurchasedFrom: pipes & cigars
Age When Smoked: 2 months after purchase
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 07, 2016 Medium Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant
I haven't ever been of fan of tobacco that tastes like anything but tobacco. Upon cracking the tin, it smelled so familiar, but couldn't place it. I'm the first to say so here, so perhaps I'm alone, but I smell Amaretto, almond liquor. I ripped off a corner by hand and rubbed it out onto a tray. It's a tad moist, but I packed it as is. It lights easy and burns nicely. As a child, my mother used to make something called Black Russian Cake which contained, if memory serves, Kahlúa. This blend reminds me of it. I taste chocolate, almond, and a slight coffee taste. It's very sweet which puts it right in my wheelhouse. The taste stayed consistent to the bottom. This is a VERY seriously tasty tobacco. It wasn't what I was expecting and turned into a very pleasant surprise!
Pipe Used: Dunhill 5128 Black Briar
PurchasedFrom: pipesancigars
Age When Smoked: Fresh
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 04, 2022 Medium to Strong Strong Full Pleasant
Finally, an aromatic I enjoy without fortification! Popping the tin, a strong smell of amaretto smacks you upside the head. Apparently, this contains "British-style Aromatics", listed as Valerian root, coumarin, and licorice. Perhaps so, but it smells exactly like cheap amaretto, albeit in a good way. I'll admit, I cringed a little at first; repressed memories of cheap amaretto aromatics I smoked in my early career made me leery of bite. I have to talk about the cut; complain, actually. I don't know who decided to just whack a slice of the end of a block and call it a plug, but it was a bad move. It's pressed sufficiently to hold together, but it's narrow enough to teeter dangerously under a knife. Why couldn't it be cut into a more standard rectangular plug?! Ok, I'll get down off my soapbox now. Once (very carefully) sliced into roughly square flake-y things, the moisture is perfect to be rubbed out and smoked immediately. Remember, such dark and compressed tobaccos like to be just a little more damp than ribbon cuts. Cold draw shows off more of the amaretto notes, with a whisp of woodsmoke. Two charring lights and a true light, and we are off to the races. The first few draws will be heavy with the top notes, but it soon pulls back into the middle distance, allowing some more woodsmoke and occasional dark fruit notes to come forth. The topping never goes away, but it harmonizes well with the tobaccos. Sweetness is moderate, and the body is heavy and creamy. Nicotine content is on the upper end of medium; I wouldn't smoke this in a large bowl, but neither does it make me woozy. The room note is surprisingly good for such a heavy blend; very reminiscent of charred marshmallows. I guess you either love that or hate it. Despite my gripes about the way it's cut, this is a fantastic blend for those who love heavy smokes but don't want to be antisocial. I'll be stocking up.
Pipe Used: St Claude apple, Pipo, Grabow Viking
PurchasedFrom: Smoking Pipes
Age When Smoked: Fresh
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 29, 2021 Medium to Strong Strong Full Strong
The word plug is misleading and deceptive, this is not a plug, it is a crumble cake. If I had known that it was not a plug I would not have purchased it. The tobacco is also labeled as nonaromatic but it is and it will ghost your pipe, with all that said The smoke is fairly smooth, does not bite and the strength is almost perfect. If this was sold as a true plug (European style) I would buy a ton.

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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 07, 2019 Strong Strong Full Pleasant to Tolerable
First of all, I joined TR about 10 years ago & have since rejoined with a different handle & am copying &/or revising my earlier reviews. OK... about the War Horse Bar! The tin aroma is tantalizing... out of this world & the blend certainly doesn't smoke like it smells. It's a very sweet aroma that wafts from the tin with a flavoring that I couldn't possibly identify. It actually smells good enough to eat.

It's more of a crumble cake than a plug that can be scraped with something as dull as a butter knife or a good thumbnail & takes very little drying time. No sharp implement is needed. The first few tokes tasted a little like a sweet cigar that initially, is just a tad on the bitter side. However, that taste or flavoring tones down about one third to midway through the bowl as the nicotine kicks in & the awesome aroma of the flavored casing/topping, whatever, sort of disguises or diminishes the cigaresh taste.

It actually produced an alluring aroma as it burned off which seemed to make the blend more enjoyable... even when smoking outside. I don't smoke inside my home nor due I inhale which is the reason I prefer stronger blends & this one will absorb into your membranes without bite or harshness & will give you that added bliss you're looking for in short order.

It burns up pretty quick with little moisture, stays lit fairly well & leaves a light grey dottle in the bowl. I would purchase this again & it will be used as my "Nightcap" blend. It's probably not everyone's cup of tea but it works for me & goes great with a strong cup of hot coffee or tea. I wouldn't advise smoking it with anything stronger.

Pipe Used: Country Gent Missouri Meerschaum
PurchasedFrom: Smoking Pipes
Age When Smoked: Fresh Tin
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 30, 2018 Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Wow what a great tobacco! I've been smoking a pipe for 6 years and been trying to find the blend I want to stock up on. I bought one tin about a year ago and wasn't interested in opening it since I didn't like the first release version. I think that was some kind of English blend. Smoked half the plug and left the can open for two days straight by accident. I thought I might have ruined the tobacco, but I stuffed my pipe with it and it was still the perfect smoke. So I bought 7 more tins. This is with out a doubt MY tobacco. Next order will be twenty cans.
Pipe Used: Meerschaum
PurchasedFrom: Pipes and Cigars
Age When Smoked: 1 year
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 27, 2017 Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium Tolerable
Update: 09-2017 ... Wow what a difference some "jar time" made with this blend. Since my original review below, I opted to break up & rub out the plug and jar it for a few months before giving it another try. The rough edges (charcoal-like taste) that I reported earlier are just about gone and the sweet fragrance of tonquin (I assume) is rather delectable. The fine burning characteristics as reported earlier are unchanged. This blend certainly deserves another star in my opinion. Still not an all day smoke but definitely a nice change of pace for me. Hence, 3 of 4 stars is my vote!

Original review: 03-2017 ... It ain't bad but it ain't great neither. The good: 1) lights & burns down easily to a white-gray ash 2) medium to full flavor and smokes relatively cool. The bad: 1) woody charcoal-like dry taste with an "odd flavor" that I just can't put my tobacco stained finger on 2) I think I'd prefer to eat a dog chit sammich.

Seriously, I'm sure some will find this tobacco appealing but it's just not for me. I'll probably try it with a little BCA rubbed in and see if that helps me make it through the tin. If not, I see one of my favorite pipe sellers below (pipestud) really likes this blend ... if I run into him at the upcoming Chicago Pipe Show I'll give it to him!
Pipe Used: Cobs-didn't want to foul my other pipes
Age When Smoked: Fresh
3 people found this review helpful.
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