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This is a blend heavy in Latakia but still smooth. It contains Orientals and Virginia, but the Orientals should be more forward than the Virginia. It contains tobaccos from four distinct blending houses.

Notes: It is inspired by Esoterica Penzance using design cues gleaned from smoking it, reading interviews with Robert Germain, and trial/error. I wanted to blend something like Penzance but using the best tobaccos sourceable for each component versus trying to match it exactly.

Since Penzance usually shows up already broken in transit, I decided to go against the grain and use all ribbons vs a kake (which has become trendy). This is not a match blend.

BrandKen Byron Ventures
Blended ByKen Byron
Manufactured ByKen Byron Ventures
Blend TypeEnglish
ContentsLatakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Packaging2 ounce pouch
ProductionCurrently available
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Medium to Strong
Medium to Strong
Room Note
Tolerable to Strong
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Driftedshank Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Driftedshank (5)
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Full Tolerable to Strong

I'm not a big fan of Penzance . I like it but won't go out of my way to obtain it- mostly due to it being a crumble cake. I do like English/Balkan style blends that are rich tasting and full, with a Penzance-like taste profile . I smoke more of this style than other tobaccos. I'm old enough to have smoked and loved Sobranie white in it's multiple iterations, 759, the great Sullivan Powell blends, Dunhill (Murray and pre-Murray) and other classics. Zen Pants (get the Penzance reference?) and another Byron blend called Mountains of Madness are very similar in style and quality to those old blends. Mountains of Madness is even richer than Zen Pants. Superb now, but with some age, they may well be even better.

Pipe Used: various

Age When Smoked: new

Purchased From: Ken Byron

5 people found this review helpful.