It is my understanding that Galway Bay is predominantly made with Burley, which would account for the ?Burley Curse? that lustra mentions. This is indeed an economical aromatic. The Irish Cream smell and taste are pleasant, the tobacco mundane as usual for Clan Shaw. My pouch, and indeed just about every Clan Shaw that I?ve tried, was moist and sticky. A nice aromatic diversion but nothing to write home about.
Galway Bay is another in the economical Clan Shaw line of aromatic tobaccos. It is a chopped brown ribbon of unusually uniform cut so heavily cased that I could smell the blend through the packing it arrived in. Once lit, it's a very mild tobacco with a sweet taste that fades quickly. By mid-bowl, most of the casing is gone and the smoke has turned slightly bitter. I suspect the "burley curse," but the package says the blend is built with Virginias. Another tobacco mystery. As with many aromatics, what taste this blend had is gone by the end of the bowl. On the plus side, Galway Bay burns to a fine grey ash and won't gunk up your bowl. This blend is nothing to get excited about, but for an aromatic, it's harmless, and at $20.00 the pound, cheap enough to smoke endlessly if you like it.
This was sent to me as a sample with an order of other tobacco, so I decided to try it with an open mind. It's a light aromatic, with the casing described as "Irish Cream". That may be, but I certainly don't identify the tobacco's smell with that flavor. The smell is sweet, but not fruity; after reading the description, I suppose it could be Irish Cream, but I wouldn't have guessed so otherwise. My sampler pack tobacco came fairly dry; not as much so as C&D's blends, certainly, but far drier than most aromatics. It appears to be a mix of medium/dark and lighter brown tobaccos, with the darker making up about 90% of the mix. A mix of longer and shorter cuts, it packs easily and lights even more easily. I chose a new corn cob pipe for my first test. The first impression I receive is sweetness without fruitiness; the Irish Cream, I suppose. For the first third of the bowl, the casing is strong but not overpowering. I can taste the tobaccos underneath, and can tell they are providing some of the sweetness I taste. Blowing the smoke through the nose is especially nice. In the second third of the bowl, the casing becomes weaker in taste, though I still am getting pockets of stronger flavor. The tobacco taste is even clearer, and it is apparently a high-quality mix. There is sweetness from the tobacco, as well as some semi-complex nuttiness. The last third is similar to the second, with the occasional tastes of Irish Cream continuing right down to the end. There is some additional complexity as the bottom is neared, but nothing spectacular. At the very bottom, there is some moisture, but very little. Overall, I'd compare this blend to C&D's aromatics; both are far drier than normal aromatics, both burn fairly easily cleanly, both are based on high-quality tobaccos that you can actually taste. The main difference I can see is that the casing on this tobacco actually lasts through the bowl, and tastes more closely to the pouch aroma than C&D tobacco. An excellent diversion from English mixtures, this is a mild and uncomplex smoke that can be enjoyed without dealing with the goopy, sticky, wet aromatics that many dislike; an excellent smoke for mixed company. UPDATE: Smoking this blend in other (briar) pipes resulted in similar impressions, with the exception that the tobacco's sweetness was not quite as noticeable as it was in the cob pipe.
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