This review was taken from a sealed knife lid tin 40+ years old.
The tin aroma is grassy and slightly sweet, reminding me of RRR.
Started off more like a well aged Virginia/Burley mixture (slightly sweet and peppery/spicy) than an Oriental/English Mixture, slowly developing a tanginess as the Orientals were drawn out.
A third of the way down, the flavor becomes more spicy and peppery, with the spiciness taking center stage around mid bowl and the sweetness of the Virginias becoming a background note.
Past the half way point, the flavor deepens and the spiciness intensifies as the sweetness all but disappears.
Nearing the bottom of the bowl, wine like characteristics become evident as the smoke turns thick, chewy and slightly sweet.
Overall a very good (but not outstanding) Oriental mixture, with no hint of Latakia smokiness. It stays cool and without the tartness sometimes associated with Oriental mixtures. The aroma was musty, malty with a hint of spiciness farther down the bowl.
My tin of Cotton #1 was from the 1980s and the Latakia had really mellowed out to the point where the Orientals were on an even keel. I absolutely loved this weed. Complex, refined, deep and unrelenting in flavor presentation. This one is famous for a reason - it's mighty fine stuff!
I have never smoked the original John Cotton’s Mild so my only reference point is the new release. Each bowl starts off mild and slightly sweet. I like the combination of Virginias and Orientals in this blend. As each bowl progressed the Latakia becomes more prominent and there is some spiciness too. I found John Cotton’s Mild to have no bite at all. While the strength increases a bit toward the end of the bowl, the overall strength is on the mild side. I found this smoke to be very pleasant.
I have no idea what happened to the company, nor any idea why the blend is no lomger available. This was the one I always came back to for an "all day" smoke. It was "old reliable" for as long as I could get it, and I would smoke it still. The blend was listed as MILD, but that may have been a reference to the nicotine content, not the flavor. This was a medium bodied blend of red and gold virginias ith a good prportion of oriental leaf, and an ample quantity of latakia. My memory tells me there was no black cavendish in the blend, and also tells me that the latakia was Syrian. It burned readily, but not hot, with a lively smokey/spicy flavor. I cannot recall it ever getting hot, or wet, or in any other way unpleasant. Rumor has it that Butera's Latakia Blend (#1 or #2) is an attempt to recreate the blend. Must check this out.
Note: this review should have been made under the NEW RELEASE !
'll keep this short, I never smoked the original, but this one is not destined for greatness. The latakia is nonexistent , the Virginias might just as well be also, as they lack sweetness. The Orientals burn hot and flavorless. Overall a very hot burning, flavorless smoke. Won't buy again, almost a one star
a shame that my favourite in Pipe Tobacco has been lost, as i search for it's exact Replacement, i do hope to one Day find this. Westminster by Pease is spot on, and a top hole Pipe Tobacco. I must try any other Recomendations that Others may be so kind to suggest to this old Mann. Pax tecum, Gustav
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