Cornell & Diehl Old Joe Krantz

Ribbon and coarse cut burleys, perique and red Virginia. Shades of brown with the characteristic mustiness of perique.
Notes: Notes from Bob: The blend was named in honor of my grandfather, who was also my pipesmoking mentor and role model. He primarily smoked burleys, like Union Jack and Edgeworth Sliced. I cannot think of a time when I didn't see him w/o one of his beat-up pipes and the aroma of pipe smoke around him. In any case, I was reading the reviews of Haunted Bookshop and Norm Musicant indicated that he liked more red Virginia in his blends. Norm is someone whose opinion I respect. I was still looking for a simple hearty burley blend that could hold my interest all day. So, a new blend.


Brand Cornell & Diehl
Blended By Bob Runowski
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type Burley Based
Contents Burley, Perique, Virginia
Cut Coarse Cut
Packaging 2 ounce tin, 8 ounce tin, bulk
Country United States
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.22 / 4





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Displaying 11 - 20 of 205 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 24, 2008 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
UPDATE TO THE UPDATE 03/04/11: I first was introduced to and reviewed OJK in 2006 and had not reviewed anything for quite a while so I decided to poke my head in and do so tonight. Guess what, OJK is still the bee's knee's and would likely be my desert island smoke. Actually, I think if this were suddenly the only pipe tobacco on the market I would continue to enjoy my pipes without a hitch. Thanks to the Nanny State intervention, a pound of OJK ordered on the internet is now cheaper than a tub of PA locally ($48, are you kidding me!?). This stuff rules. I'm currently kicked back with a Whitehall Grand National full of this mana from heaven, sipping on a cold PBR and listening to Tuesday's Gone. Here's to the KINGS of Codger Burlies, Bob Runowski and Grandpa Joe Krantz! UPDATE: I took a minute to review all my reviews and realized that my ratings seemed a bit inflated with most burley blends, and even a mediocre straight Viriginia receiving a four star rating. In an effort to correct this injustice and perhaps provide a curb as to my honest operational assesment of these tobaccos I have set about updating all my past reviews. Some I chopped down considerably; Old Joe Krantz WILL NOT be one of those. In fact, since my intial review I have probably smoked at least a couple pounds of this stuff and my review today would go up by about 10 stars if that was possible. This stuff and Prince Albert are the backbones of my tobacco rotation and the more OJK I smoke the more it truly shines as a frontrunner. The high perique content (25%) will scare away some people but in my experience everything else counter balances the perique and one hell of a fantastic smoke emerges. OJK is odd in the sense that a tobacco with such a nicotine wallop can be such a silky smooth smoker. If for whatever reason, you are averse to either perique or large doses of vitamin N I can't really recommend this for you but for me it is the greatest tobacco in all of recorded history and I'm serious about that. ORIGINAL REVIEW: Simply put, OJK rocks and is a great all around blend. A VA/PER/BUR, it would seem to have something for everyone it's heavy enough to satisfy the Virginia/English blend smoker and the Burley component makes it very friendly, smooth and smokeable to the burleyphile. This is simultaneously full and heavy but very suitable for an all day smoke. Very tasty, very good, and as others have said just about right in the nicotine department. Great for seasoned veterans and beginners alike. Old Joe will enjoy a permanent place in my pipe hutch seated right next to my old friend the Prince. You owe it to yourself to try this one.
15 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 22, 2014 Very Strong None Detected Very Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Pouch note is heavy with prune, cigar leaf, caramel, and a very faint, almost "minty" smell.

Char and first draw. MAN THIS IS HUGE! Really bold, potent flavors of sungrown cigar leaf, oak, heavy black pepper, and charred meat (yes, meat). The aftertaste left on my tongue and roof of my mouth reminded me of peppered roasted squash/pumpkin and walnuts. An attempt at a retrohale/snork and a french inhale both left me thinking a suckerpunch to the nose would be preferable, or maybe I'm a great big pansy. The snork, however, did open up the earthy flavors I previously only tasted on my tongue after the smoke had left my mouth.

Room note throughout is pretty spot-on with the flavor, roasted walnuts and spicy cigar leaf.

As the bowl progressed, the squash/pumpkin/walnut flavors really grew to be very, very nice... a potent earthiness, mildly sweet, that I'd compare to a warm cup of black tea on a cold day... warming and mellow.

I can see why this is a favorite among so many, there is a lot going on here. I'm not man enough to make a blend like this an everyday smoke (I found it very strong), or even a smoke after breakfast like I did today, but this tobacco seems like it begs me for a glass of smooth bourbon on a cool and quiet Friday night.
Pipe Used: MM legend
PurchasedFrom: Unknown (gifted)
Age When Smoked: Unknown
14 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 08, 2014 Strong None Detected Very Full Tolerable to Strong
One burley to rule them all-- This is the burley that made me love burleys. It's nuanced and balanced in a way that can only be described and transcendent. The nutty burley and musty perique are made for each other. Always burns cool and dry and great for an all day smoke. Arrives smokable and really melds after 3 months or so. Highly recommend.
Pipe Used: Briar Billiard
Age When Smoked: 1 Year
13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 07, 2004 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Appearance: Sort of a rough cut, but not too rough. Mostly medium red and brown with a good percentage of darker leaf.

Aroma: Great nutty Burley aroma right on top, with some sweet Virginia and sour Perique peeking out.

Packing: Packs well in all but the smallest bowls, which need a lighter touch.

Lighting: Lights exceptionally easily, sometimes one match and a tamp with no relight.

Initial flavor: A simple blend to the palate. Just what you expect from the aroma. Lots of flavor, and lots of mouth feel. A perfect balance of the ingredients. Burns readily, but not hot.

Mid-bowl: The Perique really comes on more assertively, with just enough Virginia sweetness to keep in under control. The nutty Burley flavor hangs in there as a strong component, never in the background, but never in total dominance either. Stays quite cool at reasonable puffing rates. I haven't ever gotten it to burn hot.

Finish: Well behaved to the last, burns to a clean dark gray ash with no soggy bottom.

Summary: Although I'm not a "Burley Guy" as a rule, I do appreciate a well made Burley blend as a change from Virginias and Orientals. This is definitely at the top of the genre. Richer in flavor than it's close cousin Haunted Bookshop, which I also love. Another wonderful effort from Bob, the king of the burley blenders.
13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 17, 2014 Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong
Other burley blends are a dingy, Old Joe is a battleship. If Pee Wee Herman is the leading man, Old Joe is Arnold Schwarzenegger. All other Burley blends are a screen door, Old Joe -gates of Iron.

Old Joe Krantz is a strong, strong blend without a hint of sweetness. It may have VA listed among the ingredients but the sweetness is as far as a pig from the moon. I describe Old Joe as Harsh with a deep dryness. It went great with my coffee but I had to add more sweet cream in my mug to balance out the smoke in my pipe. This blend packs a WALLUP in every area. If this is an old school smoke it left me the impression of a tough leather neck marine smoking gun powder and leather. You know how there are different levels of burley for blending? Well this one is the hard nicotine full body version. Now add a good deal of Perique. That's Old Joe Krantz.
Pipe Used: Cob, basket pipe.
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 21, 2009 Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable
I was all set to write a review and I see that 1/2 bowl already said 90% of my thoughts! The only thing I'd add is that the mixing of the various tobaccos seems haphazard. And that those that rate this blend as "smooth" or as a potential "all-day smoke" must have asbestos tongues! I salute those who like this blend, but it sure did nothing for me. Two stars is a gift, and given mostly because I'm just sure that anything from Cornell & Diehl has to be of high quality leaf, even though I could not say so in all certainty.

Try this if you enjoy natural burley taste with one hell of a lot of perique thrown in, and you're not into nuances or subtleties. Yowch!
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 19, 2014 Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Tolerable to Strong
A friend who has similar preferences to tobacco recommended this to me. I got the bulk from Smokingpipes and it was a mostly brown to dark brown bag of coarse cut tobacco with hints of red. It was a little on the dryer side when it came.

I must warn you, this is not a tobacco for someone looking to try something stronger for the first time. OJK is a no nonsense tobacco with a full amount of pure natural tobacco flavor. It packs very easily and lights the same. I can usually get down to the bottom where it burns to a perfect white ash with one match.

One thing I will say that is special to this tobacco is that, in my experience, it starts off very astringent, sharp, smokey and strong. But once you pass the first 1/8 of the bowl, it really mellows out (comparatively speaking). Have a drink at hand for that first 1/8.

There is so much going on here that some may confuse it with lacking depth, nothing could be further from the truth. The VAs run back of forth with thin strips of sweetness while the Burleys and Perique take the larger strides in the smoke. The last 1/4 of the smoke is simply wonderful where all of the flavors start to meddle together providing a truly unique smoke.

OJK in a cob is one of my favorite ways to enjoy this blend. I feel it really helps round off some of the sharp notes and provides the best method of enjoyment.

I find this to be the older stronger curmudgeon brother to burley flake #3.
Pipe Used: Mortas, briars and cobs
11 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 20, 2007 Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable
This blend is so obvious, it makes Britney Spears appear enigmatic. A full-flavored blend cool enough to smoke throughout the day if you have the constitution for this much perique. I think one shred more perique added to OJK would make only the perique noticeable.

Precariously balanced, rich, mildly complex and deep, OJK is something akin to Barbary Coast without topping and half the natural sweetness. This is worth purchasing for the tin aroma alone.

Have no fear of this duplicating Haunted Bookshop. They are alike in ingredients, but quite different in effect. I do not think most aficionados of this genre will fail to appreciate, if not love, this blend.
11 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 30, 2010 Very Strong None Detected Very Full Tolerable to Strong
“OJK,” as it is affectionately known by it's familiars, is well deserving of it's seat in the pantheaon of burley masters. Old Joe Krantz is not a subtle smoke. It's painted in 3 bold stripes of primary colors: Burley, Virginia, Perique. Those stripes serve as the natal flag of fortitude and simplicity.

The tin aroma is a fantastic, leafy potpourri - sweet and perique-y. I don't know the technical term for the type of cut given to the tobacco, but it's smallish, easy to load, and burns well right out of the tin. I like to let it air for a few minutes, though. When it comes to strength, Old Joe Krantz is one cantankerous ol' timer YOU DO NOT want to mess with. Why? Because he'll kick your arse, that's why. And it it'll be embarrassing.

The virginia element is masterfully done, allowing it to be truly a burley feature blend, but definitely providing a high quality sweetness haven into which you can dive if feeling a bit blown over by the burley and perique pistons that drive the engine. I have smoked now about 6 blends that are made up of these same 3 primary components. Of course, each one probably uses different leaf and hopes to achieve it's own identity, but as far as I'm concerned, most of them still stand and shiver beneath the great and looming shadow of Old Joe Krantz.

Now I am a neophyte and every time I say a certain blend is strong, someone else chimes in with, ahh that's nuthin'. Well, if OJK isn't strong I don't know what is. In fact, it's too strong for me to smoke regularly; but I recognize and enjoy from time to time the archetypal burley pipe blend that is Cornell & Diehl's Old Joe Krantz.
10 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 28, 2016 Strong None Detected Full Tolerable
Cornell & Diehl - Old Joe Krantz.

I was expecting this to taste a lot simpler than it does.

The smoke has a fair amount going on in it: the Burley leads, but there's more from the Perique than I expected: a pleasing fruitiness sits just behind the nuttiness. I enjoy that side of Old Joe, but what I don't enjoy is the strange sourness that develops quite quickly, and also the sheer volume of tongue bite. This is exacerbated by the mechanics: damn it burns hot.

The nicotine amount makes it more apt for the mornings rather than the relaxing evening smoke: it is rather strong. And I find the room-note boring.

I've smoked some cracking blends from Cornell & Diehl, but this is possibly the worst.

Not recommended.

Pipe Used: Altinok Lee Van Cleef Meer'
PurchasedFrom: 4noggins
Age When Smoked: One Month
9 people found this review helpful.
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