G. L. Pease Cumberland

(3.04)
Robust and possessing a subdued sweetness, Cumberland is a delightfully orchestrated suite of American tobaccos, featuring a rare and exquisite mahogany Kentucky, aged in bales for twenty years. Red and matured Virginias establish a theme; the Kentucky and a pianissimo of perique create the variations. Pure, natural tobacco flavors are harmonized by delicate arpeggios and underscored by deep, resonant tones. The coda is lovely and lingering - a perfect finish to a rich performance. Best savored slowly.
Notes: From GL Pease: July, 2012 UPDATE: Just now, I responded to an email from a chap wanting to know when the aged Kentucky would likely run out. I'm a little embarrassed to say we actually ran out of it some time ago. I didn't even know until some months after the fact, and then, I completely forgot about updating the site and the labels, and there you have it. I've since smoked the new KY alongside some of the aged stuff I have in the library, and am hard pressed to tell much difference, straight, and when blended, they're almost totally indistinguishable to my palate, so we can all stop worrying about when Cumberland will go out of production. As long as we can get dark-fired KY leaf of this quality, we can keep producing it. The new stuff has been in use for long enough that I can safely say that if anyone was going to notice, myself included, it would have happened, so there it is. I'll change the labels for the next print run, and scrape the egg off my face. Cumberland was introduced in April, 2002

Details

Brand G. L. Pease
Series Original Mixtures
Blended By Gregory Pease
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type Virginia/Perique
Contents Kentucky, Perique, Virginia
Flavoring
Cut Coarse Cut
Packaging 2 ounce tin, 8 ounce tin
Country United States
Production Currently available

Profile

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

Average Rating

3.04 / 4
63

42

23

17

Reviews

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Displaying 1 - 11 of 145 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 05, 2019 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable
Nice red brown and dark brown tobaccos, in fine ribbon cut. The tin aroma is earthy, sweet, fruity, woodsy, fermented and of course I get hay. I get just a wisp of vinegar too, may be the perique is responsible.

Once lit Cumberland burns cool and its strength is noticeable. The Virginias red and matured are the base components and are always in front, with sweet, fruity, earthy, hay flavors. The Dark Fired Kentucky makes his presence very noticeable more woodsy and earthy than nutty, a little bit toasted, and it’s more than just a condiment. DFK presence is evident through all the smoking experience. The Perique is also evident but a condiment; it adds a pepper and some little plum/figs flavors here and there. Cumberland produces an abundant thick smoke also creamy, sometimes a little bit acid. Half way down de bowl the perique is more evident, and the smoke turns more piquant and a little vinegary/ acidic. To me it’s a medium to strong tobacco, in strength and in flavor, and has a medium nicotine level. It pares well with black coffee. Room aroma is tolerable, beard note it´s ok. I recommend comparing it with Rattray´s Old Gowrie, the have some similarities, and differences, but kind of the same alley smoking experience.
Pipe Used: Clay, Corn Cobs, briars
PurchasedFrom: smokingpippes.com
Age When Smoked: 1 year
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 28, 2013 Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Another masterpiece from Greg Pease, this reminds me somewhat of Haddo's Delight without the topping, and with less Perique. This is a very nuanced tobacco, with layers of subtle complexity in its flavors, and constant change throught the bowl as the sweet and savory notes compete. Tin note is the familiar dried fruits: figs, raisins, dates, layered on a base of leather and gorgeous full, natural tobacco flavors. Cut is natural ribbon, and the bits of veined leaf suggest minimal processing. Moisture content is just right and may be easily smoked right out of the tin. Takes and holds a light well.

The Kentucky here must indeed be well-aged as its flavors are less tangy and more subdued. The flavor profiles are subtle, if a bit hot, with salted nuts layered over dried fruits, and the Virginia sweetness very subtle in the background. There is a sweet & savory foundation to this tobacco that is discrete rather than overwhelming, in sharp contrast to many recent offerings in the Kentucky/VA/Perique mold.

Deeper into the first third of the bowl, some pepper emerges from the Perique, used here truly as a condiment, and compliments the salted nut flavors to create a harmonious, delicate balance of what I would class as subdued, rather than assertive, natural tobacco taste.

As I progress to mid-bowl, the sweeter notes from the Virginia's assert themselves beyond the savory elements, but again, it's very subtle. And short- lived: the delicate pepper and salted nut balance reasserts towards the end of mid-bowl.

I find that the Perique asserts more towards the final third and can be picked up through the retrohale, a treat for Perique lovers. But it's never dominant.

This is a tobacco for smokers who love tobacco: deep, rich, leathery, largely savory, and perfectly balanced against a subtle yet ever-present and delicate sweetness.

Truly an American tobacco classic and a must-try for lovers of Kentucky burley, VaPer and VaBur smokers, as well as those who have enjoyed similar GLP blends. An excellent change of pace from the more assertively cased GLP VaBurPer offerings. Think Haddo's Delight or even Barbary Coast boosted up a notch and absent the plum brandy topping.

Very highly recommended.

(update: I've found this blend to smoke better and really shine in a larger, wide- bowl shape such as a pot or large prince.)
32 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 21, 2010 Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong
Who was that girl in the fairy tale/limerick who was very very good when she was good and horrid when she was bad?

Ok, this was never "horrid" but in all my years of pipe smoking, I've never smoked a blend whose outcome was so predetermined by my mood, the time of day, the food I ate or even IF I ate, the location, and even possibly the phases of the moon. I could never count on this stuff to come through but when it did, it was absolutely sublime! It wasn't consistent at any time. Sometimes it was great first thing in the a.m and sometimes not. Sometimes it was perfect after a meal and sometimes it tasted like soil. 2 oz was not enough to pin down any logic. A most confounding tobacco. This tin was nearly 2 years old.

This comes in a longish cut, deep mahogany color in the tin and smells like a good burley... sometimes! Yes, there's perique and VA in here and yes I occasionally tasted them. But this seems to me to be a good old burley, unabashedly masculine and robust. It just tastes like tobacco. And sometimes other things that shouldn't be in tobacco. I have no clue how to rate this blend other than to split the diff between when it was wonderful and when it wasn't, so 3 stars it is. GL Pease has a knack for making interesting tobaccos that I can't easily figure out. I gotta stock up on this one and do some more experimentation! Cumberland has some secrets.

Updated 7/26/14 - it took awhile and about 4 more tins for me to figure out the proper cadence to smoke this, and it has become a regular in my rotation. Very spicy and robust but with a smooth, lasting flavor. Excellent! 4 stars all the way!
26 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 28, 2014 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable
This is just a great blend for my palate. It presents as a full bodied VaBur solidly on the Bur end of the spectrum. The burley in the form of the Kentucky is the dominant flavor. It is earthy and satisfying. The Kentucky is more nutty and not the spicy you find in something like Superior Round Sliced. There are few notes of slightly sweet Virginia and the Virginia is more present in the last half of the bowl.

The perique is a light touch and is mostly condimental. I pick up a little pepper when exhaled through the nose, and every now and then there is a whiff of plum. There is a complexity here that makes this a wonderful smoke to savor.

This is a solid 4. It is strong, but not so strong as OJK for me. It is probably not a smoke that will be appreciated by beginners. It is very good though with those disclaimers, and you owe it to yourself to try this blend if the description sounds remotely appealing.
25 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 01, 2019 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
The earthy, very woody, rather spicy, mildly floral and lightly sour, lightly nutty, dry dark fired Kentucky is the lead component. The tangy ripe dark fruity, earthy, woody red and matured Virginias are important supporting players, and also provide a touch of stewed fruit. The peppery, rainy, plumy perique is just above being a condiment, but seems a tad more impactful than the percentage added to the mix. The strength is in the center of medium to strong, while the taste level is half a step past that mark. The nic-hit is just past medium. Won’t bite, but has a light rough note here and there, and super fast puffing may get you a little tongue tingle. Burns cool and clean at a moderate pace with a nuanced, reasonably consistent, lightly sweet and fairly savory flavor from start to finish. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and requires an average number of relights. The potent after taste does pleasantly linger a bit, and the room note has a little pungency. Not an all day smoke, and I wouldn’t use a big bowl for it either. Three and a half stars.

-JimInks
21 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 13, 2013 Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant
Can't add much to what has already been said about this outstanding blend. One of my absolute favorites.
14 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 07, 2005 Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable
I have been wrestling with this tobacco for a couple of months now and am only halfway through the tin. I must say that this tobacco has the steepest learning curve of anything I've ever smoked, surpassing other heavy hitters like Nightcap, Haddo's Delight and 1792 Flake by a mile. After the third or fourth smoke, I actually made myself ill by smoking this too fast. I also ruined the cob I was smoking this in (no biggie there but still, it takes something wicked to actually decomission a quite forgiving cob). When smoked too fast, Cumberland has a tendency toward the most pucker-inducing bitterness, an experience akin to a mouthful of alum powder. It must be the aged Kentucky, as nothing I've ever encountered in any tobacco has been this volatile. However, this is factor a double edged sword. The other edge that I assume belongs to the aged Kentucky is a very delicious and unique herbal/floral flavor that ties the whole blend together. This tobacco gets noticeably better with each passing week of being opened, and is getting easier to smoke. I agree with those who suspect it will do well with age, and will buy a couple tins to cellar. Nevertheless, after only a couple months of being open it is already quite tasty and relatvively smokeable. I don't mind tobacco being a puzzle, and Cumberland has been an intriguing one. It is growing in my esteem each time I smoke it and already earns an 8 out of 10, despite its volatile nature. Recommended, with a word of caution: Even if you are a Mr. Macho Pufferman like I am, this blend will kick your arse if you don't treat it with respect. Take the time to unravel Cumberland properly and you will likely find the end result to be most enjoyable.

*Update: It's a couple months later and the tin is almost gone. Cumberland has become what is perhaps my favorite tobacco blend. It has all of the qualities I look for in a tobacco: the right amount of bite/astringency (woodiness as I call it), good nicotine kick, natural tobacco flavor and plenty of complexity. The difficulties I expressed in the above review are no longer an issue now that the tobacco has dried out a bit. I am going to buy several tins and age them, ASAHP. Spectacular stuff!
13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 06, 2016 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable
Most tobaccos IMHO improve with age and for me, this is especially true with Pease/ C&D Virginia blends. I have several that I struggled with that I am revisiting and Cumberland (tinned 7/08) is the third one of the four of them. The others being Fillmore, Cairo, and Laurel Heights. Given the amount of Burley in this blend, a leaf with little sugar, I didn’t have high hopes for much improvement. Boy was I wrong! The tin note is a little woody, tangy, lightly sweet and slightly sour. The Burely to me is more earthy and “woody” more than nutty. The red Virginia offers a little tang and has sweetened as have the mature Virginia. The Perique adds a little bit of pepper. Cumberland burns cool and the combination of earthy and sweet is simply delicious. There is a little more acidity toward the end of each bowl, but it’s not a problem. The Burley asserts itself a little more in the later stages of the bowl. It’s moderate in complexity to my taste. The nicotine level, meaning strength, is for me somewhere between medium to strong, and fully strong if pushed. I tend to be picky when it comes to Burley, but Cumberland has won me over. I now wish I had aged more than a couple of tins. So far, this little experiment has proved to be a pleasure.
Age When Smoked: 8 years
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 13, 2009 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Cumberland by GLPease will intrigue you with an arpeggio of Virginias, graced by an appoggiatura of spicy Perique riding, with each puff, on pedal tones of a rare and exquisite mahogany Burley aged in bales for 20yrs. As Big Daddy Pollitt would say, "Bull!"

The Va's, which should be singing in chords, not arpeggios, are too assertive and sharp, if not downright bitey. As for the Perique, like any seasoning, if you can taste it clearly enough to identify it, you've probably used too much. Nothing subtle here! To me this tastes rather stale, at times acrid, and musty in a bad sort of way. Its apparent popularity is a triumph of marketing hype and the power of suggestion. It's a case of "the emperor has no clothes."

Here's what I imagine happened. A wholesaler whose operating capital has been tied up in rejected leaf for 20 yrs., and on which he has paid annual inventory taxes, offers it to Pease at a huge discount. "What would I do with it?" asks Pease. The wholesaler suggests giving it a fancy name like "Mahogany" and mixing it with sharp Va's and a palate-numbing dose of Perique. Put it in a fancy tin; call it an "artisanal" blend; charge an arm and a leg; and watch 'em lap it up!

Reviewer 'Briarabbit' nailed it earlier: if the Burley had been at all good to begin with, it would have been scooped-up long ago. So why now, just at 20yrs? Think about it. Being low in sugar, Burley doesn't benefit much from any kind of aging. I doubt that a wholesaler, whose job is to move inventory, would intentionally hold back quality Burley, hoping for improvement, duh, for 20 years! To me it's all a lot of marketing hooey.

There are plenty of good American style tobacco blends out there, and this isn't one of them. 20-year-old doo-doo is still doo-doo.

Cumberland gets 1 star for rough edges, poor balance, and unpleasant taste.

Mr. Pease gets 4 stars for chutzpah.
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 30, 2004 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
This tobacco was one I was curious to try, yet based upon reading other reviewer?s comments, I was cautious. Upon recommendation of a trusted tobacconist who smoked it often I purchased a 2 ounce tin. I had smoked perhaps 5 bowls of it and couldn?t make up my mind about it. This same tobacconist when questioned later advised that I dedicate a pipe or two to it and ?stick with it? promising that I?d be rewarded. Though I never have experienced the ?tongue bite? that others reported (and that I secretly feared) I just didn?t ?get it? not understanding the subtle nature of this mixture.

Suddenly, nearly at the end of that first tin it hit me! I was astonished, and proceeded to smoke my way through every remaining tin my B&M had in stock! I now order in 8 ounce bags and I have goals of building up several pounds for aging and enjoyment in retirement!

Appearance: This looks to be about 25% dark tobaccos (Burley and Perique), 20% golden-yellow, 20% red and the remainder is a golden colored. It is varied in cut yet mostly medium ribbon cut.

Tin aroma: This is probably the one of the most complex mixtures I have ever encountered. The Red and matured Virginias and perique are evident, with rich earthy tones and under-currents of fig/raisin and cocoa. Burley is just there under the surface with its characteristic nuttiness. There are high pallet hay-like scents and low deep forest rumblings.

This tobacco is nearly perfect in moisture and I employed the ?Frank method? for packing each review smoke. I smoke this tobacco in either a 1960?s Edward?s Freehand or a well broken in cob reserved for Burley Mixtures such as Cumberland or Edgeworth Sliced. For purposes of this review, I?ve chosen the Edward?s Freehand.

Lighting usually is a single match affair, I find that the ?Frank method? usually eliminates the need for much of a ?lighting tamp?, though once in awhile if I pause or just let the pipe go out, I might have to re-light it. As expected, the initial flavor is very mostly a nice Burley blast with a strong Virginia presence. The Perique seems mostly there as a ?condiment? adding a little pepper and roundness to the rapidly building flavors. I am also greeted with very deep fruity tones from the Virginias and the Burley nuttiness and fuller body in turns. There is a very slight sweetness to it probably from the Virginias. There is no single way to describe Cumberland, the complexity is subtle yet quite apparent and builds throughout. This is one of a handful of tobacco blends that I wish would keep smoking for hours.

Mid Bowl: Approaching mid-bowl, the fullness tends to build and the flavors mix and match very nicely. I often employ the ?French curve? method of inhaling slipstream smoke nasally. That is not to say this isn?t a very full tobacco, often relaxing me nearly to the point of sleep. I cannot imagine any tobacco blend that would more perfectly define an ?American? taste. This term is probably not very helpful to some, yet to myself (an American) I cannot think of a more descriptive single term. It is NOT English or Danish and definitely NOT an aromatic by any imagining. I suspect custom blenders in the middle 1800?s would have several tobacco blends similar in composition for those interested in American mixtures. The honest straight-forward tobacco goodness shines in this fine blend. The richness of Burley and Virginia are apparent without stoving or other ways of enhancing/altering the way aged tobacco tastes in its most natural form.

Home Stretch: As end of the bowl approaches, I?m absolutely in smoker?s heaven. The fullness and character of this blend have ?widened? to a very full pallet of astonishing subtlety and complexity. The Virginias have deepened to a wine like goodness and the perique keeps it all honest. The Burley has begun to pull its nutty dominance from several feet below the Earth?s surface. This is a heady blend indeed and care must be taken not to over do the puffing rate. I have never experienced the ?tongue-bite? many complain of, however, over-puffing this blend ruins its subtle nature easily.

A truly astonishing blend from America?s premier tobacco blender

Supplemental Notes: If Cumberland does not do it for you, please e-mail and arrange to ship the remainder to me. I will dispose of it properly; I have trouble keeping enough on hand for aging and smoking. Rating for those interested in numbers ****
9 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 13, 2014 Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable
This was a decent enough tasting tobacco, but not great IMO. I have tasted many tobaccos with these components and this one will be very forgettable to me. I enjoyed it more in the beginning, but it got old as time wore on.

My problem with this is that it is just too spicy. There is a substantial amount of perique in it as well as a good portion of Dark Fired Kentucky that has a variety of spiciness as well. The two of these tobaccos severely overwhelm the Virginia IMO leaving it a pile of spice that is screaming for more sweetness or something to dilute it down. I find this a matter of balance and this one just dips too heavy to the spicy side.

I will say that it is much better than Haddo's delight, but that is not saying much. This one was a major disappointment to me as it seemed to be one of those blends I could not help but like. A better pick in this genre is Rattray's Hal O'The Wynd.
8 people found this review helpful.
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