I expected a sweetness (added) similar to Clan Shaw's excellent Mountain blend, but neither the tin aroma nor the flavor reveals anything beyond what might be a natural VA/Cav sweetness. I suspect a bit of sweetener, and the room aroma smells too good to not have at least a light top note. Still, the blend isn't at all sticky and arrives at the perfect smoking moisture. Long ribbons of many colors dominate.
A careless light-up caught me with a little tongue heat. Slow smoking for the rest of the bowl resulted in a pretty cool, easy-burning experience.
Smoke begins very tasty, and with some zest in the top range, though a far cry from "true" brights like McClelland 2010. While there is some sweetness, it is subdued, and of a maple syrup character. Predominant impressions are of cumin, non-sweet almond, hay and toasted wheat in the upper and mid-ranges. There is also a steak-like heartiness. I'm not good enough to isolate the Oriental flavor, but I believe it adds a "brown" element to the mid-range, and some richness and depth. The bass note is a consistent medium/light, nice but without complexity. Overall, the tobaccos is pretty straightforward.
There is some nicotine punch to this, though it sneaks up on you. It isn't evident in the fragrant flavor profile.
Shortly past the 2/3ds mark, the flavor and subtle sweetness drop way back, revealing some minor ashy/bitter flavor that was previously concealed. The flavor becomes "just smoke", though the smoke remains creamy and thick. This is a nice tobacco despite this, and quite unique. Consider smoking this in half-bowls, or as the top half of a "parfait" to eliminate the end-of-bowl effects.
Old Timer. Light's easily and burn's down to the bottom of the bowl leaving a very clean ash,without goo. A slight sweetness in the background but just way to mild,to satisfy me. With a name like Old Timer I was expecting more strength and flavour. No big thrill here for me,just way to mundane to the point of being boring. Definitely,no tongue bite with this one,no matter how hard you puff. 3 out of 10.
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