G. L. Pease Telegraph Hill

A sturdy foundation of Virginia tobaccos, each chosen for its particular character, is enhanced with fine flakes of perique for a refined smoking experience. Telegraph Hill is rich and flavorful, with a satisfying, lingering finish. Each sip builds upon the last, creating a marvelous edifice of taste and aroma. You won't worry about earthquakes if your pipe is filled with this wonderful blend.
Notes: Telegraph Hill was released in May, 2005.


Brand G. L. Pease
Series Fog City Selection
Blended By Gregory Pease
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type Virginia/Perique
Contents Perique, Virginia
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 2 ounce tin, 8 ounce tin
Country United States
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.40 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 11 of 103 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 03, 2014 Medium None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Using a musical parallel, I consider the english mixtures as symphonic music and Virginia/Vapers as chamber music.

Well, finally i found a Vaper (Telegraph Hill, of course) that's absolutely symphonic in terms of taste and smoking experience. Yes, you've only virginia and perique... but what Gregory obtained is such a thick texture and depth of taste that astonished me...

Of course an orchestra requires a big hall... thus i use my generous ardors so that the experience can last long...

Highly Recommended (this is my absolute number 1 Vaper)

Pipe Used: Ardor
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 10, 2013 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
The Virginias offer earth, wood, fairly deep tangy dark and dried fruit, light tart and tangy citrus and a touch of grass. They form the base of the blend as the main components The perique has a bit of spice, raisins, plums and figs in an important support role. The strength is a couple of steps shy of the medium mark, while the taste is medium. The nic-hit is just past the center of mild to medium. No chance of bite, and it has no harsh or dull notes. Burns cool and clean at slightly slow pace with a very consistent, mildly sweet and spicy flavor from start to finish. Leaves a minute amount of moisture in the bowl. Requires a few more than an average number of relights. Has a pleasant, spicy sweet after taste and lightly stronger room note. A wide bowl seems to work best for this blend. It's not quite an all day smoke, but is certainly repeatable.

63 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 12, 2011 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
What does one write about the best VaPer (IMHO)... the one that replaces Escudo and McClellands St James Woods, not to mention several others?

GLP tobaccos, as a rule, make me work very diligently to unlock their potential. As I like to say, they hold "secrets" that are up to me to figure out. A few of them either have still held onto those secrets or I simply discovered I did not care for them. Many more eventually turned out wonderfully. But rare is the GLP tobacco that hits me with a hammer blow from the first puff and makes me exclaim "Ahhhh... this is IT!".

Telegraph Hill is the consummate VaPer, in my book. The virginias are the perfect base to a fairly heavy dose of perique, not overwhelming, but very very prominent. Fillmore overdosed me with perique and harshness but this one is just perfect. It's mellow but not too mild, it's almost briny as opposed to peppery, and it burns very cool. Because it is so flavorful, I was afraid that this blend couldn't kick back and relax with me, but it does that perfectly as well. I would call this a spicy blend as opposed to a sweet one, but it also possesses a bread-like quality. No hay or fruit. And nothing approaching bite. Never could coax much bite from GLP blends, and this one won't bite even when abused. But smoked in a normal slow cadence, this one delivers what Cope's Escudo and Bell's Three Nuns used to, as well as the old McConnell version of Ashton's Old London Pebblecut. Fantastic blend! I cannot rate this one highly enough. It seems to take a backseat to Fillmore in the popularity arena but I find it infinitely more to my taste. As far as I'm concerned, Greg has mastered the venerable VaPer blend. No need for me to experiment further.
50 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 18, 2006 Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant
This is a quite usual tasting Va/Per that has a very familiar taste - yep, a dozen or so other similar blends are on the market, sine with a much fuller flavor but none quite as deep in the flavor department.

If the Virginia leaf thrown into this blend had more backbone and the flavor more was a little more intense, I might have given Telegraph Hill five stars out of four. I can see where it will tingle the scrotum of many pipe lovers (well, the men anyway.)
33 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 23, 2014 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
Update 2022: I first reviewed this blend nearly a decade ago. In the time that has passed, it has become my about favorite blend, including the many no longer in production.

It is, for me, the very best VaPer a VaPer lover could hope for. The interplay between the Virginia and the perique is perfectly balanced. As age deepens the Virginia and smooths the perique, that balance remains perfect.

Original review from 2014 follows:

The tobacco comes in ribbons, and looks exactly like you'd expect a good VaPer to look. The tin note is bright and sweet with an appropriate measure of spice from the perique (with age, some of the spice gives way to a figgy/raisin aroma, but the spice still hangs around). Tn moisture is ideal for immediate smoking, no need to dry it out. There is no scent of topping or casing, and the impression is that of an honest, quality tobacco.

The smoke itself is excellent. The Virginia isn't "deep" the way it can be - instead, it tends towards the bright and sweet variety with a bit of citrus, and something almost briny about it (in a very good way). The perique isn't overbearing, but it isn't sparse either - the result is plenty of spice, but not enough to overshadow the Virginia underneath. The first quarter or so of the bowl you can taste the component tobaccos individually; from that point on, all of the flavors seem to come together into a cohesive taste and aroma that IMHO is what the ideal VaPer ought to be. The burn is consistent, relights are few and far between, and there's no sog to deal with in the bottom of the bowl.

Some reviews seem to indicate a lack of complexity. I disagree. Smoked slowly a complexity develops throughout the bowl, and by the last quarter there is a fantastic layering of flavors. Here, the VAs begin to deepen just a bit and the perique waxes and wanes.

One note on the perique: age plays a factor here. Make no mistake, the perique plays a "spicy" role moreso than a "dark fruit" role in TG, but with age the spice takes half a step backwards and the darkness comes half a step forward. This changes the experience entirely - young, TG is a bright, pointed Virginia with spicy perique highlights; aged, it is a rounded (and sweeter) Virginia with a bit less spice but an increased depth.

I love it at any age, and will smoke it anyway I can get it.
Pipe Used: Briars, Cobs, Meers
Age When Smoked: Everywhere from fresh to 6+ years
19 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 12, 2014 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Less is more -- Mies van der Rohe

Greg Pease himself has said of Telegraph Hill that "...each sip builds upon the last...". I agree. Like an expensive perfume, a little TH goes a long way for me, and I prefer to sip and sniff this blend meditatively from a small-ish pipe. I have a small pot that renders TH perfectly. Although TH is a fine VA/Per, for sure, it is also about as fine a blend, generally speaking, as I have smoked; simple, yet not so simple; fragrant, almost floral, yet rich with unspoiled tobacco scents and tastes. It's nothing special to look at, broken ribbon bits of various shades of reddish brown with some darker flecks, and a few small stems and veins thrown in at no extra charge. The tin note is well-melded, yielding gracefully to inquisition, generally fragrant rather than piquant, with fig newtons, apricots, and citrus over buttered oatmeal, with a solid-but-deferential VA backbone. I load TH loosely, and it burns OK once it's lit, burning down rather quickly. Lit, the scents play out in earnest, adding caramel, resin-y incense and "exotic" spices, and all of this translates to tastes, as well, along with some sugar, walnuts, and something like faint old Bourbon. The citrus also lends a nice astringency. Smoked gently, there is just a little sharpness from the VAs, and the flavors concentrate and sour some down the bowl, then TH unfurls like a symphony. Strength is mild to medium, significantly less strong than Laurel Heights. I mostly smoke TH outdoors, but still air is definitely the ticket. It smells great to me, but I am aware that Perique often offends bystanders. Aftertaste is a slightly "smoky" version of the smoke that soon fades to a lengthy best-of reverie. Did I mention that TH ages well? Indeed, it does. My stash from the initial release is smoking VERY well now. If you have problems with a young tin, jar it and you will be pleasantly surprised later.

IMO, TH simply nails the VA/Per category. Still, I think it might find favor with any slow smoker who enjoys a subtle and complex VA blend. I say this because, despite the Perique is critically important here, it comes across in a way that's unique in my experience in this particular blend. 4 stars from me, along with a spot on my favorites list.
Pipe Used: various briars; small pots preferred
PurchasedFrom: Liberty Tobacco
Age When Smoked: young to as old as it gets
16 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 23, 2015 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable
This is a good Vaper from a blender of many great blends. I didn't find this to be as sweet as many other reviewers have, but it was sweet enough to create the contrast of spicy and sweet that one looks for when they smoke a VaPer. The perique in this is pretty heavy, but not nearly as heavy as in Fillmore.

I would put this one below Fillmore to my tastes and there are several Vapers that I would prefer to smoke than this one for varying reasons, but I did enjoy my time with it and may buy some more tins to see how they age. I would imagine this would get very good with some age on it and it may push it to four stars in my book. I will report back.

14 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 15, 2010 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This is a mixed review, so let's talk about the two star rating first. I know that there are lots of folks that love almost anything that Mr. Pease has his hand on. I have smoked the majority of his blends and not all, but the majority are in need of aging. There are simply too many better Vapers on the market. This one is somewhat bland and very straight forward.

The second part of my review is based on a five year old tin of TH. In a word, it was OUTSTANDING! Sweet, tangy, more complex with a steady build of perique throughout the bowl. A four star blend all the way. Like many of his blends, the age seems to be the key and as such I have a lot of TH and other Pease blends in the cellar.
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 17, 2013 Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
It seems odd for me to award only 3 stars after so many gushing reviews of GLP tobacco, and it's not that this tobacco is bad - not by any stretch. I think it was just so highly recommended to me, by so many people, that it was impossible to live up to my expectations. Overall this is an excellent, straightforward, quality VaPer. No complaints. Given the choice, I would prefer Fillmore. But this is certainly another excellent VaPer from a true master blender.
11 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 25, 2005 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant
I was really looking forward to this one. At this point I must say that I am somewhat dissapointed. I say "at this point" because I believe the tobacco is too young to be judged fairly. Telegraph Hill is a beautiful tobacco to look at. The perique is in good measure. It just doesn't have the sweetness that I prepared myself for and it can burn a bit hot. I think time will really bring out the potential in this blend. Hopefully I will be able to give a positive update in the future.

UPDATE: I just had to try this again after stoving it a bit. I vacuum packed some of the tobak and then wrapped it in tin foil. It sat in the car under the seat for 2 1/2 weeks in this Texas heat. What an amazing difference! This can't be the same Telegraph Hill that I tried a few weeks ago! My original thoughts were correct. This tobacco is just too young out of the tin to be FULLY appreciated. The taste on the tongue is sugary sweet with just a hint of perique to tickle the nose. It burns cool and smokes good all the way down the bowl. It is a very clean taste on the palate and tongue with no bite whatsoever. If this has changed this much in just a couple of weeks in the heat, its potential is truly great! I have found a new favorite in the tobacco world which is always a wonderful find.
11 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 01, 2019 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
G. L. Pease - Telegraph Hill (Fog City Selection).

Having finished my tin of Penny Farthing I wanted another VaPer on the go. I have a few sealed go to blends of this genre in my cellar but fancied something new. Cue Telegraph Hill!

Mostly brown and yellow ribbons with just a few black specks. They're all medium in size, there's one or two twigs, and the moisture's decent. The smell from it's one of a VaPer, albeit not too bitter.

The smoke scores highly, to me. The Perique is an emphatic flavour, but it isn't as indefatigable or headstrong as it was in Penny Farthing! The Virginias are sapid and savoury, almost doughy and not sweet. Nor to they showcase the often found sharp, citrus, Virginia qualities. Telegraph burns at a medium pace, independently, giving a bite-free smoke.

Nicotine: medium. Room-note: I like it.

Telegraph Hill? A top notch VaPer which warrants four stars:

Highly recommended.
Pipe Used: Peterson Standard System #317
PurchasedFrom: Smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: 12/20/18
9 people found this review helpful.
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