Ashton Artisan's Blend

(3.53)
This full bodied English mixture is carefully crafted for the experienced pipe smoker. Virginia and Turkish tobaccos harmonize with Latakia and a touch of perique to create a taste that is resoundingly rich, spicy and satisfying.
Notes: The tin description and website pipesandcigars.com and smokingpipes.com show that Artisan's Blend has Virginia, Turkish tobaccos, Syrian Latakia and a touch of perique. But according to the Kohlhase & Kopp website, the main ingredient of this spicy mixture is Syrian Latakia, which was rounded off with small amounts of Virginia, fire-cured Kentucky, black cavendish, and perique. Currently, this blend only contains Cyprian Latakia, as the stock of Syrian Latakia ran out.

Details

Brand Ashton
Blended By  
Manufactured By Kohlhase & Kopp
Blend Type English
Contents Black Cavendish, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Perique, Virginia
Flavoring
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country Germany
Production Currently available

Profile

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

Average Rating

3.53 / 4
143

49

19

5

Reviews

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Displaying 21 - 30 of 215 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 17, 2017 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Atisans Blend is a real fine example of how Syrian Latakia should be used. This is a full bodied, full flavored smoke that puts this rare sweet leaf on full display. The tin note is uniquely Syrian: Smokey, sweet and incense like. Very fragrant but not as pungent as it Cyprian cousin.Slightly sour and with a hint of cocoa are also present in the tin aroma. The flavor is sweet and smokey. The Perique provides spice and sweetness in the background that really works well with the Syrian Latakia, it provides some backbone to the sweet and smokey flavors and additional depth. The Turkish/Orientals are woody and a bit sour that also harmonize with the Latakia. I would say the Orientals outshine the Virginia's with the wood and spice notes, but the Virginia's provide a grassy/hay like quality as well as additional sweetness and a toasty hint. The flavors come and go and make this complex smoke extremely enjoyable. One of the best Syrian Balkans I have found, just behind Balkan by Brebbia in my opinion.
Pipe Used: Briar, meerschaum and cobs, Morta and Cobs
PurchasedFrom: Mars Cigars
Age When Smoked: 4 years old
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 12, 2017 Very Mild Medium Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable
When you throw every imaginable kind of tobacco into an "artisanal" blend, you get something very similar to a dish seasoned with all thinkable spices: salt, sugar, pepper, vinegar, cloves and mustard all at once. All this mixed together would taste like dishwasher slop, which is exactly the case here.

None of the particular tobaccos blended into this mixture is flavourful or plentiful enough to give the blend any distinct flavour. That's why it tastes flat and muddy.

To worsen this, Artisan's Blend is generously soaked in that evil "mystery casing" which ruins many other German-made pipe tobaccos.

Waste of money. And waste of the rare Syrian Latakia, a species already extinct in the wild, that will never re-emerge.

I really fail to comprehend how so many people can love it. I honestly and unbiasedly tried to come to like it (I must to, as I coughed up twice as much for this tin than for any other in my collection) and still never succeeded. A kitchensink mess, that's it.
Age When Smoked: 1
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 22, 2015 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong
If you're a Latakia Lover, you'll probably know this tobacco or you should at least check it out soon.

The tin note is already dominated by the peat smoke scent of the Latakia with only hints of incense from the Orientals, whereas I can't smell much of the Virginias or Perique.

The medium cut mixture makes it easy to fill your pipe. In doing so, I prefer the Frank method. After that, usually a quick charring and true light will do the job.

From the first draw, Artisan's Blend will deliver its flavorsome taste with the Latakia and the Orientals leading the way, supplemented by the slight tangy sweetness of the Virginias and the fruity acidity of the Perique. Enjoyed with leisure, it's a mellow and pleasant smoke, which burns down dryly leaving some graying ash.

The room note is also dominated by the smokiness of the Latakia.
Pipe Used: Parker Prince
PurchasedFrom: Local Tobacconist
Age When Smoked: Fresh
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 24, 2015 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong
Artisan\'s Blend is a wonderful blend. The Lat. is upfront and delicately smoky. I also get a creaminess that reminds me of buttermilk used in pancake mixes or the like. Not buttermilk straight out the the jug but used in something. The VA\'s add a sweet but not too sweet nuance that is similar to a bread like sweetness that is very complimentary to the creaminess that I assume comes from the orientals. The perique adds a little spice but really is there for the body of the blend itself. Puffed slowly these flavors will build and change ever so slightly and makes this blend complex enough that you must focus on it fully. I also would say that this blend should be smoked in a meer. to get everything there is out of it. I tried it is several briar pipes and in all of them I noticed a muting of the flavors. Additionally, while I enjoy lat. blends in large wide bowls I have found that there is enough complexity that this needs a mid bowl (still wide if possible, think Dublin shape) otherwise my palate is overwhelmed and I lose some of the complexity in a larger bowl. Finally, this blend cannot be pushed. You must smoke it slowly keeping the pipe cool. If it is pushed I get a smokey, pepper, peculator coffee that has been boiled too long flavor that does not do justice to all that this blend is.

On a side note for future tins. This tin came with shinny paper between the tobacco and the tin lid instead of the normal cardboard found in most blends. It seems to have some kind of smell, another blend I had sampled similarly used this paper and the blend took on this smell (Tin was much old, however). This did not, however, I would recommend for long term storage that the blend be removed from the tin and aged in jars, just my opinion for what it is worth.

**Update** I have just finished my first tin without the Syrian Lat. I received this tin in December of 2017, so this has 6 years on it and should be in its prime. The profile has changed as one should expect, still a very good blend the lat. is more forward now and does overpower some of the other elements a little. It is still a 4-star blend but not in my special category any longer. It's worth trying if you love lat.
Age When Smoked: About 1 yr.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 01, 2015 Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Extra Strong
** I am upping this to 5 stars, Artisan's is a true modern classic. When this is not manufactured anymore it will command $100 a tin. I really suggest buying a ton of tins and stashing them. With the supply of Syrian Latakia drying up this will become a treasured treat in a tin one day in the near future!!**

Out of the 165 reviews I have written over the past ten years, this is by far the most stinky blend I have ever had the pleasure of reviewing (in a good way). It's a mix of potent Syrian Latakia and Perique with the Virginia's giving a nice slight sweetness to the mix. I have never been married and am single at the moment, therefore I can smoke anywhere I damn please but anyone with a spouse will be kicked out of the room quickly for smoking this anywhere near them. I can just picture the green smoke curling up to a woman's nose like Pepe Le Pew the skunk in a Disney Cartoon. I think it's even heavier and fuller bodied than the velvet hammer Nightcap which is saying a lot but it's also VERY smooth and silky. A perfect before bed indulgence or a cold winter day, contemplating the world tucked away in your mancave smoke. Artisan's competes with Nightcap and Larry's Blend (with Syrian instead) as my heavy hitter English blend and is certainly worth your Dollar (or Euro etc.) and is a must try IMO. Delicious, creamy, spicy and yes...stinky. 4 stars!!
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 23, 2014 Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Unlike its stablemates Dorisco, Wingate and Presbyterian, this is a fairly dark mixture. The tin note is sweet and perfumed with a terpene dominance from the Syrian Latakia.

Burns beautifully to a fine white ash, a genuine pleasure to have in the bowl.

I think there is a substantial proportion of stoved Virginia in this mixture since neither the Latakia or Perique would account for the overall darkness. This stoved Virginia pushes this English blend to the light and sweet side, and, altho it contributes some smokiness, I felt this detracted rather than contributed to the Latakia. There is something of the denied promise to this blend as a result. I felt the tin note should have translated into a stronger representation of Latakia in the actual smoke.

The Orientals are subdued but contribute a pleasing acidity. My body chemistry is, sadly, not well disposed to Orientals and I got some mouth irritation as a result. Obviously this is a personal result not reflective of the quality of the tobacco itself and ymmv.

The perique really is a whisper in this blend. I wouldn't have picked it unless I had been told it was there. It contributes a pepperiness as the bowl progresses.

I am confused by the product description as being for the experienced pipe smoker. I found this to be on the mild and sweet side and it would make a fine crossover blend. All in all a well made tobacco that clearly has its fans, but not my cup of tea as a regular smoke.
Pipe Used: Lepeltier
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 31, 2014 Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable
If this tobacco is trying to be a sort of equivalent to Nightcap, then it has failed miserably. This is like a stronger version of those cross-over english blends like frog morton, trying to be several things at the same time.The tobacco lacks balance and is simply a mess. I would have to say that as far as Ashton tobaccos go, Consummate Gentleman is a better offering.
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 04, 2013 Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong
Forget the tobacco description on the tin. This mixture has Latakia, Virginia, fire cured Kentucky, Black Cavendish and Perique according to the Kohlhase & Kopp website. Now I really wanted to like this Latakia bomb. I usually like strong, pungent and earthy tobaccos. Maybe the old mixture was all that for the experienced pipe smoker but this new offering is disappointing.

The Latakia itself is very shy in the flavor department and works in spades. It is a bitter smoke for the most part that turns harsh for a few puffs then comes back to bitter with the too infrequent Latakia creamy like taste (a topping maybe). It smokes cool to a white ash and no gurgle.

While in Nightcap all the ingredients could be savored, in Artisan's blend you get a charcoal like flavor that could be interesting if it wasn't for the tendency of this mixture to turn bitter to a point that it becomes unpleasant with harshness.

I tried this tobacco with three different pipes, all Latakia mixture dedicated, believing that it was the pipes that were faulty. To no avail, the smoking experience remained disappointingly the same.

Virginia lover
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 05, 2019 Medium None Detected Medium Unnoticeable
I saw some of this at my local brick and mortar pipe and cigar store and was surprised to see that this blend was made with Syrian Latakia. I had thought it had gone extinct like the dinosaurs. The tin note had a nice sweet smell to it with dark and light brown flakes. The tin also was pretty moist. I am not sure how much Syrian is in this blend but I am pretty confident it does not have any Cyprian at least none that I can detect. This one actually does remind me of HH Vintage Syrian. I ordered 5 tins of this on line and had to cross my fingers because the blend of this has changed to Cyprian vice Syrian according to an online retailer. Luckily, I got the Syrian version. If you come across a new tin of this, look at the new label and see if the word Syrian is omitted. I would like to try the new version and do a comparison. Some reviewers have tried this as a replacement for Night Cap. I have not smoked Night Cap recently but do not see the similarity between the two. I really enjoyed this one so it gets a 4 star from me.

Update 12/02/19: I was at the somewhat local pipe store, 20 miles away and they had one tin of this left with the Cyprian Latakia vice the Syrian since the blenders ran out. Me personally if the recipe changes this blend should have its own review category. Anyway, it is still a very good blend but I can definitely tell the difference. This is a sweeter smoking mixture. It kind of reminds me of the Seattle Pipe Club Plum Pudding. Glad I have about five tins of the Syrian stashed somewhere.
Age When Smoked: New
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 29, 2019 Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable
Old dog can't learn new tricks...Artisan's reminds me of Murray's version of Night Cap ..it is good and the Syrian latakia makes flavor profile different from Nigh Cap...these's huge amount of Cyprian plus some wee bit of Syrian...smoky and good. One of my 7 blends that will always end up in my pipes. Commonwealth and Artisan's..good tobaccos...so good that these moronic times won't upset you when you puff these blends.
Pipe Used: Brebbia&Peterson
PurchasedFrom: Local shop
Age When Smoked: Straight from tin
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