G. L. Pease Maltese Falcon

Stylish, dark and alluring. Generous quantities of Cyprian latakia are blended with matured red Virginias, exotic Orientals, and just a little bright flue-cured leaf to offer a deep, full-bodied yet silky smoke with an intriguing sweetness, enhanced by a discreet and mysterious spice. Maltese Falcon possesses an exquisite balance - a wonderful all-day English style mixture.
Notes: Originally conceived as a replacement for the old Raven's Wing, Maltese Falcon quickly evolved into something bigger. It's a rich, bold blend, with excellent body, a beguiling sweetness, and solid structure, ideal for those who enjoy a sophisticated, yet comfortable and refined English-style mixture. Maltese Falcon was introduced in January 2008


Brand G. L. Pease
Series Heirloom Collection
Blended By Gregory Pease
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type English
Contents Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, 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
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

3.25 / 4





Please login to post a review.
Displaying 1 - 10 of 93 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 28, 2013 Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
I first smoked this in a briar and thought this was just a basic English blend. Rock solid English, but no better than 3 stars. Couldn't pick up on the "mysterious spice". I always have better luck picking up delicate nuances of flavor in a cob. I'm close to retiring my briars and going with only cobs for this reason. I stuffed one of my MM Generals reserved for English blends and put the match to it. As usual it made a world of difference. It wasn't until the Latakia went from sharp and rich to smooth and creamy (at about the halfway mark) that I was able to pick up on the "mysterious spice". My brain kept saying "cinnamon" over and over, but I'm not sure that's correct. It's just a bit to faint to positively identify, but it does add a nice complexity that captivates me. This is a wonderful blend that I could easily smoke all day and be completely satisfied.
Pipe Used: Nording freehand, MM General
PurchasedFrom: smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: fresh
50 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 10, 2008 Medium Medium Full Pleasant
The tin that I popped was absolutely perfect in moisture content. The tobacco was packed with appropriate density in the tin (not too loose and having settled).

Some time ago I purchased a new Purdy zulu (based on the that Sixten Will owns). I decided to dedicate this pipe to Maltese Falcon. So I gave the pipe its maiden bowl with the first load of tinned Maltese Falcon.

This tobacco begins with dark chocolate and citrus; the latakia presents itself with confidence but recedes almost immediately as good quality latakia will. The citrus likewise recedes as the Virginia sugars present more sweetness. It is as if the dark chocolate sweetens. The orientals present flavors that are not unlike roasted chestnuts; there is a slightly bitter undertone in counterpoint with the Virginias. These virginias are not quite lemony; they are more like a blood orange to my palate.

Though I took no time to let the tin breathe nor to let the tobacco dry out, I had no undue problem with the burn at all. I think I relit once after the charring light about two thirds through the bowl. I was surprised that I did not experience the taste of charring briar as I smoked this tobacco; this Purdy's bowl was uncoated. From examining the bowl after smoking, it appears that the tobacco burns at a fairly cool temperature, but I am a fairly slow, cool smoker. The bowl ? which is fairly small ? gave me a 45-minute smoke.

I have decided to cellar this tobacco in significant quantities. It is, surprisingly, fast becoming my favorite tobacco. This is surprising because I am primarily a smoker of Virginias. I do love this blend, however.

Full disclosure: I have worked with Greg on marketing and market research for G.L. Pease Artisanal Tobaccos, commencing with the Embarcadero blend. I was creative director and art director for Greg's new logo, and for this new label design that you see with Maltese Falcon. So, it would be disingenuine of me to claim no association or interest. That having been said, I've marketed a lot of products that are not for me. This one, however is one with which I am infatuated ? a happy circumstance.
39 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 09, 2013 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
This is the first proper full on Latakia I've smoked from GL Pease and was looking forward to give it a go, in spite of the price.

The tin design was attractive as always with GL Pease's, I always find those wrappers around the drum well designed, the first smoke is with the eye as it were. The ribbons inside, too, were a nice colour, a rich mixture of lighter and darker browns. The smell was of a sweet smokiness, a nice change from the more creosote-like, if still pleasant, fare usually present with most latakia blends. The ribbons were a little dry but this made packing and lighting all the easier, this moisture also seems right as the burn is even and cool so this seems to be just right. The flavour continues much like the tin aroma, smoky yet sweet. It is a pleasure to smoke all the way down to the bottom and smooth with it, producing a nice, fine ash making clearing out the bowl as easy as the rest of the experience. There is a bit of a nic hit but it's not as strong as I would expect from Mr Pease.

This is a good, strongly flavoured latakia that provides a more than pleasant change from my usual lat blends and look forward to getting some more. A good solid smoke.
Pipe Used: Peterson Killarney 65
PurchasedFrom: Gauntley's of Nottingham
Age When Smoked: 5 months
26 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 20, 2015 Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable to Strong
I finally got hold of Maltese Falcon. I very much enjoy G.L. Pease’s English blends (Renaissance and Westminster being my favourite), so I was looking forward to trying this one. It is definitely stronger than Renaissance and it’s richer and more complex than Westminster, but basically it is a blend along those lines. So if you are not into full-English blends steer clear of Maltese Falcon.

On opening the tin the Latakia is very dominant. However if you let it air a little bit, the luxurious Turkish leaf becomes apparent. Virginias, on the other hand, tend to stay behind, lending some structural support to the blend. This is no Balkan, but rather a stronger, fuller version of a classical English mixture.

It does come slightly dry in the tin and I believe this may taste somewhat harsh to some palates. Personally I believe this is how it is meant to be: strong, “manly”, yet lavishly solar and as Mediterranean as the Falcon it portrays.

Once you light up, it displays a wide variety of flavours: salty, fragrant and mineral all at once. If any “sweetness” is to be found in MF, I’d have to say it essentially comes from the Turkish leaf. What the secret spice GL Pease uses in here is truly a mystery, but it doesn’t hinder in anyway the basic interplay of Virginia/Latakia/Turkish mixture. It burns dry and easily, yet slowly. I can imagine someone like Rudyard Kipling, rather than Tolkien, writing stories whilst smoking this blend. It may be a full smoke, but is also soothing: a quiet yet persistent companion for the entire evening (or morning).

Should comparison to another tobacco be helpful, I would say this is closer to Rattray’s Black Mallory than to Gawith’s Commonwealth Mixture (to which other reviewer compared it). Gawith’s CM seems to me a very good smoke, but it tends to be one-dimensional and monochromatic on account of its composition: basically a lot of Cyprian Latakia and some Virginia. MF, as BM, on the other hand, also carry Turkish and/or other Orientals, which provide a richer and more diverse palate.

I highly recommend this to any pipe smoker familiar with Oriental blends, and who don’t mind a strong and rich tobacco. I’m glad I bought three tins!
18 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 03, 2016 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Maltese Falcone greets the nose with Latakia and Orientals. I prefer my tobacco on the dry side so I let it dry out for a short while. The Latakia is forward at first light, but the blend quickly settles down as the other component tobaccos show themselves with a slightly sweet undercurrent. The burn is clean, and the body is medium to full. My issue is that the blend, while good, didn’t stand out in an already crowded field of English blends. I finished the tin, but didn’t seek open another new one. However, recently I opened a tin from late 2009 and the MF had turned into a wonderful English blend! To my taste, the Latakia maintained most, if not all of its smoky quality, but the Oriental and Virginia component had increased in sweet flavor. The balance was wonderful offering slightly spicy, sweet and smoky English that I found to my liking. There may be an extremely mild topping, but I am not sure. I am very pleased to have stashed away a few tins. It was good then, it is even better now and another year or two…well you get the idea.
Age When Smoked: new and six years
14 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 27, 2008 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
The Cyprian leaf is leathery and the bright doesn't sweeten the presentation but adds character and body. The unique flavor made this interesting to me and the tobacco burns cool and is stronger than mild with a taste that sticks around for awhile.
12 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 11, 2008 Medium None Detected Very Full Tolerable to Strong
After taking some time to get to know this blend (I've just finished my first tin), this has become my favorite tobacco. My previous top three were Penzance, Odyssey and Westminster. This tobacco is better than all three. Its smoking characteristics are just as good as Penzance with a much more full and varied flavor. It burns better than Odyssey, rarely needing a relight, and its Virginias are sweeter and more prominent than Odyssey's. It is rich in Latakia like Westminster, but not as spicy, and it will not bite your tongue no matter what you do, unlike Westminster which can be a bit hard on the tongue sometimes.

Maltese Falcon is an amazing tobacco. I particularly like the interplay between the dark Latakia and the sweet Virginias and Orientals. It is the perfect combination of a tobacco that is easy to smoke and tastes great. Highly recommended.
12 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 05, 2016 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
G. L. Pease - Maltese Falcon (Heirloom Collection).

I've had this in my stash for about six months now, saving it for a rainy day so to speak! But this morning curiosity got the better of me, so I popped it open.

The mixture's dark brown, with a traditional English smell, and mine's perfectly moist. Seeing as the name Ribbon can often be incorrect: chunky, coarse, broken flakes sometimes, it's nice to open one where the term's been applied correctly: the ribbons are about medium in size.

For the initial few puffs I struggle to identify what, if any, extra flavouring's been used. I get only a traditional, Lat-strong, English flavour. At first, the Latakia doesn't push only any extra tastes aside, it also fulminates any chance of the Virginia or Oriental having a piece of the action.

After about a third of the bowl the source of any extra taste still eludes me. I notice more of the other tobaccos, only a bit more, but they're easier to identify at this point. The additive however, still isn't present.

The difference between the first puff of a fresh bowl, and the final puff, doesn't concern any added flavour. The weight of the tobacco adjusts: the Lat definitely calms down, giving the others more room, but any added spice etc still avoids me.

The nicotine's above medium, and the room-note's good.

I couldn't decide the rating at first, three or four? But after a few bowls I've concluded it's a definite four star blend:

Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: Mastro Cascia Freehand
PurchasedFrom: Gauntley's
Age When Smoked: Six Months
9 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 31, 2010 Medium Mild Medium Tolerable
UPDATE: Boy, has this stuff grown on me! Unlike my first impression, this IS a classic latakia mixture. The key is aging, as is so often the case with GLP mixtures. I just finished up a couple of aged tins and the experience was totally different than my initial run.... this is a delicious, complex, and spicy English that is a solid medium in strength and fullness. It's not going to replace Odyssey in my rotation, but this blend is a relatively easy-going feast for latakia lovers. Excellent.

ORIGINAL REVIEW: One might think that GL Pease would have run out of ideas for English mixtures by now. I mean, seriously -- how many variations on "latakia + virginias + orientals + maybe a little something extra" can one man develop without becoming redundant?

Obviously, that time has not yet arrived. Not that Maltese Falcon is any kind of radical departure from other Pease offerings. It is composed of really good leaf (as usual), the components are superbly balanced (again, as usual), and its burning characteristics are decent enough (no surprise there). What makes this one interesting to me is the addition of a what Pease describes as a "discreet and mysterious spice." Is it a topping? A casing? Some odd oriental discovered in a remote Tibetan valley while on a trek to discover fabled Shangri La? Pease doesn't tell us, and I've already given up trying to guess what it is. At times it reminds me of incense (myrh) or even cumin, for crying out loud! Whatever. I will say that there's just enough of this "spice" to cause this tobacco's flavor profile to deviate from that of a typical English mixture. I don't know that this spice is quite special enough to really elevate it above other blends in the crowded genre of Englishes, but hey -- it might just be your Holy Grail.

Is this a classic blend? No, although Pease has blended more than his share of those. Is it a worthwhile stop for English afficiandos? Most definitely. Do I recommend it? Sure -- your mileage may vary, even if I don't plan on adding any more of it to my cellar.
9 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 03, 2013 Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
I've been away from the pipe since early 2008. I divorced around that time and living life in the fast lane for a while I dropped pipes aside from a bowl once every few months. The upside to this is my stash of tins and jarred bulks have gotten some quality age on them. A tin of Maltese Falcon was the last bit of pipe tobacco I bought at that point. My reintroduction was on a night in January 2013 when I popped a tin after my girlfriend quizzed me about my tobacco and pipe collection. I popped a tin of this superb blend and packed a very small Stanwell Legend acorn. Immediately, my adoration for this gentle hobby was rekindled literally and figuratively as the flame ignited the leaves. There is a swirling spiciness to this tobacco- a very curry like sweet spiciness like the Indian Korma or the Thai Panang. To my tastes, the Latakia is here in a supporting role. The tangy orientals and sweet Virginias dominate, switching back and forth at various times as the cardamom, cumin and nutmeg flavors intrigue and delight. My sole complaint is that it's a tad dry, as others report. I've been pouring a tiny amount of Evian in its cap and top of the tobacco in the tin and putting in a ziplock bag to moisten up a bit. Try this stuff!!
7 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.