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A tasty five-tobacco blend creates a Balkan worthy of the name. 62.5% stoved Virginias, 21% Latakia, and 16.5% cigar leaf and Turkish offer a sturdy but slightly tamed blend with tons of flavor. Named in honor of the hero of John Buchan's novel "The 39 Steps", the working name of this blend while being perfected was Stoved Darkness, which fits it to a T.

BrandJohn Patton
Blend TypeUnknown
ContentsBurley, Cigar Leaf, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
CutCoarse Cut
ProductionNo longer in production
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Medium, Medium to Strong
None Detected, Very Mild
Medium to Full
Room Note
Tolerable, Tolerable to Strong
2 reviews
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Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28806)
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

From the subtle, dexterous hand of John Patton comes another concoction: JP's standard cigar leaf and virginias, this time with a boat load of Latakia and some Turkish.

The result is an Ohio Balkan -- the usual balkan ingredients with the Patton twist; and what a twist. It starts out mostly Latakia; as you puff farther into it, the cigar leaf and Turkish are noticeable, but the Latakia never really takes a back seat. The virginua must be there somewhere, but in a distinctly supporting role, keeping it lively, and giving the Lat some body, I presume. The result is a fairly harsh, but not biting version of the balkan type, without the rather sweet taste that many balkan / English blends have; probably more like a genuine balkan, in fact. The cigar leaf keeps it rough, balancing out the orientals, and I could swear there was some burley in there, but the notes on this website say no.

Richard Hannay was, of course, born in South Africa, of Scots origin, and lived the life of an outdoorsman. I can imagine him keeping some of this blend in a leather bag in his pocket and puffing it in a worn out briar while on the move. It has that slightly unpolished tang that JP's blends all have, redolent of hard times and adventurous doings.

Altogether a great change of pace, and more complex than Latakia Junction.

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Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28806)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

This is yet another very good and flavorful Balkan by this blender. While it has a fair amount of Latakia, it doesn't overpower the Virginia in the blend. The touch of cigar stays in the background but adds some extra character to the flavor.

Nobody has rated this review yet.