Tabac Manil La Brumeuse

Semois leaf is a rich, pure leaf burley tobacco that is grown and processed in Belgium in the Ardennes Valley (Val Ardennais) - think Battle of the Bulge. Highly reminiscent of smoking a cigar, but in a pipe, it is a fascinating tobacco that has been highly regarded in Europe for well over 100 years. From start to finish, the flavor becomes more and more pronounced, giving a reliable and enjoyable smoke. This is the thick-cut version (gross coupe).
Notes: According to the catalog from Le Petit Robin is Coupe Fine/ Thin cut. Réserve du Patron is Coupe Moyenne/ Middle Cut. La Brumeuse is Grosse Coupe/ Big Cut.


Brand Tabac Manil
Series Pure Semois
Blended By Vincent Manil
Manufactured By Vincent Manil
Blend Type Burley Based
Contents Burley
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 100 grams or 250 grams pack
Country Belgium
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.33 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 6 of 6 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 04, 2017 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong
La Brumeuse - evocative name, no doubt, and for anybody regularly visitng Belgium countryside, like I do in any season (for business), is a rather appropriate one. Packaging and labelling are old style and quite fascinating as well. It's a very natural tobacco, no casing, grown and processed with no adictives. These are its most remarkable qualities. Taste? rather flat, no evolution, no complexity. Cigar-like? maybe, but what cigar? no premium, for sure. And why on heart one would choose to smoke a pipe to get a basic cigar taste? It's very dry, it burns fast even sipping at slow pace, Aftertaste is quite persistent, not unpleasant but reminds me of an old style, strong cigarette. I understand people fascinated by supposed "good old times" flavour, maybe boosted by some youth memories of a grandfather smoking on his rolling chair, under the porch; I also understand the repulsion of many adulterated products which, as a reaction, stimulates a "back to the basics" attitude. This is indeed a genuine product , but it's a smoke style - in all respect -belonging to the past. Tobacco manufacturing has been developing in the meantime , tobacco blending has been maybe far too "creative", present industry is many times much after quantity and marketing instead of quality; but all that said, this is a smoke - at its best - intersting; if you're looking for pleasure, taste, complexity and fun then look elsewhere. On the market there are many hi quality products, and if you 're into naturals and straight tobaccos, the choice is still wide.
Pipe Used: Butz Choquin billiard; Castello shape 55
PurchasedFrom: La Tete d'or - Bruxelles
Age When Smoked: fresh and after 1 year cellaring
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 03, 2016 Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable
A fairly dark ribbon cut tobacco that comes as dry as hay. In the packet it has vegetable aromas that might account for the 'barnyard' descriptions that are so common when describing this tobacco. These are not animal smells, but hay and mushroom, a grassy yet fusty aroma.

This packet note doesn't extend to the smoking itself, at least not in my pipe. Whatever this type of tobacco's provenance, it is clearly a burley, and accordingly throws up darker notes, sometimes hinting at cigars, but is not at all complicated. It has a fair amount of bitterness, but none of the cocoa or nut flavours one might expect of a good quality 'straight' burley. If I had only one word to describe this tobacco, it would be: 'acrid'.

There are moments when the occasional sweet and sour note is encountered, suggestive I suppose of fermentation, but these are too ephemeral to challenge the one note insistency of this smoke.

Burns fast, unsurprising given its dryness, and is moderately strong.

I am happy this baccy has survived and is now widely available, and happy too that it has its fans. I am not one of them.

Addendum. I have been trying this in different pipes and the recommendation from other reviewers that it is suited to cobs has struck true for me. I don't think this is a property of the cob material, but rather the easy draw typical of cobs. Just seems like the combination of dry tobacco, packed tight and easy draw allows the tobacco the best 'expression'. While I'm here, the room note of this baccy would be familiar to anyone who has smoked French cigarettes in decades past.
Pipe Used: Lepeltier, MM
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 04, 2015 Extremely Strong None Detected Extra Full Strong
I often look forward to unique tobaccos—and Pure Semois is certainly that, unique. First off, the tobacco came very dry out of it's wonderfully retro package. So dry, it crunched! Upon lighting, the taste of this baccy was simply outstanding. This one was like a cross between a robust cigar and a cup of strong nutty coffee with a splash of 90% cocoa. An awesome taste, but, sorry to say, way, way, way to strong for me. I love burleys, and this one's a good burley, but I hate gettin' kicked in head with nicotine. So, for me, this gave me a four star taste with a one star smoking experience—it verged on making me nauseous!

I suspect this blend will make a good blender, especially for blends that need a boost in the nic department, and, I'll experiment with that in the future, but, in and of itself, I'll not smoke it again.

I wish this one had much less of a kick to it, if it did, I'd like it a lot more.

Keep on Piping!
Pipe Used: Boswell freehand
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 20, 2022 Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
PUR SEMOIS – VINCENT MANIL: One of the most natural tobaccos I’ve ever smoked! There’s nothing in it, not even water, just pure tobacco. Don’t listen to those who smoke it dry: tobacco must be hydrated otherwise it cannot be smoked. It burns like straw and has no texture. I would like to underline that this tobacco is not Burley, but an indigenous tobacco typical of the “Val Ardennais” in Belgium. I don’t know if it comes from Burley, from a common ancient strain, but it is neither Burley nor Kentucky. And that’s for sure. About the taste there’s not much to say. Ideal for natural tobacco lovers but only for them. Not suitable for everyone else. Cigar like? Let’s not joke please! The taste is slightly bitter and not so pleasant. In my personal rating system (from 1 to 10) my score is 6 and two stars (an average between the quality of this natural tobacco and the outcome achieved).
PurchasedFrom: La Tete D'Or, rue de la tete d'or 13, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 22, 2015 Medium to Strong None Detected Mild Tolerable
I appreciate that this is a rare chance to sample tobacco with absolutely no additives. But being an artisan product doesn't make it good. Like some artisan cheeses, salumi, and alcoholic beverages I have tried, it is unique in an unappetizing way. It's taste and aroma are much like a cheap domestic cigar (White Owl, to be exact). I've tried it in cobs and briars and found it a bit better in a cob. Best as a quick smoke break while plowing the back 40.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 30, 2022 Very Strong None Detected Overwhelming Extra Strong
The bag note was quite unique. There’s a tangy sweet hay aroma I associate with Virginias, but also a woody cereal grain aroma like burley along with a tea leaf aroma and a slight cigar must. If you like the smell of tobacco you’ll love this. Curly ribbons that were dry as any tobacco I have ever tried to smoke. Not so dry they crumbled into dust but dry enough to be crispy. Crammed it tight into a small clay pipe.

Immediately on the charing light you’re socked with a heavy flavor and mouth feel like a cigar. Now no cigar I’ve ever smoked tasted like this. Musty mineral mushroom flavor. There’s something else very familiar like a déjà vu but I can’t seem to place my finger on it at first. Whatever it is I don’t care for it but I’m so intrigued that I can’t stop tasting it. Wood ear, or hen of the woods mushrooms. It tastes like mushrooms. This is the pipe weed Gandalf smoked. Tastes like the earth. A musty, mushroom, mineral, wet dead trees in the woods after a rainfall flavor. It’s all so… fascinating. Rather reminds me of how my wet socks smell after hiking. So… if you like that? For me not so much.

Not something I would smoke a lot of but I’m very thankful I was able to try it. I have a few more of tobaccos from Vincent Manil that I look forward to trying. The nicotine is there and it’s strong for me. Smoked very well. It’s dry, pack it tight and smoke it slow. The aroma in the room is strong .

For me, I hated this. However, I can see when some people will fall in love with it. It’s a strong and unique flavor. The déjà vu I spoke of earlier was my socks. Like when I was a kid after playing hockey we would dry out equipment out and forget your socks, not your hockey socks but normal socks, unless you were a savage and skated barefoot, that you forgot in your bag. They would dry out and have that smell. Nostalgic yes! But for pipe tobacco I’ll pass.
Pipe Used: Clay
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