Dunhill Aperitif

A complex blend of Virginias, cavendish, Latakia and Oriental Leaf. The name 'Aperitif' suggests this well balanced medium mixture should be enjoyed prior to dinner.


Brand Dunhill
Blended By Dunhill
Manufactured By  
Blend Type Scottish
Contents Cavendish, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country United Kingdom
Production No longer in production


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

Average Rating

3.28 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 52 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 09, 2004 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
Like 965, and unlike DURBAR or NIGHTCAP, this has some Cavendish leaf in it.

English Cavendish is not like American Cavendish. American cavendish is made out of Burley, cased. English cavendish is made out of Virginia, pressed, steamed, uncased. It lends a mixture a buffering, velvety element which marries smoothly with the Orientals. Smootheness is of the essence.

965 being a "lotsa latakia" blend, I find the cavendish there a little diconcerting, like putting a bit of sugar into oolong tea. On the other hand, it certainly buffers the possible astringency of some Oriental leaf. This blend has considerably less latakia than 965, and so the cavendish is less surprising.

For me, smoothness is not of the essence. Since I love the natural astringency of NIGHTCAP and DURBAR, I have always tended to leave 965 and APERITIF alone. But they form a very significant flowerbed in the Dunhill garden, and people who like a cushiony, lush latakia~oriental experience will enjoy Apéritif.
44 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 21, 2014 Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
This review is based on the Murray's version. It's not quite as well balanced as the description states, but there's a few things going for it. The Cyprian Latakia is smokey, earthy, musty and woodsy sweet, but at times is subdued by the spice, earth, herbalness, floralness, wood from the lightly sweet and rather sour Orientals. There's a natural citrus sweetness from the Virginias along with some grass and hay notes. The cavendish adds a little sweetness, too, but overall, this is not a sweet blend. There's some bitterness, but no harshness or bite. The strength, nic-hit and taste levels are medium. Burns cool and clean at a moderate pace with very consistent, mildly sweet and fairly sour campfire flavor that translates to the pleasantly lingering after taste. Requires few relights, and leaves little moisture in the bowl. Has a potent room note. A change from other English blends, and appealing to Oriental fans. How the new version that's to come will measure up is something I'm interested to learn.

22 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 06, 2015 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Based on the new Orlik version. This looks a lot like Durbar in the tin but the aroma isn't the same musty, juicy oriental-forward mouth-watering affair. Here the latakia is more to the forefront in the tin note but doesn't completely devour the orientals.

Balance is the keyword for this blend. For some reason, I like to dump latakia blends into English, Scottish or Balkan, but this one is so well balanced that it doesn't really fit into any of them. It may be called a Scottish because it contains Cavendish, but the latakia content is too high in my opinion. I think of this as more of an English, although the latakia content is too low for that, again in my opinion. Hence the problems with pigeonholing. At any rate, in the smoke, no one component ever rose up above the others. It was almost as if it was a single tobacco strain rather than a blend. I wouldn't call this a sweet tasting tobacco, even with the inclusion of Cavendish, nor a smooth tobacco. It had a nice "bite" to it (not tongue bite - more of a flavor explosion with guts) and even its bitterness worked to its advantage. I find this to be one of the better Dunhill blends but it still lacks something... and I wish I could figure out what. Perhaps a sweeter mix of Virginia? Hard to say. It wasn't a creamy smoke like 965, nor did it have that blend's robustness and character. I may have to experiment with this one some more. I liked it and am glad I tried it, but once the tin was empty I didn't have the desire to restock. If you want to complete the Dunhill ensemble of "time of day" oriental blends, this should fit in nicely somewhere between EMP and Durbar.
11 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 21, 2015 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Strong
I regret I didn’t try the old version of Apertif. Never saw a tin back in the late 80’s and early 90’s. I recently ordered a couple of tins from Tabaqueria Xian (a heroic enterprise in a country where pipe smoking is rare and good pipe tobaccos are difficult to come by).

Apertif belongs to a range of three tobaccos originally designed by Dunhill in the mid 50’s to form a day long rotation, starting with Early Morning Pipe and finishing with Nightcap. Theoretically Apertif would be a pre-dinner smoke. It is medium to full but not as strong as to render the palate innocuous to the dining flavours to come.

It is a mixture similar to 965 but, in my opinion, not as strong. It seems that the English style Cavendish is more prominent here than in 965, whereas the Latakia has receded to a bare minimum. Yet there’s enough of it to make it clear this is an English/Oriental.

This is a very smooth and luxurious smoke. Easy to load, it lights up rather easily and it stays lit throughout the duration of the bowl. It seems to be a bit moist in the tin, but in my experience that does not affect the combustion rate. A very good tobacco that should be enjoyable to all English/Oriental blend lovers.
Pipe Used: Peterson's De Luxe
PurchasedFrom: Tabaqueria Xian
Age When Smoked: Fresh
9 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 05, 2011 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Aperitif is another one of the Dunhill blends that Orlik has chosen to leave as a memory with their return to the American market. I am not sure if it was due to lack of demand or lack of available leaf. Either way, like most Dunhill blends Aperitif is made of quality leaf and is somewhat complex for a blend touted as...well, an aperitif. Like most Dunhill blends, Aperitif will offer a good dose of Lady N if smoked quickly. This medium English offers an underlying sweetness to complement its smokey quality. It could easily be an all day smoke. However, I would agree with Claudius below in that its not distinctive, at least not enough to pay big bucks for when my small small stash is exhausted. I would recommend it for lovers of Dunhill blends that haven't had the chance to try it.
8 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 29, 2017 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Surprisingly dry in the tin, even for a Dunhill, which usually aren't too moist to begin with. Good to go from the moment I first opened the tin (but do keep in mind that a week or so of "decanting" opens it up further). Short and thin ribbons in a melange of bright, brown, olive tinted orientals and a little thicker black latakia ensures packing the pipe is the least of your problems. The tin aroma is pleasantly delightful and dominated by sweet fermented fruit and earthy notes. There may be a topping of some sort present, but my nose may be deceiving me, or it's ever so lightly applied.

In the pipe it is equally delightful. Mild, and smooth with a lot of flavour. The main player to my palate is smoky and faintly leathery latakia on a herbal bed of turkish. The cavendish and virginia are noticeably present as well, but of the two the cavendish comes through the most clearly (tastes identical to the one used in 965). The virginia shows itself mainly in the side stream, but unfortunately remains largely anonymous for the most part, or perhaps I should say it melds well with the larger composition and doesn't come through fully until the final third of the bowl. I suppose I wouldn't have minded a little sweeter edge to it either on the whole, but on the other hand, the VA "nip" is nowhere to be found here, something I'm sure will appeal to a lot of smokers prone to bite.

True, it is an obvious variation on the 965 theme, but with enough differences in balance to set it apart. I guess it ultimately comes down to personal preference. As for me, I reach more often for 965 than I do for Aperitif, but it's entirely possible that's because 965 happened to become a staple in my rotation long before Aperitif found its way into my pipes many years later.

Both blends scratch much of the same itch for me, but 965 has the edge when it comes to overall satisfaction after a smoke. As far as recommendations go, I would say try them both and see which one you like the best, or, if you liked a lot of what 965 has to offer, but not everything, you may find what you were looking for in Aperitif, which to me is a little more mellow and perhaps a bit more subdued in contrast to the former. Oh, and the room note is definitely more agreeable as well. Not at all obtrusive or overstaying its welcome. Compared to many english-type blends it's downright pleasant. Overall I give this a solid recommendation.
Pipe Used: Davidoff 109, Parker Super Bruyere
Age When Smoked: > 3 years
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 19, 2014 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
My tins have been bought from a fellow member on pipesmagazine.com and are dated 2007; they are thus an Orlik production. Considering The Apéritif have not been produced since, probably, early to mid 2005, it's probably 9 rather than 7 years old. The thing that stroke me the most when I opened the tin was how much the tobacco stinked. Very smoky, almost too much; and almost sickening. But that quickly vanished. The Apéritif stands apart from the other offerings from Dunhill as it's a Scottish blend. I like to think of it as in between EMP and 965 when it comes to nicotine input; creamier and less sweet than EMP despite the Cavendish; and less spicy than 965. There seems to be more Cavendish than Latakia in The Apéritif and that's ok, as it's a Scottish blend. My educated guess for the Latakia is Syrian as the tin note was not characteristic of the Cyprien. Definitively not a Latakia dominant tobacco, it stands out with its own merits. The cavendish is definitively unsweetened and brings that creamy foundation that characterizes The Apéritif. Then the Turkish unveils slightly spicy notes and the virginia, some sweetness. The latakia will manifest itself occasionnally by adding some smokiness. A very good blend, that is not high in nicotine but remains tasteful and rich from beginning to end. I would certainly recommend it for anyone seeking an introduction to Latakia blends or for anyone seeking a mild Scottish blend. I wonder if STG have Syrian Latakia in reserve if Apéritif contains it; if not, I certainly wonder how it will do with Cyprian instead? I will rebuy when it's available in the USA, as it's been released in the UK a few months ago. To summarize, The Apéritif is a Scottish Blend like none other. Highly recommended. I am very happy to see that Orlik resurrected this one as well as Durbar!
Pipe Used: Stanwell; Rattray; Dunhill
PurchasedFrom: Private sale
Age When Smoked: Between 7 and 9 years
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 10, 2015 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong
Apéritif presents a similar premise to its sibling My Mixture 965: a spicy sweet Scottish blend. It distinguishes itself by over-pronouncing the spice at the expense of the Latakia, which yields and conforms by simply reminding you it is there.

Well presented and easy to pack and smoke. True to its name, it left me hungry, albeit not for a second bowl - this blend gets close to overwhelming if one enjoys more than a group 3 bowl.
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 23, 2014 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
I found this recipe on the web. My Own Blend recipe for Aperitif: 55% Latakia G019 20% Light virginia shortcut G003 10% Oriental G001 10% Black cavendish G010 5% Kentucky G028

The "G000" codes refer to the numbers MOB use for the different tobaccos
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 21, 2017 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This is a medium Latakia-forward blend, well-tempered by the Cavendish and mild Orientals. Like many of the current Dunhills, it's mostly thin ribbons which catch easily and burn a bit on the fast side. Those who want blends with a really strong Latakia presence would be a bit disappointed. Smokers who like the approach of most 'Scottish'-type blends would likely consider it a solid but not outstanding example.
Pipe Used: briars, cobs, and meers
PurchasedFrom: 4 noggins
Age When Smoked: opened 26 months after purchase
3 people found this review helpful.
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