G. L. Pease Sextant

Sextant is a classic mixture harmoniously married to a Navy flake. Ripe Virginia tobaccos are first blended with Cyprian latakia, fine Orientals, and a touch of dark fired Kentucky leaf, then infused with a hint of dark rum before being gently pressed, matured and sliced. The flavor is rich, bold and satisfying, the aroma an enchanting interweaving of traditions.


Brand G. L. Pease
Series Old London Series
Blended By Gregory Pease
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type English
Contents Kentucky, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Flavoring Rum
Cut Broken Flake
Packaging 2 ounce tin, 8 ounce tin, 16 ounce tin
Country United States
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.31 / 4





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Displaying 11 - 20 of 70 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 23, 2012 Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
My review of Sextant is based on a rapidly consumed tin from the first distribution about two months ago. If you are not a fan of tobacco with a substantial amount of spirits added to it, you may want to move on right now. Sextant greets the nose with a significant rum smell that didn't drown out the smell of the component tobaccos, but it is dominate. It's a bit too moist right out of the tin and I chose to rub out each bowl rather than leave some of the broken flakes whole. Once rubbed out, the moisture content quickly dissipates. I must admit up front that if I am going to smoke a tobacco with spirits added to it, I want the “Full Monty” if you know what I mean, and Sextant delivers IMHO more than a “hint” of rum. Unlike another reviewer, I found Sextant to be wonderfully sweet and for the first half of the bowl, rum is the dominate flavor, but the component tobaccos are in perfect harmony for my taste. It should make an outstanding blend for cellaring. Sextant offers some complex flavor now so over time it will really shine. I am a fast smoker, a bad habit from my cigar days, and yet I find this blend seems to smoke for a very long time, even when fully rubbed out. I find it works best for me in a small to medium bowl, like a group three. My only complaint with Sextant is that it does seem to become a bit “ashy” to me in the bottom third of the bowl. Is it a big issue for me? No, but it should be pointed out. All in all, this is a great directional turn for Greg Pease and I can't wait to see what a couple of years bring for Sextant! It won't be for everyone, but for my taste it is a great twist on a Navy Flake. Highly Recommended!

NOTE: The rum flavor will decrease quickly after the tin is open for several days and become the "hint" as described.
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 12, 2015 Medium Medium to Strong Medium Strong
I recently added a tin of Sextant to a tobacco order. My notes here follow after having 7 bowls of it over a 2-week period.

The tin note is arresting: slightly sour, with wafts of alcohol, virginia, and smoke. Arresting. The contents were in broken flake form, run through with brown and black leaf. Moisture level seemed on from the start, but I let the open tin breathe for about 24 hours before tasting.

I found the flavours at first light to be odd: astringent and raw at the back of the throat, with very little latakia coming through. After a few minutes, things settle down, and then what I am tasting is a very ordinary english blend, rough around the edges, served up with an alcoholic digestive. This continues on to an unremarkable finish (although relights are memorable). The smell of burnt rum lingers in a pipe long after it has been extinguished.

I'm not seeing (or tasting) artistry here. The blend behaves as if it is green; it is rough and underprepared. Perhaps the use of the dark-fired Kentucky plays a hand, but this stuff also has a marked throat-drying effect on me, and not a pleasant one. Lots of bass notes but little treble, minus the clarinet-like trill of the rum.

I can't recommend this in its current form - simply too immature. It smells remarkably good, and it looks like a quality product, but one-dimensional flavour and lack of integration make it too troublesome to enjoy.

Maybe cellaring will work wonders. The rest of my tin went into a jar.

6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 26, 2012 Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
After reading the posted reviews of this new blend so far, I have to throw in my agreement with quantumboy. In short, this is a medium-strength mixture in which burley plays a dominant role, while the latakia and "hint of rum" are in the far-distant background.

I love many of the Pease blends, and I wanted to love this one all the way to four stars. But I don't enjoy the harsh edge that comes with a blend that's medium-to-full in the nicotine department. Sextant is in that category. It won't make you dizzy -- thankfully, there's no perique, and the burley is well balanced with the Virginias -- but there's still enough nicotine to be decidedly noticeable in the smoke.

I was also surprised -- despite what another reviewer has perceived -- that the rum is so much in the background as to be virtually undetectable on its own. Talking of rum and naming it Sextant made me naturally expect a navy flake. But I don't think it really fits that mold; there just isn't enough rum for it to be anything more than a hint, adding a slightly richer flavor than it might otherwise have. (I would have to say the same of the latakia, as well.) That's not a bad thing. It just wasn't what the label description led me to expect.

Sextant is very well-made, and the tobaccos are top-notch. The broken-flake cut is effortless to rub out fully -- something that can't often be said of more traditional navy flakes. It burns beautifully, usually requiring only a match or two for the entire bowl. It is a truly enjoyable and relaxing smoke -- recommended to anyone looking for a change of pace from latakia-focused English blends or straight Virginias; highly recommended if you especially enjoy a more nicotine-centric blend.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 04, 2014 Strong Mild Full Pleasant to Tolerable
When I opened my first tin of this blend, dated only a couple of months old, the aroma was so strong of dark rum that I though I had opened a black cavendish that was cased with stale beer by mistake. Only after a few minutes I recognized the rummy aroma, but then not one af a fine beverage. The flakes were also too moist and hard to rub properly.

I was far from impressed by the first bowl but half way though it I recognized this was a complex blend meant to be aged. I let the tin air for a few days and the heavy rum whiff subsided, something that was not by the way present beyond a few draws on the pipe. I finished the first tin without shame nor glory but cellared the rest.

After one year the next tin was brilliant. The rum was still present but like a good one that is casked for several years, much more mellow and gentle. The Virgina base came on sour-sweet, the Latakia mild and the fair Orientals delicate. The small touch of Cavendish always as a far reminder. This blend jumped from so-so to a definite keeper and now is a staple of my rotation.

I've hoarded on a new batch so I won't need to open a fresh tin again. My present tin (second to last) is now a tad under three years old and the blend keeps improving the way a good single malt or well aged rum turn after the 12th year in the cask.

On a generous bowl it smokes slow and fresh, complex and familiar at the same time. It never fails to invoke a sea voyage or a diving excursion. Highly recommended to lovers of Latakia blends looking for something new and unique.

Caveats: Age it for at least 18 months, let the tin air for a few days, rub well and pack lightly. This one begs to be assigned a pair of pipes. Really shines in a well designed meer or a cob of fair size.
Pipe Used: Meers, Briars and Cobs.
PurchasedFrom: Cup O Joes
Age When Smoked: 1 to 3 years
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 07, 2012 Overwhelming Medium to Strong Very Full Strong
Well this is an odd bird. First I immediately wondered why this blend was part of the "Old London Series" since according to Gregory Pease's site, blends for the series rely only

"on the natural flavours and aromas of pure tobaccos, without any added casings, sauces or top dressing"


Well this is clearly not the case as Rum flavour is added to Sextant, as stated in the tin! This is odd. Well, Greg has now changed the definition of the "old london series" on his site, so the problem has been discretely "fixed". Sort of. The era of the internet permits that kind of subtle rewriting which goes pretty much unnoticed and certainly was not explained or announced. Perhaps this review will solely document this "change". Perhaps the series should be called the "Postmodern London series" -- it would be a more accurate name for it, but who would get that?

Speaking of history (or the lack thereof), this blend is supposed to be somewhat related to Mephisto -- at least with respect to the addition of rum. But that's about it. I found nothing else linking the two blends, alas.

Sextant is really atypical. Smoking shows this is a cross between an English and a navy flake. Notable elements are: (1) The presence of Burley. And boy, its there! One gets a powerful nicotine kick from this and the tell tale strong, rough and dry flavour pattern of Burley. It feels like that Kentucky burley that one sometimes find in Pease and C&D blends. It is inordinately strong nicotine wise. (2) The presence of Rum. Rum or any other flavouring usually signifies the blend is not an English one, until now I suppose. Here it is subtle, more so I think than Mephisto.

So it is an original blend. Imagine a navy blend with latakia in it! If it were a song it would be one of those poppy rap song that add bits of classic songs (that would be the Latakia, the english side of the blend) to their own (that would be the burely, the rum), I think it is called sampling. Some like it, I find it odd, unsettling. Taste wise, it is uneven though Greg blends the various elements as well as can be.

If you like blends that are odd, out of the ordinary, give it a try. I you are a traditionalist, you might want to give this a pass. I'll give the tins I had purchased to more adventurous friends.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 09, 2018 Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong
IV smoked a lot of this stuff. This is the blend that made me fall in love with G. L. Pease. I do not understand anyone saying the rum flavor was strong. I've bought many cans of this, years apart. But IV never really detected much rum. Usually none. The Latakia is the most pronounced element along with the oriental. Its the first thing you encounter, but it could be scared away by not puffing gently. Puff gently, or you'll be sorry. The idea behind this tobacco is interesting, but ultimately this plays like a strong English, or maybe even a balkin. GL Pease is my favorite tobacco company, and this is my favorite offering from them. Its is the rarely encountered English with good strength. It seems old, in a good way. But it is very spicy. And smoking it twice in one day can leave you with a numb tongue. This blend is definitely complex. It reminds me a great deal of quiet nights. Probably it's wonderful and savory incensiness. I enjoy it's richness and full body, but also it's distinctive salty flavor, that is probably a result of extensive fermentation. This is a broken flake for sure, but the way it all sticks together tells me that it was thoroughly pressed. Enough so that it broke the cells of the plant and all of the juices began to melt together. However this is one of the only tobacco that burns my tongue. I don't care, I love it. I don't really understand the complaints about this blend. After reading some of these reviews I wonder if we were even smoking the same thing. I consider this blend a bigger and stronger version of quiet nights. Their flavor profile is so similar. The rum added to this blend isn't really even a factor. Sextant is strong and potent, spicy and vibrant, rich and satisfying, complex and savory. But you must not puff. This tobacco has to be tasted or sipped. Anything else will ruin the experience, and I think that many of the seasoned smokers here have not smoked this tobacco correctly. Slow burning, even when very dry. I enjoy it in a small corn cob.

Update: 7-23

I stand by everything I ever said about Sexton. And I will add to it this: I think this is one of the most underappreciated blends anywhere, and certainly in the lineup of GL Pease. For me Sexton is right up there with Nightcap. Legendary, one of the greats. If ever there was a tobacco blend that required care and technique, this is it. Because of the burley, this blend must be handled carefully, more so than most burly blends. But it's really the Virginia that adds that full body. However the perfect use of Latakia and orientals in a blend that has clearly fermented quite a bit or what make this unique. Better than english, Balkan. Truly savory and complex. It's probably time for me to buy a lifetime supply.
Pipe Used: Cobs, petersons
PurchasedFrom: P n C
Age When Smoked: New and 3 year aged.
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 24, 2017 Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Tolerable
Sextant is simply brilliant. The addition of Dark-Fired Kentucky brings some depth and complexity to the smokiness of the Latakia. The Virginias are subtle and so are the Orientals, as the Latakia and DFK are very full. Not very complex, Sextant is still very satisfying and could make you crave for it. The rum topping just works wonders by giving this stout blend a sweetness that balances out the components.
Age When Smoked: 3 years 2 months
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 10, 2015 Medium to Strong Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable
I appreciate that all reviews are subjective and I shall make this brief agreeing with much of the analytical reviews that precede this one. As has been said by others below, I really want to like this blend more than I do as it has potential - but that is the problem. Don't get me wrong -this is a nice smoke. But that is all. The problem to my mind is that it is almost too well balanced. I wanted more rum - more latakia - more spice. If I did not have anything else to smoke then I would gladly smoke this. But as long as Gaslight, Westminster, Odyssey and many other of Pease's blends are to hand I would always reach for those first. The skill of the blend in marrying the flavours together is a curse rather than a blessing.
Pipe Used: Mario Grandi
PurchasedFrom: Gauntleys
Age When Smoked: New
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 02, 2015 Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Full Strong
This is an outstanding tobacco. It harkens back to some of the old tobacco of the pre WII era. Rum has always worked well with tobacco and this is a doozy. The dark rum blends perfectly with the tobaccos especially the Kentucky. I am not sure this would age well because the rum might well dissipate and in this blend the rum is the secret ingredient. You want it full and favorable. Without it this tobacco is just nice. With it it is intriguing and exciting. Some tradionalists may not get this tobacco but they will be missing out on some kick ass blends.
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 09, 2014 Very Strong Medium to Strong Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Whoa. This is strong strong stuff.

5 times I have been put on weird street by pipe tobacco, and 2 of those occasions were due to this guy. The Vit N hit I get off this turns my wheel, I now need to be armed with a sweet tea and a stomach load of hearty carbs to guard against the sweats.

Anyway, this is sublime. Its kinda rough, the edges are not smooth at all and its something of a concoction. Heavy hands blended the components and brought it together, big douse of Kentucky, heavy splash of rum (the best rum note of any blends - real, heady and delightful inyourface scent), decent hit of Latakia.

It all comes together very nicely into a dose of oily, dark, murky goodness for a winter's night. I imagine this hearkens back to days when tobacco was the reserve of sailors going to and fro exotic new lands, and back in England when they mashed it all together, the finished product was something like this.

Gives your palate a noticeable film of something that tastes glorious, beautiful aroma, needs a little drying, easily rubbed out, took a few relights, but well worth all the effort.

A real find.

Can only imagine what an old tin of this will do!!
Pipe Used: XXL Billiard Briar
4 people found this review helpful.
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