G. L. Pease Sextant

(3.31)
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.

Details

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

Profile

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

Average Rating

3.31 / 4
38

21

6

5

Reviews

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Displaying 1 - 10 of 38 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 24, 2013 Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Popping a young tin of Sextant, the proof-y smell of (un-spiced) rum wafts right up, as expected. Next up is something mentioned by Dr. T (below), that I want to address, namely the Liquid Smoke condiment that some affectionately refer to as "barbeque sauce", which I happen to roundly loathe, almost as much as I loathe propylene glycol. Like Dr. T, I also associate both with McClelland, which partly explains why I mostly avoid that marque. Fortunately, as with GLP's JackKnife Plug, the hated "smoke" scent fades with time. Still, I'd rather do without it altogether. The other tobaccos are pretty much "merged" under the dominant scents, but generally there is a "substance" similar to a medium/full English, tempered and "strengthened" by GLP's deep and mildly pungent signature KY. Moisture is typical for a GLP ribbon, with minimal water(!) as a humectant.

Prep in my dry climate is no more than setting some ribbons in the sun to dry, followed by a careful load with as many of the ribbons as possible oriented vertically. Smoked thoughtfully (best with all GLP blends, IMO), Sextant is Lat forward, and overall it is delightfully fragrant, including the rum. Withal, the Orientals quickly begin to spice things up, at which point I automatically adjust my cadence to taste. The VAs come up about 1/3, accompanied by muted but fragrant incense, and this is when it gets really good. I recommend minimal poking rather than tamping, and if you can smoke it all the way down in one shot, so much the better. The aftertaste is delightful, sort of like Margate Plus, with VA sugar, along with the spice and the strong KY tobacco. Like some other reviewers, I also notice and appreciate the "creamy" mouth feel.

For me, this is a fairly "easy" smoke - for a GLP blend - and it is an easy recommendation for lovers of full English blends who are also ready for the "extras" that Sextant packs. Like other GLP blends, there is a rough-and-ready, tobacco-forward quality that is an acquired taste. As for "strength", I would say Sextant is considerably stronger than medium., like many of GLP's blends that include his KY.

IMO, all GLP blends are best smoked with your brain in gear, and Sextant is no different. Also typical of GLP blends, breathing and cellar time are very good to Sextant.
37 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 03, 2012 Medium to Strong Mild Full Tolerable
This started as an order for Balkan Sobranie. When the notice came that the blend was in stock, I rushed to acquire my share. I usually buy large enough orders to waive the shipping fee, but my two tins wouldn't cut it, so I decided to at least try something new. You really can't go wrong with a Pease blend, and I had recently finished off a tin of Gawith's Navy Flake, so I figured a comparison was in order.

I have to say, that open tin of Balkan Sobranie was very alone for several days while I had my way with Sextant. It took a couple of days to plow through half a tin, and just another to finish it off, I'm sure I set a few personal records. At that halfway mark I was forced to take a day off to recuperate, my tongue nearly destroyed. It was a huge burden, but I made it. The struggle was worth it, as Sextant is my favorite Pease blend since Union Square. It is a sweet, full bodied smoke that can easily satiate one's desire for a nicotine fix.

The note emanating from the tin is pure Rum, rich and intoxicating. I've sampled other Pease blends with alcohol toppings, namely Haddo's, Barbary Coast, and maybe Cairo, if I remember correctly. In my experience the effect burns away at light, or lingers for just a bit, rather than imparting a heavy flavor upon the smoke. Sextant fits that description, it in no way interfered with my smoking. I know there are others with a more sensitive palate, so I will abide by their experiences.

This is the heaviest Pease Latakia mix I can recall, obviously a product of the Kentucky's inclusion. I smoked Sextant at various times before and after a bowl of 965, and I found similar strength profiles. I'm happy to see Greg incorporate Kentucky into the blend as an alternative to Perique, which is also often blended in to build strength. Because I do not have a handy supply of blending Kentucky, it is definitely difficult for me to place the leaf. It would be nice if blending houses made Kentucky available, I'm growing a bit weary of adding Perique to every last blend I smoke. Regardless, I'm thrilled to have my hands on another heavy hitting English like blend, as Nightcap can wear on a person over an extended time frame.

A few weeks ago I finished off a tin of Gawith's Navy Flake. In full flake form, the blend was quite beautiful, as I remember much darker than Sextant. It's a bit lighter, very medium in character, and also quite excellent, but the two are very different smokes. Sextant is notably heavier, and much sweeter, perhaps owing to a higher dose of Rum, but also the choice in Virginias, which play the main part. Sextant seems to push the Latakia and Orientals to the background and yet the mixture feels robust and very well balanced. Gawith blends can arrive water logged, especially those with a topping, and Navy Flake was absolutely soaked upon flipping the tin. Sextant arrives at a perfect moisture, there's never any fuss from packing to lighting and smoking through to the end. The blend showcases Greg's skill in such immaculate presentation.

I'm curious where Sextant will take us...will there be more adventurous blending experiments in the future? Different toppings, more blends with Kentucky, different sorts of cuts? I'd like to put in a request for a Lakeland like blend--a high quality aromatic with traditional British toppings. Russ has been playing this hand, I want to see where it goes.

Having departed from my ship, I'm left with an open tin of the new Balkan Sobranie. It feels so light...and boring. Time to order another ticket to sea.
28 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 06, 2012 Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant
This tobacco is definitely not my style. The initial aroma and flavor reminds me of Haddo's which is not a favorite by any means. Yet this is a delicious blend! Earthy, rich, primitive in some ways, it seems to hearken back to a day when real men traveled by sea and land and needed something in their pipe to keep them alert to the dangers.

The Kentucky was the first thing I noticed. In that regard, there are some similarities here to the recent Jackknife and Triple Play blends from the house of Pease. The rum is noticeable in the aroma and the initial light, but thankfully it fades to the background and whatever it adds to the flavor thereafter is good.

It gets richer as it burns, and some complexity starts to peak through the earthiness. Vary the temperature and you'll find some toastiness, some Virginias sweetness, and some smokiness, although the Latakia is lurking far in the background according to my taster.

This is quite different from the rich English blends coming from Pease of late, which, while delicious, seem to be variations on a theme. Sextant is a departure from the formula and I think he nailed it. It ought to age wonderfully, which is why I took the risk and bought several tins out of the gate.
21 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 22, 2012 Medium to Strong Medium Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Sextant is a delightful hedonistic easy smoking tobacco.

Presentation is in soft flakes which are easy to fold in or rubout. It lights easily, burns easily but slowly and is very good tempered - my tongue is a bite magnet but it has not nipped it in one and a half tins (generous 2oz tins not skimpy 50 gram Euro tins).

Sextant settled to its potential over several smokes giving a complex flavour - while not sweet it evoked the lovely dry plums you get in Germany in autumn, the sloes of English hedgerows and some lemon notes contrasting with spicy peppery flavours (possibly peppers, chilli, star anise - I am not well up on spices) mixed with some herby, grassy earthy notes. While it sounds a bit complicated the tastes are very integrated and the effect is very elegant like a fine wine in a great year.

Is the latakia noticeable? No, there are no campfire or creosote notes and, although the effect of latakia is noticeable in coolness, elegance and some toasted notes unless you are clinically allergic to latakia you could enjoy this mixture.

Is it an aromatic? No, the flavours are much more complex than a rum flavoured tobacco. Having said that I have no idea what category it is, if any, but certainly none I have come across - Dunhill had a rum cased English mixture with flake (My Mixture 620) but that was sweet and nothing like as complex - so I suspect only its maker can settle its category.

Warnings? My second tin was more recently manufactured (dated 030912) and needed 4-5 weeks air for the fruit flavours to kick in - it was originally just very spicy savoury even evoking chinese pork. But, like so many fine tobaccos patience was rewarded with a great full smoke.

Will I buy more. Reader, I have and I will unless you clear the shelves first! This is a wonderful, easy smoking, substantial, fun filled but complex mixture that I can not recommend highly or widely enough. Should appeal to those who love traditional flakes, aromatics, semi-aromatics, virginias, VaPrs and all sorts of mixtures (English, Balkan, Baltic) whether as an all day smoke, an evening smoke or a change of pace.
13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 26, 2015 Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant
G.L. Pease-Sextant. A gift from heaven!

I wasn't too sure how the blend would appear in the tin. How 'broken' will the flakes be? Well, not too broken up as most of the pieces are still in flake form, small but still flakes. I find the term broken flake can be misleading: Sometimes a broken flake can be practically an almost ready rubbed mix yet sometimes, like this, you can still easily identify the flakes.

They're all superbly moist: Not damp nor too dry.

The aroma from the tin is divine, slightly woodsy, slightly smoky and a little grass like. In fact, I enjoy just opening the can for a smell it's that nice! Surprisingly I can't identify any rum.

This lights up brilliantly. Although the flakes were still pretty intact from the tin they've already started to crumble a little making it easy to rub and fill with.

The flavour of the smoke.... wow. It's not your standard Lat' bomb. The Latakia gives a mild sort of woodsy note albeit nowhere near as smoky as your usual Lat' blends.

I find the other tobaccos are about equal in taste. A grassiness from the Virginia complimented by a good almost nuttiness from the Kentucky. All the way through a bowl the Oriental offers its more unique piquancy.

After a while I begin to notice a sort of extra sweetness, not a 'false' kind but a natural one, almost like honey. This becomes slightly more noticeable the further down the bowl I get.

Again, as in the unlit aroma, I detect no rum. I think even if it is present it would be masked by the full tobacco tastes.

The nicotine is quite strong in this. Not a proper head spinner but maybe too much for some smokers.

I find this a definite four star blend.

Highly recommended.
Pipe Used: Davorin Devovic Morta
PurchasedFrom: Gauntleys
Age When Smoked: New
12 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 15, 2015 Mild Extremely Mild Mild Very Pleasant
Now this was an interesting mix. I got a really nice smack of Latakia combined with the other leaf and it was terrific. I am a big fan of Burley, and the Kentucky in this one offered a little extra backbone, which I enjoyed. The rum presence was discreet and Mr. Pease used just enough to enhance the overall presentation. Pipestud
10 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 10, 2014 Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong
There are a lot of superlatives contained in the reviews before this one. Terms like "hedonistic," "adventurous," and "glorious" have been tossed about quite a lot, and I have to admit that I see where they are coming from. Sextant is one of Pease's most unusual blends, a genre-busting experiment like Haddo's Delight and Cairo.

When I open the tin the first thing I detect is the sweet aroma of rum, followed by latakia and a little spice. Upon first light, the flavor is almost all rum….but that only lasts for a few seconds. The alcoholic topping swiftly recedes into a background note, which is where it remains for the rest of the smoke, providing a rounded sweetness. The latakia is obvious but never overwhelming. I can detect the Kentucky, as well. But what steals the show here are the virginias and orientals, which provide a consistently evolving series of spicy notes that make this blend….well, damn near exciting to smoke. It's also quite easy to smoke, with good burning qualities and very little tongue irritation.

Sextant is a very exuberant, lively blend that really doesn't remind me of traditional English mixtures at all. What it does remind me of is a genre of tobaccos that Pease has not only avoided but publicly disavowed, namely that of the "American English" or "crossover." Examples of this class of mixture are Epiphany, Revelation, Morley's Best, Bald Headed Teacher, Barking Dog, etc. There was a time when you buy something akin to this in every drugstore in America, and both Cornell & Diehl and Hearth and Home have churned out a large number of them in recent years. That's a good thing for me, because unlike Pease I rather like the that type of blend.

Still, I can't call this a traditional "American English" because the inclusion of complex orientals distances Sextant from those aforementioned blends which, while quite delicious, are comparatively simplistic and burley-centric. Sextant possesses a richness those other mixtures can't touch (due to the heavy use of Vas rather than burley as the base) that would probably preclude this from being an all-day smoke. It's almost as though Pease has created an "American Balkan" of sorts. Personally, I'd like to think that other blenders may take a cue from Pease and experiment more in this direction. For the time being, though, Sextant is a one-of-a-kind mixture that I plan on cellaring extensively.
9 people found this review helpful.
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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
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
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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.
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