First of all, for the sake of clarity, we have to distinguish among four Italian similar blends we have had in Italy over the years: GOLF (State Monopoly) – ARMONIA (partnership between Savinelli and the Italian Tobacco Authority) – GOLF ARMONIA (originally Ente Tabacchi Italiani) – GOLF (Manifatture Sigaro Toscano). These four blends should be the same mixture, but it does not. Let’s see them quickly, one by one.
Back in the ‘70s GOLF was a classic Italian blend composed of Virginia (American and Italian), Burley (American and Italian) and Xanthi (Italian Xanthi).The cut was something like picadura and it was flavored with cocoa, wine must, liquorice and sorbitol. The topping was rum, cocoa, thyme, mint and something like coumarin. The official definition of the blend was: “a flavored and topped Italian mixture”.
Then, back in the ‘80s Savinelli, in agreement with the Italian Tobacco Company, created a new popular blend, ARMONIA, even if not exactly as a replacement for the Golf. The composition was quite the same (Virginia, Burley, Oriental and Kentucky), but the flavoring was completely different (fruity notes and several chemical ingredients). About Armonia you can see the entry.
In the 2000s, subsequently to the break of the partnership with Savinelli, the new blend GOLF ARMONIA was launched. The composition was exactly the same as Armonia, but the flavoring was once again different (probably cocoa with some sweet notes). A sort of “synthesis” between the two previous blends.
Nowadays the new GOLF by Manifatture Sigaro Toscano is the latest version of this strange and unusual Italian mixture. The composition is Virginia, Burley and Kentucky from Tuscany. No Oriental leaves. The flavoring is once again different and it is not declared. Surely there is cocoa and some other ingredients I can not identify. All in all a back to the origins with the Kentucky instead of the Xanthi (the first Golf had a poor personality). So far the story.
Now the review. In my opinion this is a national-popular mixture slightly flavored. A natural tobacco with a hint of casing and topping. Really cheap, tasty, satisfying, with the Kentucky in a leading role. Flavoring is ok (I think it is more topping than casing) and I find very tasty and appropriate the combination between Kentucky and cocoa. Nicotine content is quite perfect. Not for aromatic mixtures’ lovers this blend is ideal for all those who love lightly flavored natural tobaccos. On the whole this is a good example of a light aromatic tobacco (I mean a low flavoring level and not a low nicotine content). In my personal rating system (from 1 to 10) my score is 8 and three stars.
This is a very interesting italian mixture. The composition is: Virginia-Burley-Oriental-Kentucky (I think something like: 60-20-10-10%). The most intense aromatizant is cocoa, with something like honey/sugar. It has two 'burning-phases', when smoked correctly (otherwise, when smoked fastly, it has only the second one): during the first one, the taste is very sweet, with a predominant cocoa taste, and also nutty and caramel notes (they comes from Virginia and aromatizant, maybe Burley); in the second burning-phase, it hasn't more 'body', but the taste turns to something harsher, less flavoring and more natural (the Kentucky comes out a little, but the Virginia remains predominant, and the spicy Orientals come out). It's a good quality tobacco: cheap and tasty (a valid alternative to a lot of Regular mixtures).
La busta dal sapore vintage unica nota bella del prodotto.
All’apertura ci troviamo di fronte ad un ribbon tendenzialmente scuro.
Gli aromi sono tipicamente di un tabacco aromatizzato con spiccati sentori cioccolatosi, di liquore. Non si percepisce il dichiarato Kentuky. Il tabacco è secco il giusto e si può caricare subito. La carica è semplice così come l’accensione.
I gusti? Beh quelli già enunciati alla prova olfattiva, manca il corpo del Kentuky e la fumata è quella di un tabacco aromatizzato, che pizzica e che si scalda subito.
Il corpo è quesi inesistente e solo a metà fumata riesce ad emergere il minimo di Kentuky dichiarato.
Non si riesce a sentire, per quante volte abbia provato la busta il Burkley dichiarato, non parliamo poi degli orientali che sono dichiarati, ma inesistenti.
Secondo molte fonti non sarete altro che il vecchio Savinelli reinpacchettato.
Mancano le note delle vere miscele americane e non ha quel tratto ruvido dei tabacchi italiani.
Solo la nota ambientale alla fine si salva.
A chi lo possiamo consigliare? non certo a chi si avvicina alla pipa, in quanto anche con questo tabacco avrà un fornello rovente ed una lingua salmastrata.
Cosa dire? Forse la MST poteva evitare di creare una miscela Americana per i poveri.
Il mio voto 2/5 stelle. Non lo salva neppure il prezzo in quanto è il più caro fra i tabacchi della ditta.
I would recommend this tobacco for a mid-season, joyful walk with friends. Cocoa-raisin flavours create a balanced mix with burley; little bit of bitter bite at the beginning, but nothing overwelming. Considering the fact that the 40 grms pouch costs only 6Euros, this tobacco is a good price/performance choice.
The tobacco is composed from a Virginia based with Orientals and strengthened by Kentucky and Burley. The cut is a short ribbon - but not shag - regular and with the rigth humidity. The tobacco is slightly flavored (casing only) with dominant notes of chocolate, but there are also nuts, red fruits - like plums and raisins - and alcohol. The smoke is easy - as pack and combustion - with monotonous aromas imprinted by sweetness (from Virginia and aromatization) and the presence of Orientals give a little spicy on the background; Kentucky and Burley only give more strength and body, but the tobacco remains in low levels. This tobacco is recommended to newbies, for the lover of slightly flavored tobaccos, but also in all those case of carefree smokes.
Pipe Used: Savinelli
Age When Smoked: Two weeks
Purchased From: Tabacconist in Italia
Similar Blends: Amphora Original Blend, Park Lane N°7, Borkum Riff Original.
I wouldn't believe it has kentucky inside unless it's written on the pouch. You may not taste any kentucky if you compare Golf with other MST blends (Italia, Forte, Comune)
It's a very interesting mixture though. When you open the pouch, a nice smell of flavor without so many additives welcomes you. It takes its main taste from burley and virginia mostly. Still, it's worth giving some rest because when I first smoked Golf, it was giving me a strange taste as if I was eating raw food. After 3-4 months of simple aging, now it has more balanced taste.
uncommon tobacco for italian kentucky oriented taste. It has plenty of burley and Virginia, poor quantity of kentucky. Hated in my country but not in other countries, for me is a pleasant discover. It smokes easily, it's a good all day, not so expensive (but not so cheap for a national 40 gr. pouch). For me it works quite well, it's a safe place to smoke in alternative of other rough italian tobaccos. Better than similar Mac Baren golden blend
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