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My personal preference:
I enjoy balanced, complex and deep natural tobacco.
Most of the time I smoke Latakia blend (traditional English blend and Balkan) and the basic and robust Burley based blend. Occasionally, I smoke Straight Virginia.
In fact, I don't smoke cased tobaccos and flavored tobaccos. And I rarely smoke the Aromatic including English Aromatic, though I do like the heavy flavoring old fashion British rope from Samuel Gawith and Gawith, Hoggarth & Co.
I think the plug / kake is always better than flake, which is better than ribbon/coarse cut.
I like cool, relaxing, and easy draw smoking, so I prefer natural cobs than regular machine-made briars, except for the expensive hand made briar. My cobs have paired with forever unfiltered stems.
This is User "Virginia Lover" tobacco classification, same to me:
Scottish blend: matured Virginias dominate, small amounts of oriental, latakia for spice condiment. For Russ's purpose, Scottish blend is an English blend with (unflavored/unsweetened) Cavendish added, usually. Dunhill 965 is one of the classic Scottish-type blends.
English blend: latakia dominates, Virginias dominate over orientals. For the note or role ( it's not the percentage of any particular ingredient that matters, but the interplay between the intensities of the flavors and aromas),
Latakia > Virginia > Oriental
Balkan blend: latakia dominates, orientals dominate over virginias.
Latakia > Oriental > Virginia. The name, of course, comes from the superb Balkan Sobranie (a blend which used some of the most outstanding Orientals ever). (Another definition: A Balkan has latakia and orientals, but neither is in the drivers seat)
American blend: burley or Kentucky dominates over the Virginias or orientals. For Russ, if Burley is added in any significant amount it becomes an American/English. In other words, English with Burley. But for me, if the addition of a bit of or a hint of the air-cured leaf is not for base, but for condiments, to add body and richness to the smoke, this blend will still be an English blend. In other words, American blend is not English with condimental/complementary Burley, but English with Burley based.
Burley- The blend will be primarily Burley, and may have other tobaccos added in condimental amounts, but will exhibit mainly the characteristics of Burley, which is usually a nutty and somewhat sour flavor.
Oriental- The flavor will mostly come from Oriental or Turkish tobaccos, with Virginias and/or Latakia (and, possibly, other tobaccos) used for “spice”.
English Aromatic: Like Sillem's - Black.
Virginia- Pretty self-explanatory; a blend which is all, or overwhelmingly dominated by Virginia tobaccos. Sometimes a little Burley or Oriental might be added for balance or to mitigate the sharpness that Virginia can exhibit.
Va/Per- These blends are predominantly Virginia with the addition of Perique. The sweet and spicy characteristics of Perique work very well in combination with the sugary and somewhat acidic nature of the Virginias.
Aromatic: the topping or casing dominates.
Logan's rating system from cigarfederation:
5 Stars AKA "Stock Up" – Purchase multiple 16oz tins for smoking and to age.
4 Stars AKA "Keep in the Rotation" – Purchase enough to keep it in the rotation.
3 Stars AKA "When it is on Sale" – Wouldn't pay full retail but would purchase it on sale.
2 Stars AKA "Only when it is Free" - Would smoke a bowl if it was free and had nothing else.
1 Star AKA "Never Again" - Wouldn't smoke it if it was given to me.
My Rating System:
1 star - I will never buy it: harsh and rough; irritate the nose and throat.
Two stars - I will never buy it: smokable but too much rough edge; lacking depth; flat/dull/boring, spiritless; lacking complex or unbalanced with one dimensional.
2.5 stars - I will never buy it: interesting and nice try for someone, such as Burley bomb/Perique bomb/nicotine bomb.
Three stars - Only when it is on sales, I may rebuy some as excellent rotations.
3.5 stars - I will buy it and require it, but for me, it is not an everyday smoke.
Four stars - I will buy it as an everyday smoke. They perform well at different times of the day (morning, night, reading, after dinner, etc.) I would like to buy more to daily smoke or cellar.
Don't enjoy → One or Two stars (if it's a nice try) Rating
Enjoy + Never to buy → Two and A Half Stars Rating
Enjoy + May Buy again→ Three Stars Rating
Enjoy + Buy again → Three and A Half Stars Rating
Enjoy + Buy again + An all-day smoke → Four Stars Rating
Enjoy + Buy again + An all-day smoke + My top three → Five Stars Rating