What is the Briar Pack?
The Briar Pack sponsored by, and hosted by Briar Blues is much like the YouTube Pipe Community pipe tobacco tasting group, but much cooler.
It consists of four members who will occasionally get unmarked samples from Briar Blues. They know nothing about the blends. They are to taste them and make a video giving their thoughts on the blend. Possibly even guessing what that blend is.
After all the videos are in, Mike will make a video revealing the identity of the blend and give you his comments.
The first round was sent out and the results are in.
First up is Goatman Stevie. A prolific contributor to the brtv Public Access channel. His reviews are fantastic and is known for his excellent pairings.
Here is his video for round 1
Tobacco Pipes International
Mark from Tobacco Pipes International is not only a member of the Briar Pack his website of the same name is also hosting the results. You can find all the information about the Briar Pack and links at the Tobacco Pipes International website.
As far as the first round goes, here is his entry. Let’s see how close he comes to figuring out what the blend is.
A professional among the group and the first entry to appear on the brtv Public Access Channel.
Doing an extensive review that you can see only on brtv.
The Bearded Welshman
Hitting cleanup on this challenge is none other than the Bearded Welshman. His video is also up on the Public Access Channel. He accepts the challenge and gives a thoughtful review. Light ’em up and watch is video which you can find at this link.
Well done to everyone. Now is the time for the reveal. Mike’s video is at the Briar Blues brtv channel.
Spoiler and Blend Description
Here is the blender’s description of the blend for round one.
Odyssey is huge – the biggest of the Pease blends. It’s loaded with latakia and harmonized by exotic Orientals. Wonderful red and jet-black stoved Virginias provide a perfect counterpoint. Notes: From GL Pease: Ever since I started smoking a pipe, I’ve been in love with the rich fragrance of fine Cyprian latakia.
There’s something warm and comforting about it; the deep blackish brown colour, the fascinating texture of the leaf, the wonderful smells of campfires and leather. It’s an assertive leaf that can be, and often is, easily overdone. If the supporting tobaccos are bold enough, though, and have enough character, something BIG can be produced that still has refinement, elegance, and balance.
Odyssey is big. There’s no doubt it’s loaded with latakia, but that’s much more to it. Exotic oriental tobaccos abound, and wonderful matured red and jet-black stoved Virginias provide a perfect balance, both in the tin aroma and in the flavour of the dense smoke. I worked on this for months, tuning the proportions carefully until it was exactly the blend I was after The first match yields big puffy clouds of beautiful smoke.
The flavour is bold and assertive, but still refined. The latakia’s spice is balanced by the sweetness of the Virginias, and they have a marvelous conversation, while the Oriental tobaccos play Baroque quartets in the background. Or, is it belly dancing music? If you’re a latakia lover, Odyssey will surely enthrall you. The high percentage of dark tobaccos dictate a delicate hand when packing for best smoking.