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SPECIAL
From 22 February to 7 March 25% off the normal price of Strambach Meerschaums, Meerschaum-lined pipes, Calabash pipes, Corncob pipes, Clay pipes
COLIN'S BLOG: ACROSS THE COUNTER
A different taste!

It all started with a question:
“Would it be detrimental to my Meerschaum pipe if I smoked a variety of tobacco blends in it?”

In the world of Pipe Smoking, Meerschaum is considered to be the most neutral material when it comes to questioning the pipe influence on the taste of the tobacco being smoked.
This comment has often been made to me from serious pipe smokers after the introduction of a Meerschaum to their collection.
However, being very porous, any moist condensate will be absorbed and expelled very slowly through the wall of the bowl. This leads to a process described as the “colouring” of the bowl from white, to yellow, to eventually the rich polished dark brown found in old Meerschaum pipes. It may also leave a “ghost” of taste from the tobacco itself.
The effect of the “ghosting” will be greater if the tobaccos are markedly different, eg a heavy Latakia flake compared with a light aromatic Virginia.
If the tobaccos are more similar, and if the pipe is left long enough to dry out completely each smoke may not be as affected by the taste from a previous smoke.

But maybe you are one of those smokers who has found his favourite tobacco, which tastes good and burns perfectly for you, and you don’t really want a different tobacco.
But it would be nice to have an occasional change?
A Meerschaum would be a really good choice.
In a nutshell, its merits are:
Lightness – no strain on your teeth;
Power of absorption – no soggy dottle;
Length of life – indefinite, provided you don’t drop it on concrete;
The purity of tobacco flavours achieved by this rare mineral – meerschaum has a neutral taste; you
experience the taste the blender intended.
Cleaning is simple - just scrape out the bowl with a blunt tool or the back of your pipe knife blade (being careful not to scrape the Meerschaum).
In addition, since there is no build-up of carbon in the bowl, you can smoke a size smaller than usual.

Strambach Meerschaums from Austria.

Strambach MeerschaumsMeerschaum lumps, like briar roots, divide up into blocks of various qualities to make pipes with a range of from ordinary to the very best. We have received our second shipment from Vienna, from the only meerschaum pipe manufacturer in the EU still manufacturing their pipes to the formula developed by the founder in 1904.
Yes they are not as light as the Altinay meerschaums, but the pricing is more affordable.
No fancy hand-fitted case to pay for, and the peg fitment is reliable Teflon, with a push-pull action.
One of the models has a 9mm filter option.

What are the other options for the occasional “change of taste” if you don’t have a Meerschaum?

Let’s look at them:

Meerschaum-lined pipes – made in Italy.

Meerschaum-lined pipesA Meerschaum inner bowl is inserted into a briar bowl – giving the durability and appearance of a briar bowl, with many of the advantages of meerschaum.Meerschaum-lined pipes

Black sandblast filter pipes

Smooth non-filter smaller bowl pipes.

Note: The meerschaum bowl darkens with smoking. If you forget it, you may damage the meerschaum as you scrape out remnants of a nice cool dry smoke. Use the blunt edge of your knife, or a simple pipe tool.

The Missouri Meerschaum (aka the Humble Corncob)

Corncob
These pipes are made from an extra hard, extra-large hybrid of corn which is dried for two years before being dipped in a plaster–based mixture to give the pipe its smooth finish.
It is then lacquered or varnished. As with many modern pipes they offer a 6mm filter option.
Conveniently they don’t need to be “broken in” - just fill it up and smoke it.

The constant ClayThe constant Clay:

Introduced in the 1500’s the Clay pipe was the
unchallenged pipe for the next 250 years.
Why?
– it’s inexpensive, elegant, porous.
It offers a cool smoke, won’t burn out
and it doesn’t affect the taste of the tobacco.


The Calabash

 

The Calabash

 

South Africa’s unique pipe originated in the early 1900’s.
The little Karoo still supplies gourds to the few people in the outside world
who put together the finished Calabash pipe with Meerschaum bowls.
Those made at home have bowls made from plaster of Paris.

 

 

At present we have limited quantities of all these options.
We offer you the opportunity to try one or more at a special price:

From 22 February to 7 March, 2018
25% off the normal price of
Strambach Meerschaums, Meerschaum-lined pipes, Calabash pipes, Corncob pipes, Clay pipes

Beat the rush – secure for yourself a change of taste in a future smoke with your favourite blend.
Your smoking pleasure is our business.

Colin Wesley

No.422 February 15 - 28, 2018

Note:
By law, no South African citizen, living in South Africa can buy a tobacco product via the internet or postal system.  In fact, you may not receive a tobacco product through the post.
In addition we may not receive payment through the internet for tobacco products.
We may only supply tobacco products within the trade – not to private individuals. The fine is substantial
Contact us for help in getting tobacco to your area.

You can read previous articles from “Across the Counter” in The Library.

PS If you can’t visit a Wesley’s Bricks and Mortar, remember that if you’re not completely happy with your mailsale choice, you can always return it for a full refund.

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New Tobacco Control Legislation
       Prohibitions in respect of tobacco products
(5) (a)  No person shall sell, offer to sell, supply, distribute or buy any tobacco product through the postal services, the internet or any other electronic media.
(b) The prohibition contained in paragraph (a) does not apply to any commercial communication between a tobacco manufacturer or importer and its trade partners, business partners, employees and shareholders.

ALL IMAGES AND CONTENT © Colin Wesley 2018