March 2007

Next
Tuesday, March 6th, 2007 - 7:00 PM or
** Meet at X & 0's in Stoughton at 6:00 PM **
Meeting

Club Info & Events

Details of the February Meeting
Well it looks like X & O's went over pretty well and will be the new pre-meeting restaurant until something better comes along. Six of us met for dinner and everyone seemed impressed with the bar/lounge set up. It really is a nice place to sit back and enjoy your favorite spirit while waiting for your friends to arrive. The food was decent and averaged about $10 each and the waitress was even nice enough to give us all separate checks.

The meeting itself was well attended and we all had a great time sampling the three different types of tobacco Ken Collins brought for us to sample and rate. He even brought review sheets with him to do it right. A more detailed account of the results of our tasting is mentioned below.

Our old pal Kenny was in attendance as well and opened up a tin of Solani's Aged Burley Flake. We don't have a review on it but there was enough positive feedback from those that tried it that I brought a sample home to try. I enjoyed my first bowl well enough but would need to smoke a couple more bowls before making my final decision. Its definitely and interesting flake and worth a go.

The 2007 Club Pipe by Joe Skoda
No more orders will be accepted for the 2007 Club Pipe which is being crafted by Joe Skoda of the Hudson Valley Pipe Club. Here is a sketch Joe sent us of his thoughts of this year's pipe. The final product may vary slightly.


click to enlarge

United Pipe Clubs of America
SHPC voted to continue our membership with the United Pipe Clubs of America for another year . UPCA was formed in 2002 with the intention to promote and protect the interests of the American pipe smoking community. A noble cause if I've ever heard one. UPCA has recently revamped their website and is a good resource for finding pipe related events, smoking contests or a pipe club in your area. If you belong to a pipe club that is not a member of UPCA, maybe its time to join. There's strength in numbers and these days we all need to stick together.

Member Contributions

Pipe making: A look back at December's “Hotlinks”   
                                                             
by Tom Martin

If you look back, or perhaps you remember the "Websites Worth A Look" section of the January Newsletter referenced the websites of parkspipes.com, and pipemakers.org for those interested in trying their hand at making a pipe. As a pipe maker into my second year , it just so happened that I had just ordered from each source and was waiting for the shipments to arrive.

From the Pipe Makers Emporium, I ordered an assortment of stains and stems. The PME is also the only North American source for Algerian briar, so I ordered a piece of plateaux as well. From Michael, I ordered an assortment of Italian briar. His grading system , pricing, and quality are superb. Both vendors are personable, knowledgeable, and helpful in their customer relations.

  

During the first week of January the packages arrived. I was excited to take inventory and stock the shelves in my workshop and get busy. I was retooling my shop which , by nature, forced changes to my pipe making process. As a result, I wrecked the beautiful piece of Algerian plateaux, but with the briar from Michael, decided to make a freehand from a large piece of Italian plateaux, and with the $2.00 ebauchon block from Michael, I wanted to make a Dress Black Pot.

  

I am still learning how to make pipes like the pros and am lucky to have Tim Hynick in the club. Every so often he’ll teach me a trick of the trade. For those of you who don’t know a pipe maker, don’t worry the information online is almost overwhelming .
You need only to check out:

Good luck, and as Michael Parks would surely remind you, have fun!

Pipes & Tobacco News & Info

EU May Propose New Legislation to Ban Smoking in Public Places    By Adam Mitchell

Jan. 30 (Bloomberg) -- European Union regulators may propose a bloc-wide ban on smoking in public places, forcing all EU member governments to follow the lead of Ireland and Scotland and face down pro-smoking lobbies.

The EU favors a ban that doesn't exempt establishments such as bars serving food, the bloc said in a policy paper today. Still, it's holding off on proposing legislation to guarantee a smoke-free environment across the 27-member bloc as ``the desirable level of EU involvement in promoting smoke-free legislation is an open question.''
                                                        
[Read More]

Other News & Information for smokers:

Websites Worth A Look

Michael Parks.com
Presently, there are 16 new pipes available in the catalogue. Plus don't forget he carries a full line of briar blocks for carvers of all levels.

United Pipe Clubs of America UPCA
Promoting and protecting the interests of the American pipe smoking community. Take a Look


This Month's Tobacco Raffle

GL Pease Westminster
The very essence of the Traditional English mixture: rich, elegant, refined, and exquisitely balanced. New World red virginias are enhanced with a gentle caress of bright leaf, then lavishly seasoned with rich oriental tobaccos and generous measures of noble Cypruss mountain Latakia.

Solani - Virginia Flake 633
A classic flake with bright Virginias and Perique. This cool, slow burning blend has a natural sweetness and a wonderful room aroma. At SmokingPipes.com, we refer to it as "the Champagne of Virginias". Flake-Cut.


Tobacco Reviews
Although Ken Collins brought in three blends for testing, I only received reviews for two of them. These are G.L.Pease's Westminster and Gawith & Hogarth's Lousiana Flake. Here are the results:

Westminster (Pease)
Westminster is a traditional English blend made up of red Virginias, Orientals and Cyprian Latakia. Overall Westminster received an average score of 3 out of 4 in most of the categories reported on. These included tin aroma, room note, ease of packing, ease of lighting, taste, mouth irritation and humidity level. Of the three that submitted reviews, two enjoyed this blend more than the third. None of them said it was an excellent blend but said they wouldn't mind smoking it from time to time. Westminster received higher marks in the area of appearance, ease of packing and little or no mouth irritation. I believe this blend will age nicely and provide an excellent smoke after its matured.

Louisiana Flake (Gawith & Hogarth)
LA Flake is Virginia Perique blend that has been described as having a nutty/chocolate flavor. This blend also rated an average of 3 out of 4 by 3 reviewers. Its highest marks were with the tobacco smell in the tin and ease of packing. The lowest marks were for taste towards the end and consistency of aroma. None of the reviewers said it was the best blend they’ve ever smoked but two said they wouldn’t mind smoking it from time to time. One reviewer said he thought the first third of the bowl was very good but it deteriorated shortly thereafter.

Since both blends faired pretty well and everyone’s tastes are different, I would definitely recommend giving these blends a try. Thanks Ken for bringing them in.

My Finest Hour       by Richard Frederics

I can’t think of anything finer
than sitting down and smoking
one of my briars.
Bent or straight, Dublin or Apple,
no matter the shape,
it doesn’t really matter.
I add tobacco and light up my pipe.
I once again am enjoying the time of my life.


Dock's Corner

I Love Pipes Shows
There's an almost magical feeling when a pipe smoker walks into a pipe show! After waiting in line and chatting to your pipe club buddies you occasionally get a quick glimpse behind the doors of the hall as an exhibitor you know by name goes in to man his/her table. You know this exhibitor because you've had many enjoyable conversations with them at previous shows. In the "pipe fraternity" there are few strangers. Finally the doors open and you wait in line to pay your admission fee. The person collecting the money greets you and asks how you've been which in the pipe world always means: "what have you recently bought"? After a brief exchange you take in the full scope of the room. From corner to corner you eyes feast happily on table after table of beautiful pipes. If it's an especially good show there's prices in every price range from $50.00 estates to $2,500.00 one of a kind handmades. You eagerly walk around the then crowded room straining to see the promise each table holds. You shake hands with old friends and talk about new pipe related websites you've seen as well as up and coming carvers who you're sure will be the next J.D. Cooke or Michael Parks. Then the buying begins. You look around quickly and take mental notes of pipes you'd like to buy. Then you look around once more just to make sure there's not something you can't live without. Then and only then does your wallet come out... "What's your best price on that Ardor?" you ask. "I'll take that Ferndown," you say thinking the price is too low and feeling like you've really "got one over" on the seller. You then see the other club members and they proudly show you their purchases. One of them ended up buying a gorgeous Walt Cannoy that you would have loved to have had but you're truly happy for them anyway. You buy a few more pipes and some tins of tobacco. You then look into your wallet and discover that you barely have money left for gas. You get out while the gettin's good, say farewell to your friends, load up the car and head for home. On the ride home you see a few bottles on the side of the road and pick them up so you can afford some gum when you stop to fill the car up..... I love pipe shows!!!!!!!

Don't forget.. the March New York Pipe Show is just around the corner. March 10th, 2007. Hope to see you there.


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