I was recently asked ”Do only pipe smoking novices smoke aromatics?” by a friend who in fact is a pipe smoking novice. My response was a quick ” Heck no, what makes you think that?” He proceeded to explain to me that he had read many comments posted online about how “real” pipe smokers smoke English and Virginia blends opposed to the aromatic variety, and that he felt sort of embarrassed by the fact that he was really enjoying the aromatic tobacco he picked up recently. I assured him that many, many pipe smokers have enjoyed aromatics for years and that he was not alone in his sentiment of the crowd pleasing aroma that aromatics offer.
After packing a bowl of Sutliff Academy in honor of my friends quandary, I contemplated the idea that maybe there is a negative tone regarding aromatics online. Could I myself have fallen into the classification of pipe snob? Am I guilty of turning my nose up at fine quality tobacco, just because it may be technically classified as an aromatic? I would like to think not. I spent some time looking back at most of the posts on the G+ community page and sure enough, it’s heavily dominated by non aromatic blends. Granted, over time your pallet will develop a taste for English blends that at first may have seemed harsh to novice, but that is no reason to ostracize a fellow brother of the briar for his aromatic preference.
I sent my friend a message simply stating, if you enjoy the tobacco don’t worry about what others think. Don’t be ashamed of what you like, be a trend setter not a follower and eventually others might start to show interest in the tobaccos that you love. Write stunning reviews that make it hard to not want to try the blends you enjoy. In the end , if they still give you a hard time … screw em
From this day forward I propose that we not look down our noses at aromatic tobaccos, but embrace them as a sudo ambassador to the curious potential pipe smoker, drawn to the allure of the intriguing aroma. Let’s be honest with ourselves, most of the positive comments we get in public revolve around smoking aromatics.