Cornell and Diehl's Professor is a mixture of Virginia and Latakia tobaccos. When this blend is compared to a contemporary English blend you will notice there is missing Oriental/Turkish, Perique, and any unflavored Cavendish. What you will find is a sweet and rich blend that is easy to smoke. Load up a pipe and enjoy a simple and satisfying traditional two part English Mixture.
Brand: Cornell & Diehl
Blended By: Cornell & Diehl
Tobacco Type: Black Cavendish, Latakia, Perique, Virginia
Blend Type: English
Strength: 3 of 5
Room Note: Tolerable
Amount: 2 oz.
What is in it?
In your tin of Professor there will be a fine ribbon cut with a very few pieces of broken flake. Color is mostly yellow strands, with some brown and even less black. The two components are...
Virginia: The clear majority of this blend is Virginia tobacco. I suspect that Cornell and Diehl is using bright yellow Va. and Red Va. in here. The taste is quite sweet and there is none of the harshness that you would expect from a tin of young and bright leaf. Apart from any taste, the appearance of the blend argues that our blender spent time in mixing at least two types of Virginia leaf here.
Latakia: I know that Cornell and Diehl is using Cyprean Latakia, but this latakia is smoother than some other blenders seem to have access to. There is a thick creamyness to the smoke. Far from tasting like a smoke pit, there is an herbal flavor here that would be easy to mistake for Oriental tobacco.
What does it smoke like?
Professor is a smooth and easygoing smoke. The full interplay of flavors is somewhat subdued in comparison to a strong English blend with all the trimmings. Professor is a blend that is friendly and tasty with very little change in the smoke as you go thru the bowl. If the intention was to make a blend that a piper can have burning while working or reading, then this blend is very well done. The flavor of the Virginia is middle of the road with some dark fruit balancing out light sweetness. The Latakia is a fantastic addition and adds a creamy and buttery dimension to the experience. During the bowl, you will not be surprised by changes that demand your attention. One could call this a background blend; it is east to enjoy even when your attention is elsewhere. I could see a professor enjoying a bowl in his study while reading between classes. I find it interesting that Virginia Latakia mixtures like this one were more common in the market years ago. Many classic English blends were made of these two components, including the original Bengal Slices. Sam Gawith and Gawith& Hoggarth still make some of these blends in England, but many other blends using these components have faded away. This may be closer to a period correct smoke from the Victorian Era than many English blends currently on the market.
How to prepare it?
Admittedly, I like this blend, and the simplicity of preparation is a large part of why I like it. The blend is at the perfect moisture. The ribbons are very fine and I do not see any twigs or larger chunks that need attention. Because of the cut and dryness, there is a lot of flexibility when packing a pipe. Two step, three step, cannonball, Frank method, whatever way you put this tobacco in the pipe you will probably have a nice smoke. I found that I could just place the entire bowl in the tin, and use my finger to scoop some tobacco in, which usually resulted in a good pack. Once lit, the bowl would almost smoke itself it was so easy to keep lit and cool. I usually think of English blends as a sit down and relax smoke, and reserve aromatics and over-the-counter Burley blends for desk and yard work. This may be the easiest smoking English I've ever had, and it has expanded my work time rotation.