A day in the life of a Cigar Smoker who also loves his Pipe
By Zach Riley
Hello family, as you guys know I have been writing for the wonderful Stogie Press for around a month now, but I’m not only an avid cigar smoker, but a pipe smoker as well. Today a small crew and I from the Cigar Room Shoals made the short trek to Nashville, TN to see Pete Prevost at the Briarworks Pipe Factory.
For those of you who don’t smoke a pipe, I’m going to give you a brief 101 session on pipe smoking, and when I say 101, I mean 101. There is a lot to pipe smoking. There’s a lot to it.
- Packing the bowl correctly
- The pre-light
- The true light
- Smoking the pipe throughout a bowl.
If you get a brand new pipe you have to break it in, or in other words season it. Which this means smoke small bowls and then gradually smoke bigger and bigger bowls until you can smoke full bowls out of it, which can take awhile depending on how much you smoking out of it.
Pipe smoking is still new for me, relatively compared to cigars. I’ve been smoking cigars for five years and smoking a pipe a little over a year, so there are the basics to pipe smoking, or pipe smoking 101. Now onto the trek.
We arrived around 11 o’clock in the morning making great time. Gavin Grantham a friend that works at the shop drove his car and me plus three other people went. We left at about 8:45, so we did really make great time.
We pulled up to the factory, and Gav was telling us:
Don’t expect a huge place, because you’ll be shocked.
So I went in thinking it would be moderately sized, but it was actually even smaller than I thought. I didn’t get an exact square footage count, but it wasn’t large.
We walk in and the president of the company, and founder of Briarworks Pipe, Pete Prevost, greeted us. He showed us a couple of areas that I could not get pictures of, and I will not disclose on this article, and then we moved to the area where the big part of the magic happens.
Where we moved to is in fact where we walked in to, but it was vacant due to the three guys that were working were out at the time, but when we moved back in that part of the factory they were grinding pipes into pristine condition.
We moved from there, to a room that had finished product in it. That product was in the waiting process to be decided if it was to be smooth finish, stained, or rusticated.
The next stop was the hand carving room where they literally do all of their custom work by hand, and depending on the piece it could run anywhere from $400-1000, but that just depends on the pipe and what you want done to it. Most of their regular production pipes run anywhere from $90-400.
After we finished the tour we went up stairs and smoked some of the Briarworks Pipe own blends. I smoked several different kinds. All of them were stupendously good. Rich flavor and great complexity. We also got to pick out a pipe that would be brought to our home shop to purchase. I picked out this beautiful straight bull moose with a black rusticated finish and yellow stem. Just holding it in my hand it felt like such quality. Amazing craftmanship. I can’t wait to pick it up soon.
The difference between a cigar blend and a pipe tobacco blend is immensely different. For one, pipe tobacco isn’t aged as long. Also every pipe tobacco blend I have ever smoked is more one noted, but the note can be extremely complex and diverse, but it’s the same note through the whole smoke. Cigars on the other hand can be the same way, but there are some cigars that are extremely complex, change through the smoke, and the tobacco is aged much longer.
After we did all that we ended up going to eat at a Nashville Hot Chicken place. This was my first experience with Nashville Hot, but it was amazing! So much flavor, and Pete was gracious enough to pay for our group, thank you, Pete!
All in all it was a wonderful day. We all had a wonderful time, learned a lot, and we ate some great food. I look forward to getting my new pipe and breaking it in. I hope you enjoyed this Article! – Zach Riley