Here at The Pipe Nook, I'm often asked many different questions, but there are some that I'm asked more than occasionally. For some reason, I've not had the brilliant idea to include a FAQ page until today! So without further ado, here are the 10 most asked questions.
1. How much is shipping at The Pipe Nook?
Shipping is a flat $5 fee within the United States, and a flat $15 fee for orders shipped to Canada. If shipping for your order is more than that (which is often the case), I cover the rest. The more you purchase, the more you'll save on shipping, and larger US orders often get upgraded from First Class to Priority Mail, so stuff that cart full! :)
2. Do you ship internationally?
No, at this time I only ship within the US and Canada. International shipping of tobacco and tobacco related products requires much research of an ever-changing set of customs regulations and tariffs that are unique to each individual nation. A small operation such as mine simply doesn't have the resources to keep up with it all. Believe me, I wish I could ship anywhere; it's just not feasible at this point in time.
3. Why don't you ship tobacco to Canada or Florida?
Retail shipping of tobacco products to Canada is prohibited. As for Florida, it's a bit more complicated. I live in the state of Florida, and if I were to sell tobacco to my fellow Floridians, I would also have to charge an 85% pipe tobacco surtax. I refuse to do this, so I've made the decision to not sell tobacco to Florida residents. Keep in mind, however, that I can and will ship pipes and accessories to Canada and Florida!
4. What methods of payment do you accept?
You can pay using Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, or your Paypal Account. All payments are processed by Paypal, but you do not need a Paypal account to pay with your credit card.
5. When will you get more of _______ in stock?
Since I'm a small operation, I sometimes run out of certain things. The biggest offenders are estate pipes, Morgan Bones, Mr. Brog, and Savinelli Series III. I try my best to place reorders at least monthly, so stay tuned, and be sure to sign up for my email newsletter for updates!
6. I'm interested in something you don't seem to carry. Will you do special orders?
I realize my selection is a bit limited for more seasoned pipe smokers, although I do believe there's something for everything here at The Pipe Nook! In fact, I would go so far as to say that the vast majority of pipe smokers could spend their entire lives smoking and enjoying only the pipes and tobaccos that I carry, and not really missing much! There are literally hundreds of brands, pipes shapes and tobacco blends out there, but they are largely variations on a handful of themes. However, if you are interested in a special order of something I don't carry, I will do my best to accommodate your request! If it falls within any of the brands I carry, I'm confident I can obtain it. However, I can also obtain much more outside of those brands, so just ask me using the form on my contact page.
7. What pipe would you recommend for a new pipe smoker?
Anything you see on my site! The Pipe Nook is designed to be a limiter of choice for the new and nearly new pipe smoker. I only carry products that I personally recommend. As such, every brand I carry is what I consider to be "gold standard" products, brands that I feel every collector would do well to have represented in their collection. There's not a pipe on my site that would be "bad" for a new pipe smoker. However, there are two guidelines I would recommend. I would get a filtered pipe first, as filters help alleviate tongue bite, which is the biggest reason people give up on pipe smoking before they really learn how to smoke a pipe. Also, I would recommend that you not spend too much on your first pipe (say, $65 or less), so that if you decide it's not for you at the moment, you can hang onto the pipe and perhaps try again in the future. And if you decide pipe smoking is absolutely not for you, you're not out too much money. A great many pipes on my site fall in line with these two recommendations, including many pipes by Mr. Brog, Missouri Meerschaum, Rossi, Savinelli, and more.
8. What tobaccos would you recommend for a new pipe smoker?
This one is a bit trickier, as it depends upon whether you personally like Aromatics, Virginias, Burleys, Latakia, Perique, etc. Also, are you coming from cigars, cigarettes, or have you never smoked anything before? I'd say that if you really want to get to know what your personal tastes are, you'll need to start with at least 5 different kinds of blends to get your bearings. I wrote a blog titled "What Pipe Tobaccos Should I Smoke?" which can be found here. I go back and update this particular blog from time to time, to include new blends I add to the site. Keep in mind that if a particular kind of blend bites you more than others, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy it. For me personally, certain Virginias tend to nip to varying degrees. Try using a pipe filter to see if it helps; pipe filters make a world of difference for me!
9. I'm completely new to pipe smoking, and have no idea how to do this! Can you help?
I wrote a blog titled "Pipe Smoking 101: How to Smoke a Pipe." This is a 1-Page reference guide that you can print out to help get you started, which you can find here. For those who want to go a bit more in-depth, I created a 25-Part video series on YouTube, which you can find here. It's pretty conversational and low-tech, but I planned it out to be easy to understand and in an order of importance that makes sense, at least to me. I hope you find it helpful!
10. How to I become an expert pipe smoker?
You're definitely asking the wrong guy! It took me nearly 20 years to finally "get it," which is why I've created blogs and videos to help you on your way and not waste the kind of time I did. Beyond that, however, I would say that while there are certain universal tips, pipe smoking is a very personal thing, and what works for one person may not work for another. In addition, pipe smoking is a multi-faceted interest, and I don't think anyone ever truly stops learning. Keep in mind that mistakes are part of the learning process. And as with many of the best things in life, I strongly believe that the journey is more important than the destination. To me, the middle of the bowl is much more enjoyable than the bottom of the bowl. I hope you find as much fulfillment in your times of quiet reflection with your pipe as I do!
Savinelli's Series III Unfinished pipes have been one of my best sellers. That's because they're some of my best smokers! And it doesn't hurt that they're some of the most affordable briar pipes on the market today. But it's no secret that I'm a big fan of 9mm filtered pipes, so I was ecstatic to find that I could special order Series III pipes with 9mm filtered stems! For me, this is a match made in Heaven, and I just couldn't wait to offer them to The Pipe Nook Faithful!
Featuring the same unfinished briar bowls as Standard Series III pipes, the comfortable vulcanite stems are made to accept Savinelli's 9mm balsa filters. They can also be used with 9mm activated charcoal filters, although they will be a looser fit, allowing some smoke to pass around the exterior of the filter. I sell charcoal filters as well as balsa filters in the accessories section, so my suggestion is to try them both to see which you prefer. And of course, you can choose to smoke them without a filter in place, and consider them to be "mini reverse calabash" chambers. Either way, these are incredible smokers at a fantastic price!
Because 9mm Filters provide a drier, cooler, easier to manage smoke that in no way affects the taste of your chosen tobacco, I consider them to be "training wheels" for new pipe smokers. However, because of the benefits mentioned above, I personally prefer to always smoke with 9mm filters in place for those pipes in my personal collection that accept them. I just don't see a downside to them, myself.
I think you can tell that I'm excited, and I hope you're as excited as I am! To my mind, there's no better time than now to pick up a Series III pipe. I've been enjoying my 320 9mm for about a week now, and have been enjoying some of the best smokes I've ever had. Check out The Pipe Nook store for more details, and be sure to look for the "9mm" designations in the item titles. Of course, I also have the standard Series III pipes still available as well!
Keep 'em Lit,
Cornell & Diehl is a company that's been on my radar, and in my pipe, for some time. One of the Great American Pipe Tobacco Manufacturers, Cornell & Diehl rose from the ashes of Atlas Tobacco Company back in the early 1990's. New owners Craig and Patty Tarler worked tirelessly to build what I believe is one of the "Big Two" American Tobacco Companies. Although many of their blends are favorites of mine, many are also too strong for my taste. As such, I've kept away from the "Cornell & Diehl Question" until now. However, I've come to realize that I can't only carry my personal favorite blends, since tobacco taste is so very much a matter of individual preference. But what I can do is select particular brands that I can stand behind, and Conrnell & Diehl is certainly among them!
Another scary aspect for me as a small retailer is that they have so many blends, I just can't imagine carrying all of them! Cornell & Diehl have spent the past 25 years creating a great number of top notch blends. Based in South Carolina, they currently have more than 100 blends! I'll be adding blends as I can, but will be starting with some of my favorites, as well as some popular ones, some "must try" offerings, and new items of interest as they become available.
Cornell & Diehl uses some of the best tobaccos from the US and around the world to create top-notch blends, including Burleys, Virginias, Perique, Latakia, Aromatics and more! There's something for everyone in the C&D line, and I'm pleased to present what I feel is an excellent selection of them here at The Pipe Nook. I hope you agree!
Keep 'em Lit,
Father's Day is nearly upon us! In preparation for next weekend, I'm running a Site-Wide Sale here at The Pipe Nook. From 6/8/2017 through 6/11/2017, use coupon code "DADDYDAYCARE" at checkout, and you'll receive 10% off your entire order! Why DADDYDAYCARE? Well, I just thought it was funny. The coupon code, not the movie. I've actually never seen that movie, so you can tell me if it's worth watching! I'm running the sale this weekend to ensure that all orders received during the sale can be shipped and received in time for the Big Day.
Save on Stanwell, Big Ben, Savinelli, Rossi, Missouri Meerschaum, and everything else in stock, including accessories and pipe tobacco! And if you want Dad to pick out his own gifts to enjoy, you can purchase Gift Cards in the Miscellaneous section under Accessories!
Make sure to take some time out next weekend to spend with Dad. If he's not close by, give him a call and catch up. And be sure to take advantage of this sale, whether for your dad or for yourself...no judgments here! I like to help out my wife with the shopping, at least once a year. :)
Keep 'em Lit,
Greetings from The Pipe Nook! I'm here in the West Parlor of Gray Manor (my garage), enjoying some Gray Ghost by Cornell & Diehl in my Savinelli Impero 321. This pipe has become one of my go-to's! Practically a pocket-sized pipe, it's sort of a "matchbox" or mini version of the 320 shape, and it practically smokes itself. As for the tobacco, the Gray Ghost is a Cigar-Leaf and Virginia blend, and has really grabbed my attention lately. It straddles the line between flavor profiles of a mild cigar and a good Virginia/Burley pipe blend. Fantastic stuff! I'll be carrying it, and some other C&D blends, very soon.
Today, I wanted to announce the addition of a few items I'm now carrying at The Pipe Nook, which have kind of snuck in under the radar without much fanfare as of yet. First up, Kiribi Pipe Lighters. I've always kind of cheaped it when it came to lighters, honestly. And while there's something to be said for a cheap, readily available and disposable lighter like a Bic or a Clipper, there are times when I was smoking a pipe that I wished I had a complementary lighting instrument to the quality of pipe I'm smoking. So recently, I treated myself to a Kiribi Mikazuki ($80 price range), and I've been very pleased with it! All hand-assembled with quality components in Japan, this is a sleek, well-made lighting tool, the best I've ever had by far. The flint mechanism is very smooth, the flame is excellent, and the flip-cap action is highly satisfying! In comparison, I have a much cheaper but similarly styled pipe lighter ($15 range) that I've used for about a year now, which I haven't had any mechanical trouble with; yet this morning when I meant to grab my Mikazuki and accidentally grabbed the cheaper one for a quick re-light, I was immediately concerned. "Oh, no!" I thought..."What's wrong with my Kiribi?" When I looked down and realized I had the wrong lighter in hand, I just had to chuckle. Does the Kiribi add to my smoking experience? Absolutely! Highly recommended!
Next up, I've begun carrying some new tobacco blends from Peterson, including Hyde Park, Irish Whiskey, Irish Oak, Sherlock Holmes, Luxury Blend, and Peterson's Perfecct plug! Peterson blends are top-notch, and I'm very happy to have them. In addition, I've begun carrying Escudo, which many consider the measuring stick when it comes to Virginia/Perique blends. And finally, I'm proud to announce that I'm beginning to carry Seattle Pipe Club Blends, with an initial offering of Deception Pass, Plum Pudding, and the mighty Mississippi River. Excellent blends all, but the Mississippi River is a favorite of mine--complex and flavorful, yet mild enough to be an all-day blend!
Thanks again for your interest in The Pipe Nook! Stay tuned...there are more good things on the horizon!
Keep 'em Lit,
My primary goal for The Pipe Nook is to build the website into an informative collection of my favorite pipes and tobaccos! It's a lot of fun, and by the end of 2017, I hope to have all "the usual suspects" represented from my personal regular pipe and tobacco rotation. I'm nearly there with pipes, although I'm looking to introduce a few more brands, and to beef up the lines and shapes I carry within the brands I have. I'm hoping for 6 to 9 brands of pipe tobaccos as well. With that in mind, I rolled out two of my favorite pipe tobacco brands this past week: Peterson and Mac Baren!
Peterson pipe tobaccos are among the most well-known and well-respected in the business. Made from some of the finest leaf from around the world, many a pipe-smoker has found a go-to blend in the Peterson line, myself included! I'm getting things started with two personal favorites, Irish Flake and University Flake, and a recently discovered semi-aromatic "wild card," Nutty Cut.
Mac Baren is a distinguished Danish tobacco company with a history of more than 130 years! Many of their blends have been in production and enjoyed for decades, and newer entries have become modern classics. Many of their blends are personal favorites, and I hope you'll find your own go-to blends within the Mac Baren line. I'm starting with three blends from their much-heralded HH line: Acadian Perique, Latakia Flake, and my current personal favorite tobacco, Old Dark Fired.
The Peterson and Mac Baren brands are home to some of my very favorite tobacco blends. I'm starting with these 3 blends from each, with more to come as orders roll in. And while I may never carry every single offering from every single brand, my intention is to have the kind of stock that when a newcomer asks, "what do you recommend on the site?" I can wholeheartedly say, "Everything!"
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I think I get the most excited about a new batch of Neerup pipes more than anything else that I carry here at The Pipe Nook! Part of the reason for that excitement of course is because some of my favorite pipes are Neerups, and part of it is because I'm receiving these pipes from an individual (Peder Jeppesen) who I know takes great care in making them in the Danish fashion, all unique, and just right. But another part of it is also the fact that, as good as the photos may be, a Neerup pipe always looks best in person. I made a presentation video for these pipes for my YouTube channel (The Pipe Nook), and a viewer commented, echoing my very thoughts on the matter. Being able to see these pipes in multiple angles simply beats the few pictures I can post with my small knowledge of photography. But even beyond that, being able to hold a Neerup in your hand just takes it to a whole new level! And for the prices these are offered at, you just can't beat 'em.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that, if you like the pictures of these Neerups...just wait until you get one of them delivered to your door...you'll be blown away! Believe me, I know from firsthand experience. If you watch my YouTube video, in which I share the box opening with you, you can see the gears turning with quite a few of these pipes. Not every shape calls out to every person, but when it was all said and done, there are 10 or 12 of these 20 that I would love to add to my personal collection! I can tell you that I'm definitely keeping two of them for myself, possibly more. Hmmm...for the sake of my bank account, perhaps I shouldn't carry Neerup pipes after all...
And now for a quick announcement: I'll be out of town for a few days, so any and all orders placed between now and March 22nd will ship out on March 23rd. Just a quick trip to recharge the batteries a bit, so I thank you for your patience for the brief wait time.
Keep 'em Lit,
Here at The Pipe Nook, we're just getting started on our journey of offering premium pipe tobacco blends to our customers. Just as I've done in choosing pipes to carry, I'm taking great care in choosing tobaccos that I personally feel are the best in the business when it comes to quality versus value. As such, I don't ever intend to carry brands simply as commodities. What that means is that it's never my goal to carry every brand, nor even every blend within the larger brands I may carry. Everything offered here at The Pipe Nook is a personal recommendation from me as a pipe smoker!
I kicked things off a few weeks back by offering Dunhill tobaccos. I plan to eventually have about 9 to 12 brands represented, and with that in mind, I'm pleased to introduce Savinelli as the second tobacco brand here at The Pipe Nook!
While some companies attempt to create blends for every mood and palate, winding up with dozens of blends, Savinelli has gone another direction and focused on providing just a few very high-quality blends that can be appreciated and enjoyed by many. No strong, overly-aromatic, or harsh blends here! Every one of these could be all-day smokes, and certainly could be entries into more natural-tasting blends for those who wish to move away from smoking primarily aromatics. Savinelli tobaccos are smooth, balanced and refined, just like the pipes that bear that name.
Four of these five blends are available in 100 gram tins, so let's start with the only 50 gram offering in the line, Giubileo d'Oro, which means "Golden Jubilee." This is an incredibly creamy Virginia/Latakia flake, moderate in strength, and very pleasing to even a Latakia-wary person such as myself.
The second of two blends in the line to make use of Latakia is also another very balanced blend, Essenza Cipriota, meaning "Essence of Cyprus." If the name make you think "Latakia Bomb," have no fear--this is another very well-balanced blend, presented in a ribbon cut and consisting of Virginia, Burley, Latakia, and Oriental/Macedonian.
The other flake in the lineup is Brunello Flake, a non-aromatic marriage of Virginia, Burley, and Oriental/Macedonian. It's very similar to Essenza Cipriota, but without the Latakia, and presented in flake form. This is my third favorite in the group--I told you I was wary of Latakia!
The only coin or spun-cut in the line is Doblone d'Oro, or "Gold Dubloons." This is a fantastic non-aromatic blend of Virginia, Burley, Dark Fired, and Perique. The inclusion of Dark Fired and Perique places this blend squarely in my personal wheelhouse, and I love it! Some compare this favorably with the original Three Nuns blend of old.
And last but certainly not least is my personal favorite of the bunch, Savinelli's 140th Anniversary Mixture. Each 100 gram tin of this limited run is individually numbered out of only 1400 tins made in 2016 to commemorate 140 years of Savinelli! It is very surprising to me that I like this so much, since it may be considered by some to be lightly aromatic in nature, due to the infusion of light citrus and floral notes (and to my palate, a bit of clove essence). But beyond that, this is an enticing blend of Virginia, Orientals, Dark Fired. The special florets used in this blend are a staple in Italian cigar production, and are all grown and double-fermented on a singular farm in the Tuscan Tiber Valley region of Italy— a location recognized for its history and tradition of tobacco cultivation dating back to the 17th century. This in a singular experience in pipe smoking, and I'll be happy to carry these tins until I just can't obtain them any more...although at that point, I'll be hoarding them for myself! While the other 4 blends are made by Mac Baren in Denmark, the 140th Anniversary Mixture was made by Cornell & Diehl here in the USA.
Rare indeed is the tobacco brand that has what I would call no sleepers in the stable, but Savinelli has certainly accomplished that here with their lineup. I hope you enjoy them every bit as much as I do. And stay tuned for more tobacco brands to be introduced here at The Pipe Nook in the weeks and months to come!
Keep 'em Lit,
I've yet to meet a pipe smoker who simply doesn't like Savinelli pipes. Savinelli is easily one of the most well-respected pipe makers in the world, and for good reason. They consistently create some of the most loved shapes and finishes on the market. However, I've heard many pipe smokers say things similar to, "I don't use the balsa filters, but they smoke great without them."
Although I'm personally a fan of the 6mm Balsa filter system, I can't exactly say the filters are strictly necessary. Savinelli's filter system is designed in such a way as to allow for pipe smokers to choose whether or not to use filters depending on their own preference, while still providing a great smoke either way! I personally find that the balsa filters are a fantastic feature to tame blends that are overly moist or tend to bite, but many pipe smokers prefer an unfiltered smoke, and Savinelli has answered the call. The Tre series features a more standard 3mm drilling for those who prefer not to use filters and would like to have a more standard draw.
I currently only have the Tre series available in the newly introduced 321 shape, but rest assured I'll have more in the near future. Which brings me to my next point: in addition to the Tre 321's in both smooth and rusticated finishes, I also have re-stocks of 321's in the Dolomiti and Impero lines! This has turned into quite the shape of interest for those who like the look of the 320, but would rather have a smaller bowl size and hand feel. I personally have a 321 Impero Rusticated that I'm over the moon about, but I'll also be adding a Tre 321 to my collection today!
Check out these fantastic pipes in The Pipe Nook web store, and let me know what you think of the 321 shape, and what other shapes you'd like for me to carry in the Tre line!
Keep 'em lit,
Just a quick blog today to announce the inclusion of Estate Pipes on The Pipe Nook web store! Some of you have been asking if I will branch into this facet of the pipe collecting hobby, and while I was hesitant to begin with, I've had estate pipes on the site for a week now, and they have already earned their permanent place here.
Estate pipes are a quick and inexpensive way to build your pipe collection! Pipes designated as "Estate Pipes" have been previously owned, and in many cases smoked, although some unsmoked pipes will find their way into this category from time to time and are noted as such. Our Estate Pipe offerings at The Pipe Nook are from my personal collection. Sometimes a pipe just doesn't "click" with its owner for whatever reason, and that's what these are--good pipes all, unless otherwise stated, but ones that I rarely reach for to smoke. Most of these pipes have been very lightly smoked and haven't even had time to build up a cake. They have been well cared for and not abused.
NOTE: I am not a pipe refurbishing expert. Buyers should satisfy themselves as to the cleanliness of each pipe upon arrival before smoking, but in most cases there won't be much to do. See individual pipe descriptions for details!
I started the category last weekend with about 21 pipes, and I've already sold about two-thirds of my stock! That's encouraging, so I'll be sure to add various estate pipes in the future. So check out the Estate Pipes section under the "Pipes" category, and I hope you find a deal on something of interest to add to your collection!
Keep 'em Lit,
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