Review by kyrob
Syrian Super Balkan
I happened across this six year old tin at a local B&M a few weeks ago and thought I would give it a try. The tin contained loose ribbons in various shades of chocolate brown with a little black mixed in. The tin aroma was one of the often mentioned McClelland ketchup, but the few times I have experienced this smell personally have never bothered me. This tobacco was a little on the dry side, which suited me fine. An unlit sip tasted of the sweet Virginias in the blend.
On the charring light and the first few draws I mostly tasted the sweetness, and it remained dominate throughout the bowl. As the bowl progressed I also detected both fruity and peppery tones, and every so often a hint of chocolate. After smoking a few bowls of this in a row I could really feel the Perique at the back of my throat, and other than that this blend was very mild. It was not bad in briars and meers, but I preferred it best in a cob where the flavors just seemed bolder. The room note was tolerable; it reminded me of saddle leather that had just come off of a horse's back, that pungent animal sweat and leather smell.
Overall I really liked Syrian Super Balkan. I liked how every puff seemed to contain a little surprise, and how subtle the blend was. I like more aggressive blends typically, but this is a good change in the rotation in the form of a mild English and I will definitely be buying more. I would recommend this blend to anyone looking for a mild or first time English smoke.