Ooooh I do love it when we get new stuff in for me to test! It’s a tough old job, but someone has to do it! This week I’m testing the new additions to the range of tobacco flavour sprays that were released to replace flavoured hand rolling tobacco, after it was banned in May of this year. The first six flavours were available in time for the ban and naturally, this range focused on the tried and tested flavours (Cherry, vanilla, etc.). So, it makes sense that this time they’d focus more on some of the more obscure flavours… and you know how much I love weird and obscure flavours, so I was definitely looking forward to this taste test!
Yaaassss! I was so gutted when I saw this hadn’t been included in the original line up of sprays as it was always one of my favourite Auld Kendal flavours, so I was seriously happy when I saw it was finally coming out. To me, it seems slightly different to how I remember, but I get the feeling that’s more down to ratio than the actual taste of the spray. But more importantly, this smells AMAZING! Seriously, if you get some of this, take the lid off the spray and have a whiff… remember those jelly strawberries you used to get from the ice cream van? Yeah, it smells exactly like them! The taste is pretty consistent with the smell, and a high concentration of spray gives a genuinely “juicy” strawberry taste, with a subtle undertone of childhood memories 😉. I know it’s the first one I tested, but I’m already in love with this one and I’m really not sure if the others will be able to top it!
The Auld Kendal Blackcurrant never quite received the love that Exzellent Spicy Blackcurrant did, but those were some mighty big shoes to fill! It was always an enjoyably flavoured tobacco, but the flavour was often that little bit too light in comparison for our customers (and me) to choose it over Exzellent’s intensely flavoured offering. However, now we have control over how much flavour goes on, it’s a real gamechanger! The smell/taste of this is very distinctive; it’s almost exactly like a blackcurrant cough sweet, to the extent where I can’t tell if there’s a slight hint of menthol or if it’s just my brain playing tricks on me! Either way, if you liked either of the blackcurrant flavours we had before, you should really enjoy this one!
Speaking of vaguely menthol things! In its original form, this was always something of a marmite tobacco. Some people really went for the unusual, cough candy-esque taste, whereas others couldn’t quite get down with the concept of a fruit and menthol flavour combination. So, whether you’ll like this one or not will very much be down to your own personal tastes, but I can tell you this much: It’s seriously potent. I’m wondering if my ratio was a little off, or maybe it’s just because it’s the first menthol I’ve had in spray form, but holy hell, my first puff of this literally took my breath away and it genuinely made me go “Woah!” Weirdly (considering the menthol is only half the story here, flavour-wise) this has to be the most pronounced menthol taste I’ve found in a tobacco, leaving your throat incredibly cool and a little bit tingly, with a subtle cherry sweetness on your tongue. It might not be for everyone, but those who liked the original cherry menthol, should enjoy how intense this spray can get!
Another menthol-ish spray and another smell reminiscent of childhood sweets. The aroma is almost exactly the same as the Spearmint Chews I remember selling when we had a sweet shop in Liverpool. After nearly blowing my brains out with the Cherry Menthol, I was a little wary of another minty spray, but this is way more approachable. Interestingly, it gives a distinctly minty taste, but doesn’t catch the back of your throat in the way regular menthol does. It’s also a great option for a “Similar but different” tobacco for people who usually smoke regular menthol, but fancy a bit of variety.
I’m really not sure about this one. It’s definitely enjoyable, but I can’t quite put my finger on the taste. There’s certainly a hint of dark rum to it, but I think at other times the flavour becomes a little more like chocolate or caramel. This is most likely due to the natural sugary sweetness of dark rum. There are also occasional spicy hints, so if you’re a fan of stuff like Dark Matter or Sailor Jerry, you should like this! From what I’ve picked up from customers here, I think people expect this to be quite strong, as it’s spirit-based, but I think it’s actually pretty mellow and approachable, so don’t let that put you off if you’re curious!
So those are the five new sprays we have. Personally, I think they’re generally better than the first batch as far as flavour and aroma quality goes, even if the flavours are a little more unusual. So, if you tried any of the first batch and didn’t quite like them: Don’t write them off completely. It feels like they have the formula down a little better for this new batch.
Until next time: Put that in your pipe and smoke it!