Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake

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Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake

Post by Del » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:55 am

I've avoided this one. I had an unpleasant experience with Mac Baren Honey & Chocolate, which tasted exactly like an ice cream sundae with hot fudge and tobacco on top.

The Brits do it right. The cocoa is very subtle... the smoke tastes like a dark virginia tobacco should. The chocolate appears in the aftertaste.... a few minutes after putting the bowl down, I enjoy the experience of having just finished a piece of semi-sweet Dove chocolate.

The flake is thick and sturdy. One is well-rewarded for the effort of carefully rubbing this one out, if smoking indoors. A fold-and-stuff smoker needs a good stiff breeze to keep it lit. In any case, keep your lighter handy.

In any case, it is a slow and long smoker. Half-a-flake fills a bowl for an hour or more. There's no threat of bite, either. I do get a bit of bitterness in the back of the throat if I try to smoke it hot. I rather suspect that this is from the cocoa more than the tobacco.

Rusty warns that this one does not cellar well. Very well then -- every time I buy some tobacco to cellar, I'll pick up a few ounces of SG Chocolate Flake to smoke while I wait!
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Post by Thoth » Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:40 am

Its hard for me think of this flake with out comparing it to its cousin of Bob's Chocolate Flake. If you have tried both you'll know what I mean when I say SG's Chocolate flake tastes like Bob's Chocolate flake smells. Also despite in the tin aroma, the latakia being more pronounced it seems to me the sweeter smoke and it does not have those floral notes found in Bob's
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Post by DepartedLight » Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:52 am

Nice write up, Del.

I got a taste of this and liked it too. I just got a tin of it delivered yesterday. As soon as I am done with the Bob's Choco-Flake I have opened and jarred I'm putting this one in that jar. Between the two I like SG's a little better. Great summer evening smoke and red wine as well as IPA or Stout complements well.
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Post by Del » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:06 am

DepartedLight wrote:Great summer evening smoke and red wine as well as IPA or Stout complements well.
'Tain't too bad as a morning smoke with coffee, neither!
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Post by DepartedLight » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:11 am

Del wrote:
DepartedLight wrote:Great summer evening smoke and red wine as well as IPA or Stout complements well.
'Tain't too bad as a morning smoke with coffee, neither!
wha'? You gots sumtin agian' IPA in da mornin'?
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Post by CharisPiper » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:16 am

I've been smoking this one of late too--still enjoying my tin. I will join in singing it's praises. Del, I have to agree with you about the British and the fact that they do their toppings right! I can also see how it compliments morning coffee and an evening glass of red wine (perhaps a nice Cabernet Sauvingnon) equally well. Thanks for the write up!

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Post by Del » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:41 am

CharisPiper wrote:I've been smoking this one of late too--still enjoying my tin. I will join in singing it's praises. Del, I have to agree with you about the British and the fact that they do their toppings right! I can also see how it compliments morning coffee and an evening glass of red wine (perhaps a nice Cabernet Sauvingnon) equally well. Thanks for the write up!
There is a flavor characteristic called "astringency." People who enjoy this flavor show certain predictable preferences:

- Black coffee over cream-and-sugar
- Dark chocolate over milk chocolate
- Red wine over white wine
- Dark beers over light beers
- Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake tobacco whenever they can get it.
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Post by CharisPiper » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:47 am

Del wrote:
CharisPiper wrote:I've been smoking this one of late too--still enjoying my tin. I will join in singing it's praises. Del, I have to agree with you about the British and the fact that they do their toppings right! I can also see how it compliments morning coffee and an evening glass of red wine (perhaps a nice Cabernet Sauvingnon) equally well. Thanks for the write up!
There is a flavor characteristic called "astringency." People who enjoy this flavor show certain predictable preferences:

- Black coffee over cream-and-sugar
- Dark chocolate over milk chocolate
- Red wine over white wine
- Dark beers over light beers
- Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake tobacco whenever they can get it.
No wonder I like SG Chocolate Flake!

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Post by 7formy1911 » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:53 am

CharisPiper wrote:
Del wrote:
CharisPiper wrote:I've been smoking this one of late too--still enjoying my tin. I will join in singing it's praises. Del, I have to agree with you about the British and the fact that they do their toppings right! I can also see how it compliments morning coffee and an evening glass of red wine (perhaps a nice Cabernet Sauvingnon) equally well. Thanks for the write up!
There is a flavor characteristic called "astringency." People who enjoy this flavor show certain predictable preferences:

- Black coffee over cream-and-sugar
- Dark chocolate over milk chocolate
- Red wine over white wine
- Dark beers over light beers
- Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake tobacco whenever they can get it.
No wonder I like SG Chocolate Flake!
Very interesting I certainly fall into that group.
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Post by Rusty » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:18 am

An interesting thread! ... especially on the flavour aspects.

It's curious to me that "astringency" is being talked about because I don't get that at all from this blend. For me it's more of a dark chocolate than milk so I certainly see that part. But the astringency or slight bitterness of dark chocolate is completely missing in this blend, again for me. I don't want to dispute the flavours others are tasting.

It's very very smooth and somewhat dense in flavour without a lot of complexity. All this associates with something closer to richness and almost a creaminess to me. It's a heavy flavour without being as strong (nic) as the flavour suggests and completely lacking in anything like astringency.

There are other Lake District blends that do feature astringency or more properly a bit of bitterness in the sense that we have bitterness in many Ales. Bosun Cut Plug, for example, has an astringency. probably due to the combo of clove flavour plus darker Burley's in the blend. It's not sweet though it goes very well with some dark beers.
Del wrote:Rusty warns that this one does not cellar well.
I was originally a little reluctant to say anything about cellaring this one and I debated saying anything precisely because of this kind of comment. It's not so much that it's wrong. But it fails to capture the issue. The issue is: the tobacco is prone to grow mold.
SG's tobaccos are very natural without a lot of preservatives. Some of them will grow mold very easily and I think it probably depends upon the toppings plus the moist tobacco 'growth media'. Choc flake is more prone to mold than some of the other blends (FVF & SL are quite resistant for example). So I really don't know how it cellars because I've had to dry it out so much (to prevent mold) that it probably doesn't age at all. I can't think of any reason why tins would markedly different in this respect either.

This is not an objection to Del's comment so much as a clarification. I'd rather that you remembered that they're natural and therefore might grow mold.
Last edited by Rusty on Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by DepartedLight » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:25 am

mmmmmmmmm moldy chocolate

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Post by madmarv » Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:18 pm

DepartedLight wrote:mmmmmmmmm moldy chocolate

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:lol: :lol: :lol:

After Rusty's previous comments and now Del's review I have to try this one. I'm out of the GH version now, anyway-
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Post by USA_traveller » Fri Apr 23, 2010 6:03 pm

Rusty wrote:
Del wrote:Rusty warns that this one does not cellar well.
I was originally a little reluctant to say anything about cellaring this one and I debated saying anything precisely because of this kind of comment. It's not so much that it's wrong. But it fails to capture the issue. The issue is: the tobacco is prone to grow mold.
SG's tobaccos are very natural without a lot of preservatives. Some of them will grow mold very easily and I think it probably depends upon the toppings plus the moist tobacco 'growth media'. Choc flake is more prone to mold than some of the other blends (FVF & SL are quite resistant for example). So I really don't know how it cellars because I've had to dry it out so much (to prevent mold) that it probably doesn't age at all. I can't think of any reason why tins would markedly different in this respect either.

This is not an objection to Del's comment so much as a clarification. I'd rather that you remembered that they're natural and therefore might grow mold.
I agree with Rusty about the moisture level in this blend, though I have had good success cellaring some for over a year. I can't see any mold or suspicious little white patches, so I think it is OK. Maybe I'm just lucky. Or ignorant.
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Re: Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake

Post by JudgeRusty » Sun Jan 21, 2018 3:32 pm

I received a ten year old tin in my Secret Santa package from ID. The flakes were stuck together, a bit crumbly and had some crystals on them.
The smoke was really good. I am about half finished with this tin.

I did no research on the components prior to smoking. I tasted the dark cocoa flavor, but it was very subtle. I tasted no latakia. I wonder if the flavors mentioned in the other reviews faded with aging.

Some of you that are smoking non-aged tins, please chime in with your reviews. I liked this enough to purchase some more, but I wonder if the un-aged tins would produce a taste similar to what I am smoking.

There is also a review thread on this tobacco in the Tobacco Hut; it even mentions a Lakeland flavoring.
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Re: Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake

Post by hugodrax » Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:18 pm

I buy it in bulk from my local shop. Delightful stuff. Just a fine Brown Virginia with a noticeable but light topping of dark cocoa. Latakia is not noticeable to me, but latakia and cocoa would probably meld into a complimentary flavor. Pm me and I'll send you a flake or two of fresh. Only caveat is to review them side by side for us.
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Re: Sam Gawith Chocolate Flake

Post by DepartedLight » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:06 pm

Bob’s chocolate flake is better. I’ve done the reasearch, it’s just better,
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