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Pipe Tobacco
Tobaccos for smoking in pipes are often carefully treated and blended to achieve flavor nuances not available in other tobacco products.[citation needed] Many of these are blends using staple ingredients of variously cured Burley and Virginia tobaccos which are enhanced by spice tobaccos, among them many Oriental or Balkan varietals, Latakia (a fire-cured spice tobacco of Syrian origin, but now made in other regions, such as, Cyprus and Lebanon ), Perique (uniquely grown in St. James Parish, Louisiana) which is also an old method of fermentation, or blends of Virginia and Burley tobaccos of African, Indian, or South American origins. Traditionally, many U.S. blends are made of American Burley with sweeteners and flavorings added to create an "aromatic" flavor, whereas "English" blends are based on natural Virginia tobaccos enhanced with Oriental and other natural tobaccos. There is a growing tendency towards "natural" tobaccos which derive their aromas from artful blending with selected spice tobaccos only and careful, often historically-based, curing processes. Pipe tobacco can be purchased in several forms, which vary both in flavor (leading to many blends and opportunities for smokers to blend their own tobaccos) and in the physical shape and size to which the tobacco has been reduced. Most pipe tobaccos are less mild than cigarette tobacco, substantially more moist and cut much more coarsely. Too finely cut tobacco does not allow enough air to flow through the pipe, and overly dry tobacco burns too quickly with little flavor. Pipe tobacco must be kept in an airtight container, such as a canning jar or sealed tin, to keep from drying out. Some pipe tobaccos are cut into long narrow ribbons. Some are pressed into flat plugs which are sliced into flakes. Others are tightly wound into long ropes, then sliced into discs. Plug tobacco is maintained in its pressed block form and sold in small blocks. The plug will be sliced into thin flakes by the smoker and then prepared in a similar fashion to flake tobacco. It is considered that plug tobacco holds its flavor better than rubbed or flake tobacco. Flake tobacco (sliced cakes or ropes) may be prepared in several ways. Generally it is rubbed out with the fingers and palms until it is loose enough to pack. It can also be crumbled or simply folded and stuffed into a pipe. Some people also prefer to dice up very coarse tobaccos before using them, making them easier to pack.
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