I bought some of C&D's Sweet English recently. I've had a chance to sample it a couple of times and thought I'd share my impressions of the blend.
First, the online description: "For Sweet English, the folks at C&D start with a traditional American Cavendish base of Virginias, Burleys and black Cavendish, add a dash of Latakia, and finish it with a specially formulated flavor mixture of caramel and vanilla."
The bag of bulk tobacco I received is definitely Virginia-forward - lots of light ribbon cut in the mix, with splashes of brown burley and black cavendish. The latakia is present but plays a supporting role. Tin note is caramel over wood smoke and hay, very pleasant, though I worried initially that the toppings, very present in the tin note, would be overly heavy in the taste.
My order arrived pretty much at the perfect moisture level, so I didn;t give it any extra dry time. I sampled this blend in two pipes - a Brigham Pear and a Stanwell freehand - and in both it packed, lit and burned beautifully. I thought it burned a bit faster than other blends I've had recently (perhaps a result of being Virginia forward?), but at no time did it bite. With a minimum of fuss and a light tamp her and there, each bowl burned nicely to the bottom, with mostly white ash and a bit of dottle left over. Little to no moisture, definitely no goop.
Now the important stuff - the taste! My early concerns about too much candy flavour were dispelled as soon as I lit up. The caramel/vanilla note is just barely there in the flavour/room note, just enough to sweeten things a bit and keep my company sniffing the air. As you might expect from the description above, the main flavours are hay-like VAs rounded out with mild Burleys. The Cavendish adds a touch of sweetness while the Latakia brings in some lovely smokiness.
Sweet English is what I'd label as a mild to medium American English blend. Think Squadron Leader with a touch of sweetness. It would be a great entry into English/Lat blends for the Aro smoker and a nice change of pace for the English fans. Easily could be an all-day smoke, though I suspect it lacks the punch to stand up to outdoor smoking when the winter chill sets in. An extra pinch of Latakia or Dark Fired might give it the extra stoutness required in colder weather.
I'll enjoy this blend while I have it and likely order some more to cellar over the winter. At the recent sale price, I should have ordered more to begin with!