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Meerschaum vs Briar

Help Support Brothers of Briar:

GregE

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I took your guys advice and bought a meerschaum pipe back during the middle of the summer, I thought it was just that I didn't have it broken in right, but I have to say- after having smoked it enough to get it broken in good, that I still prefer my briar pipes ...the tobacco just seems to taste better....I probably will still buy one of those fancy carved meerschaum pipes..just to show off to my 4 brother in laws when they come down from Seattle to visit.... but I know which one I prefer....I also have the same feelings toward my Calabash pipe....other than "looking really cool" when I smoke it....I still prefer my briar pipes......though I sometimes get a really bad itch to just sit down with one of my corn cobs from missouri meerschaum...
I think the Peterson pipes with the sump and upper draw hole are my favorites....Even though I have more expensive pipes now.
And I still owe a big thank you to the Duke for introducing me to Walnut...I never tire of that stuff....
 

Buddy Springman

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There are reasons why briar is number one. 'course plenty of meer and 'bash lovers may credit briar's reign to durability or cost relative to the others. Just smoke what you enjoy.

Buddy
 

GregE

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Thanks Buddy...I have an expensive Meerschaum and an equally expensive Calabash....so I can pick and choose...I just choose briar....I get a big kick out of the guys who spend hundreds of dollars on a pipe cause of the brand or the carvings...but regardless of the red faced emotion and berating breathless logic....a pipe is just a carved out bowl with a straw stuck in it. I love my pipes and my expensive briars...but I have just as much fun with my big corn cob pipes....sorry if I am not politically correct...but I guess that is why this is such a great hobby...you can spend as much or as little as you want...and still enjoy the moment as much as the other fellow who spent hundreds of dollars more on his pipe. I love this forum and am proud to be a part of it...
Greg
 

Justpipes

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It's all in the Walnut! :D One of these days a lot of these fellows will see the light! :D :lol:
 

GregE

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Amen brother! Walnut is a very classy everyday smoke the I never tire of, thanks for introducing me to it...... :lol:
 

ftrplt

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:twisted: Oh no...Another convert to the "dark, er, walnut side" of the force!! :D That said, I do have a few pipe-smoking buds who do not care for meers, clays, etc. While I certainly smoke my briars more than my meers; I do enjoy a good bowl of Balkan or Oriental in a meer. The two just seem made for each other!! :pipe: FTRPLT
 

lapress33

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It's been my experiance that Meer has the most neutral effect on the tobacco smoked you, difinitely taste all the characteristics of what ever is in the bowl...that being said its like do you enjoy artisan sushi or do you enjoy dry aged angus beef accompnied with a vintage burgundy, briar adds to the flavors, yes it changes what the blender blended but in most cases thats not a bad thing. Bottom line sometimes I feel like Peter Lugers and sometimes its Nobu
 

Winslow

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I have about 20 meers from the top carvers....and about 30 briars,mostly mid-grades
..Ardor,Radice,Peterson.I smoke them all in my haphazard rotation.There is a subtle
difference in taste with some of the standard high grade tobaccos between briar and
meer with briar giving me a sweeter taste to my beloved Virginias.In a blind taste test
I don't know if I could tell the difference.Reminds me of the old commercials of Coca-cola
vs. Pepsi.
I do believe it's all in the juice you taste from the smoke stream and that's why a pipe
with a straight airway from bowl to mouth does the best.The gourd and wooden calabashes
don't deliver taste wise against a straight billiard.
I do not smoke Walnut because I only have a limited time on this Earth and prefer to
smoke 1st class tobacco in my declining years. :lol:

Winslow :sunny:
 

Centurian 803

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GregE":mzhp4vdj said:
Thanks Buddy...I have an expensive Meerschaum and an equally expensive Calabash....so I can pick and choose...I just choose briar....I get a big kick out of the guys who spend hundreds of dollars on a pipe cause of the brand or the carvings...but regardless of the red faced emotion and berating breathless logic....a pipe is just a carved out bowl with a straw stuck in it. I love my pipes and my expensive briars...but I have just as much fun with my big corn cob pipes....sorry if I am not politically correct...but I guess that is why this is such a great hobby...you can spend as much or as little as you want...and still enjoy the moment as much as the other fellow who spent hundreds of dollars more on his pipe. I love this forum and am proud to be a part of it...
Greg
I have a couple of what I consider high end pipes and a bunch of mid-grades. My best smoker? A no name I picked up for six bucks in an antique store. Go figger.
 

gandalfpc

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I have a range of types, gourd calabash, meers, churchwarden, briars with extra deep bowls, I could go on - each type offers a very different experience and serves a purpose

a briar with a thinner draw for Virginias, the calabash to tame any blend or watch an old movie, churchwarden good for a drive, giant egg for a morning English

Each tobacco and situation might benefit from the proper pipe

nothing wrong with just a few pipes, but my experience has proven that it will be a long time before I have too many :)
 

Richard Burley

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Meerschaum pipes are a pain in the butt. You have to handle them carefully just to keep them from breaking, to say nothing of "coloring" them properly. I'm smoking a rather large SMS bent right now. The really good thing about them is that they come closest to making the tobacco taste the way it smells in the can, bag, or whatever--kind of a "fresh" flavor very slightly tinged with the scent of warm beeswax. I like that once in awhile. But on the other hand, when I again take up a good briar, I am impressed with how much the well-seasoned wood adds to the flavor, a certain earthiness lacking in the meerschaum. "Ghosting," smoking different blends and flavors in the same briar doesn't bother me a whit, since the only tobacco I really detest is that Black Cherry (Paladin?) stuff that's still floating around for some reason. But each to his own tastes. Watching the meerschaum color, in my estimation, has limited appeal. .
 

NeroWolfe

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Briars versus Meerschaums is no different than Blondes versus Brunettes: different but both perfectly fine !!!
 

howellhandmade

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You owe it to yourself to try a meerschaum carved by Fikri Baki. The pipes I have from him are quite a bit superior to those I've had from other makers.

I find it takes a longer time for a meer to season and lose its waxy taste, which I don't enjoy at all, than a briar pipe takes to break in. But once done, it can be a very good pipe.

 

gandalfpc

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howellhandmade":v45b736k said:
You owe it to yourself to try a meerschaum carved by Fikri Baki. The pipes I have from him are quite a bit superior to those I've had from other makers.

Truer words were never said.
 

tallan

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howellhandmade":v7jbhvhe said:
You owe it to yourself to try a meerschaum carved by Fikri Baki. The pipes I have from him are quite a bit superior to those I've had from other makers.

I find it takes a longer time for a meer to season and lose its waxy taste, which I don't enjoy at all, than a briar pipe takes to break in. But once done, it can be a very good pipe.
I just got my first Fikri Baki today, a large elephants foot that was sold as an unsmoked estate, and from first puff it's been fabulous, no beeswax taste I could discern, just completely neutral and very cool smoking. I'm hooked!
 

PipeDreams

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I like both, but they each have their merits. No burnout with meer, but you can't touch the bowls. I love holding onto the bowls on my briars.
 

tallan

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PipeDreams":s03vsr1a said:
I like both, but they each have their merits. No burnout with meer, but you can't touch the bowls. I love holding onto the bowls on my briars.
I hold my meer bowls, too, to no ill effect I can see. I wipe them down while still slightly warm with Briar Pipe Wipe which is essentially beeswax and emulsifier, before putting them away.

Don't get me wrong, I have probably 10 briars to every meer, so I'm not dissing the briar in any way. There's definitely a place for both.
 

PipeDreams

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I guess I'm just fanatical about keeping the original wax coating on my beautiful meers as pristine as possible. They are truly works of art! I may have to look into the pipe wipe though!
 
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