Dunhill Standard Mixture is a medium ribbon-cut "English" mixture predominated by Viginia and Turkish tobacco with (I feel) just a hint of Latakia. Latakia isn't mentioned in the tin notes and I may be misinterpreting the blend. Latakia certainly isn't the driving force behind it. The aroma from the tin is of mellow (but not sweet) Virginia and very slightly sour Turkish. Slight smokiness, but again, not overwhelming. Balance is the watch-word. The ribbon is of medium width and length, about 50% medium brown in colour with the remainder balanced between light and dark. There is a scattering of fully black tobacco and a similar quantity of greenish leaf. The colours match my take on the constituents; Virginias and Orientals/Turkish with a hint (only perhaps) of Latakia.

The tobacco as packed is of ideal humidity to smoke immediately (I don't dry tobacco in any case). Packed well; relatively loosely in the wide, shallow (and deceptively capacious) bowl of the Old Mokum ceramic pipe. Lights easily and kept burning to dottle without trouble. Initially the taste is rather bland, with slight sourness from the Turkish leaf. This fills out rapidly to a rich, easy, "Standard" smoke. Nutty notes start to emerge as the smoke progress as does a slight bitterness. A slight cigarette-like note came through on occasion. Turkish cigarettes, obviously. Some smokiness, but this isn't a major feature; it's much more about the balance between the Virginia mellowness and the Turkish spice and sourness with the nuttiness riding over the whole - from some casing/topping perhaps.

Tongue bite wasn't an issue and neither was the tongue-coating nature of some Latakias heavy blends. As before, I'm not convinced of the role that Latakia plays, if any. Nicotine level is low to medium. It wouldn't limit this from being an all-day blend, but perhaps the Orientals would prove tiring. The flavours linger in the mouth for a good long while. These are again dominated by the Oriental/Turkish and not by any Latakia that might be in the blend.

A good "Standard" English mixture as the name implies. Personally, I'll mainly stick to Robert Lewis Tree Mixture when I require Limeying up, but I can see no real fault with this blend.

Over to the pipe...

Old Mokum is one of the Zenith brands of clay (I'd say ceramic) pipes made in the Netherlands. I have a feeling that they are still made today. They are of hard, white clay material, double-skinned, glazed on the outer surface only. The bit is Peterson P-Lip-esque in shape and has a sort of military mount. Tapered end plugging into a cork seal in the "shank". The bowl is relatively shallow and wide - fits 3/4 of the tip of my thumb - and unglazed inside. It takes a surprisingly large amount of tobacco. I've found that it works best when packed quite loosely, at least when used with ribbon-cut tobacco. I have used it with fully rubbed out flake before, but haven't been particularly impressed by the result. The example I have is 3/4 bent and of a typical (I understand) "Dutch" shape. It's of light mocha colour which I believe comes to the pure white clay through use. A few darker areas and spots. I'm sure it will become quite dark in time. "Old Mokum" logo is in pale blue under-glaze script lettering on the shank.

The construction makes these a "System" pipe. The bowl has a single, central, vertical hole into the chamber formed by the double skin. This forms a perfect condensing and cooling chamber. The pipe does get quite hot but the smoke remains cool and dry. Liquid accumulates and causes some gurgling (the cork hole is a bit worn and the stem sits lower on its taper than I'd like in order to form a good seal - needs to be replaced which will be no problem) but this doesn't compromise the smoke. I occasionally remove the stem and simply pour out the liquid.

The pipe takes a bit of effort to light but then smokes on without issue to dottle. It's a feature of the wide bowl, I think. As this is a ceramic pipe it is easy to clean and adds no flavour that I can detect to the tobacco.

Overall, a good, practical pipe, particularly if you want to keep the number in a rotation down (no resting, easy to clean). The wide bowl and problems that I have had with flakes may limit its use. Unusual and will last forever (just don't drop it).

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