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Esoterica replacements


Russian spambot
I prefer Old Ironsides to Penzance.

I prefer Golden Extra to Stonehaven, which probably sends me to pipesmoker hell, but whatever.

Unfortunately I don't prefer anything to King Charles Mixture, which is also Germain's, and no one else gets close.
Ok what? Golden extra you say?

I don’t recall who makes it but I’ve probably looked at the name and thought it was a light haylike VA


Russian spambot
Golden Extra is a chocolatey burley with what comes across to me as a white wine sort of nose in the tin. Tastes exactly like burning cardboard, which is also exactly what Stonehaven tastes like. Ergo, they are the same.
OK now I know which circle you're in.

I guess I smoke RDF and not Stonehaven but people think they're cousins and sir I will challenge you to a duel if you call RDF's purity into question.


Staff member
I'm not calling anybody's purity into question. I think burley tastes like cardboard. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

Never had RDF. I find the Germain's virginias to run the gamut from "is this a cigar" to "is this even tobacco"? The special brown is pretty tasty. But if RDF is a lot like Stonehaven, I won't seek it out. I've had stonehaven a few times, different samples, different ages, and I just don't like it.


Well-known member
To me the Esoterica stars are; Tilbury & Dunbar, I’ve never had anything that came close to those two. I enjoy Stonehaven & Penzance but I don’t go seeking them out, if they fall in my lap, than I’ll definitely take em.

It’s funny @Sasquatch mentioned Golden Extra, I threw a tin in with my order I placed on Monday, they were having a %15 off Mac B sale and I’ve been toying with the idea of trying this one for a long time, if I knew it was gonna taste like burning cardboard I would have bought some ages ago! I’ve recently been BIG on MB. I’ve been exploring some of their more traditional blends outside of the HH line ever since I was “wowed” by Mixture Scottish Blend. There is a slight learning curve to get the most out of their blends but I think it’s worth the effort.


Well-known member
Excellent approach.

Esoterica "matches" may not really be possible.
But replacements could be.

List what you like about the Esoterica blends @Sly2517.
Then rather than a "match" you can possibly get suggestions for a replacement.
Apparently I am asking because people suggested some and they are unattainable. Any tobacco can be matched or substituted. Was just asking. If you don't know then that is ok.

Robert Hardy

Well-known member
Let's be clear here, this blend is still in production and available. Let's not mourn their demise just yet. Ten years ago this brand was readily available and attained legendary status due to its high quality and hoarding. Enter the Arango Cigar Co. and the game changed. He who has the coin gets the good tobacco and the distribution channels changed. Also I suspect that one or 4 etailers are selling via their "consignment tins" section. Why sell for $36.95 when you can sell for $160. Just say'n.


Well-known member
Hmmm, I sure as heck don't have any kind of palate other than "DANG! this is REALLY good", which Penzance did to me. And, "hey, I really really like this", which is what Stonehaven (with some age/crystals on it, and dried to a crisp) and Margate did to me. KCSM struck me as a tobacco blend that has really really good quality tobacco in it... didn't floor me, but I'd buy it again. Didn't care too much for the shag cut, but the overall experience was positive.

Not too much has wowed me, but I do really like SPC Plum Pudding... that was nearly a "Dang" for me. I'd really like to try the special reserve of that some day. Samovar is also quite nearly a "Dang" for me. Won't ever see that again. Looking forward to trying the couple of tins of 3 Oaks Syrian I have squirreled away. Ashton's artisan blend was pretty good. MacB's HH Vintage Syrian is pretty good too. I really enjoyed Krumble Kake, but had to hump @Tallpuffoburley 's leg for a bowl of that. I think he enjoyed that... I guess that bowl was worth it. Yeah.... I seem to really like blends that are either gone, or pretty much unobtanium.

My search for "DANG, this is REALLY good!" will eternally continue.


Well-known member
Some sorta kinda approximates that I've observed:

C&D Quiet Nights sorta matches Penzance, certainly in appearance and cut, likely in tobacco variants used, maybe not entirely in proportions. What it did lack was the musty feeling of oldness of Penzance, and its more melded, more homogenous flavor profile.

I thought Samuel Gawith Golden Glow matched up almost dead on with Esoterica Scarborough in nearly every quantifiable way, even the tin note..a slight hint of tomato for both. Granted, the tin of Golden Glow that I had was almost 6 years old, so maybe that was a contributing factor and I wouldn't be writing this had the Golden Glow been younger.