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Review: De Kralingse Hermbstedt's Brasil with Kashubian Sauce

Today I want to take a closer look at this snuff. A fine summary of the history can be found on this forum in this thread: https://snuffhouse.vanillaforums.com/discussion/8240/hermbstedt-s-brasil-and-more but let me put it together.

A little reading and Google search tells me that this snuff is not a true Brasil because it does not contain actual Brasil tobacco such as can be found in schmalzlers. Apparently during the Napoleonan wars Europe experienced a shortage of goods from overseas and the colonies, for example coffee and Brasil. So while certain goods were still in demand, necessity was the mother of invention. People missed their Brasil and this snuff was created, using Virginia tobacco with cinnamon water and potash.

From what I can gather, this snuff has been produced to taste just like Brasil and the Kashubian sauce is flavoured with mocca and something called Peruvian balsam. So is it any good?
The snuff is medium dark to light brown and quite dry and coarse. From experience that is pretty much how it's supposed to be and it looks just like other old style snuffs like Bernard's Kownoer. From the box I can smell a little cinnamon and some mocca but to my surprise my nose is also fooled into believing that I smell Brasil. Very good. In my nose this surprise is even stronger. In a blind test I would definitely say Brasil, even schmalzler and I like that. The other flavours are quite subtle, which is normal and most flavoured snuffs smell stronger out of the box than in the nose. The burn is very mild and the snuff develops a sweetness that can compete with every good schmalzler out there. I put that down to the mocca part in the sauce. A few minutes after the first pinch I feel like adding a little more and I can. This snuff is very forgiving and I don't need a handkerchief right away. That isn't a given because the snuff is on the dry side and going back to the Kownoer, it can burn more than I like. I am missing the earthy, dark notes that true Brasil carries but that is fine with me. The gentle coffee/mocca scent makes more than up for it.

Would I buy it again? Definitely. This is snuff with a history and the craftsmanship shows. It is hard to find any fault with it except perhaps the absence of some scents and nuances that we can only get from a true Brasil, but this is as close as it gets to the real deal. Very close.

Comments

  • yes, I too have this snuff on stock in my freezer. Very good and you can indeed see the craftmanship. The cinnamon scent is far away the mocca rules.

    Peruvian balsam is also an historic thing used much against colds and such.
  • volungevolunge Member
    edited March 2 PM
    This was one of the most pleasantly scented snuffs I ever encountered. I was lucky to get it fresh in the brown snuffbox, it was moist (Bolongaro-like) and very fragrant. It didn't remind me schmalzler. Nor did I expect it to be alike. Peruvian balsam was dominant there, really unique scent, sweet and toning, lingering for a good while. I didn't get cinamon and mocca at all.

    Usually I do not advocate snuff rehydration, but HBKS is one of the rare exceptions. If you are still hoarding small amounts of this treasure, most probably it is bone-dry (as mine last gram is) and almost scentless now. Please use any rehydration method of your choice and try to revive the scent, especially if you are unfamiliar with fresh HBKS. Definitely worth making every effort.

  • FilekFilek Member
    edited March 2 PM
    Maybe it wasn't a schmalzler, but it was pretty close to be named as one:

  • @volunge: Nice to hear such positive remarks after so long a time. Thank you!

    @Filek: You know it because you stood at the cradle of this snuf!!

    Jaap Bes.
  • I need to try that, as mine is bone dry.
  • @Epitango:good luck!

    Jaap Bes.
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