22 July 2017

Snus Con 2018 - Date/City Announcement! 22 July 2017.

It's official - Snus Con 2018 is taking place in Chicago, Illinois on June 9th and 10th, 2018! We are very excited to take Snus Con to the Windy City - one of my favorite places in the United States!  As of right now we don't have a venue picked out, but we will be making more announcements as we get closer to the event about where it's taking place and speakers we have lined up!  To stay up to date on all things Snus Con make sure and follow us on social media.  We post updates to our Facebook Page, Twitter Account (@SnusCon) and our Instagram Page (@Snus_Con). We couldn't be more excited to begin planning this event and we look forward to seeing you in Chicago next summer for Snus Con 2018!

17 July 2017

Skruf Slim Fresh (Stark White) - Review. 17 July 2017.

It was rather surprising when I heard that the regular strength Skruf Slim Fresh White had been discontinued. That snus appeared to be very popular in Norway. However, people in Norway do like their snus strong, so I guess it makes sense that this product is launched. Skruf Slim Fresh Xtra Stark White is also still for sale. The product description for this one says, "Skruf Slim Fresh White Strong portion snus has a fresh peppermint flavor slightly sweeter than other Skruf mint offerings. This is a high or strong strength nicotine snus." This product comes in a 16.8 gram can with 24 portions for 0.7 gram portions. The nicotine content is listed as “strong”. Skruf doesn’t reveal their nicotine strengths, but going off the way it feels I’d say it’s probably between 12mg/g to 14mg/g. But that’s just my guess.

When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a mildly sweet smell of peppermint with a light hint of menthol in the background. The portions are slim and comfortable in the lip and come with a nice cooling sensation! The taste seems to be a mild mix of peppermint with a gentle hint of menthol in the background.  The flavor is mild in taste and not too sweet, which I dig about this one.  The product has a decent nicotine kick; it feels to be stronger than a regular strength, but not as strong as an extra strong. The flavor is also quite long lasting; I’ve been able to enjoy this snus for up to an hour, sometimes more!  If you're a mint lover and want something strong, but not too strong, I'd suggest picking this one up and giving it a try!

03 July 2017

Tobacco Reporter: Snus Con 2017. 3 July 2017.

The first ever Snus Con came to St. Louis in 2017. It was a great event for snus professionals, consumers, and enthusiasts. We were fortunate to have press come to cover the first event and one of the publications in attendance, Tobacco Reporter, wrote a piece on the first ever Snus Con. A special thank you to Taco Tuinstra for covering the event and sitting down for an interview with me. Taco gave me permission to share his article with our readers and I found it to be a great article covering the event!  If you want to check it out, click out the link below to view the full PDF.

Click here to view "Chewing The Fat" by Taco Tuinstra of Tobacco Reporter.

01 July 2017

Granit Chew Bags - Reviews. 1 July 2017.

The Nordic Chew/"chew bag" category has been growing more and more over the past few years. It seems like more and more companies have been making "chew bag" products so they can sell their products in the EU, where Swedish Snus is banned. I did a video on Swedish Snus VS Nordic Chew if you're new to this category - it is very informative about the differences in these products. Spoiler alert, there really aren't any differences other than the name and the fact that the tobacco is cut in most of these, not ground. We've seen GN Tobacco's Alika Chew and Islay Whisky Chew Bags, Swedish Match's General Chew Bags and General Long Cut Chewing Tobacco, AG Snus's Ink Chew Bags and their U-Sample Chew Bags and Malmö Kardus Chew, Fiedler and Lundgren's Lundgren's X-Strong Chewing Tobacco, Gotlandssnus's Jakobsson's Ultra Strong Chew Bags, and V2 Tobacco's Al Capone Chewing Bags/Al Capone Chewing Tobacco and Thunder Chew/Thunder Chew Bags.  Needless to say, most companies are jumping in on the chew bag category where snus is illegal in the EU.  Now, Fiedler and Lundgren has launched four new chew bag products under the Granit name.

If you're new to chew bags, I always like to do a comparison between snus and chew bags in my reviews.  Luckily, at the time of this review, I had some Granit snus nearby to compare to the chew bags tobacco.  If you click the photo you can zoom in and get a closer look at it.  Basically, the snus tobacco on the left is ground, and the chew bag tobacco on the right is cut.  Both seem to be similar in moisture amounts, both are pasteurized tobacco products, both come in similar size white portions that feel the same in the lip.  The only difference is the name and how the tobacco is cut.

Granit Chew - Licorice (Strong White)

Going into this review, I didn't have much information.  I didn't have a flavor description or nicotine content.  I know that the can weighs 19.2 grams and contains 24 portions, meaning 0.8 gram portions.  Granit Strong Snus has a nicotine content of 12mg/g, so I imagine this product has a similar nicotine content since it's made by the same manufacturer.  Also, like Granit Snus, this can has the FlexLid, which is a rubber type bottom in the catch lid which allows it to expand as you put more used portions in it.  This is a great innovation that I've been a fan of for quite some time!

Back in 2014, I reviewed Granit Lakrits White Portion Snus. This product was discontinued, but the Granit Licorice Chew Bag product reminds me a lot of that one.  When you open the can, the aroma is a present black licorice smell with a touch of sweetness and a mild tobacco hint.  The pouches are soft and feel quite comfortable in the lip!  As far as the taste goes, it's actually pretty good.  The black licorice flavor comes through in a very mellow way, accompanied by a light touch of sweetness and a little salt.  The tobacco flavor comes out about 30 minutes in and blends pretty well with the licorice flavor.  It's not a lot of tobacco taste, however, and comes through in a more mild way.  The nicotine on this one has a pretty nice kick and feels to be between a strong and an extra strong.  This one also has a nice, long lasting flavor; I've found I can enjoy this product for an hour to an hour and a half.  Licorice lovers, give this one a try!

Granit Chew - Mint (Strong White and Extra Strong White)

For these two products, I didn't have a flavor description or nicotine content for either one.  I know that both can weigh 19.2 grams and contains 24 portions each, meaning 0.8 gram portions.  Granit Strong Snus has a nicotine content of 12mg/g, so I imagine the Granit Strong White product has a similar nicotine content since it's made by the same manufacturer.  I'm not sure what the Extra Strong has in the nicotine department. I know the Lundgren's Extra Strong product has 16mg/g of nicotine, so it may be that much since it's made by the same manufacturer - but I'm not sure.  Like the previous product, this one also has the FlexLid, which is probably the greatest snus innovation since I started reviewing snus.

These products reminds me a lot of Lundgren's LG Slim Fresh Snus, so if you've ever had that one - these ones are a lot like that one in the aroma/taste department!  When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a sharp peppermint smell accompanied by a hint of menthol.  The portions are soft and comfortable in the lip and, since they're mint products, come with a nice cooling sensation in the lip and mouth!  The taste is a mild taste of peppermint and a gentle hint of menthol.  It's not too sweet and comes through in a pleasant way.  The Strong Version packs a nice kick and feels to be between a strong and an extra strong.  The Extra Strong Version kicks even more, and feels to be firmly at the extra strong level.  Both of these have a long lasting flavor; I've found these both last up to an hour to an hour and a half!  If you're a fan of mint snus, these are worth a try!

Granit Chew - Original (Strong White)

For this review, I didn't have a flavor description or nicotine content like with the other products.  I know that the can weighs 19.2 grams and contains 24 portions, meaning 0.8 gram portions.  Granit Strong Snus has a nicotine content of 12mg/g, so I imagine this product has a similar nicotine content since it's made by the same manufacturer.  This product also has a FlexLid like the other products, which you already know I am a big fan of!

Honestly, this product reminds me a lot of Granit Stark Vit Snus. When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a present smell of citrus, a mild tobacco aroma, and a light peppery smell. The portions are comfortable in the lip and feel very much like a regular white portion snus. The taste is the traditional taste of Swedish Snus, but in a chew bag format! A present taste of bergamot, a mild tobacco character in the background, a hint of pepper, and a little salt. The nicotine feels to be between a strong and an extra strong; it packs a nice kick! The flavor on this one also lasts a good amount of time; I can usually enjoy these for an hour to an hour and a half! If you're a lover of traditional flavored Swedish Snus but don't have access to snus due to legality, I'd definitely suggest trying these out.

As far as chew bag products go, all four of these are great releases from Fiedler and Lundgren and well worth a try!

27 June 2017

General & Göteborg's Rapé 22 (Limited Edition) - Reviews. 27 June 2017.

General 22 and Göteborg's Rapé 22 are two "temporary" products from Swedish Match that seem to be a more widely available test market. Swedish Match describes them by saying they are "a temporary variant in white format with a taste that most snusers recognize. Under the lid are 22 soft and strong portions which fill out a little extra. The purpose of the edition is to evaluate the product's new and specially developed features together with our snusers. More full portions - through a new way of treating the tobacco. More strength and taste - through a new way of refining tobacco into snus. More gentle and softer portion - through a new way to pack the portion."  My friend Patrick sent these to me, so I wanted to say a special thank you to him.  These weren't made available to the US, so it's unfortunate that US snus fans didn't get to send in their feedback.

General 22 White Large Portion

The flavor description for General 22 says, "The flavor is the same that has always characterized General - Light and spicy tobacco character with distinctive elements of bergamot and citrus. A big portion that is dry on the surface with moist content for low purity and a lasting taste release." This snus comes in a 17.6 gram can with 22 portions, for 0.8 gram portions. The nicotine content is 14mg/g (1.4%) which breaks down to 11.2mg/portion.

When you open the can, the aroma smells like regular General, but I notice more present citrus and pepper in the aroma. The real standout of this product is the portions. They are incredibly soft and feel very plump for only being 0.8 grams. The tobacco inside the pouch is also very soft, so it doesn't take as much fluffing to get them into the lip! The taste seems to be more present in this one than regular General White Portion. I notice a more robust and well rounded tobacco taste, as well as a stronger presence of bergamot and pepper. It also seems like the flavor comes on quicker. Being a white portion, the flavor is long lasting; I've found I can enjoy this snus for up to an hour, sometimes more! The nicotine packs a nice kick and feels to be right at the strong level.

The Verdict:  Comparing this one to General White Portion, I would say I like General White Portion's flavor more due to it being mild and gentle.  That's what I look for when I go for a white portion.  I will, however, say that I prefer the portions of this one more than the regular General White Portion.

Göteborg's Rapé 22 White Large Portion

The flavor description for Göteborg's Rapé 22 says, "The flavor is the same that has always been called Göteborg’s Rapé, a light and spicy tobacco character with clear elements of lavender and juniper, as well as some wood and citrus. A big portion that is dry on the surface with moist content for low purity and a lasting taste release." This snus comes in a 17.6 gram can with 22 portions, for 0.8 gram portions. The nicotine content is 14mg/g (1.4%) which breaks down to 11.2mg/portion.

The aroma of this one is much like regular Göteborg's Rapé but it seems the juniper is more present in the aroma. The floral notes and herbal notes are mild and in the background. Like General 22, the portions are fantastic. They are incredibly soft and feel great in the lip.  The tobacco in the pouch is also very soft as well so I didn't have to fluff these as much!  Even though they are only 0.8 grams, they still feel quite plump! The taste of this one is the familiar Göteborg's Rapé taste: a present flavor of juniper, a mild hint of citrus, and light herbal/floral notes in the background. With this one, I notice more tobacco peeking out of the flavor, which I didn't pick up as much of in the regular GR. Also, the juniper taste seems to be more bold with this one than regular GR. The taste lasts a good amount of time; I've been able to enjoy this one for an hour to an hour and a half. The nicotine feels to be at about the strong level, as well.

The Verdict:  I enjoyed this one, but still prefer the taste of the regular GR.  However, I do prefer the portions on this snus.  They are fantastic and incredibly soft.

As far as these two products go, I hope Swedish Match carries the portion material and tobacco consistency forward.  The portions are very soft, and the tobacco inside the pouch is quite soft as well!

22 June 2017

ON! Nicotine Pouches (8mg) - Review. 22 June 2017.

Two years ago, I reviewed ON! Nicotine Pouches in the Level 1 and Level 3 strengths. Today, we are going to talk about some new releases in the ON! Nicotine Family, these coming in the 8mg nicotine level! The nicotine pouch category seems to be growing in popularity, as more people are wanting to enjoy nicotine but avoid tobacco. I recently reviewed Zyn NT by Swedish Match, and ALTid Nicotine Pouches, two other products in the nicotine pouch category. When it cones to ON! Nicotine Pouches, they describe it like this: “Instant Release. Absolute Discretion. ON! uses 100% food grade ingredients and naturally derived nicotine crystals in a clean pouch. Life is full of challenges and moments when concentration matters. When you can use mental clarity to help focus on the task at hand, achieve your goals, and get the job done.” ON! Nicotine Pouches come in 7 flavors and 5 strengths - 1, 2, 3, 4, and 8mg.

How to use it:

Using ON! Nicotine Pouches is much like using regular Swedish Snus.  It's very easy to use.  You take a pouch, put it in your upper lip, and enjoy!  It couldn't be easier to use.  The pouches are discrete, and involve no spitting! Their description says this: “Select a fresh pouch and place up under your lip, against your gum. Don’t worry, no one will be able to see it. Now, just wait for the gentle tingling sensation and enjoy. You can move it’s position, but no need to chew. Once you’ve finished enjoying, please use the disposal in the back of the pack or find your nearest bin.”

What's in it?

For those who are curious about what's inside ON! and how it's made, I wanted to cut open a pouch and show what's inside. ON! is a patented white, dry nicotine pouch.  These pouches are free from tobacco.  The nicotine is derived naturally from tobacco, though the pouches do not contain tobacco.  The nicotine is crystalized, which provides for a release faster than that of tobacco. You can see inside the pouch it looks like table salt. ON! comes with 20 pouches in a 5.3 gram can. The nicotine content is 8mg per pouch.  The nicotine content on these actually has a solid delivery to it and feels to be comparable to regular strength snus!  The pouches seem dry at first, but become more comfortable as they become more moist in the lip.

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Berry

The flavor description says, "Wild berry flavored pouches. Designed with Redbull lovers in mind, each pouch packs the perfect punch of delicious berry flavor. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a mild, fruity aroma.  It’s similar to raspberry and cherry.  The taste is very much like the aroma - it is a light, fruity taste.  There’s a mild touch of sweetness to it, as well.  The taste seems to be a mix of raspberry and cherry, with the raspberry being more present in the flavor.

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Cinnamon

The flavor description says, "Bold cinnamon flavored pouches deliver a sweet and savory on! moment for the most daring of palettes. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a mild, pleasant cinnamon aroma.  It reminds me of Big Red chewing gum.  The taste is a gentle, mild cinnamon flavor.  It’s not too sweet and not overbearing.  It’s quite nice!

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Citrus

The flavor description says, "Fresh citrus flavored pouches. Let citrus transport your taste buds to margaritas on the beach of Mexico for 20 minutes of refreshing citrus flavor. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a clean lemon smell.  It reminds me of lemon cough drops.  I also notice a mild tingle in the lip when I put one of these portions in.  The taste is a pleasant, mild, lightly tart flavor of lemon.  It’s pretty tasty stuff!

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Coffee

The flavor description says, "Rich coffee pouches deliver the perfect, smooth, latte-like- blend making even the best barista a little jealous of our recipe. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

I’m not a coffee drinker, but I still enjoyed this one.  The aroma is a mild smell of coffee beans with a light sweetness - much like a frappuccino!  The taste is a mild and light taste of coffee with a gentle hint of sweetness.  It’s a mellow taste, but very enjoyable.

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Mint

The flavor description says, "Crisp mint flavored pouches leave your mouth feeling cool and refreshed. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

The aroma of this one is a sharp mint smell.  It seems close to peppermint, but with a light touch of menthol in the background.  Being a mint product, you’ll encounter a mild cooling presence in your lip.  The flavor profile is a light, airy taste of mint.  It’s pretty gentle, and comes with a light touch of menthol in the background.

ON! Nicotine Pouches: Original

The flavor description says, "Original flavored pouches are for the serious, perfect for those that want to enjoy the nicotine release but keep a neutral flavor. Each pack contains 20 pouches and each pouch delivers up to 20 minutes of concentration."

This one was pretty interesting.  When I opened the can, I didn't encounter any aroma other than the pouch material itself.  When I put one in the lip, I encountered no flavor, either!  I pick up a light sweetness when I lick the pouch, but I found no flavor at all.  I imagine this one is for someone who wants nicotine and nothing else!

As far as these products go, I personally wouldn't use them.  I'm a snus guy, and that's my preference when I consume nicotine.  However, I can say they're good products for what they are.  There are people out there who want to quit smoking and don't want to consume tobacco.  This is a great way for people to enjoy nicotine while avoiding tobacco at the same time.  If you're looking for an aid in quitting smoking, I definitely suggest giving these a try!

For more information you can check out their website, or find them on Facebook.

20 June 2017

Lundgren's Skåne Vit Slim - Review. 20 June 2017.

I originally reviewed Lundgren's Skåne Vit back in November of 2015, and it's become of my personal favorites. I find the flavor to be unique and quite enjoyable! Now, Fiedler and Lundgren have released it in a slim portion version. This one, however, is not perforated like the regular size Lundgren's Skåne Vit. The flavor description for this snus says, "Fresh and full-bodied taste of tobacco, and with notes of wild berries."  This product comes in a 19.2 gram can with 24 portions, for 0.8 gram portions.  This is a regular strength, 8mg/g (0.8%) snus.  With 0.8 gram portions, that breaks the nicotine content down to  6.4mg/portion.  This snus also comes with the FlexLock/FlexLid, which is a neat addition!  It is a rubbery material that expands as you put more used portions into it.  To me, this is one of the greatest snus innovations in recent memory.

As far as this snus goes, it's virtually the same as the regular Lundgren's Skåne Vit, but in a slim portion with a milder taste. When you open the can, the aroma that comes through is a light smell of pine, a mild berry presence, and a light herbal aroma. The portions are slim, and have a soft portion material that feels comfortable in the lip. These, however, are not perforated. What I've found is that the flavor comes out slower than the perforated, regular sized portions, and the taste is also milder than the regular sized version.  Don't get me wrong, it's still a great tasting snus!  The flavor profile is a mild berry taste which reminds me of a light cranberry flavor.  There is a nice salt balance, a taste of pine, and a light herbal flavor.  There is also a gentle earthy tobacco presence in the background.  The taste lasts a good amount of time with these; I've been able to enjoy this snus for up to an hour!  The nicotine strength feels to be about regular strength, as well.

It's rare that I will say the slim version is inferior to the regular size version.  However, with this one, I enjoy the regular size version more.  The flavor releases quicker and seems to be more present in the perforated version.  This isn't a bad snus by any means, it has a great taste!  But for me personally, I'll stick with the regular sized, perforated version.