19 March 2018

Oden's Cold Extreme (Slim White Portion) - Review. 19 March 2018.

The "Cold" flavor from GN Tobacco is arguably the most popular mint flavor on the market today. I'm not sure if it is in sales, but it's certainly the one I see discussed the most.  Oden's Cold Extreme (White Dry) seems to be the most discussed mint snus I see on social media, as well.  The Cold flavor from GNT is usually a part of their "firsts", as well. In October, 2015, Oden's Cold Extreme: White Portion was the first white portion they ever released.  In April, 2016, Oden's Cold Extreme: Slim White Dry was one of their first slim white dry products released.  And now this product is their first slim white portion.  The flavor description for this snus says, "Powerful but well rounded and flavorful tobacco blend with clear and cooling flavors of real mint oils.” This product comes in a 20 gram can with 23 portions for 0.87 gram portions. The nicotine content is 22mg/g (2.2%), which breaks down to 19.13mg/portion.

When you open the can, the aroma that greets you is a fresh, mild, lightly sweet spearmint aroma. Being their first slim white portion, I was curious to see what the portion would be like. The portion material is very soft, and feels great in the lip. The tobacco is firm, and seems to be isolated to one side of the pouch, so I suggest fluffing these to move the tobacco around a bit. In the lip I encountered a mild cooling presence, along with a light burn. The flavor of this one seems to be closer to Oden’s Extreme Cold: White Portion; it is a straightforward spearmint flavor, but comes across as relatively mild and gentle. It has a nice amount of sweetness to it, but it’s not overdone, it’s not over the top, and it’s not as sweet as other spearmint products on the market; it’s very well balanced! The nicotine hits pretty quick; I feel it within 5 minutes and it has a solid kick to it! The flavor lasts about an hour, which is normal for most white portion products.

If you like the Oden's Extreme: Cold lineup, this is definitely worth trying.  In my opinion, it's the best format of all the Cold products that GNT makes.  If you like spearmint products, and enjoy the slim white format, this is definitely one to pick up!

14 March 2018

DUS Aluminum Slim Can - Review. 14 March 2018

Today we're going to be talking about the new DUS Aluminum Slim Can. I recently got this in my order from SnusCENTRAL.com because I saw it was cheaper than a regular Icetool Slim Can, and I wanted to see how it compared. It's interesting to note that the DUS Can is $24.89 USD, and the Icetool Slim Can is $33.64 USD.  That's a difference of $8.75 in price!  I've been saying for years that I'm surprised more companies aren't competing with Icetool, but it seems like DUS is doing just that with this new product.  When you get the can, it comes in this nice black box.

Comparing it to the Icetool Slim Can box you'll notice that the DUS box is much thicker than the Icetool Slim Can box.
Also, inside the little sleeve is a box that the DUS can comes in, and it is wrapped up and protected quite nicely.  The Icetool Slim Can comes inside the box but without all the extra padding.

And here it is - the DUS Aluminum Slim Can!  It's a really nice, clean looking snus accessory can.

Looking at a side by side with the Icetool Slim Can, they look virtually identical.  I notice on SnusCENTRAL they have the DUS can listed as weighing 40 grams and the Icetool can as weighing 50 grams.  They really don't feel that much different in weight when you hold them, however.

Opening the DUS can, it looks virtually identical to the Icetool can; I really don't notice that much of a difference, honestly

Also, it holds a full can of snus!  I put in 24 portions of Grov White Portion and it fit the same as it would in the Icetool Slim Can!

So, if you're looking for a slim snus accessory can and want to save a few bucks, the DUS can is definitely worth considering!  Honestly, I don't notice a difference between this one and the Icetool Slim Can.

12 March 2018

Oden's Menthol Extreme White Dry - Review. 12 March 2018.

I've been wanting to review this for a while, and SnusCENTRAL.com finally got it in stock, so today we're talking about the new Oden's Menthol Extreme White Dry. I've been excited to review this one because I was a menthol smoker, and there aren't many menthol products. What excited me about this one was that it wasn't the usual eucalyptus flavor, this one actually tastes like tobacco. Also, when I'm sick, I use Catch Eucalyptus/Menthol when I'm sick. It's great for the throat. The flavor description for this one says, "Oden's Extreme Menthol Xylitol White Dry Portion Snus is a high nicotine mentholated tobacco snus in a white dry format.  Xylitol not only adds a bit of sweetness, but kills bad bacteria in your mouth!  If you like menthol, nicotine, and a healthy mouth, this is a snus you must try!"  I'm not a doctor, but WebMD has more info on Xylitol if you're curious. Basically, Xylitol is naturally occurring and used as a sugar substitute. Xylitol is also said to prevent tooth decay and can act against some bacterias that cause infections.

This product comes in a 10 gram can with 13 portions, for 0.77 grams each. The nicotine content is 22mg/g (2.2%), which breaks down to 16.92mg/portion.

When you open the can, the aroma is a heavy menthol smell with a hint of mild tobacco character in the background. When you put a portion in your lip you’ll encounter an immediate cooling sensation, along with a mild burn, as well. Being a white dry, the portions are a little dry at first but the portion material is pretty soft. The longer you have it in and the more moist it gets, the more comfortable it becomes. The taste is really interesting, it caught me off guard. I was expecting more menthol in the taste, but I taste mostly tobacco. There is a menthol presence, but it’s mild and in the background. The nicotine is strong, and hits pretty quickly. The flavor lasts around an hour to an hour and a half, a benefit of the white dry format!

I'm glad this product exists, however I wish it existed when I was trying to quit smoking!  If you're a menthol smoker looking to quit smoking, this is a great product to try.  It's certainly strong enough to help you quit smoking!

11 March 2018

Skruf Slim Fresh Ultrastark White (Review) - 11 March 2018.

The Skruf Slim Fresh line is quite a popular one. Ever since Skruf Slim Fresh was launched in 2011, it has easily been one of the most popular mint products. The regular strength Skruf Slim Fresh is no longer produced, however Skruf Slim Fresh Stark and Skruf Slim Fresh Extra Stark are still in the Skruf lineup. Now, Skruf has decided to go a notch higher and release Skruf Slim Fresh Ultrastark White. Side note, I really like the word "Ultrastark". Some of you may remember, last year I hosted the first ever Snus Con in St. Louis. Skruf was one of the presenters there and they mentioned to me that they along with Swedish Match felt there should be a cap on how high nicotine levels should be in snus products, that level being 2.6% (or 26mg/g by the old standards). Swedish Match began releasing Super Strong products recently at the 2.6% level, and Skruf recently joined them, releasing Skruf Blackline Ultra Strong this year as well.  This release is another "ultra strong" level snus, clocking in at the 2.6% nicotine level.

The flavor description for this snus says, "Skruf Ultra Strong snus has a sweet taste of fresh spearmint." I usually tend to disagree with most webstores on this, however, as I notice more peppermint presence in the product than spearmint. This product comes in a 16.6 gram can with 24 portions for 0.69 gram portions. The nicotine content is 2.6% (or 26mg/g), which breaks down to 17.98mg/portion.

When you open a can of Skruf Slim Fresh Ultrastark, the aroma that greets you is a really sharp smell of peppermint with a hint of menthol.  I was surprised when I put a portion in my lip that I encountered both a burn and a cooling presence.  Usually I only get the cooling presence, but with this one I got a nice burn, as well. The taste is much like other version of Skruf Slim Fresh, it has a present but relatively mild taste of peppermint with a hint of menthol. It’s also not overly sweet, which is nice. The nicotine hits really quickly; I timed it and was feeling it 7 minutes after I put a portion in. It’s a strong kick, too. One could almost say it’s an ultra strong kick. I can’t keep this in very long so I can’t speak to the longevity of it, as it is stronger than I usually use. However, most white portions usually last around an hour so I assume this is much the same.

08 March 2018

General Kardus Spring 2018 - Review. 8 March 2018.

It's time, General Kardus Spring 2018 is here! Kardus is the most exclusive, and expensive, snus Swedish Match releases each year. This year is the first release in the "Gastronomy Series". For those who don't know, gastronomy is defined as "the practice or art of choosing, cooking, and eating good food." This year's release was made in partnership with restauranteur Karl Ljung, and is a truly unique flavor compared to past releases!  I'm going to give a little background in this review, but if you want more details my friend Andreas from Stiff Upper Lip translated the inner book into English, and I put it up in PDF format if you want to check that out, here.

This year’s Kardus was made in collaboration with Karl Ljung, a restauranteur and snus user, and Swedish Match’s Master Blender, Lars Öberg. Ljung noted that snus is simply tobacco, salt, water and flavoring. He believes that snus is like cooking; no matter how much you refine it, you still start with these ingredients.  He believes that to produce a quality snus, you have to star with the basics.  This year's release, once again, is all lamina. This means only the best parts of the tobacco are used. The tobacco used is from India, Spain, and the Philippines and is cut into 0.72mm slices according to the single cut method. This gives a different taste sensation and feeling under the lip than regular los snus. This year's flavor profile is inspired by Swedish herbs. This year's flavor is described as, "dark and spicy. The herbal compliments are clear; rosemary and thyme are noticed, together with citrus, dark berries, and a hint of spruce." Only 1000 were produced this year, and each container has 150 grams of snus. The nicotine content is listed as 14mg/g. The price point is 999sek, or $120.77 USD.

Mouth-Blown Glass Vessel
This year has a special vessel; it is a mouth-blown glass vessel made by Orrefors glassworks in Småland. The Swedish glass industry is world famous, and each glass vessel was hand blown by the skilled craftsmen at Orrefors. The text and signature are blasted in advance. Since the glass vessel is handmade, that means each vessel is one of a kind and unique. Orrefors is linked to gastronomy as much of their glass is used in Swedish restaurants. The green color is due to the herbal taste of this year's edition. Karl Ljung said that he really liked the green colors and that "good taste also means having a taste for the beautiful and elegant."

The Review
So, all that being said, let's talk about this snus. When I open the vessel, the aroma that greets me is very herb heavy. I detect rosemary inn the front, along with thyme. The tobacco character is rich, dark, and has a slight spice to the scent. There is also a light hint of spruce. One thing that surprised me this year is how easy the tobacco is to work with; this is the first Kardus release I’ve ever been able to handbake! The tobacco is soft in the lip, and the prilla stays together really well. The flavor releases quickly, but does mature the longer you have it in. Right off the bat you’ll detect the dark, robust tobacco character. The herbal presence is the star of this snus, with flavors of rosemary and thyme mingling with the tobacco character. The longer I have it in, the more I notice the spruce character. It’s not as present as the rosemary and thyme, but it’s a rather nice accompaniment. I didn’t really detect much citrus; there’s a small hint, but it’s not too bold. And I didn’t notice any berry taste. The nicotine feels to be firmly at the strong level. The flavor lasts quite a long time; I can usually keep a prilla in for 45 to 55 minutes before it starts to slide and the flavor fades.

This snus is a very unique release.  As someone who studied Culinary Arts, I really appreciate the gastronomy approach to General Kardus. Those closest thing I can compare it to is the Göteborgs Rapé (2017 Local/Cities Edition) which had a taste of rosemary to it. But, this is much better.  If you're a snus fan, Kardus is a no brainer.  It's the most exclusive release Swedish Match releases every year, and well worth the cost.  As of right now, it's not for sale to the US, but who knows, that may change. If you're in Sweden, you can buy it from the Swedish Match webstore and have it shipped to you. A special thanks to my friend Michael in Sweden who grabbed this for me.

05 March 2018

Coming Soon From GN Tobacco: Magnusson. 5 March 2018.

It looks like GN Tobacco is getting ready for a big and exciting release in 2018. This is an entirely new line from GN Tobacco called "Magnusson". This product is made in collaboration with the man who created the portion snus format in 1972 and it carries his name. He’s been heavily involved with this product line, including everything in the blend. I was told he was also behind Rallarsnus, which was before my time. This product is set to release in one month, so I’m assuming that means around April, 2018.  The version you see pictured here is the Magnusson: Organic White Stark. If you recall from my review of Clove Explosion, the GN Organic series is a new line from GN Tobacco.

GN is also releasing a Magnusson: Stark Classic White, which is not a part of the GN Organic series. When I spoke with GN Tobacco this morning about this product, I could tell how excited they were to release it. They told me that they have decided to take on the tobacco flavor market, much like they did with the mint flavor market. Today, they are number one in the mint category and are now looking to take on real tobacco taste.  This couldn't be more exciting.  For years, it seems like manufacturers have been paying more and more attention to the mint flavor profile.  Now, in collaboration with the man who invented the portion snus, GN Tobacco is getting serious about tobacco flavored products, something that the snus world has been sorely lacking lately.  I'm looking forward to trying these products when they release and will be doing full reviews on them!

04 March 2018

Blue Ocean & Jagarpris (Tobacco Cuts) - Review. 4 March 2018.

I originally reviewed these products back in 2012, and after that I never really gave much thought to them. However, I was recently browsing Northerner.com's Nordic Chew section and found that they were back!  A friend of mine sent some over for me to review, and I've really been enjoying them.

In this review, I'm not going to get into the whole Nordic Chew vs Swedish Snus discussion, but if you want to know more about what Nordic Chew/chewing tobacco/chew bags are, check out this video. Last time I talked to AG Snus in Denmark, makers of these products, about what goes into making them, they told me they are "a twist chewing tobacco product. In the manufacturing process the tobacco cuts are spun out of whole tobacco leaves and are comparable in the size to the contents of a snus pouch.” As far as how you use them, Northerner's description says, "You place it between you jaw and cheek like snus and leave it there, while some of this nicotine is being released satisfying the need for nicotine. If you want additional nicotine, gently squeeze it between your teeth. No spitting required." Personally, I just put them in my upper lip and use them like snus.

Blue Ocean Tobacco Cuts

The product description says, "Blue Ocean Tobacco Cuts has a flavor of tobacco with fresh mint and some sweetness from licorice. Tobacco cuts are portion sized bits of spun chewing tobacco." The tobacco cuts come in a 16 gram can with 21 cuts, for around 0.76 grams per cut. The nicotine content is 14mg/g (1.4%), which is around 10.67mg per cut.

I’ve been a big fan of Blue Ocean snus for many years. Anytime I go to the beach, I always bring it with me! These tobacco cuts are a little different, however. The aroma is a dark, rich tobacco smell. There’s a light and mildly sweet aroma of mint in the background but again, it’s very light. The cuts are firm, and not too soft at first, but they become more comfortable with time the longer you have them in your lip and the more moist they get. The taste is a dark, pronounced tobacco taste. There is a very light licorice taste in the background, a gentle sweetness, and a very, very light touch of mint. The nicotine feels to be right at the regular strength level. The flavor lasts a solid amount of time; with these, I can keep them in for an hour to an hour and a half!

Jägarpris Tobacco Cuts

The product description says, "Jagarpris Tobacco Cuts has a very dominant tobacco flavor with a fresh touch of citrus notes. Tobacco cuts are portion sized bits of spun chewing tobacco." The tobacco cuts come in a 16 gram can with 21 cuts, for around 0.76 grams per cut. The nicotine content is 14mg/g (1.4%), which is around 10.67mg per cut.

Jagarpris, along with Blue Ocean, was one of the first products AG Snus launched. Though it's no longer made, I still recall that I enjoyed the taste of it. This one is a little different than the snus, from what I recall. When you open the can, the aroma is a dark, rich tobacco smell with a light touch of citrus. The tobacco cuts aren’t too soft, and not too comfortable at first when you put them in your lip. However, as they get more moist, they do soften up. The taste is a really dark, rich tobacco taste. The flavor is very focused on the tobacco, however there is a mild touch of citrus in the background.  It's not like your traditional Swedish Snus flavor; it's more of a tobacco centric flavor profile but with a little citrus in the background to compliment the tobacco taste.  The nicotine feels to be about regular strength. I find the flavor lasts a good amount of time; I’ve been able to keep these in for an hour to an hour and a half!

If you like los snus, you'll probably enjoy these products.  They stay together really well in the lip, have a nice taste, and a solid nicotine delivery.  They're sold on Northerner's Nordic Chew section, so I'm assuming they're for the EU and those who can't get snus.