THE SMELL OF JOCK
Let me begin by first pointing you to the comments underneath a post on Dovbear’s blog (see here: http://www.haloscan.com/comments/dovbear/3363981839643963800/), and then pointing you towards a lovely photo on e-kvetcher's blog (see here: http://search-for-emes.blogspot.com/2007/07/if-youre-planning-to-run-with-bulls.html).
Now breathe deeply. What do you smell?
All of the above serves as preamble - this post is actually about tobacco.
I have a tin of Rattray's Jocks Mixture on my desk. I am airing it out - I had forgotten that I had added some extra moisture to it a while back, and the tobacco has since then turned a tarry speckled brown-black and smells marvelously figgy. I keep reaching over and sticking my nose into the tin - it's like smelling a spice-cake cooling on the rack. Perhaps after drizzling some whiskey down the center. Autumnal and toasty-rich. Pomegranatish.
Like an old-fashioned drogistery with a row of odd herbals. Like a countryside bar-billard in late autumn. Like a grossier's warehouse with crates of tea and boxes of spice.
I am sheerly intoxicated by the aroma.
Jocks Mixture used to be a blend of Latakia and Black Cavendish, full-bodied and spicy, with a wine-like fermented tang. Zesty.
In the day when the mixtures were still made in Charles Rattray's shop in Perth (at 15B High Street), the blends were truly magnificent. Then in the mid-eighties the blending was farmed out to the Danes, who made a complete pigs breakfast of it, followed by the Germans, who are actually fairly decent. Unfortunately by the time the Germans got a hold of the blends, it had become almost impossible to purchase varietal Turkish tobacco, and Syrian Latakia was nearly unavailable (and most blenders had substituted Cyprian Latakia).
So it has not been the same for years.
The Germans do make a good product. But there is something distinctly missing.....
The smell of Jock.
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