Blog by Norman Skiba
For 50 years now I have been enjoying and observing that there is something special and magical about Preben Holm pipes. I have always loved his pipes. Looking back, I can say that I have owned more Preben Holm pipes than any other pipe maker – period. Overall, they are unique; some wild and some are quite tame and reserved, by his standards.
To me – there is something that I have struggled, and still fail, to describe regarding the overall smoking experience of a Preben Holm pipe. I have mostly had fine to superb smoking Preben’s, and I have had a few that were ok, and also a few rare ones that just had issues: predominantly a bad gurgling. Yet even the few bad or not-so-good ones all had this Quality and taste and smoking experience across the board with the best of them. There is a consistency there that I struggle to explain. This character/taste/sensory experience that makes it a Preben. After a week of straight meerschaum smoking I had a bowl this morning in a Preben and it was marvelous. I look forward to another bowl out of the Preben tomorrow before I head out to the top vineyard to get my nets on. (I did the side vineyard after the bowl this morning.) So, again, these experiences make me wonder and question just what it is that makes the Preben’s so unique? What is it about the nature of the briar he uses that are so different and special unlike any other pipe maker. And no, I am not just talking about Danish pipe makers. I mean all others that I have ever smoked or owned. There is something about his pipes that make me still love the pipe and pipe smoking (with my favorite tobacco as a partner in all of this), and briar. After all of these years I still cannot put my finger on that special dynamic. Yet I am in awe when I light up one of his pipes. They are not only beautiful in so many ways; but they smoke so sweetly and with a subtlety to them. So, what is it about a Preben?