With summer almost gone, it's time to break out your fall vices: brown liquors, sweater-lust, and of course, pipe-smoking. We asked America's foremost pipe expert Richard Carleton Hacker for advice on taking up a habit that'll delight your palate and make you smell just like higher education. Richard recommends novices get condescension-free help at Nat Sherman (12 East 42nd Street). Go for a briar pipe in the $65-$125 range (Peterson, Nording, Savinelli, or Stanwell) -- anything cheaper won't draw smoke well, and you'll develop the crumpled cheeks of an 1840s gold prospector. As for tobacco, start mild. Here are some options: Aromatic (flavored): Davidoff Cool (not affiliated with Kools) English (unflavored): Dunhill Early Morning Pipe Value: Try the "House Blend", which dealers'll let you "test puff". (Remember: when shopping w/ friends, always test-puff - test-puff - pass.) To load, trickle in tobacco 'til the bowl's filled, then gently tamp down. Add/tamp two more layers for a "springy" mound. Light w/ long wooden matches or a clean-burning butane lighter -- cardboard matches/fluid lighters leave an "Early Morning Chemical" residue. To prevent disgustingness, clean after every use. Lastly: although pipe users never actually inhale, you might still have health concerns -- fears Richard counters by noting that even his doctor smokes a pipe. The fact that Richard's doctor is 1) very distinguished looking and 2) still alive, should be all the reassurance you need to load your first bowl.
This Caribbean Villa Comes With Its Own Private Beach