The Legendary Eric Nording Pipes

September 15, 2015

Just like premium cigars, not all smoking pipes are created equal, but here is the difference. The average cigar costs between $5.00 to $15.00 bucks, if it stinks, not that big of a deal. On the other hand, if you chose a pipe that does not smoke well, you are looking at a blown investment of at least $20.00 and up. In the past, I have invested upwards of $100 for pipes that simply tasted awful.  Early on, I began to realize that choosing the proper pipe takes a lot more investigative work. You have to research the brands history of quality control, types of briar used, machining, and overall customer satisfaction. In addition, just like cigars, price doesn’t necessarily dictate quality. In fact, some of my most tasty briars were found in the tobacconists bargain bin!

Having been a pipe smoker for many decades, and through a lot of trial and costly error, I have come to rely on only those brands of smoking pipes that have a proven record of consistently smoking cool and sweet.  Today, some of my “go to” pipes are Peterson, Rossi, Savinelli, James Norman, and Molina.  When I have some cash to burn, I will occasionally add an amazing work of art created by the famous Japanese artisan Tsuge from the Drew Estate collection.

Today, I will discuss one of my all-time favorites.

Born in 1939, in Copenhagen, Denmark, Erik Nording started his career as a blacksmith at the age of 15. He worked for his father, also a blacksmith at the family’s razor blade and garden tool factory.

After graduating from engineering school; Nording had lost interest in the family factory and began pursuing his real passion, making pipes. Erik credits his father, who trained him on this fine hobby, as an aid to relaxation.

With his background, he could make anything out of metal if he had a drawing to work from, so why not do the same with pipes?”

He started his career by visiting pipe shops, asking if any of them had customers who wanted pipes carved to specific designs, and the response was overwhelming. In fact, when the rest of the world found out about the fancy pipes Erik was carving in Denmark, there was no limit to the demand. In 1967, Nording hired his first employee and the business quickly expanded.

At the end of the 1970s, demand for fancy (freehand) pipes dropped drastically, and many of these artisans closed up shop. Those who wanted to stay in business had to change their product line. Nording begrudgingly used the money that he earned to develop a series of classics shapes, which were now the trend in Denmark and abroad.

Today, the Nording name is synonymous with top-quality pipe making.  About 20,000-25,000 Nording pipes are produced every year; of those between 400 and 500 are made by Erik himself in his workshop in Copenhagen, where he once again, almost entirely focuses on his favorite style, the freehand.

If you’re shopping for a truly unique, one of a kind, hand carved pipe that feels good in the hand, light in the mouth, and guaranteed to smoke great from the very first puff, then you will love the whole line of Erik Nording Pipes.  Each piece is hand-carved with either top-quality Corsican, Algerian, and Grecian briarwood.  No two Erik Nording tobacco pipes are identical, making them very personal, visually appealing, and highly collectable.


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