Friday, 02 November 2012 17:23

Taste Test: New Thunder White Extra Strong Portion Snus Family

Written by Catherine DeMarsh-Hellwig
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Recently our favorite Snus Shop sent my husband Mick three cans of snus to try and to write about what he thought of them. Being that all three cans were mint and/or wintergreen which my husband is not really fond of, I thought it was only fair to try them myself as I tend to like such flavors.

Thunder White Cool Mint Extra Strong portion snus

As I tried the first flavor of Thunder White Cool Mint Extra Strong portion snus, I opened the can and was excited by the aroma of fresh mint. It has an almost like spearmint gum smell to it. The kind my father used when he was trying to give up smoking. There is something else that smells and tastes familiar but I can’t quite put my tongue on it at this time. For starters, I need to make clear, I am not used to full size portions or the extra strong flavors as I tend to use mini size portions, so adjusting it to my lip is a bit of a challenge.

Thunder White Extra Strong Portion Snus by V2 TobaccoAt first it has a bit of an extraordinarily minty hard bite to the flavor, but after a couple of minutes and a sip of my iced and incredibly lightly sweetened ice tea, it calmed right down. As I said I am not used to fuller size portions however I do find that it seems to melt into place in my upper lip on the left side.

It has been about 15 minutes and the nicotine is REALLY sinking in. Still as I run my tongue over it I can feel the minty tang in my mouth and the portion material is a bit slippery to my tongue. As I am not used to fuller flavors, I am not used to the slight buzz I am getting from it as I am going into the 20 minute mark.

I thought I wanted a cigarette before I started this experiment, but as I watch the presidential debate… strangely I don’t.

Thirty minute mark… I don’t find any bite at all. The flavor has a nice smoothness to it. I can still feel the nicotine. And unlike other fuller portions I have tried I don’t find I am ill or want to spit it out.

At 40 minutes I switched it from the left side to the right side and I get a cooling effect on that side of my mouth. When I switched it I use my front teeth to mush the snus around a little, and find a new and refreshing flavor in the snus.

Usually I find when I am trying a new snus I have to have a drink nearby to help me get through. I have noticed with this snus I don’t need so much to drink. Mick gave me an e-cigarette to help me curb my need to smoke. I find I don’t even care for it right now. Many times I find even with some of my mini’s I need something to do with my hands or I feel I need either another portion by this time but not with  V2 Thunder White Cool Mint.

Granted I tend to like the burn feeling, as well as the warmness of the smoke in my mouth that I feel in the back of my throat when I toke on my cigarettes. I think, like me, many people like that feeling and I think this is why many people who try to quit find it harder. I don’t care how hard they try, people are addicted to more than the nicotine and are possibly obsessed to either the burn or the “something to do with their hands,” as I am, and why many times, they fail when they try to quit smoking.

Well, it has been an hour and I find it still has a fair amount of the punch left in it. Normally, I find 30 to 40 minutes is a limit of the flavor of a good snus. I still have a little bit of a nicotine buzz, and I don’t find I want a cigarette. Of course I am not stressed at the moment and if I was I am sure this would be a good snus to have to curb my need for nicotine. I have always said I smoke to keep the homicide rate down and this snus might save someone else’s life.

As I have developed the nic-cups I find the snus juice in my mouth a bit annoying. I think I will call it a night and finish watching the debate.

Note: After taking out the portion something hit me… I still had the fresh minty flavor of the snus for another 5 to 10 minutes, and a lingering effect of the nicotine. It was not until the next morning that I realized what it was about it that was so familiar… it reminded me of the same tingle I have after I brush my teeth.

On to Thunder White Frosted Extra Strong portion snus

OK, so it has been 18 hours since I have wanted a cigarette.  It is not as if I am a heavy smoker to start with, as I am good with about 3 to 4 cigarettes per day.  Today I decided to try the new Thunder White Frosted Extra Strong portion snus, by V2.

At first the smell of the newly opened can has a lighter scent of fresh mint. Much like the White Cool Mint it almost has a toothpaste or spearmint gum smell to it. I actually really like that smell  and it sort of opens up the nasal passages.  My cat Louie is not as crazy about the smell. I took a portion out and rolled it around on my fingers to loosen up the tobacco in the package.

Just like Thunder White Cool Mint Extra Strong portions there is a bit of a minty bite to it. I slipped it into the right side of my lip and took a sip of my tea to help adjust it into place. It doesn't seem as strong at the one I tried last night. The label says it is an extra strong but it is not hitting like an extra strong.

Fifteen minutes into it I find it is only getting smoother. If it was not for the size of the portion, which I am having trouble adjusting in my lip, it would not be too bad and I wouldn't mind using it on a regular basis. As I stated before I am more used to the smaller mini portions.

It has been about 20 to 25 minutes and I switch it over to the left side of my lip it seems to have lost some of its zing. There is still a bit of flavor in it, but I don’t feel the nicotine as much. At this point it is like gum that has started to lose its flavor.

It has been about 40 to 45 minutes and I gave it up. It began to taste like stale gum. And who wants that?

For what is supposed to be a strong snus I find it a little weaker than the White Cool Mint, but only slightly stronger than my mini mint flavors. It is not one I would turn down but not one I feel would be one of my top five favorites. It seems to me to be more of an after dinner snus. A milder side of “strong” snus and more like a light dinner mint.

If one was on a diet I could see this as maybe a substitute for dessert. “No you go ahead and have that double death by chocolate seven layer cake… I will just have a portion of my Thunder White Frosted Extra Strong portion snus.”

As it seems I am having more trouble with the size then the flavor… I am wondering if they could make an extra long mini portion which I could slip into my lip and not have it down on my teeth. Mick and a friend of his, That Snus Guy, have brought to me a possible solution to this issue. After rolling the snus to loosen the tobacco, he folded the snus length wise and said to try that. So I have with my next portion.

[Editor's Note:  V2 does in fact make what Catherine is describing, although not in a white portion.  It is called Thunder Frosted Longer + Extra Strong portion snus.  Same Thunder Frosted recipe, same 17mg/g nicotine as the other Thunder extra strong offerings but in a longer, thinner portion pouch.  V2 actually makes 17 different kinds of Thunder Snus currently! They are always tinkering in the V2 Snus Lab; at least Patrick Vogel is.  His brother and co-founder Marc Vogel spends most of his time these days in his massive corner office fondling Bugatti car magazines.]

And finally, Thunder White Wintergreen Extra Strong portion snus

Thunder White Wintergreen Extra Strong portion snus is the last of the three sent and as I open the can to smell the contents I am reminded by Mick, “You never smell the snus before trying it. This is a newbie mistake.”

Well I am sorry but NOTHING goes in my mouth with smelling it first. This comes from a long line of training from my grandmother who was an herbalist and taught me to think of any new experience as a science experiment. How can I think of tobacco and or nicotine as any different?

[Editor's Note:  Despite the conventional wisdom being "don't smell the snus first", I agree with Catherine.  The longer you use snus, the more it becomes like rating a glass of wine.  You can't swirl your snus in a glass like wine to see if it has legs, but you can gently take in the aroma before tasting it.]

As I open the can and take a long whiff of the contents I am taken back to my childhood and a candy which my uncle and grandmother used to always have handy. I can’t remember the name of the candy but it is a strong Pepto-Bismol pink mint candy. As I close my eyes I am taken back to my childhood and remember the good times of squirrel hunting early in the morning with my uncle. Mick says V2 will not be happy about my referring to their snus to a “Pepto-Bismol candy,” but that's how it tastes to me.

OK, so I slip the folded portion into the right side of my lip. At first there is a slight burn much like the White Cool Mint but not as strong as the White Frosted. I took a sip of my tea to help adjust the fit of the folded snus in my lip. I think folding it does help with the fit. There is a slight tingle in my lips and nose, but I am not sure if that is because of the snus or the way I have the portion folded over.

Fifteen minutes into the snus I can feel the nicotine in my system and don’t feel a need for a cigarette. I can also taste less of the wintergreen flavor and a bit more of the tobacco behind it.

Going on the 30 minute mark I can taste a bit more of the tobacco and less of the wintergreen.

At the 40 to 45 minute mark of the portion, I can definitely taste more of the tobacco and the wintergreen is almost all but gone. The nicotine is still hitting but not quite as good as the White Cool Mint. It’s still more than the White Frosted at this point.

My conclusions on the new Thunder White portion snus offerings

I think of the three, my favorite is still the White Cool Mint but there is still a place in my refrigerator for the other two. I could see myself mixing the three for a night out.

Often before heading out for an evening, say, at a local high school football game, Mick will take a can of one snus, but often drops in a few other flavors for a slight variety. Variety is good and it would be nice if someone could come up with a can with separate compartments for those of us who like a little variety through the day. Just a thought.

I hope my insight into these three new Thunder Snus offerings was helpful to anyone who wants to try a little something different. Some people, like Mick, say they prefer the taste of the tobacco first and the flavor second. I think I prefer the taste of the flavor over the taste of the tobacco. It is a matter of personal preference.

As I try any new snus, I write what I think using my sense of smell, taste, and touch. I remind you this article is only my personal opinion and I hope my thoughts and words have inspired you to try these new Thunder White portions.

They say the best advertisement is word of mouth. I have to tend to agree. I got started on Swedish Snus because of my husband Mick and he got into it from someone else. Now I find myself wanting and willing to tell others of the joys of Swedish and Scandinavian Snus.  I also used to smoke a lot more before discovering snus from Scandinavia.  Thanks, V2!

CATHERINE DeMARSH-HELLWIG

A Proud American, Tobacco User, and Gun Owner
Reporting for SnusCENTRAL.org

Read 3664 times Last modified on Saturday, 09 November 2013 03:08

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