Category Archives: Pipes

Consummate Craftsmen

"Fatto a mano" is Italian for "made by hand", properly translated "handmade". The Radice family is all about hands. They have firm handshakes and look you in the eye when talking with you. They make long-term business deals with nothing but handshakes. They use their hands to emphasize points of discussion, setting down whatever is in hand or letting go of the steering wheel of a fast-moving car if need be. And of course they craft world-famous pipes by hand. Continue reading

Born Again Corncob Snob

A Born Again Corncob Snob

The yolk-yellow hue of a Los Angeles morning sun eked over the horizon and crept through the thatches of my mountain lion hut. I yawned, stretched, and pulled another hearty swig of Maker’s Mark from my nearly spent bottle, welcoming with youthful vigor this new day. Ronald and I had been playing Texas Poker all night and I was down a solid week’s salary at Dairy Freeze where I’d been working the past three months to make ends meet. Ronald dropped his cards. “Young Mudd, I’m not your father, but I think it’s time you answered another question at” Continue reading

In His Blood

If briar dust can flow through a person’s veins, it flows through Roberto Ascorti’s. His father was a famous carver, his brother worked by Roberto’s side making pipes, his wife Silvana has been involved in the pipe business since she was 16 or 17 and now runs the Ascorti pipe and cigar shop. Roberto has hand crafted innumerable pipes, breathing in the dust that inevitably escapes the dust collection systems, for many years. Continue reading