It's no secret that when I think something is really good I heap glowing praise on it and do everything I can to spread the word. Just read these reviews. I don't pull any punches when something isn't very good, but I suppose I can come across a bit fanboyish when I really like something. That's ok, enthusiasm gets peoples attention.
I ordered two 12ml bottles of Vaperite juice on the recommendation of someone at ECF, and Todd threw in two additional samples, giving me four of his tobacco flavors to acquaint myself with. I was immediately floored by how good these juices were. They were unlike any other juice I had tried. The tobacco had a very natural quality to it. Todd makes his own tobacco extracts instead of just squirting in someone else's flavoring, and it shows. Oh boy does it show. These became instant favorites at Castle Vapenstein.
I've already reviewed Todd's House Extracted Natural Tobacco. Today we're taking a look at his APV Tobacco Organic. It has a very similar tobacco base to the former, but then it takes a turn toward sublime.
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The day I first put a battery into my Copper and loaded a cartridge, Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein took one blast and said "Get me one.". I was happy to oblige. Giving up cigarettes after smoking her entire adult life was a stretch, and she did stipulate that she wanted her device to look like a cigarette. Happy with how 510 hardware worked, I decided on a standard 510 kit for her. I also knew that she wouldn't have the patience to fiddle around with gear, so I knew I had to figure out how to make this transition as easy as possible for her.
I looked at the Joye PCC, but was immediately put off by how little it held. One battery? Deal breaker. That, and people seemed to think the completely square metal box was hard on purse interiors. There was only one other option evident, and that was the 510 Smart PCC Kit from Mad Vapes.
The 510 Smart PCC Kit holds two batteries, which is a must. 510 batteries drain if you look at them. One just isn't enough. Only one of the battery slots charges, so you keep a charged battery in one slot and charge your other battery in the other slot. The PCC has six other slots for cartridges, cartomizers and/or atomizers. We pack hers with an atty and five cartridges. It's the size of a pack of cigarettes, and holds just about everything you need. If you carry a small bottle of juice with you, you're pretty much set for a day out.
Vapor Station makes some of the best juice in the business. That isn't a paid endorsement, it's my honest opinion. I haven't ordered a bottle from them yet that I haven't liked. If you ask me who my favorite vendor is, Vapor Station is one of probably three names that immediately pops into my head.
The first order I placed with Vapor Station was just a two bottle test order, but the 15ml bottle of VS Frisco disappeared faster than any juice we've had yet here at Castle Vapenstein. I liked both of the juices I got in that first order quite a bit, and the second order that followed closely on the heels of the first produced the same results. Three bottles that were really, really good, and induced me to place a third order, which I am sitting on the cart right now trying to decide if I want to add anything else to.
I always order a juice I haven't tried in 10-15ml, then if it passes the rigorous testing here in The Lab we go back for a bigger bottle. One of the things that contributes to how quickly I fall in love with Vapor Station juices is that as a side effect of being produced in India (Eric developed the recipes in cooperation with an Indian flavor producer) these juices show up ready to vape right out of the mail. You don't need to sit on Vapor Station juices til the flavors mature. They're already there. That is really nice, because a lot of the juice we like needs at least two weeks in The Juice Cellar to mature before it's ready to vape. No waiting with Vapor Station juices.
I can only think of a couple of vendors who don't offer an interpretation of RY4. RY4 is probably the single most ordered, vaped and talked about juice flavor there is. Even my first two orders, which were missteps taken with budget juice vendors, had one bottle of RY4, and it saved me until I had discovered quality juice. I like RY4. It isn't my all day vape, but it is part of my daily rotation. I am going to be more critical of an RY4 than I would be some flavors because of that.
First of all, Backwoods Brew is Don in rural New York. He is just one of the nicest guys you'll come across in the vaping scene. He is going the extra mile coming up with his own flavors and using ingredients from different sources to provide his users with something unique, and it comes through in his flavors. Whether or not you find Backwoods Brew to be one of your favorite vendors, I think just about everyone will pick up on this quality and dedication toward crafting an artisanal product.
Don's juice needs to mature before it reaches it full flavor potential. That is true of a lot of juice out there, but doubly so for Backwoods Brew. Don mixes all his juice as ordered. I found the RY4 vapeable out of the mail, but the other juices I have ordered from him have required time in The Juice Cellar to shine. The RY4 I am vaping right now is two weeks old, and it is slightly improved from day one. It's 18mg, and Don puts it right on the bottle that it is made from PG, VG, nicotine and flavorings. No mystery ingredients.
The very first order of juice I ever placed was with Vapor Renu. US made, $7/30ml, what a deal, right? Those of you thinking I'm some kind of shill from my previous, glowing reviews will want to keep reading. I am about to prove that what you read here on Vapenstein is my honest opinion, nothing more, nothing less. I am a vaper just like you. I get excited about good product, but I am not going to gloss it over when a product comes up short.
I ordered Vapor Renu 555 and Vapor Renu Black Licorice, both 80PG/20VG, 16mg, medium TH. I got a double shot of flavor on the Black Licorice.
This stuff is just not very good. Oddly they don't even produce vapor uniformly. The 555 produces an average amount, but the Black Licorice is very anemic in the vapor production department.
The Vapor Renu 555 has zero tobacco flavor to my palate, accompanied by zero throat hit. I am forcing myself to vape some right now so the impressions are fresh in my mind. I have been trying to get Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein to use this stuff, but it hasn't worked yet. This 555 is perfume-y and has a real wrong chocolate note to it. Not even like real chocolate, artificial chocolate. As in discount store discount Easter candy chocolate. Here's another gripe I have with this 555. It burns weird. You can't drip it like normal juice. It's like whatever real ingredients they used burn off in a vape or two, leaving behind a watery mess in your atty that has to be blown out and dry burned to make your atomizer useful again.
I like tobacco flavors. The food stuff, well it's more of a novelty for me. Don't get me wrong, I like a little something sweet to vape after dinner or late at night, but mostly I crave a rich, satisfying tobacco.
Someone at ECF tipped me off to Vaperite and recommended I place an order with them based on my preferences. I looked at Todd's selection of tobacco juices and was intrigued by the variety. I placed a two bottle test order that showed up over the weekend. Todd was kind enough to throw in samples of two more tobacco juices that I wanted to try but didn't order. I love that, you open the box and it is like Christmas. FSUSA always includes a 3ml sample with their orders too. Vendors who do this are smart, because for a minuscule loss they probably generate more orders from people getting something and really liking it.
The focus of this Juice Review is Vaperite House Extracted Natural Tobacco. Todd makes his own tobacco extracts, and it shows. These four juices he sent me all have that special something that very few vendors manage to capture.
Okay, the House Extracted Natural Tobacco I am vaping right now comes in a child-proof container almost identical to Freedom Smoke USA's with the exception that it is 12ml instead of 10ml. I am dripping it at 18mg on my 3.7v Copper 510. Those of you reading who haven't bought yourselves a drip tip, please do so. Cartridges and cartomizers have their place, but once I got a drip tip I never looked back. I prefer a Delrin shorty. It's cheap, it lets the juice go where it needs to, and it really lets your flavors shine the way a cart or cartomizer never could.
Vapor Station offers some very high quality juice. They may not get the word of mouth some other vendors enjoy, so hopefully I can help in rectifying that oversight.
I ordered a two bottle test order first time around with Vapor Station, Djarum Mild and Frisco. Frisco was very highly recommended on ECF, and Djarum, well, there just aren't that many kretek juices out there. Smell is one of the greatest memory triggers, and kreteks have one of the world's most unique smells. The smell of kretek brings memories of being 20-something and having a great time club hopping. I suppose there are two reasons for the lack of kretek juices; one, clove oil is hard on your lungs, and probably attys too. Two, have you ever looked at what goes into a kretek? This is straight from Djarum's website: maple, chocolate, licorice, plum, coffee, strawberry, pineapple, vanilla, orange.....those are just some of the ingredients used.
So anyway I got my Vapor Station order and was quite impressed. The juice was really good, and I liked the glass 15ml dropper bottles. Plus, at $7/15ml, Vapor Station juice represents a great value. Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein and I went through the VS Frisco faster than any juice we had purchased, so I ordered a 30ml bottle of it and a couple other flavors. One of them was VS Tampa, Vapor Station's straight tobacco blend.
Right out of the gate VS Tampa gave a good first impression. At 16mg it produces a nice throat hit and produces more than adequate vapor. Not sure what the PG/VG mix is, but it is the right balance.
The first two juice orders I ever placed were from places that sold 30ml bottles for less than $8. Actually now I know that they were both from the same source, the one place was just relabeling the other place's juice. So my first 120ml was this barely vape-able, tepid juice that had zero throat hit and little vapor. If that would have been all I had I think I would still be smoking Pall Malls.
Around the same time Freedom Smoke USA was offering a coupon code for first time customers that gave them 30% off their first order. I squandered that order on some accessories, no juice at all. I know, I know. Lucky for me there was a 3ml sample of Wyatt Earp in the package.
I vaped that little 3ml bottle like my life depended on it. My initial impression was that it had a little bit of a strong cigar-y note on exhale, and while I found it enjoyable it was something I could only take in small doses. So I'm alternating between this crappy nicotine water from Vendor X and Wyatt Earp. I am increasingly reaching for the Wyatt Earp. At first I think this was because it was 24mg and my body wanted the nicotine. By the end of three days of this however, I am really, really liking this stuff.
Time has passed, and I have discovered other quality vendors and I have a few new favorites. Wyatt Earp is no longer one of my favorites, but it's the juice that got me off analogs and I will always have a soft spot for it.
The Copper. My very first PV. When I started looking into getting some sort of electronic cigarette, it didn't take me long to stumble across the wonderful world of mods. Besides looking way cooler, they offer tangible, real world benefits over the e-cigs that look like cigarettes.
I didn't even know if vaping was for me yet, so I didn't want to get in too deep right off the bat. After a while though, I started to realize that for not a lot more money than some Chinese-made piece of gear I could get a quality piece of hardware. If I liked vaping I would be replacing that Chinese gear anyway, so I eventually decided on The Copper. I chose the 510 version.
The Copper is AtmosUSA's signature mod. He offers it in the original, straight from under the kitchen sink configuration complete with hex nuts on both ends, or a sleeker rounded version. I opted for the rounded version of The Copper.
The Copper is a very utilitarian piece of gear. There is something very understated and toolbox about it. It is just about the perfect size for my hand, and I have grown accustomed to its form and function, much like an old pair of work boots or an old truck. The Copper doesn't utilize a side or bottom mounted button. Instead, the atomizer screws into a steel post that protrudes from the brass housing of the unit, and pushing the whole assembly down is what engages the atomizer and battery.
I started smoking when I was 12 years old. By 40 the morning hack is so bad I can easily throw my back out and wind up at the chiropractor. No kidding. Every cold turns into a near pneumonia upper respiratory infection that takes a week to get over. Not to mention that once you have kids you start to realize that being around to watch them grow up is pretty high on your list of priorities.
I quit before, for 5 years. Problem is, quitting is kind of a long road. You quit, your skin crawls for a while, you get fat, eventually the cravings go away and you get over the hand to mouth addiction, and you resume a normal, tobacco-free life. For me that process is somewhere between 18-24 months. I quit last January, because I had made a promise to my son, who was three when I made the promise, that I would. I did. I made it 8 months. I was over the physical addition, but not the other stuff. Let me tell you, I am pretty laid back. I work in Corrections, you pretty much have to be. It's a negative environment and more often than not your job is to get difficult people to do what you need them to do. It's one of those professions where almost everyone uses tobacco. Sunflower seeds weren't an adequate replacement, not to mention that that much sodium makes your blood pressure skyrocket. Chewing gum helped some, but you chomp on gum all day long and A) it's somewhat unattractive, and B) your jaw hurts at the end of the day.
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