The guys at Three Dukes are three brothers who clearly know how to have a good laugh, take a joke at their own expense, but have enough respect for one another to run a business together. They also have a lot of respect for consumers. In their eyes the biggest problem with e juice (as opposed to the old days, when it was all unique) is its lack of originality and quality. They want customers to taste sophistication and quality in their products and be able to tell the difference.
All products are bottled in cobalt blue glass starting at 15 ml for $13.95. At nearly $1 per/ml, the quality had better be high enough to inspire sonnets. If they had to pay some kind of fee to print an image from an 18th Century edition of Punch Magazine on their website, it is a quant touch but not worth another $1.95 for every 15 ml when $12 was already pushing it. The Aristocrat starts at $21.95.
Here are the flavors you meet on the Three Dukes Vapor website: The Gypsy, A Study in Scarlet, The Duke, Sir William, Fire and Brimstone, The Countess, The Aristocrat, and The Duchess. That makes eight, two of which are sold exclusively through a single vape store each. All six others can be purchased online. The nicotine range is 0 to 16mg.
A Study in E Juice
Study in Scarlet tastes like fresh berries and sweet mint; light and refreshing. The cover shows Sherlock Holmes from whose tale by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle the title comes. The Gypsy blends floral, herbal, and fruity notes. The Duke is their flagship flavor combining toasted and nutty tobacco with black currant to create a pipe-like tobacco.
That’s the flagship, but Sir William is their first flavor. Notice the creamy, citrus, spicy elements which are not as common or as sticky-tasting as an orange creamsicle vape, yet with a similar density.
Fire and Brimstone should call to mind an old-fashioned church preacher promising damnation to every unbelieving soul (or every soul unwilling to shed the weight from his pocket book). It’s designed to warm with natural cinnamon.
Try The Countess, a feminine beauty of melon and floral flavors and aromas sold only at a brick-and-mortar store. The Aristocrat is also only available in-store (a different one) and features the thickness of dessert custard which the Britons so love.
Choose The Duchess and experience similar notes without tobacco, replacing this with Aristocratic sweet custard.
I love this part: the paring notes. At Three Dukes, it is not enough to imagine particular characteristics of each vape juice. One must also be prepared to drink a complementary hot or cold beverage so that each can bring out the best in the other. For instance, with the Duke you should drink stout beer (such as Murphy’s or Guinness), bold coffee, or strong tea (in their words). Study in Scarlet pairs best with red tea or fruit lambic ale. Choose green tea, tequila, or gin as a partner for The Gypsy.
The brothers flesh out their sophisticated image and ideals with unusual taste notes, this idea of pairing e liquid with drinks, and references to a deep-set hierarchical culture. That these guys are American should not undermine the illusion of their belonging to that culture or suitability for the job one bit.