Thunder Extra Strong Portion vs. Thunder Extra Strong Chew Bags
You may believe that having attained an E grade in Advanced Level Law and having been in court once would give me a unique understanding of the intricate laws and regulations regarding snus distribution. Alas, it is not so. The whys and wherefores of varying snus availability in certain countries is a baffling mystery which, to be honest, I haven't researched at all. If I can get snus, I'm happy. If not, then I'll moan and complain and shake my fist and sulk.
Chew bags sound more like something you would give a horse to munch on, but they may be small saviours when finding yourself in those areas unenlightened to the joys of snus as they fall into a legislative grey area. Chew bags are apparently not snus. At the same time, they closely resemble snus and are produced by snus manufacturers. So many questions, so many contradictions. In the interests of aiding the debate, satisfying my own curiosity and, perhaps, guiding human civilisation to a new level of knowledge and ultimate peace, I tested Thunder Extra Strong Chew Bags against their ancestral form, Thunder Extra Strong Portion Snus.
I'll spring elegantly over my thoughts on the packaging as I have written before on my opinions of Thunder cans. Suffice to say, the chew bags are presented in the same way as other Thunder products. The chew bags themselves, however, do look and smell slightly different. Not as dark in colour or aroma as Extra Strong Portion; they have a khaki-ness to them and a nice little whiff of liqourice. The Extra Strong Portion are, as mentioned, darker and a bit greasier to the touch, with a very strong odour of something I can't quite place, but is definitely 100 percent snus in nature.
Extra Strong Portion hides nothing in it's approach. Dark, quite drippy and a strength which lasts until you physically are unable to contain or dispose of the juices anymore and are forced to submit. This is by no way a criticism, as I prefer a solid blast of snus over more delicate, slow burners for the most part, although I do find most Thunder products a bit too full, if you know what I mean?
The Chew Bags, as indicated by their lighter shade, are a touch gentler. Extra Strong Portion kicks in the door and grabs the arm chair, Chew Bags knock first, sit quietly for a while before livening up and getting going. Hit and taste-wise, the CB's gradually rise from a steady buzz to a bona fide extra strong level over a quarter of an hour. I must also mention that no chewing is required to activate the snus. Sorry, I meant chew bag. It is easy to forget that, in some bizarre and undefined way, Chew Bags are not snus.
In comparitive terms, I preferred the Chew Bag for it's more meandering way to the hit and a drier experience, more akin to a white portion. The flavour is a toned down version of the Extra Strong Portion, without any loss of strength of effect. In my attempt to find the flaw, the sign that something was lacking, which could explain why Chew Bags are not snus, I failed. In a blind taste test, with no prior knowledge, I'd bet my emergency frozen snus can that not one of you could tell the difference between a chew bag and a snus portion.
Whatever the difference is, be it ingredient, terminology or other is unimportant. I can only offer my deep gratitude to whichever creative soul first thought to produce chew bags. The name is a little odd, but behind the smokescreen is for all intents and purposes, snus for those who know snus.