It is with much sadness that I report to you that one of the great men in our industry has passed on. Craig Tarler founded Cornell & Diehl in 1990, and over the last 20+ years he blended and manufactured some of the best tobacco in the business. From his humble beginnings in a garage-sized add-on to his home in Morgantown, NC, to the much larger and more sophisticated facility the company occupies today, C&D remains to this day the definition of a “Mom & Pop” operation. Up until today if you called them up to ask a question or order a couple tins, you might even get Craig himself on the phone, happy to talk your ear off about his passion. This level of care and commitment to producing quality tobacco is what made Craig able to set his company apart from his competition. Our community is smaller today, and less rich without Craig as part of it. His legacy and memory will live on through his work, as the blends he created will stand the test of time.
Craig’s passing darkens the world much more than just the loss of his contribution to our world of pipe tobacco. Craig was a jovial spirit; generously spreading good will to everyone he came in contact with. I especially enjoyed my visits with him, Patty and the C&D Clan in North Carolina. Craig was an excellent host, chef (he grilled very well) and conversationalist. He was a brilliant man having graduated from Penn. Their home is very inviting and the world is a sadder place without one of Madison Avenue’s finest who took a passion and made it into more than just a business. Craig will be sorely missed by everyone in the pipe smoking community, and we offer our sincerest condolences to his family and loved ones.