Don Carlos

The eccentric, weird image is its main characteristic: Bruto Sordini, pipemaker of Don Carlos, has a long history in the pipe world. He started when he was 23, creating his first pipe in Cagli, where he still lives with his wife, Rosaria.

He had few years attending some workshops in the Pesaro area when he decided to establish the famous "Ser Jacopo dalla Gemma", together with Giancarlo Guidi. Cooperation and cohabitation with Mr. Guidi have been very troublesome since the beginning: that is the reason why Bruto decided to leave his beloved Ser Jacopo to "roam" by other workshops in Pesaro Area. He had the real fortune to end up in "Il Ceppo" workshop where Mr. Imperatori helped him to organize his new Don Carlos workshop in Cagli.

Just a few days ago I discovered that the election of the name "Don Carlos" has been haphazard; here are Bruto's words, who explain it: "...It was a Verdi's Opera, an italian production very well known all around the world. I did not know Verdi very well and I did no appreciate the very little of his music that I was used to listen but absent mindedly: I did not have any kind decency in using it.
If I could turn back time, this would be the only thing I would change in my life as pipemaker. Now that I begin to know Giuseppe Verdi better and I appreciate his music, I simply think that I confused the real art with my mud... I can only go ahead!".

Don Carlos way of working has changed a lot during years, since it was established back in 1989 with the name or "RES".
For a very large period, Bruto and his wife Rosaria, with some other workers, were used to make around 2000 pipes per year, mainly sent to United States.
Italian market has always been kept in low consideration, because of some bad experience. But I can really confirm that Bruto has been able to make himself very famous, organizing the successful "Festa della Pipa" in Cagli (8th Edition in 2008).
In the latest six years, after a very hapless incident, Bruto considerably reduced the number of pipes made to only 400 pieces per year. But this also mean a higher attention in each pipe realized, with special care for details and finishing.

My first visit to Don Carlos' workshop was back in 2004, when I attended "Festa della pipa" show in Cagli. Bruto and Rosaria have been right available in granting me their pipes. Neatpipes "La Bottega della Pipa", in its very first location, Via Panzini in Milan, presented, exclusive for the City of Milan, a large collection of Don Carlos pipes. Among others, Kronos shape, a big triumph for Bruto, because of its special and fascinating shape which is very very comfortable to keep in the mouth.

Grading system

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