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The famous mixture of cool and aromatic tobaccos, first specially blended for the third Earl of Craven in the 1860's. A very traditional Latakia mixture.

BrandCraven
Blend TypeUnknown
ContentsOriental/Turkish, Virginia, Latakia
FlavoringOther / Misc
CutRibbon
PackagingBulk
CountryUK
ProductionUnknown
Product Image
Strength
Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable
3.0
7 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
4
3 star:
0
2 star:
2
1 star:
1
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Connoisseur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Connoisseur (33)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

Craven Mixture is an interesting tobacco in that I normally do not like Latakia blends. I bought a couple of tins of this a while back not realising it had latakia and was pleasently surprised how rich, smooth and flavoursome it was. Medium to dark brown ribbon cut tobaccos with almost perfect moisture, which burned well from the first light. The flavour could be best described as coconutty but definitely not overpowering. I don't know how much Latakia is in this stuff, but it certainly didn't smell like traditional English blends. Definitely worth a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (513)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This review of the Craven Mixture is based on one half of a two tin set recently purchased from a consignment seller. This mixture comes from the pink lidded tin that I believe is from the 1990's. Based on other reviews, I think it's safe to assume that Craven Mixture had a pouch version, possibly in the final days of distribution. It is only a guess, but my opinion is it's unlikely that the pouch version was the exact same blend as the version found in the tin.

Upon opening CM, the appearance is that of a typical medium English blend. The Virginia's showed some sugar crystals on them. The moisture level was perfect and Craven produces clouds of very smooth smoke. I am sure that the Latakia has softened with age and in this case, it seems to have melded beautifully with the other component tobaccos. With the exception of the aged Virginia's, there isn't very much sweetness to the blend and I imagine that the Latakia was far more forward when it was originally tinned. If you are a fan of aged tobaccos and medium English blends, this little gem is worth the price. Highly Recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

shakenbake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
shakenbake (5)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I just got around to popping open one of my tins that I had bought in the 1990s, and already aged a few years. This was the original mixture with the pink label, not a replacement or imitation.

The tin aroma was heavenly, with the fruity, sweet scent of matured and aged Virginias that evokes memories of great tobaccos of the past. While smoking this bowl, I tasted the Latakia in this mixture; it was subdued by the 25+ years aging, but present nonetheless. After two to three re-lights, I was able to keep it going with occasional tamping for about a half an hour. The strength and flavour seemed to be constant throughout the smoke that lasted more than a half an hour in a size 3-4 bowl of my bent apple. The Virginias and other components really delivered a pleasant taste and smoke.

All in all, a great smoke, evoking memories of pipe pleasures from the past. Some of the later-day reincarnations of this noble mixture do not do it justice. Once my stash is exhausted, I will miss it. Its memories will encourage me to try to find a suitable alternative. Although I do not believe that I will find an exact replacement, those of us who have been fortunate enough to have smoked it have been fortunate to have experienced a most noble tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrDyson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrDyson (113)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Craven Mixture was a beautifully balanced, old-fashioned English mixture – supposedly the “Arcadia Mixture” celebrated by J.M. Barrie – that is no longer made. It began life in the 1860s and was last seen (by me, at least) in the 1980s. There are from time to time rumours of a comeback or a clone, but I've never seen any sign of one. I don't really know of anything that could be called an approximation, with the possible exception of Gawith's Squadron Leader. One can only wonder why so many of these marvellous old tobaccos disappeared yet there is still a market for cherry-flavoured blasphemies and tongue burners.

Ah, I miss CM still. “It's the smoothest and most satisfying tobacco a man could wish for”, says an old advertisement from 1928. In the same advertisement it is advertised as being available in tins and “cartridge form” – i.e. in the soft paper packets that were in use before those wretched plastic pouches came along. CM was to English mixtures what Balkan Sobranie was to Balkan mixtures: the absolute ne plus ultra. The “Craven Ready Rubbed” to which “Holy Smoke” is (I think) referring has nothing in common with Craven Mixture but the Craven name. Craven Ready Rubbed is in my opinion the worst kind of supermarket garbage. Craven Mixture would be highly recommended if you could still get it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Holy Smoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Holy Smoke (26)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild Pleasant

Well, this was bland.

I can't really remember anything of note whatsoever about this tobacco and frankly, I have no interest in buying another pouch to refresh my memory. It's just another one of those 'supermarket' blends that do any good pipe an injustice.

Anyone who thinks that this modern (pouch) version of craven is the arcadia mixture must be living in Neverland.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Inquisitor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Inquisitor (155)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

(From blind tobacco tasting review)

Appearance: A blend of roughly 50% brown tobaccos and 50% black tobaccos, cut short, no pressing evident. Not much contrast in the tin.

Tin Aroma: A strong Latakia smell hits you first (I would guess at least some Cyprian Latakia). Beneath this, aromas of barbecue sauce/Slim Jim, smoky campfire and wet dog become apparent. In short, an overall smokiness which covers any other aromas which might exist.

First Smoke: Again, I used a corn cob. The first sip of smoke came on as a fairly typical Oriental English, that is, dry, mouth-drying, Latakia-dominated flavor, a significant Oriental presence and very little Virginia toastiness and warmth. To be fair, I don?t love this type of blend, with the exception of Dunhill EMP. So, not surprisingly, I find the smoke to be somewhat boring, with little development or variation of flavors from beginning to end, and very little complexity. It isn?t terrible, but I ?m quite indifferent to it. I wouldn?t willingly choose to smoke it again.

Second Smoke: In a Hardcastle Deluxe that smokes English blends like a champ. Unfortunately, the smoke is virtually identical to the first smoke in the corn cob.

Third Smoke: In a ?London Pipe Shop? pipe, a thick briar no-name straight Dublin. Given the lackluster results of the first two smokes, I approached this tobak with some reluctance, on a dog walk at 11 pm, around 22F. I believed that this would be my last smoke ever of this blend. The pouch aroma was of a smoky barbecue sauce, not especially pleasant. The flavor, however, was very different from my first two attempts. Sweeter, better balance, more VA character. Then, did overnight DGT.

On re-light, immediately gave good flavor without bitterness (again, Vas). Not a heavy English, and the bass note is only an accent, with a ginger-like bitterness common (for me) with English blends. A honey-like mild sweetness plays throughout the top and mid-levels, with faint suggestions of licorice, barbecue sauce and fresh-cut wheat. The Virginias play a gradually increasing role, and the toasty/sweet trademark of high-quality leaf is most welcome. In the last ¼ of the bowl, the Vas drop out, leaving mostly a smoky flavor and a moderately ashy bitterness.

Summary: This blend is neither great nor terrible. I would say that it is ?good.? It certainly poses no threat to Renaissance, Raven?s Wing, Celebrated Sovereign, Mc #2020 and a few others. The pipe, or maybe tester? s hydration/dehydration, makes a big difference. If it smoked like it did the first two times, I would probably dump the bowl before the halfway mark. If it smoked like the third smoke, I would smoke the entire bowl without any regrets.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

An old favorite of mine from the 70's, long gone from the market in its original form. Simply a well balanced, tasty, and cool smoke that I could enjoy all day and into the evening without switching off. Always lit well, burned cool and dry. One of the few that said "hit me again" as I cleaned the pipe. DAMN, I miss it.

If this was the basis for the fictitious Arcadia Mixture, then I can understand what the fuss is about. McC's Arcadia didn't get it right, IMHO.

Nobody has rated this review yet.