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A burley dominated flake containing tobaccos from 3 continents. Besides burley, this flake also contains ripe Virginia tobaccos and a small portion of dark fired Kentucky.

BrandMac Baren
Blended ByPer Jensen
Manufactured ByMac Baren
Blend TypeBurley Based
ContentsBurley, Kentucky, Virginia
FlavoringNone
CutFlake
Packaging50 grams tin, 100 grams tin, one pound box
CountryDK
ProductionCurrently available
Product Image
Strength
Mild to Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Mild to Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 6 Users

3.6
14 reviews
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2189)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

The nutty, earthy, woody, lightly molasses sweet, mildly chocolatey burleys take the lead over the other components. They also sport a touch of spice and light dryness. The tangy, ripe dark fruity, earthy, very lightly grassy dark Virginias play an important condimental role. There’s also a strand or two of red Virginia in the mix. The lightly spicy, woody, earthy, mildly sweet dark fired Kentucky is a background player. The strength is just past the center of mild to medium, while the taste level falls just short of medium. The nic-hit is a step or so past the mild threshold. No chance of bite or harshness, and has no rough edges. The flakes are a little moist, but I saw no need to dry them. They easily break apart to suit your preference. Burns a little slow, cool and clean with a fairly rich, mostly consistent, woody sweet predominate burley flavor from start to finish. I recommend a wide bowl to enhance the range of nuances this blend has to offer. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and does require some relights. The after taste is very pleasant, and lightly lingering. Can easily be an all day smoke.

-JimInks

30 people found this review helpful.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (229)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

After I saw JimInks post on pipesmagazine.com that Iwan Ries had this for sale I immediately purchased 2 tins. I'm primarily a Burley fan with Burley Slice (BS) and Aged Burley Flake (ABF) favorites, and with their respective availability these days in question, the Mac Baren offering was a must for me.

I've always been a fan of the late Mac's Burley London Blend (one of the first tobaccos I ever smoked over 40 years ago) and Golden Extra in that order; always hoping for a Mac Burley done as a flake. Opening the tin reveled two neat rows of flakes ala Mac Baren that were medium brown in appearance. The tin note had a faint cocoa smell with a bit of sour and a very mild fruitiness which I assumed was from the Virginia in the blend. I've always found the moisture content of Mac Barens ready for smoking. Interestingly this Mac flake was sturdier than their Navy Flake and Mixture flake; not crumbling apart as easily. Loading and lighting were easy as expected. The smoking experience was superb. I didn't find any similarity to Burley London or Golden Extra. There was always a faint cocoa taste while smoking with a dryness and minimal sour I've come to experience with good Burley leaf. I feel the cocoa presence was a combination of the inherent quality of Burley and perhaps what the Burley was cured with; it wasn't a top dressing to me. I couldn't pick up any Virginia per se, but along with a subtle sweetness (probably from the Virginia) throughout the smoke and you have what this is all about. It has way less cocoa presence than ABF and didn't detect molasses as with BS. It smoked clean and dry to the heel with a minimal of relights along the way. The room note was that very comforting, pipey smell you get from a good Burley. All excellent across the board. Not as strong as ABF or BS and no appreciable nicotene effect with fast puffing. There was never any bite whatsoever and this never smoked hot - at all. If ABF and BS vanished from the USA market, this would satisfy completely as my go to Burley flake. A GREAT offering from Mac Baren and my favorite flake of theirs to date, one I will be smoking daily. Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: Stanwell sandblast half bent Dublin

Age When Smoked: Fresh from tin

Purchased From: Iwan Ries

Similar Blends: Amphora Original (brown), Aged Burley Flake.

22 people found this review helpful.

Mikefu Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mikefu (15)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Nice, wide easy to pack flakes with the typical MacB attention to uniformity and aesthetics. The pound box is really a thing of beauty, with its line of beautiful dappled brown flakes standing side by side like soldiers awaiting orders. I prefer the fold and stuff method over rubbing them out, and in doing so am rewarded with an easy to light and easy to maintain flake smoking experience. They start out just a touch too moist, and I dry them for 30-45 minutes before folding. At initial light, I am greeted by a nice nutty burley flavor with a touch of sweetness and a hint of vanilla flavor. Not from a topping, I don’t think, but just from a well executed treatment of quality leaf. The vanilla fades into chocolate notes after the first third, and the spice from the dark fired begins to kick in, giving occasional hints of Mexican chocolate on the retrohale. The molasses notes remain light and subdued throughout, and while present, are definitely akin more to light molasses than blackstrap. As the bowl progresses, it develops a minerality, akin to a dry old word white wine, almost a flintyness. The grassiness of the Virginia comes and goes for the latter two thirds of the bowl, rounding out the increasing spice of the dark fired. Not a terribly complex smoke, but one that doesn’t wear out its welcome with monotony either. Burns well, I only need a couple relights. Burns cool and slow, and you have to really try to get any bite out of it. Has a little moisture left over, but nothing serious. Overall a very good flake that I highly recommend.

Pipe Used: Various Briars

Age When Smoked: Fresh

12 people found this review helpful.

DrumsAndBeer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrumsAndBeer (208)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is quite a departure from what I have come to expect from Mac Baren with their burley based HH series blends. When smoking this, don’t expect the bigger presence of Old Dark Fired or the spiciness & enormous low notes of Bold Kentucky. This one is designed to be a mild, yet flavorful all day kind of smoke, and in HH Burley Flake I think Mac Baren has created exactly that.

The tin note is unassuming; it’s dry and earthy in a vegetal kind of way, with a hair of sweetness coming from the Virginias along with a faint trace of hard wood smoke from the dark fired Kentucky. The flakes are evenly cut and perfectly pressed. The moisture content is spot on and any method of preparation could be applied here. Whether rubbed out, cubed or folded and stuffed, I found that Burley Flake burns easily and smokes slow and cool regardless.

When lit there’s a subtle sweetness that comes forth which quickly gives way to the woodsy, nutty, earthy mineral notes of the burleys. As the bowl progresses there are a few subtleties and the overall flavor develops into a balanced and moderately complex smoke that’s mild to medium in flavor and strength. The most unique aspect of HH Burley Flake is a light, yet pervasive cigar-like note that comes into focus at times, especially on the finish. I say “cigar-like” because it’s not a dead ringer for cigar, but rather something in the ballpark. I have never noticed this particular aroma or flavor attribute in either of the other HH burley blends, so I am going to assume that it’s coming from the Indonesian grown burley which adds a certain something that’s quite foreign to my senses. The uniqueness of this flavor alone makes HH Burley Flake an intriguing tobacco to smoke.

Overall this is an exceptionally smooth, high quality milder burley blend with a sweeter tone and absolutely no harshness or bitterness. It's an honest & unpretentious product. For now I am rating this as recommended. But I have a feeling that I might really grow to appreciate this flake even more down the road.

12 people found this review helpful.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (166)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I am surprised some rank this as mild. Per (the blender) on PM radio talk show cautiously said the Indonesian burley component alone is powerful. It is "tempered" with Malawi and Brazilian burley and DFK. It is perhaps milder than the ingredients themselves would suggest. It is strong enough to satisfy someone who likes OJK by C&D IMO, but just not as heavy.

A burley lovers blend for sure. Earthy yet with a slight dark fruit note from say the Virginia. A cigar mouth feel due to richness but no cigar leaf is involved.

Easy to rub out and burns easy no matter how packed. Not hot, wet or biting, but straight tobacco.

Not as "coco-ish" or as strong as ABF but stronger and not as Virginia forward as burley flake #5.

A fine, fine repeatable smoke. Smoked near full 3 1/2 oz. tin, save a couple of flakes yet.

Pipe Used: Tim West TPC '18, Mark tinsky bulldog

Age When Smoked: new tin

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

Similar Blends: Solani ABF, C&D Burley Flake #5.

9 people found this review helpful.

GabrielCRT Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
GabrielCRT (95)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I'll be smoking a lot of this flake this summer. The "HH" series is full of home-runs and this is a great addition. Lots of hay and earth in the tin note. The Burley is very smooth with chocolate, molasses, and an elusive cinnamon note. The grassy Virginia helps provide balance. I find the Kentucky leaf most evident at the end of the bowl. It's mildly woody with a little bit of spice. Faint cigar notes pop up occasionally. This is definitely designed to be a mild-medium all-day smoke and it delivers bowl after bowl.

8 people found this review helpful.

arpie55 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
arpie55 (69)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

First impressions, first bowl. The flakes are perfect moisture level and rub out perfectly and easily for loading, the tin aroma is pleasant and in no way overpowering. Lights easily and delivers a nice consistent smoke that burns easily. By far one of the best Burley blends I have smoked, not sweet, but the Burley chocolate note shines. No worry of tongue bite. I would call it a must try.

Update- After a half dozen bowls or so the only thing that I have to add is that this blend has a fair nic hit. Some have suggested that it might a good all day smoke, I find it to be more of an after dinner smoke, not well suited to early morning on an empty stomach. I am not one that tries to review a blend with lots of nuiances but with this blend there are not a lot anyway, it is a consitent flavor throughout the bowl, that being said, it is overall an excellent blend and, as before, I stll say that is a must try for most any pipe smoker that like to have varity in their rotation.

Pipe Used: Savinelli

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

7 people found this review helpful.

J. Ward Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
J. Ward (42)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Mac Baren’s HH Burley Flake exceeded and shattered my expectations. The smoke is delicious and phenomenal. The flakes break apart easily and really require no dry time, and I smoked 3 bowls in succession after cracking the tin. There’s a light hay and honey sweetness that accompanies the nutty, cocoa, and earthy notes of the Burley. The dark Fired lingers in the background contributing the slightest bit of wood to the blend. By the last 3rd of the bowl there’s more earth, nuttiness, and cocoa than hay and honey, but it remains slightly sweet. I’m inclined to believe there’s a very lightly and expertly applied topping of honey to this blend, but if there’s not, I’m blown away! This blend slightly resembles Mac Baren Golden Extra in the first 3rd (but better!) and Solani Aged Burley Flake in the last 3rd (but better!), yet this blend is a uniquely delicious, top notch Burley Flake. Strength and flavor just a hair below medium. Easily 4 stars.

Pipe Used: Briar

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

Similar Blends: Mac Baren Golden Extra , Solani Aged Burley Flake.

6 people found this review helpful.

oldermanpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
oldermanpipe (17)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The late, long-time Master Distiller of Heaven Hill Distilleries, Parker Beam, used to scratch his head when reviewers of his bourbons would comment that they tasted apricots and leather in his whiskey. "I don't put any apricots and leather in there. I put corn and water into an oak barrel; and that's all I taste: corn and oak." Well...rye (or wheat) and malted barley go in there also...and a closely guarded yeast...but definitely no apricots or leather! Parker, an old customer of mine, had as sophisticated a palate as there ever was, but his only criterion was: Is this good bourbon or bad bourbon?

Burley, like bourbon, was originally a Kentucky product. And, in fact, the two still compliment each other marvelously.

HH Burley Flake is a fabulous smoke. In the tin, it has the faint cocoa aroma that all good Burley has, although it comes through in the smoke only incidentally. There is no discernable top dressing, nor is there anything to caress the senses besides the exelent Burley, along with a bit of Virginia and Dark Fired Kentucky. Mostly, the taste is earthy and "summery," as in summer in the Ohio River Valley, where Burley first was grown.

Having been a longtime Burley lover, there is nothing to fault here. The smoke is cool and bite-free; whether folded or rubbed out. To me, there have always been two types of Burley pipe tobaccos: Edgeworth and Granger. This is more on the Granger end of the spectrum, a darker and stronger tobacco. This is not as brutally strong as Solani ABF, but it is fuller and tastier than Wessex Burley Slices. Though in character more like the Wessex. This is by no means a mild, nor medium smoke. But for ANY Burley lover...a must-try.

UPDATE

I won't say this is the best Burley smoke I have ever had; that still goes to the Larus and Brother Edgeworth Slices of 1972. But I was 19 then, and the memory of a 65-yr-old man is bound to be a bit suspect. Though the first couple of puffs of Sutliff's Edgeworth Match bring back just what was so great about it. After that...eh, not so much.

HH Burley Flake grabs the basis of that late, lauded smoke, and provides a wonderful Burley satisfaction for the whole bowlful. There really isn't a wrong note to be had. I might prefer a bit more cocoa, but that is by no means a criticism. This stuff is fine...just fine.

The original Edgeworth is gone. Just like the Original Balkan Sobranie, and the original Brush Creek. Or the original me. But for what's left of me...this will do.

6 people found this review helpful.

WillBrown Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WillBrown (114)
★★★☆
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong

This is every bit as good and flavorful as the Solani Burley Flake. I really loved sipping this one! When a burley is good, it's nutty. This blend is both nutty and relatively smooth. It lit well, after a single char, down to the bottom. I folded it into my bowl rather than breaking it up. I feel flakes should almost always be smoked folded and not broken up—flakes are flakes for a reason. This was another Chicago Pipe Show sampling (I got five full flakes), and, I suppose it was worth the price, even in spite of some of the other blends that were part of the sampler. My only downside is the strength, but, hey, what do you expect? It's a burley!

Keep on Pipin'!

Purchased From: Chicago Pipe Show

5 people found this review helpful.

Ducksbreath Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ducksbreath (120)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is something like the current University flake but without the plum topping and toned down perhaps a step further.

I can see a number of people liking this natural, creamy, slightly spicy flake, but for me it is not robust or interesting enough.

I loved the original University flake of yore, and I occasionally smoke the current version. This is even more refined, though, and very nice on the palate in body, just not enough in flavor for me personally. Presentation and quality are impeccable, as to be expected.

Out of all these HH flakes I find ODF to be the sweet spot for me. YMMV.

Similar Blends: University flake without the plum topping..

5 people found this review helpful.

DenizBeck Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DenizBeck (286)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

When Mac Barenn announced a Burley Flake I got quite excited.. when I read that it was part of the HH-line my anticipation arose to the max..! And it did deliver what it promised!

The tin note is very nice and natural. Vegetative, natural tobacco aroma, with a slightly sour-fruity undertone to it. Rich earthiness, some tart nuttiness, even hints of dough and bread can be found in the tin note. Only slight notes of cocoa and (dark) chocolate, you can tell by the smell that this blend wasn't overly cased, nor flavored! Classic Mac Baren presentation.. golden wrapper, uniformly stacked and shaped flakes.. very classsy, as usual, I appreciate a blend coming in a appealing wrapper - doubles the pleasure, doesn't it!? ;-)

In the smoke the Burley offers full-bodied and warm, natural tobacco goodness. Rich earthy foundation on which delicate notes of (tart) nuts, wood, cocoa, dark chocolate and even some dough-y notes linger and melt into a perfectly harmonized smoke. The Virginias straigthens the rudder of the Burleys feral nature, adding a very mild sweetness, and I also attribute the slight dark fruit note to the Virginias. The dark fired leaf is only a whisper in the background, but enough to add a pleasant spice and a hint of smokiness to the blend.

Full-bodied and rich in aroma, yet very All-Day-suitable in terms of strength! It's not too far fetched to compare this to Solani's Aged Burley Flake, yet the HH Burley Flake is much more natural. Whilst the ABF is obviously cased (I'd even say flavored!) with a cocao and milk-chocolaty aroma, the HH-Burley flakes only has a hint of a dark coaoa and chocolate casing. I chose flavoring "extremely mild", but it's not flavoring, but a casing I suppose! If you like ABF, but prefer more natural smokes, you'll love HH Burley Flake.

Thanks Per, as a Burley-Bloke this blend is a wonderful enrichment for my rotation and that of any Burley-Aficionado!

4 people found this review helpful.

WolfmanSam Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WolfmanSam (31)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Upon opening the square tin, I’m greeted with three rows of perfectly aligned dark brown solid flakes. They feel slightly damp, but do not need to dry. I usually fold and stuff, but rubbing out works well if that’s your preference.

When smoking, I taste nuts, some earthiness, and chocolate, at times. It’s spicy but has some sweetness (molasses?) to it. It’s never harsh, even if I take quick puffs. It smokes well in various briars and cobs. It’s a slow burning tobacco, so set aside at least an hour to smoke.

This is an exceptional all-day burley. If you love burley, this will make you happy.

4 people found this review helpful.

Dr.James Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.James (29)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Dried out a bit and packed in the the traditional flake folding method, these hearty flakes are easy to work with. Upon first light and throughout the first quarter bowl the sharpness of the burley is offset by the sweetness of the Virginias in the blend in a somewhat off-color sort of way highlighting a slightly perfumed and musky steamed fruit nuance. As the bowl progresses more of the grassy aspects of the Virginia harmonize with the nutty barnyard qualities of the burly and earthy cocoa nuance is brought to the foreground after which the flavors remain relatively consistent as the tobacco burns to a off-white ash leaving a little moisture behind. Leaves a somewhat pleasant aftertaste and has a decent room note. Strength is medium, a nice change of pace for the burley lover.

Age When Smoked: Fresh

4 people found this review helpful.