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The signing of the final draft of the Declaration of Independence was one of the United States defining moments. This momentous event is celebrated in this blend of the finest grades of Virginia tobaccos combined with Black Cavendish and a small portion of Latakia. Rich tasting, even burning, and light to medium bodied.

BrandDan Tobacco
Blended ByDan Tobacco
Manufactured ByDan Tobacco
Blend TypeAromatic
ContentsBlack Cavendish, Latakia, Virginia
FlavoringFruit / Citrus
Packaging50g Tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy
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Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 1 Users

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musicman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
musicman (88)
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Tolerable

I really like this blend. I can definitely see why some reviewers did not like it. I can taste that maybe the base tobaccos are not the highest of quality? Also the flavoring is different. I really like it but it is indescribable.

First let me start off by making a confession. I initially bought this blend based on the tin alone. Yup, it is true. There was a time when CAO/Dan had a line of blends with the coolest of tins. Being a history buff, blends like midnight ride, independence, and black Frigate really caught my eye. Unfortunately those cool tins are almost impossible to find now, but if you look you can get your hands on independence.

I kind of lump this in with the lakeland style blends. It is not a true lakeland flavoring but it has the same idea. A good tobacco flavor with a sort of floral note. I quite enjoy it. It burns really well and does not leave any sludge in the pipe.

There is one caveat with this blend. It will leave an interesting ghost behind so don't smoke it in your favorite Virginia vessel.

Highly recommended. Enjoy!

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1457)
Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a perfumed leaf that is well, sure different. The Virginia base is of rather suspect quality and the artificially perfumed flavoring is cheap rather than a heady, natural flavoring of the Highland Lakes variety that so many pipe hobbyists enjoy.

I do try hard to offer some merit to all blends that I review. I just could not come up with any major kudos here. It is a blend for some, and for that I'll tepidly say it may be a good smoke for someone other than me.

2 people found this review helpful.

NobbyR Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NobbyR (77)
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This broad ready rubbed mixture is what I like to call a hybrid tobacco. On the one hand it's an aromatic with a distict fruity flavoring, but on the other hand it contains a detectable amount of Latakia, which might make it interesting for those who prefer English tobaccos.

The Independence 50 g tin is bigger than usual, big enough for 100 g in other blends. The tin note reminds me of the way the malthouse of a whisky distillery smells. Kind of warm and sweet.

The pipe should not be filled too tightly, otherwise it'll burn too hot. This tobacco needs a little space. However, if you don't draw too eagerly, you'll have a cool and smooth smoke leaving just some powdery ash. The elusive fruity aroma (lemmon, banana, red berries?) mixes nicely with the natural sugary sweetness of the Virginias and the distinct tangy, peaty notes from the Latakia.

The room note is quite pleasant, because it's dominated by the top flavors. What others smell is an aromatic, but what you taste is Latakia.

Pipe Used: Bentley Wooden Treasure Half Bent

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From:

1 person found this review helpful.

Jake Jacobs Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jake Jacobs (2)
Very Mild Very Mild Mild Unnoticeable

Tin description: A blend of the finest grades of Virginias

Dan's not very long in the tooth about this blend, is he? This is one of four reintroductions of CAO blends and the first in the series I have tried. I have not tasted the the original so I cannot offer any comparison.

Blend presents in light tans in a mostly rubbed out flake with a few slightly chunkier pieces intermixed. My tin staged for 3 months and the moisture level upon opening was surprisingly perfect on the dry side. Surprising because of the aroma, I expected a much heavier moisture level. The scent is captivating aromatic. I am not a fan of American style aromatic blends; but I like this scent a lot. It is a mixture of dried black cherries, cranberries, pomegranates, and anise. As odd as that combination sounds, it's most enjoyable to sniff. Each scent is present and distinct without a melding or competing, I find that very interesting.

The moisture level from the tin being a little drier than most and the cut made this a very easy blend to pack and light. I have had no problems with re-lights or over packing / tamping. Quality leaf burns completely to the bottom of the bowl with no near end of the bowl acidity and no or very minimal dottle. The nicotine level is low, very low. I have smoked this through various sized bowls and packed my largest billiard without any nicotine effects, which I like. However, other pipers might be put off at the mildness of the blend. The leaf burns a little hot so thinner walled pipes do heat up a bit, because the smoke is mild and the flavors subtle I did sometimes puff to excess which contributed to the chamber heating up.

Blowing smoke through the nose for taste is best and shorter sips better than long draws. The black cherry and cranberry is just subtly noticeable. Unfortunately, the anise not detected at all. Blend performs best in moderate to large billiards. Oddly, it does not do well in a cob or poker. And it also doesn't perform well in the smoke rings column.

I like this blend as a change-up smoke. It is mild and tasty. However, this is not going to be for everyone. There is nothing reminiscent of any of the traditional VA flavors of "mown hay," or "acrid tomato" or the traditional "dried fig / dates," or "zesty brights," or "floral."

This blend might be a good choice to those that want to try a VA coming away from the American aromatic line. Or to those that enjoy a slightly aromatic and very mild smoke.

1 person found this review helpful.

strongirish Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strongirish (249)
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

To review this blend, one has to know and like Highlands style flavoring. No one else will even begin to like it so they might not even waste their time trying to and leave a fair review of it.

This is a great mix of VA, oriental, and little black cavendish. The pouch note is a little gram cracker like in aroma and has somewhat of a musty note as well. It's mostly a brown RR flake with a few darker leaves mixed in but it packed quite nicely in my pipe. Upon lighting, it is a full creamy smoke with the under notes of a tangy and spicy mouthwatering flavor, One does really not notice the added flavor of the perfume is there, until you are well along in your pipe But it does add an interesting and unique flavor and room note that lovers of the Highlands like. It burned all the way down the bowl needing few relites and leaves a fine gray dottle and ash at bottom of the bowl. I enjoy this tobacco on occasion a lot, but then I love Condor and St Brunos but can't get them over here. This is a truly classic old fashioned tobacco and if you enjoy a tobacco of this type you will love it.

1 person found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (287)
Mild to Medium Extra Strong Full Overwhelming

Like Pipestud, I too reviewed this blend under the CAO entry. My tin has the CAO logo but, unlike the description of the entry in TR, there's no mention of any leaf other than the "finest grades of Virginias" (made in Germany). Go figure.

It so happens that in doing some late-spring cleaning I came upon the same tin I opened 7 years ago, some of which contents I sampled for my review. I never really could finish the tin. When I opened it, I was expecting to find not tobacco, but tobacco dust. Well, believe it or not the remaining contents is still moist. Unfortunately so is the sickly perfumed aroma that all those years ago made me sick.

I don't know if this thing is still in production (either under CAO or Dan Tobacco's name). But in all good faith, I honestly cannot recommend this concoction. Not even my LSW would dare use this cheap, odorous perfume!

1 person found this review helpful.

SMOKETSES Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mild to Medium Medium Mild Tolerable

It is rubed out flake. I would like to be able to distinguish this scent. Nice but unknown. It contains different kinds of Virginia and I believe that Virginia lovers will enjoy smoking it. I was not impressed though. It burnt my tongue a bit; therefore I will not have it again. The signing of the final plan of the Declaration of the Independence of the USA was celebrated with this tobacco!?

1 person found this review helpful.

Selah Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Selah (8)
Medium Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a rubbed out flake with a somewhat strong soapy smell, an odour that reminds everyone of Sutliff's Mixture 79. Never having smoked mixture 79, I couldn't say, but it actually reminds me of an undertone in Dobie's Foursquare Blue from many years ago. Plus plum, lavender, jasmine, and tea-shops frequented by little old ladies. Cold rainy summer afternoons.

I really wish I knew what the heck that smell is. It is a very recognizable aroma, but impossible to name. The tobacco itself is not remarkable. Other than the soapy reek, it is an unassuming little flake. Not much there, and what is there seems whipped into quivering silence by the smell.

The major pleasure I derive from it, however, is distinctly decadent. I love the echo of that fragrance which colours the next two or three smokes in a pipe. There is zest in sparking a memory-feeling that I cannot identify with traces of a perfume that I cannot recognize, much like enjoying the presence of a beautiful girl who has a vulgar accent, or an old woman with a youthful and springlike eau de toilette. Even an innocent downy teenager, with scarlet lipstick of a particularly knowing and depraved hue. Intensely delicious, in a degenerate sort of way.

1 person found this review helpful.

Sparky Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sparky (9)
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Just starting back onto a pipe a couple months back, my tobacco diet has been predominantly Aromatics to start out. This has been a short lived enjoyment though, as I have found a lack of flavor and body in most of the aromatics at my local smoke shop.

The beauty of our local smoke shop (not sure how it works elsewhere) is that you can try a bowl of any tobacco that they have, blends that they make, anything that is in bulk offering and sometimes tins.

This tin was sitting on the counter, and my pal that works the counter said go ahead, give it a shot and she would just turn it into a sampler tin.

If this is an example of good virginia tobacco, then I might just become a virginia lover. I found that I enjoyed this quite a bit. It was a touch moist in the tin, however, the yellow faded price tag on the top would tell me it has been sitting there for awhile, so probably could use some drying out.

I didnt notice an extreme casing on this, it seems to have a light sweet smell in the tin. Could not see a speck of black cav like the description says, and couldnt discern any latakia, although I would say my palate may not be quite in tune to that yet. Packed well, burned well.

Overall, I enjoyed this. I found a natural sweetness came out, with a pleasant mild undertone of natural tobacco coming through. Cannot comment on the depth here, as I only smoked a half bowl, but I will return to this tobacco no doubt.

1 person found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (750)
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Ready rubbed cut of various browns with a slight touch of black. Strong licorice tin aroma with a backdrop of dark fruit and a little booze, with perhaps just a smidge of florals. Not really a positive smell but I got something similar recently from McConnells Glen Piper which I enjoyed. So off I went. As an aside, the flat tin was rather tall but still the usual 50 grams. Not sure why it required a taller tin. The tobacco came dry-ish in the tin, furthering my theory that flat tins tend to leak in a small amount of air over time. But if you prefer your tobacco dry, no problem. If you want your 20 year old tobacco to be of the same moisture content as it was fresh, stick with McClellands/Pease-type tins. At least that's what I've been discovering with my aged stash.

The flavoring wasn't nearly as strong in the bowl but it was noticeable with every puff. Same licorice/dark fruit that I noticed in the bouquet. Not as sweet of a taste as I expected - really more spicy and just the barest suggestion of smoke from the latakia, which may constitute as little as 5%. Most noticeable in the snork. Drying out the tobacco causes the flavoring to subside and the high quality Virginias to shine, and of course this smoked best for me very dry. Still got the Cavendish casing taste but the blend became less aromatic. Yes, this is definitely an aromatic but it's one for those who prefer a little flavoring and a lot of tobacco taste rather than over-saucing the soul from the leaf. All in all, I enjoyed this tobacco but it's not a rotation maker. Great for a sometime treat, though.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
Medium Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

It would be a quality blend, but the flavoring doesn't quite work for me at least. I like Lakelands, the occasional American aromatic, but this one, as others have noted, is a bit too perfumey. Not my thing.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

acyv Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
acyv (10)
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Tolerable

Despite of remark on the tin of " Virginia blends..." I tried to get to taste of Virginia, somehow I couldn't taste it that much. Do I recommend this tobacco? Yes I recommend you; in order to find your best taste you must try this tobacco to eliminate from your list :).


Nobody has rated this review yet.

wosbald Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wosbald (111)
Medium Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The tin aroma of these well-prepared, ready rubbed flakes is of wine or, perhaps, concord grape juice with perhaps a touch of floral scenting.

VA (red VA, I assume) is the main component behind which is a dull sweetness which is likely cavendish. Additional sweeteners may also be present. Latakia presence is minimal and virtually unnoticeable, though it does slightly offset the preponderant sweetness.

Richly sweet, Independence is a pleasant enough all-day aromatic smoke which I found to be tasty though unmemorable. This will definitely ghost a briar and seemed to perform best in a narrow gauge chamber.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Inquisitor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Inquisitor (155)
Medium Strong Medium Tolerable to Strong

I have no words that can describe this blend better than has been done above. What were they thinking?

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bigjonburley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bigjonburley (64)
Mild Extra Strong Medium Tolerable to Strong

Oh *, why has though master blender forsaken thee? I won't use the Lord's name in vain here but, this blend sure made me want to. This stuff is like Evening Rose dancing in a hypnotic state at the electric coolaid acid tests, of the mid 60's. Truely a heavily perfumed, psychedelic monster that will leave you screaming, "ohhhh please make it stop!!!!" Just let me for warn ye brothers of the briar, it wont stop, you'll be reminded of this dispicable blend for many bowls after you through the tin away, (most likely just after the first light!) If you decide to try this blend, please do so with a throw-a-way corncob. Your coveted briar beauties will breath a sigh of relief to know that they will be spared the torture of a permanent perfume branding. On a more serious note, the conent of the tin does display a mix of bright VA, and darker cavendish/latakia. The tobacco was of high quality prior to its' perfume tainting. The blend is down right wet with moisture and would require a lenghty drying period, prior to packing. I didn't taste anything like tobacco in this blend, only that wretched perfume. Well, you get my point by now. This stuff is terrible. I'm really adventurous about smoking different blends but this one just rubbed me the wrong way. C.A.O. should consider this blend a total loss and demand a mandatory recall on every tin of this stuff and, apologize to the pipe smoking community for even letting this monster out of the factory.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1457)
Mild to Medium Strong Medium Pleasant

I am somewhat confused (a normal state for me.) I reviewed this as a Dan Tobacco manufactured blend. But it is also listed here separately as CAO and spelled a bit differently. Oh well...

In retrospect, I should have put the tin in my cellar and scheduled its opening for the year 2050. I'd of been dead long before then. This is a perfumed leaf that is shockingly bad.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

badsneaker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
badsneaker (6)
Overwhelming Medium Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

* Bad day at the CAO blending plant is all I can figure. I can and will try almost anything but man, oh man, what the hell were these guys thinking? This blend even beat out Stokkebye's Evening Rose in terms of aromatic weirdness. If someone should ever offer you a tin of this stuff for free--run... really, really fast.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Big Guy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big Guy (12)
Medium Medium to Strong Full Strong

One of the more interesting tobaccos I have tried. In the can it smells just like Worcestershire sauce. Honest! When smoking it it develops a perfume that is very different. I have had a number of Virginias develop a perfumeness, but never to this extent. It strikes me as very English. The presence of Latakia makes it's self known and actually is fairly strong. I kind of like the perfume smell, but may keep this one put away when the Neanderthals are around as I know they will be making some remark about "fag" tobacco or something else really stupid like that. It isn't at all, and while I won't smoke it every day, suspect I will enjoy it from time to time. Hey guys, this is one way to smoke latakia with your better half around and she won't gripe like she does any other time you smoke latakia.

Lights easily, and burns well leaving a greyish ash.

This one is a good outdoor smoke as then the perfume disapates. If my comment about "fag tobacco" offends, I am sorry in advance, but will lay odds that that is what some idiots will say.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (287)
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Mild Strong

I absolutely concur with the esteemed P. Tatum on this one. When I opened the tin, I first thought this could be similar to Bjarne?s Flake de Luxe, or even to Smith?s Old London 100% Virginia, only with a more pronounced aroma of prunes/dried raisins. After a few puffs, however, I realised this is like Dunhill?s Three Year Matured?gone bad! In other similar flakes the natural aroma of red, mature Virginias does not carry on to the smoke, except as a tangy insinuation of the natural sugars. In Independence the aroma and taste are bloated. More than an aromatic casing, this is sickly perfumed.

I should have suspected something was wrong from the strangely high degree of moisture in the tin, which suggests some form of casing or deep spraying with a substance that could easily be cherry, strawberry or Chanel N° 5. It really is a pity, because the broken flake is visually very attractive, and I presume at one point, before its industrial processing, the leaf was of very high quality.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paul Tatum Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paul Tatum (86)
Mild Extra Strong Overwhelming Overwhelming

Upon looking at the tin one sees a picture of the Founding Fathers of the USA drafting the Declaration of Independence . After finally finishing this massive work and changing history , one would be led to believe that the fine men of that time would reach for a bowl of their favorite tobacco . I'd say the patriotic thing would be a local Virgina blend. Having never heard any input on this tobacco I was sort of expecting something of the sort . I was horribly mistaken . On opening the tin my sinuses were attacked by what reminds me of the perfume my third grade teacher bathed in . I took me a month just to work up the nerve to smoke it after opening the tin , and only then did I smoke it in the name of science . It was truely horrid . No tobacco flavor what so ever , just volumes of cheap perfume , ack . Even worse was the fact that it tainted my pipe , and even now heavy latakia blends have no flavor , just perfume . I would only recommend this to people who enjoy walking through the department store perfume department and getting sprayed by sales girls with free samples .

Nobody has rated this review yet.