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Classic medium Navy Cut with "Red Sun" topnote.

Blended ByWessex
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
FlavoringOther / Misc
Packaging50 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy
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Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (1280)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The euphemism "red sun" intrigued me into buying a tin of this one (marketing coup eh?). Judging by the tin note, my guess is that red sun is either grape juice or wine. The smoke itself doesn't really taste flavored but does have a nice wine-like finish. Very nice presentation in the tin, the flakes do not stick together and are at a good smoking moisture from the tin. I've been cube cutting (!) the flakes. Very hard if not impossible to get this stuff to bite. As mentioned, the taste is a bit to the thin side... not as much bottom end as I would've expected. Taste to me is reminiscent of Orlik Golden Sliced minus the bergamot topping and not quite as bright overall. Notes of typical virginia fresh hay plus semi-sweet dark chocolate, raisins, white wine, occasionally brown sugar and even maple. Despite all those descriptors I wouldn't say this is an overly sweet tobacc. The tin does not seal air tight once it has been popped -- this would be my only complaint. I liked this well enough that I'm now going to work my way through the other Wessex virginia flakes as funds allow (marketing coup indeed). Price is just a tad to the rich side but not unjustifiably so, this is well done, high quality stuff. Relax and enjoy.

7 people found this review helpful.

AngeloG Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
AngeloG (1)
Medium to Strong Medium Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is my first review. I actually made an account to review this tobacco. The tobacconist I go to had two tins sitting there for over seven years according to the lady. One of the tins had two small holes on the bottom from rust. I have been searching for a certain effect and flavor from tobacco that I would get just a little from other ones I smoked. I read some reviews and saw that red is what I was looking for. The tobacco was a solid piece. Dried out enough where I can peel some off and load it. Its ready to go. The taste to me is great. It has that tangy tartness and is so damn sweet at the same time. Smooth. Oh wow. I am smoking some right now and I couldn't be happier. I have been smoking a pipe for about a year now and have been through several tobacccos. I may not be an expert but I am a connoisseur to my tastes, and I say this is a perfect tobacco.

6 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (833)
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I had no problem with the flakes sticking together, as some other reviewers noted, but they were quite crumbly, making "fold and stuff" a problem. So I simply rubbed it out, since that seemed to be the state it wanted to be smoked in. The tin aroma was of a winelike hay, and the color ranged from very light to medium tan. One other thing I noticed was that this dried out in the tin very quickly, and I recall having the same experience with Wessex Burley Slices. Perhaps it's the square tin? That was fine, too, since it smoked best in a crumbly state.

This winey, grassy note came out in the taste. There was good virginia tang, typical of red VA, but the taste tended toward thin rather than the usual richness of red VA. That wasn't a bad thing, just unexpected. It was actually a good flavor, but I prefer a bit more richness. The taste was very clean but even though I could taste a topping, it didn't assert itself enough for me to really know what "Red Sun" means. It was mellow tasting but could have used a bit of stoved virginia to really take this one over the top. Then again, this is named Red Virginia Flake for a reason.

Good - very good, in fact - but not one for the rotation. It just lacked that last bit of machismo that I prefer or, alternatively, it lacked some condiment to spice it up just a bit and move it from its monodimensionality. Recommended for someone that truly wants a simple red VA.

6 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

A red sun top note? That's what the descriptive calls the flavoring. Having never tasted red sun before (that I know of, anyway), I guess that must mean lemony and peppery at the same time. That's the impression I came away with.

Wessex has always produced decent, if not outstanding fare. This is no exception. If you like Virginia flakes with a burst of Virginia flavor along with some punch and a little extra flavoring, then Wessex Red Virginia Flake may suit you.

It has an incredibly fast burn for a flake, especially if fully rubbed out.

6 people found this review helpful.

ruffinogold Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ruffinogold (107)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a lovely blend in a few ways . What I really enjoy about it , is that it is very straightforward and is a great representation of what Red Virginia flavor is ! Often times a Virginia blend will be just that [ blends ] and this is the best " teacher " as to what red Virginias taste like in comparison to other styles of Virginias . their is a very mild Top Note and I dont know what it is but I find it pleasurable and it doesnt distract from the flavor of teh leaf . In the tin aroma , there is a super mild whisper of a " ketchup " type aroma ... but nothing like a McClelland product that would be 100X that aroma . I assume that aroma is naturally occurring in Red Virginias and that McClelland goes out of their way to amplify it , where as Wessex does not ... and I think thats a good thing . It burns cool and slow and the flavor is not very complex , nor boring ... it's red Virginia and it's damn good . This is a tin I always have on hand , along with a Ketchupy type McClelland blend [ Tawny Flake ] , which I also love

Pipe Used: Many

Age When Smoked: Fresh and aged [ no more than 4 years ]

4 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2133)
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The red Virginia is mildly tangy with a few grass and earth notes. The sweetness is a little citrusy with a touch of dried fruit. I have no idea what the "red sun" topping is or what it does for this offering besides a mild taste of red wine. It has less strength and less deepness of flavor when compared to products like McClelland Red Cake. Has a mild nic-hit. Won't bite or get harsh. More of an introductory red Virginia flake. Breaks apart very easily, burns at a moderate rate with a consistent taste, and leaves no dottle or moisture at the finish. Has a very pleasant after taste and makes a decent all day smoke. Two and a half stars.

4 people found this review helpful.

calboy8686 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
calboy8686 (11)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Hints of earth along with toasted oats greet you when you open the tin. The flake is very easily rubbed out and is almost perfect in moisture content for easy lighting and smoking. It's defiantly fuller in taste than Gold Virginia Flake but also more complex at the same time. Smoking through the bowl, one word of caution is you don't get it too hot because it will become unpleasant on the palate and give you a little tung bite. For the Virginia lover a MUST for your rotation along with Gold Virginia Flake. I will try Brown Virginia Flake later on today at some point and write in a review as well.

2 people found this review helpful.

SirLoirn Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SirLoirn (126)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Tin: Light to dark brown with ample streaks of blonde, giving a dark chestnut hue. Moderate fermented cereal, VA hay scent. The 1x3x1/16" sheets of tobacco are easy to separate, supple, not overly moist.

Packing & Lighting: The sheets of the tobacco are easily crumbled into pieces which can be readily packed. Burned to the bottom with maybe one relight. It smokes easily, even if a sheet is just rolled up and stuffed into the pipe.

Left out to dry, it was crispy dry in 30 minutes. This drying greatly reduces the pepper effect on the mouth, allowing one to more fully experience the tobacco flavors.

Taste & Aroma: Similar to its sister blend, Brigade Classic Virginia, but with less taste or aroma, less red VA tang and not as much peppery effect on the mouth.

The key to getting the most enjoyable smoke out of RVF is to get it half-dry. Fold a sheet uup, twist it to shreds, then let it dry until it is just crackly to the touch. This eliminates the pepper effect and allows a mild malted cereal flavor to evolve. It's like two different tobaccos.

Nicotine: This is the one aspect that RVF has more, of compared to BCV. RVF is medium strength.

Room Note: Pleasant ripe, smoky, walnut and grain. Rather than room note, it seems more to cling to one's person.

Overall: RVF is clean and natural tasting, but has less taste or aroma than BCV. I would go with BCV. Worth a try, at 3.4 stars.

After I learned to dry the tobacco just right, I give it a 3.8, 4 stars.

2 people found this review helpful.

gnossos Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gnossos (39)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Absolutely delicious. It's bright and tangy and smooth... I hope I can always get my hands on this stuff. Beautifully packaged, beautiful flakes. I reccomend using a smaller bowl for this one, I don't usually bother with discriminating to that extent with flakes - big bowls, small bowls, it's all good - but this one really sings in a smaller bowl.

No tongue bite, delicious, and smells wonderful. Highly reccomended.

2 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1603)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Wessex - Red Virginia Flake.

Having reviewed Wessex's Brown Virginia and Gold Virginia flakes, I wanted to add this one to my reviews once it had arrived. So, it came a few days ago, and given I have some time to hand this morning here it is:

The flakes are quite thin, medium brown, with a tin note that has more of an aromatic hit than the smoke. Moisture's great, making rubbing/filling easy.

Like their Gold Virginia Flake, I enjoy the smoke. Igniting's easy, and the burn from it's good. I can't particularly identify the Red Sun top note from the description, nor do I really know what I'm looking for: what is Red Sun? The flavour I get is one of a ripe, tangy, slightly sweet, Virginia, developing a bit of a doughy taste after a third. There's just enough depth to it to keep it rich, without becoming heavy. The temperature from it's medium, and I get absolutely no tongue bite.

Nicotine: mild to medium. Room-note: lovely.

Wessex Red Virginia Flake: absolutely no problem with highly recommending it:

Four stars.

Pipe Used: Altinok Lee Van Cleef; Friday pipe

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From:

1 person found this review helpful.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (729)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Very nice flavors in this flake. Some very tangy citrus notes, a touch of darker fruit, and a topping that is more sweet fruit candy-like than wine-like to my taste buds. Deeper into the bowl the topping fades a bit, but it's still tangy and sweet with some bread-like notes. A lovely smoke.

Mild to medium in body. Flavoring is very mild. Medium in taste. Burns very well.

Pipe Used: MM Little Devil Cutty, Little Devil Acorn, Marcus

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From:

1 person found this review helpful.

H Gillman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
H Gillman (39)
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

I bought this on a whim online and was not too sure what to make of it. I am glad I did. I am a fan of flakes and this one is yet another one I am glad to add to my collection. The tin I got was a couple years old and had a very nice note. A wee bit of sweetness and a wonderful nutty aroma. The initial smoke was mellow and smooth. It lit well, stayed lit and burned down to a powdery grey ash. I will most definitely buy this again.

Pipe Used: Peterson P-lip 301

Age When Smoked: 2-3 years unslealed

Purchased From: Online

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipe-arazzo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe-arazzo (71)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

I have only smoked this three times so far, but it is already remarkable for its subtle but pleasant taste, its fantastic aroma (when I say "room note" here I mean to me...I don't have opportunities to ask non-smokers how they like the smell of my tobacco), and its almost unbelievable lack of bite, for a Virginia. I have to put this in the top 2-4 Virginia blends I have tried, with Marlin Flake, Barbary Coast (ok, that one is mostly a Burley, but I count it) and Butera's Matured Ribbon. The aroma and flavor can best be described as orange, chocolate, and pepper. It also rubs out and packs easily. It is a tobacco that I give one of my highest compliments to: "user friendly." And of course, the unique tins of Wessex do add something, however marginal. If all-day smoking were a possibility these days, this would be that kind of blend.

Update: It seems if you rub this out too much (and that means rub it out at all as it is a "fragile" flake) the "top note" becomes the entire song. Pure lemon pepper. But if you basically wad it into a ball and stuff it in (with perhaps a bit of rubbed-out tobacco on the bottom and top of the bowl) it tastes much more like tobacco, with only a subtle flavoring. If I could change one thing about this, it would be to have a bit more sweetness. Otherwise, complex and intriguing and a treat.

1 person found this review helpful.

Briarabbit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Briarabbit (116)
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Although I have marked this as, "One of my favourites,I smoke this regulary", I do not smoke this regularly as for the same reason the last brother of the brair mentioned, and thats the high price. Is it one of my favourites? Yes,absolutely it is one of my favorites. This tobacco is of the highest quality and consistency. It is however pressed into one of the hardest blocks of tobacco I've ever had the pleasure of smoking. Instead of removing a strip of flake,one has to tear it off which I don't mind as I hardly rub it all out anyway. The taste is exceptional RED VIRGINIA mellowness. It does have a good nicotene kick,burns well,and tastes devine.Highly recomended.

1 person found this review helpful.

Lochinvar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lochinvar (78)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I often find the Wessex offerings to be hit or miss, and this one was a miss. This has some red virginia oomph to it, it does not have the full red virginia character of some other flakes and blends, such as McCranies Red Virginia. There are far to many good flakes to sample to waste much time on this. However if this is all you have to choose from its not bad stuff. Just not remarkable.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Cactus John Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Cactus John (34)
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is a very good tobacco. But I liked the Brown Flake just a little bit more. It was a hard call but I thought the brown was just a bit more flavorful. If you like red virginia you'll like this one but if your just looking for a straight virginia flake go for the brown instead.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ajaj Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ajaj (69)
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

This is nice! This is the first all virginia which does not bite the tongue or pallet. The words I use to describe this fine tobacco are tangy dry sour with hints of grass and hay. Perfect! The smell in the tin is winelike and a hint of fermentation is also in the smoke. I recommend this to anyone just starting to smoke virginias because of the lack of bite. This is a great tobacco.


Nobody has rated this review yet.

LoisKelly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LoisKelly (55)
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

This impeccably tooled flake is competent in every way, but doesn't distinguish itself sufficiently to make it into my rotation. Still, it's a very decent smoke that should find many friends.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (127)
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Pleasant

This is a light brown flake in a 50g tin, honey colored in overall appearance. The flakes are very thin, difficult to separate and can be a bit crumbly. The tobacco rubs out and packs easily, lights quickly and burns all the way to the bottom of the bowl with very little tending. Lordy, this is a good smoke. This is a lightly sweetened Red Virginia and I would classify it as a typical German made flake. The flavor is of a full, rich Red Virginia. The quality of the tobacco is exceptional. You get the distinctive Red Virginia tang right from the first puff. This tobacco has no bite for me, but it does have nicotine strength in the mouth and on the tongue. This is not a boring smoke as straight RV's can sometimes be. The RV flavor is extraordinary and gradually strengthens in nicotine and flavor as the smoke moves down the bowl. I have never smoked a better tasting RV. However, at $8.20 per 50g tin, I will not be smoking this everyday, but it will be one of those I always keep on hand for a special treat. Most highly recommended to the lover of Red Va. Paddy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Although this was one of the better red VA flakes that I've tried, I've yet to find great enjoyment from any of them. In the tin, the aroma is of quality tobacco and the oils have stained the wax paper liner. The color ranges from golden to deep brown. Pressure/time have resulted in a solid cube of tobacco within the tin. The nice, chewing gum like layers of other flakes are absent and the tobacco is very hard to separate evenly. This is a major consideration for me since I normally don't rub out my flakes. Although a cool smoke, as with other red VAs, I found just to much VA tang after the first few puffs and couldn't consider this as an all day or steady smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.