Reviews: 81470 Tobaccos: 7058What's NewLoginRegister
Product Image

Where to Buy


Medium strength flake tobacco. Blended from the finest Virginia and burleys.

Notes: From the G&H Catalogue: A further variation of the popular Brown Flake. A little casing added to the Virginias. A subtle difference.

BrandGawith, Hoggarth & Co.
Blended ByGawith, Hoggarth & Co.
Manufactured ByGawith, Hoggarth & Co.
Blend TypeVirginia/Burley
ContentsBurley, Virginia
FlavoringSweet / Sugar
Packaging50 grams tin, bulk
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy
Product Image
Room Note

Favorite Of 9 Users

66 reviews
4 star:
3 star:
2 star:
1 star:
Sort By
Please login to review this blend.
JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

The Lakeland essence is hardly present. You do get a light nuttiness, some molasses and earth from the burley. The Virginias sport a bit of earth and grass, light citrus and some darker fruit. The Virginias are more obvious than the burley. I notice a slight sugar topping, and a mild floral, herbal note. The latter may come from the Virginias as much as a topping. The nic-hit is mild to medium. Won't bite or get harsh even when pushed. It may need a light dry time, though that seems to strengthen the vegetative taste of the Virginias just a little. Burns at a slow to moderate pace, clean and cool with a consistent flavor. Needs some relights. Leaves a little moisture in the bowl. Has a pleasant after taste.

20 people found this review helpful.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (227)
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I've been enjoying GH offerings as of late (Brown Flake Unscented & Scented, and Rum Flake). I now decided on Best Brown #2. Packed in the typical GH way in the plastic baggie, folded neatly and inserted into the tin. Moisture content was good and not overly moist as with SG tobaccos. Initial tin aroma had no soap smell whatsoever. The tobacco smelled like yeast/unbaked bread and with deep sniffing something I was familiar with but couldn't quite describe. It was not floral in any way. At times it reminded me of a ginger snap cookie, but I'm not sure if what I was smelling was actually ginger. What ever it was, I did like it. There was no pre-light taste detected on the draw. I rubbed it up a bit and it loaded easily. Lighting was no problem and only required a few re-lights along the way due to its freshness. Overall the smoke was very smooth. The Virginias made themselves known but in a subtle, spicy way. There was no taste of the typical Lakeland soap or florals in this one. I would have to say that this is one of the most balanced Virginia/Burley blends I have ever smoked. It was sweet in a natural way, not cloying, but good Va sweetness, and had no bitterness whatsoever. It never burned hot regardless of my puffing cadence. There was no moisture/gurgling issues. Just a clean, smooth tobacco taste with that hint of that Virginia spice throughout. The Burleys were not at all harsh and there were no throat issues either. It is milder than their Brown Flake Unscented - not as full bodied - but also different in taste profile as well. This, for me, is a set it and forget it smoke that is enjoyable from first puff to the last. A well put together flake and one I could smoke more than one bowl a day, each and every day. Much preferred over SGs Brown Flake by way of comparison. My experience is GH smokes are smooth and SG smokes are rough. Highly recommended!

UPDATE 3-25-13: Flakes are drying out nicely in the tin/bag they were packed in. Sniffing reveals a real nice depth in the aroma. Deep like licorice -and in combo with a subtle hint of molasses. Translates into the taste very nicely, too!

16 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (839)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The G&H Lakeland tour continues, and continues to impress!

Nice even brown appearance in the (2 oz) baggie. Just a faint whiff of what has become to be known as "Lakeland florals" but I would regard this as a mostly unscented tobacco. Very similar to my tastebuds to the Brown Flake Unscented that I just smoked but unfortunately, I didn't do a side-by-side comparison. Tasting notes indicate that the BFU was more earthy and rough, perhaps from a higher concentration of burley. This one was creamier - an almost buttery finish to the taste. Milder, but still with a decently robust flavor. Since I've ordered pounds of both, I'll be able to compare them and update this review. As it stands, this seems to be the one to recommend to someone that found DFU just a bit unruly and feisty. BB #2 is a slightly tamer version, without the taste suffering.

G&H flakes are without peer. If you want to try one without a lot of the extra flavors/scents they put in their blends but still want one that is mild, here is a good start.

11 people found this review helpful.

panduji68 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
panduji68 (28)
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Wow, from reading the previous reviews, this is one highly controversial pipe tobacco! I almost wonder if the quality control at GH could be causing such a wide gap in takes on the added flavoring? Inconsistencies during processing maybe? I can't believe everyone is tasting the same tobacco with such wide gaps in opinions on strength of flavoring, etc... My tin smelled more like a sweet iced tea with lemon! None of the Lakeland type essence as in Ennerdale Flake.

At any rate, I found this tobacco to be highly pleasant, sweet and medium bodied. Very cool burning, no bite at all, and great to the bottom of the bowl. Very consistent throughout, satisfying, and a solid three star blend for me. I really like the stuff, and don't get any of the Lakeland flavor many have mentioned. Slightly sweet rum in the taste, with a tin aroma of sweet iced tea with lemon. Who knows!

Pipe Used: Large bowl Nording briar

10 people found this review helpful.

DrT999 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrT999 (266)
Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

First up, yes, there is some sort of essence used in this. However, I don't believe it is any sort of floral or herbal essence or combination of them, so I wouldn't really call this a 'Lakeland' in the sense that Grasmere (foral) or Ennerdale (floral & herbal) are. Looking over all the comments, I wonder is the idea of it being a light rum might not be correct. I also wonder if most GH base tobaccos aren't produced in some way that give some smokers a mouthfeel that they identify as 'soapy' even when there aren't any extra flavors added. (Or perhaps I am just too used to Lakelands now.)

In any event, this is a nice slow-burning flake, the combination of VA, Burley, and whatever flavor it might be making it a somewhat complex easy-smoking mixture.

7 people found this review helpful.

TK Pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TK Pipe (101)
Mild Medium Medium Tolerable

Best Brown. #2 … Once you get by the third world tin presentation, you will be rewarded with a smooth, mild and bite free smoke, with outstanding burn characteristics, complimented with a unique mild bar soap, aroma and taste, with few familiar Virginia flavors present. After so many years of smoking the likes of McClelland, C/D and a splash of Danish Virginias, I have come to expect a certain flavor profile from my Virginias, not found in this blend, this stuff is to strange for my taste.

But in all fairness, just because I don't like anchovies on my pizza, does not mean you won't, some love it that way, and some will love Best Brown #2, just not me. Guess there right, you can't teach an old dog anything new.

6 people found this review helpful.

KinnScience Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
KinnScience (30)
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a great lakeland flake. It is the epitome of English tradition. I've always said that the flavor of anything can be reduced to terms that carry negative connotation. McClelland flavor to Ketchup, Lakeland to soap and flowers, etc. The problem with this is that our tongues can only detect a limited number of flavors, and we can reduce anything down to a common term such as "ketchup" or whatever. Someone can say that a delicate Merlot tastes like "grape kool-aid with too little sugar added" if they seek to "reduce to absurdity", if you will. Ignoring the subtle delicacies that play upon our palate to "sweet", "sour", "bitter", ignores the subtle combinations.

I wonder how Lakeland was described before the masses had "dove" soap, or whatever folks are calling the Lakeland flavor these days. Most people in the 1800's didn't know what modern day soap tastes or smells like ... especially men. To these populations, this Lakeland tobacco was probably described as having a "buttery" flavor married with a "blackberry wine". Perhaps our modern day industrial society has produced so many artificial flavors along with condiments with preservatives that we begin to identify everything we taste by common foods, condiments, and toiletries that are mass produced.

If we want to reduce what would otherwise be experienced as enjoyable flavors in our wines, tobaccos, teas, etc. Then we may be missing something. I've heard those with developed palates say of many things, "you have to develop a taste for it". Caviar is one such experience (though I never have developed a taste for sturgeon eggs... salmon .. sure.. but not black or green caviar). "Bitter" is another "developed taste" (English beer .. heavy on the hops). What if someone said that John Adams beer tastes like raw Kale? Would that be accurate?

I won't say BB#2 it tastes like soap and flowers. Instead I'll say that It renders subtle flavors of blackberry and buttered brandy. The nutty flavor of Burly comes through and Burly is further tamed by the Lakeland flavor. The Virginia offers a subtle and natural sweetness.

For those of you who don't enjoy a "full-on" Lakeland flavor, aging takes the Lakeland down considerably. After a year, The Lakeland is better than half of what it was when fresh. Also, the Virginia comes through better over the Burly. Be sure to dry it a bit before smoking (I fill my bowls the night before smoking).

For those who don't want any flavor at all ... try the G&H Best Brown Unscented.

One final note: The Lakeland flavor/aroma is something for which you have to develop a taste. :-) 3 stars

6 people found this review helpful.

DrumsAndBeer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrumsAndBeer (203)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a great medium bodied smoke. The flavor is slightly sweet & spicy with a prominent tangy quality to it. There is an added top dressing but I really had to search for it and when compared to most other G&H offerings, it is very subdued. The flavoring is listed as “floral essences” but I get more of a honeyed-citrus scent with just a smidgen of a nondescript floral note. Regardless, this blend is a superb Virginia/Burley with nice flavor and exceptional balance. It also burns wonderfully. As the flavors develop, I get hints of a grassy oat-like flavor along with a spiciness that gradually builds adding a bit of welcomed strength & complexity.

Very flavorful, high quality, cool smoking and about the most straight-forward natural tasting tobacco of the G&H flakes I have tried. Excellent stuff.

Pipe Used: Briar, but mostly cob

Age When Smoked: 3

5 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Best Brown #2 doesn’t offer the strong aromatic scents of many of the other Lake District blends. But that’s not to say that it isn’t noticeable. But I would disagree with those that say this has strong or overpowering Lakeland flavors. The only way that would be the case would be if the other Lakeland style blends haven’t been explored by that person. Although I still would recommend a pipe dedicated to Lakelands. The flavor offers a bit of brown sugar along with the light Lakeland flavor. As others have noted, there isn’t much of the usual floral or soapy flavor, but something I can’t put my finger on. The Virginias are of good quality and the burley adds a nice backbone to the blend. I like it new, and I have smoked it up to about three years old and prefer it aged. I prefer to cut it into small pieces as that offers the best flavor for me. There is a bit of strength here too, but not as much as other blends in this genre. I would put it more at the medium level. As mentioned, BB2 cellars very well too. On a tip from a well-known blender, I have also tried it with just a pinch of Latakia and it makes for a totally different, but satisfying blend too.

Age When Smoked: 1 year

Similar Blends: Pipes and Cigars.

4 people found this review helpful.

Pipe4ever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe4ever (204)
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Good tobacco quality but unfortunately the taste is extremely soapy for my liking, I simply cant enjoy the lakeland soapiness.

4 people found this review helpful.

RCUSElder Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RCUSElder (244)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend is definitiely a classic G&H blend.

Appearance and Tin Aroma: It looks like a fine stoved VA flake, smells like one too, but also smells like a fine English style tea!

Packing and Lighting: It comes in a rectangular tin and is in a plastic bag within the tin. It is pretty moist upon opening. I recommend rubbing out a bowlfull and letting dry out a bit before packing. Once dried out a little, 2-3 lights max.

Initial Flavor: Classic Lakeland flavor, but restrained compared to the other offerrings by the same blender. Cool, but flavorful.

Mid-Bowl: The scenting does not build up in strength, the Va is in the forefront, the Burley is for body, sometimes I get a flavor hint from it. Round, mellow, gets ino the zone easily.

Bottom of Bowl: Strength does not build up too much, this is definitely a all-day medium blend. Ends with a dry, fluffy-grey ash. Leaves a clean taste in your mouth, not sooty at all.

Overall: This is a classic scented VA/Burley flake. Not something I smoke regularly, but will keep on hand for an ocaisional treat. This will flavor your briar, you have been warned! I have pipes dedicated for Light, Medium, and Full scented blends. This one falls into the "light-scented" category. Give it a try, it is a high quality offering from master blenders G&H, enjoy...

4 people found this review helpful.

Ranger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ranger (64)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

I've had two of these tins stashed away for two years now and thought it was time to sample one. I don't know what some of the other reviewers were sampling, but I find very little of the typical odors or toppings that can be associated with G & H or SG tobaccos. Also, this is much better than Brown Flake in my opinion. A delicate flake that needs little rubbing out and very little airing. The burn was perfect and the taste was incredible. Sweet, sugary with good body, and I mean sweet from good Virginia tobaccos, very minimal from toppings. I've been rotating Cairo and King Eider lately and BB#2 is a nice change of pace

4 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1644)
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Gawith Hoggarth - Best Brown #2.

Quite a surprise initially: often as not flakes can be a bit too damp but this one has an incredible level of moistness. I always rub my flakes and getting this rubbed is totally straight forward: it only needs a light rubbing, not the heavy ordeal that some need. I know this includes a few floral/Lakeland attributes but I find this to be very vague from the un-lit aroma; all I really detect are the tobaccos.

Once lit it's easy to form my opinion, do I like it? Yes. There's a slight floral/Lakeland addition but this is only really made available via retro-haling the smoke. The tobaccos are superbly balanced giving a full Va-bur taste. The temperature isn't too warm, but below medium. The burns consistency is faultless.

Nicotine: medium. Room-note: mild Lakeland.

This would be an excellent regular smoke.

Four stars.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: Various

Purchased From: Various

3 people found this review helpful.

Jorge Soler Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jorge Soler (129)
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

The tin note has a very strong smell of vinegar. The Enerdale/Lakeland essence is quite apparent and it does not wane during your smoke, so be advised. The combination of virginia and burley tobaccos is quite balanced, but the virginia is more in the foreground. This leaves the burley tobacco lurking in the background adding body to this blend. I find this Lakeland pretty much in line with the rest of GH's tobaccos in this range, but the burley content will set it apart. As an overall achievement, I'd say it is not as sweet or earthy as other virginia based tobaccos, but the burley's floral essence is missing somehow. These flakes will need/benefit from some drying time and can be smoked as broken flake tobacco, so don't rub it all out for a better smoking experience. A very slow burner, this tobacco is. As for the nicotine content, I'd say is rather medium, but it will feel stronger the more you smoke. This goes for the taste too: it really buids up as you go past every quarter of your bowl. The room note might feel soapy at times, but I'd say is wife friendly and not overpowering at all. I think this could be a good mid day/early morning choice for those pipe smokers who like stronger blends throughout the day. And if you like most of the Lakelands, you should not miss it, so give it a go.

Edit1: this baccy is ticking so many boxes, so I am going to upgrade to 4 stars.

Edit2 (16/05/2016): I have been smoking this tobacco for quite some time now and I think I have a better appreciation of it at this point in time. This is perhaps one of the best GH blends that I ever had, so I decided to put it in my rotation. My only complaint, and this will apply to Brown Flake too, is that it does not seem to evolve as nicely as other blends I am familiar with the more you progress with your smoke. The first two quarters of your bowl are quite remarkable with its subdued sweetness and the casing hitting you here and there, but as you move into the last quarter, it sort of becomes acrid and somehow looses its cool. Not that you cannot profit from any of it, but not as enjoyable as the beginning of your bowl. As for the rest, this tobacco wants to be sipped at a very low pace and you will probably enjoy it the most keeping its moist content. Do not worry about relighting every now and then as it will burn through and through if your smoking cadence does not cloy it in the end. If you smoke it properly, you will end up with nothing but white ashes in your bowl.

3 people found this review helpful.

Smoke_Ring Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Smoke_Ring (158)
Very Strong Very Strong Overwhelming Overwhelming

Best Brown #2 [Lakeland Flavor];

Star Rating = 2.0;

Rating Scores - 10 is the Best and 0 is the Worst;

Pouch Note = 6;

Room Note = 6;

Flavor = 6;

Bite = 6;

Burn = 6;

After Taste = 6;

Raw Score = 36;

Rated Percentage = 60%;

Comment = Smooth, Very Strong, has the Famous Lakeland Floral Flavor, Wife complained about the nasty Aroma. You have heard the old saying “Go smell the roses”, well this is you chance to “Go smoke the roses”. Some people report that they actually like the Lakeland Floral Flavor, but my guess is most people are going to hate this Blend. I was very disappointed with this Gawith Hoggarth & Co. best seller.

3 people found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (492)
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

My first experience with anything Gawith and I am impressed. In fact, I don't think I have finished any tin as quick as the 50g I purchased from P&C. I will definitely need to buy much more and in bulk.

As to Lakeland/floral/soapy, there is back and forth as to whether this blend contains any. I am by no means an expert, but I must add that I tasted something that defintely resembled what I frequently see described as Lakeland essence. I enjoyed it and noticed a lot of floral scents in soaps and perfumes that reminded me of it.

I am anxious to immerse myself in Gawith and think I will start with an order today.

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipemanuk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipemanuk (76)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

What is it with folks who persist in writing reviews on blends of tobacco they clearly know at the outset they will not like. I have no problems with an objective critique...but when you get comments which run like I don't like Lakelands and this is a typical example and then give it 1 star, kinda negates the whole reason for these pages in the first place. If you do not like a genre, then fine, leave it alone and don't rubbish it on TR. Try the varities you do like and write about how you compare them. That way we all learn something :-)

Looking at the sensible reviews for Best Brown no.2 then, it would appear that there are two utterly different flakes masquerading under the same name!

The Best Brown no.2 that I know is a gentle sweet, slightly rummy and completely delicous flake somewhat reminiscent of its cousin Rum Flake but NOTHING like the Lakeland Florals that some of our friends here seem to be having problems with. Juna Gu is a case in point and to my mind the poor lad's not actually had Best Brown no.2 to review. I agree with him that the Lakeland florals are a difficult genre for some to come to terms with in order to extract the yummy tobacco flavours, but I promise him and the rest of you that BB no.2 is definitely NOT a Lakeland Floral...its a gentle sweet and fresh buttery flavoured flake. Anyone who gets the Lakeland Floral has been sold the wrong baccy.

So my the reviews that match creamy, sweet, buttery flavours and you'll be reading about BB no.2. The others are I know not wot :-)

3 people found this review helpful.

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

One of only a few Lakeland blends that I like. This one seems to have an additional flavor that I can't quite identify. Almost like rum, maybe it is rum. The VaBur underlying these flavors is of high quality and I wouldn't mind smoking it by itself. It's pretty much about the added flavors though and I find them to be very sweet and tasty.

Medium in body. Medium to full in taste. Flavoring is medium. Needs a little drying time.

Pipe Used: MM Country Gentleman, Diplomat Apple, Mark Twain

Age When Smoked: fresh bulk

Purchased From:

2 people found this review helpful.

tabaco Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tabaco (111)
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

Some folks adore the Lakeland essence, I for one abhor it. And really I should've anticipated as much. Mind you the tin was a gift from a well intentioned gift/contribution from a newer member of our garage pipe/cigar/homebrew club. He's still apprenticing in the dark arts of briar lore.

Overall an okay smoke which occasionally peeps out from the casing, if you concentrate.

I don't care for the heavy ghost in the pipe for about 5 bowls or so, and the Sunlight detergent thing does not float my boat at all. Anyway, one of the other chaps liked it a tad more than the rest of us so he adopted the tin; thankfully.

2 people found this review helpful.

joeljcj2 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
joeljcj2 (10)
Very Mild Very Mild Medium Pleasant

i am currently smoking from a 500g bulk box of gh-bb2 which i sealed 2 yrs ago. it is quite wonderful. mild and gentle, smoothed out nicely by burley,nice fresh virginia taste, chocolate? a wee bit lakeland-floral but not excessive. i usually smoke sam gawith best brown, and this is more different than i had remembered---more floral certainly, maybe even smoother. it burns beautifully, cool right down to a fine white powder. i do not taste either perique or any latakia or that family.... no spice. it is remarkably consistent from the start right now to the dottle. ( eh- a little sharp at the dottle but what isn't?). this makes a fine tobacco when aged like this. i wish i had aged more of it.

2 people found this review helpful.

Puffingstuff Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Puffingstuff (100)
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I'm with my Engish friend who say's he's never found a soap that smells like tobacco. I too get tired of hearing "soapy taste".But I guess if that is what it tastes like to you...very well then. This is very fine tobacco that I think doesn't get enough respect. Do you like Stonehaven? Well here you are! Just with an almond and floral essence that makes it even more delectable. Smooth, mild, nutty,sweet and well rounded. This tobacco can be an all day smoke. Goes great with a coffee.

2 people found this review helpful.

Budman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Budman (25)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I really do not understand some of the reviewers complaining about the floral and soapiness. This blend does not have that at all.

This is just a great old fashioned Burley and Virginia flake. In my opinion the sweetness is merely from the high quality Virginia used and not a topping.

No need to reinvent the wheel here.

Rub it out, let it dry some and smoke it.

Highly recommended.

2 people found this review helpful.

eamonclever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
eamonclever (45)
Medium Very Mild Full Pleasant

if I get it I smoke it! I love brown virginia flake tobaccos and this one is a good example how different people smoking the same tobacco might taste it´s amplitude. There is a long story with lakeland tobaccos due to flavouring, meaning this is all about soap. This is rubbish and shows to me that most of the pipesmokers don´t even take their time to smoke a good bowl with excitement and slowly. If they do, they might taste that what they think to be soapy might become a taste made of hay and flowers. Especially #2 is a good example of rich tobacco. I would not mind if most of the reviewers downgrade a bad tobacco because of its taste, but I don´t accept it with this one. It is not a question of good and bad, it is just the taste question which starts the argumentation, but it still is a tobacco of high quality. It has a medium strength an is not a nicotine bomb, but you get a good quantity of this stuff right away. I recommend it to all pipesmokers who are fond of tobacco at first and who are anxious and willing to even taste more different aromas than the sweet danish type.

2 people found this review helpful.

Lancelot Gobbo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lancelot Gobbo (23)
Medium Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

My stock of Best Brown #2 is now nearly two years old and I visited it again recently. I'm so glad that I did! The Germolene-antiseptic cream scent is much milder, to the extent that if a pipe is packed and left for an hour before lighting it is hard to notice. The tobacco now has a rich 'tang' on the tongue and palate without much tendency to bite. Truly delicious!

Edit 13 June 09: This flake continues to grow in my estimation. Rich, strong tobacco with just the combination of flavours and scents that make the whole process worthwhile. It is one of the few tobaccos that would make me happy if I could have no other for the rest of my days.

2 people found this review helpful.

Knightsmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Knightsmoker (137)
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The VA's lead the way here. They have a slight grassy note, along with toasted grain, a little yeasty at times and a dark fruit note and a very light sweet spicy note as well. The burley is earthy, with a slightly nutty nuance here and there. The topping is sweet and adds to the overall sweetness of the blend. The lakeland essence has been added but with a light hand. It comes forward when lighting, and at subsequent relights but otherwise remains in the background. The nic is closer to mild-med and there is a creaminess to the smoke. Overall, I would place the total strength at the bottom end of med. Needs a few relights but worth the effort. Smoked slowly all these nuances can be tasted smoked quickly the lakeland essence seems to be more forward. This would be a great entry into the lakeland genre for those who are hesitant to try them.

Age When Smoked: 6 months

1 person found this review helpful.

Stefanos Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stefanos (150)
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Long and thick flakes of differing hues of brown with quite a few crystals formed on them. The tobacco I receive was in a condition ready to smoke straight away.

Earthy and bready/yeasty Virginias cut with some nutty Burley and spiced with an almost imperceptible Lakeland aroma at first which adds a higher note. As the smoke progresses the more I realized the scenting. It has a mildly ‘sharp’, even grassy, overall taste and I do not mean this in a bad way. It tastes like natural tobacco and quite aged at that. Sweetness is there and it also feels natural. Smokes well and cool to a fine grey ash with no bite.

I find that Best Brown no.2 has more flavor than strength which I find only mild to medium. So I do not find it completely satisfying in the nicotine department – but some may like lighter tobaccos in strength. Room note is a little cigaretty.

1 person found this review helpful.

WillardFan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WillardFan (86)
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This flake is a bit thicker than something like a Dunhill Flake. This being the case, I cut this up cube style, and gravity feed it into a medium sized billiard. A light tamp, and you're off to the races. For an unscented blend, I definitely taste the Lakeland Essence. Not too heavy, but it's there. Very smooth, lots of smoke. Nic hit is mild. It's an excellent flake, but I would love it even more, without the floral taste. Probably won't order this one again...

Pipe Used: Captain Black Yeoman

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From:

1 person found this review helpful.

CherchezLaghost Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CherchezLaghost (52)
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

The first 2 oz or so of this blend that i smoked, i was firmly in the "no lakeland essence added" camp. I would have said, with certainty, that only a very slight molasses/brown sugar flavor was added to this delicious virginia. However, after not touching anything but mb virginia no.1 for a few weeks, i return to it, and upon first light i can say that there is definitively an incredibly subtle floral note may even be residual upon three machinery or presses used, but it is there. And it is lovely. Its so subtle as to be missed if one has been smoking any lakelands in the previous days.

Ok. Now to the blend. BB#2 is an absolutely 1st rate flake from GH. I am a fan of the house in general, and i must say that if one wants to try out a very natural offering in this style, you could do much worse than bb2. The flakes are moist, and benefit from drying time. I almost never have the patience, and it smokes well as is too. I prefer to fully rub this one out, contrary to my typical flake preparation, because the flakes are so dense that a full rubbing doesnt seem to change the burn or flavor much. The flavor is a rich, smooth, sweet aged virginia, with bready sweet notes. Think confectioners sugar. Very sweet, but balanced by deep tobacco flavor. The floral notes are most prominent upon initial lighting, and seem to recede quickly, or rather to soften into a vague herbal spice. I taste the Virginias most prominently, but the burley is present throughout and lends a nutty, earthy flavor and a depth of body to the smoke. A superbly well integrated flavor characterizes the entire bowl. Burns exceeding slowly with absolutely no chance of bite. Is right in the sweet spot for me where depth, flavor, and nicotine intersect for an all day smoke. I am finishing up my first purchase of this, 6 ozs, of which i smoked 2 upon purchase and the remainder up to just over a year from when i received it. I will be purchasing much more to cellar. I greatly enjoy it, and while i dont smoke it every day, i do reach gor it several times weekly. Medium level of nicotine. Highly recommended. I could see lovers of viginias or aromatics very much enjoying this vlend, though it is a very high quality blend that offers far more than a typical aromatic.

Pipe Used: Cobs, meerschaums, briar

Age When Smoked: New to 1 year

Purchased From:

Similar Blends: SG best brown, though i much prefer bb2.

1 person found this review helpful.

hawky454 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hawky454 (93)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Sweet and sour, tangy and delicious!

This is yet another one from GH&Co that just ticks all the right boxes. To be honest, this one took me awhile to figure out and really fall for. I remember tasting a light Lakeland topping when I first tasted this blend but I don't pick up on that anymore, at all. I'm assuming I just got used to the topping and I just don't taste it anymore. This is a very sweet, tangy Virginia blend. The leaf had some obvious age on it when I got it as I could see the beautiful sugar crystals (bloom) covering the flakes. I also pick up that vinegar, ketchup type smell that you will sometimes find with well aged, fermented VA's. When I say this blend is sweet, I mean it is sweeeeet. Not in the overly topped aromatic kind of way but in the all natural tobacco kind of way. I'm sure I'm picking up on some of the casing in this tobacco but overall it tastes just like a natural tobacco and it's absolutely wonderful! This one isn't too strong in the nic dept but it's strong enough to satisfy my needs and I'm a proud nicotine addict. What we have here is another winner from the GH&Co house and I rate it as an absolutely essential blend for the experienced pipe smoker, their tobaccos make me wish I were a Brit.

Pipe Used: Stanwell, Stanwell and Stanwell

1 person found this review helpful.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (191)
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Tolerable

Nice meaty flakes that smell of uncased Burley in the pouch (bulk). The first time, this tobacco was quite moist and the defining taste was of a flowery perfume and a soapy finish. After a few weeks of drying, the burning qualities are highly improved and a light Burley nuttiness appears while the aforementioned taste of perfume comes and goes. It packs and burns perfectly, no bite and no gurgling, this tobacco would be perfect if it were unscented.

1 person found this review helpful.

Burner Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Burner (8)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

This is a fine Virginia burley flake with a subtle hint of Lakeland flavouring. I cannot understand the people who give this wonderful tobacco a one star review simply because they don't like Lakeland flavouring – Which in this is so subtle as to make it scarcely noticeable. Simply saying I don't like it is only a review of your personal proclivities not the tobacco itself. This is a solid three star blend which smokes cool and without bite, steamtrain puffing not withstanding. The Virginia base is rounded out nicely by the burley and the medium nicotine level combined with the luxurious texture of the smoke never fails to satisfy. If VABUR's are your thing and you aren't prejudiced against the merest hint of Lakeland flavouring, like some of the Pavlovian one star reviewers here, you will love this stuff.

1 person found this review helpful.

tavancleave Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tavancleave (8)
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I decided to try a tin of Best Brown #2 because it looked lonely on the shelf at the store. I recalled seeing the tin a number of times so I decided that I would give the good old college try. (I'm still a Master's Candidate.) In the car on the way home I opened the tin so I could smell my investment. To my suprise it smelled like soap and flowers. After I got home I loaded up my Large Ben Wade and started smoking. The tobacco burned well and did not bite my tongue. From beginning to the end it tasted like soap and flowers. I was dissapointed but I wasn't ready to give up on it yet so I threw it in the car based on a suggestion of Steve Monjure and other well seasoned pipe smokers. After spending about a week in the car I tried it again. The soap and flowers taste had become a side note to the delicious tobacco.

It's worth a shot but beware the soap and flower taste will be in your pipe for the next 5 or 6 bowls.

Taste buds love it....your pipe will pay.

1 person found this review helpful.

BostonPipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BostonPipe (83)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Back to my "Gawith" run. After taking a short break from all the Gawith blends I have smoking and trying over the past several months, I decided to start back with this particular blend as a first time try.

Well, I was delighted. I grabbed a tin of this to try on a three-hour car ride to Connecticut to visit family over the weekend. What a nice trip down and back!

Easy pack in a old Charatan favorite, a couple of false-lights and tamps and I was off to some excellent, mesmerizing downtime.

The taste runs consistent the length of the bowl. It is a wonderful sweet, (throughout the background), smoke, creamy in texture and it burns to a coarse grey-white ash.

If I have any complaints, it is a tad moist when first opened. Next time I will air it out a little bit before smoking.

A very satisfying experience, highly recommend.

1 person found this review helpful.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (165)
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I had to wait several weeks and try a several times for this new blend to be posted, and other reviewers have beat me to a punch. Nevermind, after two full tins in a large bent Don Carlos, this is a good, trusty, but full Lakeland flake, almost all natural in my book.

I too like G&H flakes, including Brown Flake and Rum Flake. Best Brown no. 2 is very close to G&H's Brown flake (unscented) in my book, but not quite as robust in my opinion. Don't confuse the two, as some have. I don't really compare it much at all to the floral scented flakes (Ennerdale, Brown flake aromatic, or SG Best Brown, etc.), which have varying degrees of extra sweetness added.

This is just a tad, and I mean tad lighter than the full bodied G&H's Brown flake. It may have more portion of virginia than burley than in Brown flake, and has just a hint of sweetness more so.

Overall it starts creamy, builds by mid-bowl to full, and ends nice and round-like. Its sweetness may be just from the sweet virginias added. Any scenting is musty and minimal. It is earthy but a little sweet nonetheless. (It is not sweet in the sense of SG's Kendal Cream Flake.) It is not a light smoke by any means.

It smokes dry and steady. Easy to rub out (I do just a little). It feels like a good cigar in body (but no cigar leaf is added). It leaves a strong room aroma.

I can compare it most to Germain's Brown flake, but it is fuller than that (with a touch of sweetness). It also has some similarities to University flake but is fuller and better in my opinion.

I don't know whether I like Germain's Brown Flake(which can be smoked more as it is not as full), G&H's Brown flake unscented (which is even more robust), or this variation better (the mid-full ground). They are all variations on a theme of earthy, fuller flakes. Still less full than darker flakes. Highly recommended to fuller side flake lovers, va. or burley or both, but a little milder than most dark flakes. Not necessarily for those who prefer lighter or sweet golden virginia flakes.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
Medium Mild Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Finally! I have been waiting for some time to be able to review this tobacco and the wait is over. This is an incredible tobaccco from G&H. Rum flake is an all time favorite. They pulled off using a buttery rich burley to tame a nice sugary VA better than any others so far. Now I love the casing used in Rum Flake ( Maple sugar, rum, and a light smattering of the Lakeland florals in the bvack ground). But sometimes it seemed a bit too sweet. Enter Best Brown #2. This phenomenal flake is almost identical to Rum Flake minus the sweet topping. It's got the same musty richness with absolutely no tongue bite. This could be an all dayer for sure! It seems to smoke better in a larger bowl. The ending isn't real intense and it smokes all the way down to a dry ash. The Lakeland floral perfume is lightly used here, and you either love it or hate it. This flake does need some drying out time. A winner!

1 person found this review helpful.

Lazarus77 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lazarus77 (87)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Another premium tobacco from Gawith Hoggarth. Beautiful looking flakes, wonderful smell, easy to pack, burns easily, no tongue bite or harshness. Can be all day smoke. Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: 1 year

Purchased From:

Similar Blends: Best brown flakes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gladi8tor96 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gladi8tor96 (133)
Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable to Strong

Beautiful multicolored flake in the bag. Perfect moisture content. When sniffed I get earthy, bready, dark and deep fermentation (slightly sweet), with hints of slight tang. Didn't detect any floral notes right from the bag.

I was gifted this from my local tobacco shop during a pipe night. I just now have been well enough to give it a go. Rubs out easily and packs just fine. Took a bit of lights to get it going, but easy to keep lit (rubbed out) with slight tamping.

I'm not too familiar with burley and burley va mixtures. I've been trying my hand at them recently to get a grasp of what they are about. I think this is a fine example of what can happen when you blend those two tobaccos together. The smoke is plentiful and not too harsh. The VA's provide a very slight sweetness and tang while the Burley gives some nuttiness and maybe even some dark fruit notes, but ever so lightly. The two flavors balance each other nicely and create quite an enjoyable and satisfying smoke. The floral notes are there, but not in great supply. Just a hint here or there, which is fine by me as I don't care for too much floral of soap essence.

This is an interesting smoke and is quite enjoyable. It's probably not one I'll invest much money or time into, but it was a great experience along the way. I would recommend this blend for sure as it is high quality and satisfying.

Pipe Used: Corn Cob Anse

Age When Smoked: Unknown

Purchased From: Gifted

Similar Blends: Gawith, Hoggarth & Co. - Rum Flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Theosprey247 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Theosprey247 (69)
Medium Medium Medium Tolerable

Nice looking flakes that come in a baggie. Needs a little drying time (nothing like SG blends) or be prepared to relight your pipe several times. But once it gets going.....Oh boy is it great. Gently smoking this blend gives a sweetness like no other blend I've tried before. The burleys provide the backbone and the floral topping hangs in the background and is barely noticeable. In fact, sometimes I don't even notice it. Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mawnan Smiff Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mawnan Smiff (28)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

One of the beauties of buying loose tobacco is that one can buy a small 25g sampler pack if one is unsure whether they will like the blend or not. Thus my last telephone order from consisted of several, one of which was G&H Best Brown #2.

Upon opening up the bag I was presented with a few mid brown straggly flakes that look somewhat 'distressed'. I stuck my nose in there expecting the famous/infamous Lakeland essence but was quite surprised to find it was not there at all! What was there was a gentle aroma of slightly sweet hay with perhaps a little tartness. It reminded me of the smell of Cabbie's Mixture but there the similarity ended.

I rubbed out the rather long damaged flakes on a tray to allow some air drying time. Once rubbed out the shreds were still somewhat chunky, not the finer cut that I prefer so therefore perhaps not best in a small bowled pipe.

I loaded up a Hardcastle bent bulldog, filled up a glass of cold Bishop's Finger and sat back to see how I fared with this new to me blend.

Lighting was surprisingly easy considering the coarseness of the cut and that it had only aired for a few minutes. As in the packet note, the actual smoke was devoid of any Lakeland essence which was nice. I don't actually mind it if its lightly applied but would rather not have it, preferring to taste pure tobacco instead. This like most blends is best sipped, then the sweet flavours come to the fore though here I did find them to be rather muted but still very pleasurable. Hints of molasses and honey came through with just a smidgen of spiciness thrown in for good measure.

I found this to be a pleasantly mild blend but one that was lacking something. I can't quite put my finger on it but it wasn't as 'wholesome' as some reviews had led me to believe it would be. Perhaps I might have better luck with Sam Gawith's Best Brown Flake which I believe is a straight Virginia.

Writing this review I am smoking it after much air drying in a large Captain Black egg and still find it to be lacking. Not quite bland but rather dull.

Certainly not a completely duff smoke, many folks love the stuff but for this smoker one that I may try again but wouldn't be too bothered if I never saw it again.

Pipe Used: Hardcastle bent bulldog/Captain Black egg.

Age When Smoked: Fresh.

Purchased From:

Similar Blends: A very mild version of Cabbie's Mixture (though of course without the perique) though more in the aroma than the taste..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Corvus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Corvus (36)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

A nice tin with a white painted lid applied with a muted but stately sticker. The flakes are long in the English style and of moderate thickness but shaggy and stringy, folded over and stored in plastic. The flakes are primarily chocolate brown with a mat look and have a textured feel, almost gritty. Coming in the bag is important because it is more easily climate controlled. It is somewhat moist and benefits from a little drying. Tin note is straight straw, not even as rich as a fresher hay.

The topping on this muted and lovely. Is it an aromatic? I think by some standards it is, but is not an American or Danish style aro. I think Gawith calls it scented, and that is probably most apt. It is floral, and I tend to pick out rose hips most, but it is fundamentally a Lakeland flavor. It is present throughout the bowl and doesn't fade but never overpowers. The exception is on the match when it is pretty strong. I must note that the first tin was much more strongly flavored especially when first opened but did diminish over time. Please note I slayed Ennerdale on its indiscriminate overuse of flavoring and that is Lakeland plus almond and other components.

This is a VaBur, but burley predominates. This includes the burley hit on the light, that almost sulfurous burst that I have compared to some root vegetables, and the drying and ashy taste lower in the bowl and even a carrot-like quality, but never unpleasant. You also get the dry cool smokes and great tobacco taste. The Va supplies a bit of constant low-level sweetness that very infrequently manifests a quick burst of buttery goodness. Overall a really nice marriage of flavors that really do meld. My final impression is of a soft smoke, velvety, but never weak. Finishes as a talc-like gray ash.

More realistically a 3.5 star blend that is subject to increase, but one that also has some inconsistencies in terms of flavoring. This I think is a virtue in general. Large scale productions are based on consistency over quality, dependent on processing a tobacco within an inch of its life or over. Artisan and hand crafted products can't achieve that and should not.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Past Master Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Past Master (20)
Medium Medium Medium Tolerable

Tastes like soap. (Hmm. My original three word review was rejected, because it must be at least 25 words in length. So, let me add some words to this review.) Let's see. How's this? This tobacco, unlike any of the other many, many dozens that I have tried and smoked over the years, TASTES LIKE SOAP. There. That oughta do it.

Pipe Used: Two different Petersons

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Major on-line pipe & tobacco retailer.

Similar Blends: Lifebouy, or maybe Camay, but stronger than Ivory., Sorry. I don't mean to sound like a smart-aleck. But, all I can think of when I smoke this is, "Soap shavings." It is amazing. I've never experienced this before. Has anyone else found the taste of this stuff to be like soap?, I just read through some of the other reviews of Best Brown #2, and I discovered that 20 other reviewers used the words "soap" and/or "soapy" to describe this tobacco. So, apparently I am not imagining things..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

L'Italiano Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
L'Italiano (170)
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

My review is about the bulk version. Best Brown # 2 is a tasty semi – aromatic mixture. Certainly in this blend there is flavoring, and you can notice the particular seasoning typical of Gawith, Hoggarth & Co, a sort of identification mark. Really I don’t know if it is “floral essences” but it is good. Ultimately this tobacco is an interesting Virginia Burley mixture slightly flavored. In my personal system rating (from 1 to 10) my score is 9 and three stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

22yrsonthepipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
22yrsonthepipe (22)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I'd like to clear something up. BB#2 is not a floral or soapy tobacco. However occasionally you'll get a tin which is tainted by whatever was processed before it. BB#2 seems to be the only GH tin that has this problem. Most of the time BB#2 is just plain straight untopped tobacco with that vinegarish tang to it which is just a natural byproduct of fermented baccy.

Out of about 8 tins, I have had 2 'tainted' tins, which have a really nice violet/lavender thing going on. I prefer the tainted stuff myself and in fact I only order it in the hopes that it will be, because I only have access to the tinned GH stuff and none of those have the lakeland florals. The tainted stuff gets 4 stars. The usual unscented BB#2 is very high quality but actually quite boring without the floral, and is what I am rating.

I agree with the reviewer who said it's like bob's choc without the choc.

I find it strange that people detect 'floral' toppings or 'soap' in Ennerdale or Rum flake. Ennerdale tastes like almonds and citrus fruits (like european pretzel) and rum flake tastes like....rum. I constantly see people referring to Ennerdale as the 'quintessential' lakeland floral/soap when it has no floral/perfume toppings whatsoever. None of the Samuel Gawith tins have it either - except arguably Kendal Cream Flake. I just put it down to lack of experience. If you've ever tried Condor, you'll know what 'lakeland soap' is without a shadow of a doubt.

My theory is that what people are describing as 'soapy' or floral is just the effect of GH using natural essential oils and real plants as opposed to artificial flavorings. Case in point GH top black cherry uses real cherries - I even got a whole cherry stone in one of my tins! Bob's choc has actual cocoa. SG 1792 has bits of fibre in it from the tonquin beans. People are not used to it, and they are expecting soap, so they taste soap. It's a psychological thing.

Pipe Used: Briar/Meer

Age When Smoked: New

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CoolPilot Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CoolPilot (69)
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Lakeland flavour is disgusting. What a bad idea to buy GH tobacco tins, this is the second one I must give away after the Rum Flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Vladlon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Vladlon (6)
Mild Mild Mild Tolerable

So far not so good - hot burning (burley?), not so pleasant aroma...maybe this is a pipe, but i didn't think so....still keep trying...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (320)
Medium to Strong Medium Medium Tolerable

look, I don't like "Lakeland Floral" and this has it. The tobacco is of good quality but in my opinion is ruined by the "soap" flavor. I admit that the "LF" is very light, but even when I eat one piece of caviar it still tastes like rotten fish to me!

12/16/2014- I've been reading some of the reviews about " is there or isn't there" " Lakeland Floral " in this blend . I'm convinced that it's all dependent on when your particular tin was run. Reviewer " 22yrsonthepipe " states that he got it in two of eight tins. This clearly indicates that there is a quality control problem of not fully cleaning the equipment after a "Lakeland run". Buyer Beware !

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lvpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lvpipe (13)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I smoked this for the first time from a bulk package over a year old. Moisture level was perfect, it rubbed out nicely. The soapy taste is present especially at first, not in a bad way. Midbowl that is reduced. I usually smoke unflavored virginias but found this a very nice change without getting into aromatics. I can see where this could be an all day smoke for people who like a medium bodied Va. The tobacco flavor is predominant throughout making it a good change of pace or crossover for aromatic smokers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.