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Iwan Ries


Light flake. Similar to Dunhill Light Flake.

Notes: Blended for IRC By Orlik/ Peter Stokkebye per the gentlemen at the Iwan Ries store.

BrandIwan Ries
Blended ByOrlik
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Iwan Ries
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Mild to Medium
None Detected
Room Note
Pleasant, Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 2 Users

27 reviews
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Arizona George Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arizona George (3)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

This is a very, very good mild Virginia- great taste and aroma, but a bit light on nicotine for me. Since I have it and it is good, I'm going mix it about 1 to 1 with a bit of HH Old Dark Fired and a pinch of Latakia- I expect a pretty awesome result! Anyway- if you are looking for a light Virginia, get you some, there's not much better!

Pipe Used: Calabash

Age When Smoked: new

Purchased From: Iwan Ries

3 people found this review helpful.

Lowland Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lowland Piper (12)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I don't give out 4 stars easily. I think this one really deserves it though in the VA flake category.

I really enjoyed the old Dunhill Light Flake and recently bought a couple ounces of this to try. In my opinion, IRC VA Flake is closer to that old blend than the current Dunhill Flake. Dunhill Flake is great tobacco too, but I think it is a lot different now in the new incarnation -- more medium and not as "light."

IRC VA Flake has a touch of topping that just smells so yummy. It's not strong, just a touch to add to the pleasure of the experience, especially while preparing the pipe and during the first part of the smoke.

IRC VA Flake is in large slices you can pull apart to the desired amount. I enjoy seeing my flake tobacco in intact slices instead of broken flake. The tobacco has a light, straight-forward VA tobacco flavor with mild sweetness. It's good and flavorful from start to finish. The smell reminds of fig newton cookies in the pouch. It also burns really nice and even with a little drying before hand.

2 people found this review helpful.

DrumsAndBeer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrumsAndBeer (203)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Iwan Ries Virginia Flake is a variegated combination of black, red and bright colored Virginia leaf. The pouch note is sweet and fruity with a touch of dry grassiness, the flakes come perfectly moisturized and ready to smoke. The flavor is mild with a light sweet oat cereal taste. The finish has a bright lemon citrus note and a touch of pepper. Mid to end bowl flavors are a delicate balance of citrus, spice and wood smoke.

This is a very good flake, but it requires some finesse. For instance, the first few times I smoked this I rubbed the flakes out. As a result, I found the flavor to be sharp and cigarette like. On the other hand, the fold and stuff method dramatically improved the overall flavor, subtleties and performance of this tobacco. The results between preparation methods were night and day.

IRC Flake smokes smooth and cool with absolutely no bite. Comparatively, the flavor and nuances are somewhere between that of Golden Sliced & Dunhill Flake; it's not as sweet & spicy as Golden Sliced or as rich as the current version of Dunhill Flake.

An excellent straight Virginia flake for those that appreciate a flavorful, milder smoke.

1 person found this review helpful.

WillBrown Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WillBrown (108)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

First off, I really like the foil packed pouch this flake comes in. The tobacco wasn't overly wet, nor overly dry—just pack and light! I love that. A flake that's ready to go. As far as the tobacco itself goes, I liked its toastiness. It was relatively smooth, was perhaps a wee bit acrid or bitter, but some sweetness showed through, too. It reminded me somewhat of Stokkebye's Luxury Navy Flake, and, indeed, this flake is produced by the same people. All in all, this is a good flake.

Next, I'd like to say, if you're a pipe enthusiast, Iwan Reiss, in Chicago, is worth a visit. Tucked next to the L, up a long flight of dark steps, you'll find a one of a kind pipe shop. They've got just about everything a pipe smoker can dream of there. So, if you're anything like me—that is, a person who actually enjoys visiting legendary pipe stores (thus far, I've only been to: Boswells and Kramers, more are sure to follow), scope out Iwan Reiss.

Keep on piping!

Pipe Used: Nording freehand

Age When Smoked: ?

Purchased From: Iwan Reiss

Similar Blends: Stokkebye's Luxury Navy Flake.

1 person found this review helpful.

HokieGeek Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
HokieGeek (23)
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Excellent! This is the first straight Virginia I've smoked, and it was wonderful and delicious. The note of the flake in the IRC bag was intoxicating and really excited me to this tobacco. The smoke was smooth, had this sweet taste to it and never once had any bite. I am buying a pound of this and aging it. I can't wait to keep smoking this for the next few years!

1 person found this review helpful.

Taste Buds Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Taste Buds (65)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a very good bulk flake. It comes in long strips and packaged in a foil pouch, which I found very appealing, as you can reseal the pouch to maintain freshness. I detect a touch of casing, which is both fruity and tart, which adds to the overall experience. I tore off a piece and rolled it into a ball, then stuffed it into the bowl. It took a match easily and stayed lit with ease. Compared to Sutliffe 507-C, which is on the milder side, I would rate this as medium in strength. This burns slowly and cool from start to finish with the aforementioned fruity and tart casing there in every puff. A European style flake for sure, with the quality evident in both appearance and taste.

Purchased From: Iwan Ries

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Vladlon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Vladlon (6)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I've sampled this tobacco by recommendation of more skillful pipe- smokers than i am and.....not impressed so much that they are....the tobacco is very sensitive to the rhythm or let me say to velocity of smoking....when you are little bit speed up - a taste is gone...maybe it's more suite for experienced smokers...go figure:(

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Hemlock Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hemlock (60)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

a good VA. Fully rubbed in your dedicated VA pipe it will not stray from what VA smokers enjoy. burns clean, and develops through the bowl. Once in the zone, might pick up hints of citrus, and that good ole' VA essence.... No bite, and burns on its' own when fully rubbed. this is good tobacco and should not take any less than a four star since is a pure VA flake that represents... it isn't unique or special, but it is worth smoking, and if this is all there is to pipe tobacco, I wouldn't complain.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

chgo.piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
chgo.piper (37)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Smooth virginia tobacco taste. Nothing fancy. If you're a no-nonsense smoker looking for a good old straight and satisfying virginia flake for a reasonable price, look no further...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

My sample has a minty smell in the bag; like tic-tacs, and this put me off at first, but I can't detect the scent once the tobacco is lit-it's just a good bulk natural Virginia flake. The burning qualities seem a little uneven, but that's no big deal. Simple, plain Virginia along the lines of Stokkebye Luxury Navy Flake. Good price in bulk as well.

1-23-10 I had been using this mainly for blending, but tonight, after a steak dinner and a cheap yet tasty bottle of South African wine, decided to pack up my Savinelli Capri with this blend for the last pipe (?) of the night. Aging in a jar for a year has treated this flake well. The first third of the bowl showed up this tobacco's weaknesses: uneven burn, hard to get lit. Granted, I did not rub it out. But then it really opened up. The Savinelli is not a big pipe, but the bowl smoked for a solid hour. In the "home stretch," I was getting a sublime pure Virginia taste from small sips. I had been pushing the pipe harder earlier on, yet despite this abuse, I experienced no bite and the pipe did not overheat. At the end, I was treated to pure Virginia nirvana; it is the only tobacco that makes you want to smoke the ashes! Speaking of ashes, this tobacco does not seem to leave much in the way of ashes. Therefore, with all due pomp and circumstance, I give to you, IRC flake, your fourth and final star.

1-24-11 Back to three stars. I must have been pretty drunk that night. I'm not saying it's bad, just does not make that level of four-star tobacco. Like, would I put this on the level of FVF or Escudo? Has a strange smell as it ages, almost like fish or the beach, but it is not offensive, and this is still a good smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Duke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Duke (41)
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This review is based on IRC Virginian Flake and not IRC Slices; the latter is listed as containing perique.

Well this is a great Virginian flake and quite similar to Dunhills Light Flake in many aspects. The pouch aroma, the rub result, the smoking quality and the flavor are quite close. Exact? Maybe not, but that sweet Virginian tang is there and that aroma, delightful. Fully rubbed and allowed to lightly dry and this stuff smokes itself, leaving me satisfied. If there is a topping it is not burdensome, never crowding the tobacco, but rather supporting the smoke. It softly strengthens as the bowl progresses. Some may say this smoke is one dimensional, that its uninteresting, but the old familiar isnt a bad thing. I cannot not imagine a time or place that I would find this tobacco unappealing. Ive been sampling a lot of Virginians, and maybe one out of ten had me pining for more, this stuff has me hooked.

Edit: 7/6/09 More nicotene than I expected, but nice. And I can't say there is no Perique, again, not a bad thing. This may not have dazzeling tin art or boutique glamour, but it is really, really good.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

AcworthAl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
AcworthAl (38)
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

IRC?s Virginia Flake is the first flake I have smoked. I purchased some after reading other reviews here. As it is a flake, it is a bit more work to get smoke ready, but it is really well worth the effort. This is magnificent and the taste is astounding. IRC?s Virginia Flake is now one of my favorites.

4-09-09 Update. This stuff smokes for days. Yesterday I loaded my pipe for the hour drive home; it was a Savinelli Antique Shell (a $40.00 pipe with a balsa filter). I lit the pipe at 4PM; I finally dumped out a little bit of ash at 6PM. I am not kidding a 2-hour smoke, had to relight twice.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

Outstanding Virginia, one of the best out there. The large flakes are a pleasure to see, smell and handle. The only similarity with Dunhill Light Flake lies in their color (not in the size or smell, and certainly not in the taste). If we had to compare it, I'd put it next to Capstan Medium (next and above). Same tanginess, similar hay taste, a bit more sweet and with more depth.

Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

½ bowl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
½ bowl (99)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

IRC's Virginia Flake has a bright, racy Virginia taste with good volume and a fair nicotine hit. It is redolent of musty new-mown hay. An untoasted tobacco, it is slightly sweet, as from golden honey, and mildly tangy, as from the zest of a citrus rind. But mainly, it's just good old Virginia tobacco taste that gets toastier as you smoke it.

It makes a good all day smoke because it smokes dryly, is mellow and refreshing to the palate, and is well behaved in the bowl whether folded or rubbed. It folds compliantly for stuffing in a bowl -- that's the way I handle it. But it rubs-out wonderfully if that's what you prefer. I get best results in a briar with a small diameter bowl, but it's great to sip from a gourd calabash too.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Unfortunately, IRC Virginia Flake burned hot to me. I enjoyed the flavor to some extent, but prefer my Virginias to be a bit more sweet and this one had a tartness that I was not particularly enamored with.

I received this as a gift that came in one of those patented IRC "Perma Fresh" pouches. The flakes are long and just one rubbed out strip filled a group-4 sized bowl. I smoked very slowly in an attempt to keep the heat down, but just couldn't do so successfully.

This one does have a dose of strength, which I did enjoy. Still, just too rough around the edges and not sweet enough for this cowboy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Eric Cioe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eric Cioe (37)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

When I went to Iwan Ries asking for a flake to try and get used to the technique, this is what they gave me. I like this blend quite a bit, though I don't like the size of the slices compared to the small stuff in tins (Peterson's, Penzanze, whatever) - makes for more prep work before you smoke. I find most flakes best when not rubbed out at all; I usually just fold one of them in thirds and stuff that into my pipe. With this cut, that just isn't practical.

Anyway, this blend is a good light VA. If you don't go into it expecting something it isn't (which was hard for me when I got it a year and a half ago, as I was mostly smoking Balkans then), then you will probably be pleasantly surprised.

Somewhat recommended, and probably something I'll buy again once I get done experimenting with some others. This could be a light flake of choice, but I'm not convinced just yet that this is the best.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tavancleave Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tavancleave (8)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

I picked up a two-ounce sample of this Virginia flake on my first trip to Iwan Ries and Co. in Chicago, IL. Most college students spend spring break in Florida but, I spent my in the area of Indiana called ?The Region?. Upon the suggestion of a fellow smoker in Knoxville, TN I decided to make a trip to this famous establishment. The shop was awesome. Alas, back to the tobacco, this flake is very familiar to Mac Baren Virginia Flake. Normally a tobacco like this would burn up my mouth but this one is not a tongue burner. It is very light and pleasant unlike the Mac Baren offering and at for the price it might be worth investing the money to get some weight. If you get a chance to visit this shop buy this tobacco. You won?t be disappointed.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

joeljcj2 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
joeljcj2 (10)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

mar 2015 either the new irc flake has lost flavor or my tastes are demanding a richer smoke


2005: i have smoked this flake, off and on , for nearly 25 years. it is cut similar to dunhill flake,and is perhaps richer, but not as oily or rich or fully flavored as marlin flake. in the ddunhill occasionally i taste a touch of soap---none in the irc flake. (i don't know who makes this tobacco--i think it's danish) it begins a bit bright, perhaps a touch of lemon but develops into a nice, toasted taste and aroma, which last through the entire pipe. it lights like a flake, but, if rubbed and packed properly ,stays lit with an even cool burn. it does not seem very stoved ( if at all) and seems to have no added flavoring. i find it one of the few i can smoke several bowls in a row, and i also find it one of the few that will tolerate being relit an hour or so later.i am not loyal--i smoke it as only one of a large number i keep open ( 10 or so), but i always come back to irc flake. joeljcj2

Nobody has rated this review yet.