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An uncut plug of rich old-fashioned Virginia to slice and rub out.

BrandWessex
Blend TypeUnknown
ContentsVirginia
FlavoringCoffee
CutPlug
Packagingtin
CountryUnknown
ProductionUnknown
Product Image
Strength
Mild to Medium, Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 2 Users

3.2
16 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
4
3 star:
11
2 star:
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DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (557)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Nice solid brick of lighter color and a "package" nose of basic Virginia. I sliced it top to bottom (narrow side) rather than side to side. Then I folded and stuffed for best results.

The taste of this was of basic Virginia, heavy on the brighter versions, but not overly citrusy. The write up here on TR is that it is flavored with coffee. Well, I can't confirm that but neither can I deny it, as there is an underlying dark spicy flavor that would indicate some measure of red Virginia or possibly a top dressing. This blend wasn't all high notes. In fact, it mostly covered the midrange - very basic with nothing too assertive. As with all the Wessex Virginias I've smoked, this is a good blend but misses greatness by a wide margin, IMHO. Perfectly serviceable but nothing I feel the need to cellar. Good thing, too, based on the cost and the lack of availability. If you enjoy the ritual of working with plugs and want a very congenial Virginia that doesn't go too far in any direction, this one is for you. I'm going to cellar my other 2 bricks and revisit in a few years.

Pipe Used: Meerschaum, morta and a BST briar

Age When Smoked: 1 year

3 people found this review helpful.

fr_tom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fr_tom (136)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is my first plug experience. I sliced it on the short end - about 1/8 in thick with a sharp pocket knife on a cutting board and rubbed it out.

This is a very good Virginia. It is mellow and sweet. I got very little tart and no citrus. It was a satisfying smoke but not complex - just a basic Virginia. If this were cheaper I would probably buy this. It is about $70 a lb, and that is a little rich for my budget. I am glad to have tried the plug, and am enjoying it.

Pipe Used: briars, Kirsten

Age When Smoked: 10 months

Purchased From: gift from friend

1 person found this review helpful.

ROTHNH Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ROTHNH (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Pretty innocuous. I mean, look at it.

Wessex Gold Brick is a bit more than a 2 X 2 inch, sort of grayish-brown block with specks of gold and black wrapped in a piece of cellophane. Wrapped like dates at the supermarket -- Not the most graceful presentation, to say the least. OK, lets slice this sucker open. {Sniff, sniff} ... smells like tobacco, maybe a bit of spice ... but where the hell is the coffee?

Oh man, maybe I made a mistake on this. It's expensive. It feels dry. Oh well, let's find a sharp enough knife to open this and peel a couple slices off this sucker. Hmm... slices easily enough, actually seems more moist than it looks. {Chop, chop} ... I like how it cube cuts too... Wow, there is actually are going to be quite a few slices from this 100 gram plug... OK, well now it feels too moist, so lets let it dry 10-15 minutes. La La La. There -- that's about right.

Time to load these cubes in this very pretty Astley Charatan Make quarter bent straight grain dublin panel (the conical bowl should make any cube cut virgina worth it's salt sing)! Packin' it in there tightly; sprinklin' the small crumbled remnants on top and it's time to light this stuff and get this show on the road!

Hmm ... puffs pre-light = still no coffee. But I do like the taste. Char light puffs up the cubes a bit, true light went well and this stuff is burning evenly. There's a little nuttiness (maybe a touch of quality burley?) that compliments the sweetness of the virginias nicely. Also a bit of cream (yes, cream without the coffee). It is burning evenly and cool, leaving a powdery white ash. No goop, no bite, and no complexity to peak of. Damn tasty though. Vitamin N, at the level I experience from most virginia leaves, is higher than expected, which is fine by me.

This Gold Brick (WGB) is burning very slowly -- this Astley is a solid Group 5, and any cube-cut virginia flake won't ever win a race to the bottom of the bowl, but still, this WGB is burning slower than most of my other virginia blends. Not a bad thing.

It's made in Germany, but reminds me of good old time USA virginia. Looks and reminds me a bit of Day's Work (do they still make that stuff?) but IIRC, Day's Work chew was much more moist. Must be the cellophane wrapper.

This stuff grows on you. Sort of like a plain girl you knew in high school that turned out to be interesting and fun to spend time with. Recommended. This could be an all day smoke.

But if someone finds the coffee, let me know what they did with it, OK?

1 person found this review helpful.

ken_mays Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ken_mays (8)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The first couple of bowls of this were very pleasant. Bite-free and mild, while delivering the true Virginia flake taste. It reminded me of Orlik's Golden Sliced without so many bright notes.

I'm about 5 bowls into it since then, and haven't been able to recapture that same flavor. It's unoffensive and well-behaved but it lacks any flavor that will make this a staple in my cellar.

Not a bad all-day smoke for the more sophisticated palates.

1 person found this review helpful.

TK Pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TK Pipe (101)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Wessex Gold Brick … A 100 Gram (brick) plug of tobacco, that must have been too moist, because straight from the package light-up was almost impossible, so for that reason I dried it out some and found the following smokes much less troublesome. As for handling the plug, I just sliced up a nice pile and put in an old tobacco tin and smoked it like any other broken flake, IMO it's well worth the extra effort.

They call this tobacco a Virginia plug, but it is unlike any so-called straight Va. I've tried before; I taste something more than straight Virginia, I would guess it probably has some burley and maybe some Orientals in its mix, at least to some degree. By the way, that is not a complaint; this stuff IMHO is quite good, smooth with little change from light-up to ashes, with no bite even at a increased puffing rate and very satisfying in the Nic. department. Kind of like a especially good Carter Hall, only a bowl of GB seems to last a lot longer.

GB has a pretty much an all tobacco taste, that is just mild enough that I can enjoy a bowl or three at any time of the day. GB should satisfy most of the non-aro smokers out there, that find enjoyment in old time American Virginia style smokes, and of all things it took a German company to produce it. If this sounds like your kind of smoke, I would highly recommend you give this blend a try. I'm hooked.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

StylesSharpman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StylesSharpman (24)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Pretty tasty not very sweet but more smokey with grass like flavors. I couldn't smoke this all the time but i like to have it around for those time I want smoething light and dry.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (187)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

I had wanted to try Wessex Gold Brick for a while now and finally found an online vendor with it in stock. A nice 100gm brick of mostly medium brown and some golden Virginia in a cellophane wrap. Don't be put off by the price. 100 grams of this lasts a while. Not much of an aroma upon opening the wrap, just the smell of basic tobacco - and mild at that. Preparing the plug was relatively easy. Not as dense as Peterson's Perfect Plug and not as loose as Pease's Jack Knife Plug. Easy to prepare with a Swiss Army pocket knife. The pieces rub out very readily and loading was easy. First light revealed a subtle sweetness, reminiscent of vanilla (although I don't think any is present), and that is why I labeled the flavoring as extremely mild. This may be due to the leaf itself and not from any detectable casing, although upon inspection of the cut plug, it was slightly shiny in spots (perhaps from a light casing as I read it is prepared with molasses). It only required the occasional relight along the way. It burned cool, evenly, and without bite. The taste reminds me of Limerick without the Perique and Lakeland-like essence.

As Virginias go this was very tasty, being medium in both taste and strength. I have also smoked the Wessex Brigade Campaign Dark Flake and the Wessex Brown Virginia Slice. The Brown Slice was more Danish in taste and a tad sweeter, and the Dark Flake more traditional meaning no casing although I detected a smidgen of molasses in Dark Flake. Gold Brick was entirely different. Simple, yet very enjoyable with a natural sweetness present throughout the smoke. I liked it very much and will be ordering more. Gold Brick is great for when I want something with a little sweetness to just smoke without much thought. Gold Brick does build in intensity as the bowl progresses, but is never over the top or bitter. When I want the taste of fig/prune and sweetness, Brown Flake serves me well. For something more stout in a Virginia, Dark Flake is my choice. Although Gold Brick is the mildest of the three, I am nonetheless very pleased with this addition to the Wessex line. Three great Virginias to rotate through.

A nice, straight forward, unadulterated tobacco. No Virginia tang in this one. Although present, you can just taste the molasses, adding a subtle sweetness that is quite enjoyable. In a league with both Dunhill Flake and Pease's Union Square, but better. For a plug, way better than Jack Knife Plug. Gold Brick seems to smoke best when dried out to the consistency of brittle flakes. I prepare a half dozen or so flakes and place them in an old Wessex tin and let them dry out to brittleness. The flavor really comes out and their is never a bite not does it smoke hot. You get the benefit of the Virginia and the molasses - very old-timey in taste and room note.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Crigs Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Crigs (13)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

The only drawback is the plug itself. And understand, to me it is not, but to others it is. This plug to me is easy to deal with, but I like plugs. Most folks will find this difficult to cut and light. Once it is going though, it delivers a true VA taste experience. A good old fashioned plug that if treated right will treat you right.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (260)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Upon opening the foil pouch (not the tin as advertised), you find a 2"x3"x2" tightly pressed brick with a pleasing aroma. I was able to peel off the moist, pliable layers since I normally don't rub out ~ blends but it became quite messy. This technique also made uniform packing within a bowl and from bowl to bowl difficult but I don't have the patience or time for alot of prep work. Therefore, initial lighting was sometimes difficult and relighting sometimes needed but that was due to my decision. If you will devote more time to the preparation, you may enjoy the rather sweet taste of a cool,dry smoke without a hint of bite. For me, it also left one of the better true tobacco aftertastes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This was the first plug I ever tried, and I had a lot of fun with it. I still have a little cube left, and am putting off smoking it to see what age can do for it. It's good, natural and to me rather full Virginia, and my only complaint is that it bit me pretty bad. Granted, I last smoked it a year ago and may be more tolerant by now, but somehow feel that it's one of those tobaccos that just doesn't agree with my mouth. I liked the complex range of flavors, though-it gives an impression of different things at different times, like raisins, figs, wine, grass/hay, etc. When I smoke that last bit, I'll come back to this review and see if I can add that last star-it might deserve it.

When I finally smoked that last bit, it did not bite. I don't know if aging did it or if I have at last acquired leathertongue!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kg0mz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kg0mz (54)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

There is much to be said about set and setting when trying a tobacco for the first time.

The Set: my granddad, a blacksmith and later an engineer for the Katy railroad, always had plug tobacco. It fascinated me as did his ritual for preparing the tobacco for use. I waited over 50 years before fiddling with a plug, but I associate them with good things. The setting: my wife fixed baked catfish as it is eaten in SE Asia. Oh, and the Jayhawks clobbered MU this afternoon, sweet revenge.

I used a large kitchen knife to slice a too thick (3.5mm +/-) flake from the plug. The plug was bone dry, or so I thought, and I was surprised to find the flake had a perfect moisture content. It was pliable, and it had a pleasantly sweet aroma of Va tobacco. I didn't dry it at all. I rubbed it out, sort of, to a chunky mix. Into a VA-only pipe she goes, well, about one-half of the flake.

Lighting was simple. Not as sweet as FVF or CVP, but the strength was in that class. It burned cool and dry. I expected some moisture buildup, but it just wasn't there. This is a very smooth VA, creamy and cleanly pleasant on the palate. Hay, wood and leather. Nutty, at times. I wondered if this is what LGF would be like without the perique. Consistent top to bottom. Not the sweet/tart range of FVF. Earthy. I downed a bottle of Irish style lager with it. The tobacco seemed to sweeten after finishing the bottle of Rogue. I think the Islay single malt mentioned below would be a better fit.

For me, this is pipe tobacco as it should to be enjoyed.

07/27/09 UPDATE: I am revising some of my reviews. I have given out more 4 star ratings than anything else. That practice is probably not helping. So, I am reducing GB to 3 stars, not because I like it less than I did before, but because I am limiting 4 stars to fewer than 25% of all my reviews. One day I may use the 4 star rating to designate my top five.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarChef Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarChef (100)
★★★☆
Mild Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

If you're looking for instant gratification, sorry, wrong number. If, on the other hand, you're blessed with some patience, alot of matches and armed with a very, very sharp knife, you're in for a treat. Slice into thin flakes, then dice. Dry it out. Dry it out some more. When you think it's dry enough...dry it out some more. Gravity feed into a narrow gauge bowl...press down very lightly. Light up. Enjoy. You'll have to get used to frequent relights, but this one doesn't suffer from them, nor will your mouth. No bite and no ashy flavors. Some deeper flavors of caramel develop as do brighter notes...a nicely balanced indulgence. Yummy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PeterD Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PeterD (77)
★★★★
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

As a matured Virginia Plug smoker for 45 years I was a bit hesitant to try this plug. However, I have been more than surprised by this rather plain, somewhat unassuming Virginia Plug.

The description is semi-accurate. "Rich" I don't taste but "old-fashioned" is "dead-on". There was a plug tobacco I smoked back in the early 60's from Europe that was very similar to this and was brought to me by a family friend who was there monthly for many years. I can't recall the name though... wish I could.

While this plug is not in the "matured Virginia" catagory, it does have a taste and aroma that bespeaks of simpler times and care-free puffing. Initailly, I found the plug straight-forward...but, with more time in smoking this, it has its own set of complex overtones that are very appealing; yet still straight-forward.

It is very "earthy"... I taste the subtleties, but don't have to get involved in considering complexities. Puff and enjoy at work and play. I especially enjoy this in the evening in a group 5 straight billiard with a single malt on the "smokey/peaty" side.

I highly recommend this plug!

...a pipe is to be savored.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

loosewatches Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
loosewatches (108)
★★☆☆
Extremely Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I do love plugs. I do love Virginias. I had high hopes for this, and although they are not completely dashed, I'm having some trouble with this lovely looking, tightly pressed brick. Mine is quite dry, despite the well sealed package. No problem. I sliced some fairly thick flakes and rubbed them out to a rather C&D consistency. So far, so good. Packing was easy. Lighting was not difficult, although roast tongue is not one of my favorite flavors. After a false light, tamp and second match, I took two draws and spent five minutes remembering my many Mac Baren trials.

I set the pipe aside and forgot about it for two days. Two more attempts made me wonder why I tried this first smoke in the A.M. (or at all, for that matter)

Then, once upon an early evening, I managed a Very careful lighting technique and enjoyed a pretty mild incarnation of Briar Fox, though it was many moons from the smooth true wonder of that fine blend. It is much sharper, not even close in richness, and, still to bitey, for me.

It is not a bad smoke, really, I think I'm just to picky. If only it had more nicotineous nutriment and a tongue friendly attitude, I might have liked it more. I'm glad however, that I bought only 100 grams. Should last me quite a while. But, don't listen to me, my expertice lies elsewhere. Try it yourself. It might just yank your crank. I'll stick with the Fox.

May the smoke be with you.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ErnieQ Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ErnieQ (6)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Wessex Gold Brick comes in the form of a 2 x 3 x 2" rectangular plug. It has a sweet woodsy aroma in the foil pouch

I happen to be the proud owner of an old fashioned cast iron tobacco plug cutter. I was able to easily cut the plug into thin slices not unlike the ones we buy commercially (Erinmore, Edgeworth etc...)

Once the cutting (A daunting task without a cutter or VERY sharp knife) is done, the tobacco rubs out and packs quite easily

One thorough light with a wooden match and a careful tamp or two, and this brown and golden brown flecked tobacco is on it's way. Perfect moisture level.

This tobacco delivers medium bodied sweet nutty smoke from beginning to end. If you cut the plug thick and rub it out into a "wide flakey" texture, it burns cool and smooth. Though it doesn't say so on the package, I believe a moderate amount of Burley is present evidenced by the sweet nutty undertones.

If you don't mind a little careful and involved preparation, this is a real treat. Sweet and nutty with a slightly bright tangy overtone typical of well matured Virginias.

I still like Wessex Burley Flake more than this, but Gold Brick is my second in command

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (137)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is very close to C&D's Briar Fox, just a thicker cake.

Must be sliced cross-wise with a knife and cut up into little squares. Thick and does not rub well. Inconvenient. Burns well once started.

An interesting woodsy, sweet and sour taste. Ready to puff right out of the pack. Not hot or bitey but not for all.

I see some brights, reds, and a little stoved. Puffed 15 bowls in a new Brigham's lowlander from the RTDA in N.O. Hope I can find my pipe high and dry in my "old" home now. Should have evacuated with it. I still have a 10 bowl plug sealed in a jar at home.

Enjoy these blends. You never know when they will be your last treat or luxury. Those were the days. But I'll be back. Enjoy this as mana.

Nobody has rated this review yet.