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Two dark stoved Virginias and one wide cut lemon Virginia expertly blended with Cajun Black. This blend is one of a kind, ethereally smoky, deeply rich and incredibly complex. Virginia's natural sweetness cooled by Cajun Black's fire-curing and Perique style processing.

Notes: Cajun Black is the first new pipe tabacco component in more than forty years. Cajun Black derives from Virginia seed brought to southern Kentucky long ago to grow in that fertile, heavy soil where it was crossbred to create dark fire-cured tobacco. It is stalk-cut and hung over slow-burning hardwood slabs in a three to five step smoking process until it turns a deep chocolate color and achieves its distinctive smoky flavor.

BrandMcClelland
Blended ByMcClelland Tobacco Company
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
ContentsVirginia
FlavoringNone
CutCoarse Cut
Packaging50g Tin
CountryUS
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
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Strength
Mild
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Mild to Medium
Room Note
Pleasant

Favorite Of 3 Users

2.7
28 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
7
3 star:
14
2 star:
6
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1
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Jacinto Cupboard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jacinto Cupboard (180)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Very Full Tolerable

What a peculiar tobacco this is. The tin note immediately makes the stoved Virginia obvious, and there is the signature dried fruits aroma of McC's conditioned blends. I picked up an odd strawberry jam aroma as well. There is nothing on the nose that reminded me of perique.

Visually, this is a short coarse cut, predominantly black with 10% or so of yellow leaf.

I found this tobacco chameleon like in its complexity; each puff giving off new and different impressions. It is sweet, sour, salty and pungent, with a tarry, smoky quality that reminded me more of English ropes than it did of anything from St James Parish.

It burns beautifully and somewhat quickly.

This is clearly a first class tobacco, but even writing as an aficionado of stoved Virginias, which I think is the core of this blend, I am hesitant to recommend it because this is so singular in its nature that one will simply have to try it and find out. This might be worth looking at for people who enjoy the complexities and richness of dark ropes and twists but find the hassle in the bowl too much.

I also thought this stronger than most reviewers have, but then my tastes have evolved to prefer lighter fare.

3 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (839)
★★★☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

This is the last of the Royal Cajuns for me, and the least tastebud-provoking. It's a fine tasting, if overly mild blend for me, but it definitely does not ring my chimes the way the other two did, particularly Ebony. Dark seems more complex to me but Ebony is more flavorful.

This is a rough chop-cut tobacco, mostly black in color but with a bit of lemon VA thrown in. The taste of this resembles Ebony much more than Dark but is considerably milder and harder to extract. It came at very nearly the proper moisture level in the tin but it did benefit from a couple of minutes of drying time. Still, I had some minor difficulties keeping this lit. As do most good VA tobaccos, it improved down the bowl but never really reached that level of taste nirvana that I experience with Ebony. This one is just too mild for me and I had to work too hard to find the flavor. But if you like a nice mild tobacco and you want just a bit of that deep dark roast coffee flavor with your Virginia tobacco, give this one a try. If you find you like the flavor but find it just a bit lacking in "oomph", go straight to Royal Cajun Ebony.

3 people found this review helpful.

arpie55 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
arpie55 (64)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

i like this! i found it to be quite flavorful and unique. rich, smooth, and satisfying. the tin aroma and the color are wonderful, it packs and burns with ease, and solicits many compliments about how good it smells burning. as we all know, this is blended with the "new perique" due to the la. st. james parrish hardships, while i am not so sure it is too similar to the original perique (which i like very much), i would accept it as an alternative on it's own merit any day. i applaud the group that had the foresight to develop this. i will return to this and i will try the other two in the series.

01/2016 as an additional note, I found this to be even more pleasant when put through a tobacco grinder to loosen up and tear some of the larger chunks, it helped bring out more flavor and aided in burn. Good made better.

Pipe Used: Briar and meer

Age When Smoked: 1 year in tin

Purchased From: Tobaccopipes.com

2 people found this review helpful.

Alhaji Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alhaji (33)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

When I reviewed Royal Cajun Ebony (RCE) on the 5th of October this year I gave it a major thumbs up. At the time, I had not yet tried the Royal Cajun Special (RCS) nor the Royal Cajun Dark (RCD). I am smoking RCS now and find it quite delicious also albeit a tad stronger.

The Royal Cajuns (RCs) are a completely different tasting blend from the normal tobaccos we smoke in terms of appearance (real nice darkish), richness and flavour/taste. Don't get me wrong; there are many top class tobaccos out there but the flavour of the RCs is quite unique.

This is as creamy and spicy sweet as RCE but a little less so; not sure why it is less spicy that RCE, but perhaps because it has less Perique than RCE or none at all. Or does it? To my taste, RCE has a slight edge over this (RCS) and since I gave RCE a straight four star, I will rate this as a four, less half. But I can see RCS joining RCE as part of my regular rotation.

Age When Smoked: New

1 person found this review helpful.

larryjly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
larryjly (2)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Very Mild Pleasant

I opened the tin and sniffed a fruity smell which was not unpleasant. Upon lighting I was waiting for "something" to happen, and continued to do so throughout the bowl. Coming from liking English blends to this provided a nice change of pace. It definitely had a Perique heritage. It's a nice smoke, nothing (for me)to write home about..I tried it and that's that.

1 person found this review helpful.

Skando Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skando (187)
★★★☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is my second Royal Cajun, after the Dark (could not put hands on the Ebony).

Basically, we are in the same territory (how could it be different ?), just some small differences: a dash of lemon Virginia is thrown in the dark base, offering fruity tones. Possibly this is even milder than the Dark, but neverthess satisfactory and refreshing the same way.

Regarding me, my preference still goes to the Dark.

The Royal Cajun line seems to me something able to encompass the pipsters' different tastes, and that's the geniality of the blender.

1 person found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
★★☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

One has to give credit to McClelland for thinking outside the box with the creation of this series. This dark, rich, rough cut tobacco comes ready to pack with a slightly smokey, chocolate (not aromatic) tin note. At first light the taste is very mild, slightly sweet and somewhat monotone. Sadly, that was the profile for the majority of the bowl. It's not bad tobacco, just boring. I wasn't looking for a "new" perique, but I had hoped that the process would bring about more complex flavors. If you are a fan of very mild, straight forward tobacco, this might be worth a try.

1 person found this review helpful.

zulujerk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zulujerk (145)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant to Tolerable

I haven't been looking forward to this review. With every subsequent bowl smoked, I knew that my review would be ravaging. I hesitate only because I admire McClelland, particularly for their insistence on experimenting. There are only so many blenders as bold...actually, there are none, I apologize. I crave different tastes, and when I scour the interwebs in search of something new, I am inevitably led back to that familiar profile of a whale taking in a breath of fresh air. In my mind, GL Pease exists to refine, and McClelland exists to create. Royal Cajun is squarely within that tradition, and I confess, I feel a bit guilty for hating the stuff.

"Cajun Black." I remember reading about this a few years back, a bit intrigued, imagining that I would get around to it sooner or later. That time has come, with a tin dated 2006--that's a good four years of age. Reading the verbose insert provided by McClelland, my first instinct was to imagine a cross between Latakia and Perique, a smokey, fermented condiment soon to line the shelves of tobacconists and their mason jars of blending components...how can this fail?

My only reservation going in was the notice that these blends lack oomph. I like a strong tobacco, and have gone far enough to add Perique and sliced rope as necessary to toughen up a blend. Nothing is safe, from Frog Morton to Blue Note. This tends to change the taste profile, obviously, but it extends the range of tobaccos that I may sample, which my curiosity appreciates. So, I stand ready to amend this concoction if necessary.

Prodding though the contents in the tin, the tobaccos are course, largely black-- the stoved Virginias and Cajun Black indistinguishable, and a bit of that light, lemon Virginia, sparingly evident. The classic McClelland Virginia scent pervades throughout (I do enjoy the novelty, I admit).

The smoke, honestly, doesn't deliver the promise of new flavor. The blend is decent enough, but I don't seem to taste anything that new or that different. There's a hint of what might be Perique, and some smokey notes, but taken together, it's nothing distinct enough to warrant jubilation.

I understand now why the blend is so light...to pair this with a strong Virginia, or a robust Burley would diminish what little individuality the blender claims that this leaf may possess. And so you are condemned to these mild smokes, or some oft hope that the next batch might use a stronger strain of Virginia. Either way, the future is bleak, as perhaps obvious by the lack of other blenders who have taken to the cause of "Cajun Black". But McClelland is a tasteful company that could probably make a pile of crap at least halfway palatable, which is clear in the simple instance of Special, which should ideally fail to offend most people.

Forty years, that's how long it's been since a new tobacco component emerged-- according to McClelland. I like the desire to branch out, but I think we can do better.

For my part, I'll take a pinch of Perique and snap my fingers.

One and a half of Five.

1 person found this review helpful.

Sinister Topiary Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sinister Topiary (84)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

There's something not right about this blend.

It has that wonderful cajun black flavor -- that unique dark, sweet subtlety -- but it's not as smooth and creamy as the other Royal Cajuns. I taste something in this blend that tastes off to me, like capers in a chocolate mousse, or tomato juice in a fine port. I see why some claim to taste something citrusy in this one, but I'm reminded more of solvent. Indeed this one takes my breathe away -- and not in a good way: unlike any other blend I know, this one dries out my throat and lungs.

This blend does not work for me. Cajun Black is a new process, so perhaps McClelland is experimenting with its possibilities. According to my tastebuds this experiment failed.

I again applaud McClelland for their Royal Cajuns, but I'm very glad I didn't try this one first because I doubt I would have tried the others, and that would have been most unfortunate since RCE and RCD -- especially RCD! my #1 'baccy -- are extraordinary. Though I generally love McClelland's blends, I cannot in good conscience give this blend more than one star.

Others obviously enjoy it, and I can understand why, and even agree with many of their conclusions; but, ultimately, I don't like sage in my flan.

UPDATE 10/28/10: My opinion of this blend hasn't changed over the course of the year.

However, I discovered that this blend works beautifully as a condiment for high-key blends that would benefit from a helping of something darker. For instance, I do a 50-50 mix of this with Ashton's Winding Road and it works beautifully.

Now I find myself ordering more tins of this one star blend just to have around as a great condiment for other blends. Go figure.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tripjoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tripjoker (65)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Tolerable

This deserves an A for effort and a D for execution. The smoke is very mild, nothing like the much loved Perique that they claim to dopple.

No real vitamin N, and it does tend to bite when I work it to get a little flavor. Not my thing, but by all means try it yourself.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Well, I was enticed by the description to order a tin of this, and was not disappointed. True, it is not exactly my style. I would like to get my hands on some of the Cajun Black blending element and try blending it myself with a nice, up front Virginia flake. I hate to admit it, but I like to inhale my Virginia once in a while and feel that nice "bite," and this one is definately not an inhaler! But it is a uniquely nuanced blend, and going on quality alone might be a four star tobacco for some. I found it a bit cloying. I think I will enjoy this as an occasional treat along the lines of Just For Him's "Shortcut To Mushrooms;" the two are more similar in their feel than in their taste.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
★★★☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is a coarse, wide cut blend of mainly blacks with bits of light VA that result in a cool smoke without any bite. I still prefer the burn rate of my VA flakes without rubout for a long, slow smoke. Moisture content was fine from the tin and the McClelland ketchup smell barely noticeable. Although this tastes like a mild aromatic to me, I believe its from the tobaccos and processing and no condensation or contamination of the briars was experienced. However, this one has little nicotine kick and although tasty, I'm looking for higher octane.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bayoupipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bayoupipe (4)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium to Full Very Pleasant

"Special" is the first Royal Cajun I've tried. I should say that I am a McClelland fan, and I do not get the "tomato" smell or flavor that people often reference. Maybe my taste buds are different. That being said, I really enjoyed my first bowl. I smoked it in a corncob, and it compares favorably with many VaPers (even though Cajun Black is not technically Perique) that I have tried. Upon the first taste, I noticed a slight sweetness with a citrus overtone. About a third of the way down the bowl the flavor became more rich and Perique-like. By the bottom of the bowl, I would almost swear I tasted Cavendish...must just be the blend. I believe this tobacco would be even better with some age. It's worth cellaring for a year or so to see. This is a pleasant, medium flavored tobacco that is not heavy or overpowering in any way. The smoke itself is full and pleasing to both the eye and the palate. For VaPer fans, I would recommend it without hesitation.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Fumeur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fumeur (6)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable

I enjoyed this quite a bit. The flavor is different from other tobaccos, and strikes me as unique. I would describe it as sweet, smoky, a bit citrusy, and a bit peppery. It's not a strong flavor, and it won't overpower you. Quite enjoyable.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Dottle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Dottle (162)
★★★☆
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I would describe RCS as a light aromatic that is smooth, mild and sweet, i.e., it under powers rather than overpowers. I experienced no bite nor did I get much of a nic kick that I like in my tobaccos. The Cajun Black tobacco is touted by McClelland as ?the first new type of leaf processing in 40 years.? I won?t doubt its word but I found it ever so reminiscent of a couple of sweet, black cavendish processed blends my local tobacconist suggested to me and that I smoked in my younger years or that you may very well have smoked in your neophyte pipe smoking years. However, the coarse cut of the tobaccos in RCS is atypical of the longer cuts found in many cavendish blends. RCS is another of those blends that I will defer to newbies as I?m sure they will like it. On the other hand, I suspect that many veteran pipe smokers, who prefer a more natural tobacco taste and more strength, will find Royal Cajun Special not so special in short order.

A cigarette is to be smoked. A cigar is to be enjoyed. A pipe is to be savored.

I rate this blend 8.0 out of 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Satc001 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Satc001 (66)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is my least favorite of the series. The Cajun Black doesn't seem to have the prominence in this blend that it enjoys in the other two. Overall, this blend is sweet and mild, reminding me quite a lot of a high quality Half and Half. The room note is delightful and the tobacco seems to burn well. It has the typical bite expected from a Virginia concoction and is rather smooth on the palate. However, this one lacks any depth and its flavor, although not unpleasant, just doesn't make me want to keep puffing. I found that this blend was really average and while I don't consider this a bad tobacco, I certainly would recommend the other members of this series first.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (180)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I was eager to test this new Cajun Black tobacco, as I very much enjoy Perique and Virginia tobaccos. This was a unique blend, much of the background flavor of Perique without the peppery frontal taste. I happen to like the pepper in Perique so I was a little disappointed, this is however a good blend, with a rather smoky taste.

It packed and lit well and would be good for those wanting to try something different, I will finish the tin and might try the other two Royal Cajun blends, but this will not be a regular smoke for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
★★★☆
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Opening the tin reveals a mostly black tobacco with about 10% lighter leaf. The cut is short, but somewhat coarse, promising a cool burn. The aroma reminds me of black cavendish, with traces of chocolate and prunes. That combination also shows up in GLP Cumberland, which also uses a dark-fired Burley (although not fermented). The tobacco was somewhat moist for me, and very slow to air out. Is there PG present?

The flavor is slightly sweet, with mildly smokey overtones, and generally mild in character. It does burn cool and dry, but I find it less spicy and interesting than I prefer. Good for a starter, or in the afternoon, but too mild for evening.

A good choice for all-day if you find the flavor rewarding. I will try the others in the trilogy to see if they pique my tastebuds.

Nobody has rated this review yet.