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A beautifully aged Red Virginia like no other. Brimming with rich, mellow flavor as only nature can provide. A special allotment of prime 2000 crop North Carolina leaf has been secured for our discriminating pipe smokers. The softest, most enjoyable straight Virginia we've ever smoked. With a light vacuum seal, the tobacco will continue to mellow with age.

Blend TypeStraight Virginia
Packaging50g Tin
ProductionNo longer in production
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Mild, Mild to Medium
None Detected
Room Note

Favorite Of 3 Users

24 reviews
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Vrikkian Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Vrikkian (8)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

This is a Virginia tobacco. Virginia, Virginia, Virginia. If you don't like what a red VA flake brings to the table (natural sweetness but a nice robust flavor) then look elsewhere. If you are someone who loves a "pure" tobacco with no casing, no artificial flavor, and nothing but the leaf from the harvest then keep reading!

A little backstory: I am still a "novice" pipesmoker. Even though I've been smoking off-and-on (3-5 bowls/week) for 2 years, I still don't have the cadence of the hobby down yet. Sometimes my bowls are too light, sometimes I don't tamp enough, sometimes I smoke too hot. Therefore, I can easily think that a tobacco is crap when in reality it's my fault because I've not mastered all the facets of the routine yet.

HOWEVER, Red Ribbon by McCranie's is one of the very few blends (even though this is, as stated, not a blend of anything more than VA ribbon cut, a tin, and a lid) that I have loved every second of from the false light to the heel. I've gone through an entire tin in 3 weeks (which is a lot for me), and... just wow. I don't know if luck makes me smoke this tobacco correctly, but it's simply incredible. It's a fresh, clean, but strong flavor. It's sweet, sometimes a little fruity, but tasty. It'll bite if you smoke it too fast, but just slow down and you'll be rewarded.

McC's Red Ribbon is now my Go To Virginia blend. Pairing it with me Go To English (Kramer's Father Dempsey) means that if I'm ever stranded on a desert island I'll know what to bring with me.

Pipe Used: Ivarrson Stanwell (Dark Tanned)

Age When Smoked: 13 years

Purchased From: McCranies website

5 people found this review helpful.

hiplainsdrifter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hiplainsdrifter (9)
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Pleasant

Wow. This tobacco is... I am speechless. Huge tin note, dominated by a sweet vinegar aroma. I would imagine the vinegar smell dissapates with age. Room note is really good, I have had compliments from friends who are non-smokers and hate smoking in general. Taste is massive, sweet dried cherry or cranberry notes. A little tongue bite if you really lay the hammer down but totally manageable. Hands down the best tobacco I have smoked, at least for my tastes. The only thing I have tried that is even comparable is Macbaren HH Mature VA, although I like Red Ribbon a lot more. I really love the fact that this phenomenal smoke is not a blend, rather one variety of VA from one crop. Wow.

4 people found this review helpful.

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

This is a soft one with loads of taste and produces clouds of wonderful smoke. It smokes best nice and dry. I am not normally a fan of straight Red Virginia's. This may be the one that changes all that! Nuff said!

4 people found this review helpful.

Denevei Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Denevei (58)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

There are two versions of McCranie's 1996 Virginia available, a flake and a ribbon. When I first began smoking the two blends I preferred the flake, but have come to more appreciate the Ribbon. It's the most popular of the tinned blends sold at McCranie's, and for good reason. Among McCranie's regulars who are Virginia smokers, once they try this blend they rarely smoke anything else. I certainly have no plans of my own tobacco shelf ever going without it. When you pop open a tin of Red Ribbon you are treated to a wonderful, enticing Virginia sweet aroma. There are darker and lighter ribbons of tobacco, but I've yet to find a stem or poorly cut leaf. This is a quality tobacco. It's slightly on the moist side, and might need a slight drying before smoking, depending upon personal preference. I like to open the tin and let it air for an hour or two before smoking it. The tobacco lights easily, and smokes smooth from the first puff. As you get deeper into the bowl the complexities and subtleties of the blend really become pronounced. As a new product, it's not yet had time to age in the tin, but I feel certain that time will treat Red Ribbon well, allowing it to age like a fine wine. Like the Red Flake, there is a creamy, vanilla-like taste to the smoke which is what I seek. Red Ribbon is a Virginia lover's pleasure. I asked Todd McCranie what his favorite blend is and he replied, without hesitation, that this is it. I then asked him what he smokes when he runs out of Red Ribbon, to which he replied, with a smile, that he never runs out.

4 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

I was wondering when the 2000 version of the McCranie's famous Red Ribbon would be available for review. I am most certainly a fan of the '83 and '96 versions and was interested to try the latest.

This is certainly the mildest of the three. Not as sweet as the '96 version and lacking the strength of both of its predecessors, this one reminded me of McClelland's 5100 and a few of the McClelland's Christmas Cheer vintages.

Easy to pack and light, RR 2000 will appeal to those who enjoy lighter fare. I prefer a little more strength and flavor... But, the quality of the leaf and flavor of the Virginias employed is certainly in keeping with this famous series.

4 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

The red Virginia is richly tangy ripe dark fruit sweet with a touch of earth and sugar. Not much complexity present. No chance of bite or harshness. The nic-hit is rather mild. Burns cool, clean and even at a reasonable pace with a very consistent, smooth flavor. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and needs an average number of relights. has a pleasant after taste, and can be an all day smoke. I did notice a little vinegar at the start, but it disappeared after just a few puffs. For some reason, it seemed a little mellower and a shade sweeter than the vintage 2000 flake version.

3 people found this review helpful.

M.Toney Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
M.Toney (59)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Sampled from a 2007 vintage tin. The tin aroma...I sniffed a spicy, clove/nutmeg sort of smell. The topping wasn't so much as to totally block the smell of Red Virginia. The ready rubbed flakes are mostly very dark brown with a small amount of medium brown. It packs easily and burns well.

The topping wasn't all that noticeable to me. The smoke is as light as a feather and almost as smooth as air itself with the unique, sweet taste & flavor of Red Virginia coming through. The smoke is totally biteless and remains mild, cool & tasty to the end of the bowl.

McClelland is the blender of this blend and they churn out a lot of good doubt. I also liked McClelland's Reserve 1928 from Tinderbox. I think it was mostly Red Virginia as well and was the sweetest tobacco I ever smoked. Therefore, IMHO, McCrannies Red Ribbon 2000 merits four **s!

2 people found this review helpful.

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

So is this what happens to McClellands Red Cake when it ages? Same mottled ribbon, but leans heavily to dark browns, much more so than Red Cake. Almost smells like a bit of stoved in with the mellow sweet Virginia. Came a little wet but didn't need too much drying time. This was a gift from a friend (thanks, friend!).

Deeper and richer than the oldest Red Cake I've ever smoked (about 5 years old - not much younger than this one, but this was tinned from a 14 year old crop, of course) and contains a different kind of sweetness. Where RC is "sweetly sweet" and tangy, this one has a mellow, deep kind of sweetness. Hard to describe - best I can say is that RC is more of a noticeable sweetness while RR is more subtle. I guess a comparison is the only way to get the picture! This is a fair bit more complex of the two as well, and with no nicotine overload. As much as I enjoy RC, this blend is considerably superior to my tastebuds. Makes me want to continue to age the RC that is in my cellar. McClellands is the master of Virginias in my book, and this is one that anyone that enjoys such blends to sample.

Pipe Used: meerschaum and morta

Age When Smoked: 6 years

1 person found this review helpful.

russ Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
russ (27)
Very Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I have been through multiple tins of the 1983---Once again the 2000 does not disappoint. If I were sent to a deserted island, and had ONLY one choice of tobaccos----with the exception of pipe choices---wait a minute---I would smoke this stuff in snything I could make into a pipe---thats how much I like it it. One of the best plain, straight up tobaccos a man could put in a pipe------------simply the best. I love this stuff. Its by far one of the best tobaccos I have ever put in a pipe. McCranies Red Ribbon, or their flake---folks it doesn't get any better than this.

1 person found this review helpful.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (165)
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

This is an excellent red ribbon vintage. Tastes sort of like a cherry blend without the cherries.

Sweeter and milder than its flake brother. Not as robust as the 1983 vintage but still worthy of the red ribbon label.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

Not enough taste for me. If I were to smoke anything on this order, it would be McClelland's blending virginia.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dubinthedam Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dubinthedam (133)
Mild Very Mild Medium Pleasant

I loved this..what a nice surprise, soft, fruity, sweet with a little ketchup, quality leaf. Super easy to smoke Red Virgina, my tin was gone in a week.

Nobody has rated this review yet.