|Reviewed By||Date||Rating||Strength||Flavoring||Taste||Room Note|
|Kilmarnock Piper (233)||Medium||None Detected||Medium||Pleasant|
Most definitely a McClelland, similar to the Matured Virginia series. My tin has lots of age on it: 1994. The broken flake is a mix of red and dark Virginia, and is quite attractive. The old familiar McClelland aroma is there in spades. At the first light, on my first bowl, I thought I detected Perique, but after a few more bowls am pretty sure this is just the sharpness of the aged Virginia. And a nice, mellow aged Virginia it is! (Yes, that seems like a contradiction, sharp and mellow, but keep reading, I'll try to explain.) This hits me better than any McClelland I've had since Ashton Brindle Flake. There seems to be a tug of war going on between astringency on the inhale and mellowness on the exhale. I like it. You know, right before I typed that last sentence, I dropped my pipe and wasted a whole bowl! Not what you want to have happen while typing a review. Well, let me just reload...Ah yes, there we go. As I said, kind of sharp on the first light, but this settles down and mellows out. The flavors are typical of aged McClelland Virginia, but this one has a perfect balance and body. There is also a perfect balance between spicy, sour, and sweet. No bite whatsoever, even though I have both sipped and pushed it a little harder. What makes me sad is that I will have a hard time finding another tin of this so well aged, though the blend is still in production. I say blend, but something tells me this might be single-crop, with part of it stoved? Not sure. I've been hitting this stuff pretty hard since I popped the tin, but will try to save some for special occasions. This may be one of the best, at least with 16 years on it.
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