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Straight Red Virginia from the Old Belt. A single crop allotment that is simply the best. 2008 Crop from North Carolina.

Notes: Fourth version of the Red Ribbon imprint. Previous versions used crops of 1983, 1996, and the 2000 vintages.

Blended ByMcClelland
Manufactured ByMcClelland
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
Packaging50g Tin
ProductionCurrently available
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Favorite Of 2 Users

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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2231)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

The red Virginia is richly tangy ripe dark fruit sweet with a touch of earth and sugar. Won't bite or get harsh, and has no dull moments. The nic-hit is mild. Burns cool, clean and even at a reasonable pace with a consistent smooth, creamy flavor. Leaves just a little moisture at the finish, and needs an average number of relights. Can be an all day smoke, and has a pleasant after taste.


7 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1826)
Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

I finally popped a tin of my McCranie's 2008 Red Ribbon a few months ago. Not at all like the original, although I am not sure it was meant to be. And by the way, this is not McClelland's 5100 as some have indicated. This leaf is from a single crop in 2008 and 5100 combines crops of the same red Virginia. Still, I do admit the taste was very similar, and like 5100, developed some sweet depth the farther down the bowl one smokes. Not much strength though, and I perked mine up by cutting it with some strong Burley and finished up the tin that way.


6 people found this review helpful.

Bluesmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bluesmoke (75)
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Very Pleasant

I was gifted a tin of this and Wow, this is really nice. I found a wonderful sweet grassy/earthy aroma from the tin and after letting it dry a little it loaded just fine, took the match well and remained lit just about to the end. I personally don't think a little dottle in the bottom of the bowl is a problem at all. This was mostly singular in flavor, but it burned so cooly, and with just a bit of tang on the tongue, even a tickle was produced through nasal exhalation. Mediumish bodied and mediumish in flavor, this made for a burning of 25 minutes with pure delight, and yes it burned quickly for me. I must try their flakes now. Very nice ribbon. TYLFYG

4 people found this review helpful.

Young Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Young Piper (302)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Pipestud is absolutely correct in that If you contact Todd and ask about the contents he will tell you that RR and Red Flake contain red Virginias from a specific crop like Christmas Cheer unlike 5100 which contains tobacco from several crops. This is what makes RR special in my book, the taste is extremely rich and although monochromatic will change in toastyness as you get further down the bowl. Tin note is classic McClelland vinegar, ketchup, Red Man chewing tobacco etc. and makes me salivate, a true sign of the deliciousness that awaits :-) I have always much preferred the Red Ribbon and Red Flake over the regular McClelland red Virginia offerings since the aging and top shelf crops make them a very special smoke I reserve for Holidays and am willing to pay a little more for the McCranie Virginia's. If you haven't had the pleasure of trying either the 2008 or other years offerings I suggest you hunt some down on Ebay or from the McCranie's store, you'll be in for a treat! I consider the Red Ribbon and Red Flake tins to be a connoisseur's delight much like a bottle of red wine, the older the better (if you have enough willpower to keep yourself from opening a cellared tin)...

3 people found this review helpful.

Oldbelt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Oldbelt (8)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Everything a Virginia should be. Mild, sweet, complex as the bowl burns down. This is a single crop tobacco taken from fields near where I live. McClelland makes this for McCrannies and there is none like it. There are similar tobaccos to this but not quite. If you have never had the pleasure of enjoying a good Va. This is it.

Pipe Used: Ascorti

Age When Smoked: 6

Purchased From: McCrannies

2 people found this review helpful.

Puff..puff..puff Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Puff..puff..puff (5)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

This is wonderful smooth, sweet, red Virginia. Great stuff. But let me give you a tip. This is actually McClelland #5100 tinned by McClelland and branded as McCranies for them. Save yourself a bunch of money and get the 5100. I have smoked the McCranies 1996 Red Ribbon with a second following bowl of 5100 and the only difference is that the 18 year old McCrannies was a little smoother which you would expect from an aged tobacco.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: 18 years

Purchased From: EBay

Similar Blends: mcClelland 5100.

2 people found this review helpful.

guitar2mw Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
guitar2mw (92)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I was gifted a tin of this wonderful stuff by a good friend. It is a straight-forward Virginia with an absolutely brilliant flavor. Upon opening the tin, I was greeted with the vinegar/ketchup smell that dark VA's possess. It had a hint of nuttiness to it as well which I enjoyed and found different than most other VA's. It comes in a semi-broken flake, which is at just the right moisture right out of the tin. It rubs out easily with no fuss. I grabbed one of my dedicated straight VA pipes - a Tim Thorpe tomato with a Cumberland stem - and packed a bowl. Since I rubbed it out well, I used the three-step packing method and it packed easily.

Lighting only took 3 tries (counting one false light) and I was off and running. The flavor is superb with this blend, offering up nothing more than a straight VA flavor. It is a monochromatic smoke, but it's a GOOD monochromatic smoke. I don't tire of the flavor like many other flakes. It has a sweet, full-bodied flavor with earthier notes. It is a great change from the citrus/hay/grass taste of other flakes, and certainly more filling. It has a decent amount of Vitamin N as well, because I can actually feel it without inhaling. To me, this is like a good dark lager beer or red ale. I highly recommend any and all VA smokers to try this blend. It is a great change of pace!

Pipe Used: Tim Thorpe tomato

Age When Smoked: Several months

Purchased From: Gifted by a friend

1 person found this review helpful.

Lawyertodd Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lawyertodd (6)
Extremely Strong Very Strong Very Full Tolerable

As I'm no fan of straight Virginias, I smoke them from time to time just to remind myself why I prefer English, Balkans and Orientals. But I enjoyed this. Heavy-duty appearance of Lady N, yet didn't knock me as flat as Ed Burak's Scottish Ribbon used to, when I used to think I'd need CPR after a bowl of his SR.

Pipe Used: Who can remember? I have too many.

Purchased From: McCranie's

1 person found this review helpful.

Riff Raff Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Riff Raff (5)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I first had this when in the McCranie's shop in Charlotte. You can tell that this blend was made at McClelland's. It has that distinctive aroma, but not as powerful as the McClelland blends.

This is a sweet and spicy smoke. The sweetness of the Virginias really come through and the spiciness while faint, is present. As stated before, this isn't a complex smoke. But in this case, it is a good thing. The mouth-feel gives me sort of the sensation that a cinnamon hard candy does after finishing it. I am almost through my second tin of this blend and am thankful I have one more in the cellar. I will be buying more to age. I can only imagine this getting even better with some years on it.

Pipe Used: Mastro de Paja, MM Cob, Tinskey

Age When Smoked: 2 years

Purchased From: McCranies

1 person found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (28472)
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant

Love it fresh or with age best straight virginia blend, peerless by far. When I run out of this it will be like loosing a good friend. Sugary, sharp, tangy, bowl progresses all the way to the bottom of the bowl making me want to pack another as soon as it goes out. Clean finish with a great flavor left on the palate.

Pipe Used: Castello sea rocks, cobs, various briars

Age When Smoked: Fresh and aged

Purchased From: Mccranies

Similar Blends: Peerless by far, similar to christmas cheer alone..

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