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Iwan Ries


An all light leaf Burley blend with the subtle taste and aroma of vanilla. A cool smoking treat everyone will love!

BrandIwan Ries
Manufactured BySutliff Tobacco Company
Blend TypeAromatic
Packaging50g Pouch
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Iwan Ries
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15 reviews
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2144)
Mild Medium Mild Very Pleasant

Strictly for the smoker who likes a mild vanilla taste with a light spice hit. The nutty, earthy, molasses sweet burley is sublimated by the topping, but it will peek out at times, particularly near the finish. Burns slightly fast, cool and clean with a smooth, consistent flavor. Needs an average number of relights, and leaves some moisture at the bottom of the bowl. No bite, almost no nicotine. The after taste and room notes are pleasant, but very short lived. An all day work and play smoke that also makes a decent mixer.

4 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (833)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Walnut brown somewhat thick ribbons with lots of chunks. Nice, deep and rich tobacco aroma in the bag. This "review" is based on a 3 bowl sample from a friend and huge fan of the blend. And folks, 3 bowls does NOT make one an expert. The below thoughts are indicative of my impressions rather than the tobacco itself.

Vanilla Burley is an apt name for this, as it is burley front and center with a mild topnote of vanilla. The burley isn't particularly sweet but definitely reminds me of the tobacco in various OTC blends - a kind of deep, earthy taste rather than nutty. Fans of SWRA might enjoy this as a less-flavored alternative. I'm not sure how much this one costs but I'd buy it over most if not all of the current OTC's. It's only issue for me was the slight chemical note that illuminates its Sutliff heritage. In fact, I didn't even realize Sutliff made this one until I encountered that familiar chemical taste and looked up the blend here. But if you find that as offensive as I do, simply let this one dry out a bit more and most of it disappears. Iwan Ries has never been a staple of mine, as the ones I've smoked are outshone by their competition. This one is a nice example of a burley-forward sweet smoke that is not too aromatic. In fact, I wouldn't have minded a bit more vanilla but that probably would have amped up the synthetic, non-tobacco flavor. So I'll take it as it is. Not a game-changer, but a good OTC-style slightly aromatic blend that stays lit and smokes well (if a trifle quickly). If you're into OTC's, give this one a trial.

1 person found this review helpful.

ruffinogold Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ruffinogold (107)
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant

For me , China Black Fire Cured is the greatest American styled Aromatic by a light year . I am well into a tub of the china Black Vanilla and it is quite good . It isnt a total mind blower but it is a pleasant blend that is easy to enjoy . Being I'm an ARO Pro [ lol ] ... it lit well and smoked perfectly for me every time . I would like it to have a bit more Vanilla flavoring and " umph " , but it is fine . It is not overly flavored , so anyone could try a pouch for fun . The best part of this blend is the mouth feel ! It's very smooth and almost creamy . It's a very well done aro . It is the steamed American style ... so no bite , very little nicotine .. just an easy smoke that is super nice

Edit 8/14/17 The more I smoke this the more I like it . China Black Fired Cured is my Favorite American style aro by leaps and bounds and this one is creeping up there . It's so damn smooth an tastes better each time I smoke it which isnt infrequently . . I have to bump it to a 4 star blend

Pipe Used: Quite a few

Age When Smoked: fresh

Similar Blends: Other vanilla aros but this is smooter and creamier than most , though a bit on the light side.

1 person found this review helpful.

thedstnguishdgntlmn Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thedstnguishdgntlmn (360)
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Better than a drugstore aromatic but nothing great. It left a coating in my mouth I did not like. Smells good and that is it. there are better choices out there.

1 person found this review helpful.

Old Schoolr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old Schoolr (12)
Strong Mild Mild Pleasant

Another blend from the Altadis sampler; I haven't seen this one locally. I'm an aromatic fan & thought this might be a "light beer" version of MacBaren's Vanilla Cream Flake in a pouch form. Opening the pouch the tobacco wasn't the black & brown slightly sticky tobacco I expected after sampling other China Black blends. The stringy, brown tobacco was easy to pack & stayed light. I normally won't report on a blend until I've finished at least one purchase (tin or pouch). The exceptions to this rule have been Mixture 79 & China Black Vanilla Burley. The Mixture due to it's foulness but this blend I haven't finished for other reasons. Not that this is bad but I can't take it anymore. This blend gets bitter rather quickly regardless of the pipe I use or the packing method. The worst of it though, is that I get the most terrible heartburn while smoking this blend. I've tried it on an empty stomach, full stomach, late in the day or in the morning; I consistently get heartburn & run for a Pepcid. I guess it's something in my body chemistry. There isn't much in the way of flavor to this one either.

1 person found this review helpful.

renoguard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
renoguard (17)
Medium Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Pleasant

I have a little story about this stuff. When I First got married, I was between jobs. I was a cigarette smoker. I was out of money and cigarettes and had an old Dr. Grabow, which I can't remember where I got it. I was taking cigarette butts out of my ashtray and putting them into this pipe (YUK!!). After doing some odd jobs and some money, I decided to try some "real" tobacco (although I have dabbeled in it a few years before).

I went down to this local "stop and rob" and saw what they had. I saw China Black on sale 2 for the price of 1 and I figured that was a deal. I got them and enjoyed them. After finding steady work, I was trying different drugstore blends, and still smoking cigarettes. I smoked it here and there, trying different stuff. I was smoking other blends and didn't see China Black around anymore.

As of a few years ago, I totally gave up cigarettes (2001) and now smoke only pipes and cigars.

Just a couple of years ago, I found some of this stuff at a local smoke shop and tried it again. Perhaps I have become a bit of a snob, since I wasn't as impressed by it as I was at 23. It just wasn't what I remembered.

Anyway That's my little story, Hope you stayed awake.

This is a wannabe Cpt Black. I used to like this when I was low on cash and they had 2 for 1 sales on this. This was when I just started seriuos pipe smoking, in 1996 (although I dabbeled in it for several years prior).

It was difficult to keep lit. Most of the flavor was gone halfway down the bowl. WHAT WAS I THINKING!!??

1 person found this review helpful.

aadelma Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
aadelma (66)
Medium Medium Very Mild Pleasant

Yet another awful blend from the ALTADIS sampler. It starts out pleasant enough, but quickly induces tongue bite. By 1/2 bowl, I had to dump it out as it tasted like an ashtry. I've sampled about 1/2 dozen of the blends in the ALTADIS sampler and this will be the last as I've thrown the lot of them away. If this were the only type of tobacco available, I would give up smoking. The frustrating aspect is that many of them (IRC Blue, Fox & Hound, etc.) have the potential to be good, but the base tobaccos are of such poor quality that they are unsmokable. As the saying goes, you can't polish a turd.

1 person found this review helpful.

SopwithCamel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SopwithCamel (255)
Very Mild Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

This is pretty good for a vanilla pouch tobac. Behaves very well in the pipe. Nice aroma. Worth a shot if you are looking for an inexpensive vanilla blend.

1 person found this review helpful.

EconoPipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
EconoPipe (15)
Mild to Medium Extra Strong Overwhelming Tolerable

I was immediately drawn to the aroma of this vanilla as it was very noticeable through the wrapped pouch. I quicky bought it. At $4.19 a pouch it was a reasonably priced tobacco. But if you factor in that I got bought it in a buy on get one free double pack I got a screaming bargain. I went home with high hopes for this tobacco. After unsealing the pouch I was presented with a strong scent of vanilla that I would say definitely was bordering on overpowering. It smelled more like a air freshener than a pipe tobacco with not a hint of tobacco aroma to be found. Upon sticking my fingers in to pack my bowl I was greeted with a sopping wet mess. This has so much flavoring on it that it was actually sticky from the casing. Packing was a little hard due to the wetness. Lighting was just a plain chore. Due to the wetness, this took my several tries to light and a few relights to keep lit. The flavor was very overpowering. I set this one aside and finished one of the pouches over a 4 month period only smoking it occasionally to see if drying it out helped. Finally about the last quarter had about the correct moisture to it and it wasn?t half bad. Actually it was quite enjoyable. I looked at the other pouch of the two pack and it seems to have the same moisture level but you can still see the syrup like casing on the pouch like it was soaking in it which I am pretty sure it was. I have mixed feelings about this tobacco. I enjoyed it once it dried out a bit but without drying it out it is horrible. I would say I cannot recommend this as there are too many good Vanillas like Prince Albert Soft Vanilla, Captain Black White, Middleton?s Gold and Mild and even Smoker?s Pride Vanilla, that are consistently good right out of the pouch without the need to dry out or anything to do other than pack, lite, relax. Plus All but Captain Black White are cheaper, and easier to find too boot. If you like vanilla flavored pipe tobacco try one of my other recommendations if you didn?t already. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
Mild Very Strong Very Mild Tolerable

This was another blend I recieved in a free sample pack from this company. I have to say it still just isn't my style. The burley here is of the cheap kind that I abhor, and the flavoring was way too much. The relights have the typical cheap burley sourness to them and although it burned cooler than the other blends, it will still give your mouth blisters. It would help if you could dry this blend out, but it just ain't happenin'. If you want a better vanilla choice, try Captain Black White label. P.S. For a vanilla blend, the room note isn't very good!

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
Mild Medium Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

In the China Black series,this is my least favorite. I found it to be overly flavored with vanilla. Burley, of course, takes kindly to flavorings, and they sure gave the burley a bath with this blend.

Like the other CB's, this is a cool smoke that doesn't produce too much moisture. Your pipe will not be dry after the smoke, but you won't be able to swim down in there either.

Aromatic fans, rejoice, this should pop your corn!

1 person found this review helpful.

Dr.sadik Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.sadik (100)
Very Mild Mild to Medium Very Mild Pleasant

i purchased this blend at a buy one get one free kind of offering. being an aromatic smoker who wouldn't mind cheap tobacco i gave this one a go. the tobacco is one the dry side and the smell off the pouch is like smelling a custard powder right off the can. however, that dosent translate into the taste nor to the room note to be honest. it delivers an acceptable aroma with a taste that represent vanilla in a rough way (i tasted better!). it burns dry and clean with a little bit of harshness on the mouth. is it recommended well that is very subjective, as i cant tolerate mixture 79 yet many adore that blend. i would say that it wasn't a pleasurable journey but i gave it a 2 star for the burning quality and the cheap price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

MrPiper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
MrPiper (30)
Very Mild Strong Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

A low-lite falling into my waste basket from Iwan Ries & Co. called "China Black Vanilla." The tip off should have been the "Buy 1 Get 1 Free" pouches. 2 - 3oz. packs for $6.00. It was kind of like having your teeth drilled for a filling with a lazer torch and the gap stuffed with vanilla flavored "Ben Gay" ointment.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DUPE.1512 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DUPE.1512 (196)
Mild Mild Mild Very Pleasant

I got two pouches for the price of one ($3.19)so the price war right!This stuff has a great pouch aroma, packs and lights easy. No bite at all here. Very consistant and well behaved.

The vanilla casing is just enough and NOT overly applied. Smooth and buttery. A well behaved aromatic that burns to a dry ash, never gooping up the bowl. The Orientals make themselves known about mid bowl and play nicely with the burley and vanilla casing. This is an excellent smoke available in a 16 ounce tin on the Iwan Ries website. I highly recommend this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

akaiser77 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
akaiser77 (52)
Mild Medium Mild Very Pleasant

China Black Vanilla Burley is exactly what it's name implies: vanilla-flavored burley. It also includes Orientals, but they play a subsidiary role in the smoke.

The leaf is a little stringy in the pouch (which comes in a package of two for the price of one), but packs easily and lights easily as well. This is a remarkably biteless tobacco, and I find it a vast improvement over the likes of drugstore crap like Captain Black and even "high-end" aromatics like the abominable Captain Cool. I always know what to expect with this blend, and I'm never disappointed.

I don't find the casing overly applied, unlike my fellow reviewers. This is a smooth, well-mannered aromatic, sure to please those around you, and it burns to a dry ash, never gooping up one's pipe. I find the Orientals emerge only after the first third of the bowl, and they merge nicely with the burley and vanilla flavors. This is not "complex," as so many of us here seem to think every tobacco must be. But it has a delicious flavor and a pleasant aroma, and if it had "Dunhill" written on the tin, I'll bet it would be getting some rave reviews.

We can't be gourmets all the time, and when the gourmand in us needs satisfaction, things like China Black Vanilla Burley have a noble and economical role to play in the pipe smoking world. This is an excellent pipe tobacco in its genre, available in a one-pound tin for $17.00 at the Iwan Ries website, and I recommend it highly.

Nobody has rated this review yet.