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A mild flake blended from the finest burley tobaccos with added ripe Virginias and Cavendish. Navy Flake is light burning, making the lighting of the pipe very easy.

Notes: Introduced in 1965. According to Mac Baren.

BrandMac Baren
Blended ByMacBaren
Manufactured ByMacBaren
Blend TypeBurley Based
ContentsBurley, Cavendish, Virginia
FlavoringFloral Essences, Fruit / Citrus, Rum
CutFlake
Packaging50 grams tin, 100 grams tin, Bulk
CountryDK
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy PipesAndCigars.com
Iwan Ries
SmokingPipes.com
Product Image
Strength
Mild to Medium
Flavoring
Mild
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant

Favorite Of 30 Users

3.1
280 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
112
3 star:
96
2 star:
55
1 star:
17
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

One of the easiest flake blends to rub out without being dry, and one of the easiest burning flakes, too. Lots of fruit notes, and an occasional hit of hay, flowers and oats. The nutty, lightly earthy burley flavor is subdued a little and is more noticeable as you smoke it down. The citrus and light dark fruit sweet Virginia and cavendish taste compliments the topping of this blend. They also sport a few blades of grass, and a couple drops of honey. There's a very light spice/cinnamon flavor hit. MacBaren said only a tiny amount of rum is present, and I sense it in a minor way. They also say no honey has been added, so that essence comes from the Virginia cavendish as I previously noted. The nic-hit is mild. Won't bite or get harsh, but fast puffing may warm your tongue just a mite, so I suggest a moderate puffing cadence. Burns slightly less than a reasonable pace, cool and clean with a consistent flavor. Requires a little more than an average number of relights, and leaves little moisture in the bowl. Has a very pleasant after taste and room note. An all day smoke.

50 people found this review helpful.

krg1000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
krg1000 (180)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I picked up this blend to compare it to the SG version of this type of blend. To me, this is the weaker one as far as nicotine goes. The SG gives a far higher hit of Vitamin N than this one. This does give a nice hit of it, just not in the range of the SG. With that said, this is a fine blend that MB puts out. I think it may be their best blend, YMMV. The flakes are easy to stuff into the pipe and once lit, it says lit with no problems. It burns down to a fine ash at the bottom of the pipe. This blend does have a certain sweetness to it, which pulls everything together nicely. If you have a low tolerance to nicotine, this may be the one to give a try. Highly recommended.

24 people found this review helpful.

Sasquatch Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sasquatch (81)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

UPDATE: This is a classic, the more I smoke it, the more I like it. I find myself reaching for this over many other tobaccos, both for "daily" kind of smokes and for "treat" smokes. Just a lovely product. Unspectacular, but just damn good. Wife-friendly, tongue friendly, pipe-friendly... what a great product.

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I agree with Skando's review, by and large. This is very pleasant stuff, and doing the folding the way they do on the Mac Baren website, you get a really nice smoke, and a long, satisfying one at that. Tin moisture is perfect.

If you can't abide Navy Flake, you should probably sell your pipes. Not that this blend is so incredibly fantastic, but it really is very solid and inoffensive in all ways. Good tasting, easy smoking. Possibly my desert island smoke, not because it is so special, but because it is so unpretentious.

Quality is always top notch with Mac B, and this stuff could teach some other flake manufacturers a thing or two. Beautifully presented, and just a real pleasure to smoke.

23 people found this review helpful.

PC Plod Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PC Plod (63)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Very Pleasant

My ideal Virginia-Burley flake. Burley plays the leading role here, which it carries out with calm, masterly self assurance.

Call me old-fashioned, but the simple combination of Virginia and Burley does just about everything I want in a pipe mixture. The former provides that mellow refreshing character that's so stimulating to the taste buds, whereas the latter gives that deep roasted aroma and hefty mouth-feel that's so satisfying to the palate and nose. When either leaf is missing in a blend, I eventually come to miss its presence.

The burley in Mac Baren Navy Flake is top notch: deep, nutty, and fragrant without being too aggressive in Vitamin N. Even though I love strong, nicotine-rich varieties of burley, they can be a bit harsh and ashy. Especially after repeated smokes. Navy Flake never suffers from that problem.

A perfect blend to be fired up and enjoyed. Not analyzed. Just like a favorite passage of music: you don't hear distinct violins, oboes, and clarinets; instead you hear only beautiful waves of sound. Likewise, Navy Flake offers a steady supply of thick, fragrant plumes of smoke. 'Companionable' is a word I'd use to describe it.

As a side remark, I taste none of those rich rum notes that are present in Plumcake or Solent. The only casing I detect is a mild honeyed sweetness that serves to bind the tobacco flavors together in a perfect harmony.

Pipe Used: Sixten Ivarsson No. 95

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Online Vendor

Similar Blends: Erik Stokkebye - 4th Generation 1931.

14 people found this review helpful.

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

A traditional navy flake that is cool, semi-sweet, and will go slowly down the bowl, even if fully rubbed out. Mac Baren hit a home run with this one for me. It is a bit too strong to enjoy all day and night, but as a quiet respite from a long day, you will find this tasty blend to be the ticket for a nice long evening of enjoyment. The overriding factor of the blend is that is has more Burley than Virginia in the taste. So, if you are not fond of Burley tobaccos, don't join the Navy! If you are, sign up right now!

10 people found this review helpful.

oldcodger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
oldcodger (71)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild Pleasant

Navy in a blend name often signifies a distinct rum taste, but MacBaren Navy Flake has only the lightest kiss of rum. (Curiously. MacBaren Plum Cake could easily be called Rum Flake, as it has a dominant rum, not plum, flavor.) The flavor to the light aromatic Navy Flake is predominately the MacBaren standard maple sugar and water, which provides a taste akin to honey/molasses. Navy Flake also seems to have a little cinnamon added.

This is an aromatic, but it is a light aromatic, and even some pipe smokers who eschew aromatics may find Navy Flake palatable. The room note is not heavily aromatic, and it is quite pleasant.

The flakes themselves are the impeccable MacBaren production, clearly defined, but easily crumbled. Navy Flake may be smoked either by cramming the flakes down or rubbing them out. I tend to cram, and then rub out a topping to ensure an easy light. Navy Flake does light easier than many flakes.

The flakes are predominately burley, lightly sweetened by Virginia and the MacBaren cavendish, a cavendish that does not turn off as many smokers as do many cavendishes. There are some smokers who do not like burley, and they will not care for Navy Flake, as it is burley forward. But aside from these, the majority of pipesters will find Navy Flake quite pleasant.

Normally I smoke aromatics in my meerschaums and/or my cheaper pipes because of the ghosting issue. Navy Flake is not particularly prone to ghosting, so I often use my more expensive pipes when smoking it.

Navy Flake comes short of the WOW! factor for me, but It always gives me a rewarding smoke, and in a large bowled pipe a long lasting one.

I do not have bite issues with Navy Flake when using a leisurely puffing cadence. Be aware that a significant number of smokers have a body chemistry that creates bite problems for them with the MacBaren offerings.

9 people found this review helpful.

CriolloCorojo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CriolloCorojo (18)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Well, I must point out that this is the first flake that I ever tried and was blown away after smoking it. The tin smell is so good that I just want to break some up, pack it between my gums and my lips and slowly chew it (I used to do that with this blend but it has been several months since I have).

Since first trying Navy flake, I have tried over a dozen other flakes from various companies. I keep finding myself coming back to this one. I smoked it so frequently, that I once purchased five tens at once when getting a discount on bulk tins was an option at a popular site (less than $10 U.S. per tin). That site now charges over $13 U.S. per tin. That is still better than the B&Ms in my state that charge anywhere from $17 to $27 a tin. It is the only flake that I have ever purchased in bulk, and will do so in the Mac Baren 16 Oz box again soon.

The flakes are easily rubbed out and not too moist out of the tin. However, I found out that just a little drying allows it to open up to more complex flavors in the proper bowl. Rarely does it ever need a second light if one tamps gently along the way. I have received numerous compliments on the aroma. While it is definitely on the milder side for a flake, it makes for a good one to enjoy by constantly, gently puffing and then expelling through the nostrils. Smoking it this way allows the smoker to take in the whole breadth of the flavors which include mildly sweet virginia, nutty burley, dried fruit and distant honey and rum flavors. The complexity of this fine flake must be savored by not over drawing on the tobacco while it is being sipped through the mouth and exhaled through ones snout. If you get it too hot, then it is not quite as enjoyable. However, if it does get a little hot, it never seems to bite the tongue.

I have turned on several friends to this blend - all of which have enjoyed it; most of which have gone on to purchase some for themselves. If you enjoy flake and want an all-day smoke, this one will not disappoint. The flavor builds towards the end of the bowl when the virginias and burleys have married in the heat to a true perfection of tobacco bliss. At this point, the honey is still there but it just brings out the natural flavor of the quality tobaccos that much more.

What takes this one over the top is the price. I don't believe there is a better dollar or dollar value in a tobacco product. Yes, there are some better blends/flakes out there. But there is nothing that I feel I get quite as high of a pleasure to cost ratio than Mac Baren Navy Flake.

9 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1644)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Mac Baren - Navy Flake.

This arrived with just the right amount of hydration, making it ready to smoke. I like to fully rub and to do so with this is easy. It's a breeze to get lit.

The smoke's mildly flavoured, so the tobacco's are supported by a sweet rummy addition, not smothered. The burn from it's good but if it's puffed with too much alacrity it can bite. The nicotine's mild enough to be inoffensive to beginners, yet it's not so weak as to be a complete let down for seasoned puffers. The room-note's quite pleasant.

Navy Flake? Four stars:

Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: Mr Brog

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Smoke King

7 people found this review helpful.

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

Beautiful looking flake. Mine turned into a crumble cake at the slightest provocation so I simply rubbed it out and smoked it. The honey and rum tin aroma was overpowering and I wasn't expecting much from this one, particularly in light of my lack of success with many of the Mac Baren blends. But this one delivered. Compared to my Mac Baren reference (favorite blend) Symphony, this one was nowhere near as complex and nowhere near as naturally flavorful. But it was a very decent smoke, with the casing burning off almost at the match. It's something that could be smoked all day. But as mentioned, this one along with most Mac Baren blends will bite if you're not extremely careful. I liked this one; I doubt I'll buy more but it's definitely worth a try.

Little nuances in blends and smoking techniques that bring about varying results always interest me. I don't own any Peterson system pipes but perhaps I should! I liked this tobacco best when the smoke was directed at the roof of my mouth. I happened on this when the pipe I was smoking got too heavy for my jaw and I let it relax a bit. I tried the same thing with other tobaccos but so far none of them have shown as much variation in flavor with that than this one. Very interesting!

6 people found this review helpful.

Mephisto Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mephisto (32)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

This is a nice milder flake I like the fact that it is a flake and I use it for the windy outdoors thing. It should not take much breaking up and is afragile flake as is. Burns well and flavor is thicker if you dont break it up too much. Sweet without too much flavoring, a distinct molassas like aroma. This room note is tolerable to most non smokers and pleasent to some. It does burn a bit hot if you are not careful with the puffing and break the flake up, but is however nice especialy on cold days. I use it for cold outside days and use two flakes per medium size bolw. This way it lasts a while, is nice and warm and produces a sweet thick smoke. =Update= I have come to like this one more and more I like its packing and burning qualities as well as the nice smoke produced. It is not very complex but still pleasent. A good companion on walks outside. Does not dry out in the tin or come too moist in the first place. This is one of the blend that I keep in my regular stock. ( 2 or 3 extra tins of each of my favorites are always around )

6 people found this review helpful.

Eulenburg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eulenburg (193)
★★☆☆
Very Mild Very Mild Mild Unnoticeable

The striking thing about Navy Flake?a strange name to give a tobacco what's mostly burley?is the perfectly tooled, neatly sliced plug flake one finds inside the small rectangular tin that contains it. A tribute, surely, to Mac Baren's workmanship, if nothing else.

The smell is typical of the honeyed sweetening found in Dutch/Danish style aromatics, though nothing has been overdone. The flakes crumble easily into the broken-flake consistency of so many aromatic tobaccos. This composition burns cleanly and easily, without overheating, in my Peterson's Kildare dublin.

The taste is pure unadulterated burley. Quality burley, of course; smooth and mildly herbal; nothing sour or obnoxious. A refreshing, clean-palate taste: a treat, I should think, for the burley lover.

6 people found this review helpful.

coldmoon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
coldmoon (24)
★★★★
Very Mild Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant

The first thing that you smell when opening a tin of NF is honey. Lots of it. Along with some fruity and rum notes. So if you don't particularly like the taste or smell of honey - beware. The flakes are very accurate shape. The tobacco in the flake is mostly light colored with some darker pieces. The tobacco seems to be dried out too much but that's deceptive. I think it has just the right amount of moisture so that you do not have to puff very hard to keep it lit and get tongue bite.

You can either fold the flake or rub it out. There will be some difference in the taste but not too much. When I go outside to smoke the pipe I usually fold the flake in the form of the letter Z and stuff it in the pipe. It smokes a bit cooler to prevent pipe burn out. When indoors I usually rub the flake out.

Lights and stays lit very easy. Very few relights needed. You need to sip this tobacco, because if smoking this too fast you definitely will get a tongue bite.

Primarily there is a taste of honey in the tobacco also grassy and lemony notes are present. Honey taste gets a bit weaker after you get past the third of the bowl. After two thirds of the bowl the nicotine level gets quite noticeable. I find this tobacco to be very tasty. Easily my favorite Mac Baren blend. It has a nice lasting aftertaste after the smoke.

The room note is noticeable but not unpleasant at all. I would go as far as to say that it is rather pleasant.

The tobacco smokes down to fine dry grey ash. I would recommend this to any pipe smoker as an all day smoke. I keep this in my rotation.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Bing's Favorite

Age When Smoked: 4 months

5 people found this review helpful.

SmokeDawg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeDawg (82)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium Pleasant

Opening the tin I got a strong smell of sweet raisins. Delightful. The flake broke up easy and packed well in my Comoy large bowl. Lit well. No tongue bite. Warm, and taste of sweetness and liquour are steady and ever present. This was very interesting as the flavours began to come and go as you head to the bottom of the bowl. They rotated or popped in and out. I tasted honey one minute and not only tasted liquorice I smelled it as well. Then it vanishes and goes to something else.

Slow burning. Smokes better in small cool puffs, get it too hot and the flavours wash out and go flat on the tongue.

After my first bowl I quickly refilled. However after the second bowl I was hit with a good nicotine rush. This is a great flake and I highly recommend it. I plan on adding it to my steady rotation.

Pipe Used: Comoy selected straight grain

Purchased From: JR Cigars

5 people found this review helpful.

fr_tom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fr_tom (326)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I know that we are supposed to say that MacBaren tobaccos burn hot, but this was not my experience with Navy Flake. I do find the flakes too moist, and you can either leave a flake out or open the tin and wait a couple of weeks. This is a tasty mild VaBur on the burley side of things. It has a mild honey topping and a whiff of rum flavor. It is a good solid smoke, and I will buy it again.

5 people found this review helpful.

Hunter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hunter (52)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

This one is in my regular rotation. The casing brings out the best of the VA's natural sweetness, and is an overall delightful smoke.

I tend to roll up the flake the long way and kinda stuff it in the bowl, which seems to burn pretty well all the way through.

The moisture content is not excessive, so it stays lit fairly easily.

This is a pleasing all day kind of smoke. Very enjoyable.

5 people found this review helpful.

Ahmad Othman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ahmad Othman (46)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

This is my first blend dubbed "Navy" flake.. and from the history of tobacco, I imagined something rough and strong like the winds and waves braved by the navies when this kind of tobacco was made for the sailors. And the conservative, white & red tin art confirmed my speculation, and as I started opening the golden wrapper of Mac Baren, my surprise started. It is nothing as I imagined. The first thing that hit me was the beautiful, fruity aroma that welcomed me. Tropical, warm and gay. I tried to detect what aroma is that, but failed. Then the flakes themselves are of a lovely light brown colour with strands of gold as if it's a lazy sunset on the beach. In typical Mac Baren fashion, the flakes are hot pressed, which marries the flavours and makes the flakes as fragile as a little baby. They are easy to break and rub out. easy to pack and a bit tricky to light. But once you do, you're off to the races. The first draw confirms the aroma with a taste, a lovely taste that hit me with a childhood memory. And right then I recalled what aroma is that. It is licorice. And despite everyone saying it's fruit and rum. But I could detect neither, It is licorice all along. Lovely, consistent and easy to smoke all day. It burns down cool and well. And leaves a bit of white ash and some moisture in the bowl. I suspect that some drying time will remedy this, but I had no issue with it. Definitely an excellent VaBur with some sweet Cavendish. Highly recommended

Pipe Used: Stanwell Deluxe Royal Danish Brandy billiard

Age When Smoked: Fresh tin

Purchased From: Berlin B&M

4 people found this review helpful.

pipedrum22 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipedrum22 (15)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend has been around since 1965 and I can definitely see why. For one, this flake is the easiest burning flake that I have ever had. The honey and rum topping beautifully compliment the virginias and burley and you do not need to be concerned with tongue bite with this blend. Unlike many flakes, this one can be smoked as an all day tobacco. If you have never tried a flake and are wanting a good starter point, this would be the flake to start out with. I have never smoked a Mac Baren flake that disappointed me and this one is no exception.

4 people found this review helpful.

Capn Jimbo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Capn Jimbo (24)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

MacB's NF is one the most reviewed blends on TR with over 200 reviews, scores average 3.0, quite reasonable, yet with a roughly equal number of 2.0's and 4.0's evident, so there is evidently a fairly balanced difference of opinion.

Almost everyone comments favorably on the quality of the press and slides which must be seen to be appreciated. Likewise, most reviewers find that NF packs and burns very nicely with what seems to be the standard folding technique (once or twice lengthwise, then once or twice against the grain, roll it a bit, stuff loosely - to allow for expansion - then a bit of a top tamp and have at it). Most like the way it holds a light and burns rather slowly. All seem to agree that this is most assuredly a light, slow sipper (the steady burn helps with this).

All of these positives may account ffor Navy Flake's good 3.0 average review, but now to the con's. Navy Flakes are supposed be topped or lightly cased with rum. Although TR states the blend contains "Alcohol / Liquor, Cinnamon, Honey, Other / Misc, Rum", there just isn't much real rum apparent. Instead, most agree the leading impression is honey with any alcohols/rum not really noted. Strike one.

Although NF is said to be burley forward, with Virginia and what may be a bit of Virginia Cavendish, and despite those who praise its burley, what really seems to happen is that the combination cancels it out. Yes, there are some nice rich and toasty burley moments (particularly on relights) but it quickly retreats back into the blend. The Virginia makes its presence known primarily insofar as sipping technique which must be s-l-o-w, small and paced.

This is a bowl you want to draw out as long as you can. If you do, the alleged MacBaren burn is minimal; if you don't have a glass of coconut milk handy.

As for me when I first experimented with MacB's Navy Flake, it was a disaster tongue and palate-wise. I hadn't yet learned how to sloooow down and sip, a talent da'rum highly recommends. Later on and having learned to slow down, I simply loved this flake but again - this was in comparison to some very aromatic vanilla based cavendish - compared to these the NF featured what seemed to be rich tobaccos.

And again with more experience, that again has changed. I've personally come to appreciate well balanced blends that find what for me is my personal "sweet spot". Balanced enough that no single component dominates, but with enough differentiation that each component can be richly distinguishable. This is where NF now fails again for me.

It's not bad but the components - overlaid with the aforesaid honey - come together so completely that the components cancel one another out. Thus MacBaren's Navy Flake has returned to the level of a pleasant but not especially remarkable blend, not to mention the replacement of Navy rum with honey.

Such is life... add 1/2 point for a 2.5 or a tad more.

Pipe Used: MM cob

Age When Smoked: 5 months or a bit more

4 people found this review helpful.

fmjiii Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fmjiii (16)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Upon opening the tin, the aroma is a cross between light rum, honey and even some plum wine. It’s a little sweet, but not too sweet.

Lighting it isn’t difficult either and once lit it tends to stay that way without any great amount of puffing or numerous re-lights. One of the easiest flake blends to rub out without being dry, and one of the easiest burning flakes.

My preferred packing method (take a flake or two, fold them horizontally and vertically, stuff them into the pipe and flatten the top a bit; finished!).

The Burley is certainly the predominant tobacco in this blend and you can taste a fine nutty flavor in it thanks to the Burley, but it’s certainly not overpowering. In fact I wouldn’t rate its taste and strength to be any more than on the mild side of medium. No real nicotine hit. If you enjoy flake and want an all-day smoke, this one will not disappoint.

The room note is very pleasant and the taste throughout the bowl is rich and sweet.

Pipe Used: Various briars

Age When Smoked: New, 2012 & 2009 on label

4 people found this review helpful.

Joeray Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Joeray (61)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I wonder why mostly reviewer at here only gave 2 star rating to this good blend, according to my sef i will certainly give 4 star rating for this blend. First open the tin i can smell a good aroma of virginia and burley with a little bit hint from honey or rum. The flake sight is so good and beautiful, orange golden virginia mixed with dark brown untill black of burley, so soft so you can rub it easily. I dont found any trouble to pack it slightly into my pipe, the flake is good pressed and the moist is enought so when i rub it, the tobacco still in good shape. When i light it, i really enjoy the smell and taste of good va and burley, is so smooth and pleasant. Its not hard to keep the light, the tobacco's moist is very good so it burn well almost without gurgling. The smoke is great so i have almost 50 minutes joy with this blend at my LHS Purex straight apple pipe, Just a suggestion ; this blend is very good if enjoyed on straight pipe, i can directly taste the pleasant sweet and mellow of this tobacco.

Sure, i will buy it again and will keep some for aging.

Pipe Used: LHS Purex

4 people found this review helpful.

Pkloop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pkloop (52)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

For anyone who's bothered to read this far down, I'll add to the praise given to this tobacco. Mac has done a wonderful job with this winner. Upon opening the tin you are rewarded with an aroma reminding one of sweet oats,not too sweet..just perfect. The flakes are indeed, as Eulenburg noted, a tribute to Mac Barens workmanship. Perfectly stacked on top one another. Loading the pipe couldn't be any easier as this tobacco will lend itself to ANY method you wish to use. Lighting is not going to cause you any problems either, as this tobacco neeeds nothing more than a charing light, quick tamp, relight and your on your way. Even using bad packing techniques won't spoil anything here. This stuff loves staying lit. Taste is as described above, pure Burley with occasional VA notes popping up throughout the smoke. Smokes all the way down requiring few..if any..relights and absolutley NO BITTER BURLEY FINISH. All and all I rate this tobacco tops in all regards, flavor, appearence,burn quality and room note. I was not bitten by this tobacco but could see it happening..watch your puffing cadence here. If you get going to rapidly it can nip. I had this happen only by provoking it. This is a sure-fire wife pleaser here room note wise as well. I predict this tobacco will change some minds about Burley, as it isn't even remotely close to what one finds lavishing in the pouches of drugstores. If you know or are a Burley hater..give this a try or share with them. You will be impressed. This one will taking up alot of cellar space around here, I don't EVER want to not have this on hand. 03/12/05

4 people found this review helpful.

Jamey S Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jamey S (9)
★★★★
Mild Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Nice is the word for it.

When I packed it, I didn't know it had added flavoring. Only when I looked at the description, I discovered that – and that tells a lot about the tobacco. Usually, added flavor is masking the natural flavor of tobacco, which I particularly like. It always feels to me like adding syrup to wine, because you do not like the taste of it. This is not the case with this tobacco.

In this tobacco, the flavoring simply compliments the tobacco; not masking it, not trying to make the smoker think they're in a vanilla company. Simply adding some flavors that work in the background, unnoticeable.

Burley is the dominant flavor here: grass, hay, a distant chocolate smell. But unlike a classic burley blend, this one won't kick, at all. It's also not a weak-tasting tobacco – it's balanced to perfection. I couldn't put my finger on what the added flavor was. Maybe some flowers, maybe a little mint, maybe some lemon. I was expecting a lot more rum from a navy flake, but I almost couldn’t feel it.

This is ones of the nicest tobaccos I've tried. It's not a hardcore one, not extremely interesting or complicated, but simply nice, well balanced, tasty tobacco. One need some clean old niceness once in a while.

Pipe Used: Peterson Shamrock

Age When Smoked: 6 months

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

3 people found this review helpful.

Jacinto Cupboard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jacinto Cupboard (180)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

A Virginia Burley Flake. The flakes are mostly mid browns with blonde highlights. The flake is neatly presented in the tin but loose to the touch and fairly dry.

Tin note is bread and molasses with that ubiquitous McB casing that is honey like or malty.

Burns fine and has a moderate sweetness throughout. In my book this is one of those 'almost' aromatics. A very simple, easy to use tobacco, that comes at a reasonable price. It would probably be a good flake for those wanting to start their journey into that genre. The wife upticked the aroma of this baccy, which is a rare event. Somewhere between 2 and 3 stars for me.

Pipe Used: Lepeltier

3 people found this review helpful.

Corvus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Corvus (36)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Tolerable

After moving through Blockade Runner and Luxury Navy Flake I moved on to this mix in further investigation of the genre. The 11,000+ hit review on YouTube with the rousing score, nautical imagery, and the huge smoldering pipe sealed it- I had to have this. With anticipation I opened the tin, pulled back the gold foil and admired the look of the perfect flakes. Dark molasses and hay are the prominent tin notes.

I lit up and was rewarded with a bit of the molasses, but more so honey. Some tangy Virginia flavor shined through, but dulled by the obvious presence of a somewhat flat burley and the cavendish. Nirvana! About mid-bowl some spice notes arise, especially clove and cinnamon. Persistent sweetness throughout and some toasty grains. It smoked quite warm and I wised up to some drying and a lighter pack. The lighter honey notes diminish and the molasses ramps up and it started to get a little murky. The lingering aftertaste was quite welcome. Quite a tobacco on the first bowl.

I went through the first 1/4 of the tin (100 g) fairly quickly and also continued to allow it to dry. My enjoyment though started to diminish, both during the course of each bowl and over time. Now, I find this blend cloying and over processed. The base tobaccos are of quality, but it is pretty heavily cased. It has stayed tacky to the touch even while dried to the point where the flames are friable. As the bowl develop it gets wet and develops bitterness. The dark molasses has become unbearable, nearly to the point of nausea. I also feel a coating in my mouth, unlike anything else I have tried. In my greed I have way too many opens tins and pouches and have resolved to remedy that before exploring further. Unfortunately, this damned oversized tin has become a bit of a personal white whale.

I regret that my opinion has so soured on this. I really enjoyed it initially and had high expectations, but just don't care for it now very much. With almost everything else I've smoked I've usually gained appreciation or came to recognize other similar blends as superior, but with this it shrinks in my estimation. With that said it still gains a qualified but lowly recommendation due to the quality of the leaf and presentation as well as the initial impressions, but I surely won't be revisiting.

Finally, a personal quibble on the naming. This not a navy blend. Yes it is a Va flake, but there is no rum and it is adulterated with burley. I would suggest it is a VaBur aromatic. Approached as such maybe it would be more enjoyable.

3 people found this review helpful.

Lit a Kia Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lit a Kia (69)
★★☆☆
Very Mild Mild Very Mild Very Pleasant

Very light, golden-colored flake. Nose is honey and slight hint of rum over sunny Virginias (grass, hay).

On first light, all I can think is, "If Tinkerbell had body odor, it would probably smell like this." Very light/airy blend, bit of citrusy/grapefruity funk to it, but that's it. Not dark, complex, or brooding in the least.

Opened up nicely by mid bowl. I don't notice the burley at all, nor the cavendish, except for its role in carrying the flavorings, which it does adequately. It's a very well behaved tobacco that burns dry and clean.

Beyond Tinkerbell's armpits, it occurred to me throughout the smoke that this is not bad in a Darren McGavin (RIP) Christmas Story sense. It's not good. But it's not bad either. Give it a try.

3 people found this review helpful.

L'Italiano Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
L'Italiano (170)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This mixture is heavily flavored, with honey and many other ingredients. There is casing and there is top dressing. When you open the tin you can perceive the honey. You have to smoke it very slowly if you want a decent puff. Otherwise the taste (the flavoring in your mouth) is very bad. Overall it is a mediocre mixture, not bad but of poor quality. I don’t think I’ll buy it again. In my personal rating (from 1 to 10) my score is 5 and two stars.

3 people found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (302)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I?ve smoked Navy Mixture in the past. It is not a favorite of mine, but I do like it and whenever I find a tin I buy one. Just recently I found a tin of Navy Flake. It is indeed very similar to the mixture, but the flake version somehow gives it a richer, fuller, and sharper taste.

I guess the process of pressing the tobaccos helps to condense the natural sugars, oils and resins to the extent of making the flake version more palatable. The flake is beautifully presented, with a very nice aroma: sugary and warm. But the flavor isn?t that sweet. I guess the Virginias used in the flake are treated the same as Virginia Flake, but the added Burleys and Cavendish provide more richness and depth of flavor. I believe there might be a slight rum topping.

Unlike the mixture, Navy Flake has no tongue bite and it burns nicely. Someone has said this is a classic. I believe it is, even when the flavor is not that common or familiar as other flakes. Personally I enjoy Dunhill?s Light Flake, Stokkebye?s or Rattray?s Virginia flakes much more, but this one isn?t bad at all. A nice alternative to flake smoking. Recommended.

3 people found this review helpful.

Captain Pete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Captain Pete (83)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Update: Am bumping this up to four stars. With the right pipe, this stuff is every bit a quality smoke as anything else. It tastes just like it smells, and might end up replacing my treasured Orlik Golden Sliced if I can find it for as cheap.

I am surprised; a MacBaren tobacco that didn't set my tongue on fire. I just had to give MacBaren one more try. Their tins look so cool, and would be perfect for keeping nuts and screws in once empty.

Honestly, the flakes were very easy to seperate, and a nice brown color with lighter speckles intermixed. The aroma was very pleasant, smelling mainly of good virginia tobacco. I will say that I didn't dare rub it out one bit; I just folded up a flake and stuffed it in a smallish sized pipe. On first light I detected this tobacco's desire to bite, I could tell it really wanted to. But, after getting the char and having the pipe going good, it settled down to a managable tingle.

The taste was really good, but rather on the mild side. If you like a full flavored virginia, this probably won't do. But it does have nice flavor, and is worth the extra care you have to take to prevent tongue bite. As long as I took just tiny draws, I was able to enjoy the smoke with no bite. But be careful, as one good hard pull will produce a scorched tongue. But the quality of the tobacco is worth this extra care. So, as long as you don't smoke your pipe like you're trying to suck water through a brick, this is a good smoke. Not up to my level of taste expectations, but still good.

3 people found this review helpful.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Full Very Pleasant

WOW!!!! This blend completely made me change my perception of burley blends. Although I wasn't overly impressed with Barbary Coast and the drug store varieties are sad to say the least, I buckled under pressure from the fellows at the pipe shop and here I am. Burley is great! After two back to back tins this blend has entered a permanent spot on my top five list of Tobaccos that I cannot do without. This tobacco has the best casing I've tried so far; a honey taste that tastes as real as can be. It doesn't interrupt the tobacco taste at all. This tobacco spurred me to buy some other burley blends just to see if perhaps this one wasn't a fluke. So far I have tried Peterson's University flake, Burley London Blend, and pennington gap, and although they have indeed been fine tobaccos, this one is still the cream of the crop. This is the perfect choice in the Oklahoma summertime and if I was stuck on an island with high temperatures, this may very well be the tobacco I would pick for companionship. This tobacco comes out of the tin at a perfect humidity, and gave me absolutely no bite. I hate to be cliche, but it really is better in a corn cob. Go get some and be prepared for pipe nirvana!!!!! (P.S.- My wife loves the room note!!!)

3 people found this review helpful.

Jakob Kiilerich Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jakob Kiilerich (120)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant

This is gonna be a combo-review, since I am smoking a 20 year old tin right now, and just finished a new one last week. Oh boy is there a difference or what?!

Of course the ageing makes a remarkable difference, but I'm sure that Mac Baren have changed their recipe along the way..

New Tin This is a nice sweet honey-like burley flake. Gentle on the palate, ok nic-punch and will never get harsh. A very friendly Burley/VA/quite cased flake.

Old fantastic tin OMG! This is a supernatural enhancement of the above. Everything in this version is a 1000 times more present; the softness, the aroma, the casing. (which no longer tastes unnatural) Ok, the nic-level is of course the same. Ahh shucks this is hard to describe...

BUY AGED TOBACCO!!!

Jakob Kiilerich, Denmark

3 people found this review helpful.

SmokingHawk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokingHawk (27)
★★★☆
Mild Very Mild Very Mild Pleasant

I couldn't agree more with Philo down there the flakes look very neat and perfectly thin slices and tin aroma is more toward citrusy fruity and a very faint hint of rum upon hard sniffing. Unlike GH flakes it folds and pack the bowl without any mess burns easily but taste is on the lighter side you get occasional burst of fruitiness and sweetness of Virginia but burns quickly before you get the hang of it.

Pipe Used: Good Briar pipe

Age When Smoked: 6 months

Purchased From: Germany

2 people found this review helpful.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (180)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

MacBaren Navy Flake looks perfect in the tin, with those nice wide slices, just perfect for a KKKK sized bowl. That’s kind of where my happiness ends with this tobacco, Navy Flake has no discernible Rum flavor as one might expect from a ‘Navy’ flake, though it does kind of taste like everything but rum. There is a nice grassy Virginia flavor, some Burley toast flavor, a little floral, a little fruit and I got a lot bored. This isn’t so much flavorless, as not flavorful enough in any one direction, I cannot say it’s a poor tobacco, it’s like a generic version of a Navy style flake, the flavor is there, it’s just so toned down and subdued as to be completely forgettable. Try Samuel Gawith’s Navy Flake instead.

2 people found this review helpful.

Artyom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Artyom (8)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Good for an outside smoking. The first time I tried it on a walk in the woods. In combination with coniferous odor it gives incredibly rich notes of flowering field and rum. P.S. When the half of the bowl is gone, leave the pipe to cool down for 10-15 mins and relight it again. Enjoy the spiciness and lightness of this tobacco.

Age When Smoked: 4 years

2 people found this review helpful.

Lazarus77 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lazarus77 (87)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Superior all day smoke, easy to pack, lit, few relights. No tongue bite at all even if you are puffing like freight train. Honey toping is dominating, rum hiding somewhere in background. Overall very nice flake, highly recommending to everybody.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: 6 month

2 people found this review helpful.

J.R. Patton Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
J.R. Patton (106)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Totally amazing blend! How did this fly under my radar for so long?!! It should be noted that I've only smoked this in cobs. I find that burley blends always taste best in a cob versus briar. This is like C&D Briar Fox with 10 times the strength, flavor, and complexity. I've always been a fan of BF, with the one complaint that it stand out a little more. If you're not a fan of burley, you probably won't like NF. As with all burley blends, it's best when sipped. If you get to chugging you'll probably overheat your pipe, sour the smoke, and burn the hell out of your tongue. I gave this no dry time. Out of a fresh tin, I z-folded a couple flakes and stuffed them in a larger cob pipe, topped it off with some smaller pieces, then gave it a series of 3 pre-lights. From there, it took off and burned the entire bowl without relight. Perfect sipping blend! One large bowl lasted nearly an hour and a half using this method. I haven't been this excited about a blend since first trying Irish Flake.

Pipe Used: Various MM cobs

Age When Smoked: Fresh tin undated

Purchased From: Pipesandcigars.com

2 people found this review helpful.

the_dalai_lama_himself Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_dalai_lama_himself (43)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Rum is tastefully applied and easily discernible beneath the Virginia and burley which bounce in and out of the lead, I'd say theFruity and sweet from the Virginia stars , with some of the toasty tobacco taste from the burley and some elements from the cavendish tying the experience together in a good performance for cavendish. Smokes cool and clean and easily folds and stuffs into the bowl without even any dry time necessary. Some relights needed but not overly necessitated. Easily a 4 star for me, satisfying all day smoke.

2 people found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (492)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I really like this blend. I received a healthy portion of it in our PSF secret santa exchange. Probably a good 4 ounces. It is a lighter bodied VaBur with plenty of nuttiness and sweetness as is described by the contents listing. This could easily be an all day smoke. Good for a relaxing smoke or the mindless smoke alike.

I won't put this up to the four star range as there are other vaburs that are more along the line of mind blowing IMO such as Irish Flake, stonehaven or Dockworker. I think I would even put Mac Baren's own ODF and possibly BLB above this one, but it is good for what it is. I think the aforementioned blends have a bit more body than this and that is probably where my preference runs in this genre.

Purchased From: gift

Similar Blends: Erik Stokkebye's 4th Generation 1931 flake is pretty similar to my tastes..

2 people found this review helpful.

Armac Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Armac (10)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

In the past two years, I suspect I've tried most Navy Flakes available and in my opinion, Mac Baren Navy Flake is the best by far. Room note is pleasant, and if properly packed, its a long and enjoyable smoke right to the end. Rum taste is light but noticeable throughout the smoke and if dried a bit, there is little or no bite.

I find most Mac Baren tobaccos to be hot in every definition of the word. I love Scottish Mixture, for example, but can't smoke it, even in the flake form. I've often thought Mac Baren, many years ago, discovered a million pound batch of New Mexico Hatch chilis and began adding a bit to their blends. Having said that, however, heat hasn't been the case with Navy Flake and I highly recommend it.

2 people found this review helpful.

strongirish Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strongirish (249)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I have come to the conclusion that either you like MacBaren's tobaccos or you do not. I happen to like their blends and don't find them to bite at all if properly packed and smoked. MacBaron's has three blends in my top ten and this one just might get added to my cellar as well. It has a very sweet pouch aroma somewhat like honey. It is very finely cut ribbon pressed flake with a dark brown color. I have now smoked it dry, somewhat dry, and right out of the bag I was sampled. It is very tender and must be folded with care if smoked that way or it is easily rubbed out. I prefer it folded and somewhat dry, but it changes in behavior and taste in the three different moisture levels. I have not had this aged but I bet it gets even better. It takes a few lights but then settles down in the pipe and stays lit well. I like it in a Kirsten pipe. Upon lighting up, it does have the graham cracker and rum taste that others have found but it burns off very fast and becomes a very sweet, full and creamy smoke. The VA sweetness comes through very well along with the cavendish. But the burley added to this blend really brings those to out and gives it a fullness that keeps one sipping and not puffing. The room note to me was very nice and was not heavy, but subtle. It burned all the way down to the bottom leaving a dark grey ash with a touch of dottle. No moisture or gunk was left in my pipe. I like this blend a lot and will be putting some on my next order to cellar and age to test again. I highly recommend this to all MacBaron lovers and as a crossover to VA blend flakes from burley.

2 people found this review helpful.

Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (127)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is an old favorite I have been smoking for a good many years. Sometime ago I was able to purchase a number of tins for $4.39 each. So, naturally, I bought everything the tobacconist had in stock and this tin has been in my basement for several years. In the tin it smells almost identical to Mac Baren Dark Twist, the aroma of cinnamon toast. It has a smooth sweet tobacco flavor. For me it does not have the distinctive burly flavor of Barbary Coast or Edgeworth Sliced. It does, however, provide delicious tobacco flavor, and is quite sweet. Very easy on the tongue with no bite. In my opinion, this tobacco has often been copied by several German manufacturers in their treatment of Virginia flakes, but has never been duplicated. Despite the sweetness, it could be an all day tobacco because it delivers excellent tobacco taste. This would be a big step up for the aromatic lover. Along with Symphony, Plum Cake, Dark Twist and the Solent Mixture, it is among my favorites from Mac Baren. Paddy.

2 people found this review helpful.

Pagercat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pagercat (40)
★★★☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

By far the best burley blend I've enjoyed. It burns well and doesn't bite as much as some of the MacB blends. The flakes are about the size of a stick of chewing gum. It rubs out well with minimal effort.

Light woody/nutty flavor, pleasant subtle aroma. This is good smoked straight but it also can be a great blending tobacco. My recipe for "Stumpy's Blend" (named after one of my cats) is one navy flake, one disc of Mac Baren Rollcake and a sprinkle of St. James Parish Perique. It's a good burning smoke with a splash of spice.

2 people found this review helpful.

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

Beautifully cut slices of Va. and Burley, with just a tad of topping. Rubs out easily, lights easily, and provides a delightful, soft, mouthfilling range of tastes. I can pick out the nutty Burley and the sweeter Va., neither drowned by the minimal casing. Smokes well outdoors if not completely rubbed out. An excellent go-to blend in the mild to medium range.

2 people found this review helpful.

thesmoggypipester Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thesmoggypipester (52)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Very Pleasant

picked this up as it seems I'm on a bit of a mac baren binge of late, a lovely mixture of burley Virginia and Cavendish, with a nice honey sweetness and an almost spiced rum tang to it, i also pick up a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg, along with a touch of chocolate from the burley.

preparation, for a flake, is the absolute easiest I have had the pleasure of working with, i quick roll between the palms and you are presented with a mixture that is perfect for the pipe.

the sweetness takes centre stage with this one, it never cloys or becomes overbearing, it's just a nice addition and that cinnamon and nutmeg warmth gently breezes in and out during the smoke effortlessly. there is some nice natural tastes from the second half onwards as the added flavours move aside slightly. All in all another great smoke from mac baren, it has enough complexity to keep you busy when you want to savour it but also is equally fitting when doing something else.

Room note is extremely pleasant, i can't see this offending many if any people you are around, strength is medium and in my opinion would make a decent smoke for repeated smoking throughout the day.

4 stars earned effortlessly.

p.s the moisture content is bang on and can be smoked straight out of the pack. British manufacturers take note, flakes do not need to be like drowned rats!!!

4 stars effortlessly earned.

Pipe Used: falcon with Genoa bowl

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Mysmokingshop.co.uk

Similar Blends: I would say if you like amphora full this will be an ideal companion., Also if you like Scottish blend by Mac baren this is very similar and should be right up your street..

1 person found this review helpful.

JEM Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JEM (21)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The first time I smoked this blend, I found it to burned very hot and harsh, so I held off on reviewing it until I could change pipes and slow down. I’m glad I did!

In the tin, there is the smell of fruit cake. You can smell the topping, but it’s not a distinct rum smell.

I folded two slices and packed the bowl. I have found this to burn cooler than rubbing it out, which is what I did the first time. It still burned warmer than other blends in the cellar, but there was no tongue bite. The moisture level is perfect and it is easy to rub out, if that’s what you like. Two charring lights later, we were smoking, and it stayed lit with no problems. The nicotine hit was noticeable but not too strong. That was a good reason to take it slowly. There’s plenty of smoke, which was nice. It had a pleasant taste, with a little spice, but nothing stood out too much. The room note was pleasant, as well.

Overall, I recommend this blend.

Pipe Used: Alpha Freehand

Age When Smoked: 1 month

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

1 person found this review helpful.

Greekpipesmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Greekpipesmoker (152)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Lots of positive reviews and the ages this blend continues to be producted motivated me to purchae a tin.once the tin cracks a florall and citrucy smell comes out.stuck your nose in and you detect some alcohol and spice notes.though a bit moist the flakes are very manageable either to rub or to fold into the bowl° i noticed that this flake behaves the same good.lights easy and some relights are needed.while smoking the tastes are pleasant and balanced.in my opinion the cavendish and the virginias are balanced between them leaving the burleys behind.floral assences,spices,grass,citruses and fruits are mixed really well giving a great taste mixture from the beginning till the end.rarelly some spices and alcohol notes are present.burns medium hot and slow to total ash with no tongue bite and moisture at the end of the bowl.the room note is pleasant.the nicotine level is medium .defenitelly an all day smoke and a must try!

Age When Smoked: Rubbed and packed at once, folded at once

1 person found this review helpful.

J. Ward Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
J. Ward (37)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

This is a very tasty flake. Delightfully easy to rub out and pack, Mac Baren Navy Flake is light, sweet hay and grass at first light. The initial flavors are quickly followed by a light taste of honey that compliments flavors of oats, some nuttiness from the burleys. The virginias and burleys harmonize throughout with the aforementioned honey sweetness, all smoothed out by a bit of cavendish which also adds its own slight touch of sugar. The fruit and floral essences are more like afterthoughts than statements in this blend, and as the bowl progresses you'll notice a little cinnamon tingle as well. And no bite. This is Mac Baren at its finest.

Pipe Used: Cobs and briars

Age When Smoked: 6 months

Purchased From: smokingpipes.com

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipesolitude Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipesolitude (13)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

The tin aroma is very inviting, a strong cake-like rum scent. The flakes are very nicely cut and easy to rub out. Does not need a lot of drying. Burning qualities are excellent. NF produces a thick and very rich and smooth smoke, enough not to fill the whole pipe in order to be satisfied. As long as you control your cadence, the smoke remains cool and does not burn or get harsch. The nicotine is definitely felt, but not owerpowering (well, maybe if you load up a big bowl). Tastewise the cake-like rum scent definitely translates into the tastedepartment as well. It is a sweet taste, almost on the verge of being a bit too sweet but not quite. But this lasts only about half the bowl, then the flavouring tend to diminish and you get a more straight tobaco taste. However, the tobacco lacks a bit in complexity. There is a kind of sharp undertone, but it never gets harsch. I would say that the excellent burning qualities and the smoothness of the smoke is the most rewarding aspect of NF, more so than the complexity of the taste. That is why I only give it 3 stars. Except for the added flavour I don't think there is enough complexity in NF to deserve a 4 star rating.

1 person found this review helpful.

BryGuySC Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BryGuySC (26)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The flake was smoked well dried. The flakes were breaking apart, laterally, so I pinched together the right amount of “lines” and folded into thirds and stuffed them in. This is a well rounded tobacco. I can pick up the hay notes from the virginia, and a creamy nuttiness (I assume from the burley), and a light sweetness. I don’t get much of a rum note, but I’m not sure how old this is, so it may have reduced with time. The smoke is smooth and buttery, and very satisfying. I think everything comes together in this tobacco to make a great smoke. Nothing stands out, destined for greatness, but I was happy with the smoke. By the end of the smoke, I am feeling the nicotine, but it is not overwhelming. This made for a very pleasant end to the day. I’m going to pick up some more of this.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Roma 626

Age When Smoked: unknown

1 person found this review helpful.

DenizBeck Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DenizBeck (263)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

A worthy classic.. whenever you don't know what to smoke: Navy Flake will do the trick! I have a few slices of this jarred in the car for when I'd forget to pack some backy when on tour. It matches any pipe and won't leave a ghost, worst case is it sweetens up your pipe a bit. It's easily available, also in small "Kiosk" who usually only sell cigs, newspapers and at max 1-2 goopy-cheap aromatics for the pipe.

The smell from the tin is honey-sweet, citrusy with with gentle tobacc spice to it. Very mild hints of rum-ish notes. Navy Flakes appearance is delightful, golden, bright- to darker brown. Perfectly cut flake slices are stacked perfectly in the tin - classic Mac Baren Flake product, excellent and intriguing! Smokeable right away, but drying won't do any harm to it imo. Handling the flakes is a joy and folding and stuffing is just as easy as rubbing it out or even cube-cut if you like. Very beginner-friendly consistency of the slices. I prefer it folded&stuffed, as I feel it gives the most intense flavours.

As soon as this flagship of Navy-Flake tradition is burning, or better sailing you get greeted by rich tobacco taste. Rich, nutty-molasses Burley with mild earthy tone to it. Decent tanginess. Paired with a very lemony, citrusy fresh and somewhat bready flavour from the VAs. A decent toasted/fermented quality, which I guess is contributed by the Cavendish is ever present and very delightfully rounds the taste. The "Rum" flavouring is rather unobtrusive and (to me) is only perceptible as a citrus-sour, spicy-sharp aroma. Not really alcohol-ish, very smooth and mild. Good amount of honey-ish sweetness make this an easy, no-frills, but solid as rock All-Day smoke for any situation.

Dont hestitate - give it a try, or you'll miss out on a great tobacco. A blend I always keep some ounzes at hand. 4/4 stars - thank you Mac Baren for a everlasting classic that brings a lot of joy to me

Pipe Used: Clays, Cobs, Briars

Age When Smoked: fresh, few months of aging in a jar

1 person found this review helpful.

Effluvinator Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Effluvinator (51)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have been smoking this since 1980 and loved it from the start. Not much I can say to expand on the well written reviews of JimInks and the others who describe it better than I ever could, but this may be THE tobacco that I would choose if I had to have only one.

Pipe Used: Various briars and cobs

Age When Smoked: Fresh to aged

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

Similar Blends: Wessex Burley Sliced, Edgeworth Sliced, Best Brown Flake..

1 person found this review helpful.

tobakkvarer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tobakkvarer (5)
★★★★
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I like this tobacco. It has a simple, uncomplicated sweet, nutty-like flavour (I guess coming from the burley) with only just a tiny bit of topping. The topping is not really distinct enough that I feel it instead compliments the tobaccos instead of replacing the flavour.

The tin note is sweet and a little powdery smelling. The flakes themselves are easy to handle and fold and came out of the tin at a perfect moisture. Unlike others here, I did not have tongue bite but the pipe can easily get hot.

In terms of nicotine amount, I find it very manageable. I am not sure why, particularly because people are saying otherwise. I am quite a lightweight when it comes to nicotine, but I can easily smoke this one through without a major nicotine buzz.

Here where I am (in Norway), tobacco is expensive. At the airport (Oslo), they sell it in duty-free for 119kr for 100g, which is roughly $13 USD. Most tobaccos go for ~300kr for 50g tins ($35 USD), which is probably the highest price in Europe I seen so far. So, I had an interest in remaining positive over this blend. As it sounds from my review above, this is actually quite easy. When I am at the airport again, I am stocking up on this.

If I was a more frequent pipe smoker, given the price/quantity/quality of this blend, this would probably be in rotation a lot. It is that good to me.

EDIT: As I smoke this more, I am noticing that the aftertaste is a little syrupy tasting. It doesn't detract much from the tobacco for me though.

EDIT: It's been 3-4 months since I wrote the initial review. Since then, I stocked up a lot on this and plan to do more. It became my most common smoke, because for me, it's cheaply available (as mentioned, something not common here) and it is so easy to smoke. If I smoke something different now, it is the result of asking the question of "What should I smoke besides navy flake?"

I have also smoked this in other pipes and the description I provide in the above edit (it's syrupy) is only exclusive to certain pipes, it seems.

Pipe Used: Many pipes

Purchased From: Oslo/Gardemoen Airport Duty Free Shop

1 person found this review helpful.

Duke Nukum Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Duke Nukum (13)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

One of my favourite tobaccos.

Admittedly, I haven't bought this recently and the tin has changed and I am told so has the way it is cut to be packed.

The tin aroma is sweet, leathery tobacco with hints of rich rum. The flavour mirrors the aroma and the room note is sweet and pleasant. Not taxing on the palate, though has some complexity.

Aging makes little difference to this so you might as well smoke it fresh!

If you like 'Plumcake' but can do without the (albeit minute) Latakia component, then this is for you.

Not strong in nicotine but a good, cool-burner whether whole, broken or rubbed out, and can be made to smoke so slowly you'd be surprised.

Doesn't produce large volumes of smoke or particularly dense smoke so I'd suggest it's a good one for a long car trip when you want to see out the windscreen!

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: New Tin, 5 y/o tin

Purchased From: McGahey the Tobacconist

Similar Blends: Mac Baren - Plumcake.

1 person found this review helpful.

jedibastard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jedibastard (24)
★☆☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

So the one star is my personal opinion on this tobacoo. It has nothing to do with quality!!!

This was the very first tobacco i bought. I saw some reviews on youtube, and read some reviews on here. So it had to be good right? You know, with all the great reviews!

The tin note smelt fantastic!!!! Almost like a sweet, raisin with some hay tossed in there. I rubbed out the flake and packed.

Lighting the pipe. It burnt the hell out of my tounge. I couldnt taste anything from this tobacco. Even before the scorching of my tounge, i couldnt detect any type of grassy notes. Just really hot air. The room note was a great. A warm sweet grass aroma. It took a flame beautifully. Stayed lit. And ashed to this fine off white powder. The flake wasnt to moist or too dry.

I waited a few days to try it again. This time, i just kinda rubbed it into a ball and packed it in the bowl. SAME THING!!! And i puffed even slower. I ended up asking around if the same thing happened to them. I was informed the sugar content of the tobacco itself is known to bite. Age will mellow it out. And. Theres a reason many people call this brand "mc tounge bite"

So i tossed it into a jar. Did my thing. And forgot about it.

Fast forward to almost 9 years later. IT STILL BITES LIKE A MADMAN!!!! No matter how slow i puff it!

im a little bummed too. The color, the texture, the aroma is absolutely great! That alone makes me want to smoke it. But i honestly cant get past the tounge bite.

Pipe Used: La Rocca

1 person found this review helpful.

raybrown55 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
raybrown55 (27)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I've higly appreciated both Peterson Irish Flake and University Flake, but, to be in my regular rotation, they are a little too strong; so I was searching something similar in taste, but lighter. I knew that Mac Baren Navy Flake is similar in composition (Virginia / Burley), but hesitated to try it, having tried Mac Baren Mixture Scottish, which I don't like at all. Well, I was wrong: Navy Flake is a delicious blend, with a smooth taste, due to the perfect marriage between Virginia and Burley, and its strength is perfect for me. The light alcoholic topping (maybe whisky or rum?) contributes positively to taste, without being overwhelming. Higly recommended!

1 person found this review helpful.

M.Smolensky Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
M.Smolensky (6)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

This is the first flake tobacco I have tried. I wanted to like it very much, due to the four star reviews. I have smoked about six bowlfuls. The flakes are easy to handle, and the tobacco looks well made. It folds nicely, burns well, and produces nice volumes of smoke. But, to me, the smoke is tasteless. It is mild to the extreme. This tobacco is bland and boring. I wish I could describe all the flavors in it, as others have. But, I taste nothing. I would like to say what it tastes like, but it doesn't taste like anything. It is just smoke. Recommend trying MacBaren HH Old Dark Fired Ready Rubbed.

Pipe Used: Al Pascia, Stanwell, Nording

Age When Smoked: 7 months

Purchased From: Pipes and Cigars

1 person found this review helpful.

artielonsNEW Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
artielonsNEW (3)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I just love everything about this: The compact 50g tin, the neatly packed ideally cut flakes. No more random squiggly shavings. It´s so neat to take a even flake and scissor them to about 3mm pieces. You can pack them fairly tight but it burns well - and LONG. The aroma is slightly spicy with a noticable liquorice flavor. I found my favorite!

Pipe Used: WESSEX with ABSORBA filter

Age When Smoked: Fresh to a week old

Purchased From: My Smoking Shop,UK

Similar Blends: I´ve encountered nothing like it but I like Borkum Riff Bourbon, MacBaren´s HARMONY (for easy availability) as well as McBaren´s Vanilla (decent vanilla flavor). Aroma Full Flavor is good too..

1 person found this review helpful.

From Etten Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
From Etten (22)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

Out of the tin the most perfectly stacked thin flake packed into my bowl, smoked to the bottom, no relight. Bowl aroma, easy draw, rich flavor made this smoke pleasing. The gray ash at the end was of grey fine residue. So, the blend was exceptional in all characteristics and I think I've discovered a great 4 star keeper, then my hiccups start (I hiccup when I overdose on N). 3 Stars for me it was mostly an exceptional experience.

Pipe Used: Tswuge Briar

Age When Smoked: Tin Fresh

Purchased From: Pipes & Cigars Month Club

1 person found this review helpful.

WFCook Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WFCook (1)
★★★☆
Mild Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Nice smell right out of the tin. Hadn't had this blend in 20 years. Nice feel to the tobacco when crumbling and twisting it up. Packed nicely. Lit well. Tamped even. Burns to a fine white ash. Nice taste about 1/3 into a bowl. Quite mild. At 2/3 into bowl, it becomes pronounced and deeper flavors emerged. Scant taste of fruit... almost light plum, raisin like. Burns very even. Great smoke with a book. Burned for 65 minutes. No tongue bite or foulness. Would make for a nice everyday smoke. Try some you won't be disappointed.

Pipe Used: 1938 Dunhill Dublin smooth finish buyere

1 person found this review helpful.

pecheur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pecheur (19)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

Openning the small tin reveals lovely emossed gold paper covering a neat arrangement of very pretty thin flakes and a pleasant tin note of honey and tobacco. The whole thing screams of quality. As the flakes are thin and not heavily compressed they rub out easily but need a little dry time.

So far so good.

I can't taste the rum only the honey which I find very disappointing from a 'navy flake'. To be honest I don't like the combination of honey and tobacco but then that's a personal thing. More importantly this bites me like a rabid dog. I simply can't smoke it and I'm a naturally slow smoker, my guess is there is something in this blends that doesn't agree with my mouth chemistry.

Pipe Used: MM Washington

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: mysmokingshop

1 person found this review helpful.

samcoffeeman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
samcoffeeman (33)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Tolerable

A typical Mac Baren offering, treated with a dose of maple sugar which isn't my favorite treatment. I don't find this overly flavored, but wish I could taste the rum a bit more. It lights and smokes easily out of my tin with no drying time. Burley forward blend here which helps with the cool smooth burn. Being a virginia lover this is lacking in the flavor department for me. I like a nice sweetness which this one doesn't impart. Light in nicotine as well, and I do like a bit in my tobacco. Good for a beginner flake smoker to practice but not for me.

Pipe Used: Rad Davis apple

Age When Smoked: 6 months

1 person found this review helpful.

nekeke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
nekeke (19)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

Lemon and honey... Thats the short version of reviewing this tobacco...

Packaging is great. Both the tobacco and the tin of course. Upon opening the tin, first smell you get is the smell of honey. Probably in every corner of the world, products differ from place to place, but let me say this... I am a fan of tea as well. I drink a lot. Both regular and herbal tea. And there was this one herbal tea, from a well known manufacturer that said on the label, "Lemon and honey". This tobacco smells exactly like that tea. And curiously tastes similar..:) Other than that... This is strange, this may be labeled (and categorized) as a flake, but if this is a flake than most SG's are something else. They do not share the same characteristics when you rub them, and certainly "rubs into" very different things. I do like the aroma. Very distinctive. Light to medium strenght tobacco. Not very good in the pipe, if you do not let it dry. So let it dry, at least for 15 minutes or so. After that, easily smoked, quite a nice tobacco. Will I loose sleep over it, no...(There are some blends, if I am near the end of my last tin, I do loose sleep over it:))

Pipe Used: savinelli

Age When Smoked: new

1 person found this review helpful.

zachchandler92 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
zachchandler92 (5)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is definitely the quintessential flake. It's mild, smooth, nutty, and peppery.

Tin note: sweet rum

Room note: nutty, slight spicy smell

Taste: Nutty, peppery, very smooth, slightly sweet

Overall: Wonderful! It lit fairly easily for a flake. It doesn't smoke hot, has a really smooth texture. No real nicotine hit. I really love the flavor. This goes well with both a mild dark rum and iced tea.

1 person found this review helpful.

DrumsAndBeer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrumsAndBeer (203)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

High quality tobacco without a doubt but I don't get much from this mixture. A very slight dry grass & oat like sweetness comes forth on charring light and the honey overtones are noticeable in the aroma. I would never guess that this had any Rum topping whatsoever, obviously MacBaren applied it very lightly. If you are an aggressive puffer, this flake has the potential to fry your tongue. It stays lit pretty well and the smoke has a fairly weighty body to it, but as the bowl progresses it lacks complexity and any favorable flavors fade into an ashy high quality cigarette type taste. A decent enough take on the Navy Flake, but to my taste, nowhere near the best.

1 person found this review helpful.

beaupipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
beaupipe (102)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I'll join the chorus of those who find this a reliable, enjoyable smoke. It's not especially complicated, it's far from rare, and it's a long way from expensive. But there's really nothing exactly like it either. I've been smoking this pleasant, Burley-based tobacco for several years off and on, but in the last couple, it's become a go-to blend in the heat of summer. And there's a lot of that where I live.

Like all MacBaren flakes, this is beautifully presented — thin(ish) medium brown flakes with fairly low moisture content. Despite the MacBaren website's lessons on folding and stuffing flakes, I usually prefer to rub this out. I know that many seem to have problems with bite from this flake and I suppose I did in the past, too. But I now reserve the entire MacBaren line for filtered pipes, where they really seem to shine. I'd rather not deny myself access to this fine smoke because of bite issues, considering how easy it is to kick those issues to the curb.

Sipped slowly, Navy Flake yields some delightful flavors. Depending on the day and the pipe, I might find a little rum essence, a touch of chocolate, black tea with honey, autumn leaves. Whatever the flavor profile, it's always pleasant. Nicotine sits somewhere between light and medium, which is probably another reason I tend to smoke this most often on hot days.

I doubt Navy Flake will ever sit at the center of my pipe smoking bench, but it's nice to have it flitting about the edges ready to be called in while the stars are all being treated for hyperthermia.

1 person found this review helpful.

Doctor Max Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Doctor Max (23)
★★★★
Mild Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

This tobacco I would call mixture's big brother. It has everything I found lacking in the mixture. It is fuller, rounder and a little bit less sweet; very well balanced. It has all the features of Mac Baren tobaccos, from the neat tin and tight slices, to the biscuity notes and malty finish (present here in pleasant quantities!). Tin note is rum-raisin, dried figs, biscuits, hay, slight notes of cocoa and leather. It tastes exactly how you would expect from the tin note, maybe a tad on the drier side (which is not a bad thing). Packs and smokes very will with the fold an stuff method. Smokes cool and nice, I find "Mac Baren Bite" largely a myth. Room note is nutty, rum-raisiny, sweet; quite pleasant. Hard to find any weak points in this tobacco. Pleasant from first light to last puff, very consistent throughout.

1 person found this review helpful.

PipeLover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipeLover (16)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

As a beginner I can say that I was somewhat disappointed that even the best tobaccos don't have the taste I was looking for. Until I tried this one. Most of the top reviews here are for blends with latakia, I can't stand latakia, it smells like burnt tires, and it contaminates everything.

It may be my taste buds, but I love this stuff. I love honey and this blend delivers plenty of that. Some of the more experienced pipers here will probably not agree with me, but I think this stuff is great for beginners and veterans who don't want too heavy of a smoke. And the room note is absolutely delightful, even the non- smokers kept inhaling the aroma. I smoke it daily. I agree with the previous poster that the tin tastes a bit better than the bulk pack. Try it with an open mind, and you will love it.

1 person found this review helpful.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (227)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

It has been a while since I last smoked Navy Flake (long ago when it was available in 50gm tins) and did not feel I would do it any justice by reviewing it from recollection alone. That being the case, I purchased a tin (100gm) and am smoking a bowl as I write this review.

Upon opening the tin, there was a beautiful sweetness emanating from within and very reminiscent of figs. The flakes were arranged in two rows along the long side of the tin and about 1 1/2 times the width of most flakes. They were fairly thin sliced and broke apart very readily upon taking them out from the tin. They were very fresh indeed. Loading was easy and the pre-light draw tasted of sweet honey. It took to the match very readily and provided for a long, satisfying smoke. It never burned too hot nor did it even hint of biting. The taste was sweet, spicy, and dry in nature. The initial tin note that I first detected (figs) and the pre-light draw taste of honey did translate to the smoke and was very delicious indeed.

Many of the Mac Baren's blends have been faulted for being too similar in taste. For me, the differences, albeit subtle at times, are most definitely there. It has taken me a long time to appreciate those differences. I thoroughly enjoy comparing them and I suppose that is one of the main reasons I've been a big fan of Mac Baren blends for nearly 35 years. Mac Baren's blends their offerings as a master composer would take a theme through many of its variations in a symphony. Interestingly enough, I give NF 4 stars but I like it better as an occasional smoke so as not to ruin a good thing! It also is great blended with Wessex Burley Slice 50/50.

Mac's Navy Flake is a good, dependable smoke that I can recommend without reservation. In the right pipe, this really sings!

UPDATE 1-27-13: Some reviewers have claimed rum to be present in this flake. I never have tasted such and according to Per George Jensen of Mac Barens there is no rum whatsoever in this flake...they should know best!

1 person found this review helpful.

the_german Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_german (264)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

Based upon the strength of previous reviews, I bought a 100 g tin of this flake, since I was running low on Richmond Navy Cut and no local tobacconist has that blend in stock.

Upon opening, the tin aroma was full of honey and a touch of rum; not overwhelming, but I cannot resist the comparison: Mac Baren Mixture on steroids.

The slices are half the area of the tin and show an interesting pattern of bright and dark tobaccos. I make it mostly Burley, with enough VA and Cavendish in there to make it interesting. The moisture level on opening the tin was already well- suited to smoking, though some may find it too wet.

Too lazy to rub out the tobacco, I tend to fold a flake and drop it into the bowl. This works best with tall bowls, obviously; my first attempt was in a pan-shaped bowl, and the tobacco had too little room; it burned hot and uncomfortably and turned sour and tarry towards the end. Using tall bowls, this blend is really quite nice; once lit, it'll burn down quietly and comfortably without much maintenance, giving a beautiful Burley taste with the VA and Cavendish prancing around the backstage, the casing practically unnoticeable.

The room note is nice; nothing to write home about, but good, comfortable and agreeable. The VA is more noticeable in the room than in the taste.

Both smoke and taste are even throughout the bowl, and at the very end, there is nothing left but an even, light grey ash.

For those with some experience with medium-strength tobaccos but lacking knowledge of flakes, I think this would make a fine introduction. For me, it's not an all-day smoke, nor a single-shot highlight, but a good, solid tobacco that can be enjoyed in just about any situation.

--update 02-21-2010: From a usually realiable source, I heard this is supposed to be the best-selling flake tobacco on Earth. I have no reason to doubt that.

1 person found this review helpful.

eamonclever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
eamonclever (45)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

To me NF is a highly underestimated flake of good smooking quality and performance. I used to have a tin at home for many years & I never smoked it, because none of my pipe buddies did either. After some enjoyable bowls in my bulldog and also in a canadian style pipe i must say, this is a very distinguished tobacco. It is not bright and gloomy, it is like a perfect companion. Perfect out of teh tin , perfect in the pipe, no question, i just fold twist and stuff the flakes, small flakes so I can adjust to nearly every bowl in question.Easy to maintain once the tobacco is lit properly. No burn on your tongue. Good stuff but not earthshaking.

1 person found this review helpful.

ian0077 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ian0077 (7)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This tobacco comes in a small neat tin in flake form. This is a very nice smooth smoke. I like this on its own but sometimes i prefer a little perique with my smoke.

Instead of using perique try adding some freshly milled black pepper to the bowl as you fill and you will be pleasantly suprised at the completely exotic smoke.

Happy piping to you all.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipe4ever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe4ever (204)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Very Pleasant

Navy Flake , IMO, is the finest burley tobacco ever created; this is a wonderful, delicious burley tobacco, flake cut, mild, smooth, nutty, creamy and semi sweet, I have tried most burley brands, this one is definitely the most enjoyable and the first in my favorite list.

I smoke this frequently and have many pipes dedicated for it, wherever I go, I can always find one opened tin of Navy Flake, at home, in my car and in the office; also I keep few pounds of this in the cellar.

1 person found this review helpful.

Dr.sadik Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.sadik (100)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

perfect example of navy flakes and one of my favorite non aromatics(room note wise, however it is cased so bare that in mind when you want to try it). the flavor is very unique, tasty and full. it packs and burns better if rubber as opposed to fold and stuff due to its relative moisture it comes in. burns cool and taste sweet and end up as thick gray ash. i am a believer in macbaren and this blend is a faith enforcer.

1 person found this review helpful.

Duke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Duke (41)
★★★☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

When I first purchased and smoked Navy Flake I found it necessary to smoke it hard to keep it lit. This resulted in a hot smoke causing bite. Smoked rubbed or not I couldn?t find smoking satisfaction from the tobacco, but I found occasionally a taste I enjoyed, hiding. I smoked it in many different pipes without reward, so I set the tin aside. After five months idle I picked up the tin on a lark, folded a flake and stabbed it into a billiard. What a difference time and/or additional drying makes. It smoked effortlessly and a taste developed and emerged that had once been hiding. A wonderfully simple Virginia Burley blend, with a subtle sweet MacBaren Cavendish component. Navy Flake is a quality tobacco that won?t be on my daily rotation, but is part of my regular smoking arsenal.

This dryer Navy Flake caused me to re-acquaint myself to another MacBaren, the Vintage Syrian, which also dried out quite a bit and it too was good. I guess MacBaren tobaccos, for me, need extra drying to prevent tongue irritation. So now I know how I must approach the MacBaren line.

1 person found this review helpful.

Glorfindel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Glorfindel (80)
★★☆☆
Very Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

Very strong full tobacco taste in a VA flake.

This is NOT an aromatic tobacco - not even close. I give it 2 stars, but those looking for a good "straight up" tobaccco could give it 4 stars easily, I can see why. It just wasn't my thing.

The strong, tangy, grassiness of a young VA dominates the taste with the burley and cavendish being barely noticeable, though it is good they were there. If they hadn't been, this would have gotten 1 star from me - a bit harsh and easily bitey if not babied with slow smoking and gentle treatment.

Not sure what "Navy" means but it certainly has no rum or liquor flavor of any kind.

If I were given a bowl of this as a blind taste test, I would have concluded it a young, grassy, full strength VA flake teetering on the bitey side.

Probably won't buy more, unless its all I can find in pipe tobacco. I've had worse.

2 stars.

1 person found this review helpful.

Than Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Than (17)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is the first flake that I have tried, and I truly enjoy it. Have received compliments on the room note. Smooth with no bite. A Must Try.

1 person found this review helpful.

flyrod6057 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
flyrod6057 (18)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

There's very little I could say here that hasn't already been said. This is a great smoke! Flavor's good, smokes well, not too hot. Recommend!

1 person found this review helpful.

Fofo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fofo (81)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Good stuff. I am not a big fan of burley blends, i find them a bit boring. This blend is good though, easy to pack and light, good flavor, and no tongue bite. I like smoking flakes in my den when i'm reading because i can puff and puff for a very long time.

I like this stuff but I can easily do with one 50gr tin once in a blue moon, just for a change of pace, not the kind that I would smoke often.

1 person found this review helpful.

RickPiatt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RickPiatt (16)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Full Pleasant

This was my first journey into the MacBaren world after four years of avoiding the product line. I previously had tried Mixture, Mixture Mild, Black Ambrosia, and Scottish Mixture hating them all in turn (at that time I was an ardent aromatic smoker). Since that original foray, I've stepped away from aromatics having grown to appreciate a good burley and adore a full bodied virginia. Navy Flake seemed to be a natural progression in my smoking experience. Needless to say, after my previous experiences with those tobaccos listed above I was highly skeptical that this would be much better. Boy, was I in for the happy-man-dance suprise of the century. The mixture of Burley / Virginia with just a touch of Cavindish (to satisfy my old days of cavendish aromatic passion) is heaven in a leaf to me. The rum topping is tastefully done not being overwhelming in any way. For me, a man with a somewhat whimpy tongue (VA's burn the heck out of me regularly) this tobacco needs be smoked bone dry. I notice a slight lessening of flavor by doing this but the change in the way this tobacco bites back is so dramatic that its worth it. Now, this is an every day smoke for me burning wonderfully down to a clean bowl with minimal gray dottle and few if any relights. When smoked dry as I previously mentioned it is biteless! And, it satisfies my desire for a burley blend perfectly. My highest possible recomendation.

1 person found this review helpful.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

This is the best tobacco MacBaren makes. My only regret is the tin is not 100grams instead of 50gms. Highly recommended.

1 person found this review helpful.

SmokingWino Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokingWino (2)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Full Pleasant

It's deceiving as the aroma from the tin is rather different from the actual smoke as it is drier than what the sweetness suggests. Opening the tin and smelling the tobacco, it smells of dried dates - sweet, pungent and acrid.

Upong smoking, it reminds me of a mild Cuban cigar which means it has a nice "full body" of aroma than the normal aromatics. Lovely and firm, though not an exciting room note..

Great anytime of day!

1 person found this review helpful.

Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (304)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

One of the best burley flakes I have tried so far: not as light tasting and grassy as Orlick Golden Sliced (which it reminds), nor as acidic as Kingfisher, nor too nauseating as the very similar in looks and taste (but advertised as "Virginia") Treasures Of Ireland Limerick. It's not very strong tasting: a nice interplay of the herbaceousness of burley with a nice sweet note (not overwhelming, in spite of the pronounced honeyish tin note) that keeps you interested for long. All the flavors stay quite light, and don't require much attention for nuances. At the very bottom of the bowl (especially huge ones), it can become a bit ashy and bitter, but no big fuss. Burning qualities are top notch: as soon as I opened the tin, I was able to remove three flakes for smoking as humidity was perfect, and crumbling them in my Mastro De Paja was child's play (the flakes are soft and thin). A quick light, and it took fire immediately, requiring very few relights and not even a pipe cleaner to remove moisture (in an 80 minutes smoke!). And I didn't find it bitey at all. It may not be the best, most complex, tastiest tobacco out there, but it's good, plain and simple (though I slightly prefer the very similar Mac Baren Navy Mixture). I am not fond of it because it's a bit too light tasting for me, but it's good. At the end, somtimes there's a bit of the "bitter burley" curse.

1 person found this review helpful.

flint Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
flint (30)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

What a quality flake we have here. This rubs out really easy and lights and burns even easier. Honey aroma in the tin and room note. Good smoke for a burley blend, but my all time favorite burley blend is still Barbary Coast.

1 person found this review helpful.

Jaybee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jaybee (77)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Even though I'm not overly fond of burley, this is a nice tobacco. It burns slow and has a mild nutty taste. The flakes are not overly moist, but can powder a bit when crumbled, resulting in a mouth full of dust. The bowl lights easily and retains a nice tobacco flavor from top to bottom. If you like burley it would be difficult to do better than this.

1 person found this review helpful.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Although a true and expertly manufactured and packaged flake, this one is burley based which is a change from my normal VA flakes. I also don't sense any rum topping that is common to many of the 'navy' flakes that I've tried. This blend is much milder that most VA 'navy flakes. It's probably my favorite MacBaren blend and I can smoke it all day without any bite. I don't rub it out but am still able to obtain an even pack and burn rate in various sized bowls. Perfect moisture content right from the tin that results if few relights. No overpowering casing but a uniform, sweet taste from start to finish. The aroma is liked by others so I often pick this blend when in company. Give it a try.

1 person found this review helpful.

tslots Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tslots (8)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Very Pleasant

This is my first time smoking a blend that's mostly Burley. These come in colorful, veined slices with a nice sweet-tobacco aroma. I folded the wafer a few times and stuck it in my fairly new Nording freehand. It lit very easily and burned to a dry white ash. The flavors were slightly sweet with a spiciness that seemed to tickle the back of my throat. While smoking, the body and richness of the tobacco seemed to be toward the fuller end of the spectrum, but there was not much of a nicotine kick ... so I gave it a medium rating overall. I gave a high rating to the room aroma based on my wife's remark of "That one smells good" ... which is high praise from her. Toward the last half of the bowl, I had to relight once and run a pipe cleaner through to correct a slight gurgle. Aside from that, this was an enjoyable smoke.

1 person found this review helpful.

steppx Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
steppx (152)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Very Pleasant

A very smokable burly and cavendish flake. Mildly sweet, cool burning (its best quality in fact) but not very distinctive. I prefer several other Macbaren's to this. My Mixture and Roll Cake and Norwood and even Symphony....i think all have a bit more to recommend them. If you like mild burly with some casing. This is a very popular and much praised flake. I honestly don't quite understand the love this tobacco seems to get. If smoked in a very large bowl...a group 6 or above...the casing with start to coat your tongue. It smells great though....room note is terrific. But its hardly serious stuff IMHO> Still...its a very solid choice as an all day smoke for its class....I guess..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Leo Aldopold Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Leo Aldopold (6)
★★★☆
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

So, with ideas of emulating some craggy, leather-skinned pirate on shore leave in Havana, I bought a tin of this expecting it to be reminiscent of some bygone age of maritime high-jinx. I couldn't have been more wrong. The tin note is much more fruity than rummy, almost bordering on lightly perfumed but with a slight chocolate undertone and grassy notes from the Virginias. The flakes rub out well, but I prefer the fold-and-stuff method for this and the Vanilla Cream Flake and one flake lends itself perfectly to a small to medium bowl. Upon the charring light there is that waft of fruit again, but there is also just a hint of the rum that I was looking for when I bought it. Throughout the bowl the flavour remains consistent as long as you sip it, and it is only through sipping that you really allow the complex flavour to take effect on your palate. It does have a tendency to burn hot if you smoke it impatiently, however, and although I haven't experienced it myself, I can imagine that it could bite the tongue if not treated with quite enough respect. In summary, it's more "Titanic - The Musical" rather than "Pirates of the Caribbean", but I really rather enjoy a bowl of this stuff, and I'll certainly be including it in my regular rotation.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rob73 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rob73 (77)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

One of the right blends for the first experiences with the Virginias and with the flake cut (easy to pack, easy to smoke). There's a flavour added but it's very good for the first smokes in the morning. 3,0/5 in my personal rating system.

Purchased From: La Bottega del Fumatore, Laveno (Italy)

Nobody has rated this review yet.

taima Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
taima (12)
★★★★
Strong Mild Very Full Tolerable to Strong

Wow, glad I tried this out. I've been shying away from flakes... I rubbed it out a bit and put it in my pipe before drying. The baccy lights right off the bat and delivers a pungent, tangy, salty licorice blast! I can detect some earthy notes. The flake burned very slowly and cooly, but unfortunately gooped up a bit near the end. Still, it's a very tasty and pleasurable smoke!

Age When Smoked: day of purchase

Nobody has rated this review yet.

c-hild Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
c-hild (4)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

This is currently my go-to flake. It is a wonderful very smooth yet strong blend with a good amount of burley in it that burns cool, consistently and as is usual for good blends of this type can be easily inhaled, which makes it ideal for mixing. The slightly nutty taste profile is sublime with some hashish or oil, but not being too heavy on the virginia this blend should not be mixed with unrefined cannabis.

The blend has a sort of christmasy aroma with a tin note of mostly raisin and cinnamon. The room note is decent, but I don't smoke it while indoors with non-smokers.

It comes wonderfully dried with no noticable glue, in flakes that rub easy, if you do that.

I typically have several bowls throughout the day. I recommend this blend to every smoker.

Pipe Used: Italian Briar Bent

Age When Smoked: recommend at all ages

Purchased From: Peter Weinig, Bamberg, Germany

Similar Blends: Nothing compares.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipenick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipenick (27)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

There has been lot's talk about this flake. Semi-sweet,burley based with light topping Been smoking this flake on and off for 25 years. Light topping brins out the Virginias,burley nuttiness and black Cavendish some smooth roundness. I usually never rub out my flakes except Gawith's and same goes with this one. Slow puffing as always with MacB's and you'll get a amazing experience.

Pipe Used: Brebbia,Big Ben,Chacom

Age When Smoked: Straight from tin

Purchased From: Local tobacco shop

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mesh Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mesh (50)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is the only Mac Baren blend outside of its HH range that I have always liked. It's not a stout blend but it does have a little bit of body to go with its light honey-like topping and notes of straw, cream, nuts and cereal (the Kellogg's Honey Nut Corn Flakes of pipe tobacco!). It's not the most exciting of blends but nothing to turn your nose up at either. Great as an after-breakfast smoke with some coffee, but not an after-dinner smoke for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kerpap Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kerpap (14)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

This was an instant favorite. I am a huge VaPer/Virginian fan. My regular rotation is SGFVF. I love Orlik red, Erinmore flake, Dunghill flake, Elizabethan, Mac ODF, Three nuns. this is my most favorite rotation. this has become after the first bowl, an absolute favorite. as pipestud said this is a barley dominant flake. The Virginias win through and the flavoring is so subtle and mild. this is one of my all time favorites. it is sliced razor thin, perfect moisture content from the first crack of the tin.

Age When Smoked: fresh out of tin

Purchased From: Local Tobacconist

Similar Blends: Orlik Red, SGFVF, Dunhill flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

GabrielCRT Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
GabrielCRT (94)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

Love at first puff for me. A delicious Va/Bur with Cavendish. The topping really plays upon the natural Virginia, Burley, and Cavendish flavor. A massive honey note dominates with a dark fruit note next. There are several spices here like cinnamon and nutmeg which taste like a spiced rum. The Virginias have a mild hay flavor and the burley is nutty. The flavor from the blend amazes me every time. I have gotten tongue bite from this blend and it unquestionably smokes hot but slow smoking is okay with me.

Edit 3/5/16 - just opened a 15 year old tin. Very dark flakes and a wonderful aroma. All the rich flavor without any heat. It smokes cool, sweet, and complex. Definitely worth aging!

Age When Smoked: Fresh to 15 years old

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SmokeyM Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeyM (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

Wow. And then some. How can a burley based virginia from Macbaren taste so nice? This puts Burley based tobaccos back on my radar. It must be the processing, the selection of tobaccos, the... What the heck, I'll just enjoy it.

Straight from the small tin, neatly arranged, very flexible, the flakes look good enough to chew. Didn't try that though, but they smoke really nice from the tin. No drying necessary. Good natural tobacco taste, with a hint of sweetness, but witout the maple taste of others like Dark Twist.

I bought the small tin for conveniance, but it has stuck with me, I will keep one of these at hand the coming period.

Pipe Used: Peterson

Age When Smoked: fresh

Nobody has rated this review yet.

45committed Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
45committed (4)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

What a nice clean tobacco. A good blend of Virginia and Burley to give you those mild flavors of chocolate and honey. Nice tobacco taste and leaves you satisfied. When it comes to fold and stuff, this is easy as compared to others. True that you must sip, but the reward is just. I feel that I have finally joined the club with Mac Baren because it did take some years to learn their characteristic. Mildly sweet, flavorful, and challenging.

Pipe Used: Briar and meerschaum

Age When Smoked: 6 years

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JustDanD Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JustDanD (9)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This was one of my first purchases years ago when the price was $8 (Don't exactly remember when). I think this is a great blend and a terrific smoke.

Opening the tin gives me a raison type smell. Not strong, just there. The flakes were a unique thing for me back then and I still have very few of those. For me, I simply take a strip, fold in in half twice and shove it in the pipe. Always seems to work and burn well. This is one of the easiest to exhale through the nose, which I tend to do quite often. Since I am not blessed with the taste capability to describe all those flavors, I leave that to other reviewers. What I get is a sweet, but not overly sweet, clean smoke. Its a light, refreshing, pleasant-feeling smoke for when you don't want to be overpowered by taste. The taste is cool, mildy sweet all the way to the bottom of the bowl.

I am definatley keeping a stock of these, though I wish I had purchased more when it was cheaper.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Italo Svevo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Italo Svevo (19)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

When I resumed pipe smoking, I found a box of this which I had left open for about ten years I guess. The first attempt to smoke it, after rehydrating it a bit, failed, it hit my throat badly and I was thinking about throwing it away. But then I tried again with a filter pipe, and much to my surprise, I found it still quite pleasant!

Of course, most of the aromatization now is long gone, the taste is a straight Bu/Va now, but it still has a vaguely sweet smell and taste, pleasant. I agree, it is a good companion outside, and burns well. After all that years, respect!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kunsan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kunsan (76)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a pleasant flake tobacco. Nothing remarkable about it - just easy to smoke and enjoy. Nothing else needs to be said about this one. If you like a pleasant middle-of-the-road virginia/burley flake with just a hint of sweet honey topping, this tobacco will fit the bill nicely. Comes in easy to fold flakes, not too wet or dry. As with most tobaccos this one benefits from being opened then the lid replaced and left to dry slightly for a few days.

A solid, pleasant, medium strength flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Coda Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Coda (33)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This is an excellent flake. The first whiff of the tin is floral, but not lakelandy. It's more like a fresh fruit blossom. I only pick up on it with the first whiff, however. The aroma is one of dried fruit, similar to Dunhill Flake. The flakes themselves have the perfect moisture, and load well in any configuration. The flake burns great, and has a great flavor. I feel this to be one of the more underrated flakes out there. A VaBur blend, Mac Baren Navy Flake is an incredibly satisfying tobacco that comes at a great price...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

HPFlashman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
HPFlashman (9)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

One takes ones chances, the Mrs picked this up as one of three available pipetobaccos at Gardermoen Airport in Norway. Currently, this one, WØ Larsens Old Fashioned and MacBaren Scottish Blend are the stocked items, in regards to pipe tobaccos.

It is a regular flake tobacco, somewhat aromaticed and smell quite wonderfull of plum in the tin. I have experiemented a bit with packing on this tin, doing everything from just the roll&bend via rubbing it out, to clipping the flake with sissors. Every one of these have had its charm, but I think the roll&bend is my favourite for the moment. The first bowl of it hit me quite hard with Vitamin N, but later bowls have been fine.

I find that this tobacco, as well as most other "modern" is somewhat on the wet side when the box is popped and fresh. I dont know if this is to bulk out the weight or if its a strategy by the manufacturer for keeping the tobacco fresh over a longer period of time.

I find that a bit of drying out is quite mandatory to get a non blistering smoke, if one is to get any more than the smallest of sips and avoid scalding ones mouth and not burn the pipe.

The tobacco is sweet in the mouth, burns easily from second light to empty bowl and is quite satisfying. I have 5 flakes left of the initial box and will not hessitate picking up more, even though I normally prefer English blends over aromatics.

Pipe Used: Diverse

Age When Smoked: Fresh from shop

Purchased From: Tax-free shop, Gardermoen Airport

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Colin H Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Colin H (2)
★☆☆☆
Very Mild Very Mild Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This is the first flake tobacco I've tried. The aroma coming from the bag is nice and prompted me to buy it. I smoked it in multiple pipes to see if I might like it more, but found myself disappointed every time. The flavor is mild to the point where it's difficult to taste anything. I also noticed that this particular tobacco left my mouth feeling coated with something, reminiscent of a cheap aromatic tobacco. I assume the casing on Navy Flake is the cause of it. Either way, I would not purchase this again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CTS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CTS (136)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

Very tasty, balanced blend. It all comes together well, with a particularly nice spicy retrohale. No one component overwhelms - the combo just plain works well. Perfect from the tin, with no messy preparation - just fold and go! Burns clean all the way through. 4*.

Pipe Used: Italian Basket 35+ years old.

Age When Smoked: APR 2012 on label

Purchased From: Smokes on Burdick, Kalamazoo, MI

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Durwood Sauls Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Durwood Sauls (9)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

When I first bought this I thought I'd like it. I've had the same tin for almost 5 years now. At first I would break and roll up the flakes as per MacBaren's suggested technique on their website. Initially, it tasted of a miscellaneous topping with a rather nondescript tobacco mixture. When I first got my tin it was way too moist. It has since dried out and I have actually had to re-moisten it because I've had this tin for so long. That should be a testament to how much (or little) I like to smoke this stuff.

I've found that for whatever reason I prefer the taste of a fully rubbed out flake instead. Oddly enough as time has gone by the tongue bite has subsided, a bit. I loosely pack the one pipe that I have reserved for my "aromatics." Mind you I don't smoke anything cased/topped heavier than Navy Flake or Lane's BLWB. Neither seems to ghost my aromatic pipe.

As time has worn on I find this to be a nice mild smoke. The topping has transformed from a bitter honey to a more sweet honey, which is nice in my book. It is definitely not the most flavorful blend I smoke. But now when I'm looking for something unassuming to smoke in the evening with some cheap whiskey and PBR this fits the bill. It's great on cold nights, mindlessly puffing away, drinking cheap swill.

I'm guessing it's whatever MacBaren cased or topped this flake with that turns me off about it. Not having tried other "navy" styles or rum infused blends I can't tell if that's what I don't like about it. I thought for sure the virginia, burley, cavendish aspect would be a winner for me. I adore other blends with a similar mixture, although none of the ones I like are flavored. Maybe it's the Va/Bur ratio, or too much cavendish. Too much of that definitely turns me off.

Tasting note: Although this is a mild blend the flavoring added clashes with quite a lot of drinks and foods. For instance, I figured it would be mild enough to start my day with. It was, however, the honey-like flavor does NOT go well with a cup o' joe. Which to me is odd. Because if it were a rum flavor I would assume it wouldn't be bad with coffee.

Room Note: I think this smells quite nice. It has a sweet tobacco aroma that reminds me that it is an aromatic. The nice part about the smell is that it doesn't seem to linger, not like heartier english blends or more aromatic offerings.

Rating: I can't recommend this one, but I also can't say don't try it. It's sort of a classic. In five years time I've only managed to smoke half of a large tin. I have to be in the mood for this one and it's only becoming the one I reach for because I have so much left of it and it was fairly cheap to begin with.

Age When Smoked: new to several years

Nobody has rated this review yet.

balkan_boy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
balkan_boy (49)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I've purchased a tin of this while I was on "pipe rest" for 4 years. About an year before I started smoking again.
I started with it, and first few bowls were disgusting. I wondered if that's because the tobacco is poor, or I just haven't really gotten into it as I should. Well, it was both. I wasn't accustomed to pipe smoking, after ten bowls was better, but the tobacco is bad. I smoked original choice after that, and few other aromatics, they were better than this. As good as aromatics can be actually.
If you like navy (rum) blends, you may like it. Doesn't bite much, and the artificial aroma is not overwhelming, you can even feel some of the tobacco here and there, but still the artificial chemical flavor stays there. That's one thing that bothers me much about the danish style aromatics. I'd rather smoke cheap american aros that make the tobacco smell like something totally different, than the danish style flavored tobaccos which casing and topping is supposed to enhance the natural flavors of cavendish and VA. In my oppinion, it just adds some artificial flavor, and that's it.
It's neither pure tobacco, nor heavily perfumed which in some cases can be a good thing (Condor for example). It's just some junk, there's tobacco, but ruined, and there's perfume, but only the one that goes along with cavendish.
I don't know, maybe It's just my taste, but if you are predominantly into English/Balkan and VA, VA/Pers, then you won't like it. Maybe you won't hate it as much as I did, but certainly won't enjoy it. One star from me.

Pipe Used: briars

Age When Smoked: 1 year

Purchased From: Moscow

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrDyson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrDyson (129)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I just tried a tin of this. I'm not thrilled, I must admit. It's all right, and I didn't find that it burnt hot, as some others have complained, though it does burn rather quickly for a flake; but I thought it a bit ordinary and lacking interest and "body." As is so often true, the experience of smoking it doesn't live up to the delicious tin note. Not objectionable, by any means, but ... meh. If you want a tasty cased flake, Erinmore Flake or Peterson's University Flake are much better - more substantial - than this, for more or less the same price. Anything called Navy Flake should have more hair on its chest than this; ought to be the kind of stuff Popeye would smoke.

It's well presented, though, and it doesn't need drying or airing: you can smoke it straight out of that handy little tin (though I see that this has not been everyone's experience). Somewhat recommended, I suppose; but not a tobacco I would queue in the rain for. I'll probably smoke it again when the mood takes me, but normally I like something with a bit more character to it.

Update 28 April 2018: I see that the handy little tin has been discontinued, at least in the UK. This is a great pity, I think.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cigarcohiba Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cigarcohiba (30)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

Nice, forgiving burning characteristics. Different tastes linger, woody / hayish, whiskey / amaretto, and at times a "fishy" taste. Nice "numby" mouth aftertaste. Nice "chocolate" bowl smell.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

robsm2013 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
robsm2013 (6)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Great all day smoke - good quality tobacco - stays lit, not too moist out of the tin; not overly complex, flavors lingering in the background - must try

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ap Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ap (57)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Great flake with a nutty and slightly spicy taste and a honey topping, the smoke is light and not very sweet. Solid stuff!! 29/06/2103: i am smoking this one everyday since i tried , and its getting better and better. great all day baccy!!!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Buster Bluth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Buster Bluth (56)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

The quintessential MacBaren. Been smoking off and on for 10 years. This tobacco needs air like all from this company. I leave the tin cover off overnight, put it back on, and then wait a week or two, or longer. Hard to resist the temptation when these beautifully presented flakes are neatly stacked in a square tin with a wonderful aroma. This practice takes off the propensity to bite and enhances burning qualities.

Generally smoke in a pipe that can hold two folded flakes. Some shredded bits on top to get it goin, and you are off.

Starts off sweet and hay like. Slight tang of Va. The sweet honey essence wears off and it becomes a more burley forward smoke by mid bowl. Flavor profile is very similar to other MacBaren product and always consistent from tin to tin. Room note has a somewhat astringent like quality to this smoker. Good and enjoyable to the end if not pushed.

Not a complex one, and a tobacco that can be enjoyed while engaged in daily activities. Great and longer lasting outdoors where those OTC burleys burn in overdrive. 3 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Taraban Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Taraban (9)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Awful, never again! // I can smoke it, I won't buy it // = Quite good, worth trying // * Must-have, I'm happy

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Kilmarnock Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kilmarnock Piper (233)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant

I recently got to try a tin (and a little more!) of this flake in a classic version; if I had to guess (based on some research of course), from between 1986 and 1992. I think it is a good basic flake, but have not had a less well-aged version to compare it to. I prefer the very well-aged MB roll cakes, but this is just fine, and neat to try a classic in an aged version in any case.

Nothing much to say about the smoke itself: it's just a basic VA flake to my tastes, and old Mac Barens give me no problems with bite. Maybe a touch of sweetness to it, MB's honey thing, but just a touch. Mild, pleasant smoke.

Added note: I can taste the rum just a little bit, but this stuff is just too old! Honey, however, has survived mummified pharaohs!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sirchud68 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sirchud68 (58)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant

Just popped my first tin of MB Navy Flake. I've pretty much enjoyed every MB blend I have tried and being in a flake faze at the moment, I couldn't pass this up. 100g at a fair price. Typical flake packaging. Beautiful cut flakes with just about every hue of brown there is. Smell is sweet and sour with a hint of that MB honey top. Fold and stuff 1 slice fits perfect in my Kapet Canadian. Lights easy. Nice, smokable tobacco. I'll drop a few line after smoking the tin. 12/16/14 Edit: I've nailed the smell of this tobacco casing! To me, it smells of south Louisiana Muskedine grapes. Anyhow, I put this blend straight into mason jars when I opened the tin. Smoked it on and of for a few months and pretty much forgot about it. It was ok, but didn't hold my attention very long. I have to say, and this doesn't come as a suprise, that this flake has aged rather well. The muskedine smell is there but doesn't come through the smoke as much as I perceived my first go round. I get more of a natural tobacco taste, which I like very much. I'm going to bump my rating up just a tad. Remember, always jar you tobacco and come back to it later down the road. It's taste might have changed, or perhaps yours have. What a glorious thing...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JustOneforMe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JustOneforMe (28)
★☆☆☆
Very Mild Medium Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

I have now smoked several Mac Baren offerings and will not review them any further since they are extremely not to my liking. If interested in my thoughts about their line of tobaccos then just see my review on Burley London, it pretty much sums up this vapid weed give or take a slight aromatic difference (vanilla, cherry etc...).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

machinebcon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
machinebcon (50)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

The 188th review of a Mac Baren classic will not contain any new information :) This is simply a very good all-day tobacco, bronze-brown flakes perfectly packed in a handy tin, with excellent honey+ketchup aroma. Good quality tobaccos are used here, Burley being the leader with the good-ole Mac Baren Cavendish. Packs easily (I usually rub out lightly), smokes easily, doesn't need the smokers attention at any time, just some tamping every now and then. Be careful, being a MB, the genetic disposition is tongue-bite - though not as bad as their pure VAs. It's not an orgasmatically superb tobacco, but an excellent smoke for the everyday. 3.5 stars - very good performance for comparably low price!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Connoisseur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Connoisseur (44)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

I like a good burley now and then to keep the palate alive and in my opinion, there are few good ones that really tickle my fancy. Mac Baren Navy Flake is not one of them. Unlike London Burley, which has a wonderful cut and taste(albeit extremely mild) the Navy Flake is a touch too dry and quite frankly a little boring. One thing I will say is it is consistent from tin to tin - and I have smoked a few - only because I have been able to secure it at bargain prices from supermarkets in Malaysia,where it is quite common. This is one of the few tobaccos where on several occasions I have discovered almost full tins of this tobacco lying abandonded and dried up at the back of my tobacco "cellar" and various other places.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gunner525 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gunner525 (62)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Gave this flake blend a try this evening. It smokes cool and smooth, though I believe it's mostly a Burley blend as it does have a decent dose of vitamin-N. Seems the Virginia and Cavendish are added in to offset the nic hit of the Burley. As usual with Mac Baren though it's a great quality leaf with just the right amount of flavour. Definately will keep a tin around for an occassional smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bence Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bence (34)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

It was a nice surprise for me that this baccy contains just the right proportions of the components, and its strenght is also exactly for my taste. Prefer it in the colder seasons, autumn and winter. It is a good partner for an afternoon walk, and also perfect for drinking some beer or some wine. Sufficiently sophisticated, but there's no baroque-kind of exaggeration in it. So i recommend it to everyone, who wants a tasty, well balanced daily tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Steden Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Steden (94)
★★★☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Mac Baren's rendition of Navy Flake category is a decent and uncomplicated stuff, the tin smell portends a good amount of sweetness from both the topping and the tobacco, in effect there's a good sweetness but the blend is mild and well balanced, with nutty-honey-molasses notes (typical Mac Baren's mark) and traces of liquor (maybe Rum?). It smokes smooth and cool without bites and gurgles, very friendly. Personally I prefer a fully rubbing but even folded it's a classic “two matches“ tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Käpt`n Cook Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Käpt`n Cook (17)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

The Mac Baren Navy Flake is really a classical Blend. I know and love them for many years. The tobacco slices looks very nice and the tobacco is easy to handle. The flavour is maybe a mix between the typical Mac Baren honey note and a bit fruity like mandarins or oranges. In combination with the nice Virgina/Burley base get the taste a really interesting side. It´s a little bit like a summerday :-) Now you know I like this flake very much and the Navy Flake is my favourite Mac Baren Blend. I smoke it not the whole time, but when I opend a new tin I´m looking forward to pack my pipe, because the Navy Flake brings no surprise. You know what you get - an easy and relaxing smoke

Recommended

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blue Bayou Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blue Bayou (60)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant

Super nice blend that reminds me of old weathered teak planks on a Schooner with slight leather notes....

Nobody has rated this review yet.

spidermonkey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
spidermonkey (9)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Rather new to pipes, I have made the usual progression through syrupy aromatics and wanted something with a reasonable aroma, while giving me a greater tobacco experience. When first opened, the smell of honey is quite strong, but pleasant. After letting a flake or two dry out for an hour or so, they seemed ready to go. The first half bowl or so was strong on honey, which faded to a mild flavoring as the nuttiness came through.

I put this tin aside for about a month and have since come back to it with no special attention paid to cellaring. The honey casing is now quite mild. The smoke has changed dramatically. It curiously leaves a grassy, almost fruity scent in my nose and the smoke has mellowed somewhat when breathed through the nose.

The room note, while nice enough, tends to be a little heavy and lingers for a while. The Mrs. doesn't protest too much, but it's not her favorite.

I will buy this again, but will pay greater attention to cellaring to see how it properly ages.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

fireball Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fireball (36)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

This is OK. It's quite a sweet flake, a bit MacB-bitey (ie it has the same sharp edges as Plumcake, Navy, Va No.1), quite one dimensional after a while, but not a bad straight Va (with added sweetness). Nicely presented, handly little tin and not expensive.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

aadelma Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
aadelma (66)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

Of all the tobaccos in the MacBaren line I have tried, this is the best. It has a very high-quality appearance and presentation. It has the classic Danish aroma and taste which many other Danish tobaccos have, but it is a bit more gutsy due to it's flake format. It's easy to pack, just fold a flake and loosely stuff it in the bowl. The flavor is very nice with the cavendish, Va, and burley seamlessly blended together. It is pretty mono-dimensional, so if you like a dynamic blend, you wouldn't like this, but for idle puffing, it is very satisfying. There are 2 negatives, however, which make this only an occasional smoke for me. First, it can bite at times, though not as much as the other MacBaren products I have tried. Second, while it smells nice while burning, it leaves an after-smoking aroma of a stale ashtray which lingers in the room for an astonishingly long time.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

HokieGeek Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
HokieGeek (23)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Well, this was a decent smoke, although the tin note promised more than it delivered. It had a surprising amount of spiciness but had a pretty good, sweet taste to it. Good room note.

Edit 7/27/2012: Downgrading my first score by one star. I can't seem to really get into this guy. I really want to. It really smells great in the tin but it tastes so bland and at its best it's an OK smoke. I guess it's just not for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Denevei Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Denevei (58)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

There are a lot of different tobaccos called "Navy." Mac Baren's version of a navy flake is primarily a burley, but supposedly also contains Virginia and a cavendish. The tobacco comes in a very small tin, with the flakes neatly packed inside. Some people simply roll a flake or two up and stuff them into a bowl, but I like to rub out my tobaccos. This is a sort of crumbly tobacco, and when rubbed it breaks down pretty easily. It then packs well into a pipe. For most of my pipes, two flakes was just slightly too much tobacco, though one flake wouldn't have been nearly enough.

The tobacco lit easily, and burned very cleanly. There is a slight undertone of spiciness to the smoke, but it primarily has a nutty flavor typical of burly, and is nicely sweet, though not as sweet as the Virginias I usually smoke. I think there is a honey sweetening in the tobacco. The flavor is more one-dimensional than a Virginia, but that's not a criticism, just an observation. The flavor is a good one. My impartial judge stated that the room aroma was more pleasant than the Virginias I smoke, too.

Mac Baren's Navy Flake DGT's well, which is important to me. The smoke stays cool and dry, and the tobacco burns to a nice, gray ash with little dottle at all. The more I smoked of this tobacco, the more delight I found in it, until I realized that it wasn't going to be a one-time purchase – this is a tobacco I'll keep around to provide a nice break from my usual fare.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Arkie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arkie (129)
★★☆☆
Mild Very Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant to Tolerable

As others have remarked, the presentation of the tobacco is wonderful with the foil liner and neatly stacked flakes. The tin smell is one of hay. The room note is okay - you won't get thrown out of the house but you won't get any favorable comments either. It burns a bit hot but it won't bite unless smoked too aggressively. The problem is a lack of flavor. I do like the blend but it is frustrating because it is a bit too bland.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

morphijuana Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
morphijuana (17)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Not my favorite Mac Baren tobacco, but not the worst Ive tried either. From the tin it has a great sweet honey smell and the flakes looked great. The taste... Left me wanting, especially for such an expensive tin. It was rather bland, with an overly sweet taste for my pallet. I'll burn this tin and call it a day I think. Happy smoking!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TK Pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TK Pipe (101)
★★☆☆
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

MB Navy Flake... With so many Navy, this and that, to choose from, this is one I never got around to trying, so I added a tin in my last on-line order. Tin aroma is real nice, and the flakes are just beautiful, but I just can't get into its smoking qualities. Just not my kind of blend, sums it up pretty good. Add to that I was hoping for something with more manners, this one wants to bite, and leaves me with an unpleasant mouth feel during the smoke.

Many favor this blend and will disagree with my opinion. To them I say, thats OK, after all this is only my opinion, yours will no doubt vary. My findings were gathered from plowing thru a single (seemed huge) 100 gram tin. I'm glad it's over. My personal rating 1/5, because I'm in the minority here, somewhat recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

WmZiggy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WmZiggy (76)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

A lovely flake, thinly sliced with an elegant presentation in the tin - one of the best I have seen. I left the lid off overnight to dry the tobacco to my liking. It smokes wonderfully with a subtle sweetness and mellow notes. No bite and well behaved. MacBaren hits a homerun with this flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Burner Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Burner (8)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

Lovely tin aroma of raisin and honey. Flakes are golden brown in colour and seem to be just right in terms of moisture. Loads easily and behaves impeccably in the pipe. Burn is particularly good requiring relights only when one isn't paying attention. Lovely smooth flavours echoing the tin aroma develop nicely throughout the bowl with no bite. A real go to when you need a dependable and thoroughly enjoyable smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Old Schoolr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old Schoolr (12)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Looking thru my reviews I find I've neglected reviewing MacBaren Navy Flake. This is one of my favorite tobaccos. I use the MacBaren "Fold & Roll" method when the tobacco is still moist enough to fold. When it dries out & is no longer foldable I rub it out a bit. This is one of the few tobaccos I've smoked dry as last Fall's leaves & still enjoyed the flavor. It has a good room note & the taste is a balance of the Va., burley & Cavendish w/ each playing it's part & not overpowering the others. Navy Flake is a "premium" aromatic & is more of an everyday smoke than their Vanilla Cream Flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ELF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ELF (40)
★★★★
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

ONE OF THE BEST"Navy-Flakes"ON THE MARKET!!!Haven't been able to get this in Canada;for over 5yrs(just finished my last tin). .It also Cellars Well...Very mild,long as you don't get in a hurry...RELAX And Enjoy :+))

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dk-piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dk-piper (25)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Tolerable

A solid unsophisticated flake-tobacco by MacBaren. Buy a tin, grab a flake, fold and twist, load the pipe and smoke away. better sip away. It can taste like burnt rubber if smoked too hot. Tobacco has typical sweet honey & raisins smell. Quite a sweet smoke. I give it 3,5 Stars!!!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

babysinister Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
babysinister (51)
★★★★
Mild Mild Medium Very Pleasant

NF appears out of the tin to be deceptively "dry," so I air it out for a day or two after opening a new tin. (Some even prefer to smoke it very dry.) The flakes tend to come apart, so to prep them for the fill I just rub them out a bit. This tobacco also benefits from several forms of DGT: filling in the bowl the night prior to smoking it, or smoking just a little bit of it and then DGT'ing overnight. The very beginning of the bowl may be a bit underwhelming, but then it really takes off for me as a low-key, nuanced and flavorful smoke - not a nic powerhouse. And that is precisely what I like. This is basically Mixture Scottish with a slightly stronger hint of the trademark honeyed flavor floating above the excellent Virginia and Burley tobaccos.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Susanna Hoffs Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Susanna Hoffs (74)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Bit dissaponted I'm afraid with this one..

Popped the tin to find a very nice gold wrapping that contained VERY bright coloured and quite dry flakes. Smell from the tin immeadiately reminded me of Gold Block...

If I'm honest I found it smoked and tasted like MB's Vanilla Cream, apart from you had a honey aroma instead of a vanilla one..

I think people who don't smoke Gold Block anymore (in case someone finds out that they do!) smoke this as a 'screen' to hide their shame of liking GB!! Which wasn't really that bad anyway..

Wasn't overly unpleasant.. Just typically Macbaren.

=UPDATE 02/04/10=

Was overly harsh with this blend. After several bowls and time to get to know it, this is a really nice blend.

I don't detect any rum at all, but I do get a smooth 'wheaty' honey aroma tobacco that burns well, and is also well presented in gold wrapped paper and a neat tin.

Apologies McBaren, upgraded to 3 stars..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

juanocp Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
juanocp (11)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Mild tobacco is the way to describe the flake. I supposed it´s the burley in action. It burns to a white ash, the honey smell from the tin is present but it's pretty deep, burns cool and it´s pretty much enjoyable. I guess the perfect way to describe these one is those kind of tobacco that´s good to pass the time. I dont think i will return to it, the prince does the job in the burley department for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

The masterful blending of rich lemon Virginias with high quality burley and the subtle flavoring provided by Cavendish has turned MB Navy Flake into my favorite "regular" mixture. I'm absolutely surprised about the total lack of tongue bite, since even the high quality Mac Baren tobaccos (i.e. Dark Twist Roll Cake) bite my tongue like no other baccy ever did. Add to that the woodsy taste and the subtle tang and sweetness from excellent virginias, and you've got a smoke to enjoy any time of the day.

The flakes are also beautiful. Thin and with the perfect moisture level, it's the easiest to light and keep lit flake tobacco I've tried. In fact, thanks to its combustibility, Navy Flake is not much of a Navy Flake at all. I've smoked this mixture at sea and unless you put a cap to your pipe, you better get a big bowled pipe or you'll be smoking at deck for twenty minutes. Your pipe won't suffer thou, because no matter how fast it burns, it does it really cool.

I can no longer say all Mac Baren's bite beyond any pleasure they can provide. Navy Flake has entered my permanent rotation of tobaccos and it's there to stay.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipe_organist Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipe_organist (14)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I bought this as a comparison test to their Mixture Flake.

This blend has the signature tin aroma of fruitiness like raisins or plums (and a hint of chocolate).

I prefer to smoke flakes like this fully-rubbed out, and that's how I've been smoking these. The flakes are firm and semi-brittle, and rub out nicely. They pack well this way, with easy lighting and an even burn throughout the bowl.

The flavors are mild and slightly sweet, but lack the honey and biscuit flavors found in Mixture Flake. It's still a nice, mild smoke that delivers a decent amount of nicotine without bringing weakness to the knees.

I certainly will finish this tin, although I'm undecided about restocking it, and I'm more inclined to favor Mixture Flake over it. Nevertheless, it's a good, high-quality 'baccy from McB, and I recommend it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Skando Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skando (187)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

UPDATE FEB16/2009:

I have "worked" the second half of the second tin (a third is aging in my cellar) laying for months. The flakes were very dry... but absolutely no bite and no bitter back-flavour. I do reconfirm: the best of McB's. Will stack other tins.

ORIGINAL REVIEW:

For sure the best McBaren. I have tried several of their 100grms-tinned products available on the italian market, and this is the only one really deserving three full stars (cannot give four, that's for the excellence...). A perfect all-day smoke because it has very good quality tobacco flavour, just a bit sweet. Unlike other McB's it doesn't scorch your tongue, nor fatigues the palate. The cut and the humidity are perfect and make easy to fill your pipe just folding the flake. This way it will no way leave the pipe wet. I have not tried it rubbed out, nor I'll do since it stays so well lit and refreshing! Just finishing this tin through a small prince by Castello, I'm going to catch the couple of tins remaining at my nearest tobacconist, since it's not so easy to find. I would also give a new try to Dark Twist (I did the latest a year ago), maybe the only other McB to compete with NF. Forget Latakia Blend & Solent Mixture, and so many doubts to Plumcake, which is so different and weak in respect of the old version in 50grms pouch I smoked in the late 70's: that was an aromatic, what is this new one ???

Nobody has rated this review yet.

orka Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
orka (64)
★★☆☆
Very Mild Mild to Medium Very Mild Pleasant

Here we have a pretty much standard Mac Baren formula in flake form, which does work pretty well. Airing time (months) was required for me to get past the boring dullness I first experienced (not unlike many others that have reviewed it, it seems). Additional airing time before and after packing is also standard procedure, after which it does burn easy, treats your tongue gently and fills the room with a pleasant "old school" aroma, the downside is that it generates quite a lot of moisture, so have a cleaner or two ready. Predominantely burley and va cavendish, with the usual honey, nuts and chocolate notes you've come to expect from Mac Baren are there, as well as very light rum flavour somewhere in the middle of it all. I'd say this is a very good beginner's flake, especially if you're into the traditional danish thing, and willing to dedicate quite a lot of time to get the flakes "just right".

I decided to rate this as 2/4, simply because I don't find myself smoking it very often. Its rather one dimensional mildness and less-than-exciting nicotine content puts it in the 2 star section of my book. There is also a bit of tediousness involved in getting it right - a common trait with most Mac Baren's blends.

As a whole, however, I believe the general rating of 3 that it has now is welldeserved. It has a loyal following, good price and easilly accessible to both newbies and oldtimers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

p4p4 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
p4p4 (59)
★★☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

good taste.....but is the classic MacBaren taste. When you have smoked one MacBaren blend....you have smoked every MacBaren blend !

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Ranger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ranger (64)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

The last MacBaren I smoked was Dark Twist on Captiva Island. I remember liking it very much. This reminds me of that feeling, except it burns longer with the flake cut. Packed it just as recommended on the Mac website, perfect burn with only one or two matches. Great taste after it gets going. I found no bite at all. Great price, taste, burn, aroma, packaging, what's not to like?

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Croaker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Croaker (13)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a moderately-bodied cased Virginia-Burley. The nicotine strength is unremarkable and it can't be smoked quickly. The casing is more like a sweet rum-based cocktail than the straight rum flavor often associated with navy flakes. The tobacco has a sharp yet somewhat pleasant aroma. My bulk sample came at the right moisture level for smoking. The flake is hard to rub-out to a ribbon; however, it has very good burning characteristics partially rubbed out or folded.

I disagree with most of the reviews here. I found Navy Flake possess an unremarkable sweet aromatic and natural tobacco hybrid flavor. Moreover, this blend ALWAYS bites my tongue. Navy Flake is certainly not horrible; if it didn't bite my tongue I would give it two stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pseudo Nim Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pseudo Nim (110)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Bought a tin of this a couple of years ago and it took some effort on my part to plough my way through the whole thing without throwing it away. I assummed this was due to my return to flakes, having spent a number of years on aromatics. Having spent the last couple of years or so sampling a good number of flakes, I was tempted to give Mac B's Navy another try, only to be told by my tobacconist he was out of stock, I did however, come across a sample of Navy Flake some weeks later, which I duly tried only to be dissapointed by a distinct caramel / honey taste which is not what I expected from a Navy Flake. Again, I left this alone for some weeks and fired up a bowl just as I started to write this (with the intention of reminding myself as to just what I'm bitching about) the tobacco has now the charecteristics of rubbing out cornflakes, this pleases me not, it does however seem to smoke a lot better, but I like my tobacco straight from the tin, slightly moist and pliable, and there are so many excellent flakes out there which can be smoked in this way. This one, sadly for me, is not one of them. I will not say that I will not buy this one again, I might, but with the view to leaving it for a couple of years. I therefore feel that I must disagree with my esteemed and distinguished company and give it only two stars, which is one more than I had originally intended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SmokeKing David Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeKing David (123)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

This flake seems quite similar to Mixture Flake, which I also really enjoy. I echo the positive comments of my predecessor raters.

But, although named "Navy Flake", I do not detect a whole lot of rum. Maybe just a little, with the MacBaren honey as well. The aromatic essence of this blend tails off at about the two-thirds mark, whereupon the natural burley and virginia ease in to the forefront.

Not overly aromatic, not too sweet, and not a bite in the bowl. Not for fans of English/Balkan blends unless you are looking for a sweet change-of-pace...if you are, then this is one to consider. If you are looking to "step up" to a more sophisticated aromatic that isn't just goopy candy, then this is one you can confidently select.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Slow Triathlete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Slow Triathlete (48)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Mild Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

I would say to save your money with this one. I had higher expectations for this one and loved the tin aroma but unfortunately the tobacco didn't have much taste to me. Also, the vanilla-like aroma disappeared after being lit for a few minutes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Light Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Light (7)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Full Pleasant

You can go two ways to enjoy this tobacco, either rubbed out or smoked as a flake should be smoked. I tried both and do not recommend rubbing it out, it changes the taste dramatically and not for the better.

Mac-Baren?s take on how to fill your pipe with flake:

http://www.mac-baren.com/TopMenu/Expert-Knowledge/Flake-Tobacco/How-to-fill-a-pipe.aspx

The tin looks nice and on opening it, a nice fruity smell awaits you. The tobacco is nicely stacked in big thin flakes. The humidity level is good but drying it in the tin for a couple of days makes it smoke even better. I packed my pipe with the above technique topping it off nicely with a bit of rubbed out tobacco to ease the lightning process. Very few relights are needed.

The first bit of the bowl tastes very sweet, honey like with hints of fruit and gradually the fruitiness seems to disappear throughout the smoke bringing out some nutty tones. Not a complex smoke but enough to keep you interested. Overall to the end a very nice sweet and nutty aroma but different than any other burley I have tried.

I felt not tongue bite whatsoever, light on the nicotine and the room note is very pleasant. In short I feel this is a good afternoon smoke that?s worth every penny. It?ll be on my regular rotation.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dubinthedam Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dubinthedam (133)
★★★☆
Strong Strong Full Very Pleasant

I just had to post a review on this one. Great, great tobacco, it has begun a personal quest to find equally great flakes. Plums, a little rum and a great natural sweet tobacco taste. I smoke outdoors mostly so it is good on the burning side. My lack off experience can not give me the true words to describe how fantastic this tobbacco is.

I tried peterson's university flake, hoping it would be as good, also great but it is more expensive than Navy F and doesn't have the same level of fruitiness as Navy. This too me is the perfect balance between a real tobacco experience, with the sensual joy of a sweet mild aromatic included. I now know why men went to sea in wooden crates. My main down point would be it's a bit dry and dusty sometimes.

TIP: Do check the Mac Barens website to see the history of and technique for smoking such flakes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipepundit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipepundit (168)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

I have been smoking some indifferent aromatic blends recently (kindly gifts from non-smokers). What a relief to open a tin of Navy Flake!

The tin is fifteen years old, and the flakes have darkened substantially, with only a few gold highlights. The aroma from the tin is muted and the flavouring reticent. In the pipe it is immensely satisfying: reasonable levels of nicotine, a steady burn rate ideal for handling my paper work, lovely tobacco taste, and a room note that makes visitors linger.

Mac Baren do not always get full credit for the quality of their products. Perhaps they have tried to cover too much ground with a limited palette. Navy Flake and Mixture Scottish Blend are gems of their kind and unreservedly recommended for a serious trial.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Darth 69 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Darth 69 (107)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Quite possibly the best burley blend on the planet! I consider this blend to be amoung the most refined and excellent in it's respective class. A flake consisting of lightly cased burly as a base, with that characteristic mild honey tinned aroma, with a touch of virgina and that one of a kind dark-fired cavendish that is characteristicly Mac Baren. Smokes dry with a mildly sweet and aromatic aroma and with a lightly sweet and nutty taste. The blending and production of this product is to say perfect and superlative. Recommended! Recommended! Recommended!

P.S.- In the movie "The Marathon Man" with Dustin Hoffman and Sir Lawrence Olivier towards the end when Doctor Zell's suitecase opens one can briefly glimpse a tin of Mac Baren Navy flake among others.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

haredawg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
haredawg (47)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

If I didn?t have such a wanton and promiscuous palate I could almost smoke this exclusively. I?ll admit to being a sucker for Virginians and light burley blends. I judge English blends by the Virginian taste to them, the beating heart of the oriental/latakia English blends. I could laud the virtues of this flake, the presentations, the ability to buy it in bulk locally at a reasonable price, the rubbability and foldability, the adequate nicotine hit.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DoctorThoss Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DoctorThoss (146)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is a good middle-of-the-road that should be appreciate by both burley fiends and light aromatic smokers. The packaging and cut are classic, and this tobacco has superb burning qualities. The flavoring is applied in just the right amount and it seems to do well in just about any size pipe. It's also one of the few burley-heavy blends that I think smokes better in a briar than in a cob (there are lots of burlies that do well in either, but IMO most of them don't really "sing" until you smoke them in a cob). This isn't one of my favorites, but lots of people swear by it. My one real complaint is that it bites more than a burley-based tobacco should. Recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

romaso Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
romaso (43)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

This is a good quality tobacco, but a bit too bland for me- the burley isn't very interesting, and the Virginia not strong enough to off-set the bland burley.

If you want a tasty traditional Navy blend, try the McClelland Navy Cavendish, a dark brown Virginia with dark rum, a great winter outdoor smoke!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cell biologist Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cell biologist (21)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Very Pleasant

I am relatively new to pipe smoking, and this was the tobacco that got me into this pipe-smoking business, in combination with some Laphroaig ? it goes very well with whisky. Also with coffee in the morning. This tobacco smells marvelous in the tin, and its room note has won many favorable comments. The first light is rich and flavorful. There is a mild topping that contributes favorably to the tin smell, first light, and room note, but that flavor seems to saturate the senses and becomes imperceptible to the smoker after about the first third of the bowl. The tobacco doesn?t build flavor in quite the same way as a Virginia flake, but it is consistently good all the way through the bowl. I like the nutty contribution of burley in this flake. It goes well in a variety of bowl shapes and smokes well rubbed out, cut with scissors, or simply folded and stuffed into a tall narrow bowl.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipesmoking101 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipesmoking101 (62)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Mild Very Pleasant

The first and - so far - only MacBaren tobacco I have smoked. This was pleasantly mild in flavour with a satisfying strength which is instantly detectable. The thick flakes fold well into a firm plug which burns well. The smoke itself is smooth & the room note is mild indeed. I would recommenend this pleasant smoke to any pipe-smoker, from novice to expert. The honey notes are absolutley heavenly & the leathery nuttiness underpinns it nicely. I smoked it in a large Churchwarden & found it no have no real negative qualities apart from the occasional bowl which finished & left me with a kind of 'is that it?' feeling, but this can easily be remedied by another pipefull! This feeling was possibly enhanced by the lack of any room note with real body. I will definitely keep some of this around & am looking forward to smoking some of this with a cold beer in the height of summer. I think at that time, this may well come into a class of it's own. Watch this space to find out if my prediction is corect...

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BigSwede Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BigSwede (80)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A cool, mild, dry, comfortable smoke with a (mostly) smooth burley taste and an understated honey sweetner. One of my favorite of the MacBaren clan. I've so far avoided the much discussed "curse" of tongue bite and after some experimentation I would make two recommendations that others have noted as well. One: break it up as little as possible, I smoke this by folding one flake over on itself and packing it into the pipe, then adding a little broken flake to get things started. The only time I've had problems with this blend was smoking a fully rubbed out bowl: tasted great but left me with a tingling tongue. Two: smoke this as slow as is possible. The flavors seem to come out richer and more fully and it's a more tolerable smoke. Highly recommended.

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SopwithCamel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SopwithCamel (255)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is beautifully made, and the packaging is very nice. In the tin, the aroma is overwhelmingly honey. I let this stuff sit until it was almost crunchy. Finally the honey flavor is tamed down enough to let the nutty burley, and sweet anise like Virginia come through. There are similar blends that are better, and cost less to boot.

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UncleGar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
UncleGar (110)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Very Pleasant

I like MacBarens. This is what I like to call a pseudo-aromatic, one of their sweeter blends. I have a hard time nailing down just what burley tases like (distinct from Va or cav) that is defining, but I do like all MB burleys, their specialty. A less sugary version of this is Burley London Blend, their finest, I think.

The tidy tin, efficiently and precisely filled and the embossed gold foil wrapper makes for my favorite of all packaging. Normally I overlook this kind of thing, but it's hard and unfair not to appreciate it.

I love the aroma: maybe burleys are what a beloved person from my childhood smoked. This is my benchmark of what a pipe should smell like. I probably inhale far too much of it, deeply sniffing as it drifts out of my mouth.

I like mild tobaccos. Nicotine tends to numb my tongue, leaving only harsh flavors and ammoniacal (pee) aftertastes. No problem here, despite a 3 out of 4 rating on the tin, and despite my nasal recycling. Bite is a function of technique for me; I like to smoke very slowly when I got a good one. MBs respond well to this. The moisture level of the tin allows me to do that without drying, a big plus.

A virginia blend analogous to this is Old Belt Ready Rubbed, another favorite of mine for many of the same reasons.

My only complaint with NF is a mild perique-type mouth reaction I get, otherwise it would be my standard sweet smoke. Oh, the hell with it... I'm refilling anyway.

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Danno Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Danno (102)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium Full Pleasant

I found this flake to be surprisingly stout-not what I what expecting from what seems to be a rum and burley mixture. Smells great, tastes ugly. The MacBaren curse, the bitten palate,slapped me the next morning. I'll leave this to the sailors...

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