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A mixture of fully ripe Virginia tobaccos, sliced, cask mellowed Burley tobaccos, dark spicy Cavendish and just a touch of Latakia. To give Plumcake an elegant aroma the blend has been flavoured with aged Jamaica Rum.

Notes: Introduced in 1957.

BrandMac Baren
Blended ByHenrik Halberg
Blend TypeEnglish
ContentsBurley, Cavendish, Latakia, Virginia
FlavoringPlum, Rum
CutRibbon
Packaging100g Tin, 16oz Bulk
CountryDK
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
BnB Tobacco
4noggins.com
Iwan Ries
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Strength
Mild to Medium
Flavoring
Mild to Medium
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant

Favorite Of 21 Users

2.8
212 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
51
3 star:
96
2 star:
42
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Big Nick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big Nick (72)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Plumcake is a real pain in the @$$, more specifically, a pain on the tongue. I'm really disappointed because I love the way it smells, I love the way it looks and I really love the taste, but its a Pitbull. It bites and it doesn't let go. As soon as the great flavors develop one more good puff and you're torched and I mean torched hard. The trick is to puff gently through the whole bowl, but I can't do that. The flavor is so good that inevitably I will hit it too hard and burn a hole through my tongue. With Plumcake patience is the master, and I don't have enough of it. Maybe one day when I'm old and tired I can master this stuff because really, it does smell and taste great. As for now I just don't have the patience and discipline required to enjoy Plumcake.

By all means, if you can drive 25mph in a 25mph zone, then Plumcake is for you. If you can drive 55mph on the freeway (stay out of the left lane), then Plumcake is for you. If you enjoy watching paint dry, Plumcake is right up your alley. But that's not me.

Original review above 1/6/09

Update 9/13/09, After reading a review from dk-piper stating that he always uses a charcoal active filter and thus has never suffered from Plumcakes notorious and crippling tongue bite, I gave it a try. Well, dk-piper is absolutely correct ! I just smoked a bowlful of Plumcake and for the first time ever I suffered NO tongue bite and was able to finish the bowl. Ah ya, it was sweet smokey and tasty. The draft was a little restricted and the strength was considerably milder due to the 9mm charcoal filter, but finally I can now enjoy the flavor of Plumcake !

Upgrade from 2 stars to 3 1/2, Thanks to dk-piper and Tobaccoreviews.com

11 people found this review helpful.

matthieuduquette Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
matthieuduquette (12)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Plumcake is a unique latakia mixture that bridges the gaps between aromatic, english, and balkan mixtures very successfully and is best enjoyed slowly. The room note is a delight not often found in latakia mixtures.

In the tin. Plumcake has a wonderful bouquet that reminds me of a whiff of quality scotch. The latakia smokiness and bright rum spice notes play so well together that they are nearly inextricable as to where one ends and the other takes over.

In the pipe. This blend is great when sipped. Yet as many have mentioned. Will be harsh if you prefer to not take your time. There is no real trace of the rum casing while smoking. Though I feel it does give you the slightest sweetness on the back of your throat The latakia is mild but ever present. It is more in the category of a balkan style mixture in my opinion but the smokehouse note of the latakia is much more present than the usual balkan.

The basics for a good blend are all here. Perfect moisture level right out of the tin. Smokes cool and dry. Packs and lights easily with few to no relights. Only thing again. As with most balkanesque mixtures. Sip it slowly or it will not only be far less pleasing as far as taste but will also bite you ferociously. You want to stretch a bowl out for well over an hour. The ember should be small and constantly shifted and every draw should be as if on the verge of going out. Slow and steady here ladies and gents.

The room note is the key to this blend. It has the trademark richness and boldness of a latakia mixture but there is a definite top note here that is very sucrose-sweet. This is yet another experience you will miss if you smoke fast. This would perhaps be the most "tolerable" room note I've come across in a latakia mixture when it comes to non-smokers being present... If smoked slowly!

Plumcake is a blend that will really make you learn to appreciate sipping your pipe. Yet for most beginning and intermediate smokers the true complexity will likely be left unnoticed because of this very reason. As they do tend to be guzzlers.

Pipe Used: Rusticated strawberry bent basket pipe

Age When Smoked: 1-3 months

Purchased From: Sutliff Tobacco Company

Similar Blends: Dunhill Early Morning Pipe, McClelland Frog Morton Cellar, Peterson Irish Oak.

9 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (695)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

A tasteful mixture with several flavors going on in the smoke. There's just enough latakia to add a slight smokey note. The rum flavoring is very mild, and is a team player with the dried fruit and plum taste. The burley is lightly sweet without the nutty flavor often found in the leaf. The Virginia is mild and lightly sweet, too, and is complimented by the cavendish. Some people claim this tingles your tongue, but I think that's a matter of individual body chemistry and/or poor smoking habits, e.g., puffing like a freight train. I just don't have that problem. It's a mild to medium semi-sweet blend to be savored for full enjoyment.

9 people found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (263)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

A rather strong tobacco for a Mac Baren, Plumcake seems to be a crossover between the traditional Mixture and a navy flake, to a great extent due to its Jamaican rum topping. In any case, it is an example of the apparently endless Virginia-Burley-Cavendish variations common to many Mac Baren blends. This one also has some Latakia, which I have yet to identify amongst the rum and the dark fired Cavendish.

Personally, I find that the predominant flavour in Plumcake comes from the Burley, a tobacco that tends to absorb and enhance any added savouring agent. The Virginias are there all right, but again, they tend to be subdued by the stronger Cavendish leaf (probably made from Virginias as well, but with a bitter-sweet edge).

In my experience, this blend benefits from overnight airing, as it comes rather moist in the tin. A nice mixture of ribbon cut brown and reddish leaf, with some black strands, it should be packed rather loosely. You might find it slightly difficult to get it going, and should leave some time between the initial charring light and the smoking proper. Due to the high sugar contents (not only from the Virginias and the Cavendished leaf, but from the rum also), this blend can burn pretty hot, so it should be to your tongue's advantage if you take things slowly.

Plumcake's flavour is not one I particularly like, although there is enough tobacco taste to make it an enjoyable, if intermittent, smoking experience. The sweetness of the blend is present throughout the bowl, and there is also a hidden spiciness, an almost piquant peppery undertone (could it be the Syrian Latakia?), that mingles nicely with the natural taste of the tobacco.

If smoked properly, this blend can last a long time and it leaves a nice and rich natural sweetness in the palate; not being an aromatic proper, this aftertaste does not linger on, and the pipe can be easily cleaned, leaving virtually no trace of the rum and sugar. I hear this is a very popular Mac Baren, and rightly so. But withtin this vein, I much prefer Navy Mixture (oddly enough with no added rum). 03/05

7 people found this review helpful.

cajomu Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cajomu (19)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Mac Baren's Plumcake is one of my favorite tobaccos. As someone who smokes mostly VaPers but who also likes Latakia, I appreciate the combination of sweetness and smokiness that Plumcake delivers. While not a big fan of Burleys, in Plumcake its nuttiness is a perfect accompaniment to the other tobaccos. And, for me, that's what makes Plumcake unique, it delivers the best of all three types of tobacco in goodly measure and proportion. While supposedly flavored with rum, I don't detect it (truth be told, I've never tasted rum in any tobacco that claims to have it).

At the beginning of the bowl, the Virginias predominate and Plumcake can be quite sweet. As you progress through the bowl, the Latakia and finally the burleys come to the fore. However, the best qualities of all three are present at all times. The flavor also becomes increasing fruity so that the last few puffs are the best.

Be warned that Plumcake can bite if you puff too hard, but the main reason to smoke it slowly is to enjoy the variety and richness of the experience.

Plumcake contains just about the right moisture level as delivered (I dry mine out a little), is easy to pack and light and is relatively inexpensive if purchased in bulk.

Pipe Used: Various briars

Age When Smoked: Recently purchased

Purchased From: JR Cigar

6 people found this review helpful.

Jdor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jdor (13)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

I loved this blend. It was my door to the english side of the force hehe. When I opened the tin I smelled the spicy orientals with a hidden aroma (i would say raisins or rhum, not sure cause it's very subtle). It tastes great and the latakia gives a nice finishing touch. It's an all day smoker, and burns cool. I had to re-light only once, which was nice too.

5 people found this review helpful.

BigNick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BigNick (36)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Very Full Pleasant to Tolerable

What a blend! A mix of English and aromatic in the most simplistic of ways. Sweet and tangy plumb with a slight smoky kick...the smoke is amazing. There is one downside however; the clean up. It makes a mess out of a pipe. One will require a plethora of pipe cleaners after a smoke, it gets gooey quick. Apart from that the tobacco is wonderful.

Pipe Used: Millard, Butz Choquin bistro

Age When Smoked: 1month

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

5 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1005)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Full Very Pleasant

This is a famous blend. It is very unusual and powerful on the tongue and palate. A slow burning rate brings the best out in this tobacco. A fast burn is not so good.

New pipe smokers should look elsewhere until they are out of diapers. Veterans with leather tongues can smoke this stuff all day, I guess. As for me, a 30-year pipe smoker who has had this blend many times over the years, I'll smoke it in the evenings on occasion just for a change of pace.

Finally, despite the name, this blend does smell and taste like tobacco. And yes, it has an unusual plum flavoring that is subtle enough to keep the true pipe man satisfied.

5 people found this review helpful.

rekamepip Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rekamepip (78)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Full Pleasant

Mac Baren Plumcake Navy Blend Made in Denmark by Mac Baren Tobacco Imported by Sutliff Tobacco Company

Virginian, Burley, Cavendish, Syrian Latakia

Tin Note: Rich but not overpowering Fruity / Plum and Rum Aroma on top of a good tobacco smell Moisture content is a little wet right out of the tin but really it depends on what type of pipe and how you pack the bowl Nice cuts of tobacco leaf ready to load

Smoking: I really like the all around flavor profile of this PlumCake. In all of the pipes i have used the tobacco does burn well and tastes great but i have yet to master the art of matching it up with the perfect pipe and loading it in such a manner to get that awe inspiring moment. This tobacco tends to burn a little on the warm side.

Room Note: Wonderful !

Overall My 5 Star Rating = 3.5 maybe 4 if i match it up with the perfect pipe

Pipe Used: Pipestone Rock Cob, Corn Cob, Clay and Briar

Age When Smoked: new

Purchased From: pipesandcigars, 4noggins, jrcigars and sutliff

4 people found this review helpful.

doc'spipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
doc'spipe (196)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

First I would like to say that the current Plumcake is not the same as what I remember from the late 1970s. There was a much stronger, and very appealing, tin aroma that was one of the main attractions for me. This always translated into the smoke as well, but less so with the current fare. Although a good smoke, the present incarnation pales by comparison. According to Mac Baren, they have not changed the recipe, but something sure has changed.

Very similar to Scottish Mixture but a bit more stout in strength and flavor - and that wonderful tin aroma and roomnote that makes Plumcake stand out from other Mac Baren offerings makes it a winner (although not as good as from tins of old). I think the "plum" in the description is meant to represent the Latakia present in the blend. I tasted the Latakia upon lighting and it remained very much in the background while smoking, However, it presented itself in a very nice, musty-pipey sort of way. Not like the typical Latakia taste so common to English mixtures. This ever present subtlety acted as a very nice "tease" that leaves you excitedly waiting for more. As a result, the Latakia presence is so different, yet subtle, that I am sure it would not offend (a good thing as I am not a fan of Latakia). It is truly used as a condiment here and not as a key player. It mixed exceptionally well with the light honey casing that I detect. I honestly could not taste any presence of Rum, but I am sure it added to the overall flavor as well. The Cavendish is very spicy tasting and provides for a nice tingle while exhaling the smoke through your nose.

My experience with this tinned sample (stamped 2008) was a good one. Not too moist, loose cut, packed and lit without incident, and burned to a light gray ash requiring no re-lights. By way of comparison to other Mac Baren offerings, in spite of the changes I detect in the current manufacture of this tobacco blend, I think it still has one of the nicest of all their tin aromas. It can bite if smoked too quickly and is best enjoyed with easy puffing. Letting it air dry in the tin with the lid off for a day or two helps with the bite problem. However, you can smoke it right out of the tin and if you take your time, you will be rewarded with a very tasty smoke. I wouldn't recommend this to beginning pipe smokers, however. I remember when I first smoked this over 30 years ago, my inexperience in the art of pipe smoking resulted in a hot, bitey smoke. Why did I keep coming back to it over the years? The tin aroma for starters, and it smelled fantastic when others smoked it. I was determined to get it right. With patience and perseverance, I believe I have. For those new to Plumcake, if you practice at it, I believe you will come to enjoy it as much as I have. With gentle puffing, the flavor really develops as you smoke through a bowl. No gurgle or moisture accumulation. Just a fine, gray ash is all that is left. Perhaps not the same Plumcake of old, but still very good indeed.

I am grateful for Mac Barren products being so readily available. The portions are generous and you can't beat their price! Plumcake is a solid, tasty, and dependable smoke!

UPDATE 1-23-10: I like Plumcake best with some age on it. Others have said that it loses something when not smoked fresh. True, its weaker, and the (newer) tin aroma does dissipate quite a bit over time, but what I have experienced is that aging brings out that subtle Latakia mustiness I commented on previous. Try it and see for yourself.

4 people found this review helpful.

UncleGar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
UncleGar (108)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

This one took me by surprise. I've smoked many a MacBaren and found many just versions of the others. Smoked blindly, I'd never have guessed this to be of the same brand. Aromatic? not by my definition. I bought this for the rum topping, yet had to search for it. (I am exceedingly fond of Pease's Mephisto and Barbary Coast, Vermont Pipes Wilke Rumcake, among others.) I hesitate to classify it as an English, but it is more so than Dunhill's Royal Yacht, probably my closest comparison to it. Some have compared it to MacBarens Navy Flake, I disagree. I really like NF, but to me, that is a honey cased burley-forward smoke. McClelland's Navy Flake is closer in spirit.

I'm not a pedant to latakia percentage as others are; what little there is, is indeed Syrian and used successfully as a condiment. To my tastes, Plumcake's defining characteristics are Virginia foremost, followed by cavendish, then burley. Rum, present in the tin note, blends in the smoke perhaps too well. I wish it were more noticable. Plums? Meh. Yeah, maybe. Don't buy it thinking it's a fruit salad aromatic. (I have yet to eat a fig and refuse to use fig aroma as a descriptor.)

The fine ribbons reminded me of rolling tobacco and consideration must be given to the pipe bowl size and loading for successful smoking, something which many here have yet to learn. For this reason, I'd recommend this for experienced smokers only. I find larger bowls loaded moderately (easy to overpack or underpack) and easily puffed not only do not bite but give a very rich flavor.

The downside of larger bowls of Plumcake (to me) is the nicotine, a potential plus to others. Royal Yacht it is not, fortunately, but I still have to quit mid-bowl. For this reason, I cannot comment on the last fractions in terms of taste or dottle.

Pros: Cost- twice the product (100g) for about the same money. Aroma- I find it pleasant, as does the distaff, now a consideration. Some others have remarked that it has the classic "pipe smell" that we recall from decades ago with fond memories. Not a stinker, this. I like it: not burning tires, not vanilla mango coconut, not campfire nor cigarette, but classic "pipe". Taste- I find it rich enough so that bite-inducing heavy puffing is unnecessary.

Cons: Nicotine is on the high side. Feel free to consider this a plus. Technique is fussier than many to achieve a good smoke, true of many MacBarens. Ergo the bite complaints repeatedly documented below. At least it growls first. A dedicated pipe is strongly suggested because it does leave a mark. Smoke it while it is fresh and pliable. Some blends rehydrate just fine. This doesn't, although I've never tried to rehydrate with rum, in all fairness. Smoke it up soon after opening. I find that I want to anyway.

Not yet a 4 star, but a regular in rotation

Pipe Used: Larger bowled Peterson bent, dedicated

Age When Smoked: 2 years.

Purchased From: Liquor store surprisingly well stocked with cigars and pipe tobacco

Similar Blends: Dunhill Royal Yacht, McClelland Navy Cavendish.

3 people found this review helpful.

FireintheBriar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
FireintheBriar (9)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Unnoticeable

English blend? Hmm, doesn't taste like any english blend I have ever smoked, that said I have only smoked a couple dozen so my inexperience may be telling on me. Wow, the tin aroma is magnificent, the best my olfactory system has encountered. The first whiff was pleasant, the next was even better as I was picturing three bottles of slivovitz lined up on a slot machine like I had won the grand prize, cartoon fireworks were going off in my mind and I could hear sirens. Plum brandy is my take, I would bet my least favorite pipe that they ran out of Jamaican rum and was casing this blend with slivovitz. The taste lived up to the tin aroma, very good. For the first time I was able to separate some of the flavors, I tasted spicy. The burn was consistent with only a few relights. I did get some pipe gurgle, but that may be due to the temperature being below zero during my walk. I'll study this temperature thought further. I like Plumcake and it may even go on my reorder list, I will let you know if I actually finish the 100 gram tin.

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

3 people found this review helpful.

the_german Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_german (206)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Very Full Very Pleasant

Back in my college days, this was one of "the" tobaccos for me.

The tin aroma is a bit of a mystery: it's delicious, but for the life of me I could not define what it's made up of. Totally unique. As is the room note; my co-students could always tell when I was in because of it. For some reason, the trail I left behind wherever I was smoking this seemed to be the essence of all the good properties of pipe smoke back then, and this still seems to be holding true; recently I was walking in the pedestrian zone of my home town getting a whiff of it, and could almost immediately identify the pipe smoker responsible; he readily admitted to having Plumcake in his bowl (and was both surprised and flattered for my having caught him out).

The Latakia only gives this blend a nice, spicy touch; in the room aroma it is unnoticeable. The smoke is not exactly for the beginner; Plumcake needs good maintenance and a light draw to be enjoyed.

But if you can do that, it's a very nice blend. The term "taste explosion" comes to mind, in a nicely old-fashioned way. I'd describe the overall experience as along the lines of dark wood panelling on the walls with leather furniture. It's that kind of tobacco.

3 people found this review helpful.

Pipe4ever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe4ever (198)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Mild Very Pleasant

Plumcake is the finest of Mac Baren aromatic blends, the tin aroma is unique and mysterious, the flavor is Smokey, fruity and delightful, however, this is truly a very, very bitey smoke, at any minimum provocation it will literally destroy your tongue for 2 days

Just pay attention! smoke it very sloley, if you still can not, try Mac Baren The Solen Mixture, this is almost the same as Plumcake but without the bite.

Plumcake is one of my favorite tobaccos, I buy it in bulk and it improves nicely with age.

3 people found this review helpful.

ven Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ven (13)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Very Pleasant

I have a beloved meer that had become rather finicky over the past six months. I don't know what the deal is - personality change, who knows. Pipes can be fickle, and this one decided that it simply did not like anything. I have tried several tobaccos. High end, low end...the pipe hates everything. Narrowing the problem down to a bitter taste, I decided to try something more fruity and went with the Mac B Plumcake. What a life saver!! The pipe took to this tobacco so instinctively that I swear this was what the previous owner must have been smoking. It's a lovely smoke and a good change of pace for me. My meer seemed like it was slipping into a familiar glove - it was really quite amazing to find a match that seemed so compatible. Needless to say, this will be in my constant rotation. As for this tongue-bite thing, I don't know. For me, it is just perfect - just enough to make me feel like a man, yet not too much. The reviews with issues about this befuddle me a bit, because for my palette it is in the Goldilocks zone. I found this tobacco to be incredibly heroic - it was heartbreaking to have my beloved pipe acting so strange, and Mac Baren Plumcake saved the day. It's a terrific smoke and it got my pipe all happy again. A +

Pipe Used: Laxey Manx Meerschaum

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Rain City Cigar, Seattle

2 people found this review helpful.

Kraft1994 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kraft1994 (54)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Overall I'd have to say that plum cake is the best Mac baren has to offer. Though that's not saying much this is actually a surprisingly pleasant smoke. Id hardly call it an English blend but the Latakia is noticeable. Its more of an attempt at Bell's Three Nuns which is my absolute favorite Va/Per blend. In Plum Cake the burley takes the forefront. All the Latakia adds is a touch of smokey spice which complements the plum/rum casing. However the casing bring with it the Mac baren tongue bite curse. I don't understand why they use Latakia and a casing to achieve a spice and plum flavor when they could just use perique. I guess Mac baren just feels all blends need to be cased to achieve the perfect level of tongue bite.... however it is an honest effort but it just falls short of success. To me Mac baren will always be just one step above OTC tobaccos. So if, God forbid, I ever run out of tobacco (very unlikely) and I'm a little strapped for cash, I'll swing down to my tobacconist and pick up a tin of this.

2 people found this review helpful.

fr_tom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fr_tom (158)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

I am not the kind of guy who is likely to pick up a tin of something named "Plumcake" on a whim. I was complaining to my tobacconist about the bulk selection he had and he suggested Old Dark Fired which I liked a lot. The next time I went back, I asked him what he smoked, and he said he went through spells. Right now he was in a Plumcake spell. I picked up a tin.

The tin smells of fruit - figs maybe, and it reminds me a little of the pouch smell of And So To Bed.

I was pleasantly surprised by this blend. It is sweet and spicy with just enough latakia to barely notice. I got a lot of flavor and is a satisfying smoke that is a little different for me. There may have been a whiff of that rum in the flavor from time to time, but it was not a theme. I did not have issues with tongue bite, and it smoked well right out of the tin. The tin was a year old from the date on the back when I opened it. I will buy this again, just for a change of pace. I won't open another tin as soon as this one is gone. Solid 3 on the recommendation scale...

2 people found this review helpful.

Alguhan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alguhan (140)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

When I was not a fan of pure viriginias, this was on the top of my favorites. I've smoked tens of tins of 100 gr. The smell and smoke of this tobacco is like a true tobacco. For a few years I prefer to smoke this blend only in the evenings and especially in autumn and winter. It may be overhelming if you smoke it all the day. I would like to recommend a slow burn for the best results. A fast smoking can hurt! I had also opportunity to smoke aged tins. The burley and latakia flavors become bland, and yes, you feel the rum aroma better.

2 people found this review helpful.

UberDelegate86 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
UberDelegate86 (2)
★★★★
Strong Strong Full Pleasant

First impression: Wow!

When you open up the tin, you are hit with that smell of rum (real rum and not that phony extract rum smell) and then the smell of some spicy latakia underneath that. Very interesting smell. And two of my favourite flavours! What's not to like?

The flavour when it is smoked its more latakia and less rum, which I am find with. The rum, to me, adds more to the room note and not to the overall taste. Mind you, there is a rum flavour.

I know many people consider this an aromatic, but to me, with the latakia, it taste more like an English with some rum added (which works well together) than an overly cased rum aromatic. I guess this is a crossover?

Anyway, definitely worth trying if you love aromatics, rum, English or latakia. If you love all of them, as do I, you may find this one amazing!

2 people found this review helpful.

Griswold Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Griswold (16)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Plumcake is an old standby from Mac Baren. It has been available for more than 50 years and I can see why.

It's neither an aromatic proper nor is it really unflavored, the topping is applied in a very skillful manner, accompanying the base tobaccos rather than overpowering them. It's sweet, but not overly so, it's spicy, but not so much as to draw unwanted attention from nonsmoking bystanders.

Provided the smoker has understood the 101 of pipesmoking (especially the parts about not packing too tightly and about not puffing too fast), Plumcake is a very good tobacco that can be smoked all day if one is so inclined.

2 people found this review helpful.

kilted1 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kilted1 (43)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

This tobacco is a very pleasant surprise to me. I have tried several of Mac Baren?s offerings and I hadn?t previously found anything I particularly liked, with the exception of Dark Twist Roll Cake . I don?t typically smoke aromatics, though certain SG and G&H Lakeland scented varieties score high points with me. I smoke Haddo?s Delight by GL Pease, Luxury Twist Flake by Peter Stokkebye and Benjamin Hartwell?s Evening Stroll, Plumcake will add another to my line up.

Appearance: This blend has a beautiful presentation, being comprised predominately red and golden Virginias, and with darker spiced dark Cavendish. Nearly uniform in cut this tobacco is a fine ribbon variety

Tin aroma: This is a complex mixture of matured Virginias and spiced Cavendish and Rum. There are deep molasses tones a slight sour tang one expects in Virginias some slight spicy tones and a deeper fig-like aroma. There is a slightly nutty quality as well. I detect a sweetness and I?m often tempted to take a small bit and chew it, it smells that good!

This tobacco is nearly perfect in moisture straight out of the tin. Lighting is usually a one match affair, and generally stays lit throughout the entire bowl, unless I let the pipe go out. As expected, the initial flavor is very spicy and sweet though not overly so on either count. There are distinctly citrus notes of the Virginias and a deep harmonious flavor of well mannered Cavendish. The ?spice? quickly yields it?s dominance to a nice throaty Virginia/Cavendish with hints of dark Rum medley which continues to build throughout the bowl.

Mid Bowl: Approaching mid-bowl, the fullness tends to build and the flavors mix and match very nicely. While this blend is not very complex, it is however plenty interesting in character. There are subtle changes here and there as each component asserts dominance from time to time. The ?spice? is always ?just there? the Virginias and Cavendish engage in a friendly competition and the Rum just continues to drone on and on. While not particularly strong in nicotine, there is plenty of flavor and body to this mixture.

Home Stretch: As end of the bowl approaches, the strength of this mixture has built to a fine mélange of flavors and fullness. Though many other reviews mentioned tongue-bite, I have not experienced any. This is a very well behaved tobacco of fine quality. Knowing that it is mainly Virginias is all the information I need to know how to smoke it. I tend to ?sip it? slowly and thereby enjoy the deepening flavors without any trouble with heat or sourness that can result from over-puffing a Virginia mixture.

The ONLY drawback is that something about this blend tends to plaster my palate. I often reserve it for late in the evening; because I?m rarely able to ?cleanse my palate? enough to really taste anything else.

This tobacco blend has earned a place in my occasional rotation, mainly for holidays and when non-smokers are about.

Supplemental Notes: My personal recommendation is that several pipes be reserved for this mixture as the spice tends to ?color? the bowl rather rapidly and might not mix well with other mixtures. Rating for those interested in numbers *

2 people found this review helpful.

sweetgrass Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sweetgrass (2)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I'll start by saying that this blend is number 1 in my rotation. As a fan of mainly aromatics, this is a blend that can be enjoyed by English smokers as well. The flavor is always perfect, with a light fruit and smoky taste. The fruit is somewhat of a dried plum flavor, but it does not, and i repeat, DOES NOT overtake the remarkable flavor. I have read some posts on this site of horrible tongue bite with this one, but if you puff slowly and savor it, it will always deliver. I cant understand why anyone would want to rush this! This is quality, and perfect blending at its finest. It reminds me of every reason i started pipe smoking! Pick up a tin of this, if you enjoy a nice flavorful aromatic, but also enjoy a little spice and pepper, thats not to rough on the palate. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

2 people found this review helpful.

fmjiii Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fmjiii (11)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Plumcake is not a typical aromatic at all.

This is one of my favorite MacBaren blends. When you open up the tin, you are hit with that smell of plum, rum and then the smell of some spicy latakia underneath. Very interesting smell. The plum and rum flavors don't overpower so much as compliment the virginia and burley combination. It's a completely different kind of tobacco than I've ever smoked, not quite aromatic, not quite an English blend.

The flavor when it is smoked its more latakia and less rum. The rum, to me, adds more to the room note and not to the overall taste. Mind you, there is a rum flavor. The first 1/3 to half of the bowl was like that, a good steady English. Slightly sweet Virginia and spicy Cavendish, however mellowed by the present Burley. The aromatic comes out about half way through the bowl.

Many people consider this an aromatic, but with the latakia, it taste more like an English with some rum added (which works well together) than an overly cased rum aromatic. Definitely worth trying if you love aromatics, rum, English or latakia.

Overall I'd have to say this is a great smoke for someone looking for a very light aromatic.

Pipe Used: Various briars

1 person found this review helpful.

Kristian Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kristian (1)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

It's not my favorite tobacco at the moment (and that's just because I don't really smoke latakia anymore), but I've never loved a tobacco as much as I loved Plumcake. Naturally sweet- from the tobacco itself. Perfect room note- smells of what Tom Fords Tobacco Vanille would have been based on. The perfect touch of latakia- which was used more as a spice or condiment- not as a base component. The art of subtlety was mastered with this tobacco, nothing was overdone or underdone- not too much latakia, not too much topping, not too strong in flavor or nicotine. A++ If they made this tobacco without latakia, I'd buy it by the pound.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Trevi

Purchased From: Barclay Rex

1 person found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (154)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I am kind of still up in the air about this one even after smoking 100 grams of this over a year and a half's time. I used many different pipes and got many different results, but I found it to be the best in my Meers.

To start with, I thought the tin note on this was terrible. It kind of reminded me of Copenhagen snuff. At light up, I did get a bit of the plummy topping, but it was most apparent at the beginning. The latakia is no doubt there, but plays the perfect role as a condiment in this. I find that to be a good as I am not a big fan of Latakia with toppings. I think the burley presence was strong throughout the smoke and I really didn't detect the Virginia until about the halfway point, but then they chimed in with that light hay sweetness that I would expect.

It is a tough one to rate, but I think that I do recommend this and perhaps more heavily to the beginner looking to try Latakia. I am not sure a seasoned lat lover will like this as anything more than a change of pace smoke, but I did enjoy it and I also like to puff on my Odyssey and Penzance from time to time. One thing about this blend is that it is pretty unique and thus it is hard to say smoke this one instead. So I am going with three stars on this one.

Pipe Used: Meerschaum was best for me

Purchased From: local B & M

1 person found this review helpful.

codyp Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
codyp (65)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Strong Medium to Full Tolerable

This blend was very surprising. Expecting more of an aromatic plum kind of blend I got a bit of a complex english.

The blend did burn pretty hot, and the taste wasn't too great.

The room note was actually pretty decent, and it did light easily. However it also burned pretty quick.

Because this type of blend is one of my favorites, and they kind of pulled it off, I'll give two. I also believe mac baren can make a good blend, but am still looking.

Pipe Used: Peterson System Bent

Purchased From: Local Shop

1 person found this review helpful.

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

1st time I opened the tin I can smell a good fragrant, a little bit smell of plum fruit and a hint of a good rum. Easy to pack and burnt well. The strongest taste I think is va, with just a very little hint of latakiya not a strong one, but the whole taste is very sweet. Very pleasant to enjoy and smooth smoke. For those who like a smooth smoking definetely I will recommend this blend.

1 person found this review helpful.

Bit-O-Baccy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bit-O-Baccy (4)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Plumcake is a true classic. The blend works perfectly together.

1 person found this review helpful.

Fly ticky Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fly ticky (26)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

I love the tin aroma ,The only thing is the tongue bite is unbearable.I still have tin that has not been opened.Maybe in ten yrs.or so I will try it again.It is not in my rotation and I don,t think it ever will be.It,s worth trying if you want to try new tobacco's .I know every ones taste is differant and maybe you will like it. Good Luck

1 person found this review helpful.

Mike Toney Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mike Toney (44)
★★☆☆
Mild Extra Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

Popped the lid and noticed that unmistakable aroma of Latakia & the heavy rum topping. I didn't notice the "good enough to eat" aroma that others have...just a flavored aromatic with a room note that is pleasant but not overwhelming. I sampled this blend in my large, Peterson 9S, homeboy pipe and it was quite mild with a sweet taste. The Latakia was...feint, or not too pronounced, but noticeable. I felt, more than tasted the rum topping...must have been the 151 variety. In that respect, this stuff could have been called Rumcake as it bit me regardless of the manner in which it was finessed.

My first bowl sample wasn't goopy toward the end as others have attested & the tobacco burned down to a totally dry, grey ash. On the second trial run, I discovered that drying this stuff out pretty good will tone it down and deminish tongue bite a little. Regardless of the review span this blend has received, it's one you'll have to try for yourself. It has received many reviews which piqued my curiosity. Curiosity killed the cat. I personally consider it to be a very tasty, flavored blend & could rate it a three if not for the napalm, flash crater in my tongue.

This stuff created enough steam to power the Queen Mary across the Channel. Is this quality leaf? If it is, why would Mac B opt to charge it with an explosive casing that can be detonated by a spark? Why not just a mild Irish Cream or something of that nature? Mac Baren has a problem they should address on this mix. However, they know there's one born every minute...but please don't "rub" it in. I might develop a complex. P-cake has a really good taste & aroma but burns like acetylene. Therefore, IMHO, Mac Baren's Plumcake merits at best, two **s!

1 person found this review helpful.

dk-piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dk-piper (25)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

I love it! Case closed. Lit up, it really tastes like a sweet rumcake. can't get enough. As mentioned before, very well balanced blend. Doesn't get boring till the end.

i recommend you to use a pipe with activated carbon-filter to avoid tongue bite! ...just a conclusion i came to, because i only use filter-pipes and i've never experienced any tongue-bite yet. DO IT!!!

1 person found this review helpful.

viscfab Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
viscfab (81)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

First off, let mw say my pipes are all 9mm system pipes and I always use activated charcoal filters on my smokes. So, a tobacco must really be a pitbull to bite my tongue or to bur it anyway... The filter maintins almost all the nasty parts of the smoke trapped - say moisture, tar and nicotine levels and delivers a drier, more aromatic and pleasant smoke. So, albeit reading all biting reviews below, I cannot say the same... It never bit me. It is a very good tasty tobacco, with nice aroma and very rewarding. Not my fave MB blend, but not the least favorite as well.

update oct 3rd 2011:

Been a while since I last smoked this blend... Gave it a new try this weekend on a small sample I had on my stash and I felt the tobacco albeit good, now lacks more of the latakia contents for me... I guess I became a fuller English pipster... Not bad, but won ´t be getting it anymore, since HH Vintage Syrian is much more on my satisfaction realm for sure right now.

1 person found this review helpful.

Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (300)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Weird blend, with so many different opinions from the various users!

Compared to many other Mac Baren blends, I didn't like its cut: very stringy and thin ribbons, so it took me a while to find a correct packing method. Press it too much, and it will clog the airhole and form a "plug" which will become even tighter when expanding during the smoke. It's OK to form a sort of pressed sausage and then carefully inserting it into the bowl. Don't simply load the pipe with the "three pinches" method, or by gravity feeding and then pressing, because it will end up in disaster (hot and wet smoke). And, most important, don't press it too much.

Personally I don't find it too bitey, if you have a good technique. Actually, very little bitey: my tongue and gums are perfectly fine after smoking this. BUT it has rather high chances of scorching my palate, go figure...

What I find this blend rather lacking of, is flavor and flavor development. Bland, very bland. Pleasant and with never a bad flavor (it's very smooth, never bitter or harsh or acrid), but i want something more from a pipe tobacco. It has a very delicate sweetness, you can feel a pleasant hint of rum, and there's a very slight smokiness. Again, very rounded and refined. Some of the sweet smokiness and the rum clearly remind me of GLPease's beloved Mephisto... but the intensity is infinitely lower. Which is even more weird if you think that it actually has body and it doesn't feel like you are smoking air. Yes, it is even more delicate and subdued than other Mac Baren blends.

Overall it's not a bad tobacco, and I wouldn't mind smoking it again once in a while. What it has to offer is good... my problem is simply that I would like MORE of it.

1 person found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (586)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

UPDATE 4/30/13

Got an ounce from someone who implored me to try an aged version from 2001. While my original review is probably too harsh, the essence of it is correct. Typical Mac Baren rollcake filled with too subtle flavors and what is there is simply too bland to consider. The aroma is nice but the flavor is just too fleeting. Not worth the additional trouble I'm told these blends require to extract something resembling taste.

I also received some Roll Cake from the same year. Can't wait to try it... yeah... really excited about it... lol.

ORIGINAL REVIEW

All aroma, no flavor!

After reading some of the other reviews, I'm wondering if this blend was mismarked in the bag. I got no tongue bite from it at all - of course, I tend to smoke carefully. I got a great room note. I got little to no flavor from this. No spice, no sweetness, no "zing" - just a bunch of hot air. Bad batch?

Occasionally I started to taste something about to happen but as I anticipated some sort of flavor burst, it subsided back into nothingness. This reminds me of my last days as a cigarette smoker years ago - no flavor, just a nicotine hit. Dull, dull, boring, boring, bland, BLAND! Not worth it when there are so many fine blends out there.

1 person found this review helpful.

Gun Smoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gun Smoke (15)
★☆☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Honestly, this is a tasty blend. However, is will burn your tongue to hell and destroy your taste buds for a day or so. What a shame! What is it about this blend that makes it so bitey? The rum casing? Young Virginas?

I REALLY want to love this blend, but the scorching that I get simply precludes me from any real enjoyment. If you somehow by chance don't get burned, then you must have a tongue made out of raw elephant skin.

In truth, I would have easily given Plumcake at least 3 stars. But I think Mac Baren should reconsider what it is exactly that causes such a tongue lashing. It really is disappointing, because this blend taste-wise stands the potential to be Nirvana.

And you know, with all of the complaints about most of the Mac Baren blends being tongue biters ( of which Mac Baren is famous for ), you would think that someone at said company would have corrected the problem.

Mac Baren are you listening?

1 person found this review helpful.

N7COF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
N7COF (56)
★★★☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

A fine tobacco thats well balanced & behaves well, just not a home run for me like Navy Flake. Still give it a solid 3 stars.

Bad Good = Excellent * Exceptional

1 person found this review helpful.

Ixtlan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ixtlan (18)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I found this had a mild cigarish taste that I am not a real fan of. But it did have a mild oriental taste in the background. It is a mild blend and tastes of Virginians. Room note is little harsh compared to the aromatics I generally prefer.

1 person found this review helpful.

PipeDrummer88 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipeDrummer88 (12)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant

This is a great aromatic blend. I sure do love navy blends. The touch of latakia gives this wonderful aromatic the perfect amount of "smokey" flavor. It might bite a little if smoked too fast... so don't smoke this one fast (This is a wonderful tobacco. Savor the moment). Five stars

1 person found this review helpful.

Stationmaster Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stationmaster (7)
★★☆☆
Medium Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I call this one MISTER Bitey. It will hurt you if you're not gentle, slow and very watchful. Good for learners cause it demands respect. It has mine.

1 person found this review helpful.

Plex Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Plex (39)
★★☆☆
Very Mild Very Mild Mild Very Pleasant

MIld, sweet and no overpowering complications from nicotine. I've grown beyond this genre of aromatics. Nothing here for me, moving along ....

1 person found this review helpful.

mcbpipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mcbpipe (11)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Very Pleasant

I have smoked this for probably 20 years & the smell of this burning is what my kids associate with the smell of a pipe. I enjoy this very much however find that it is better left in a jar to dry out somewhat (I find it harsh & bitey right out of the can). It is also best only barely lit & puffed gently. If these happen then this is a delicious friendly smoke with plenty of flavour & good roomnote. Also good with a little blending latakia added to bring out the latakia supposedly there but not noticeably.

1 person found this review helpful.

OtterBill Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
OtterBill (1)
★☆☆☆
Very Strong Strong Full Strong

Plumcake has changed, and very much for the worst in my opinion. My ratings reflect the 'new' Plumcake, not the Plumcake I have smoked and loved for years. I think the earlier review comparing it to cough syrup was talking about a tin of it.

The 'old' Plumcake had a predominately light color in the tin, and the aroma was wonderful. Mildly sweet, mildly spicy, with a touch of vanilla (rum). The mixture did vary sometimes from tin to tin, sometimes it contained large flakes of darker tobacco, sometimes the cut was too fine. I put that down to the charm of a handmade product, and while the taste would also vary a bit, I always enjoyed it.

The 'new' Plumcake is a dark color, and the tin aroma has a very unpleasant, almost solvent aroma. There is a sort of chocolate/raisin quality to it. The taste reflects those dark aromas. Worst of all, it gives me headaches.

The 'new' Plumcake first surfaced early this year when I picked up a tin that offered a free tamper inside. I thought it was an odd tin, but others with that label were exactly the same. Then a new label giving the MacBaren web site address appeared, and they have the same problem. Now I'm finding even tins with the old label contain the 'new' Plumcake (although some seem to be a sort of a transition mixture.)

I can no longer smoke Plumcake, and am asking here if there are other tobaccos that are similar. I seem to have a very limited palette...don't like aromatics, don't like regular English, don't care for Latakia too often. Plumcake fit perfectly in between all of those. Is there another mixture out there that fits in that space?

1 person found this review helpful.

Gordy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gordy (16)
★★★☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant

I used to smoke Plumcake but had not for years. I bought a tin and I still like it very much. Its a not too fruity smooth Aromatic. Not being an Aromatic smoker I dont think I will ever give an aromatic 4 stars, however this one comes close!

For those complaining of bite... slow down! Its easy to get excited by the flavor and puff too hard!

1 person found this review helpful.

rhapsodyofmetal Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rhapsodyofmetal (42)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

The smell out of the tin absolutely made me sick,at first. After the initial light I began to like it,but the nicotine hit was way to rough! Good tobacco,bad nicotine.

Blah...

After a week of this I threw it away. It made me sick to even think of it. Good riddance. The smell reminds me of cough syrup.

1 person found this review helpful.

jopado Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jopado (12)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

I stumbled on to Plum Cake in the early 60s and was absolutely overwhelmed by it's flavor and smoke ability. It was the first tobacco I bought in a "tin". I smoked nothing else for several years and then drifted away from tobacco altogether until the late 80s when my wife said, "Why don't you get out some of your pipes, you always enjoyed them so much and you used your packing time to figure out how you were going to answer my questions." Since I always seem to need time for those questions I bought a tin of Plum Cake and tried some of my thoroughly dried out pipes.(None of any value) Did not, repeat, did not enjoy the smoke at all. Closed the tin, (love Mac's twist lock lids) put it on the shelf and proceeded to learn about the wonderful world of leaf. A couple of years later I ran across that tin and tried it again. You guessed it....age this stuff and it's a wonderful smoke. Medium right down the line,mellow,smooth and cool. From my experience I suggest opening the tin, loosening the tobacco (maybe try a pipe or two) and then put it in your cellar for at least a year. I'm now buying some in those fancy plastic cylinders that Mac's got on the market but can't decide if it'll be OK to cellar it in the plastic or pack it in Mason Jars.

UPDATE: 10/30/08 I just reviewed SmokeKing David's comment on Plum Cake. It worried me because it seemed to be well thought out. Perhaps the consistency is not up to MAC'S standards. If that's the case, I've over-spent on that part of my cellar.

1 person found this review helpful.

SmokeKing David Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeKing David (115)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

UPDATE: I broke my guarantee that I would not try this tobacco any more. I couldn't just leave this blend alone; no, I had to keep trying to make this work well for me. I don't know, maybe MacBaren is being more consistent or maybe it's just me, but in 2013 I was offered a sample from a fresh tin...and it was really good. The key for me was in drying it out a little bit and slowing down my puffing. I have since bought another tin and smoked about half of it, and enjoyed it quite a bit. I am raising my "rating" to 3 stars.

Original Review: When this blend is on....it's on! But that doesn't seem to happen very often.

This is an inconsistent tobacco; sometimes great, other times very hot with mucho bite. I can't seem to get this weed to be at its best on a regular basis.

Solent Mixture, also from Mac Baren, is also a rum-based blend with a tiny amount of Latakia...and Solent always performs like a champ. So I will try to finish my tim of Plumcake, but I make no guarantees on that score. I will guarantee that I won't buy Plumcake again.

Govern Yourself Accordingly!

SmokeKing David

Pipe Used: Savinelli Autograph, Dunhill Shell

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: JR Cigars - Southfield, Michigan

Similar Blends: MacBaren Solent.

1 person found this review helpful.

Hermit 78 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hermit 78 (33)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Mild Very Pleasant

Smells nice. Tastes OK. Burns hot, hot, HOT! If Haddo's Delight had a temperamental underage girlfriend, she'd be Plumcake. The Danes can have their candy-weed. I'll smoke tobacco, thank you very much.

1 person found this review helpful.

Sylvian Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sylvian (28)
★★☆☆
Mild Medium Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

It was a strange relationship (but then again, rather usual kind of a strange relationship). I loved it at first, smoking Plumcake almost exclusively, but after a week or so it was a rare guest in my pipes. As it turned out with time (nothing suprising really), the pleasant taste of this baccy is at least 70% dependent on the flavoring. The 30% left after 6 months when the flavoring was almost gone were at least nothing special. Such is the sad destiny of aromatics.

Not much tongue bite with proper technique, but best within 1 month after opening - how about a "Smoke slowly, finish the tin quickly" slogan?

As for the taste, there are lots of much more interesting offerings, even in the Mac Baren range.

Will not buy anymore, but would recommend to try.

1 person found this review helpful.

joseph Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
joseph (46)
★☆☆☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

A very nice taste, really like the rum topping in combination with the Latakia. However, I never can manage to smoke more than a half bowl of this. To much tongue pain. Very slow puffing doesn't help. Nor did using different pipes and packing methods. Therefore just 1 star.

1 person found this review helpful.

Big bad Jon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big bad Jon (232)
★★☆☆
Mild Medium Medium Pleasant

This blend was a bit of a disappointment. I love Mac Baren Navy Flake and was expecting something on the same line, with a bit of a plum flavor. The plum flavoring was more evident at the top and was not overpowering. I could taste a bit of the rum components. I just never got into it though it did not have enough Latakia and would have been better if the VA tobacco was more tangy. The blend burns well and does not get hot, but just never had me excited about smoking it. It is obvious the tobacco is of good quality just not my speed.

1 person found this review helpful.

Max1a Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Max1a (29)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

O.K. first let me say that Plumcake DOES NOT, I repeat, DOES NOT! age well. I had three tins, I smoked one of them in early fall of 2006 and cellared the other two. At that time I found this to be a very nice tobacco that was somewhat elegant in aroma and could be smoked in social situtions without offending non-smokers and offered a very nice smoke for the "pipester"

Christmas of 2007 came and I discovered that it had taken on the visage of a bland and tasteless concoction that did not resemble tobacco I put up more than a year earlier. Thinking I may have had a bad tin, I opened the other and found the same thing. I don't think it was the packaging and my cellaring methods are sound and proven. I think it was just the nature of the blend. It has been written (and said) that aromatics don't age well and this is the proof. While I do not technicaly consider Plumcake a true aromatic, it is evident that it gets a great deal of its character from its casing/topping. If you got any cellered, don't expect great things. Better to buy it and smoke it while it is young.

1 person found this review helpful.

Stacey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stacey (40)
★☆☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Updated 6/5/2008

Well considering I'm still trying to finish the rest of the tin I originally reviewed and am finally going to give up and mulch it into my shrubs, I have to drop this a star. - Not Recommended.

Original Review Follows

I admit I'm a little biased against aromatics. If you love them, then add a star to my rating. Even so, I might pick this up occasionally. I find it to be a fairly pleasant smoke that reminds me of fruit cake, so it seems appropriate this Christmas. I smoked this and a bowl of Dunhill's Standard Mixture Medium the other day and had a Latte as well. One or more of those kept me up until 3AM the other night. So maybe this has more Nicotine than people are letting on here. Not a bad smoke.

1 person found this review helpful.

Backwoods Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Backwoods Piper (51)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

I love Plumcake it is a wonderful smoke. The blend of VA's with a dash of Cavendish and a touch of Latakia make it an excellent all around smoking mixture. Very seldom have I not had positive reviews with regard to the room note.

This mixture burns nice, more often than not one light. The flavor is strong enough to keep me interested. I am an avid fan of English blends and seldom favor a Rum topped mixture Plumcake is a delightful exception. One word of caution take your time with this one aggressive smoking can lead to some tongue bite.

I recently opened a can that I left to age for a little over two years and yes my friends this one improves with age and becomes even more flavorful! Plumcake is the perfect ending to Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner and is sure to satisfy if smoked gently.

I give this blend a four star rating because it is a one of a kind for me. Enjoy!!!

1 person found this review helpful.

Glorfindel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Glorfindel (57)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

This mix seems to have it all. Full tobacco strength good aromatic topping, not wet or hot smoking, no bite, and satisfying all the way 'round for me.

The VAs are creamy and light tasting and the smooth biteless burley adds enough body to make this work.

Latakia? Well if there is any I cannot detect it. Maybe it's there maybe it isn't and perhaps that's why this mix is such a success. Latakia can easily dominate a mix with its overpowering aroma and taste which would be a shame here.

I like latakia, but over a certain threshold causes all latakia blends to taste alike for me - boring, but thankfully that doesn't happen with Plum Cake.

This is an aromatic that I think any piper could love.

I notice it is the 4th most reviewed of all Mac Baren's offerings and I can see why.

4 stars.

I will be ordering more of this.

1 person found this review helpful.

smoking-rob Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
smoking-rob (70)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

I bought my first tin of Plumcake in 1976 and it then carried the suffix "aromatic" on the tin. I loved it a lot and, it was nice and sweet and a rather more coarse cut than nowadays. Then a few years later the suffix "aromatic" was replaced by "regular" and it just didn't taste the same, these tins having almost no flavour and the cut was very fine compared to the earlier version. A few years ago I had the opportunity to speak to MB chief blender Per and asked him about these two versions. He said that the formula was in fact unchanged and that the suffix "regular" was required for some markets by law.And that people had complained about the difference in taste which there couldn't be. Well, I assure you there was and for a while I bought all the "aromatic" tins I could find. He also told me that Plumcake has a 5% latakia content, the same in fact as MB's "Latakia Blend" ! Since the earliest incarnation of the "regular" version, what is offered today is a lot better than it was but I still dream about the taste of the Original Plumcake which then carried the description: Six tobacco's, each the finest of its kind is the formula that makes Mac Baren's Plumcake an extravagant blend.

As an afternote I would like to add that my review is more of an anecdote about Plumcake than a review proper. Let me just say that I agree with all the other positive reviews here.

2 March 2008: Last week I bought a sealed tin of Plumcake with the "aromatic" suffix! Must be at least 25 years old now. I daren't open it for fear it might spoil all the good memories...

1 person found this review helpful.

Mick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mick (10)
★★☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Very Mild Tolerable

This one IMO is only slightly better than the uninspiring and boring, Mac Baren Mixture. I would smoke it before reaching for Mixture anytime, but only if I didn't have anything better to smoke. I honestly can't see why people give this one such good reviews. One, pushing towards two, stars from me, but it still has a little more to go before it reaches that goal. This is meant to be an Aromatic???!!!

1 person found this review helpful.

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

This burns well, tastes as you'd expect it to, and has a great room note. The problem is that even a few draws will broil your tongue, leaving you unable to drink anything other than water or milk for at least a day. Some people are apparently able to handle MacBaren blends, and if so than I'd recommend this for aromatic lovers in that category. Otherwise, this is strongly NOT recommended.

1 person found this review helpful.

ThChrMn Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ThChrMn (7)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Pack it perfectly, sip it lightly and the taste is rewarding. This is a good tobacco but it is high maintenance. Two stars since it is all so fickle.

1 person found this review helpful.

pencils Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pencils (22)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Having a preference for aromatic blends, I really thought this would be an enjoyable briar hour. In a sense, it was - great smell from tin contents, easy packing... and... well... that was pretty much it. It was a bit like the British weather - fine in parts and miserable the rest.

Tongue - ow. Bowl - really hot. Taste - plummy, rummy, ashy, dusty... Last third of the bowl redeemed what was a pretty mixed experience. Only one relight was necessary about 3/4 of the way through. Was indeed reminiscent of Davidoff Scottish Mixture, and the latakia could be detected all the way through, if only in hints and shadows.

Conclusion? It was ok. Perhaps I need to persevere.

update

Ok, perhaps I was a little hasty. After a week with this and this alone, I would post a far more balanced review. Less bite, less heat, good taste. I was right about the needing to persevere. Enjoying it now.

1 person found this review helpful.

billbo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
billbo (8)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable

This is not what I thought is would be. I agree with a few others, is more like a house fire, If you like non aromatics but want something with a little better room note this may be for you.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

First, I'm not an aromatic smoker. Somehow, by reading the description, I imagined this as an Enlish/Scotish blend lightly flavoured, and I wanted to try it for a change of pace. After opening the tin, the smell of fruits with rum in the background quickly told me that I was misled, but I decided to give it a try nevertheless. Here's my summary:

Pros: smells and tastes like plumcake (not a minor virtue among lots of aromatics which taste to anything but what they're supposed to), flavoring is not overwhelming, high quality tobacco components.

Cons: very hot burning, tongue bite.

1 person found this review helpful.

imago Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
imago (63)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

Since I am unable to describe the tin aroma and appearance of this blend any better than those others who have submitted reviews, I shall limit my review to my impressions of its flavour and aroma.

I am impressed by both the taste and smell of this blend as it burns. It burns to a fine grey ash and does not cause any gurgle in my pipes. The odour of plums or of some unidentifiable berry wafts from the bowl, but it is by no means overwhelming or cloying. The quality tobaccos shine through the light topping.

Despite these accolades, be warned. This blend will set your tongue on fire if it is not smoked slowly and savoured like any other delicacy.

If you enjoy or are interested in aromatics, but tend to shy away from the goopy, sickly-sweet versions often found in bulk in tobacco shoppes everywhere, you will enjoy this one.

1 person found this review helpful.

bigbowls Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bigbowls (12)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

My second attempt at a MCBaren blend, the first being Mixture. I'm afraid I don't see that much difference between the two. The reason I can say that is because after smoking a bowl of either one of those blends, I couldn't taste anything due to my tongue being fried.

I'm going to keep trying this tobacco though as it comes highly rated.

1 person found this review helpful.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (574)
★★☆☆
Mild Very Mild Medium Pleasant

Typical of most MB blends. Bitey, a little syrupy, bland but a good amount of Tobacco for the price...Nine dollars for the large tin. Perhpas you might want to try this blend if you have not experimented with Danish blends.

1 person found this review helpful.

Loboatomy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Loboatomy (36)
★★★★
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

A standard stop on the pipe fanciers journey. Like many others I was attracted to this blend because of it's name and have continued to enjoy it due to it's uniqueness. I like this stuff, and have not had the MacBaren bite problems as some others have. This is one of those tobaccos that I occasionally get an itch for that nothing else will satisfy. This and Club Blend (and Dark twist) are my favorite MacBarens.

A moderately strong taste with a plseasant room note. Some say that they cannot detect any latakia in this blend, but I my significant other certainly can (as can I, I must admit), but overall, I find that this is an easygoing smoke that is pretty forgiving as long as you dont try to chuff down a bowl of it in 15 minutes.

I typically smoke this well rubbed out and tightly packed out of a shortish sandblast pot. It ages fairly well, but the aroma from a tin of just-opened Plumcake is without comparison.

1 person found this review helpful.

Talonr1701 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Talonr1701 (119)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

If you can master this stuff, This would be great- Turns my tounge into Road rash. I so much wanted to love this stuff. Smell and cut were right up my alley. First few puffs- Tongue stinging...Went to breath smoking- Tounge got destroyed. Use with caution- Starting to believe in the MacBaren curse.

1 person found this review helpful.

OSR Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
OSR (73)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Mild Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

Q: What's good for tongue bite?

A: A bowl of Mac Baren Plumcake!

And if latakia wasn't mentioned in the description above I'd have never guessed it was in this torcher.

This is one of those Mac B flame-thrower blends. Boy, it sounds good and even smells good in the tin. Even with the "plug/stop" method of taking a wad of tobacco out of the tin and jamming it into the bowl of a small pipe doesn't keep this from producing copious amounts of steam.

To each his own, I suppose. Variety makes the world go 'round.

1 person found this review helpful.

DrJohnNash Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrJohnNash (9)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

In my relatively fresh experience as a pipe smoker it was in the first 25 grams of this tin that, during after dinner walks with man's best friend (dog and Italian briar pipe), I found a fantastic aroma taste stepping stone to take me from aromatics to the maturity of a more "serious" tobacco.

Then, once I pinched into the second 25 g. portion of the tin I . . . ZZZzzz

1 person found this review helpful.

ricardo pear Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ricardo pear (7)
★☆☆☆
Mild Mild Mild Tolerable

Sounds nice doesn't it? its not though. Thoroughly abysmal in fact. It tastes/smells like a combination of paper and an Australian bush fire. Plus it will torch your tongue like one too.

1 person found this review helpful.

DUPE.1512 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DUPE.1512 (196)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

European aromatic with a rum casing. The room note is pleasent. I never tasted any Latakia throughout the 100 gram tin, not even a subtle poking through. The VA/Burley in this is very tempermental and will fry the tounge if smoked to fast or to often. Nothing here to bring me back.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

I have periodically tried this one over the last 25 years--the current tin I am working on is probably my fourth or fifth. I like it, but not enough to keep it around. It has to be smoked carefully to minimize tongue bite, and while this is true of some of the other Mac Baren offerrings, I happen to like them more than this one and so consider them worth the trouble. Plumcake has an unusual taste and aroma; it does taste somewhat like plum or perhaps raisins. This can be decreased by letting it air a bit first. It's not an unpleasant taste, but is a bit unusual. I consider this a change-of-pace tobacco, something to be purchased every few years when my curiosity gets the better of me. I smoke it occasionally, probably taking several months to finish the tin.

1 person found this review helpful.

DUPE.629 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DUPE.629 (133)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

PLUMCAKE 09-02-2005. Plumcake was my main staple tobacco for a very long time. Then about three year's ago it seemed to change.The change I noticed at that time was,it seemed to lose any strength and flavour. About two week's ago I thought I'd give it another go. 'I'm very glad I did' as it's now fully back to that superb beautiful tobacco that I alway's loved. I don't rub this out very much,one to two light's only seem's to be required. Superb flavour's of all the the blend's used,come through at various time's throughout the smoke. Plumcake is very well behaved,all the way to the bottom of the bowl. It leaves a very nice non-goopy,clean,white-grey ash at the end of the bowl. "Very,highly recommended"

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipeline Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipeline (206)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I keep trying Mac Baren blends for a variety of good reasons. I cannot seem to smoke one that does not leave my mouth ruined for hours up to days.

Vast experience with a plethora of Virginia flakes, cased and otherwise, heavy English and Balkans, and it makes not a whit of a difference.

Delicious and dangerous. The world of Mac Baren.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

I have recently ordered several tins of the MacBaren line. I have never really given these a try. A couple of years ago I tried Mixture and quickly put it away. I recently purchased London Burley, Plumcake, Golden Extra and Symphony. Well, I have just tried Plumcake and have to confess I like it. It has virginia,burley, latakia, cavendish with a rum casing. It is definitely a cased tobacco but the true tobacco flavors come through. I do not find it overly sweet but find it a tad spicey. The smell of the tin on opening the lid reminded of And so To Bed from the Esoterica line. On lighting up the flavors were rather spicey and complex. I don't know if I have a rather worked in tongue but on easy puffing I did not experience any tongue bite at all. Very flavorfull and enjoyable. I will be partaking of this cake more in the future. Plumcake holds a place for me in my rotation.

============================UPDATE=========================== ooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwww! Although I love the flavors of this tobacco, my tongue is still recovering from 4 bowls of this stuff. TONGUE BURN............I will try to puff more gentlyin the future to see if my tongue notices the difference. Downgrade to 2 1/2 stars.

1 person found this review helpful.

Esoxhunter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Esoxhunter (60)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

September 2004

I am not a huge aromatic fan--I think years of cigarette smoking dulled my palate. I just can't taste the sweetness others seem to enjoy in aromatics. Nevertheless, this blend is probably my favorite aromatic to date. I'll finish the current tin but probably will not buy more anytime soon.

1 person found this review helpful.

pedro Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pedro (7)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

The smell of this stuff is like dryed raisins (a good glass of rum). In fact you get in this smoke what you smell, but do we really need to burn our tongue with all this sugar stuff ???

1 person found this review helpful.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (574)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild Medium Tolerable to Strong

This is one of my staple tobaccos. It is easily packed, and bruns dry and cool. THis is a great tobacco for those wishing to depart from heavily cased blends. This is a Navy blend meaning that it does have a touch of rum in it. I think this helps quite a bit with the room note. It burns to a fine white ash, and is one of my favorites for a new pipe, as it helps build a quick but hard cake. This is a sweet tobacco, and does great with aging. I have had several tins for over a year, and the sweetness, and honey-like characteristics become even more noticeable after time. This is also a relatively easy blend to find in most tobacco shops. I highly recomend this to all.

1 person found this review helpful.

Briarabbit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Briarabbit (116)
★☆☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

IMHO, this tobacco is pure crap! I wouldn't waste my time with it when there are other fine tobaccos made by Mac B. Somebody said it was like a house fire.I can top that,its more like the crap house door on a tuna boat burning.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

Initial reaction is that it?s heavily cased nonsense ? the pouch aroma is a pruney horror. But the flavor at the match is undeniably true tobacco taste with a not-altogether-unpleasant topping, and my girlfriend informs me that the room note is the same. Virginia/Cavendish simplicity.

Since MacBaren is one of the few decent and readily available tobaccos here in Poland, I?ll probably try this again (unless it suddenly disappears, as my newly-favored blends tend to do here) but given other choices, I wouldn?t buy it again.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

This mixture I found to be very sweet and aromatic. It smelled so good in the tin that I was almost tempted to chew it. This is a mild to mediun smoke with a wonderful room note but smokers beware , If you puff this one to hard or to often those Virgianaians in the blend will cut lose on your tounge like a platoon of grunts armed with flame throwers. I personaly recomend smoking this blend in a very large chubby billiard with thick chamber walls and taking short puffs. As for me Lustra and I hold the same opinion , the taste is not worth the tounge blisters.

1 person found this review helpful.

Bona Fides Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bona Fides (4)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild to Medium Mild Very Pleasant

I tried this blend as an attempt to put a quality aromatic in my rotation.

The color of the tobacco is mostly golden and brown virgnias with some dark cavendish. The moisture level was a tad on the high side. The tin aroma was devine.

This tobacco requires all of a piper's attention. Overpuff just a little and the virginias cut loose with the tongue flamethrower. My poor tongue suffered through this 100 gram tin due in part to my inattentiveness. This does not mean this is a bad tobacco, its just that I'm used to being able to enjoy my pipes (and tobacco) without the necessity of paying strict attention to my smoking technique. The tobbaco taste was actually pretty good when I wasn't extinguishing my flaming tongue with water.

The room aroma is a definite crowd pleaser. Even my ultra-health conscious, anti-smoking sisters loved the smell. Nevertheless, I cannot recommend this tobacco. Of course if you can pay your undivided attention to how you smoke your tobacco and use proper, regulated smoking technique, then give this a try.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

I find this blend to be ok just not great. It packs, lights and burns ok but the flavor to me is not worth the effort. This tobacco also seems to be artificially sweetened and in turn does not age well.I know there are other blends out there that will better reward your efforts. All in all a quality tobacco but the portions seem to be to muddy no real character at least for me anyways.

1 person found this review helpful.

Skilling Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skilling (80)
★☆☆☆
Mild Strong Medium Tolerable

July 2002: .... I have been trying for two weeks to get accustomed to the sudden blast of plum when first lighting up. After the top 3rd, the blast ceased but I could still taste the "blues" in the background.

In defense of the tobacco; it is top grade and I love several of Mac Baren's other blends. At times (after the initial blast), I can smoke several bowls back to back. At other times, I have to force myself to finish one.

If your stepping up into the VAs; this is a good one. Plum, Blueberry and Raspberry lovers will crave this blend. The "blues" turned me off.

October 2002: .... Visited Plumcake again. Three month old tin. The Plum is still there but not as domineering as it once was. I'll finish this tin eventually.

1 person found this review helpful.

mailman 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mailman 5000 (60)
★☆☆☆
Medium Strong Medium Tolerable

The plum in the title gives some warning at least that plums are on the agenda with this one, a mellow mixture, a must for plum lovers everywhere, but pipe lovers my find a rather limited appeal .A novelty you my find hard to lose once it gets a hold of your pipe. Devotees will find every new mixture retains the plum magic.

1 person found this review helpful.

lustra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lustra (170)
★☆☆☆
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is a nice tasty tobacco that burns like a house on fire. The taste has never been worth the tongue-blisters for me. Ouch!

1 person found this review helpful.

Vaperluvr60 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Vaperluvr60 (2)
★★★★
Medium Medium Medium Very Pleasant

It's hard for me to quantify how much I love this blend.....if I were limited to one blend, this would be it...thankfully I'm not as I enjoy so many others but this one just does it for me. First I want to say that any who have bought this in the tin and found it objectionable should get some in bulk.....I buy it in the 1 lb bags and find it quite a bit different than in the tin. In the tin, it seems to me to be much like other Mac Baren blends in that there is a pressed element to it which to my estimation, holds too much moisture.....in the bag it is another animal. This blend has this delicious aroma...both in the pouch and in the room...a sweetness with a hint of Latakia but not so much as to be off putting.....just enough to give it an extra dimension beyond an aromatic and in bulk it is not pressed together but rather the opposite, a coarse loose shag of an affair that requires some care when packing so as not as to not get soft spots...the 3 level pack works best for me. I like it in a large bowl because the flavors seem to come out better for me plus that room note fills out the flavor as well. Cool, dry and flavorful....if in the tin, rub it out very well.....fluff it up as best you can and let it air dry for a bit before packing....firm but not tight.....a good charring light then go at it again.....a pipe is to be savored they say....this blend lends to that and then some! Oh.....and go slow....this blend burns well when done right and stays lit very well.....when done right.....as another here suggests....the ember should shift about, from here to there, funny.....I love to play with this stuff.....the complexity of flavors changes so much throughout the bowl....as I said...my favorite!

Pipe Used: Charatan's special and Big Ben Nairobi

Age When Smoked: varies....I've got a lot of this stuff!

Purchased From: pipesandcigars and elsewhere

Similar Blends: Iconic blend......been around since the late 50's.......none that I can think of...pretty much stands alone..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Coda Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Coda (18)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Tolerable

Plumcake is a tobacco that "brings the thoughts back to old times." A mix of bright Virginias, Burley, "Mac Baren" Cavendish, and "just a touch" of Syrian Latakia, all blended with Jamaican Rum. Plumcake is nuanced, but not terribly complicated. Interesting and pleasant, this is not a blend that I would call a favorite. It's essentially an American English; a light Latakia blend with a topping of some sort. Not horrible at all, it's just not my cup of tea...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CTS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CTS (126)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Recently purchased a tin stamped NOV 2011 on the bottom label. Blend required no drying time - seemed just right out of the tin. Aroma in tin is what I would expect slightly fermented, soured, sweet golden raisins to smell like. Not bad, just a bit different. Initial flavor was a bit like a dilute steamed condensate of what I smelled in the tin. Once settled in, particularly upon sipping, I pick up the burley, accompanied by dried figs with a touch of smokey molasses. Very complex, definitely a sipper to pick up the complexity of the blend. Smoked in a medium bowled Savinelli with balsa filter. I got no rum, per se, but definitely picked up a consistent background flavor. To me it is different than The Solent Mixture. 3+* for what it delivers.

Pipe Used: Savinelli w/Balsa 6mm

Age When Smoked: NOV 2011 stamped on label.

Purchased From: Smokes on Burdick, Kalamazoo, MI

Nobody has rated this review yet.

cjone107 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
cjone107 (15)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Tolerable

Not a bad blend, but not really my style. The other reviews saved me from some nasty tongue bite. Even puffing slowly got me pretty close to a burnt tongue. I love the taste of this when I can get at it. The latikias seem to overpower it for me. On good puffs, there's a wonderfully sweet rum taste, but I can't stand the inconsistency. The room note is pretty good for latakia, but it's clearly not an aromatic.

Pipe Used: Briar & Corn Cob

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Smoker's Choice - Bloomington, IL

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mville Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mville (4)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend has a very nice smell out of the tin, can't really explain what it's similar to. Kind of plum or raisins. Tast pretty mild and is very enjoyable. A little change from English and aromatic.

Pipe Used: MM country gentleman

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: P&C

Nobody has rated this review yet.

LarsFiskaren Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LarsFiskaren (5)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium Tolerable

The pouch smell is interesting, dark and smokey, with something sweet like dates or figs and alcohol. Wasn't sure if I would like it. Took some getting used to, but I like it. It has to be smoked carefully and very slowly or else it will destroy your tongue. Smoking it with a filter also helps like previous reviews stated. Aging the tobacco also really helps to make it more mellow. Probably due to the latakia, the room note is not very pleasant. Pairs great with whisky. An interesting blend for true pirates. Arggh mateys!

Pipe Used: BigBen briar

Age When Smoked: 2 years

Nobody has rated this review yet.

blindmansleeps Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
blindmansleeps (4)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

Many have written about the bite from Plumcake, but I think there's an easy, non-filter way around it. MAKE SURE you're smoking this on the dry side, perhaps even a little dryer than you smoke any other blends. In my experience, drying out the tobacco quite a bit seems to eradicate the bite, and even enhances the flavors.

And, boy, those flavors are something else. Over the past few weeks, this has become one of my favorite blends. It's a very mellow flavor, quite relaxing. The best way I've been able to describe this taste is woodsy with a sweet tingle from the Rum. I love mushrooms--my wife and I probably eat a couple pounds a week--and this flavor reminds me of a Portobello mushroom smoked over a campfire (our version of a bonfire dinner). It's a wonderful tobacco, and I'll always have some on store. Always.

Just make sure you smoke it dry.

Purchased From: Shamrock Beverage and Tobacco Shop; Johnson City, TN

Similar Blends: Mac Baren's The Solent Mixture (though I find Plumcake more woodsy).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

New update (2014/03/18) of original review below: I've finished my second piouch of this blend using only my filtered pipes (Ascorti rusticated billiard, Bjarne Squashed bulldog, Peterson billiard, Medico Varsity billiard) and I am upgrading my rating from 2 to 3.5 stars. Once you let this dry out sufficiently and gently draw its smoke slowly from the bowl you get a consistently delightful experience. This has become one of my infrequent (only because its rare I can devote an entire evening to such hedonistic activity) but truly enjoyable evening activities going very well with a cup or three of Lapsang Souchong while listening to mellow blues or soft soul music its almost enough to make you feel like you are floating away on a blissful carpet of smoke. Original Review (2013-12-08): I could not get either Virginia # 1 nor Symphony at my local tobacconist so I thought I would give this a try. Although I am not a regular smoker of aromatic's I risked this on the basis of its tobacco blend versus its Rum casing. Looked great and smelled intriguing in the pouch and seemed relatively dry. Using the Frank method I filled a GBD billiard bowl lovat and commenced to char the top. Then, with anticipation I fired up proper. Quite some time back when I took up the pipe again (with V # 1) I learned about the Mac bite so I proceeded with caution. I really could'nt have gone any slower as proven by the fact the pipe went out twice in the first 15 min. Despite my best efforts I was unable to avoid the lava like stream that was drawn across my poor tongue. I gave up after 20 minutes and left the pipe to cool. An hour later I gave it another go (this time in a corncob) to be faced with another volcanic eruption. A good coating of milk seemed to asuage my pain and I left the pipes abandoned for the remainder of the evening. So now its another day and my pipe beckons. NO! NO! I said. I came to tobacco reviews and proceeded to see just what I had parted with my money to get besides a blistered tongue. I was baffled by many of the 4 star reviews until I encountered one which said Plumkake needs to dry out somewhat and another which claimed that he uses a 9mm filter pipe and has never experienced tongue bite with this or any other blend. To the pipe drawers I went as I was sure I had a couple of pipes that met that criterion. Indeed I found my Bjarne squashed bulldog. Another couple of drawers later I found the box of filters. I put a new one in and then dumped sufficient plumcake on the table to fill it and went away for an hour. Okay I thought its dryer and I have the filter pipe so here goes. Did someone sneak into the room while I was away and switch the tobacco? It was delightful, smooth creamy smoke full of body (burley?) with ever so faint a touch from the Syrian latakia. 10 minutes later (with no relights needed) I was still enjoying this to an extent I would not have believed possible after my initial experience. The virginia's and the cavendish punctuated the smoke with sweet interludes all the way through the first 2/3 of the bowl when the Syrian seemed to assert itself ever so reluctantly. I'm going to have to try this in my 9mm filtered Peterson billiard next just to confirm the filter makes the difference. In light of the latter experience I will likely be smoking the remainder of this pouch and at that point I'll determine whether to buy again. So, thanks to two reviewers advice - dry it and use a filter pipe, I got to enjoy this offering. My advice is for you to follow their advice and if you do not have a filter pipe do not buy this.

Pipe Used: All filtered - Ascorti, Peterson, Bjarne, Medico,

Age When Smoked: new pouch

Purchased From: Baroca Tobbaco, London, ON, Canada

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Broken pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Broken pipe (3)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild Pleasant

This was my first encounter with plumcake and for me it was and still is a good one. As you pop the tin you can smell a nice sweet and slightly spicy rum note as well as a smoky English style tobacco smell. The pack on this blend is easy. Once lit however, you will need to have a good tamping routine/ timing so this blend is for a more seasoned pipe smoker. The room note is amazingly sweet and smoky and smells as it does from the tin. This blend burns very nicely down to a fine white ash. From start to finish this blend is a great smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

plumcake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
plumcake (2)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I just so happened to be enjoying a bowl of this fine tobacco when I created my profile, hence the alias. I am an English tobacco guy and normally don't stray too far from stuff like Mcclelland Brown Labels, Christmas Cheer, Rattray's and the like. However, the name of this tobacco sitting on the shelf at the shop caught my attention...and I figured I like plums, why not. I do not catch a whiff or taste of plums when smoking this, but man I certainly do enjoy everything else that comes through. For me, it does bring to mind of being on a wooden ship with pine pitch and tar and the smell of the ocean. The tobacco flavor is there and while I would label this as an aromatic compared to my normal smokes it is a very mild aromatic. The Latakia is just enough to enjoy and the burly is great. I'll always have a tin or two of this on hand.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Right Reverend Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Right Reverend (35)
★☆☆☆
Medium Mild Mild Tolerable

A bit disappointed by this. The tin note was, to my poor nose, of black olives. I know, weird. Cut kinda big, so it did not stuff well in my pipe. It lit okay and burned alright, a bit on the hot side. The problem was I was looking for an mild aromatic, you know with a name like plum cake... But found a mediocre Latakia blend. I could not taste any rum, nor much anything else. The room note was nothing to right home about, not disgusting, not pleasant. Did get a little Vitamin N kick. By the number of reviews it looks like quite a few like it, I think I will have to pass on recommending this, and pass on the rest of the tin to another.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PhillyB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PhillyB (41)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Let me begin by saying that time is your friend with this blend. At first it bites too much and just comes over as harsh, but after a while of having the tin opened it mellows and becomes very pleasant. When I first smoked this it bit quite a lot but through that I got some very good flavors. So I decided to smoke it a few more time to give it the benefit of a doubt. Once I got up to maybe the third or fourth bowl it was VERY good! The two obvious flavors that it gives are spice from the Latakia and a sweetness from the Virginias. It tastes really very good but would not be an everyday smoke (I smoke irregularly anyway). A good treat smoke. My only problem is that the cut is a little too broad and requires constant tamping to keep lit, rectified by a much tighter than usual pack and a bigger bowled pipe.

Pipe Used: Turck's Select Lovat

Age When Smoked: 0 -1 years

Purchased From: Brown's Cigar Store

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Fife&Drum Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fife&Drum (22)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

The pouch aroma of this blend reminds me of Escotericas "And So To Bed" but without the anise component and less Latakia. This blend is well balanced with all its ingredients. I like the addition of the Mac Baren Original Cavendish. It helps support the Latakia's mild smokiness. Good sweet Virginias as well. My tin was a bit moist so I dried it a bit more before smoking. Definitely smooths this mixture out as well as reduces the little bit of bite/hotness. The rum casing makes this a pleasant smoke. Good.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Planet Scott Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Planet Scott (12)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Fairly well balanced smoke. Not too sweet with a slight English character. There are others I prefer, but this is a decent, solid smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (574)
★☆☆☆
Mild Medium Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

I found this blend to be very hot burning, whether dry or wet, and it was quite tasteless, the aroma was vapid as well. A friend of mine said it smelled good, and as is due course, most aromatics smell nice, but taste badly. I cannot recommend this product.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

The appearance and aroma of the tobacco is lovely and rich. The rum is present in the tin note, and when smoked it is present in a different way, adding spice and zing. The pinch of latakia is nice. Fruity and spicy with a decent strength for satisfaction. I finished the tin faster than I usually do.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Taraban Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Taraban (9)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full 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.

PC Plod Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PC Plod (39)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

This is latakia in its tasty plum pudding role. Not the penetrating odour of a campfire. This smells and tastes very good indeed.

I suppose Plumcake is the so called Danish Classic type: slightly more aromatic than plain tobacco, but the aroma doesn't detract from the full satisfying tobacco flavors underneath.

I use the Frank packing method. Which gives a cool fragrant slow burning smoke. This has never disappointed me in over four decades of smoking. Though it's a tad spicier now than it used to be. Which is good.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

erthbound0 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
erthbound0 (8)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

UPDATE: After smoking this several more times I notice there is a lot of tongue bite. So much so that I have to bring it down to three stars. However, don't let that discourage you from trying this especially if your tongue can withstand a lot of punishment.

No matter what other reviews you read about this tobacco it is a MUST try.

I believe the people who gave it negative reviews were expecting something other than what this tobacco tries to be. If you love aromatics but also want to get a taste of great tobacco Plumcake accomplishes this wonderfully.

The Latakia is so well done that the only word to describe it is beautiful. It is a note hung high in the air, that wavers there for the entire bowl. It is not overpowering, but it is there and taste so well as the backbone to the bowl.

The smell is intoxicating. The Latakia adds a nice spice to the air and it doesn't offend others like heavier Latakia mixes.

If you are like me and want a classic pipe tobacco taste with a smell that won't send people running for the hills this is perfect. Great for the mornings. Definitely part of my rotation.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tony M Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tony M (6)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I packed about 2/3 of a bowl in an Pete System 307 on my way to campus this morning. From the get go I definitely picked up on a plum (or at least generic stone-fruit-y) sort of flavor. It was very nice, much more subtle than, say, Solani Festival. So long as there was just a hit of spice in the background it was good. If I ever got an exceptionally spicy puff I backed off for a bit, and as such kept this pretty cool from start to finish -- no tongue bite here! I certainly can't call this a particularly complex blend, but it was very enjoyable, and I'm already seriously considering making it my morning pipe tomorrow, too. I certainly think this is worth giving a try -- though as the MacB tins are large, maybe see if you can get a sample or two from a friend!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hiplainsdrifter Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hiplainsdrifter (8)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild Full Tolerable

This review is for a 30-year old tin of Plumcake that I recently cracked open. Pretty dark stuff after all that aging. Tin notes are reserved dried fruit on molasses and some spice. Looks like ribbon cut with some broken/lightly rubbed flake. Moisture was about right, maybe just a little dry. Smoked perfectly with one light after the char. Easy to keep lit. This responds well when you push it- of course most MacBaren blends are touchy and will bite you- maybe this stuff does too, but not when it is this aged. Flavor is very well rounded- nice robust tobacco taste- seems like as advertised Virginias are at the forefront, seems like some Burley can be picked out too. A bit of sweetness, but it tastes natural- I assume this has a topping but the flavor tastes more like natural tobacco sugars. I could definitely pick up on some fruit. No rum taste to speak of, although that may have transformed into the subtle spice. Very smooth with great smoke. Room note is ok- not going to impress anyone but it isn't stinky. Seems like I have little reason to own other tobaccos while I have this lying around. A great treat!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I bought a 50g pouch and was in heaven. As others have already noted, the note in the pouch was fruity and rich. New pouch, but did not need much dry time before lighting, burned well with very few relights. I liked it so much I bough a pound as a daily go to and the bulk was equally as good though I would not a tad damper than the small pouch. In bulk I gave it time in my tobacco jar, and once in a while (when rushed) I did not give it any time to air and it got a bit hot and a slight bite. The spice on the tongue and flavors that came and went kept me interested through a pound of the stuff. I would alternate though between it and some milder tobaccos. I loved the room note though a few folks did not enjoy it as much as I.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Several years ago in a search for tobaccos resembling Presbyterian or Cairo, my local tobacconist handed me a tin of MacBaren Plumcake. The memory of opening that tin is indelibly burned; I would have been satisfied if I never found a match to light it, just sniffing the tin and letting the fruity/figgy/rum aroma fill the car would have been enough. But I lit it, and I smoked it, I smoked it almost continuously for the rest of the day, man was it tasty.

To that point, I'd never smoked anything from MacBaren and I was about to learn there was a price to pay for my over indulgence that day… By the time I was ready to retire that evening, looking in the mirror I was shocked to find that the tip of my tongue was not a weepy, scab encrusted, open wounded stub with steam slowly drifting from it, I was bit... badly. I had been bitten before, easily traceable to bad technique on my part but I don't know if it was the curing process or the casing they use but some of Mac Baren's blends have a real knack for unprovoked tongue attacks. The lessons from that experience were acquiring the knowledge of properly packing a pipe and practicing the technique of a long cool smoke, barely keeping the ember alight.

Along with those lessons, the discovery of Peterson's "P Lip" and Savinelli Dry system pipes put blends like Plumcake happily and prominently in my rotation and is now my go to smoke, great with morning coffee or afternoon tea, providing a nice little buzz to accompany the caffeine. The aroma is what I judge every other Virginia by.

Best smoked slowly and contemplatively enjoying every nuance this tobacco has to offer.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

One of best blends of Mac Baren. Recommend it even for the beginners.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PeterD Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PeterD (79)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

My first experience with this tobacco was in the early 60's. I prefered matured virginia plugs/mixtures/flakes, but I liked this tobacco and kept it around for many years. In the late 80's I smoked it off and on for a few years,then put it aside again. Last year, I picked-up a tin and while the tobacco has changed in taste and texture from the earlier versions, the basic blend is still there.

I recently purchased a 1 lb. package of this which had a manufacture date of October 2010. So about two years to mellow a bit. Frankly, I like this tobacco...not highly refined or complex, and sometimes I like that. It behaves well in any pipe and burns fairly clean. The earlier versions were far more "sweet" to my taste and I didn't care for that at all. This most recent bag does not have that overly sweet taste to it. I taste a more natural tobacco taste, and enjoy the interplay of the four base tobaccos which is quite nice.

Enjoyed with coffe/tea or a wee dram of single malt...

...a pipe is to be savored...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr.sadik Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.sadik (100)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Full Strong

although i wouldnt address this tobacco as an aromatic (i know it is cased) but the room note isnt friendly by all means. it can be translated into few people as the oriental scent sticks? regardless to that the tobacco have a superb flavor and perfect burning quality. very smooth tasting and and sweet notes to it. it behaves just fine in any given pipe regardless to the packing method and it has a considerable nic kick to it. very recommended for non aromatic lovers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JustOneforMe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JustOneforMe (28)
★☆☆☆
Very Mild Medium to Strong 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.

Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (227)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Let me first state that my review is based on a tin that is almost 10 years old . The blend is creamy, with just a touch of spice and no bite if sipped. Flavors from any toppings, this tin once had, are almost totally gone, so the resulting tobacco is somewhat bland but pleasant. I personally have many other styles of tobacco that I prefer, so I would not be a buyer again, however , this could appeal to many smokers.

Would agree with reviewer " Corncob1" , below

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RobD Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RobD (2)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I have only smoked 2 bowls of this tobac. But I really enjoy it. Not too strong, but lots of taste. The description says a hint of Latakia, but I taste more than a hint. But not overpowering. I have smoked MacB's Club Blend, Vanilla loose and Plumcake. I like all 3. Not much tongue bite for me with the blends. This is kind of like a mild English to me. Nice flavoring. I smoked it in a large bowl straight pipe. A medico that I have smoked for years. Recommend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

newsandtraffic Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
newsandtraffic (17)
★☆☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

As someone who had been & on & off again pipe smoker over the last several years. But have now taken it up full time & placed away my other vices. I had read the tin description on Plumcake for years. For some reason or another this blend really interested me. So, several months back I decided to order up a tin & giver a try. Not so fast! The interest ended upon the 1st smoke of this blend. Not sure exactly what I expected or didn't expect. This just wasn't it. Seen others write about tongue bite. That wasn't it for me. Or, not much of it anyway. Certainly not the room note I expected. I also asked my room note detector, my wife. Who said she couldn't stand that smell." I'll be the 1st to admit I'm an aro guy. If that is what this is or was supposed to be. It isn't. If it isn't I can certainly see why. I'm not exactly sure what it was or was not for me. So I'll just leave it there. Recommended? Nope, not by me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gunner525 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gunner525 (46)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Gave this blend a try this morning. I had high hopes for it because of the fact it's been around for over 50yrs and has had pretty good reviews. However, I didn't like it nearly as much as I wanted to. The Syrian Latakia was pretty evident in the blend to me, and I just am not tempted by Lady Latakia. To me she's the Kim Kardashian of tobacco. Others may find her gorgeous, but she does absolutely nothing for me. Me I'm more of a Drew Barrymore, Sasha Alexander kind of guy. Give me a nice VA/Burley blend and I'm happy as can be. So if you're looking for a twist on Latakia or are interested in giving Lady Latakia a try pick up a tin.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Corncob3 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Corncob3 (26)
★★★★
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

I've seen a lot of mixed reviews regarding this blend. After the minor praise by some and a majority of disses by others, I finally decided to give Plumcake a try. It's one of those blend you have your eye on for a long time, but never get around to making that brave step, of giving it a light. Why did I wait so long? And I'm proud to say, it will be in my rotation from now on! It reminds me of Mac's Navy Flake. This has more spice(the Latakia used more of an accent than out front), the right pinch of sweetness and the rich character we all crave in our bowl. Not to mention Plumcake's delightful room note. As one reviewer pointed out, this is meant for sipping. And he's right. It's a blend you take your time with. Be sure not to pack this blend to tight. Give it a good two or three false lights, sit back and be prepared to be rewarded. One word of advise, be sure to give your pipe a good scrubbing with a bristle pipe cleaner before hand. This blend can clump up on you if you let your pipe build up for too long. As far as tin aroma goes, don't be put off by the pugnent fig-like smell after opening the tin. This will die down after a few days. Trust me, Orlik's Golden Slice and Honeydew Melon have a much stronger tin aroma. I give Plumcake 4 stars. If you like Mac's Navy Flake and want more richness and spice, this is a worthy companion.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blue Bayou Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blue Bayou (59)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Very Strong Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Tongue bite is the reason it didn't get 5 stars. This isn't the same Plumcake I smoked back in the '60's, which was dark and sticky. Too bad they messed with it. Strong rum-raisin overtones-- smells great in the tin. Too many starfish on the beach to buy it again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr. G Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr. G (13)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

As one of the few MacB blends available from my local tobacconist, I felt compelled to give it a try. The tin note was very interesting - the exact, almost petroleum-like bouquet of lapsang souchong tea with a hint of dark fruit. The appearance was very pleasing to the eye - golden ribbon with dark flecks of burley. In the pipe, the best combination turned out to be a small chamber briar with a light pack, frequent light tamping, and a gentle touch with the flame. Beyond this, it can heat up with a vengeance and if you expect a one light bowl and a low-maintenance smoke, this will be a disappointment. This is a sipping tobacco of the first order, and a gentle touch brings out nice spice and dried fruity notes with a slow crescendo of sweetness about half way through the bowl. The rum topping was taciturn in this blend. The latakia is present, yet understated and would be a nice introduction for the uninitiated to this strain. I have yet to try it in a corncob and hope that this might mellow it a bit for my customary, more rapid, cadence. Room note passes the acid test (my wife) with the toasty aroma of creme broulee. Not an all-day smoke by any stretch, but a nice addition to my once-in-a- while tier two rotation when contemplation and a gentle smoke is the order of the day. Recommended

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Capt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Capt (120)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

If you can handle the tongue bite, by all means test drive this blend. Good flavor, I just can't get past the charring light, it burns me that bad. I purchased my tin back in 3/06, and even with 5.5 years of proper storage, still burns my mouth.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

smoke dog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
smoke dog (10)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Upon opening of the tin, the aroma was like fermented raisins mixed with hay. Definitely a very interesting scent. Almost a farm like smell. The tobacco itself is a golden hue and some darker colors which may be the cavendish. Its a bit moist in the tin but I had no problems lighting or keeping it lit. As for the dreaded "bite" I really sensed none. It does burn a bit hot so I don't suggest sucking it down, but this stuff definitely has some spice, which I believe some smokers may mistake for tongue bite. It has a wonderful sweetness that lingers on the palate well after the bowl is smoked, which pleased me. The room note was average. I enjoyed this tobacco very much and am looking forward to my next smoke.. a good afternoon/evening smoke which I highly recommend you try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Yes, this will do nicely. Rich, without being over bearing, aroma from the tin. I don't get the rum note but I do get plums or perhaps raisins. A nicely balanced taste whilst smoking it with a pleasant background of freshly baked fruit cake, most peculiar. Room note is good, not overpowering but you know that you are smoking tobacco and not an incense stick. My test of room note is coming back to a room in the morning and taking a big wiff. This tobacco passes the test for me. Very nice without that god awful stale cigarette smoke smell. Treat this with care and you will be as happy as a happy thing. Be gentle and don't puff on your pipe like your the Flying Scotsman going at full tilt. If you do, your tongue will feel like your licking shards of glass. Enjoy.This is Mrs Koala's favourite room note and so I get to stay in the gum tree to 'ponder'. This I have upgraded to 4 stars (highly recommended). Why? Because I really like this, period.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Davie Jones Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Davie Jones (61)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Edit 19 Oct 2011

Well I had originally bought 3 tins. For some reason, I kept the other two. A week ago, I decided to open one of them, which had reached 1 year old. Look at this: this is a totally different tobacco. Dominated by BUs, the spiced CA and the rum topping, it does not bite. This is a very good tobacco. The rum topping is there at first then progressively vanishes, leaving BU and VAs play together, with an occasional spiceness from the CA. So, here's my advice: wait a full year before you pop open the lid on Macbaren tobaccos. You will probably not be disappointed. recommended and yes, I wil rebuy.

_________________________________________ Original review____________________

I am having the hardest time with Macbaren since a good while. Besides LBB, Golden Extra, HH Syrian Latakia or HH Acadian Perique, I find them either bland in taste, or they bite.

I really enjoyed the rum topping in Plumcake, but there was really nothing distinctive to it and, after a bowl smoked rather carefully, my tongue was still irritated most of the next day.

I believe this tongue bite is created by the additives introduced in the tobacco for its good preservation.

Too bad: the combinaison of loose cut VAs/a bit of latakia with partially rubbed - out burley flake made for a promising combustion/ flavor combination...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr. Scott Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr. Scott (82)
★☆☆☆
Strong Mild to Medium Full Tolerable

A strong tobacco with sour notes that come in and out, quite prone to tongue bite if not sipped carefully. No sweetness, a savory tobacco that will not be everyone's cup of tea. The topping gives a strong "rum" flavor which disappears halfway through the bowl. Leaves an unpleasant sour ghost in the pipe for your next smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RyeWhiskey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RyeWhiskey (43)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

Plumcake, a very nice, relaxing smoke on the porch is how I like this one. The tin aroma is nice, a slight rum scent with some latakia and something else? It beckoned me to give it a go and I must say I really enjoyed it.

I didn't get any tongue bite, though I did get a bit left in the bottom that I had to scoop out. While smoking it, you can sense a faint aroma of rum and you do indeed get a 'smokey' wafting smoke that reminds you of the ship-like areas. That is the rum and the latakia mixing, I'd imagine. In the mid-part of the bowl it got a bit more sweet, and by the time I got to the end, I was already looking forward to the next smoke, all five times I've had this blend.

I am already planning on purchasing this tin again, to put away for use after I deplete this one. This was tried in briars and a corncob and the cob was an equally pleasant experience.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipelovingcalvinist Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipelovingcalvinist (68)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Hmmm- I'm not entirely sure about this one. Notes of sweet and spice and, like a previous reviewer, I detected the distinct aroma of tar treated docks-which was quite pleasent. This is not an everyday tobacco for me but something to be smoked every now and then.

soli Deo gloria

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TheWanderingRecluse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TheWanderingRecluse (4)
★☆☆☆
Medium Medium to Strong Medium to Full Tolerable

I favor aromatics. I tried this on a recommendation given that it has a "light" addition of Latakia (which provides a very smokey, meat-roasted taste). I've tried other stronger Latakia blends before and found that this tobacco acts as a nice "introduction" to stronger, Latakia blends. I personally, didn't like it. There is an excellent, sweet and heady taste beneath the smokey, burned meat smell and I suspect it would have been a good smoke had the Latakia been omitted. I personally can't recommend this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Opening the tin, the delicious aroma of baked fruit and dark sweet rum seems to jump out at you. The smell of the cooked fruit mixed with the rum spirit reminds me of the overripe fruit left behind in apple orchards after the harvest - as the fruit decays and ferments on the ground, it fills the air with a heady, fruity, beer-like aroma. Within this scent you can easily pick out the latakia. Faint grainy notes from the Virginia are there but are more deeply hidden in the sweetness of the dark rum casing.

In the pipe, the fruity rum flavor is dominant but not unpleasantly so. The Latakia is not lost in the sweetness of the casing. The whole affair held up by a framework of rum soaked Virginia and Burley. The latter adding a decent nicotine boot.

Like others have pointed out, this dog can bite. You can control the tongue barbeque by careful packing and puffing. Sort of a high maintenance smoke, so be diligent.

The flavors are nice, light to medium casing. Lightly cased aromatics are great for breaking up the routine of my tobacco rotation. This one won't be my first choice, but it's not bad at all.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Shillelagh3 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Shillelagh3 (2)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I should begin by noting that this was the first non-aromatic blend I've ever tried. In fact, with a name like “Plumcake,” I was expecting a sweet, candy-coated aromatic. This blend is anything but sweet and candy-coated, but that's not a bad thing. The name is just a little misleading is all I'm saying.

Plumcake is a mixture of Virginia, Burley, Mac Baren Cavendish, and “a touch of Syrian Latakia.” The tin note was smoky, a little like Georgia barbecue (pork) or smoked meat, with little nutty undertones. It was different from what I expected, but not bad. In fact, it was quite intriguing, despite my aromatic tendencies.

At first light, I was getting flavors of tar (or was that rum?) and smoky flavors (perhaps the “touch” of Latakia). Actually, the tar was more like creosote, and it reminded me of an old wooden ocean pier I used to go to or even this big pirate ship that housed a seafood restaurant, where we used to go eat while on vacation in Florida. Either way, I was getting a definite seafaring aroma on some level. Perhaps this was the power of suggestion, since the tin label also reads “Navy Blend” under the “Plumcake.” Anyway, I smoked it slowly, so it was a cool smoke with very subtle bite. It was a relaxing smoke, with a medium strength and flavor. I tasted more tobacco than flavoring. If there was any flavoring, it was mild. I'm not sure what the esoteric “Mac Baren Cavendish” is, but it was subtle. Middle way through the bowl, I was still tasting the “tar,” but also picking up on roasted nuts, then a tiny hint of sweetness toward the end. All in all, it was a pretty tasty, satisfying smoke. It had a pleasant to tolerable room note. Out in the open air, it's fine, but it could possible become less tolerable in more confined spaces. My wife approved.

I should add that I was having some serious issues with moisture and gurgling. It seems like I was shaking out my pipe every minute or so. This is probably due to user error, I should admit: Since I'm a little new at tobacco storage, I made the mistake of putting the tobacco in a sealed glass jar with a fully loaded pouch moistener, so I should've expected a swampy smoke from the beginning. Or maybe I'm drooling down the stem. Who knows? In fact, I was unable to smoke it all the way to the bottom, much to my chagrin, as it was a tobacco bog down there. Perhaps, I will dry it out a little before my next smoke, and yes, there will be another smoke, as I highly recommend Mac Baren Plumcake Navy Blend, despite the aforementioned setbacks.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BuckyOHare Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BuckyOHare (2)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I bought two ounces of this loose the other week, mainly based on the reviews on here. I have now smoked six or seven bowls of this so far and it puzzles me!

I get no hint of the casing, either in the pouch or when smoking, I don't know if this is because it was purchased as a loose. When smoking, it is tolerable but not as nice as some others I have tried. If anything it is a bit flat - I certainly wouldn't describe it as an aromatic, more like a "normal" tobacco. Occassionally one gets a hint of sweetness whilst smoking which I assume is the rum casing coming through. I have experienced no "bite" with it, though it does leave a taste of tobacco on the tounge for a good half hour after smoking, not unpleasant though. No problems with having to relight this, but again it is a pretty dry tobacco that I had so perhaps it would be a different story if I had got a pre packed one.

All in all then I'll enjoy the rest of my two ounces but I doubt I'll be buying this blend again

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

As another reviewer lower down I also bought a 100g tin of this at Madrid airport. They still have several left if you are passing through!

I actually like the tin note, rum is very present, but with a decent tobacco base. It was pretty moist at first but has since dried out a little after a few weeks. Like many here I was positively surprised by the good balance. It's a cased Va mix primarily, I don't detect the latakia other than it can't be classed as an aromatic because it actually tastes like tobacco, with a dependable Vitamin N presence, which presumably the latakia assists. The rum doesn't really come to the forefront whilst smoking, but it occasionally pops up and sweetens the deal nicely. Unlike the two other MacB mixes I have tried, bite is not normally an issue if you put time aside to smoke it rather than wandering around with it chuffing away in the corner of your mouth.

Overall a thoroughly pleasant smoke which I find myself loading into my dedicated 'aro' pipe almost every evening nowadays. I have some with me today to enjoy after lunch in fact.

Recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ARIMA Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ARIMA (12)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Great smoke. At first, I could not detect any rum taste or smell but after a few bowls I actually smelled the rum in the exhale. Very relaxing smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SakamotoFan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SakamotoFan (12)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

If you tried Peterson's University Flake, this tastes exactly like it. A strong musty smoke with some very light berry taste. The tin smell does not smell good, this is not my opinion but my whole family. As we all know, the tin smell isn't the taste.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Burzum Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Burzum (2)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Plumcake...what can I say? I first tried this blend on the strength of the reviews found here. It took me a while to get a good handle on this tobacco. But after smoking it for almost a year I feel I can give it a go. Upon opening the pouch(thats all I can get here! my kingdom for a tin!!!!) the aroma is of a fruitty rum note and that instantly pleasing. Smokable right from the start and didnt requier tons of relights. I have fallen in love with the aroma this leaves in my car and the room note is well liked by most. I cant seem to get much of the latakia but this has a natural sweetness that seems to come out when I smoke it in my Watson so that is all it gets now. Must be the matured virginias and burley working their magic. Smoke it slow and in a big bowl or as I have discovered or in a clay and you wont get burned. I also dont detect a casing in the aro sence of the word but more of flavouring that lets the tobacco speak for itself.This is an every day smoke for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gandalf7531 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gandalf7531 (8)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

I've heard nothing but good things about Mac Baren's Plumcake and so I got 1 oz. from my tobacconist. It came out of the bulk stock from the 1 lb. container and it was as dry as a dog turd on a hot July day. I don't know if that had anything to do with what I experienced, but I'd not be surprised if it did. I didn't think that tobacco was supposed to "crunch", but "crunch" it did. Needless to say, my first bowl of this was horrible. It tasted like turpentine and almost made me give up on trying it further. I found out a method to rehydrate it and then had another go at it (if for no other reason than it was a venerable blend and I wanted to give it a fair hearing).

The second, rehydrated bowl of Plumcake was like a totally different animal. I'm not sure what my rehydration did to the Rum casing on this blend. I could still smell some rum, but it wasn't overpowering, yet it had more aroma than before I restored it.

The strength of the blend also stood out to me. It was not super strong, but much stronger than I was used to. The bite I experienced before (not tongue bite) was still there, yet this time it was not as noxious. It made my upper palate tingle so I am assuming this is the Latakia in this.

The room note was not as pleasant as a true aromatic, yet it was not overpowering. As I smoked this, it still seemed to have that harshness to it. It wasn't the same as my first bowl (which seemed I've compared to turpentine) but it was still there. I can't say that I enjoyed it. The blend seemed to be out of balance.

Perhaps this is a good blend if you enjoy very harsh tasting tobaccos, but I think for most folks, they'd do better to try better balanced blends. It's okay, but just not my cup 'o tea.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipe row19 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipe row19 (25)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Not bad stuff. I dont like the tin aroma at all but thats the only thing i dont like about it. It packs wells, burns well, and smokes cool with no tounge bite (ive never had a problem with mac baren biting me). As for taste well i dont taste much rum in it and the latakia is kinda in the background but not much. The big players are the virginia , burley, and cavendish. The Flavor like i said dose not have much rum, but i do taste plums, figs, and rasins. All in all if you like mac baren aromatics like myself give it a try, its worth it..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Arkie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arkie (107)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

There is a hint of rum aroma as the tin is opened and there is an extremely subtle trace of rum while smoking it. It is a blend of several types of tobacco and the taste is very intricate during the course of a pipeful. No bite or goopy residue has been experienced. It is well behaved and the ash is a white powder. I would recommend smoking this blend when you are wanting a treat. It deserves your full attention while you are smoking it. I give it a solid 4 stars.

EDIT Well... it does bite the tongue a bit regardless of how slowly and carefully it is smoked so I need to take a star away from its rating. It has neen moved down on my list of favorites but it still tastes so good I will keep a tin in my cellar.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Being a Mac B fan, I thought I'd give this unusual blend a try.

In the tin, it has a beautiful mottled appearance, and a fruity note.

I've used the same pipe each time I've tried it, and with the tin having been cracked for about 2 weeks, the pipe and the baccy have become fast friends. It's a rich smoke, with nice complexity of flavors. So far, this bowl is burning to a nice powdery ash.

It does have the "Mac-bite" that some folk complain about, but as with any Mac B blend, if you pack carefully, light carefully and sip slowly, this blend becomes a friend.

It's got a bit of a "vitamin N" kick to it, so I don't recommend it on an empty stomach.

The first few bowls fresh out of the tin didn't burn well, fought to stay lit and left a wad of un-smoked dottle that wreaked.

I'm happy, after some patience, to add this to my rotation, and would recommend it for folk who like unusual blends.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarChild Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarChild (11)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

This is a nice enough tobacco, a solid two stars, but not much more. There is supposed to be Latakia in this tobacco, but I couldn't taste it for anything. The navy flake portion is nice and the topping is slightly detectable, however, if you had a bowl of anything else before this you will probably miss it. Nice tobacco, decent experience. I would have liked it more if I hadn't paid so much for it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

shudd3r2th1nk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
shudd3r2th1nk (3)
★★★★
Mild Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

been curing a bjarne elsinore with this tobacco for the past month or so, and let me inform you, this tobacco is truly delicious.

5 out of 4 stars for MacBaren Plumcake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

VentiLator Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
VentiLator (5)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

what a complexity! this surely is a good mixture. out of the pouch, it is a little too moist, give it some airing time. smokes quite well, needs a few relights + attention because it can burn hot. but using the right puffing technique, this one will burn both cool and dry, with a little to no tonguebite. the VA is dominant, giving it a nice, creamy sweet note. the burley is very noticeable. maybe i'm not experienced enough, but i cant taste the latakia. the spicyness doesn't seem to come from it. in my oppinion, they shouldn't add a casing to this one! without the rum casing, this one would provide an even cooler, tongue friendlier smoke! therefor i only give 3 stars, it is an interesting blend worth trying but then again, its not an everyday smoke + the casing doesnt make so much sense to me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

rising2angel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rising2angel (3)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Latakia is hard to detect in this sweet light tobacco. I bought it in Madrid Airport and tried it the same night I came back home.

When I opened the tin, I did not like the aroma of this tobacco, but when I smoked it I was more satisfied about it.

The taste is nicely flavoured, and sincerely I found it very sweet and fresh. The mixture of variuos kinds of tobacco requires that you smoke this item more than a time to enjoy fully all the tastes.

Surely I've clearly spot the gentle rum taste, and the sweet flavouring of this tobacco.

I think I will end my tin of Plumcake enjoing all the tastes that it can donate to the smokers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

yinyang Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
yinyang (45)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This one here, Plumcake, has to be the most interesting tobacco I've tried yet. Beautiful to look at, with various colours and cuts, it had the most off-putting smell upon breaking the seal. I swore it was Copenhagen snuff stewed with Naptha and prunes. Yich! Luckily, a little air time diminished the smell, and obvious moisture.

The taste was better, thankfully. Probably the most in-your-face complexity I've experienced to date. Whereas VA's you get subtle nuances to consider 'complexity', Plumcake's is right there: the Perique-y like Cavendish (quite enjoyable, btw), sweet VA (along with the rum?), and the heavier Burley body all make their contributions known, and felt. While I couldn't isolate the Latakia, the smoky, down to earth feel I walked away with might come from it. Speaking of walking away, each bowl I smoked was bite free, whether moist or dried out, so don't let the dreaded 'MacBite' scare you.

As it stands, Plumcake would not make an ideal all dayer, IMO; however, as an occasional smoke, it is enjoyable. I have extra cellared, but I doubt I break down and open more too soon. Then again...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Boston Bill Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Boston Bill (11)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

I had read so much about this tobacco, and it seemed to me that it had a rabid following, so I had to try it. I was pleasantly surprised: this tobacco smokes well, and once I learned to pack it right- tighter than I usually do- and how to puff it -long, slow puffs instead of deep/short/strong ones- I found it burned well with no bite. I did have some relights, but its was fairly moist when I packed it.

Flavors are very mild and pleasant- and they change. Sure, there's a rum note, but the best thing for me was that the flavor profile changed subtly through the bowl. When smoked slowly, this became a cool, extremely subtle, mild, enjoyable smoke. I ended up smoking three (3!) (iii!) bowls in a row, which is unheard of, for me.

If you're looking for unadulterated tobacco flavor, this won't be your cup of tea. But if you're looking for a sweet, pleasantly flavored, pleasant smelling (room note) tobacco that will be satisfying, I can recommend this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Claudius Stradivarius Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Claudius Stradivarius (171)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Plumcake is something else...

Stronger than most of the other blends, it combines some sort of casing with the taste of pure tobacco.

I recently bought it a tin. I can't wait to try it and share my impressions. I am convinced it will prove delicious.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Skando Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skando (155)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is the second 100gr tin I bought since Plumcake was reintroduced in Italy some years ago.

I wasn't able to end the first one a gave away to a friend. I clearly remember I found Plumcake far distant from the one I smoked in the end of the seventies. Not the same cut, not the same aroma, and nor the same body. The new one so mild and watery... and terribly bitey.

Now, some years after I decided to give it a new chance. Discovering Plumcake is not bad at all, it simply was a matter of aging. The association of the Original Cavendish and the small percentage of Syrian Latakia donates a special peaty quality to it, just a feather touch, over a VaB base. Rhum is also applied with light hand offering the tipical Navy flavour.

Unfortunately the meat is not there, and this meant to me to start playing with some additions.

Plumcake requires good smoking technique to catch all the subtle aromas, and is definately not an all day smoke per se (I mean unless it's blended with some bodier tobacco).

I will buy the remaining old tins.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

paulw Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
paulw (36)
★★☆☆
Medium Medium Medium Tolerable

This is a tobacco that I wanted to love, the touch of latakia was there It was a smokey sweet smoke I'll try again!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

the old man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the old man (14)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

I find this tobacco a bit on the strong side. It has a fruty tin aroma, and has a fine room note, and taist. I recomend that you give it a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gladi8tor96 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gladi8tor96 (50)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Ready to pack out of the tin for me... lit well and stayed that way. Very sweet, earthly flavors, with little visits time and again from the Latakia...giving the smoke a sometimes spicy note, but very briefly. It was quite a pleasant experience to smoke something that smelled so aromatic but also have the touch of flavors from an English drop in.

The tobacco from the tin does smell like plum cake for sure, but the flavors aren't as strong on the tongue. Does need sipping, but I didn't notice much of any tongue bite. Not much of a N-kick...

Great overall tobacco. It will be one in my cellar for sure...

UPDATE This has become one of my favorites. Perfect for a sunny walk with the dogs... Love the after-smell!!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JohnJelly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JohnJelly (3)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

I was wary of this tobacco. I am susceptible to tongue bite and avoid things that have a reputation to burn. I gave it a try though and have had great success and enjoyment with it. First, I am one of those people looking for a bit of nicotine from my tobacco so I tend to be a little impatient with my first bowl of the day so I don't smoke this first. I smoke this in the afternoon or evening but never directly from the tin. I have taken to pulling some out of the tin the day before and wrapping it in some paper towel and leaving it in my tobacco cabinet. It dries nicely but never crispy even with the long time period. Now that I've had success with this tasty tobacco, that some say burns, I am encouraged to try others with similar warnings and decide for myself.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

yankee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
yankee (12)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

a quality tobacco with fine taste. it has a small amount of latakia but still, you can feel it along with nice sweet taste of virgina and burley. slow smoking requierd becouse of the tongue bite, but it is not souch an issue. you will need just a little bit of experience with plumcake... recommended...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tee-dub Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tee-dub (48)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

This is too mild for me, but nice enough. The aroma and taste of rum are subtle but quite evident, and nicely complement the sweetness of the tobaccos. Latakia is harder to detect. It smacks of figs or raisins, and has a pleasant mellow quality.

It is sweet, but not sugary. The rum topping makes the bowl want to overheat, and threatens to burn the tongue if one isn't careful.

Sweet and easy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ELF Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ELF (40)
★★★★
Very Mild Mild Full Very Pleasant

This tobacco is almost IMPOSSIBLE to find here in Canada///The last 5yrs in Canada..Our Federal Government has put so many 'Hoops' for Tobacco importers to jump through...Bad Deal for us Pipe Lovers;and i'm truly not interested in smoke sail green,or.amphora brown 24/7.....Anyway,Back to the program....MacB's Plum Cake is Fantastic Out Of The Tin;Brutalty Sad out of a Pouch.P-C ages beautifully in the Tin due to the high quality Virginia Base of this mix.The blend is Macb's-Ready Rubbed...i pack my pipe as-is;unless i'm fill'g my Meer,i rub it out ultra fine..If you can get your hands on some tins(100gram{North America}/unless you have some friends living in the UK,you can get 50gram tins)...The closest replacement I've found is McCl's Navy Cavendish...Which I can still get(THANK GOODNESS)in Canada.*P-C smokes best in a small-medium size pipe. :-))

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BingCrosby Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BingCrosby (48)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

After reading all the negative reviews of various macbaren products, complete with various scare tactics like 'mac bite', 'flame thrower', and 'tongue scorcher' I was hesitant to try this despite positive recommendations from several reliable reviewers.. Finally, I gave in - and I am glad I did.. plumcake was a surprise, especially since I usually do not care for aromatics.. it is surprisingly, very natural tasting with a very nice addition of syrian latikia.. the rum is present and tasty.. virginia and cavendish supply a solid (though some might say monochromatic) core.. I did not find any tongue bite.. and I even puffed harder on occasion to see if I could see what people are referring to.. nope nothing there... so 4 stars for a nice change of pace blend for the experienced piper, or a nice introduction to something closer to an english blend for the beginner.. this blend trends delicately accross a few different genres and succeeds.. hey it has been around since 1957 for some reason! So while you are free to review based on personal taste.. I would just like ask reviewers to try to be a little more objective (and I do realize that it is impossible to be 100 percent objective).. A tobacco might bight you- but to give it 1 star might scare away people who may enjoy it.. review on flavor! if the smoking characteristics are not to your liking then maybe deduct 1 star.. but to slam a tobacco simply because you cannot either smoke it properly.. or your own personal chemistry does not happen to correspond well to it - is no the fault of the tobacco or the macbaren blending house.. feel free to express your peronal opinion - but keep others in mind.

update: although i still defend the tobacco and the blending house against some of the short nasty reviews it receives.. I have to deduct a star.. simply because this smoke is no longer very interesting to me.. it is good.. but to me not special enough to warant 4 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Uncle Arthur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Uncle Arthur (15)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Medium Full Very Pleasant

This blend is my personal treat tobacco. I keep a couple tins on hand for those times I am feeling real proud of myself and think i need a treat! I have loved the flavor and texture of this cool smoking wonderful smelling blend since the early seventies. I recommend to to about any pipe smoker. The only caveat is take it slow and easy this is like good moonshine. Made for sipping! If you get in a hurry it will bite your tongue like a rabid weasel .

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipealicious Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipealicious (21)
★★★★
Medium Medium Full Pleasant

Tin aroma is strong but difficult to describe. It has something to it of fresh wood shavings.The rum aroma is also present.

I find this tobacco difficult to pack as the cut is a mixture of broken flake and small/medium ribbon cut. Packed too loosely it will smoke wet and hot, too tight and it will clog the pipe and leave crusty dottle.

It always leaves some dottle in the pipe, no matter how I pack or smoke it.

The taste is dominated by the Burley component and I noticed I'm not much of a fan. It's overall a very high quality blend, but you must like it. I find that smoking it outdoors makes it more enjoyable. Nice for cold winter trips.

3/04/2010 UPDATE:

I noticed myself wanting to try another tin of this tobacco, despite my previous mixed feelings about this blend. The aroma and taste make this quite unique. After being halfway my second tin, I really start to appreciate this tobacco. I learnt to pack it lightly and smoke it slowly. The taste is full and delicious: a real treat. After smoking a pure Burley (Golden Blend by McB), I also learnt to appreciate a high quality Burley and I love it. I will always keep a Plumcake at hand from now on, it's delicious and special, but it takes some time to appreciate, remember that. Upgrade to 4 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rlouthian Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rlouthian (1)
★☆☆☆
Medium to Strong Mild Medium Tolerable to Strong

I had never tried anything latakia before this and i hated this stuff it tastes like smoking pencil shavings and i think the rum smell is overwhelming.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

South Mantis06 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
South Mantis06 (12)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium to Strong Medium to Full Pleasant

Plumcake has an awesome aroma to it in the tin! It smokes well, if packed right. Too loose earns you the dreaded curse of Mac Baren, too tight causes it to smoke very poorly. It seems to be a hot burner no matter what. Always do get somewhat of a cottonmouth after this one. Once this bad boy gets hot, put it down to cool or be cursed. Not one to fool with. Learn to dance with it and it's great. Kind of a tough Tango to learn though- and not too forgiving. Perhaps best smoked in a larger, thicker pipe. Taste wise the flavor comes through nicely, but again it depends largely upon how well the pipe was packed. I've had instances where I derived a lot of flavor, and others where there was very little. It seems to have a tight window to get the best taste out of it. I do recommend it though, but it requires some experimentation to get it right.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

stoked Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
stoked (6)
★★★☆
Very Mild Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

I like it. Looks like typical McB ribbon with layers of colours and good density. Nice deep dried fruit and rum scent in the pouch. It burns fine right from the store, but after a couple of months the flavours come out in spades. I filled the bowl of my pipe with moderate pressure, tamped around the edges a little and lit it up. No problems. Latakia off the top - but just enough to play hide a seek with for the duration of the bowl. Has a spicey, woodsy aspect that remains for the entire bowl. With slow sipping there's a nice mild fuitiness, very slightly sweet. Near the end it does get more peppery as someone else observed - but still quite enjoyable. I get caught up in the exploration of layers and find myself at the end of the bowl - "finished already?" I haven't been disappointed by McBaren's yet - I recommend Plumcake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Hopkins1 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hopkins1 (7)
★★★☆
Very Strong Medium Full Pleasant

I put this as recommended for one reason and one reason only.

I usually like stronger blends, but for some reason this on my palate is plum yuck.

However, some people do really enjoy the blend. As the reviews state, and its hard to refute someones taste, the blend can be cool smoking and flavorful. I will however warn against smoking this blend on an empty stomach as you may turn green.

2-3 stars.

1 star for my tastes, but 4 for others, so the blend fits into the "if your interested, try it category"

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Boomer-Z Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Boomer-Z (22)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

Having smoked my way through the bulk tobaccos at my local store I decided to try this based on reviews here. I like it. It goes into the pipe easily, lights quickly, and stays lit. I find the taste changes as it smokes and 1/2 through it really tastes nice. It is now in my rotation and I look forward to it. Give it a try!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

k_pip_k Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
k_pip_k (8)
★★★☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I really like this blend. I really like the name too. After smoking this blend, and a plethora of other "Navy" blends and flakes, this is my gold standard.

I hold all other Navy blends to be as good as this one. I just have to be careful, and to go slow with this one. It won't bite, but it can have a pretty good Nic kick.

K

Nobody has rated this review yet.

strawalker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strawalker (14)
★★★☆
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I love the smell of this tobacco when I open the bag. Its not overly moist and is a little chunky, so I like to rub it out a bit. The flavor and aroma are gentle and sweet and I count this tobacco among the top five Mac Baren offerings. Its nice and easy and easily ties with Mac Baren's Scottish Mixture.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Plumcake, along with Baby;s Bottom, Bengal Slices and numerous Dunhill Mixtures was my first exposure to pipe smoking over 40 years ago. I still keep an opened tin of Plumcake for smoking on occasion (daily to every other), and gladly so. It is not for the newbie or some proclaimed "seasoned fast puffers" by any means, but is a wonderful, flavorful, relaxing blend of superbly blended tobaccos if smoked slowly (isn't that what smoking a pipe is about?)-enjoyment!.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JESTRAB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JESTRAB (10)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Fully agree with the previous review, this tobacco really needs a practice. But then it is rewarding experience. Excellent blend of high quality tobacco with very little latakia and so incredibly well balanced casing. Once practiced, the burning behaviour is great and the taste simply fabulous. This blend has been made over 50 years now and obviously proved its top quality. To me this is one of the best (if not the very best) blend from Mac Baren. Highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Demetri Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Demetri (100)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

I have had a like-loathe relationship with Plumcake (a particular single tin of Plumcake, to be exact) for over twenty years. That is how long I have had my first and my last tin of this stuff. Every couple of years I will rehydrate this some, pack a bowl, and puff it casually, thinking, "Why don't I smoke this stuff more often? It's really pleasant". After this, I then put it back in my rotation only to shortly mess up and try to smoke it under my more normal conditions -giving it my more normal Pulls rather than puffs while driving to/from work, lunch break - and then be rewarded with an angry barracuda in my pipe as it bites my tongue off. Once aroused, the load is done, finished, over, beyond reprieve. I wondered if maybe the aged Jamaican rum was itself mixed with battery acid. I once had the exact same experience with a bunch of Hoyo de Monterrey maduro cigars - so strong (too much ligero?) that I could not put the tip of the cigar on my lips. Same story here with Plumcake - once stressed, the pipe mouthpiece is a lethal, venomous weapon. The cigar manufacturer eventually recalled all their cigars for reformulation. Unfortunately though Plumcake in ideal conditions, is tasty, mild and enjoyable. Just, not for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Wrangler Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Wrangler (15)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Plumcake. I've heard so much about this blend I just had to try it. It cost me 5 dollars more for the tin than what I paid each for my tins of Margate and Penzance. This stuff is the wettest tobac (even after leaving out all night) I've ever smoked. Gurgles within minutes of lighting. I got about five or ten puffs out of the whole bowl that weren't a total disappointment. I can tell there is something there but I don't think it is worth the trouble and definitely not worth the cost. Carter Hall is far more satisfying.

OK now for an update. This tobacco requires your full attention. You must "learn" to smoke this tobacco. I've found that if you get it lit very well at first (lots of smoke don't try to enjoy it yet!) then let it cool for a few. After that take shallow puffs and don't get it hot at all or you'll pay the price. It still smokes rather wet but now I can enjoy Plumcake. Nice nutty, toasty flavor you can't get anywhere else in the world. I'll always have some around.

If it means anything to anyone, I just bought a pound of this stuff. It gets in your head and you can't get it out! 5/7/2010

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I find Plumcake to be a nice relaxing smoke. I don't taste much rum flavoring, or any other flavor for that matter, just good tobacco flavor. I don't think I could smoke this every day, but it's nice change of pace from the more heavily cased tobaccos.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Marco1982 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Marco1982 (6)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

When I smoked the first bowl of this tobacco, I was tempted to throw away the whole pouch. It smoked hot, wet and I had a hard time keping it lit. Plus, it bit... Luckily, dubinthedam wrote on youtube that Plumcake should dry a bit before being smoked. And, well, what can I say, he's right. It smokes cooler, not wet, and it stays lit. It will bite you, however, if you draw to hard. But, if smoked slowly, you'll get a nice, unusual aromatic, hovering somewhere between aromatic and more natural tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dov of the Galilee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dov of the Galilee (22)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

My observations with this blend have only been with tins and not pouches. It is a delightful smoke but it does not go down with the other members of my family. I use to only smoke this when I was working alone in the gun towers at the prison.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ex20adayman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ex20adayman (30)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

I'm a fan of Mac Baren tobaccos and had read good things about this blend. However, I don't really like latakia so was wary about buying it. I'm glad I did though.

You can detect latakia in the pouch aroma and upon lighting up you get a whiff of latakia but then it disappears. It's a tangy, fruit rich smoke but not in the "juicy fruit" artificial sense. The latakia serves to add smokiness and depth to the fruit flavouring. It has a medium nicotine kick to it so I find it best as an after dinner smoke. I find myself reaching for this one quite often which has surprised me. I smoke it in a 9mm filter pipe so I don't get any bite.

Another high quality smoke from Mac Baren. Recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Plumcake, needs sipping, likes drying out, but on a good day there simple is no other equal...I like to pick-up a 50g pouch that's been on the shelf a few months in the shop...add a little pinch of English into the packet just to help pull out that Latakia flavor a little more and boy oh boy.

Can sometimes taste bitter so remember to age, dry and sip. A great navy blend for a real price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Satc001 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Satc001 (64)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Very Pleasant

This was another hit for MacBaren! I bought a few ounces of this in bulk from my tobacconist because I had heard so many good things about it and loved the sweet and smoky aroma in the jar. As I packed my pipe I checked out this ready rubbed flake and was delighted to see the myriad of colors in the leaf. I knew I was in for a treat.

The tobacco is sweet and smoky upon the first light. It is smooth, with a very mild nip to the tongue. This is master tobacco blending at its finest. The sweetness of the Virginias combines with the spiciness of the Cavendish to create a sensory delight. The small amount of Syrian leaf adds a nice smokiness and depth to this blend. Then, the burley! This contains great burley which provides body and a woodsy taste to the smoke, fantastic! As the bowl progresses, it becomes less sweet and more peppery, I do not notice the Rum, but it certainly doesn't hurt.

This is a pleasant blend that works both for all day smoking as well as the last smoke before bed. It is delicious and I see this becoming a staple of my rotation. Its aroma is wonderful and it burns to a clean salt and pepper ash.

Superb stuff, 4 stars!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

LeGunnCat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LeGunnCat (18)
★★★☆
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a blend I cannot recommend as whole heartily as some others, but this blend is a pleasant smoke which I will enjoy on occasion.

The tin aroma was a bit nasty to me. It reminded me very much of cheap flavored chaw. It took me a while to decide I wanted to actually smoke this blend.

I packed my Peterson Shannon using the Frank method. A note about this method. I don't sit around practicing or doing precisely what he recommends. The idea is to just create a loose middle by packing the sides in more tightly which burns down the sides due to the density and pulls the heat down the middle causing a nice cool smoke. I believe this is a good choice when smoking this blend because it burned wonderfully cool with no tongue bite even while puffing away and puffing away at this blend is important because it opens the flavor up and you can really taste the tobacs in this blend.

Many said they couldn't taste the Latakia in this blend. I can definitely taste it, but just a touch which is 'oh so nice' in there. I do not taste the rum, but sweet notes are coming from somewhere in this blend when smoked slowly early on in the bowl.

Very few relights and nice nice dry smoke. Not bad at all.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Tis the season... so I found my Plumcake tin. I once read a comment claiming the fresh tin aroma of MacBaren's Plumcake to smell of green cocktail olives. I have certainly identified this in the past however freshly opened this blend is far too moist for me. After I let the tin sit for over a year I find this blend pleasant. If you ask me, the burley is what really shines in this one. The VA and mild flavorings lend this mixture a balanced sweetness. While I can detect none through taste alone, whatever Syrian is present likely gives Plumcake some more body. It does bite regardless of how much i dry it however allowing it to mellow does reduce this bite significantly. Had my experience with several MacBaren products not been that they(so far) have a tendency to bite, I would rate this at 2 stars but I am willing to bump it to three because in the end it's a solid smoke given some time and patience.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PfeifenRaucher Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PfeifenRaucher (53)
★★★★
Mild Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Both the positive and negatives about this blend are valid. The real question is whether or not one will outweigh the other for you. Yes, Plumcake will bite if forced - but then again, what aromatic won't? Yes, it's low in nicotine - a positive thing in my book. If you fill your bowl up with this and expect to get really "buzzed" you will be disappointed and likely puff so hard you experience the aforementioned bite.

However the complex taste is really special - it really is "subtle" as others have commented. It's sweet and fruity but not overly so. The casing does not overtake the natural tobacco taste. It burns pretty dry and can be enjoyed to the bottom of the bowl. Enjoy this when your palate is clean (If someone had this after having an English blend I could see them thinking it tastes like hot air).

And I too noticed that other people take awhile to even realize you are even smoking when you have this - something about the room note just fades in to the background. The Syrian latakia adds that little something the gives it more of of a natural-tobacco flavor - if you have tried MB's HH Vintage Syrian, you should try this, as there are similarities. Furthermore, this isn't a sugar-soaked bulk aromatic that leaves a goopy mess at the bottom of the bowl.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Davetopay Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Davetopay (42)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Being a relative novice to the joys of pipe smoking, this is my first foray into "non-drugstore" tobaccos. It took a little training and several attempts to find just the right pipe and pack for this blend, but now that I have, it is a delight! I especially like the notes of heavy dried fruit when you pop the tin open. This truly makes my mouth water. I learned the hard way that you cannot rush this blend. It prefers to be sipped slowly and treated gently in the bowl or it could jump up and bite you, but it is also very rewarding, especially on a cold damp gray afternoon in November. The rum is faint and does not overpower the natural flavors of the Virginia's sweetness, the tangy burleys, and the full and peppery cavendish. This will certainly be in my cellar for a long time to come.

12/2009 revisit:

I guess tastes change, mostly due to experience. I now consider this to be a wholly average tobacco. It smells nice when smoked, the flavors have no where near the punch of the blends I have come to truly love, but it can still be enjoyable. For me one of the biggest drawbacks is the way this will ghost a briar. One very nice pipe I have will NOT let it go. I keeps rearing its head, even after a salt/alky treatment. Funny enough, sometimes this is ok, other times it ticks me off. I might pack one or two bowls a month now.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jaybee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jaybee (76)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

This is a tobacco that I have enjoyed many times over the years. It reminds me of a higher quality, virginia version of London Dock. This is not a blend for the uninitiated, as it can become harsh and hot if pushed. I really enjoy the taste; the plum-like flavoring with an occasional whisper of smokiness. Plumcake is a good example of why I enjoy smoking a pipe......variety.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrY11 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrY11 (39)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

UPDATE (Nov07) As I was not overly enthused by it, I let it aside for some time. I returned to it 2-3 months later and - to my surprise - I was somewhat happier.

What I discovered was that it is discreet. I mean really discreet. You know it, there are people who will ask you to open a window as soon as they see you holding a pipe (even when the pipe is empty and you have not smoked anything). Well, I discovered that these people do not say anything when I smoke plumcake in the same room (as long as they have not seen me light up...). They do not even understand that I am smoking...

In terms of enjoyment, it is better than I originally thought. I finished that first 100g tin and I am about to open another one. It seems that, eventually, I will try to always have some around.

INITIAL REACTION (MAY07) I am not too enthused. It is OK - not too hot-burning, minimal tongue bite and quite complex but it leaves me wanting.

Perhaps they should avoid the Jamaica Rum - I do not know...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Guyrox Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Guyrox (131)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Plumcake remains, by far, with HH Vintage Syrian ( despite they're not the same thing), my favorite MacBaren mixture.

I love the loose cut golden, brown and black leaves combined with the nice rich, ready rubbed flakes. I love the spicy / sweet rum aroma, and the moisture level, being rather low, makes it perfect to smoke. The tin description ( on this review) mentions Latakia...I've never detected such a leaf in there!

However, despite the nice smoke, the even burning and the never hot / tongue biting smoke, plus the dry smoke, it lacks in strength and nicotine kick.

But, it's stronger than me, I still go back, every once in a while, when I want a milder smoke, to Plumcake. I can't help it, I love the rich, high quality result of the whole thing. And the wife agrees to the room note...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Nick O'Teen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nick O'Teen (90)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

I hesitate to give this one a full 3 star rating because, as with all Mac Baren products that I've tried, Plumcake burns hot and bites like a cornered blacksnake.

On the positive side, the tobacco blend is of high quality and the flavoring is marvelous.

If you can smoke this one slowly enough to avoid the heat and bite, you'll have a good one on your hands.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Fofo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fofo (81)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

This is the kind of tobacco that grows in you. At first I didn't think much of it, but after a while I was reaching for it more and more. Virginia and Burley are the main players and the topping is light which allows the tobacco flavors to come through and compliments them. Nice change of pace.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I heartily agree with reviewer "AL" (below), especially with regard to the lack of bite that seems inherent in Mac Baren's blends. Plum Cake has a most pleasant tin aroma, but is a bit moist, so best to let it dry a bit. The blend's aroma and topping/flavoring is sustained in both taste and room note, but not over-poweringly so. A nice, light aromatic that is a fine change of pace (again, echoing "AL's" comments). One of Mac Baren's best efforts.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

AL Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
AL (22)
★★★☆
Mild Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have had two tins of this blend. Its one I have a pipe full of every so often as a change of pace. This tobacco smells good in the tin. It?s a mixture of browns and some black, comes rather moist and needs some air time. Plumcake is easy to load in the pipe. Plumcake and Symphony seem to be the only Mac Barens that I do not get a bite from, so I do enjoy this tobacco. If there is a touch of Latakia it is a very small amount, this is not like a smoky English blend. The taste of this blend is light and sweet. For me Plumcake burns down to a crunchy ash, mostly dark.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (263)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

Although Navy Flake is still my favorite from MacBaren, I enjoyed this smoke. The tin and room aroma are sweet but the tobacco taste still comes thru and is not overpowered by the casing. It smokes dry from start to finish without the goop of some other aromatics. As with several other of their blends, packing technique and smoking pace impacts how hot it smokes and you must be careful. Although I wouldn't choose a steady diet of this, after meals, it's great.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

giturra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
giturra (31)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Like most mac barens mixes, this one has a tendency to get hot, but if you know how to manage it, I would say that this is a great product. I was very impressed with this tobacco, after hearing so many rave reviews I though that I would eventually be disappointed, very much to my own amezement I loved it! then again, I need a copule more weeks to see how it goes, and to give a much more detailed review, but so far so good. I like its very subtle fruity, almost cherry taste,the rum I didn't detect inmediately, also there's a tiny amount of latakia, which makes it even better, anyways, this is a solid tobacco, and the mix has a great body and taste, the room aroma is very nice, so I would recommend it to aromatic smokers, it's a mix between a very light english mix and a more full bodied aromatic, and even if it's not such a strong mix, I still would recommend it to non aromatic smokers. good stuff

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Captain Pete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Captain Pete (83)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I first tried this tobacco in bulk from Diebel's in Kansas City, and liked it enough to order a tin. In bulk, it smoked very well and tasted just a touch on the light side. From the tin, the flavors were a little stronger, and the aroma more aromatic.

As already noted by previous reviews, don't pack it too tight, and slow draws is the way to smoke it. I will say that it tastes a little like Navy Flake, probably has some of that broken up in it, but isn't as tasty. I couldn't detect the Latakia, but the sweetness of the rum topping peeked through ocassionally about halfway down the bowl. I didn't like it as much as Navy Flake by MacBaren, it just didn't have the same bold flavor. But it was alright.

If you're a fan of Navy Flake, this one might be a little disappointing, as it isn't as big on taste. However, if you prefer to go in for the loosely packed stuff that you don't have to rub out yourself, and you're in the mood for a "seafaring" tabac, this will probably do. Little bite (surprising for a MacBaren blend), and stayed lit with no problem; what more could a person ask for? Just make sure you find a place like smokingpipes.com that sells it for around ten bucks a tin; anything more, and it's really not worth the price.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

rumbeard Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rumbeard (1)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

This tobacco packs well. Don't pack it too tight or it will be like sucking a not very smoky acorn through your pipe (it will remain lit all the while) Pack it just right and puff in long slow draws. Take it out of your mouth when the bowl gets hot on your fingers. It won't bite if you do this, or might bite at the level of very slightly spicy food (which I don't consider bite). Flavors are strongly cherry/almond + tobacco. Aftertaste of raisins and plums along the lines of the tin odor. This stuff smells great burning and in the tin.

I'd have to say this is one of my three favorites so far. I am relatively new to pipe smoking and would say that I like Virginias, Cavendish, and Latakia the best. I'm not as fond of Perique or Burley tobaccos. My favorite blends are Plumcake, Penzance, and a local bulk vanilla aromatic black cavendish called Cathedral.

I never let tobaccos dry on purpose nor do I roll them out. I tend to pack all in the bend/stuff/heavily tamp method. This tobacco deserves a slightly lighter tamp but once lit doesn't really go out a lot. It tends to burn nicely to a clean grey ash. I get some gurgle and sizzle but I tend to like listening to the sounds and the gurgle goes away.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Plumcake is one of the delights of the aromatic world. I smoked a pouch of this after a very long gap, but happily, in a precipitately changing world, it did not disappoint at all. I find that the flavouring is more pronounced on the nose than on the tongue, permitting the tobacco taste to come through. The latakia is undetectable but it is fun to add some blending latakia and obtain a hybrid.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Southern Mantis06 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Southern Mantis06 (2)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Very Pleasant

Plumcake has an awesome aroma to it in the tin! It even surpasses my Three Star Royal luv. I'd leave a bit out in the open, but the wife wouldn't dig that. It's also a bit pricey to use as a room freshener. Aside from that, it smokes well, but must be packed just right - or else. Too loose earns you the dreaded curse of Mac Baren, too tight causes it to smoke very poorly. There's not much window either way with the packing. Seems very picky. It also seems to be a hot burner no matter what. Always do get somewhat of a cottonmouth after this one. Once this bad boy gets hot, put it down to cool or be cursed. Not one to fool with. Learn to dance with it and it's great. Kind of a tough Tango to learn though- and not too forgiving. Probably best smoked in a heavier, thicker pipe? A Nording freestyle comes to mind. I fired this up in a Kaywoodie "Colt" which is okay for the Middleton's genre I guess. Plumcake used it as a heat exchanger, and I the heat sink. Ouch!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I opened a 3-year-old tin of Plumcake a month ago. The aroma was pleasing and the tobacco was presented attractively with a mix of very light brown, darker brown and a little bit of black in there. It was mostly rubbed out with a few flakes. There were no sticks, twigs or dust.

I found Plumcake very easy to get along with. It lit quickly and didn?t need much encouragement to stay lit. The distinctive but mild flavor is most noticeable at the beginning of the bowl. After that, Plumcake tastes mostly like a good burley with Virginia in the background. I don?t detect Latakia, though the blurb says it?s in there.

Toward the end of the bowl I tasted mostly Burley. I?ve come to prefer Plumcake to straight Burleys, because a bowlful offers a variation in flavor (unlike the mono-taste of many burleys) and doesn?t leave a flavor in the pipe (unlike some aromatics).

This is a good everyday companion and a good traveling companion, because it is eager to please and doesn?t seem to demand any particular pipe selection for an enjoyable smoke. The family likes the aroma, putting this blend in the group that will be stocked in anticipation of the New England indoor smoking season.

Some pipers have said Plumcake gives them dragon mouth, but I wonder if the problem is in the packing. Plumcake?s flakes have to be rubbed out a bit and, it seems to me, this mixture does best when loosely packed.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
★★★☆
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is one of those once in a blue moon tobaccos. After about a year in an unsealed tin I enjoy this very much. Just not often. Three and a half stars as a quality Aromatic. (Euro-style)

Nobody has rated this review yet.

poupehan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
poupehan (23)
★★★★
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Plumcake

Together with mixture and VC/lc (and to a lesser extend VA#1) my favorite Mac Blend, and a favorite overall. See the reviews of mixture for the correct way to pack and smoke it ("plug it"). This way it smokes the same way as mixture: cool and fragrant. The casing is somewhat more evident here. The added jamaican rum makes the taste reminiscent of davidoff scottish mixture. But don't be misled by the presence of latakia - if you're expecting something in the enlish/scottish style you are going to be dissapointed, take it for what it is: an elegant and refined mild aromatic, whith an excellent roomnote. Recommended

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipe Guy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe Guy (23)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

I bought a tin of this stuff simply because it seemed like a nice blend that I would enjoy during the November-December holiday times. I was really drawn to the "Plumcake" name.

Plumcake is a wonderful and elegant blend. The fine Jamaican rum and spicy cavendish give this blend a little zest without being over-the-top-cloying like some aromatics. The smoking aroma is mild sweetness with a little pepperiness and of course, fine rum. I also suffered no tongue bite with this blend, even while puffing a little fast. It can nip a little upon first light, but it gets very mellow as the bowl goes on. Plumcake smokes cool and dry. It also builds cake pretty quickly.

The tobacco comes pressed together in the tin. I had to break it up and rub some of it out when I put it into one of my tobacco jars. Also, there are little chunks of flake tobacco mixed in, which is nice. The tin aroma was unlike anything I've ever smelled. It was almost unpleasant, but now I'm used to it. I would describe it as barbecued plums. Certainly interesting.

This is a tobacco that makes me wish I had a fireplace to sit in front of while smoking Plumcake and watching the snow falling outside. Plumcake is great for those cool, crisp nights of the winter.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This is one of the most apart tobacco's I have ever smoked. It is totally different from all tobacco's I ever smoked, can not compare it with any other. Untill now it does not seems to bite. For me as an English-type smoker, this tobacco is a good one to smoke now en then. It has some smokey undertaste, in the mouth there is some sweetness and I also taste the virginia in it. The last part of the bowl for me is the most delicious part. Then all ingredients come together to get a full after-dinner smoke. I think there is not much nicotine in it, did not notice much of it however. A recommendation when you want to smoke something completly different.

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BriarLaw Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarLaw (85)
★★★☆
Mild Strong Mild to Medium Pleasant

I am updating this review because I was both unfairly harsh the first time around and my tastes are changing.

Plumcake is not a typical aromatic at all. This is no American goopy blend. It is, however, a classic Danish blend with more fullness attributable to the smidgen of Latakia.

I really have a hard time describing this tobacco other than to say it has all of the attributes of a Danish aromatic (VA tang, a bit of casing, but quite natural) with a smokey quality.

If you enjoy Danish tobaccos, or are an open-minded English or VA smoker looking for a unique change of pace, give this a try.

ONE FINAL NOTE: As I sit here today, the City of San Franciso has banned smoking in outdoor (yes . . outdoor) city-owned public places. I do not live in San Francisco but let me say for shame! All of us who enjoy the very civilized hobby of pipe smoking should take note. We are under attack by those who purport to know better. Please support liberty and freedom wherever you find it. Tobacco today . . . who knows what tomorrow. I know this is a tobacco review site and should not be political, but I felt it appropriate to comment.

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Mr. Dottle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Dottle (162)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

First, this is a very unusual VA aromatic blend that I cannot compare to any other blends I have smoked. I was immediately taken aback by the first few puffs of my first bowl of Plumcake, probably because its unique taste caught me off-guard. Some say its aroma and taste is fruity. I agree. More specifically, it tatses of plums, raisins, figs, and perhaps a touch of rum. But, in short, this tobacco grew on me. The more I smoked it the more I liked it. Plumcake will present sharpness at the first light but it does settle down into a much smoother, gentler smoke. Not an all day / everyday smoke for me but I sure find it pleasurable for a nice change of pace. Very different indeed????..and very good!

As an aside, I know a lot of folks complain about tongue bite with MB blends and the fact that some MB tobaccos burn hot. I have never found this to be the case with MB blends. I am not immune to ?the nip? but MB blends seem to treat me nicely. One thing I do with all MB blends is to hand shred them a bit over a bowl and let them air out for a short while. Maybe this is the secret, maybe not. It also helps to ?short-age? MB blends in a Ball jar (or whatever) for a couple of weeks after shredding and before smoking.

A cigarette is to be smoked. A cigar is to be enjoyed. A pipe is to be savored.

I rate this tobacco 8.5 out of 10.

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purpleronald Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
purpleronald (16)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Burns well! I'm a latakia/perique lover...so for me the 'plumcake' is an occassional change-of-pace smoke. It has a natural sweet taste that becomes more noticable after a few bowls of experience...and it's well balanced with the very mild and natural flavor of tobbaco being the prominent flavor. I like it, but it's not my mainstay. For me it's a little too mild...but sometimes that's a good thing! My best plumcake experience was driving down a country road with the window cracked open. The plumcake puffed slowly and the window draft created a nice - but very mild -sweet fragrence... All in all a nice passive smoke with just a hint of aromatic sweetness... I'd smoke it more if my wife liked its fragrence; alas it too has failed her strict 'room note' standards.

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Augie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Augie (6)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

July,2004

Upon moving into an 'extended care' facility a great distance north of my previous residence (Pt.Huron vrs. Rochester Hills) I decided time to broaden my 'bacca taste and have to admit I was drawn by the MacB testimonials about Plumbcake - so far, so good. The tin aroma was enticing, that which promised a rewarding smoke. The First Bowl, I kinda feel that one has ro smoke a couple of bowls of a particular weed, to make an objective appraisal of the blend, gave me the taste of Virginias and burleys, which I find mellow. I finished the bowl after a hiatus of supper and was pleasantly suprised at the spiceness of the Cavendish that is complimented by sweetness and Rum. Though moist and easy to pack, I was not having to re-light on Second Bowl as with the First, last night. I would recommend this aromatic for anyone not wishing to be overwhelmed!

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CaptnDan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CaptnDan (242)
★★★★
Mild Medium Medium Pleasant

Plumcake is a famous blend that I just had to try. I must say, I have no regrets.

The tin aroma when first opened was potent to say the least. Smelled like rotten fruit to me. I let it breathe for a few hours. After that, it smelled like something to be enjoyed with a fork as opposed to a pipe. It has a fruity aroma that I can enjoy without even having to light up.

The label says there is some Latakia in there as well, but I don't smell it, nor do I taste it. Latakia is referred to as a 'condiment' tobacco, and I believe that is how it is used here. It enhances without overpowering.

I also don't really detect the rum, per se. What I do smell and taste is a sweet fruity light tobacco that others in the room seem to be able to appreciate right along with me. Many aromatics are more for the other people in the room - not Plumcake. It takes the smoker into account too!

I have smoked Plumcake in different sized pipes, and I have found that a deeper narrow bowl helps keep the flavors from running over one another.

When this tin is gone, I will replace it. I think Plumcake will be in my rotation for a good while to come.

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pop-pop's pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pop-pop's pipe (96)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is one of my favorite MacBaren blends. A good quality navy blend. There are some better like Mclelland 14 but I like this blend. The topping taste like rum with some sugar and it is not overpowering. Be patient with this smoke. At matchlight it is a little harsh but as you keep going it becomes smooth. Bowl stays fairly dry. Again as with other MacBaren blends take your time with it. I don't know why so many of these McB. blends heat up. Probably due to the large amounts of virginia. A little more burley to the ratio would cool thing down. All in all a good quality smoke.

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BobThePipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BobThePipe (2)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

It was time to try Plumcake. Hoped this was the grail of aromatics, but I must say that it forces me to keep looking.

When the tin is cracked open, the smell is fruity but not completely overpowering in a candy-like way. Seems to be mixed with another smell that I can't place that tempers it a bit. Was a bit damp but not too bad.

The tobacco lights very easily. I was impressed with the quality in terms of how well it stays lit and burns evenly/smoothly. While I've heard that MacBaren blends are known for harsh tongue bites, I didn't experience it that badly at all with this one.

The taste is sweet and tastes berry-ish. Can't really say it tastes like plums but definately has a fruit base. As the bowl burns down, the taste becomes more pronounced - added depth, let me say. It is pleasant.

The room note is a bit mild for what I like but it's still appealing to the non-pipe smoker. It is not as sweet as it smells unlit...

The quality of the tobacco is better than most aromatic blends. That leaves me feeling like I smoked something at the end of a bowl. Taste is there too. However I wish the room note was a bit more potent.

I will definately keep this in my arsenal but plan to keep looking for my perfect blend.

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Art_A Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Art_A (5)
★★★★
Strong Strong Very Full Pleasant

I like this more than medium smoke. the Virginia and flue cured weed is tasteful and mellow. I would not recommend this for a novice but after you get your sea legs this is one for you to try

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WxGuy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WxGuy (95)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant

Ah yes, another fine offering in the aromatic vein from MacBaren. The Danes truly have a way with aromatics, less heavy and goopy than many American offerings. To me, the tin aroma is neither plums (as suggested by the name) or of rum (as appears in the tin description). It just smells--- good. Even compared to other MB aromatics (Black Ambrosia and Vanilla Cream come to mind) the topping is relatively restrained, maybe more on the level of MB's Highland Mixture.

My tin came a little on the moist side, and given that this is a MB w/ virginias, tongue bite was a concern. I dried it out for a couple of hrs in my desktop and then loaded a well broken in kind-of-anything bent bulldog with a wide, shallow bowl. This pipe for some reason has been good to me w/r/t tongue bite. Easily lit, it had from the first a good combination of aromatic flavor and tobacco, unlike many more heavily topped aromatics that save the tobacco taste until the aromatics have volatilized. Good stuff. Care with the puffing technique and no bite throughout the bowl. The taste was fairly consistent throughout as well, with the natural caramelly sweetness from the virginias evident to the end.

After about half a tin, my main complaint with this blend is that it is too easy to smoke. I usually smoke aromatics while driving (they don't leave lingering oppressive rank odors like my fav. Englishes) and I find that I can over-puff while thinking of other things, resulting in a MB trademark bite. But that is my problem, not the tobacco's.

I find the room aroma quite pleasant, as sampled from the slipstream, but then I find most tobacco odors pleasant, at least when fresh. Indeed this olfactory feedback is one of the rewards of smoking aromatics.

While I am loath to suggest aromatics to those who do not care for them, I feel that this would be an good occasional smoke for the confirmed virginia smoker, especially one with a well broken-in tongue.

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Checkmate Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Checkmate (23)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium Pleasant

When I opened this tobacco the smell of rum and plums reminded me of Christmas Plumcake, just like the name implies strangely enough. I tend to stay away from the sweeter aromatics but after smoking this tobacco I'm not sure if it should even fit into the aromatic category.

The plum and rum flavours don't overpower so much as compliment the virginia and burley combination. It's a completely different kind of tobacco than I've ever smoked, not quite aromatic, not quite an English blend.

The tobacco burns well with bits of flake mixed in to make it cool enough to smoke outside. It stays lit with minimal attention and tamping and I haven't had any bite at all. That being said there is a fairly high Virginia content and I'd imagine that one's tongue could pay the price for heavy puffing. The mix smokes right down to the bottom of the bowl and leaves a nice white ash.

I'm more of a Virginia and Perique man, but when I feel like something different this is the blend I reach for. I reccomend it for a nice change of pace.

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omegapd Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
omegapd (81)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

I'm a sucker for Danish style Aromatics, and always keep a tin of this open. I find that it gets much better after the tin has been opened for awhile (even a year) and some of the topping wears down. It never disappears altogether, but it does become more of a "natural" smoke than an aromatic. Typical of all MB blends, it has the perfect cut that fills a large bowl with no problem and a smaller bowl with some slight rubbing. It burns slow and sweet and can bite with aggresive puffing. The room aroma is not overpowering and it has enough strength for me to realize I just finished a bowl. It's not my favorite in the MB line (Virginia #1) but I do reach for it quite a bit. One thing I never did understand is why this blend is always more money than the other MB blends...oh well. Recommended.

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Gae Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gae (46)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Very Mild Very Pleasant

I use to smoke this alot once,but now it seem's alot milder to me than year's ago.The last few time's I smoked it,I found myself seeking something stronger.Though the taste is still pleasant enough & it didn't bite my tongue. For fairly new comer's to pipe smoking I'm sure it would be good to start with.It light's easy & is very easy to manage.Leave's the pipe with a clean looking ash at the bottom of the bowl & no goop! In it's class-I'll give it 2 & half star's out of 4.

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Mitrich Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mitrich (4)
★★★☆
Medium Medium Medium to Full Pleasant

Excellent blend! It's the one of two MB tobaccos that i like. The second is Dark Twist. I'm not a big fan of MB tobaccos, but if I was a MB fan this blend would be my all day tobacco!

RUM. In Russia we do not drink rum, we drink vodka. :) May be this is the reason wy I can't find any rum in the taste of the "Plumcake". But the rum gives very pleasant room note and smell of the tobacco in tin.

TASTE. The taste is sweet and deep. There is much of that danish stuff that can be found in every MB tobacco, but it is in full harmony with the taste of the perfect tobacco! The tobacco consists of light brown (allmost yellow) virginia mixed with black cavendish and burley. The burley has rubbed out cut like in MB "Golden blend". So you can mix them, you can smoke only virginia with cavendish and you can smoke pure burley! The taste will be different.

ROOM NOTE. The room note is truely delicious! I bought this blend first time because my girlfriend asked me to by a tobacco with a good room note. And she was satisfied.

BURNING. It seems to be the easyest MB tobacco to smoke for me! At the end of smoking you won't find anything in the bowl except dry grey ash. The "Plumcake" burns rather cool for MB tobacco.

RECOMENDATIONS. I recommend this blend to all who like danish blends

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calabashsmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
calabashsmoke (12)
★★★☆
Mild Medium Mild Very Pleasant

I must confess, I'm not a big fan of aromatics so please keep this in mind as you read this. I always look forward to trying a new (for me) MacBaren blend. These folks consistently put out quality products. I have passed over Plumcake for many years for only one reason: the MacB tin description ended with "flavoured withy aged Jamaican rum". I absolutley, positively will not smoke cased tobacco. Period. Or so I thought. So why did I break down and try Pluymcake? My curiosity got the better of me. One of the other reviewers here said that Plumcake reminded him of Redman chewing tobacco. When I first opened the can I wanted to eat this stuff it smelled so good!. The appearance is predominantly Virginia with a good measure of black Cavendish tossed in. It burns like most of the Mac Baren blends...one touch of the match and there's no stopping it! It's like your pipe has switched over to autopilot and stays there. The taste is very subtle and sweet (must be the Virginia and rum)and is very consistent from top to bottom. For an aromatic it was very enjoyable but actually way too light for my tastes. Maybe I've been smoking English blends too long but Plumcake left me...well...unsatisfied...if that makes any sense. I'll definetely smoke this as a change of pace, maybe out fishing or hiking in the woods. Recommended for new pipe smokers and aromatic lovers. As for me I'll smoke it on occasion.

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Cooksmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Cooksmoke (29)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

This is a classic from MacBaren. If you like Virginias, and just a dash of aromatic every now and then; this is a blend for you. I think the Danes do a fantasic job with aromatic tobaccos. The flavorings they add are well applied and the tobacco is real, unlike American burley goop blends.

Plumcake is predominately meduim brown with some darker Cavendish mixed in. The mixture is rather moist so some drying may be in order to suit your tastes. The aroma is mouthwatering, plums and rum, raisins. It reminds me of a Tortuga Carribbean Rum Cake.

It lights well and develops a reasonably pleasant room note. The Virginias dominate, and I recognize the Burleys from MacBarens London Blend. The tobacco is strong, but not overpowering. A good outdoor smoke in cool weather.

An absolute must as a step up for those who smoke American aromatics.

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lasix1 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lasix1 (4)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Medium Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Plumcake is one of MacBaren's oldest and most respected blends. Small wonder. This is a delightful blend with a marvelous room aroma which brings compliments from all but the most fascist anti-tobacconists enslaved by the fanaticism brought about by their opposition to the pleasures of others. It is a difficult aroma to describe. Sweet and not unlike plums, but with more of a bakery aroma. It starts out very mild and then picks up strength as you approach the bottom of the bowl. It smokes all the way down to a nice dry ash. The Virginia is predominant, but like most MacBaron blends, there is enough maturation in the tobacco to mute the harshness of the natural sugars resident in the leaf. Like other Virginia based tobaccos it will bite if smoked too quickly, but if you savor it properly it will delight your senses for well over an hour in a medium-sized pipe. I like this tobacco very much and smoke it occasionally when I want something sweeter and more socially acceptable than the English blends which I am forced by prevailing prejudices to smoke by myself outdoors.

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

I was told that this might be a good (very light) aromatic blend that might not offend a room full of people. I went out and bought a tin and resisted the temptation to smoke right away and let it dry for several days before filling a bowl.

Upon cracking open the tin I couldn't help comparing the coloring and the tin odor to Redman chewing tobacco (yes in my wilder days I used to chew it). This stuff smelled strong. The color was mostly red and orangeish brown.

It had dried by now and the pipe filled and packed very well, much like other English blends, not sticky and goopy as I expected. The charring light brought out an English-like smoke without a hint of the casing. In fact, the first 1/3 to half of the bowl was like that, a good steady English. Slightly sweet Virginia and spicy Cavendish, however I believe it was mellowed by the present Burley. The first half is a little hot until I get it under control and sit back to relax and enjoy. It also calls for one or two pipe cleaners throughout the duration of the bowl.

Then it hits. The aromatic comes out about half way through the bowl. Just a hint of sweet flavoring, proclaimed to be rum, although you wouldn't know. I would compare it more to honey. The rest of the bowl is slightly aromatic although not enough to be distracting and no more wet or goopy than another English.

Overall I'd have to say this is a great smoke for someone looking for a very light aromatic. A party smoke for sure. This won't be an everyday for me but definitely a couple of bowls a week until I find something better.

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