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Manufactured from choice, fully ripe and matured Virginia tobaccos - mainly American. An elegant flavor with a full and pleasant mild taste has been added.

Notes: Introduced in 1979.

BrandMac Baren
Blended ByMac Baren
Manufactured ByMac Baren
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
Packaging50 grams tin, one pound box
ProductionCurrently available
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Mild to Medium
Mild to Medium
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Favorite Of 2 Users

95 reviews
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Very Pleasant

A fairly natural tasting straight up light, bright Virginia flake. There's a basic citrus sweetness from the tobacco conjoining with a grassy taste - no hay - to provide a mild, gentle smoking experience. Has a minor spice note. Not a flavor bomb by any means, but it's a comfortable all day smoke that burns fairly slowly and cool without leaving any moisture at the bottom. The taste is consistent all the way through. Has a mild nic-hit. Can burn a little warm if puffed fast, but won't bite. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and needs a few relights. Can be an all day smoke.

17 people found this review helpful.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (839)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant

I bought a pound of this on sale, as the sale price of a pound was about the same as the regular price of 3 50 gram tins. Smart shopper or village idiot? Well... neither, exactly. I'd classify this as a "good" but not great smoke. I'd grade it about 2.5 stars and rounded up due to the leaf quality.

This is a pleasant mild smoke that doesn't offend as long as it's smoked slowly. Whatever casing might be in there burns off at the match or in the drying process, much like MacB's Navy Flake. This tobacco is neither complex nor does it develop down the bowl. It's just a nice friendly smoke when you're not in the mood to try anything new and your taste buds don't want to be overwhelmed. Mildly and pleasantly sweet, but not as sweet as Virginia #1. I've smoked about 6 oz of this and I'm going to age the rest for a couple of years. I wonder if the mildness might give way to a bit more zest with some cellaring.

13 people found this review helpful.

Eulenburg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eulenburg (193)
Very Mild Mild Mild Very Pleasant

This has been available on-and-off since I was a teenager (NOT yesterday) but I have the impression that the tin was somehow different. I remember first trying this at the same time as THE ORIGINAL SOBRANIE Flake ("Pure Virginia") in the green étui, and thinking this hotter and rather more syrupy.

But taken in its own terms, this is a quality product, as all of Baren's offerings, beautifully put together. The flavour is lightest Virginia, lightly sweetened. I like it better than ORLIK's Golden Sliced, because this has no burley. The burley there is meant to aleviate BITE. It also makes the taste duller. If you wish to avoid pernicious heat with M. BAREN's Virginia Flake, don't rub it out at all: just stuff it into the pipe whole; it will burn slower. This tobacco is a perfect tutorial on slow puffing and restrained smoldering; smoked that way, it is among the better light flakes.

If you want to taste this without the sweetener, or see what the sweetener adds to a blend of this sort, try FRIBOURG & TREYER's Cut Blended Plug.

9 people found this review helpful.

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

As an old friend of VA and VA-dominated flakes, I ordered a tin of this blend last time around.

The tin aroma is less bright than what I normally expect from a VA flake. As with MacBaren's Vanilla Flake, the tobacco has been pressed pretty tightly. The flake works pretty much the same folded or rubbed out: little volume, slow burn.

The taste is nice, as is the room note. It is nicely sweet, but for my taste lacks in VA characteristics; it comes over more as a classical Danish tobacco than what I am used to from the Richmond Navy Cut (formerly Richmond Medium Navy Cut) or Ilsted's Own Golden Flake.

Most of all, I believe this blend is lacking in strength, spiciness and the typical citrus and pepper notes I expect of a pure VA.

As a tobacco, Virginia Flake is not bad at all. It's a good smoke. But I do feel cheated by the name; it does not have what I expect of a VA flake. With a different name, I'd probably give it three stars.

7 people found this review helpful.

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

A very classically styled bright and red Virginia flake (although, knowing Mac Baren, I might suspect that there also is a slight touch of burley). It smells and tastes like an English flake with just a hint of sweet flavoring (honey, sugar...) to betray its Danish origin. Very "reference" virginia flake, IMHO.

It is predictable from start to finish: no surprises, neither of the unpleasant kind (it burns slow, cool, with no bitterness, sourness or tonguebite, very smooth) nor of the pleasant one (it is good, but without peaks of excellence). A mild tasting flake with a medium body, sweet, only slightly grassy and hayish. Similar to Capstan (but without its sour fruitiness) or Marlin Flake (but not as deliciously sweet), or Full Virginia Flake (but not as fragrant and complex). The problem, IMHO, lies in the fact that it's also rather undistinguished: it doesn't excel in any department, while undoubtedly providing a solid good smoke. With so many virginia flake alternatives, one has to go looking for nuances to tell the winners from the simply OK stuff. And IMHO the three tobaccos I compared it to above shine with more personality, more "juice", more complexity, more satisfaction. The difference is not huge, but it's there. Somewhat it can be comparable to some similar Fribourg & Treyer flakes: good, but not the best of its kind.

Anyway, far from being bad: if you stumble upon some tins at a good price, cellar them away because it is enjoyable and without specific faults other than not being the best of its class.

6 people found this review helpful.

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

Received a sample with a recent SmokingPipes order, probably wouldn't have noticed the blend otherwise.

Nice naturally high-dextrose Virginia, enhanced slightly with what appears to be a small amount of honey casing. Wonderful smell when you open the pouch but you immediately recognize it's not an artificial (aromatic) smell; rather, just a great Virginia tobacco smell. The casing adds virtually nothing to the sensory experience.

The moisture level was just right in my sample...not too dry and not too wet. The light-brown flakes (3/4" x 3 3/4") fall apart easily and really don't require rubbing out...just fold and stuff and you'll have a perfectly packed bowl with the correct draw. An absolute novice can look like an expert with this blend.

One charring light, tamp lightly, light again and that's the last match required until the bowl is 3/4 finished. Extremely easy to smoke this blend.

However, it'll quickly vette your smoking technique. Puff too aggressively, it'll bite and you'll have a hot pipe to boot. But smoked slowly, your pipe will remain cool and you'll fully enjoy all this mild Virginia has to offer.

I know conventional wisdom dictates using a smaller pipe for flake but this blend is perfect in a Dunhill Group 5 when I take my dogs out for an hour plus walk and want a long smoke. It stays lit and requires virtually no additional fiddling until almost finished.

I like this blend so much that I'm going to buy one of the 1lb boxes SmokingPipes has on their web site. And a second box to age for awhile. Guess that's why they sent me a sample, huh?

Highly recommended if you enjoy Virginias.

5 people found this review helpful.

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

This is a pretty decent blend. Mild yet flavorful, Virginia Flake is ideal as a simple, any time of day tobacco. A semi-citrus, semi-grassy Virginia flavor comes through strong from beginning to end, melding smoothly with a slightly honey-esque sweetness. Smoked as a flake, the flavors are darker, with a slightly more musty taste. Rubbed out, this flake really shines. Fresh out of a tin, it may have the tendency to bite. But taken slowly, this tobacco is one of the hidden treasures of the tobacco world...

4 people found this review helpful.

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

Beautifully prepared flakes stacked neatly in two rows. The tin aroma was of honey and a hint of vanilla with a perfect moisture content for removing and folding the flake for smoking. After lighting, a mildly sweet Virginia awaits you. In spite of the mildness, I was able to taste a flavored Virginia and what tasted like lemon and vanilla - a casing applied with a light touch, but this sweetness soon gives way to a very nice, albeit mild, Virginia. I experienced no bite and would say it burned very well - never hot, and with a spiciness that was very appealing. No real grassiness to this one either - a subdued brightness that I happen to favor in a Virginia. I could only just barely make out the Burley, but by mid bowl the nicotene presence will let you know it's there. There was no moisture and the flake burned to a nice light gray ash. Unless smoked too fast, it never was cigarette-like or ashy. A while after the tin is opened, the top note lessens considerably, but still adds a subtle balance to the overall flavor. For its genre, similar to Orlik's Golden Slice without the higher citrus tones of OGS. I like it much better than OGS.

As comparisons to Mac's Virginia No. 1 are inevitable, both are different enough to enjoy them as separate entities. Whereas No. 1 is honey forward, Virginia Flake is more vanilla forward (subtle, smoother and not as cloying vanilla as found in their Vanilla Cream). Mac Baren rates their flake stronger than their No. 1, and after consuming many bowls of each, I would have to agree, but not by much. One huge plus with the flake is a perfectly-sized tin for carrying in one's pocket, and I like the yellow-colored scheme of the tin as well. If you favor a Virginia in a flake form, Virginia Flake provides a satisfying experience. A bit more aromatic than No. 1. Like a good "B" movie that you don't mind watching more than once. Abbott and Costello made B movies. They happen to be my favorite comedy team with a 5 star rating, just like Virginia Flake!

4 people found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (302)
Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant

In what I believe is becoming my reconciliation with Mac Baren's blends, I gave a try to Virginia Flake. As with Golden Ambrosia and Virginia No. 1 I was rather surprised to taste a very gentle, mild, yet flavoursome tobacco. Certainly sweet, Virginia Flake is not at all cloying or syrupy. I find it a mild sweetness, almost natural, with a slight honey undertone that does not interfere with the tobacco taste.

Golden Virginias neatly pressed together to form beautiful, pliable flakes this tobacco represents a prime example of the Danish tobacco manufacture tradition (a la par with Stokkebye and Larsen's flakes). Of course, if you are used to Gawith, Dunhill or Mc Quaid's flakes, you may find Mac Barn's far too mild and flavourless. But if you take the time to puff in slowly and calmly you will be gratified by a very elegant and gentle tobacco. This is perhaps a mid morning or early afternoon smoke, that goes down well with tea or sherry. It has a very inviting aroma, with a nice aftertaste.

4 people found this review helpful.

Mesh Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mesh (50)
Mild Mild Mild Tolerable

This was the first flake tobacco I ever bought back in 2009 as a new pipe smoker, so you could say I have something of a sentimental attachment to it. Two or three tins of this and I was quite well hooked to the amazing world of pipe smoking. The tin design, the arrangement of the flakes, the tin note and the subtlety sweet VA notes in the smoke... there was enough there to capture my newbie imagination.

Sentimentality aside, however, now that I've sampled maybe twenty or so different Virginia flakes, this is objectively speaking not a very good example of its genre. There is a pleasant grassy taste in the first third of the bowl with some citrus notes, but it is too eager to bite and needs extremely slow sipping to burn down gently and not produce a harsh, cigarette-like taste after mid-bowl. Some reviewers have mentioned sweetness in the blend, something which I can't really find here any more.

I will always come back to this blend once every couple of years for nostalgia's sake, but there are several VA flakes I'd recommend before this one.

3 people found this review helpful.

Young Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Young Piper (300)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant

I feel this blend is very similar to Virginia #1 but with the topping toned down. Whereas Virginia #1 is the absolute opposite of what you would want to give a newbie, Vir Flake is much much more forgiving of careless technique and does not have the same ability to cause 3rd degree burns on a neophyte's tongue.. (and yes I was that kid, and yes I couldn't smoke for a week after that). The flake burns slower, cooler and the slight hassle of dealing with a Flake for a new smoker may seem daunting at first, the learning experience of smoking a Flake will broaden your horizons. Very similar to OGS to me as well without Perique.

3 people found this review helpful.

Alhaji Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alhaji (33)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This tobacco is a pleasant smoke - presents well in the tin in a nice layout. The flakes are easy to rub out and to load. Stays lit and burns to a fine white ash. No bite detected but could produce that effect if 'rush-smoked'. Taste is creamy and spicy from mid-bowl with a certain tanginess about it - sort of lemon grassy, like notes of Citrus. If no flavouring was added, as is generally believed, this could well be attributed to the 'Mac Baren way' of processing its Virginia(s).

3 people found this review helpful.

wmf Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wmf (14)
Medium Mild to Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

Found this one and only tin at Southern Cigar and immediately searched on TRs. Seems either this flake is loved or hated. was on sale and MAN am I glad I bought this gloriously rich flake. By following some of the 3 and 4 star reviewer's recommendations here for packing and smoking, I formulated a plan for my Bjarne. Popped the tin and the wife approved. Dried figs and faint tobacco smell, but very fresh at the same time (Awww Yeah). Liberated a flake from the tin and let it sit for 15 to 20 mins. I folded lengthwise and Z-bent the flake and somewhat shoved and arranged it in the bowl. Any bits of flake that came off during preparation were placed atop the tobacco in the bowl and somewhat thumb pressed. Felt a little tingle on charring light, but that's as far as I let it get. Took it easy and it was an instant classic. Figgy, Virginiaey, tobaccoey. Just a touch of natural saltiness feintly shows hear and there as the other flavors richly swirl on the tongue. Mid bowl was just as delicious with more tobacco coming thru, yet the fig was still keeping things interestingly delicious. My first bowl of this was incredible til I tried smoking all the dottle. Leave a little dottle, and if the need for more is desired, grab another briar. Thank you kindly Mac Baren.

Pipe Used: Bjarne squat brandy/pear 1/16 bend

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From: Southern Cigar Newnan GA

3 people found this review helpful.

Peter Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Peter Piper (41)
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

A nicely presented golden pressed flake in an understated rectangular tin. A slight vanilla aroma carries through into the smoke, which is at once yeasty with a touch of sweetness, sort of Virginia plus. The tobacco seems very ripe and mature, it is easy to light, gentle puffing is rewarded with a smooth and pleasant smoke which carries on to the bottom of the bowl, moreish. An excellent example of its type.

Highly recommended.

3 people found this review helpful.

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

As I continue to work my way (slowly) through the extensive Mac Baren's line, I held off on this one for as long as possible because I knew it was a flavored Virginia Flake and I was hesitant to try it. It is a very light tasting Virginia with a sweet and unusual top dressing that I liked. It was beautifully presented in a handsome tin, and the flake itself was marvelously put together. It stayed lit well (all Mac Baren's tobaccos seem to burn with no problem,) and burned cleanly with a superb aroma. If light and sweet is your go-to type of blend, I think you will really enjoy this.

3 people found this review helpful.

Big Train Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big Train (58)
Very Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

I am a Virginia flake smoker and I think that I have tried them all . This flake would not be my top choice or even near the top . Frankly , it is very grassy and sort of tasteless . It provides some first class tongue bite and is to be smoked only in moments of extreme need . That being said , it is a very useful product . I use it to mix with Samuel Gawith rain forest tobaccos to bring down the moisture level . Since it has little noticeable taste it does not change the excellent SG but it does provide enough dry kindling to light up and enjoy the flavor or great but way too moist tobacco . I always keep a good supply of this in my pipe room and couldn't smoke without it . Pretty yellow can too .

2 people found this review helpful.

WmZiggy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WmZiggy (76)
Mild to Medium Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant to Tolerable

Grassy, with little or no depth of development of other taste notes as the smoke progresses. Just an unpleasant grassy taste top to bottom. On my MacB world tour, this one is my biggest disappointment, especially given the beautiful presentation of this flake in the tin. This flake may make a good blending tobacco, but by itself it leaves much to be desired.

2 people found this review helpful.

Satc001 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Satc001 (66)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is a fine offering from MacBaren. This flake is easily rubbed out and packed into a pipe. A couple of matches and it burns easily with minimal relights. This tobacco gives the smoker a nice woodsy virginia taste with a slight tone of honey and maple from the Danish casing, as well as a full, buttery quality from the Burley present in this blend. If smoked at a reasonable pace it only provides the normal amount of tongue bite for a Virginia, but if puffed too fast it will nip. It has a friendly aroma that I find myself enjoying as well as others around me. This is NOT the same thing as Virginia No.1 and in my opinion it is superior to that blend (although I liked No. 1 a lot as well). My pipes will be seeing more of this blend and I whole heartedly recommend it for your enjoyment.

2 people found this review helpful.

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

All virginia flakes are appealing to me so i purchased a tin of this blend.once the tin cracks a sweet and spicy smell comes out(perhaps some sugar-pepper topping?).the bright flakes come at proper moisture,they are very manageable eithet to rub or to fold as they are.lights easy and several relights are needed.while smoking the flavours are clear,natural and simple.the virginias are mostly citrusy and grassy with some rare earth notes.the topping is in the backround till the end making the smoking experience sweeter and more peppery.burns cool and slow without chance ot tongue bite.the room note is discreet and the nicotine level low.burns to total ash with some moisture being created at the end of the all day smoke for conclusion this is a decent blend proper for every and all day smoking pleasure.

Age When Smoked: Rubbed and packed at once

1 person found this review helpful.

wintermute Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
wintermute (59)
Mild None Detected Mild Tolerable to Strong

I purchased this tin from a store a number of years ago and just got around to trying it. I am not the biggest Virginia fan, but I thought I would give this a go. When you pop open the tin there is a sweet tobacco smell. I do not mean candy, but a real sweet natural tobacco aroma like freshly cut grass. I tried rubbing this stuff out and also tried just stuffing the strands into the bowl. It takes a couple of charring lights and a serious lighting to get it really going. The moisture was perfect even after all this time. There is a good amount of smoke and the taste is of Summer. When you smoke it rubbed out the light taste is even more pronounced. If you smoke it with the stuffing method, you get more of the earthy sweetness. Either way the room aroma is essentially the same. The wife just complains that it smells like a really strong cigarette. The smoke is the same from first uff to the last. And the light flavor never seems to change. The ash is fine and knocks right out of the bowl. This reminds me of a hot Summer day. And it even goes really well with sweet tea. I am writing this in the middle of Winter so the contrast is even more noticeable.This little tin will provide more smokes than you might think. I have tried it in a small briar and a large cob and the performance is the same. The nicotine is average. This would also be good with an American style beer such as Budweiser. I am not sure I would buy it again with so many other tobaccos demanding my attention, but if you truly love plain Virginia and have not grabbed this tin yet, you really owe it to yourself. By the way, I am much more of a Burley smoker so take it for what it's worth.

Pipe Used: Small briar churchwarden and MM Country Gentleman

Age When Smoked: 4 or so years in the cellar

Purchased From: The Humidor in Tulsa, OK

Similar Blends: Escudo Carter Hall.

1 person found this review helpful.

Original Big Tex Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Original Big Tex (4)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is the first flake that I successfully smoked using the food and stuff method!

I found VF to be just a good, honest Virginia and nothing more. Smoke it cool and you get some nice citrus notes along with the pure tobacco flavor, get it hot and it gets a bit harsh.

Not too sweet, not too bitter, just right...

Pipe Used: Moonshine Stublin

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: P&C

1 person found this review helpful.

sirchud68 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sirchud68 (58)
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I've just purchased my first tin of M.B. Virginia Flake. As a Mac Barens lover, this blend has been on my "To Try" list for a few years now. These are my first impressions. I've been smoking some top notch Virginia flakes for awhile now so I wasn't blown away by this but that doesn't mean I think this doesn't have a place. Say, if you are a Virginia n°1 smoker and have been itching to move on to more straight up bright Virginia blends, this might be a next step. Or if you plan on moving away from other lightly topped aromatics and want to enter the world of flake tobaccos, this might be just the thing. This is an affordable smoke and is presented in a beautiful way. Tin moisture was just right, and I didn't encounter any bite though the key to enjoying this type of tobacco is slow, light sipping. So, as it stands, this seems like a great gate way flake. Though there are many other great first time bright Virginia flakes, I would recommend this if you had the chance to pick it up.

Pipe Used: Peterson's Kapet

Age When Smoked: 1 year

Purchased From: Milan Tobacconist Roanoke, Va.

Similar Blends: A lesser cousin to Dunhill Flake.

1 person found this review helpful.

codyp Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
codyp (65)
Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

The only Mac Baren from myself that I almost gave 3 stars.

It was a solid Virginia taste, that burned slowly, but sadly not cool.

I would definitely recommend this a beginner smoker to flakes because it easy to light and keep smoking. Plus the Virginia taste is definitely one a beginner smoker should come around to smoke for the first time.

Two stars.

Pipe Used: AKB Freehand Meerschaum, H.I.S Egg Bent

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

1 person found this review helpful.

Kraft1994 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Kraft1994 (54)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

This is an alright Virginia flake. Sweet, sugar hay flavor. However not immune to Mac Barens tongue bite cures. Overall, its an alright Virginia. Not even in the same ball park as Samual Gawith, Dunhill of any of the other legendary flakes. but, Its a good low cost starting place for beginner pipe smokers.

1 person found this review helpful.

DrDyson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrDyson (129)
Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a lightly-topped Virginia flake that comes well presented in a neat rectangular tin. The flakes rub out easily and it can be smoked straight out of the tin, but it needs to be sipped or it'll bite you. One of the claims made for it on the tin is that it's slow-burning. It isn't, though; not in my experience, anyway.

What I said in an earlier review of MacBaren's Navy Flake applies here, on the whole. It's all right, but rather ordinary, I found. Apart from a rather nice, though very subtle, honeyish note it doesn't have any distinguishing qualities to speak of. A decent all-day smoke, but not something that the connoisseur is going to want to linger over, I think. Somewhat recommended, but I wouldn't queue to buy it. Perhaps it needs a more sensitive palate than mine to appreciate the nuances.

1 person found this review helpful.

SmokeKing David Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeKing David (123)
Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

If you're looking for an ultra-light smoke, this may be for you. I disagree with the description of a "full" taste. It is definitely not full.

Despite this, I think it achieves what it likely tries to; namely a very light Virginia flake that has a light coating. For these reasons, I give it three stars even though I personally find it too light. I vastly prefer Virginia No 1 by the same blending house.

Govern Yourself Accordingly.

1 person found this review helpful.

Zose Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Zose (2)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I am a new pipesmoker, so take this all with a grain of salt. However, I am a long time cigar smoker and no stranger to good tobacco or full-bodied tobacco. This flake is not full-bodied, but it's certainly good.

The first third of the bowl was very mild indeed, but the flavor built nicely and by the halfway point was very enjoyable. Though Mac Baren says this is slightly flavored, I didn't notice it; I just tasted mild tobacco. The best thing I can compare this to is a high quality Dominican cigar with a Connecticut wrapper: mild, but worth your time. The second half of the bowl was especially good with nice natural sweetness and just a hint of nuttiness.

I had some trouble getting it lit, but only in the first third of the bowl; after that I think I relit once for the rest of the bowl. I also experienced a little gurgle. I'll chalk up both of those issues to user error. The gurgle might very well have been me slobbering down the pipe.

I experienced no tongue bite, even when I was getting a little greedy with the puffs.

I smoke outside, but I popped my head in and blew a few puffs at my wife. She said the room note was "like a cigar, but nicer."

All in all a nice simple mild smoke that, within its mild range, had plenty of very nice flavor.

1 person found this review helpful.

Doctor Max Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Doctor Max (23)
Mild Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Like the other Mac Baren flakes, Virginia flake comes packed in a very nice little metal tin, in a slightly eccentric yellow this time. The flakes are wrapped in a nice golden coloured wrapper. Undoing this reveals a very nice, hay- to golden brown neatly cut densly packed stack of flakes of perfect size to roll and stuff in a corn cob. Tin aroma is a light, sweet grassy hayey smell with decided lemon peel notes. Smoking reveals a very sweet flavour with notes of hay and lemon, and when correctly treated and allowed to burn cool, almost of lemonade. Room note is surprisingly smokey and dry, with notes of oak, and not altogether easy to accept by non- smokers in the room. While this is a fairly mild tobacco, calling it cigarette tobacco is more than unfair. While it can get a bit ashy and harsh when smoked too hot, as well as towards the end of the bowl, the quality of this tobacco should be undisputed. Careful smoking does bring out very nice, unique bright and summery flavours, but as with many Mac Baren offerings, you just wish that they were more present. A recommended hot weather tobacco.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipe4ever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe4ever (204)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

This is my favorite Virginia Flake and a regular is my rotation.

When I want something a little bit aromatic, a little bit creamy and sweet with true Virginia flavor, but not too heavy Aromatic or too complex Virginia flavor, then only Mac Baren Virginia Flake will do.

This need Definitely some drying time then fold it and pack it as it is, with preference in a horn shape pipe and with the "air pocket" packing method, the flavor is close to Mac Baren Navy Flake, the burley provides the "creamy" body and reduces bite, the taste is sweetm mild creamy and fruity, the sweetness comes from the natural sweet Virginia leaf rather than from added sweetener.

This is not the same Virginia as with Virginia No1, Virginia Flake is a bit sweeter with more body and without the hay flavor of VA #1

Bad blend Good blend = Excellent blend * Exceptional blend

1 person found this review helpful.

Lbarraa Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lbarraa (29)
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A great tobacco, with the taste of Navy Flake and the flavor of Virginia nº1. This tobacco is very easy to burn, with out tongue bite, the just nicotine and the rigth flavor. Great presentation. Is ideal for the outdoor, and a medium size pipe. One of my favorites.

1 person found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1643)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

Mac Baren - Virginia Flake.

Note: a review I did a few years back but disagreed with, so decided to re-post.

Because this is now supplied in a pouch I was unsure whether the flakes would be loose or not, but the pouch contains a plastic case in which the tobacco sits. Underneath the foil seal resides two rows of light brown, perfectly hydrated, thin, flakes. I like a flake to be fully rubbed and the task is very easy with this: they crumble as they're picked out.

Now, the smoke: it's good, but not the best straight Va I've had. The Virginia tastes fresh, sharp, and a little zesty. I'm unsure as to the variety of topping used, but I note an added sweetness and very subtle herby quality. The burn from V.F. is reliable, but can become too warm if chugged; this reduces the rating a little.

Nicotine: mild to medium. Room-note: very pleasant.

Virginia Flake? Because of the heat it misses out on four stars, but it still warrants three:


Pipe Used: Peterson Clontarf XL11

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: G.Q. Tobaccos

Nobody has rated this review yet.

renwardhoop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
renwardhoop (105)
Medium to Strong None Detected Overwhelming Pleasant

Now then. This is a nasty little rascal of a blend.

It looks so cute in it's tiny little yellow tin. And it smells just like a good virginia flake should smell, with an economical oblong of tightly stacked brown, unassuming flake.

But that's what it wants you to think.

It's a little nasty sleeper that will come to haunt your worst nightmares. Oh sure, the flake is nicely moist and breaks up, just as a good flake should. Packed lightly and ready for a nice virginia smoke just like the old boys of yore. You know, the ones you remember as a kid, thinking 'nice smell bit I'll stay on cigarettes'.

You char-light, take a puff and ye gods ! What a narsty surprise awaits your poor old toungue. It's an assault and battery on your mouth. It's brutal death metal only orally induced.

It'll leave your taste buds in pieces and your tongue cut into shreds. You smoke this one at your peril. It took days and countless bowls of Stanwell aromatics and DT's Choo Choo train to help heal the evil that this little devil inflicted on me. Shaking hands dump the contents into the ashtray and you half expect your best glass (and expensive) pipe-ashtray to start melting from the poisons contained therein.

And yet the rest of it sits there, in it's smart little tin, smugly laughing back at you for being a big jessie. None but the bravest of smokers should attempt this blend, even if it did only cost 6.80 euros from Spain. I'll be having words with you, my dear son.

Yes, this is the assassin of all virginia flakes and only the noblest and gentlest of pipe smokers will make friends with this one.

I'm off to hug myself better with Capstan's Blue Flake, also made by Macbites. I mean MacBaren's.

It's the back of the cellar for you my lad, under strict guard.

Pipe Used: Just the one.

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: By my Son from Spain.

Similar Blends: A smack in the mouth..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SamH Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SamH (31)
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

This is nice, but for me seemed a little light and dry after St Bruno and Full Virginia (SG) Flake. Could be a good option for many though.

Pipe Used: Various billiards

Age When Smoked: From tin, straight from shop.

Purchased From: Now defunct Lewes tobacconist.

Similar Blends: Oddly I don't think much..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Appalachian Scholar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Appalachian Scholar (34)
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

I like this much better than Virginia Number 1. This blend gets better the more it dries out and is very mellow. Room aroma is about the same.

Pipe Used: Brewster Billiard

Age When Smoked: New

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Ib Fagerlund PRDK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ib Fagerlund PRDK (3)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Absolutely my favorite among the standard Mac B. blends. This is an honest VA flake in the medium range. Only very lightly flavored to enhance the natural VA notes. By no means a complex experience, but a straight forward, honest tobacco. Notes of fresh bright VA with a little sweetness. No bite and a mellow smoke. A basic medium strength VA flake to be smoked all day long.

Pipe Used: Stanwell no. 29

Age When Smoked: New

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Have a good smoke with this blend, but I wonder, when I smoke this blend, my pipe is more hot than the usually. I smoke it very slow and draw quite slow even sometimes I take a hard draw to get a great smoke. I think the problem was on my pipe, but for the 2nd time, with other pipe, I have a same problem, is more hot and it cause moisten more faster then the usually.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

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

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bence Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bence (34)
Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant

I like it better than VA no1., less flavoring, more natural taste.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Max1a Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Max1a (38)
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Just a straight up Virginia flake. Very grassy, very one dimensional. I suppose that a person could want to smoke this alone, but it is actually a very good blender and makes a fantastic base for the addition of some Red Virginia, Lat, and perique. 2 stars straight, 3 as a blender tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

grumpyoldprofessor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
grumpyoldprofessor (11)
Mild Mild Mild Tolerable

I bought my Virginia Flake in the 1lb offering. The presentation of this flake is down right beautiful. It's a one pound hunk of long thinly sliced Virginia right off the ol' chopping block! It has such a sweet grassy smell to it that transfers to the taste nicely. As I said the flakes are thin and quite long as well. At first I thought I would need to cut one in half to smoke in my favorite flake pipe, but due to the thin slice one flake folded in half and gently twisted fit right in. It's very pliable and a good moisture level as well. The charring light got things going nicely and I tamped down the tobacco and lit again and didn't have to mess with after that. It does light easily which is a major plus with any flake. As far as taste goes it does have a nice light taste and mild strength. It's got the typical grassy, hay like, taste and none of the cigarette taste normally associated with VA's. I think it's a good choice for a nice light, sweet and mild VA available in bulk.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Newbie2010 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Newbie2010 (18)
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

It is what it is. It has very straightforward elements of a Virginia, but I detect hints of the burley and cavendish MB uses in Navy Flake. It does remind me of a RYO cigarette tobacco and the room note is reminiscent of those Stokkyebye RYO baccys I no longer partake. It is no SG Full Virginia Flake, which I tried first, but it's a decent smoke. I would recommend it to someone who has yet to venture into Virginia flakes. I actually took a flake and mixed it with Captain Black White as a last ditch effort to keep from throwing the CB away. It's not bad. Tones that sickeningly sweet CB down nicely.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

One may think to a Mixture (or Navy) Flake without any Burley and Cavendish. You know it's a Mac Baren from the very first.

We are talking of something not so natural, the honey factor is quite evident, and maybe a touch of lemon and vanilla. The favouring is applied with light hand, but enough to cover the sharp edges usually associated with Va's. That's why VF is never shining any hayish or fruity notes. But also nothing wrong.

VF is better in medium larger bowls, stuff easily both with the fold & plug method or rubbed out, and burns evenly, cool and unbiting. It doesn't suffer any deterioration by several relight, and good with DGT. The strength never exceeds the mild-to-medium notch.

It's the first tobacco leaving me a so sceptical... difficult to tell if it's good or not. Sometimes it gives me some very nice experience, others I'm just bored. Virginia no. 1 absolutely wins the match in the McB family. I'm simply unable to compare it with other flakes of other brands.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Giaach Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Giaach (3)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Upon opening the tin I get the smells of grasses,hay, raisins, and possibly chocolate. Unlike the interesting smells in the tin the smoking of this tobacco is nothing special. It has the same tastes all the way through, mainly of hays and woody with a slight hint of fruit once in a while. I prefer a stronger Virginia like Samuel Gawiths Full Virginia. All in all and okay tobacco but nothing amazing.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Duke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Duke (41)
Mild Medium Mild to Medium Unnoticeable

Virginia Flake is Virginian and a touch of Burley. Why? I?ve been looking for a bright tasting Virginian to replace Dunhill?s Lt. Flake and, so, yet another ho hum tobacco. Light Flake had a topping or casing that never left a ghost, this does. It is of great quality, but why the Burley?. I taste the Burley. Its sweet smoke didn?t bite. I don?t need being saved by the bite-reducing Burley.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dr.sadik Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dr.sadik (100)
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

this blend goes side by side with the erinmore flake but its a lighter version,,nicely burned easy on the mouth. burns in to white ash, straight virginia with no misleading flavors to wounder about. an all day smoke blend if you dont really care for people complements (aroma wise).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pseudo Nim Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pseudo Nim (110)
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Unnoticeable

Update May 19 2008 I have a couple of tins of this with more than a year on them and have just cracked one open, no sign of sugar crystals, no darkening of flake. Age seems to do nothing for this and my remaining tin will be kept for an absolute emergency, I can only hope I never have to use it. Even two stars feels a bit genorous.

Update August 26 2008 Have to drop this one down a star as I'm now finding it a little too "tangy" for my liking, although I will continue to smoke it from time to time, certainly not with the same voracity as I have in the past, having discovered Old Gowrie. Were I once again, to find myself out of tobacco and this the only decent offering available, of course I would buy it, but when my stock depletes, I will not be in a hurry to make sure there are tins on hand, there are just too many superior flakes out there.

I was told I would not like Mac's Virginia Flake, by the shopkeeper, that it was too mild and had no taste other than that of just pure tobacco, I took a tin home anyway as the other offerings that were available ranged from poor to don't even think about it. As I was already familiar with Mac Baren's Vanilla Flake and Navy cut Flake, and not overly impressed with either, I expected pretty much the same, pocket size tin and tobacco in foil wrap. For my liking, ALL Mac Baren's are a little on the dry side, and Virginia Flake did not dissapoint, on rubbing out the first slice, a habit of mine, slice in left palm, folded in half lengthwise, then end to end before rubbing with the thumb, I had to be careful not to end up with a handful of sawdust. One match, puff SLOWLY, no tongue bite, and careful not to let the pipe get to warm, I get a taste of lemon, just a hint, not unpleasant, nice suprise, a good honest Virginia Flake, pure tobacco taste with a hint of lemon. Burn is nice and even down to the bottom of the bowl, leaving a grey ash. I quickly decided I liked this one and several tins later my opinion has not changed. A good all day smoke until evening when I prefer something different. Were it not for the potential tongue bite from puffing to quickly, I would reccomend this to a novice. Wife Rating ? I have almost no sense of smell, but I am reliably told that it's OK, and the dog just eye's me warily, she knows only to well some of the concoctions I have been known to stuff in a briar and set fire to. All in all, four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I don't really miss cigarettes that much.

Look for HH Mature Virginia instead if it has to be Mac Baren - it's not flake, right, but at least it's very decent Virginia and not Marlboro Lights...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I drove to the vets to pick up the dogs, smoking Mac Barens Virginia flake and thinking about cornfields casing my boyhood in green shucks and yellow silk, railroad tracks under my bike wheels a jack of diamonds in the spokes, baseball mitt around the spoiler.

Another season turns, Hot coffee and wet gloves, the bite of the morning and thick boots, dark til noon then dark again, blue light coming off the snow, cold as blue, a blue knuckle the blue of the settling Swedes eyes.

Dylan Thomas had his heron priested shores, James Joyce his emerald Island, I had corn fields and tundra and sometimes at night the big sky would let loose a rock or two and light up the elms, the doomed elms with rot in their sap.

I think to write to a pipe forum; Mac Barens Virginia flake is a nostalgic blend; first notes of corn fields and bike grease, mitt leather and pick up games or pickle in a vacant lot, by mid bowl hints of coffee and ice and blue, with a strong finish aged forty years, a girl with a pony tail and dripping wax down a wine bottle. I recommend this blend to infirms with memory loss, journalists who feel they?ve sacrificed some heart for their craft and old men with the time to daydream and walk through ghost fields green and golden or blue and white. I know it?s a catalyst and not the thing itself; tobacco doesn?t make you sweet and sticky, people do, unemployment does, the holidays, death, love and other things we?ve given names to reference but have no inkling of their nature.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I enjoy many of Mac Baren`s products, Scottish Mixture and Navy Flake in particular. Some, like Vanilla Flake and Stockton, do not please in the same way. Virginia Flake is beautifully crafted, a pleasure to handle and carry about, and when one is sated with heavier flavours a delightful change of pace. The added flavouring is not obtrusive and does not mask the mild taste of the tobacco. This is no substitute for Light Flake or Long Flake or Old Gowrie, let alone the cooked virginias. But when one is in the mood for a light cool consomme rather than a French onion soup, so to speak, this meets the requirement.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tavancleave Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tavancleave (8)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

Virginia Flake looks great when you first open the tin. However, after smoking my first bowlful I never want to open the tin again. This tobacco seems to have a lot of potential but smokes incredibly hot and steamy. I am not going to keep this blend around.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Spike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spike (296)
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

If you enjoy Virginia Flakes and are o.k. with some added flavoring this is quite enjoyable. A bit too much flavor and scent when first opened and the first few puffs were too much for my tastes. It did settle into a nice smoke after about the first one quarter of the bowl. A good first smoke of the day for the V.F. fan. Similar qualties as McB's Navy Flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Steerpike Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Steerpike (60)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Very nicely made VA flake, attractively presented, it really looks the part in the tin.

Its seems to be at the right moisture content, and rubs with ease, no trouble to pack it evenly. Lights quick, and burns long, slow and even, with little need for relights unless smoked slow. But here's the problem, you have to smoke it really slow or it gets toasty hot and bites. More than most other pure Virginia smokes I've tried. This defect aside, its a pleasant enough mild tobacco, seems a bit too mild at first, but smoked in a big pipe the taste (and strength) will develop toward the end. The taste of the leaf is somewahat dulled by the flavourings, its not fruity, more toasty flavours appear, with a hint of honey. Quite sweet. Is there a hint of vanilla in here? I can smell it in the tin, seems to enhance the sweetness. The room note is mild, sweet, perhaps a little dull, but not unleasant. Overall, its alright, there are other VA flakes I prefer though. I have an unopened tin stashed away, hopefully a few years in hiding might improve it...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pagercat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pagercat (40)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Overview: A very-lightly cased mild VA flake that rubs, burns and tastes very clean and consistent.

Tin appearance, aroma, feel: All of Mac Baren's flakes are sealed in a neat little tin and wrapped four-fold in some gorgeous thick gold paper with the words "Mac Baren Flake" embossed on the main fold. Unfolding the gold flaps will reveal perfect twin sets of rectangular flakes of well-blended and beautifully grained Virginia tobacco. Upon closer inspection, one can easily see the various type of Virginia leaves used in this blend. There are mostly matured browns with strands of red and a few hints of black lined across the sheets with zesty yellow appearing prominently throughout. The flakes are perfectly smooth and uniform. The thickness is just enough to keep the flake intact when removed from the tin yet very easily rubbed out, thereby giving one the opportunity to experiment with various degrees of burn rate and quality. The scent is present but far from overwhelming as it gives one the impression of freshly mowed grass and a sweet summer breeze.

The Smoke: Upon initial lighting the first tastes are those of sweetness and clean tobacco. One must exercise some caution and restraint on the initial light as the blend tends to heat up very quickly and can bite with attitude. After the tamp and relight the bowl burns slow and even. The taste is consistent all the way through with a mild finish. Relights are a necessary evil as it tends to go out as easily as it overheats. I would not recommend this blend to a beginning smoker because of this trait, preferably suggesting Mac Baren's ?Virginia No. 1? blend instead.

Summary: Virginia Flake leaves a perfect fluffy white ash in the bowl with almost no dottle at all. While mildly sweetened the dominant taste is the blend of pure tobacco. While it is good for a change of pace, there isn't much to it to hold one's interest. Unlike many premium blends that change flavors and characteristics throughout the bowl, Virginia Flake remains as uniform in taste as it is in appearance. It's a good mild smoke but nothing more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I like this tobacco, but when you factor in the cost there are better VA flakes out there for the same or less money. It's not a complex VA like something from the U.K. There is a sweetness but it appears to be more from a dressing or casing rather than the VA itself. The taste is kind of a cross between MacBaren VA #1 and their Navy Flake. It has some slight robustness that reminds me a little of the Navy Flake, but the overall taste is really more similar to the VA #1. I much prefer the Navy Flake to the VA Flake, and feel that if you want to smoke a MacBaren VA tobacco in appreciable quantities you would be better off with the VA #1 due to cost and taste considerations. Still, this is different than the VA #1 and since I smoke a wide variety of tobaccos I do occasionally purchase a tin of this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jaybee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jaybee (77)
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A very attractive flake with a mild honey-like flavoring. This takes to the match well and there's no problem keeping it lit. Really just a pure virginia version of Navy Flake....just too light for my tastes....

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jakob Kiilerich Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jakob Kiilerich (120)
Extremely Mild Strong Very Mild Pleasant

During the Renaissance Period, no one would dream of taking a bath more than one time a year - at max! Instead people sprayed on litres upon litres of sweet perfumes to hide their natural body odour.

Where's the tobacco in this blend i ask? Are MacBaren trying to hide something here? Bad quality VA leaf perhaps?

The flavouring is very pervasive and the nicotine level is extremely low. If you puff on this a little to hard, you will get punished. But it burns well, even the most unexperienced of novices should be able to keep this one lit, and the presentation is of course (as always with MacBaren) very beautiful.

I think MacBaren is trying to imitate the traditional English "soap-flavouring" as seen in Light Flake and others. They do not succeed at all. I agree with the esteemed Pipestud; it's bland, it's hot, it has no guts. My advice: Try Navy Flake from MacBaren instead, if you like this brand.

Jakob Kiilerich, Denmark

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (165)
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I decided to venture more into the MB line, and since I like virginia flakes, even some scented ones, I gave this a full tin go after looking at the other reviews, but with caution.

P&T magazine gave MB's Navy Flake a nod over this one, due to the extra flavoring here, but Navy Flake is also scented (but less so than VF). Indeed Navy Flake is more of an all day smoke, due to the just slightly sweet taste and coolness from the burley. But if you have a sweeter tooth, Virginia Flake has the advantage. Navy Flake, for all its goodness, is bland by comparison.

Virginia Flake does smoke somewhat cool if and only if you pack the unrubbed flake firmly. (You can sense its willing to be hot and bite if you rubbed it out fully or packed it too loose.) But smoked slowly it does not bite or get too hot.

It starts out quite sweet, with a nearly dense honey taste aided by the bright virginia sugariness. The sweetness lightens a bit duirng the bottom 2/3's of the smoke. I found it to be a somewhat wet smoke, using my pipe cleaner about three times. (I used a medium, straight Von Eryck pipe, but an early model that a cleaner would not run straight through, so a better pipe may help in the future. Still, tasty.) It's more of an occasional, small hit of the wet honey taste rather than a steady stream of aromatic stuff. I could still taste a slight tang from the bright virginias used, so the underlying tobacco is of high quality.

The taste was somewhat medium rich to me, and that's why I stuck with it. Other honeydew flakes used for comparison include G&H Glengarry (lighter, more natural, and smoother), Erinmore (richer, fuller), CAO's Vanilla flake (similar but cooler), and Solani's Virginia Flake (fuller and dryer) or Long Golden Flake (very cool, round, dry and tasty). I might try MB's Virginia Flake again, and in different style pipes, due to the interesting richness that develops.

Reservedly recommended to bright flake fanciers and light aromatic buffs who want to venture into flakes, but with cool heads.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I'm not sure how long this blend has been available in the US market, but I'm glad I found it while on the net. The perfectly prepared, flat, rectangular, pressed flakes of golden to dark brown VAs are @ an ideal moisture content and neatly stacked in the tin. MacBaren certainly knows how to effectively present and market their products. I didn't rub out the flakes resulting in a very slow but even burn rate and a cool smoke in various bowl sizes. Although I couldn't pinpoint the casing, it seemed typical of the Danish, honey additives and resulted in a room aroma that was viewed by others as much improved compared to some of my McClelland regular VAs and VAs/Periques. It's perhaps a nice compromise when in company. The sweet taste and aftertaste were also enjoyable but rather one dimensional. I found this considerably sweeter than MacBaren's Navy Flake which has more of a Burley influence. Another winner from MacBaren.

Nobody has rated this review yet.