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This blend is a style of English Virginia that has seldom been seen in the United States. A sweet, exceptionally soft, fully rubbed matured cake.

BrandMcClelland
Blended ByMcClelland Tobacco Company
Manufactured ByMcClelland Tobacco Company
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
ContentsVirginia
FlavoringNone
CutReady Rubbed
PackagingBulk
CountryUS
ProductionNo longer in production
Where to Buy SmokingPipes.com
PipesAndCigars.com
Product Image
Strength
Mild to Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Mild to Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 16 Users

3.4
182 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
88
3 star:
73
2 star:
18
1 star:
3
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The "ketchup" smell of the tobacco mildly translates to the taste, though it disappears after a short time. It has a deep, very ripe rich explosion of tangy dark fruit red Virginia with a light spice note, and a little earth. I would not classify this as a complex smoke by any means, and it's not designed to be that either. Has a mild nic-hit. Works well as a mixer or as a straight smoke, and can be an all day companion. A fairly moist product in the tin or in bulk, some people prefer to dry it some, which won't hurt much. Some dry it out completely, which I do not recommend that as it will lose some of its inherent richness, although you would lose less than you would if you did that to other blends. Burns slow, cool, clean and smooth with a very consistent flavor that never weakens. Won't bite no matter how fast you puff. It will leave a little moisture in the bowl, but no dottle unless you are a wet smoker. Needs a few relights as it does burn a little wet. Has a very pleasantly lingering after taste. The room note is sweet.

34 people found this review helpful.

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

This is quite a tasty if monodimensional smoke. As someone who normally smokes flakes and broken flakes, this is a great tobacco to burn in a new pipe. Loads easily and burns very well, if not quite as well as a flake (once you get 'em going!). This also dries out nicely and I found one reviewer's claim of problems there and that this included humectants to be in direct opposition to my own experiences. But I've read enough of his other reviews to believe that he arrives at his conclusions honestly, so I guess it's simply a matter of a difference in opinion. No problem there!

I suspected this might make a good blending tobacco when I first smoked it and I'm tickled to see so many reviewers doing just that. I really like one reviewers idea of this Red Cake, the McClelland Stoved VA and some Perique - sounds like something I oughtta try! By itself this blend is very nice and very smokable, but it's not (for me) one of McClellands best blends. But getting to the top of that mountain would be quite a feat, as McClellands has at least a dozen blends that I find 4 star. Try this if you like straight virginia or if you're an aromatic smoker wondering what all the straight VA hubbub is about. This will start you on your journey.

26 people found this review helpful.

SeoulSister Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SeoulSister (37)
★★★★
Mild Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I only smoke English blends and Lakeland scented flakes so when I decided I wanted to expand my horizons, my husband suggested starting with 5100 Red Cake. The tobacco has the ketchup smell that everyone talks about but it didn’t put me off. I dried it for a while before packing it. After lighting it, I didn’t get any of the ketchup smell in the taste. I just get a sweet, slightly spicy taste with a very, very slight grassy note. As I got further through each bowl, the sweetness from the Virginia grows and leaves a nice sweet, stickiness on my lips! It never burns hot and there is no bite. I was very pleasantly surprised by this mild to medium blend and I found it very pleasant to smoke! Even though this is not a typical smoke for me, it has made me want to try other straight Virginia blends.

Age When Smoked: 5 years old

11 people found this review helpful.

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

I wouldn?t be content if I didn?t have a few Bell jars of McClelland 5100 Red Cake snugly aging down in the dark, cool pipeweed corner of the basement. As an inexpensive bulk, with a little aging on it, 5100 compares favorably to Rattray?s Hal O? the Wynd.

The aroma of 5100 out of the Bell jar and in the room is delightful. Smoked properly, it delivers a hearty mouthful of taste with no bite. The first third or so of the bowl is mild and sweet. Later the smoke becomes heavier, retains sweetness and becomes a tad harsher, but not at all unpleasant. 5100 leaves a sweet taste in the pipe bowl, allowing the piper the option of a taste treat by following with an occasional bowl of a Latakia mixture.

That said, 5100 has a few idiosyncracies of which new and seasoned puffers should be mindful.

As a rubbed out flake, 5100 visually appears as an attractive heap of small bits of high quality leaf, ranging from gold to dark brown. It also has a humectant that retains moisture even after several years of aging. To me, this is fair warning of a tobacco that requires a light hand in packing, several matches to get burning properly and vigilance to keep burning. I can?t recall ever smoking a bowl of 5100 through to the bottom without relight.

For me, getting optimum taste from 5100 requires 15 minute smokes, allowing the smolder to expire, light tamping, putting the pipe aside to cool for 10 minutes, and then repeating. A small price to pay, I?d say, for a great and, in comparison, inexpensive pipeweed.

Using the uneducated thumb method to cram as much 5100 into the bowl as possible, lighting up with one of those awful pipe torches, then stubbornly huffing when the smolder begins to expire, will inevitably lead to gurgles and wrong-headed exclamations about Virginia?s tendency to nip or worse.

But with a skillful touch and a little patience, such unpleasantness is easily avoided and the smoker will count himself fortunate and wise to have put away an ample store of this excellent and affordable Virginia.

10 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The reason why McClelland IMO has created the gold standard with Red Cake is because of its duel usage potential. 5100 Red Cake is a mild, red Virginia that smokes well enough on its own, but really rings the bell as a great component tobacco for other blends. My stash is from 2009 and at five years old, it is quite sweet, very mild in strength and offers a little bit of tang. It is also forgiving for “puffers” as it doesn’t bite. I generally don’t gravitate toward the McClelland Virginias I have tried because I prefer a little more strength than the McClellands I have smoked. Red Cake is no exception to this for me as it is mild and not very complex. But, boy it is a tasty tobacco all the same and it ages wonderfully. Personally, for the reasons mentioned, it’s a three star tobacco for me, but I can easily see this being a favorite for many looking for a mild straight red Virginia.

Age When Smoked: 5 years

Purchased From: pipesandcigars.com

9 people found this review helpful.

oldcodger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
oldcodger (71)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I give Bulk No. 5100 a four star rating because it is the bulk tobacco that I smoke most, McClelland is justly famed for their Virginias, and I am fond of a number of their tinned blends, in particular No. 22, No. 24, No. 25, and No. 27 from the Matured Virginia series. I like 5100 even better, and even though I meander through many offerings in the bulk department of McClelland and many other brands, I smoke 5100 more than any other bulk offering.

This is a fully rubbed out small ribbon. Identified as a cake, at some point in its preparation, probably in the fermentation process, it was pressed into a block and then later put into its rubbed out form. It has some of the acetic "ketchup" smell that all McClelland Virginias manifest, although this is lighter than most of its siblings. The "ketchup" odor does not bother me, although it is apparent in the pouch.

As a red Virginia, this tobacco has considerable natural sweetness. I do not detect an additional sweetening element.

The tobacco lights well, not as easily as some which share its smallish cut, but nevertheless without difficulty. I have to trouble in keeping it lit.

The room note is of a pleasant natural tobacco variety. It will not elecit the compliments of non smokers that a sweet aromatic may, but neither will it engender complaints.

The nicotine level is on the low side. Virginias have the reputation for being bite prone, but I find no need for extraordinary care in the puffing technique to protect my tongue when smoking 5100.

I personally do not jar bulk tobaccos for long time storage. Many of those who do laud 5100 as a good candidate for long term aging. McClelland bulks use tobaccos with less maturity than those in the tinned blends, and thus it seems reasonable that aging will improve this offering.

Yes, 5100 is monochromatic. But its taste, on the light side of medium, wears very well. My own habit of varying my tobacco from smoke to smoke may be partially the cause, but when I return to it from whatever is in my current rotation (I normally have five tins, pouches, or baggies open) I find it to be a treasured friend. Likewise, when smoking large bowled pipe, I do not find this a smoke which grows dull before the end. In the case of 5100, the end is a dry light grey powder.

My current pipe collection numbers 51, including two Dunhills. The brace of Dunhills are not what I consider my best two, but they handle Virginias better than any others in my rotation.

7 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1825)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

I find McClelland's 5100 to be very similar to McCranie's Red Ribbon. (Both are tinned by McClelland). This tobacco smelled delightfully Virginia sweet in the pouch. And the flavor is wonderful and naturally sweet, just a really remarkable very delicate Virginia flavor. I can see where this straight Virginia would be a wonderful end of the day smoke if your palate has been overloaded. It could be a good first pipe of the day smoke too due to its lightness. And finally, it is a great blending tobacco and marries well with blends that you like but think may need more sweet Virginia to settle the other components. As for me, I love mixing 5100 with straight Burley blends to give me the sweetness I so much enjoy while still getting the strength from each puff that Burley tobacco can so often provide. No matter how you smoke 5100, it will be palate pleasing, I assure you!

6 people found this review helpful.

Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Appearance: Medium to dark red ribbon. The ribbons are quite uniform in length and width (about average). The tobacco was moister than I like it, but might be perfect for many. I happen to like the dryness of Cornell and Diehl blends.

Aroma: Rich sweet aroma with only the merest trace of the ?vinegar? smell that seems to pervade McClelland reviews. The trace dissipated in a short time.

Packing: No problem in any size or shape bowl. Easy to get a nice, springy surface.

Lighting: Nothing unusual in the lighting, neither oo easy nor too difficult.

Initial flavor: Smooth, refined and rich. Not a subtle virginia at all. Makes me realize why I like blends with Red Va. Has a full range of flavor components, from the high notes to the low (but not very low).

Mid-bowl: Continues to charm the palate with layers of flavor, when smoked slowly. With cellaring, this might rival Rattray?s Hal O? the Wynd for flavor.

Finish: No significant change at the bottom of the bowl. Leaves a dry ash in a clean pipe.

Summary: Might be a little too strong for an all day smoke for many, but YMMV. An excellent choice for fans of deeper Virginias. An amazingly good tobacco for the price. I plan to cellar a few pounds for the future, and might try using it as a blending base.

6 people found this review helpful.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (492)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Medium Tolerable

This blend delivered all I expected of it. Straight Red Virginia in a ribbon cut. The tin note of this is the ketchup type aroma one would expect in a McClelland Virginia. The taste is similar to other McClelland Vas as well, but this one is a little earthier than I expected.

I did mix it with some other blends and had some great results, but on its own, this is incredibly monotone and can get boring in a large bowl. I don't really think the point of this blend is to smoke it straight even though many do. It is good quality leaf and it has many uses.

5 people found this review helpful.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (729)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

I should have paid more attention to the part of the description that reads "exceptionally soft". It is just that. While the flavor is that of fine Virginias, it's just too mild for me. The body is also a bit too mild to satisfy. It's clear that this cake was not baked for me. Having said that, if you prefer mild bodied tobaccos with mild flavor, you will probably really like this.

Mild in body and flavor. Burns nicely.

Pipe Used: MM Mark Twain

Age When Smoked: fresh bulk

Purchased From: smokingpipes.com

5 people found this review helpful.

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

The smoke was mellow, medium/mild with a good tobacco flavor. It struck me as a Anniversary Kake without the perique, and it was a very good smoke. There was a mild sweetness that transitioned to a slightly more sour/tart taste as the bowl progressed. This blend grew on me, and I found I liked more and more, as I smoked my way through the 4 oz. I suspect the blend benefits from a dedicated pipe, and this may have explained the liking it more and more. I did not get a lot of complexity or top notes, but this is a solid smoke that is not exotic.

This is my first taste of a McC tobacco and so my first review of one. Just for the record, I did not mention the "K" word.

5 people found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (302)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Tolerable

I am not a fan of McClelland´s processing and blending techniques. My first experience, Deep Hollow, was rather frustrating. I mean, who ever thought of concocting a Vanilla and Vinegar blend? Subsequent samples (Brindle Flake, Old London Pebble Cut and B. Hartwell?s Reserve Blend), though better in taste and depth, still had that unexplainable acidic-BBQ tang which, unlike some of the above reviewers, I find it erodes the essential flavours and resins of natural pipe tobacco. So it was with some trepidation that I opened the 3 Oz pouch of 5100 Red Cake that I received a couple of months ago. What a surprise! There is a certain vinegary note in the pouch that somehow lingers in the initial taste?But then, after a few puffs, the acerbic taste dissipates and gives way to a very nice and well behaved Virginia! Following the sensible advise from my fellow reviewers, I proceeded with extra caution in order to avoid potential tongue bite. But again to my surprise, I encountered none. The natural flavours and sweetness of matured red Virginias (in a certain way reminiscent of McConnell?s) were all there, very subtle and delicate. Though visually not a very attractive tobacco, the crimp short ribbon cut makes it very simple to pack. It has a wonderfully slow burning rate (great for DGT), it smokes rather cool and the room aroma is acceptable.

Personally, I still prefer other Virginias (most recently Stokkebye's Navy Flake--with Perique-- and Curly Cut--straight Va). But this one undoubtedly is a very nice and, shall we say, invigorating experience, highly recommended to any Virginia lover.

5 people found this review helpful.

Young Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Young Piper (300)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

5100 is an interesting animal, being an all red Virginia I had read it would age very nicely so ten years ago I ordered a pound and a half from Dave at Bufflehead tobacco, I smoked the 8 ozs and canned the pound. I had intended to age the pound for a couple of years and forgot about it so here I am with a decade old pound of 5100, and you know what? I much prefer the fresh 5100... ah so is life. The fresh 5100 is tangy! oh so tangy, in fact it just makes my mouth water thinking about it, the smell of vinegar and tomato, vegetables and plum, so delicious. The aged 5100 has greatly darkened, mellowed and defiantly smoothed out but removed all the fresh attributes that I love. I do prefer the Orange Virginia's that are used in the Christmas Cheer blends and wish that they would create a ribbon blend of Orange Virginia's but until then I will continue to buy 4 ounces of 5100 at a time since I do prefer it super fresh but YMMV so by all means try ageing your 5100 but understand that you will lose the delicious tang that it is known for when young. I will use the aged 5100 to enhance Haunted Bookshop and other C&D blends that need a better red Virginia or a shot of spice.

Age When Smoked: fresh and 10 years

Purchased From: Bufflehead Tobacco

4 people found this review helpful.

Denevei Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Denevei (58)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is probably the most popular of McClelland's bulk blends, and must be one of their most popular blends overall. 5100 is Virginia, straight up, and a wonderful tobacco for do-it-yourself blenders. It's also a great smoke on its own, which is how most people I know use it. The tobacco is sold in various amounts, but I like to buy at least a pound. According to McClelland, the blend starts as a cake, but is sold in a fully rubbed form. The pouch aroma is pleasant, but definitely smells like a robust Virginia tobacco.

5100 packs very nicely into a pipe. From the first light the blend delivers a nice, mild but full flavor typical of Virginia tobacco. There is a pleasantly creamy undertone to it, though not as noticeable as, say, McCranie's Red Flake or 5115. But the overtone is slightly fruitier than Red Flake, too. For my way of smoking, the flavor gets a bit stronger as I get through the bowl, but it remains pleasing and satisfying, never acrid. Like all Virginias, the sugar content of 5100 makes it likely to cause tongue bite if smoked hard, but an experienced Virginia smoker can enjoy this blend as an all-day smoke without worry.

5100 is an extremely pleasing and delicious tobacco. I've blended it with others, such as 2035, with some success, and have also added in a dash of perique. Perique, mixed lightly with 5100, gives it more fruitiness and seems to actually make it milder. I would have to say that this ranks as one of my favorite tobaccos. It's a standard by which other, similar blends may be judged. An amazing value for the price.

4 people found this review helpful.

Bonneville Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bonneville (49)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I've been meaning to review this tobacco for quite some time, and was only reminded that I haven't by the fact that McClelland has now ceased production of tobacco and is closing its doors. What a shame and what a loss for the pipe world!

5100 is a fantastic everyday Virginia. Simple on the surface but there is depth there for those really willing to explore. It is medium in body and strength. It's got a delicious tangy sweetness, packs easy, and burns perfectly. How do I describe the sweetness? Its so natural that its hard to draw comparisons. But I think if I had to describe the flavor, I would say it tastes like a fluffy marshmallow.

And man, I'm sure kicking myself for not stocking up more on this. I have only about a pound in my cellar. It really is such a perfect all-round Virginia. In fact, I can't think of a more versatile tobacco that has ever existed. Great for blending, breaking in new pipes, or puffing on all day enjoying the subtle nuances of the finest VA leaf America has to offer.

R.I.P. 5100 Red Cake. The pipe community mourns your loss.

Pipe Used: Peterson 106

Age When Smoked: 5 years

Purchased From: Beehive Cigars

3 people found this review helpful.

Knightsmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Knightsmoker (137)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a wonderful blend. If I rated as a VA it would be well above the average mark but it is more than that, it is in a fairly rare genre (at least for me) of being a blend of Red VA. Most red VA's that I have tried straight up to this point turn ashy and cigarette like but not here! This is what red VA is. Nice deep, rich tangy dark fruit notes that red VA should have. There is a light spice note, reminds me of cinnamon. A little earthy and a note here or there of toasted gain. Slightly complex but not overly so and can be smoked all day as it does not bite. It can be used to mix and adds depth as well as tang to other blends when added with a light hand. The nic. hit is mild. This is soft and round and I doubt that it will age well over a long period of time. One reviewer noted his experience with aging it and confirmed for me that fresh is as good as it gets, nice! I would highly recommend this to anyone looking to try red VA. anyone wanting to get to know the various nuances of a red to pick out more in other blends would due well to start here as well. Just a great blend.

Age When Smoked: Fresh

3 people found this review helpful.

SpeedyPete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SpeedyPete (29)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Very Mild Pleasant

I've been smoking Red Cake for quite a while now. As a straight VA smoke, it's one of the best, if not the best, red Virginias I've smoked so far. It's sweet tasting, easy to light and leaves a wonderful after taste. I'm also a VaPer lover and I sometimes add a tad of perique. But, with or without perique, this is one excellent tobacco and an everyday smoke that won't disappoint any true tobacco lover

Pipe Used: Various briars and cobs

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: 4noggins

3 people found this review helpful.

DeathMetal.org Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DeathMetal.org (120)
★★★★
Very Mild Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

The blends we reach for most are often those which are uncomplicated on the surface, but have hidden inner dimensions. When the jar or tin is first opened, "No. 5100 Red Cake" gives off the characteristic vinegar and fruit smell of McClelland Virginia blends which is frequently compared to ketchup, and not without reason. Relatively moist, the tobacco spills easily into the pipe and because it clumps easily, naturally forms a densely packed bowl. Upon lighting, the ketchup flavor transmits briefly, but then the vinegar seems to burn off and is replaced by the malt, rye and wine-like fruit flavor. After some effort to get it lit, the mixture burns relatively easily but will require a few re-lights, and rewards the smoker with multiple dimensions of straight Virginia flavor with its sugary edge removed, vegetative aftertaste trimmed, and a warm and pleasing inner collection of flavor metaphors emerging. Using the capillary pressure action of the breath smoking technique, a moderately experienced smoker will experience a tapestry of varying flavors from grain through something almost like Perique in its tangy, piquant fruitiness. Comparisons to wine are not overstated. At times, an inner sweetness emerges which is less raw than that of most Virginias, more like a background honey flavor mixed with the stronger taste of something oddly like wild rice or cracked wheat. The added moisture improves flavor at the expense of a few relights and more moisture in the bowl. Over time, this blend becomes a clear favorite for its chimeric character. It would be a good all-day smoke, but many of us use it instead as a favorite ingredient to mix with other blends, for example dumping it in a 1:3 ratio into "Burley Flake #1" or "Brown No. 4" to sweeten and expand the flavor and enhance the strength of the 5100, which is naturally quite mild.

2 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (1644)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

McClelland - No. 5100 Red Cake.

I remember hearing Matches860 describe this as a Religious Experience on one of his YouTube videos. That sold it to me!

The Cake has been rubbed to an easy to manage ribbon, and mine arrived with a good moisture content. In colour it comprises a few dark pieces, a couple of light ones, but is mostly a medium brown.

The smoke: the description does a pretty damn good job of summarising it! I find it an exceptionally easy-going blend. The Virginias give a relaxed and velvety flavour with a definite sweetness. The taste is unadulterated: it's pure, and untainted by extra flavours. I find it becomes EVEN MORE insouciant feeling as the bowl progresses, going from soft, to out-right silky! The burn from 5100 is great, as is the temperature.

The nicotine's mild, and I like the room-note.

No. 5100 Red Cake = highly recommended.

Four stars.

Pipe Used: Peder Jeppesen

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: 4noggins

2 people found this review helpful.

ddmholst Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ddmholst (23)
★★☆☆
Very Mild None Detected Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

first off the tin note, or jar note in this case, is outstanding. There is a bit of the ketchup smell but not as strong as say Xmas cheer or other mcclelland Virginias. There is a sweet and smoky fragrance like a good quality bbq sauce. When I first opened this I couldn't stop smelling it and started salivating at the prospect of smoking it.

Packing and lighting are basically par for the course. No real problems here. Although this does what most virginias do and doesn't burn exceptionally well. Requiring more relights than say a vaper. Not really a big deal. I tend to smoke my virginias sipped slow and on the verge of going out anyway.

Unfortunately this blend is too weak for me. I suppose it's mostly high notes but it's just too flat for me. I could see how a piper who likes light Virginias would love this. It's easy to obtain. Comes in bulk and is cheap. I enjoy smoking this but would just prefer it to be stronger. I suppose that's why I like strong vaper blends. Ones with a bit of kentucky.

Pipe Used: Mm cob and various briars

Age When Smoked: 1 month

Purchased From: Pipesandcigars.com

2 people found this review helpful.

Old Nate Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old Nate (17)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Ahh, 5100 Red Cake. I love this tobacco for its simplicity. It has that famous McClelland ketchup smell and I love it. The ribbon cut always seems to need about an hour of drying time but this can be smoked right out of the jar, but does perform best when you notice the weed no longer has that damp feeling.

Like I said, this is an easy tobacco to work with and packing can be done many different ways. Gravity fill, Frank method... Whatever. Once lit, it has a nice steady burn and there is a slight sweetness to this blend. My first go with it, I wasn't picking up any of the sweetness and was rather disappointed, but as I worked my way through my first 4 ounce purchase of 5100 I started picking up on it's charms. The sweet smoke has a slight roundness to it, nothing about it hits you in the face with flavor, it just slowly builds to a good all day smoke. Some friends told me it smells like cigarettes, but I believe the room note is wonderful.

I would recommend this to beginners as it is not strong at all and also to experienced pipe smokers looking for a good smoke in an affordable package.

Pipe Used: many

Age When Smoked: new and approx 1 year

Purchased From: B & M

2 people found this review helpful.

Flatticus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Flatticus (24)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is without doubt the bulk tobacco I smoke most often. I used to shy away from the ketchup note as well, but aired a bit and dried properly it's not detectable in the smoke to me. Not one dimensional to me, there's enough sweet and spicy both in this to keep me satisfied bowl after bowl. Smoked slow there's a wonderful, delicious nutty taste to it that I just cannot get enough of. Like others, I have found this an excellent blending base but mostly I just enjoy it on its own. This will be in my cellar for a very long time. At the price, given the quality, I just can't see not having a good bit of this put back. Definitely a staple for me.

Pipe Used: Meerschaum, Briar

Age When Smoked: Fresh up to a year

Purchased From: SmokingPipes.com

Similar Blends: McCranie's Red Ribbon, McCranie's Owners Choice.

2 people found this review helpful.

Smoke_Ring Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Smoke_Ring (158)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Very Pleasant

McCelland Bulk No. 5100 - Red Cake [this is not a cake cut]

Star Rating = 4

Rating Scores - 10 is the Best and 0 is the Worst

Pouch Note = 6

Room Note = 8

Flavor = 7

Bite = 8

Burn = 8

After Taste = 8

Raw Score =45

Rated Percentage = 75%

Comment = Smooth, Mid Strength Flavor, * Ketchup Pouch Note, but it's a tad Sweet

* Foot Note: McClelland famous "Ketchup" aroma and / or taste comes from the natural fermentation of unstoved / non flue curded Virginias that are aged in cakes.

2 people found this review helpful.

DoctorThoss Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DoctorThoss (146)
★★☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

I've smoked a lot of McClelland tinned products, and this was my first bulk offering. I wasn't exactly overwhelmed.

This stuff looks and smells great, mouht-watering even. But -- as if often the case with McClellands products -- it's way too mild for me. I picked up occasional hints of sweetness and hints of things like plum or apricot. In other words, typical red virginia accents. But I really had to strain to find them.

On the plus side, this stuff smokes very easily and bites less than most straight Vas.

This is two stars to my palate, but YMMV. At the least, I can see how some Va smokers really like it. But when I'm in the mood for this type of mixture, I'll pick Blackwoods Flake every time.

2 people found this review helpful.

KinnScience Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
KinnScience (30)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant

I've been smoking 5100 for a year along with other blends, particularly VA's in an attempt to find the best VA. Naturally, there are several that take the top slots including OG, HOTW, FVF, and yes 5100. (note: the above mentioned is not exhaustive as there are others that fell into the "top 10" but that is for another post)

Pipes brands used: Dunhill, Charatan, Ferndown, GBD, Peterson, Stanwell, and one Gourd Calabash. (all pipes were pre-1963 except the Stanwells and the Calabash).

5100 is the epitome of an English VA. It is so special that there is nothing else like it in my opinion. This tobacco, it may surprise some to know, is used in a number of high grade blends that are on the market today. It is a rich, full, and sweet red VA that ages like a dream.

When you first light the bowl you immediately taste the tangy sweet flavor of citrus inherent in this blend. I have read the minimalist comments of "ketchup" which I think carries a negative connotation. Anyone can reduce and/or minimize a complex flavor experience to some common reference. We could all say that wine tastes like Welches Grape juice or that caviar tastes like sea water. However, such reflections by the masses dismiss the subtle and complex flavorings that can only be detected by a patient and attentive palate.

As you move through a bowl of this remarkable leaf you find a smoky flavor enhanced by a bit of grass with an undertone of cashew that reflects continually off the dominant flavor of plum and fig which remain primary through the last few puffs. Toward the bottom there is a hint of raisin.

Buy this tobacco in bulk and age it. You will note an increase in all of these flavors within even a year of proper aging. This tobacco is a real gem and I can only hope that subsequent years are as kind.

I am amazed, not that such a wonderful leaf exists in our world, but that it is available in bulk. It truly is one of the most under-rated tobaccos I have come across, and I hope it continues to be available to everyone at an affordable cost.

Update: 3/31/11 This VA blend is still the best English VA on the market. McClelland warehouses have the best tobacco in the world. They are, IMO, the source for blenders who want to create notable tobacco blends. 5100 is a great tobacco to use as a foundation for some of the best blends in the world, and it is a great smoke by itself. Though I love flake/blends like OG, FVF, etc. I give 5100 4 stars for both its stand alone ability as well as being the best for blending. There is so many things you can do with 5100, that the possibilities are nearly endless.

I cracked open a 2 year old jar and never cease to be amazed at how aging can improve a VA. 5100 is no exception, and it becomes even better with age (if it is possible to improve upon perfection). I bought another 5 lbs of this because I never want to be without this blend and there is no way of knowing what the future holds. I did note that the price had gone up significantly (almost 50% increase over the original price) on this blend since I started purchasing about 3 years ago, not sure why. Sure, there have been increases in all tobacco for a number of reasons, but this one went up before the others ... and in excess of what the fed issues would warrant. Perhaps the importance of this Red VA became more obvious to everyone.

2 people found this review helpful.

steppx Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
steppx (152)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

I rarely meet a veteran pipe smoker who doesnt have a half pound of this around. Its a genuine classic. Not complex but absolutely delicious. It is what it is....red virginias. But this is McClelland and that means the best Virginias you can find in all of the world of pipe tobacco. There IS some nicotine, its not all that weak at all. Id rate the nic between mild and medium...right about half way. Many folks use this as a blender and Im sure it works fine that way but Im rating it as a straight smoke. Its a great all day smoke in fact and thats how I use it. Mild but flavorful and very cool smoking given its just virginia in a kind of thick ribbon cut. Its a classic of its kind, thats for sure. I highly recommend it. Pure tobacco. Three and half stars.

Purchased From: 4noggins

1 person found this review helpful.

Danno44 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Danno44 (8)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

What I have in cellar now and smoking has just over 1 year of age. The tin note to me is pleasant, a little sweet and nice light spice and a hint of the typical McClelland "ketchup" smell but not strong. Fresh it is still very good with more of the McClelland fresh smell, which I enjoy but many don't. Packs, lights, and burns very easy with a great taste. I enjoy this on its own, and have read it's a good mixer, but have yet to use as such. Very mild, light nicotine hit, overall a very pleasant and relaxing smoke. I get a sweet flavor that has no harshness or bite at all and a just hint of spice layered in the sweetness. In no way is it a sweet smoke like an aromatic can be, it's seems to me to be just the natural tobacco that's sweet with nothing added that I can taste. I don't pick up the ketchup taste at all but could be the reason behind the light tangy spice flavor. The taste is pretty constant throughout the bowl, maybe the last 1/3 is richer in flavor in a good way. I smoke it in primarily in two pipes, an Amorelli Billiard and a Basil Meadows Merchant Service Bing replica (made to the exact specifications used by the now defunct pipe company that made this style of pipe for Mr. Crosby). It smokes excellent in both pipes, but find it really shines in my Bing. Room note is pleasant and could easily be an all day smoke. I was gifted a sample with 14 years of age and it was outstanding. Based on that sample (flavors really blend together well and is extremely smooth), I consider this a "cellar it" blend and have some sitting and aging away.

Pipe Used: Amorelli Billiard, Basil Meadows Bing

Age When Smoked: Just over 1 year

1 person found this review helpful.

William H. Hardy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
William H. Hardy (76)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I wonder why it took me so long to try this stuff. It's actually pretty great. One-dimensional? Yeah, but it's really good for what it is. 5100 has some sort of sugar water sweetener added to it, which I wish was not there as heavily as it is, however it's not overpowering and does not interfere with the flavor of the tobacco. I wouldn't smoke it all day every day, but it could be an all day blend for you if you just want some mindless puffing. This is not to say that it is completely boring. There is some depth to this tobacco if it is smoked slowly. Now, as a caveat, I smoked this tobacco at about a month of age after it arrived from SmokingPipes. I think it has great potential for aging, though. If it's this good fresh, age can only improve it.

Strangely enough, when I opened the bag, the first thing I thought of was ginger cookies. There's a little spiciness and sweetness to it that reminds me of those. Yes, there's a bit of the McClelland "McVinegar," but this has never really bothered me.

As a straight Virginia, I would give this a 3.4 or higher. As a blender, I have to give it higher marks; it works magically with just about anything that you might want to mix it with. I can see this as a great mixer with Latakia or Perique or even with heavier blends when one wants to tone them down a bit. Try it out. If you like straight Virginias, this stuff is great. It never bit me and leaves little to no moisture after the smoke. It can become ashy during the last bit of the bowl, but most tobaccos can become ashy when smoked in a large enough bowl.

1 person found this review helpful.

Stefanos Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stefanos (150)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a fantastic uncomplicated tobacco! Fantastic full taste at medium strength. It is nutty, sweetly spiced, mildly tangy. I am sure there is some sweet nutty topping here absolutely congruent with the natural tobacco taste. Mike McNeil is a master at that. Perfect smoked on its own and very good when used in blends.

I could imagine myself smoking only this tobacco and being satisfied. Do yourself a favor and purchase a load if you don’t have already!

Similar Blends: McClelland's Aurora and quite similar in style and strength to the Grand Oriental series tobaccos without the Orientals..

1 person found this review helpful.

LannarkGent Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LannarkGent (111)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a good, solid look at the stars virginia, I did not find the Vitamin N to be overwhelming. A pleasant tobacco that is highly smokeable.

1 person found this review helpful.

gladi8tor96 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gladi8tor96 (133)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Dark brown, red, and a few black ribbons comprise this tobacco in the bag. Sweet, tangy, earth are the flavors I get when I sniff from the bag.

Loads and lights easily with just one match. Behaves well, but can smoke wet if packed too tight and/or too fast. Burns down to a nice white ash.

The smoke is sweet and rich. Tastes of molasses, fig, bread, with hints of wood, and tangy highlights. Absolutely no bite or spice. This is a great red VA blend. Reminds me a lot of Virginia Woods, but without the topping. The flavor of this tobacco seems more natural. This is not a smoke that needs contemplation...it's one to pack and go for an enjoyable journey. One of my favorite red va blends.

Pipe Used: Cob, Billard, Bones

Age When Smoked: 1-3 Months

Purchased From: Pipesandcigars.com

Similar Blends: McClelland - Virginia Woods (Craftsbury Series), Hearth & Home - Louisiana Red (Signature Series).

1 person found this review helpful.

Planet Scott Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Planet Scott (60)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The tin/pouch note is overwhelming ketchup/Worcestershire. Moist but not wet, takes time to dry sufficiently. Once dried properly, it packs well, lights easily and stays lit with relights only needed if I set it down for extended periods. As others have mentioned, not overly complex, but a solid, decent straight Virginia. Slightly spicy, grassy and sweet. Nothing overpowers or overwhelms.

3.5 stars.

1 person found this review helpful.

Jesperff Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jesperff (4)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

When I tried this tobacco first time many moons ago it was love at first puff - what a pleasant smoke though it took a little time to get used to the characteristic but not unpleasant McClelland 'ketchup aroma'. However, these days I only smoke it with some age on it (+1 year) and it seems that the major changes (improvements) happen after at least 6 months when it becomes very smooth. And the 'ketchup' more or less disappears.

Maybe It becomes too smooth and pleasant actually, it does stay the same during a bowl and is not what I'd call interesting or complex. But I sure like it :-)

Also excellent for blending experiments as a rather neutral and very forgiving background to more 'exotic' weeds.

Pipe Used: Mostly Stanwell Billiards

Age When Smoked: At least 6 months, preferably more

Similar Blends: Aged 5100 is pretty close to McClelland's Virginia Woods.

1 person found this review helpful.

JimmerWest Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimmerWest (5)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The Best Red leaf I've seen and the sweet flavor is astoundingly terrific. Smoked by itself alone in the bowl makes for a mild but enticing adventure. In fact, it made me take to the jungle and explore what it can become when mixed with GLPease Montgomery. Well, in a word Fabulous but more importantly it is what was missing in Montgomery to twain together for a pure unadulterated enjoyable flavorful sweet surprise smoke. All the way down to a quarter inch from the bottom of the bowls and bowls smoked so far. I mixed 8 ounces of Montgomery to 8 ounces of 5100 Red Cake. Unbelievable Richness!

1. Better Still, Air Dry both Montgomery and No. 5100 Red Cake on a large platter for 16 hours.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Tortuga 305, Roma 804, Porto Cervo 812

Age When Smoked: Brand new out of the Tin

Purchased From: www.cupojoes.com

1 person found this review helpful.

ATW Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ATW (45)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I have some that's 4 years old. Purchased 2 oz as my first pipe tobacco away from Capt. Black. Bought 2 more Oz a week later and ventured on to other blends but I dipped into 5100 every so often. Not much else to say about it except that's it is definitely worth buying and gets better with age. It's smooth but will bite is your not careful. The bite does get better with age. It has s creaminess akin to Mississippi River without the other tobacco. Just a nice simple but deep VA. I got 2 more oz yesterday and compared it. I enjoy this stuff but age does a lot of good with this stuff. It mellows out the possibility of bite by a long shot. The 4 year old doesn't bite me like the new sample does. My mouth is pretty raw from the new sample. Still a flavorful creamy blend but I strongly recommend age on it. That being said I give it 3 stars because of the large difference of bite that it gives.

Pipe Used: Briar and cobs

Age When Smoked: 4 years old and new

Purchased From: Ye Ole Pipe Shoppe

Similar Blends: Virginia components of SPC Mississippi River.

1 person found this review helpful.

Old German puffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old German puffer (106)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

With the rain pouring down today I opened a jar of 5100. One of my winter indoor smokes. Jar has been sitting for several years. It is perfect. Multidimensional in taste I have 3 pipes that I hold for just this blend. It packs well with a nice palm roll. Flavor changes with each puff. I really like it when I get half way down to the bottom of the pipe. Never gets to hot and the flavor gets better the longer I smoke it. Thank you fall.

Pipe Used: Tinderbox Monza

Age When Smoked: bulk in jars over 5 years

Purchased From: WASH. DC

1 person found this review helpful.

leacha Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
leacha (15)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Since I do not have a highly refined palate, it's hard to describe tastes and flavors that I experience. I only know what I like and do not like. So here's my rating scale and a brief reason for the rating.

★★★★ = Excellent - Apocalypse blend, cellar worthy.

★★★☆ = Good - Not part of regular roatation but keeping a few tins/ounces is wise.

★★☆☆ = Fair - A smokable blend that is worth trying again.

★☆☆☆ = Poor - Do not smoke! Trade off or give away to the unsuspecting.

Because tastes and blends change over time and depending on what pipe is used, I reserve the right to change my rating at any time.

1 person found this review helpful.

SecretAgentMan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SecretAgentMan (27)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I smoked 3 bowls on 2 successive nights through an MM Washington. Took a bit of drying before I could really enjoy it, say about 20-30 minutes out of the pouch. The first impression that sprang to mind when I began puffing was, "barbecued chicken." Sweet, a bit tangy, with a hint of earthiness but not heavy or in your face. Early on I got the impression of peanuts and raisins, which became more intense and changed as the bowl diminished to hazlenuts and currants, with an added pleasant note of cumin. Nicotine strength slowly and gently increased to a moderate level by the end of the bowl. I really enjoyed this and recommend it.

Pipe Used: MM Washington

Age When Smoked: 1 week from purchase

1 person found this review helpful.

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

This is a very pleasant, simple and natural smoke.

It does indeed have hints of tomato in the smell. While burning it is gently sweet, and at times a little toasty. In short a mild, natural tobacco experience.

There hasn't been an OTC Virginia in a long time... Schermerhorn Flake maybe? But I agree with beaupipe, this gives a similar experience as some of the old reliable OTC Burley blends, but with more natural sweetness.

If you enjoy a simple straightforward and mild smoke you will like this. It is widely available and very affordable here in the U.S.

1 person found this review helpful.

dedalto Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dedalto (24)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

This is my all day tobacco. I think I went through 5 pounds this year. I suppose aging would improve if I ever had any left. Nary a gurgle, a nip, or a relight problem. Just put in pipe, lite same, contentment.

I find it is actually complex smoke. It never tastes the same. Sometimes sweet and grassy. Other times it has a sweet and sour burn. Always tasty and blissful.

Oh, and I use this stuff like salt. I put it everything. Lately, I have been doing 1/2 red cake and 1/2 Briar Fox which makes for a tasty treat.

Red Cake is my good morning kiss and my evening prayer. 4 Stars

1 person found this review helpful.

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

McC 5100... Originally buying this Virginia tobacco for blending purposes, I soon discovered it also is superb smoke as is. It is sold as a bulk product, and I find the moisture content about right straight from the baggie, but if need be, it can be easily changed. For review purposes, my favorite pipe for this stuff is a medium briar, which I load with a bit more tamp pressure than normal. Getting it lit properly, takes a little more effort. About 3 tamp and lights have become my SOP for this stuff, but once underway, you are in for a real treat. Smooth, bite free and volumes of flavorful smoke. Take your time with this stuff, and it is anything but boring, want a flavor change? Increase or lower your sipping rate, and there it is... Or not, it's up to you, it seems to be well mannered, under a wide range of smoking styles, not that many pure Virginias can make that claim. So what started out as basic blender, has provided me with one of my favorite, any time smokes. Add a dash or two to a plain drugstore burley, and you may be real surprised. McClelland fills yet another space in my rotation. 4 Stars.

1 person found this review helpful.

radioisotope Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
radioisotope (17)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I have been smoking this off and on for about a month now. I was fortunate enough to find it at my local tobacconist. To me it is one of the best VA's I've smoked. At first it is nutty with light fruit notes, but in a natural sense. As you move down the bowl it becomes more like baked buttery bread. I was still greeted by a good sweet tobacco flavor. Lately I've learned that Va's are good when mixed with perique so I went to my Tobacconist and got some straight perique, went home and threw about 20% in with the 5100 and it is astonishing! The flavor is hard to describe but it will knock your socks off, maybe like a spicey plumb, mixed with baked bread? Lots of Vitamin N. Good tobacco flavor still pleasent though. If you love perique and Va's this is the way to go. I also would recomend putting some in a mason jar and storing it away. My tobacconist said it can be hard to get in the U.S., and it is great for aging!

1 person found this review helpful.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (180)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Sweet, tangy Red Virginia that says McClelland as soon as you open the bag! This tobacco has grown on me over the years, it was a bit too subtle for me early on, but my tastes have definitely come around. I smoke 5100 often after dinner as a sweet palate cleanser, I find that the gentle tang and easy sweetness are very enjoyable after a meal. This is one tobacco that I would recommend that everyone should try and if it's not to your liking, revisit it every five years or so, 5100 may yet surprise you.

Highly Recommended

Purchased From: Bulk - from local B&M

1 person found this review helpful.

sasha Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sasha (228)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Great Virginia, if I had been in McClelland's chiefs shoes I would have tinned it. The ketchup flavour is not so evident as in other productions of this brand, so you can easily detect the great quality of the leaf. The burning is cool and even, the taste keeps mild but present throughout the bowl. A little too mild for me but a fine smoke

1 person found this review helpful.

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

If you don't mind not having fancy tins or you are on a budget, this is a very tasty, round and non-bitey red virginia. Very highly recommended, and it becomes even better with a pinch of Perique. Not wet, with less of the usual McC ketchup. Fruity, sweet (with notes of cinnamon) and sour at the same time: a marvelous tobacco that you must try at least once! I would even dare to say that it's better than most of McC's tinned tobaccos!

1 person found this review helpful.

arpie55 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
arpie55 (64)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I happened upon this at a local cigar shop that sells pipes and tobacco with a pretty good selection of bulk blends. Knowing that McClelland's were hard to come by since their going out of business I decided to buy an ounch at a hefty $5.99. After about my second bowl I was so impressed by the pleasent, smooth smoke of this blend I went back to the cigar shop and bought 4 more ounces at the $5.99/ounce price tag. Expensive but worth it. Unfortunately, even if you want to try this you will be hard pressed to find it, I believe the shop that I bought it from might have a few ounces left.

The bag note of this is super, it is fully rubbed but requires a little seperating before packing, it lights easily but does require a few relights through about the first 1/3 of the bowl but then levels out to a nice rythmic smoke with medium volume. The flavor is sweet but not over the top; mild and consistent with a good aftertaste. No tongue bite and does not get hot. Overall, somewhat reminiscent of Dark Star in flavor but maybe not quite as bold or complex.

What a loss

Pipe Used: Savinelli, Radice, Ascorti

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Cutter's Cigar

Similar Blends: Dark Star.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

OhioTony76 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
OhioTony76 (24)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Very Pleasant

Is it Lakeland topping? Is it flowery? Is it sweet? I don’t know. Whatever light topping is on this tobacco I like it, I know that. The top note is very light and more noticeable on the retro. This tobacco is so smooth and easy going. It’s what I smoke when I don’t know what to smoke. Smoke slow for best results.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

thebriarbear Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
thebriarbear (8)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This tobacco transports me back in time to when I first started smoking a pipe. My local tobacconist started me with some red Virginia blends from McClelland to get me away from the goopy Aromatics I had been smoking at the time. Every time I pack a bowl, I am immediately swept away to the crisp fall nights of my first semester of college, accompanied by the rich, dark, tangy fruits that this blend has to offer.

The ketchupy tin aroma does slightly translate to the first third or so of the bowl, so make sure that it is your cup of tea, I know some people are put off by it. Mind you, this isn't Christmas Cheer, quite. This is a bit more monochromatic than most of the Christmas Cheer blends I have tried, but it is an unmatched red Virginia like none other. There is a bit of earthy spiciness that this blend can give as well, that is very pleasant, along with the typical McClelland musty Virginia taste. Mine always did tend to smoke a touch on the moist side, so be sure to give this McClelland a good dry time, since they love to retain their moisture.

This is a mellow smoke, that will not lash at your tongue in anger if you try to rush him. It is a delightfully mild tobacco as well, with no noticeable nicotine hit. Stock up, this one is not one you want to run out of, seeing that it is a reasonably priced bulk. Overall, this is a perfect red Virginia that will be one for the history books, I'm afraid, since just this year McClelland announced its extinction. Get some if you can get it, you will not be disappointed.

RIP 5100.

Pipe Used: Briar

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hawky454 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hawky454 (93)
★★★☆
Extremely Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

This is a nice intro into the world of VA's. It's got great flavor and produces thick clouds of creamy smoke. It is very forgiving and won't bite you even if you call it names and slap it around a little. I usually enjoy this as a "chore" blend for when I'm doing "honey-do's" around the house. Also makes for a great blending tobacco if you want to try blending your own baccies at home. It's a little weak and boring to get my undivided attention but it definitely serves its purpose and it will get ya going in the right direction.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Sheldon Richman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sheldon Richman (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

First impression: excellent! Toasted but not fruity. Little or no nic-hit- I can see this as a daily smoke. A good tobacco to enjoy while working. Very nice!

Pipe Used: Clay

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Pipes and Cigars

Similar Blends: Dark Star, but lighter..

Nobody has rated this review yet.

AnglicanSmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
AnglicanSmoker (4)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Mild Tolerable

Excellent tobacco. This is a definite favorite. It's got a great, pure, mild sweetness to it and it made me fall in love with Red Virginia's. Easy to smoke and doesn't fry the tongue. If you're used to flavor bombs this one might seem lacking until you smoke several bowls through the same pipe. This is a great introduction to Red Virginia's and I can't blame you if you start with this one and end with this one.

Age When Smoked: Fresh to aged 10 years

Purchased From: various retailers

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Right Wing Piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Right Wing Piper (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This tobacco stands well enough on it's own, but as a blending tobacco it really shines. The tobacco ages remarkably well and produces a natural sweetness just not found in aromatic products. Smoked properly, there will be no bite and could very easily be used as an all day smoke.

Pipe Used: Meerschaum, briar, cob

Age When Smoked: 6 months

Purchased From: Just For Him

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Foz594 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Foz594 (5)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Wow! This is a rich satisfying and naturally sweet Virginia. Packed well, minimal relights. Let it dry a bit and from the first draw I was hooked. Full tobacco flavor, no flavorings, all natural. This is a rich luxurious and silky sweet bowl full of chewy scrumptiousness. This is why tobacco is my favorite vegetable

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This may lack the richness of some other VAs but it's not lacking in flavour. Despite its cut, it burns slowly and doesn't easily overheat. I didn't get any tongue bite. The ketchup scent is noticeable in the pouch note but isn't as strong as some of McC's tinned VAs.

I'd buy again.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Lyle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lyle (30)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is a great blend, period. It's often used as a blending component, but I love it straight and I think it's a good example of a simple, solid Virginia tobacco. I use the word "simple" in the sense of "pure", not one-dimentional.

I bought a large amount of this at one time and I keep it a resealable jar, on hand for times when I need a dependable Virginia ribbon. I don't have experience with aging it for any length.

If you want a reference for Red Virginia, go no further. If you want a delicious, high quality Virginia, go no further. If you want something to blend with condimental tobaccos, by all means, start here.

Pipe Used: Many, mostly dedicated to VA

Age When Smoked: I bought mine in 2009, but keep opening the jar

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Autumn joy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Autumn joy (48)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Red cake 5100 I was first skeptical of this blend because I always take not of the tobacco scent before I smoke. Well I need some fries with this tobacco because it smells like ketchup as mentioned in other reviews and I agree. Anyways I did not judge this by its cover and packed and lit it. The smoke was rather enjoyable the Virginias really shined in this blend adding that good sweet virginia flavoring. I would recommend this to any pipe smoker looking to try a good English blend.

Pipe Used: Meerschaum

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Pipes and cigars

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bluesmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bluesmoke (75)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Ahhh, the classic red cake. Another wonderful staple of McC. This is a mild, mellow, easy burning blend which has notes of sweet red wine, grassiness, hay, and roasted nuts. This one is great to store/cellar and have on hand always for a simple yet simply satisfying smoke. These flavors are not over powering, but pure in their presentation, definitely an easy smoke to enjoy in dreams lost to the hours of a relaxing day or evening. BYWTPOTHS

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Hybrid12 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hybrid12 (26)
★★★★
Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant

While not normally being a fan of straight Virgina, this weed is exceptional in taste, strength and quality. It has a slight sweet essence with a hint of fruit for flavoring. Though I would classify this as medium strength, I was surprised by the nicotine in this weed. This may in fact be the best Virgina tobacco I have had the pleasure of puffing on. This weed goes straight to the top of my list and will be a mainstay. This is a must try for any aromatic lover!

Pipe Used: cob

Age When Smoked: right out of the mail

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Highly recommended for blending or stand alone. Very soft in texture and taste, and I will often reach for this when in the mood for something light on the palate and easy smoking. Priced reasonably it is a good value in bulk.

Pipe Used: various

Age When Smoked: fresh from bulk order

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Tin description says "exceptionally soft". But don't misunderstand it. Yes, this blend isn't robust at all, it has no striking, predominant notes. But the mixture of Virginias in it produces lots of fine and pleasant details. To me it seems really quite deep and sophisticated. So try to concentrate on it, puff it slowly, and it will reward you with a rich and very satisfying smoke.

The only reason why I can't give it all four stars is this. The taste of tobacco itself is so mild, that the ketchup really stands out above it. Sometimes feels like smoking an aromatic.

Pipe Used: L'Anatra

Similar Blends: McClelland - Aurora (Collector Series).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mnadz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mnadz (66)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I usually find virginias way to mild for me. I am probably going to stop trying to find a straight virginia that I like. Saying that, this one did offer a little more punch than most I have tried. If I had to smoke a straight virginia, it would be this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jallen49 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jallen49 (24)
★★★★
Mild Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Its true that this is a one dimensional blend, but that one dimension is a delicious one.

The ketchup smell is there, but it doesn't translate in the smoke... The taste to me is a mildly earthy, very musty taste, with just a touch of that Virginia zest.

Smokes cool, mostly dry, and is overall well behaved.

Can't fault it! Classic old reliable Virginia.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Rich red VA blend. A little one dimensional, but deep and satisfying. Slight tanginess which is appealing. No tongue bite.

A nice change of pace for this regular smoker of English blends.

I'd smoke it again.

3 stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

quantumboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
quantumboy (130)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The first ten minutes it's lovely. The next ten minutes it's good. The next ten minutes it's average.

Not a favorite, but a nice MOTR red virginia for those who enjoy a spicy red VA ribbon. If this is your type of smoke you'll probably find a nice all-day blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This is one of the most popular ready-rubbed bulk Virginias on the market these days. It's also a widely used blending tobacco, both for home chemists and store-brand mixologists. It's easy to understand its popularity, I guess. It's inoffensive, and forms a pleasant base for all manner of add-ons.

On its own, 5100 is a decent, if innocuous, smoke. The tobacco is a pretty reddish brown color, well rubbed out. On the nose it suggests sweetness with dried fruit aromas (figs and sun-dried tomato) mixed in with a vegetal smell reminiscent of tomato leaves. In the pipe, 5100 is moderately sweet, reasonably smoky, and a little dull.

If there were any OTC Virginias remaining in the US market, I bet they'd have a lot in common with 5100. It's not bad, but it is a little bland, pale, light. This stuff is, I suppose, worth keeping on the shelf in case an uncomplicated, mild-mannered Virginia is called for.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrT999 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrT999 (266)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant

Mild and mellow -- a nice slightly (and naturally) sweet straight Virginia. May be too mild for some, but I enjoy it.

Since I know there are many tobaccos out there I would rate a 4, the question arises would I rebuy this particular tobacco, assuming my tastes don't change much more. In this case, the answer is not very often.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Capt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Capt (171)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Carter Hall is my all day burley, Red cake is my all day VA. This is a great blend for yard work and chores. Doesn't require a lot of attention, and won't bite.

This is a rare blend for McClelland, as it doesn't have a nose full of vinegar like most of their VA's. Although somewhat monotone, it can add depth to blends that lack it. It has a nice nutty flavor that is pleasant outside or in.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (320)
★★★☆
Mild Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

For myself, this tobacco is too mild, no N hit. I tend to stoke this up trying to get some N and all I do is overheat the tobacco and cause bite. This is all my fault and should not be held against the truly fine Virginia this is. The tobacco is sweet, packs easy, burns well and has a nice flavor (it's almost like it contained a touch of Perique, raisin tingle almost like the base for Escudo). I can see where this would make a very nice blending tobacco, maybe with some Perique or a touch of Prince Albert.

Update:For something extra special, blend 50% Mac Barens Virginia #1 with 50% 5100 Red Cake. This seems to make the Red Cake more interesting and at the same time eliminate the bite from the V#1. Another blend to try is 2/3 RC and 1/3 C&D's Briar Fox ; this gives a little base to the RC and a little more interest to the BF.

Update: Every time I try this It just gets better. I've had this cellared now for 6 months and it is good. More interesting , the McC Vinegar is now that tangy sweet and sour, I love it. I've got to buy more and cellar. Good just straight. It is very similar to Aurora not quite as flavorful, but close, and for the price, it beats it. Bumped to 4 stars.

Updated 9/15/2014- I've slightly soured on this blend and reduced my rating to 3 stars. I agree with reviewer , " pipeline 2006-01-08 " ( 8years ago!), in that if you find a flavoring you should try to identify it.....Sooooo , I feel there is a minor "Lakeland Floral" scent and taste . I really don't remember this in some of my earlier bulk batches, I think it is more of a quality control issue in processing this batch bulk run after a batch of "Old World Classic #5115" without the proper cleaning of their equipment? I'm not a fan of LF.

Pipe Used: cob

Age When Smoked: 8 months

Similar Blends: McC Old World Classic Cake #5115 , P&C's -Scotty's Old Red.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JohnnyMcPiperson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JohnnyMcPiperson (108)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This was a nice sweet VA I had a small sample of it a couple summers ago and I enjoyed it okay. Found it to be nice on a sumer afternoon with a book at the coffee shop. It was mild enough that it melded well with the summer heat, and yet it had enough sweet flavor to keep me going throughout the bowl. Good enjoyable, mild VA, no bite, nice and smooth!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

grumpyoldprofessor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
grumpyoldprofessor (11)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

5100 has been my favorite Virginia blend for several years now. It's not exciting or bursting with flavor, but it does always have a good smooth flavor, which I can most easily describe as lightly sweet and buttery. It's consistant and consistantly good.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Hemlock Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Hemlock (60)
★★★★
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

OK, so it smelled like cloves in the 1 lb bulk bag. I was worried it was the wrong blend. This is appears to be topped, but not cased. After taking out a couple oz. into a jar for a few days, the clove aroma dissipated and the more characteristic Mc. VA aroma was apparent. Kind of cool how blenders know how to manage a blend from bulk, mass recipe concoctions to end up as a few grams of a totally different aroma and flavour by the time it become a gram or three in a bowl.

Good smoking, slightly treated with PEG, and a generally good blend for trouble free, readily burning VA. Gives the same satisfaction of a good VA flake without the work. Despite the apparent topping, it turns out to have a VA flavour throughout. Good for regular smoking, albeit, might be considered a bit plain so a good base for adding a dash of perique or some other condiment of your liking.

-- Red Cake is a solid foundation tobacco, worthy of keeping around by the pound in mason jars. With a dash of perique sprinkled in, one creates an archetypal VaPer. Huge volumes of smoke emerge after a proper charring light-- and it can last a full bowl with single match. Inoffensive smoke, with a briny... including a loveley woodsy, stewed fruit depth of flavour when I sprinkle with perique and have it to the right dryness. This is one of the pinnacles of pipe smoking enjoyment and should be in your cellar if you like aromatics, virginias or VaPers

Nobody has rated this review yet.

strongirish Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strongirish (249)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Once in awhile, I am in the mood for an evening VA blend smoke but I am more of a burley smoker. I love the VA taste, but my main complaint is that it usually bites for me as I am a rather fast smoker, just my personality. But this one surprised me. It was smooth, tasty and biteless in my large Stanwell billiard. It did have the vinegar ketchup smell of McClellands in the pouch but not at all in the taste. It lit rather easily after loading and smoked down to the bottom leaving a fine ash in the bottom without any moisture at all. It is kind of a riff rubbed out flake medium brown in appearance, and as I smoke it I was just rewarded with a clean, honest, sweet smoke with a very nice room note. I really enjoyed this blend and was ready to reload and go another round.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

catdaddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
catdaddy (18)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

This is a high grade blend of some of the finest Virginia tobaccos you will find in bulk form. It ages well, keeps it's moisture level well and seems impervious to the elements. When all my other tobacco has gotten too dry or moist due to the weather, Red Cake is always spot on. It has become my go-to tobacco and in my top 5 overall.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Fly ticky Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Fly ticky (26)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Very Full Very Pleasant

This is one of my favorites.A very straight forward virginia.You can smoke it straight or blend it with tobacco that dont suit ya.I like it straight but also patch things with it.Ok gents give it a try if ya like virginias you will like this.Its good enough to be tinned.Also ages well.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pseudo Nim Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pseudo Nim (110)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This was love at first pipe. I do like a red virginia, so I bought a half pound from 4noggins and now my only regret is that it wasn't five pounds.

I'm not overly fond of the ketchup smell that seems to eminate from McClelland tobacco's, but for a tobacco as rich and tasty as this, I could forgive almost anything, smooth burning and no bite, takes well to the match and low maintenance, burning down to a fine white ash and well behaved throughout the bowl.

This may yet find it's way into rotation, if not, then a special treat (on a regular basis).

IMHO, this would be an excellent tobacco for an Aromatic smoker to try, should they want to come over to straight virginias, but require a little more taste ie sweetness, that are to be found in some flakes, and/or do not feel happy about handling flakes.

A well earned four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

One of my McClelland favorite along with 2010 and bwf. This one is very gentle smoke, please the palate, soft, simple, some chocolate background and creamy feeling.

If you like Anniversary kake or w.o.laresen old fashioned you will probably love this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

al1 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
al1 (58)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Tolerable

This is ok. Not much more. It has some kind of humectant in it that prevents a proper airing out from doing much good.

If you don't mind a wet dottle this might suit you. I demand a tobacco smoke dry to the heel, or I pass on it. I pass on this one. It tastes good from first light, this is deceiving because it always goes sour around half to two thirds of a bowl.

I love mcclellands tobaccos, They are practically all I smoke and this and 5110 are their only non aromatics I have found the humectant characteristics in so far.

I suspect the humectant is to keep the hay grassy nose burning smoke this type of tobacco can produce at bay. Unfortunatley the smoking qualities are disrupted as well. After mid bowl the steam kicks and the good brown sugar flavor goes flat from all the moisture the humectant won't let escape. You can't keep this lit either due to the moisture. Very frustrating blend. If it would dry I believe it would have much better/ richer flavor.

I love Mc 2000, 2010, 2020, 2035, #27, #24, #22 and christmas cheer- these always smoke dry and cool to the heel after a little airing out. I support Mcclelland to the fullest as I smoke their stuff about 99% of the time. I just don't enjoy this 5100.

Try it, you may just enjoy it. If you are the kind of smoker like me take what I said into consideration. I smoked pounds of this aged and fresh over the last year before writing this review.

If you will check my profile you will see this is sadly the lowest I have ever rated a Mcclelland blend. So it goes I guess.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Just another great Virginia from McClelland, only that this one's got nothing that will keep me coming back to it. This blend provides a sweet, smooth smoke, but it lacks the depth and subtetlies of other great MC like Blackwoods Flake.

Great blend to smoke now and then, and even better for blending your own mixtures.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This is rapidly becoming a favourite, albeit with one ounce of perique to one pound of tobacco. Without it, it's still pleasant enough, but the perique releases so much more flavour and sweetness to the blend that I'd rather not smoke it without it. It's one of the bulk blends that is, as far as I am concerned, perfectly smokeable straight out of the bag....unlike 5120 for instance. Having said that, I've jarred up 4 lbs for the cellar! The smoke is a lot fruitier and fresher than 5120; it's not quite so ready to bite as some other McClellands and at the amount of perique I use, there's no real pepperiness. All in all a good smoke my friends. I keep an old Mc tin full and the smell of the tobacco is delightful. All in all a worthy 4 stars....even without the storage but definitely with the perique. IMHO it does need the perique. Without it, its pleasant but a bit dull.

Update June 2008

I love this stuff...have settled to my 5100 + perique blend as the everyday tobacco in my pouch. Friends love the smell of the unsmoked tobacco as much as the smoke itself. Treated gently there's no bite though if I'm working in the garden or doing any task where I am likely to puff too often (one of my faults) then I fall back on Carter Hall or PA.

Update June 2009

Just gets better and better...5100+perique...sweeter, fruitier and richer in flavour. What I love about it is that I can smoke 2015 and have a creamier, bread dough like VAPER and then 5100/Perique to contrast it. Two utterly outstanding blends from McClelland. God Bless them.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

haredawg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
haredawg (47)
★☆☆☆
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

I just can?t hang with the whole ketchup thing. I don?t want my tobacco to smell like a corn dog minus the corn dog and leaving just stick and ketchup. The flavor was adequate once it started burning. I used most of the two ounces I had purchased in bulk to mix in with a locally blended heavy latakia blend (cascade Cigar in Portland Oregon, Trafalgar blend)mainly to hide the smell I didn?t find the red cake very interesting by itself all condiments aside, the real benefit is the stuff is cheap and it?s not awful.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Jazzplayer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jazzplayer (9)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This tobacco is a good everyday tobacco. It is sweet with a nutty aftertaste. I would agree that the longer this tobacco is aged the better it gets! I have tried the tobacco fresh and one that came from being stored for 9 months, what a difference! I have one jar still in storage and will let that one sit for another year.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

romaso Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
romaso (43)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a full-bodied Red Virginia that is also naturally sweet. There may also be an added sweetness, but if so it's quite mild. I find this much more interesting that the light Virginias like 2010.

This is one of my favorites.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dualkarnain Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dualkarnain (75)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

Wow! I just had my first bowl of 5100 and I'm impressed with the taste. I haven't aged it yet so can't comment as to the benefits letting it sit may provide.

The sweetness is unique and enjoyable; I'll order more in the future.

Goes perfect with some brandy and cran.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bugenhagen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bugenhagen (9)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I've been experimenting off and on with various McClelland Virginias, and this one (5100) has so far turned out to be my favorite. It is cool, sweet, and nutty. The pouch aroma isn't like other McC Va's. No ketchup.

It takes a bit to get it lit, but once lit, it smokes cool and evenly down the bowl. I learned about this from a friend who gave me a few ounces of it that he'd been cellaring for about a year or so. Then my son brought some home with him from Annapolis in the guise of a local house blend. I will be buying more of this very soon.

UPDATE 2016! After ten year I still stand by my comments above. Red Cake is a mild to medium Virginia that is a nice change of pace from others like Capstan, Dunhill Flake, and Orlik's Golden Sliced. It also mixes well with burleys in blending.

Bugenhagen

Pipe Used: Peterson, Missouri Meerschaum

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RCUSElder Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RCUSElder (244)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I have been smoking this blend on and off for the last couple of years. My original batch was purchased by a BOB who had it for about 5 years (so he said)before he pawned off to me. Recently, I purchased some fresh for comparison. All I can say is that this is a delicious red VA! Whether fresh or aged, it is delicious. I am ussually a Balkan lover, but sometimes I'll smoke this exclusively for a couple of days, it is that good. It has the flavor of Hal O'the wynd, but without the knock out punch of nicotine and strength build up of that blend. In fact, I find it sweeter and more fragrant too. DGT is to die for. A dedicated pipe is recommended to get the most of this blend. The main difference between fresh and aged is that the fresh can be a little nippy if smoked fast. If sipped, no tongue-bite. Get some, age some, and enjoy. Truly, a blend that should be listed among the classic great VA's. Enjoy...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Ranger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ranger (64)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A naturally sweet smelling, pleasantly tasty, all day smoke. Nicely cut and at the perfect moisture level for smoking in any size pipe. Maybe not the "best" leaf on the market, but a decent cost versus quality ratio.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

McClelland?s 5100 is the quintessential all day smoke. It might not be as complex as other Virginia blends but it burns well, taste great and doesn?t roast your mouth. This has become one of the most consistent tobaccos in my smoking rotation. This tobacco will do you well and I highly recommend that you give it a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Based on the reviews here, this tobacco is well liked by the masses but I will be among the few dissenters although I certainly like most McClelland blends to varying degrees. While I liked the looks and pouch aroma of 5100, it proved to be marginally sweet and monochromatic in the bowl. I found its burning qualities lacking as well. Its burn is non uniform, i.e., it burns in the center of the bowl but not the edges. A tobacco that has poor burning qualities is a big negative for me. I think this tobacco is best suited for blending and not to be smoked straight. I much prefer McCrainie?s Red Ribbon, a more upscale, tastier, better burning and pricier version of 5100 and worth the extra price.

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

I rate this tobacco 5.0 out of 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Danno Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Danno (102)
★★★☆
Very Mild Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

5100 is a simple, tasty ribbon virginia. Not complex, very mild in delivery and strength and easy on the palate. I have played with mixing a dollop of perique into it as well and the results are good, but not comparable to 2015. I enjoy this tobacco on occasion, when I have time to indulge it with my undivided attention and a good cup of tea. Delightful in its honesty. Refreshing in its humilty.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Actually a little mono flavored for my main smoke. But as a Virginnia it is very hard to beat. Probably the best bulk Virginnia available. Makes a great mixer too. Takes a slow draw like most of this type to avoid the feared tongue-bite when smoked straight. I would love to have a few pounds of this after a long term cellaring.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This tobacco has been described very thoroughly by the previous reviewers, so I will just add my brief $0.02 worth:

5100 is one of my favorite tobaccos and has become my personal standard of reference for matured Virginias. Although I consider myself to be an English/Balkan guy, I probably smoke more 5100 than any other single blend. The sweet, creamy taste keeps me coming back again and again.

Frankly, I don't know what else one could ask for in a tobacco (assuming that you like Virginias in general): 5100 is a quality product w/ a wonderful deep flavor, it is (relatively) cheap, it is readily available and stores and ages remarkably well. What's not to like?

Many have commented on the "ketchup" smell - I have noticed that aroma w/ some of the McClelland stoved blends but I have never had that experience w/ 5100. I can't recommend this fantastic blend strongly enough.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (127)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I buy this tobacco in 1 lb. bulk and smoke about five bowls of it a week. I agree with all the positive comments above. The negative is that it is very one dimensional in flavor, but that mild, Virginia flavor is something to look forward to. As Inquisitor does above, I mix ten pinches of 5100 with 1 pinch of McClelland Perique to boost the flavor. I put it in an old McClelland tin with the plastic top and give it a few shakes. Both tobaccos are of a similar cut and blend very well. The result is an outstanding smoke. I recommend Red Cake to the Virginia lover, and I highly recommend Red Cake/Perique to one and all. Paddy. __________________________________________________ 9/22/03 To ten parts #5100, add one part McClelland Perique, one part McClelland Latakia and one part McClelland Oriental. It compares favorably to Stratford, Three Friars and Bayou Morning. Absolutely scrumptious.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

AH!!! the classic bulk Virginia. This stuff is becoming something of a legend. It deserves it. Although there are other Viginias out there that are better- none of them come with this price tag. The blend is indeed very similiar to Red Ribbon, but with less complexity- but whose complaining at a bulk price? This blend has got to be aged to truly experience it. Afterwords however this tobacco is very tasty. It reminds me of a campfire- all warm and toasty, with a richness that only comes from good Virginia tobaccos. You can't go wrong here- go and get some!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A fully rubbed out blend that results in wide ribbons of reddish VAs intermixed with < 5% golden. The pouch aroma is sweet with just a hint of the typical McClelland vinegar. However, that never bothered me even when stronger in some of their other blends. From packing to the last puff, this is an effortless smoke that needs little attention. Smokes evenly and without bite or a wet heel. The cool, sweet, creamy smoke is consistent from bowl to bowl and within a bowl but lacks much complexity. A good smoke, but I find some of the others in McClelland's 2000 series much more interesting. However, although some may feel it's boring, I can still enjoy it as as all day smoke. VA fans, give it a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Is there anything more fickle than pipe tobacco or a pipe smoker? I purchased some of this a few months ago based on reviews from some people with which I seem to share common tastes. Upon opening my package I was met with an aroma that left me...well queasy. My first pipeful did nothing to remedy this situation. It actually made me a bit ill. The following two pipefuls only served to convince me that I had made a grave error! Only my modest investment in a 1 lb. bag kept me from tossing the whole mess!

A few weeks later(mainly out of boredom) I decided to give it another shot. WHAT?! I had to go back and make sure that I had loaded my pipe with the right stuff. 5100 provided me with one of the best smokes I've ever experienced. It's been a regular for me ever since.

Was it the tobacco? Was it me? Maybe both. If I had given up I would have missed a nice experience indeed. High recommendations, the second time around!

Nobody has rated this review yet.