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Dark Fragrant encompasses the need to relax. Rich in flavor, smooth in body, a high proportion of black cavendish is seasoned with a pinch of perique to enhance this sublime mixture.

Blended ByKohlhase, Kopp und Co. KG
Blend TypeCavendish Based
ContentsBlack Cavendish, Perique
CutReady Rubbed
Packaging100 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Iwan Ries
Product Image
None Detected
Mild to Medium
Room Note

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DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (839)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The comparisons to McClellands Dark Star are abundant but, I think, invalid. To my taste, Rattray's Black Virginia is closer to Dark Star. This one has the addition of... something... perhaps orientals? The description says so, and there is something there that is not present in Dark Star but I can't make it out. A light dash of perique? If so, it's a VERY light condiment. The virginia tanginess is by far the dominant taste.

This one dries out and holds a light better than either Black Virginia or Dark Star, neither of which I could smoke easily. Consequently, I prefer this one. It's a mellow smoke with not a lot of mystery to it. The virginias develop slightly as the bowl progresses. I'm not one to assign fruit or wood flavors to tobacco as a rule but I'll be danged if this one doesn't remind me of the scent of freshly brewed coffee... er... the taste of this reminds me of the scent of coffee. Weird, ok, but that's the experience I had! I don't drink coffee but I love its aroma, and I suppose aromas create a bit of a taste.

If stoved VA is your thing, this is a must try. I typically only smoke stoved in a blend and this one is stoved in its basic presentation so I find it a bit mild to smoke all the time but it's a good tasting tobacco that performs as it was intended.

13 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2158)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The Virginia is processed into black cavendish and is the star component. It provides a fermented, stewed fruit and dried dark fruit sweetness, is slightly sugary, mildly tangy, and has some earth and grass, plus a touch of sour and wood. There’s a pinch of raisiny, figgy, spicy perique, though the spice is a hair less obvious than the other aspects. I’d say there’s just a little more than a “pinch” of perique present, but it’s a background player just the same. The topping is sweet, but what it is eludes me. The nic-hit is mild. Won’t bite or get harsh. Burns cool and clean at a reasonable pace with a very smooth, lightly creamy, consistently mellow flavor from start to finish. Leaves a little moisture in the bowl, and needs a few relights as the tobacco is mildly moist out of the tin. I don’t recommend drying it, though. Has a pleasant after taste and room note. It’s not a complex blend, but it is an easy going all day smoke.

12 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The Rattray’s line of non-aromatic tobacco for me has been terrific at both ends of the spectrum, but with a big hole in the middle. On one end I like Black Mallory and really like Red Rapparee. On the other end, I am a big fan of HOTW, Marlin Flake and Old Gowrie. But 3 Noggins, Brown Clunee, Accounts etc. have all left me wanting. But what I have discovered is that those blends in the “middle” age very well and that seems to be the difference maker. So I started with Dark Fragrant by purchasing a seven year old tin. The age seems to have made the difference as I get a different tin note than those have described with a new tin. The aged blend gives up the typical scent of a well-aged VaPer. I would find myself in the “No Orientals” camp too. (But I did notice that the description on Smoking Pipes website claims Orientals in the blend) I just get a Virginia Cavendish with a smattering of Perique in the flavor department. I find DF sweet, and very mild. I would not compare the Cavendish here to that found in a typical American style aromatic. There is not a lot of complexity to be found either. That’s not a bad thing, but worth pointing out. Generally I smoke about 85 to 90% of the tobacco in my bowl, but with DF I didn’t like the flavor at the end of the bowl. I have to admit based on some of the reviews that I went into this blend being not very optimistic. My results could be positive due to the age of the tin, but I was pleasantly surprised.

Age When Smoked: 7 years

7 people found this review helpful.

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

Now here is an unusual blend. The stoved virginia is really stoved, almost looks burnt in fact. The darkness of the well rubbed out leaf indicated this blend would pack some punch. Instead, you get a very subdued virginia flavor.

The aroma emanating from the tin was similar to McClelland's Deep Hollow (light and sweet), but this is much more flavorful. There is some sort of casing added to the leaf which, I suppose, makes this an aromatic blend, but the casing was so light it almost passed right by my tongue without notice.

If you want something sweet, light and a little out of the ordinary, try this Rattray offering. I will not rush out to get another tin (it took awhile to get thru the 100 grammer I purchased), but a year or two down the road I'm sure I'll grab another. Delightfully different!

7 people found this review helpful.

Perique Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Perique (150)
Mild Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Presentation is a rubbed out flake of dark brown, with a scattering of medium brown tobacco. Tin note is darkly fruity, plums and other stewed fruit, dried cherries and figs. Delicious. Moisture content is just right and Dark Fragrant takes a match well.

It must be stressed that the black Cavendish in this blend is nothing like what many have come to expect from goopy American aromatics. The Cavendish processed Virginia in this blend are sublime: darkly fruity, deep, very smooth, slightly tangy, with only very subtle background hints of Virginia's grassy and citrusy side. The Perique accentuates the stewed fruit and adds only the slightest hint of pepper. The tang becomes more assertive by mid-bowl, with some deliciously sour notes.

This is a fantastic and interesting blend: a Perique blend for those who don't like VaPers, an old school aromatic for those who don't like aromatics, a black Cavendish blend for those who loathe what is currently marketed as "black Cavendish". Absolutely no bite. Mild but packed with flavor. Very smooth smoking, cool-burning, fruity and rich. Burns cool enough to be an all-day smoke. An excellent crossover blend for aromatic smokers looking to explore further. Dark Fragrant has a lot going for it, but doesn't have quite the complexity level to grab that forth star.

6 people found this review helpful.

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

Rattray - Dark Fragrant.

When I smell this I could be sure it's cased with something, fruit and caramel perhaps? The mix is pretty much black in colour and it's of a good moisture amount, just enough to afford immediate smoking.

The smoke is really tasty, it's again reminiscent of having a fruity/sweet topping. I was expecting the nicotine to be a touch higher when I saw it contains Perique but rather than it increasing the nicotine amount it just gives the smoke a spicy character. It burns well not needing too many re-lights and as it goes it leaves a completely diametric ash to the tobaccos colour, it's a solid white ash. Throughout the flavour stays the same, a sweet black Cavendish lead with a spicy, fruity and sweet background. One of the few/if the only negative is the quantity of smoke in the room this one generates, it smells quite pleasant but it really creates a 'smog' in the room so I think it's a blend to smoke solo rather than in company!

For me that one negative is nowhere near enough to lessen the score, a definite four star blend.

Pipe Used: Peterson Dracula 03

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: G.Q Tobaccos

3 people found this review helpful.

CharatansMake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CharatansMake (18)
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

When I see all the reviews of this tobacco I can´t help to get the impression that DF is a 'love or hate it' tobacco.

Well, I definitley belong to the 'love it' group. Being a proponent of the natural tobacco taste I only like the subtle addition of taste, love it if there is some spiciness involved and prefer the taste of dried fruits. And that is what I find in DF! Furthermore you can find here the rare taste of licorice (I mean a 'natural' taste, not a chemial) and this combination makes DF - in my eyes - to be a very special and unique tobacco that I don`t want to miss anymore.

It burning characteristics are excellent and my tongue never raised a complaint. I prefer to smoke it in chimneys, loosely tamped

highly recommended - 4 stars!!!

Age When Smoked: new

2 people found this review helpful.

DrSchmidt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrSchmidt (2)
Very Mild None Detected Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

This mild blend is best smoked after opening and drying a bit. The flavor develops as it oxidizes. The flavor, while not strong, is pleasant. I wouldn't say it is full bodied by any means. If one is tired of the American cavendish sweetness, this is a nice change. While I tend towards a fuller aged Virginia, I found this an interesting change. I agree with an earlier post, it does leave a 'smog'.

Age When Smoked: 4 days open from purchase date.

Purchased From: The Briar Patch

2 people found this review helpful.

Lochinvar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lochinvar (78)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Of all the Rattray offerings this is at the bottom of the list, at least in my book. This is the only Rattray offering I have ever tried that has gone foul. It combines weak, stringy flavor with harshness and essence of pipe funk. No matter what I smoked this in I found it to be without charm, and I gave it a chance in almost every VA dedicated pipe I own and a few Latakia ones, so strong was my dismay at a Rattray letdown. Were I stuck on a desert island, this would be better than nothing, but would most definitely not be my first, fiftieth, nor five-hundredth choice.

2 people found this review helpful.

Eulenburg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eulenburg (193)
Extremely Mild Extremely Mild Extremely Mild (Flat) Pleasant

The flavour of this very dark, shag-like leaf "hardly registers as smoke". While not exactly in the "warm air" category?there is a very light, English Cavendish-style savouriness to this, particularly on a virgin palate?I would recommend Dark Fragrant to aromatics aficionados who want something very mild and discreet, minus the gunk. Dare I suggest that this might be a good blend for the ladies?

2 people found this review helpful.

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

I really enjoy Dark Fragrant. No, it’s not a 1=1 match for Dark Star, nor should it be promoted as one. But it is a good, darkly stoved Virginia with a whisper of Perique that stands on its own. After a couple charring lights, it fires up and gives the pleasure of raisins, dried figs, and a hint of dried tart cherries. It has a good tang to begin with that develops into a spicy, dark fruit rich sweetness by midpoint. It’s not overly complex, but it is delicious, easy to pack and smoke, completely free of bite, even when pushed, and burns down completely with little moisture. This isn’t a multi-faceted, complex smoke that changes with each puff, but rather a satisfying, easy to smoke blend that hits the right notes for a low effort smoke. 3.5 solid stars.

Pipe Used: Various Briars

Age When Smoked: Fresh and 2 years age

1 person found this review helpful.

GESJr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
GESJr (8)
Very Mild None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

I must admit I had difficulty determining if this was going to truly be a Virginia blend (natural, no topping/casing) or an Aromatic (topping/casing; flavored) with a name including the word 'Fragrant', but after smoking the first half bowl I realize why the name is perfectly fitting for this richly aged Virginia/Perique blend. The Black Virginia Cavendish is a striking experience when opening the can; there's a cool blue/grey hue to the black leaf, but the scent is warm and rich - a hint of vinegar more akin with McClelland Virginias tells me this is a well-aged blend. It doesn't take much to open up in the pipe, and burns so cool it's almost hard to keep lit initially (user error I imagine!). Once stabilized, it continues to burn cool and even. Mild in body, but rich in flavor and scent. It leaves a pleasant, light grassy room note (hence the Fragrant) though it tastes more of rich earth and red wine, with a hint of peat (hence the Dark). I imagine the Perique is portioned on the heavier side to give it that punch of earthy flavor, mellowed out nicely by cool smoking Cavendish. It's a tantalizing experience, and while I'm familiar with Rattray's English blends (highly recommended for Latakia lovers), this is quickly making its way into my Virginia rotations. I'm even considering it as a blend suitable for breaking in new pipes dedicated to natural Virginias. I look forward to aging a few tins to see how the flavors marry with time.

Pipe Used: L. Viprati Bent Billiard

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Cup O Joes

1 person found this review helpful.

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

This is mostly a dark stoved Va, probably from the same base as Rattray's Black Virginia, with a measure of Perique and some additional sweetener.

It has all the dried fruit aromas one would expect of a stoved Va and burns cool, slow and without bite. The Perique is always in evidence, adding plum like flavours and the characteristic pepperiness of Perique. The combination imo works very well. The casing or topping is sweet but unobtrusive.

Sometimes I wonder 'what is the point of this tobacco?' when I encounter something that while well made, adds nothing to what we already have. By contrast, this is one of those tobaccos that makes me think the world is a better place for it being around.

Pipe Used: Lepeltier, Missouri Pride

1 person found this review helpful.

Old Nate Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old Nate (17)
Mild None Detected Medium Tolerable

I really like this blend. It is a bit carmally like a toasted nut with a nice tang. That tang from the Virginia's starts right away and keeps on going till slightly past the half-way point, then the flavor rounds out a bit as the perique settles and the tobacco takes on a less piquant flavor. Like any Virginia, this tobacco should be smoked slowly and you may want to keep in mind it is rather mild, giving way to overzealous puffing which dark fragrant will then bite. But with moderate attention this can and will be avoided. The Virginia tang tends to dissipate when you're on the last third of the bowl and unfortunately the tobacco flavor goes with it.

Despite its mild strength and light body dark fragrant has a slight pungent room note which is a bit organic in a straight raisin way. The tin note also reminds me of sharp raisins and a fruity edge that is very inviting. I just wish more happened during the smoke and a fuller bodied smoke would develop. Overall, a nice blend and worth trying. 2.5 stars from me, but I'll round up and give it a solid 3 stars.

Pipe Used: briar

Age When Smoked: 4 years old

Purchased From: B & M

Similar Blends: Rattray's Black Virginia.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

I normally don't enjoy Cavendish in any form, but my husband had a 100g tin that was several years old that he recommended I try. At first light, I found Dark Fragrant's flavor to be very unpleasant. To my taste it was almost soapy, but not in a Lakeland way. I managed to continue on and the flavor settled down a little bit for the better. DK became more pleasant deeper into the bowl and It doesn't bite and it is somewhat mild. But in the end, even as the flavor improves, the aftertaste that it leaves in my mouth is almost metallic and for that reason it isn't a blend I will be revisiting any time soon.

1 person found this review helpful.

Jakob Kiilerich Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jakob Kiilerich (120)
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

Dark stoved Virginia, very similar to Robert McConnell's Rich Dark Madouro. This one is, on the contrary, actually possible to keep lit.

Dark fragrant has a pungent sweet 'n sour aroma. People around me said that it smelled as if i had never cleaned my pipe, (read: sour) It is indeed hard to smoke this one dry.

The cut is uneven and DF is hard to pack and keep lit, but if you let it dry for some time and smoke it slowly, DF will reward you with an unusual topping that is quite delicious.

A nice change of pace if you like pungent and long for something PUNGENT.

Jakob Kiilerich, Denmark

1 person found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (302)
Mild None Detected Mild Tolerable

Nice, interesting tobacco. Pure dark Virginia, mild in strength, with a tangy?almost sour/sweet?flavour quality. The tobacco seems to be broken flake, in very short crimp cut dark (stoved)pieces. This feature makes it difficult to pack, because you cannot rub it out any further and at least I tend to clog the upper half of the bowl, allowing too much hot air on the lower half. Then, when I tamper it, the lower half tends to clog, making it very hard to get a good, nice draw, thus keeping it lit. Otherwise, the taste is very nice but it can be a bit harsh on the tongue and palate. After a bowlful of Dark Fragrant you?ll need a glass of water! I read somewhere that this is a tobacco for those who wish to settle down with a pipe. Due to the time it takes packing it, keeping it lit, tampering it and relightening, there is no chance of doing anything else but paying attention to the pipe. I enjoyed its zesty flavour, the sharp spiciness, and, at times, the mellow sweetness it achieves. However, IMO, it is too difficult a tobacco to deal with (i.e., the exact opposite of Golden Sliced).

1 person found this review helpful.

Noorrmm Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Noorrmm (193)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Another old favorite, brought back to life by K&C. It's uniformly dark, smells almost like raisins or undried figs, and a bit too moist for me as-is. A bit of airing out, a bit of rubbing (I think it is matured in cakes, then rubbed out), and it lighs well. It burns cool and reasonably dry, but does need more than the occasional relight. The flavor is similar ro he aroma, sweet and full bodied, but fairly simple. It was nearly a twin of McConnells Maduro, as I recall, and I smoked them interchangeably. I got a few complaints at work, but much less than my Latakia blends.

1 person found this review helpful.

Greekpipesmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Greekpipesmoker (153)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

The uncommon combination of this blend triggered me to purchase a tin.once the tin pops up a sweet plumy and figs aroma comes out.the blend is as dark as it can be with some moisture.i noticed that drying is tonning down the flavours.packing and lighting is easy with some relights needed through the process.while smoking the flavours are simple and natural.the cavendish style virginias are in the foreground being sweet,grassy,with dark fruits and and some sour notes.the perique adds some wonderfull notes in the backround offering some plum and fig notes.rarelly some spices and sour notes are also detected.generally the combination is nice simple and natural though not something unique.burns medium speed and medium hot not to perfect ash with some moisture being created at the end of the chance of tongue bite.the room note is pleasant and the nicotine level can be an all day smoke.i would not name it as a light aromatic.genarally this is a simple and decent blend.

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Nobody has rated this review yet.

½ bowl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
½ bowl (99)
Mild None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

The overall taste is dark prune, colored by something almost zesty, like lemon grass. Prune, prune, and more prune -- all the way to the bottom of the bowl. The gentle but unmistakeable sweetness, somewhere in the brown sugar/molasses family, is nicely balanced by the shadowy lemon taste; but the dark prune taste is, well, somewhat fatiguing. For me, a small bowl now and then is quite sufficient. I give it 2 stars because it's not for everybody -- but it's not a bad blend.

If I had my say about the "blend type", I would create a new category: Stoved Virginia. It's sufficiently unlike other types of Virginia used as the foundation in pipe blends.

Age When Smoked: 5 yrs. in the tin.

Similar Blends: Esoterica Tobacciana Kingsbridge ...and perhaps just a touch better.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

steppx Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
steppx (152)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

An old fashioned blend. There was once a number of smokes one could find in this category. Now this may be the only one. Its mostly a dark almost black Cavendish virginia, with a small pinch of Perique. There is a very very mild sweet add to it, but its hard to know quite what it is. But it IS VERY mild indeed. Its a very seductive smoke and it takes a few bowls to start to really appreciate just how good this blend is. It is mild in the nic dept, but it does have some. Enough to keep you interested. A fine unusual all day smoke. Im a big fan of it. 3 and a half stars.

Purchased From: 4noggins

Nobody has rated this review yet.

L'Italiano Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
L'Italiano (170)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

Excellent original smoking mixture: Black Cavendish and Perique. This is a natural aromatic blend. No flavoring at all. Black Cavendish is pretty natural, toasted, unflavored. Only sugar is added with probably a very light casing. All in all it can be considered a natural unflavored Black Cavendish, tipically Scottish. Perique is strongly present and not only a pinch. There is a lot of Perique in the blend and you can taste it from the beginning to the end. Properly this mixture could also be considered a Perique mixture. Original idea, original taste, original mixture. Just right. I would say almost perfect (maybe adding a touch of Virginia?). Finally, in my personal rating system (from 1 to 10) my score is 9 and three and a half stars .

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I really enjoyed the sample of this that I tried. There are many comparisons to Dark Star in the reviews and I think it an apt comparison as both are stoved black blends that seemingly feature the Virginia leaf. I am assuming the Cavendish used is of Virginia.

I love Dark Star, but one thing about it is that it is extremely monotone. Which is fine if you like the tone, which I do. It is a very, naturally, sweet tasting tobacco. DF also is sweet, but to my tastes, offers a little more complexity and makes it a more interesting smoke. Perhaps it is just the pinch of perique adding a bit of spice. There also seems to be something else that I thought was Turkish/oriental. I don't see it listed in the contents above, but in any case, there is a welcome touch of sour that compliments both the sweetness in this one.

As to performance, it performs well, particularly for a stoved blend. Sometimes these types of blends are real buggers to light and maintain combustion. I had no problems smoking this down to ash from the initial light. This one will not bite at all; another benefit of this type of tobacco processing.

It is very good and probably deserves four stars, but I will leave it at three for now until I am able to smoke a larger quantity of the blend. I have a tin of this in the cellar gaining age as I type.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bluesmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bluesmoke (75)
Mild None Detected Very Mild Pleasant

I found this to be quite a subdued mixture. The VAs were flat, the perique overpowering and the general feel we weakness, timidity, nothing bold about this at all. Sometimes this is okay, but I was In the mood to be grabbed in some way and even if it were to be a mellow day for me there was not much to cling to but the pepper of the perique. I wonder if the idea of cav and perique is even a good idea? Oh well, to each his own...we like what we like. BBMF

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Granny Smith Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Granny Smith (25)
Extremely Mild Very Mild Very Mild Very Pleasant

The pouch aroma reminded me of a traditional Christmas cake and the tobacco came out with a moisture level that was just right. Packed into my pipe, a forty year old Dunhill by the way, it lit easily and kept alight through the entire bowl. I fount it very mild and lacking in any distinct taste, though there was a hint of rum. It does smoke well though I found a lot of moisture in my bowl which meant that I was getting those gurgling noises towards the end of the bowl. Still I may have smoked it too quickly as I prefer a stronger smoke. This is a pretty good tobacco but not strong enough for me, nor did I detect much flavour.

Pipe Used: Dunhill

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From: G & Q Tobaccos

Nobody has rated this review yet.

oldcodger Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
oldcodger (71)
Mild Very Mild Mild Pleasant

Rattray's Dark Fragrant is a very pleasant tobacco for those who enjoy blackened, cavendish treated Virginias. The downside of Dark Fragrant is that it lacks complexity and becomes a bit boring in the course of smoking a full pipe.

This tobacco is slightly sweetened in addition to the Virginia sweetness. The room note is a very pleasant natural tobacco smell that will offend only the most demanding non smokers.

The perique note is subdued, although there is enough there to rule out smoking by the perique haters. Based on an earlier top description which mentioned orientals, the previous reviews include many objections to listing this as a component. These reviewers were correct. This is a darkened Virginia with just a tab of perique, no oriental included.

The ribbon cut is fine with me. I do prefer to dry this out a bit by opening the can about three days before I start smoking it.

I have given Dark Fragrant only two stars. Actually I could go with three stars in terms of the way that I smoke it--only a half pipe full at a time. That way I don't tire of its simplicity.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RusticAuthor Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RusticAuthor (5)
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

This blend was a very pleasant surprise for me. I actually purchased it by mistake, confusing it with Sweet Fragrant. When I opened the tin, I was disappointed by the aroma, which I can only describe as sour molasses (I can understand why a prior reviewer described the tin aroma as "sloes jam and vinegar"). The appearance is nothing special, being an almost uniform dark brown. On the plus side (for me), the tobacco is moist. The tobacco feels slightly, but not unpleasantly, tacky. I didn't dry it before lighting it. It took a bit longer to get a good charring light, but it stayed lit thereafter, with judicious tamping.

The surprise came when I took my first puff. This is an exceptionally smooth (no bite) and mild (no detectable nicotine for me) blend. It has a mild toasty sweet flavor which lasts from beginning to end. The sweetness is probably due (at least in part) to some form of sugar casing, but I can detect no flavored topping. Like another reviewer, I don't understand why this is called "Fragrant", which would seem to suggest an aromatic. Nonetheless, this is a top notch tobacco, which has a permanent place in my rotation. Highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RyeWhiskey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RyeWhiskey (43)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Tin note is nice, like raisins and fruitcakes. The tobacco is very dark, and looks like little ribbons with waves. Very nice looking and aroma wise. Not much nicotine, smokes very smooth and mild. I really wanted to like this alot, it has a very nice appeal, but alas, it is just so mellow you forget about it after awhile and about mid-way through a big bowl, you wonder why you didn't pack one of the more livlier blends you have.

It really does have some moments but not as many as you'd like for the price of the tin. It doesn't give off to much perique either so don't think you are going to get a spice on the tongue alot, you won't. Not bad, but not great, though good effort for nice looking tobacco.

Pipe Used: Savenelli

Age When Smoked: 1yr

Purchased From: Jrs

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Steden Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Steden (94)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

Dark rather than fragrant.... in the can it smells of sloes jam and vinegar, once lit it smokes smooth and cool with a mild sweet-sour taste. I don't mind for mildness, at least when there are fine subtelties to caught with patience, but this one is too wispy: just an homeopathic dosage of Perique over a flavourless stoved Virginia, neverless it leaves a fusty sillage in the air and a sour ghost in the pipe. Not really bad, simply yawner.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

If you associate maduro or black tobacco with strong flavors and a nicotine hit, then think again regarding Dark Fragrant. This is a very mild and smooth smoke, perhaps too mild for those looking for the robust flavors of a VaPer blend. Although not an aromatic like many “black tobaccos” on the market today, this does have a nice aroma of raisins and spice in the tin. On opening I find the contents too moist for my liking, and a day of drying improves DF in my opinion. It is a short and wide ribbon cut which packs easily and stays lit nicely, burning to a dry grey ash. DF is cool, smooth and never bites. It has very mild flavors of raisin, spice, and a very subtle sweetness. Clearly DF is for the sensitive palette. It is not very complex, but in my experience a “top shelf” tobacco. A unique mixture and smoke!

Update: I smoked several bowls prior to this update in large bowl pipes. Today I tried it in a smaller group #4 size and I found DF more flavorful. I am not sure pipe bowl size is a factor, but is something to be aware of.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tom Servo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tom Servo (58)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

The tin aroma is at first like sweet, warm prune Danish. The aromas of green hay, toasted flavors (coffee), sweet & sour notes, whole wheat toast, dried fruit, and autumn leaves. The sparsely used Perique adds a ghostly, distant, earthy scent all but lost behind the other prevailing aromas The aroma is rounded, soft and balanced. Very pleasant indeed.

Easy packing, lights and burns very well.

Less complex on the palate, but still nicely balanced. Warm Virginia flavors, nutty toasted notes, dry piles of leaves, and black pepper. The Perique, even in this small measure, plays a small (but noticeable) part of the whole. Light but rich tobacco, quality leaf is obvious, no flavoring just “dark, fragrant” stoved Virginia with a pinch of Perique.

Delicious toasty Virginias, warm edible flavors. Perhaps a bit too subtle, but stoved tobaccos are by nature lighter and milder. I think this blend speaks of quality, masterful blending, and wonderful flavors, unfortunately it just doesn't speak quite loud enough. I really like this stuff, an easy smoke, but it could definitely benefit from a little more gusto - flavor-wise.

3½ Stars

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Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (320)
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant

This is quality stuff. Naturally sweet Virginia taste ( from the Black Cavendish ?) , mellow, no bite, no gurgle, burns slow, I like it. I don't find the Perique or Orientals and I don't know why it's called "Fragrant". Don't think you are getting an aromatic, just that good old time tobacco scent. I noticed this mellowed out even more after opening the tin and letting it rest a few weeks. I'll keep this around, nice in a cob. Update: If you want to taste any Perique you need to stoke it up, slow sip it and it's hard to taste the Perique. Also, keep this well tamped or it will go out.

Updated 9/24/11- I'm on my second tin of this and it has an occasional place in my rotation. I remains very mild with NO bite. I actually like something stronger for my initial hit of "N" in the morning, but it can work. I find it a great "on the go" tobacco, where you don't have the time to sit and contemplate the complexity, which there isn't any. I also like it later in the day when maybe I've abused my tongue, this one will get you through the smoke. That said, it provides a very natural sweet smoke with a very pleasant aroma, without clouds of smoke, I think this would be a good choice for smoking in public ( not cloying).

Updated 11/15/11 -Ok, call me crazy, or maybe my taste is shot but I was smoking a bowl of some SG's FVF and as I slow sipped the first 1/3 of the bowl I thought I had loaded the wrong tobacco. The FVF tasted exactly like Rattrays D&F, I know, it's not even the same makeup but I couldn't tell them apart. The FVF went on to develop into a much different smoke but I had to put this out there. I understand the references also to McC's Dark Star, flavors are similar. I have really grown to like D&F.

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


First: either my tin is mislabeled, the components have changed since 2005 (my tin) or the top description is wrong. My bottom label reads "Black Virginia Blend W/Perique". I suppose Virginia tobacco can be cavendish processed, but usually once that is done, it is identified as such. Orientals? huh.. none detected in taste or by label.

It's not BAD, just boring. The most interesting aspect of it is the unique ability of self-extinguishing, sort of like Indiana cigarettes. I can smoke most blends to the bottom with 1 or 2 lights, not this.

Taste-wise, yeah, probably cavendish. Drug store blend fullness and depth Chop it finer, you get Borkum Riff. Perique? No. My mouth and throat prickle at its presence. Too bad, because I like the taste of perique. I would have endured the prickle for a taste of it.

Rattray's offers some truly fine VA blends, and it was probably why I bought this to begin with. This is bowlshit. I'm putting the remaining 50g in my kitchen to extinguish grease fires.

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Tripjoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tripjoker (65)
Extremely Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

This review comes after smoking the better part of a 100 gram tin that has been in my cellar for almost 3 years. So, I know that the tobacco has been aged properly.

The tobacco is beautiful to look at and the tin aroma is delicious. Sadly, that is where the positives end. There was almost no flavor to be found, tat is, if you can keep it lit. Yes, I know, it is fired, but I have smoked many fired tobaccos in my day and find that this one is just downright unburnable most of the time. Not to mention the tongue bite when you do manage to set fire to it.

Not worth the effort in my humble opinion. Stay away unless light tobaccos make you light headed. Then, this may be your answer.

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

Second 100grms can of DF, the first was five or more years ago.

I will save You all from my "technical" report, and cut this review my shortest.

DF is surely a twin of Mc Connel's Maduro, I dare say it's the same blend minus the rhum topping.

I like quite much the sweet tongue this quasi black mild unsweetened Black Cavendish plus tiny Perique leaves, and learned how to manage the puffin' rythm in order to avoid hot & steamy smoke and the palate scorched.

Everything is mild in DG, so I do simply consider it as a pleasant morning smoke, or a change of pace from my more robust blends.

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

this is very good but i would not go so far as to rate it as good as Dark Star. it has a natural sweet flavor, packs easily due to being fully rubbed out, lights and burns well, and has a fair room note. i will smoke the tin completely to the end but i am not sure it is one i will seek out again.

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PipePaladin Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipePaladin (78)
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable

That one was different! The casing must involve some cane sugars / molasses if I am not mistaken. A good smoke for those that like some orientals and some toping as well! I tasted a sampler and I can say that blend is in my list!

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

I've had this tin of dark Fragrant sitting on my shelf for about 3 years. I decided I needed to open it and give it a go.

Dark, moist (for VAs) tobaccos and a dried fruit aroma greeted me from the opening. The fruit wasn't specific to me, but it recalled plum more than raisin, and was muted. Stoved, fermented and aged is what my nose really seemed to sense.

The tobacco packed, lit and burned well, but it was a very damp smoke for me. The flavor was fine in my opinion - nice virginias and solid notes from the dark tobacco. I've always loved stoved VA, and this was no disappointment.The fruit aroma didn't really carry over onto my palate or the room smoke. The ladies and gents at the bar I frequent also found the smoke unobjectionable.

I'll gladly keep a tin of this about. I may let it set open a bit to lessen the moisture and see if I can attain a drier smoke than the ones I got from taste-testing. I'll need to grab a tin of Dark Star and some other stoved VA-based blends before updating this review.

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

An interesting tobacco... Dark with some lighter specks, with a sweet caramelized plum smell. A bit moist, but nothing to woryr about. When you light it up correctly, it goes on for a long time.

It is quite delicate, yet rather tasty: a sweet, and at times slightly sour, taste, and no tonguebite. It can be a bit watery and light at times, but it's OK.

Not the most complex of tobaccos, and it can grow a bit boring after a while, but I find it definitely better than Rattray's own Black Virginia (compared to which, Dark Fragrant seems more "cavendishized"). Tastier, and better behaving.

I don't know if I will buy more of it (it takes me long to finish 100g of it, since I usually prefer other kinds of tobacco), but I can't say it was an unpleasant experience... and my wife loves the room note!

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Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (127)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Black and dark brown ribbons. I had thoroughly dried out the tobacco before smoking. It packed and burned well. There is the very subtle flavor of dark pressed English flake lurking in the background. However, this tobacco offers more of a smoking sensation rather than outright flavor. I think the Va. flavor has been hammered out of this tobacco in the processing. Toward the bottom half of the bowl it smooths out very nicely. I will have little difficulty finishing the tin, but I will not be keeping DF on hand. Paddy.

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NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (286)
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

Upon opening the tin, you find a dark VA with a slight raisin aroma. This taste comes thru mildly the same but is overshadowed by the VAs and results in cool, mild smoke with no hint of a bite. Since it's a ribbon cut as compared to the flakes that I normally smoke, I find that it burns rather quickly but not hot at all. Pack it tighly to avoid relights. However, even by trying varying bowl sizes and air drying some of the tin , I could not eliminate the wetness @ the bottom of the bowl. Overall, an unusual VA blend with little change in taste throughout the smoke that you might enjoy.

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