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Iwan Ries

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Virginia Tobacco pressed as a broken flake following the tradition of Charles Rattray . A spicy yet noble Tobacco with cool characteristics and a hint of subdued sweetness .

BrandRattray
Blended ByKohlhase, Kopp und Co. KG
Blend TypeVirginia/Perique
ContentsKentucky, Perique, Virginia
FlavoringNone
CutBroken Flake
Packaging50g Tin, 4oz Tin, Bulk
CountryDE
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Iwan Ries
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Strength
Medium
Flavoring
None Detected
Taste
Medium
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable

Favorite Of 30 Users

3.5
219 reviews
Reviews
4 star:
129
3 star:
63
2 star:
25
1 star:
2
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pipenewbie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipenewbie (5)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I read many of the glowing reviews about Old Gowrie and wondered if this tobacco was as good as most everyone thought. I received my order in the mail and immediately had to dodge questions from the wife (you think I ordered porn or something;).

So far in my piping experience I have leaned heavily to the English mixtures: Renaissance, British Woods, EMP, and Blackpoint. The tin aroma was heavenly. The sweet smell from OG was a welcome change. Some people describe it as grassy, but I noticed a more fruity character. It was more savory sweet and fruity instead of dessert-like--imagine a savory dish made with figs and raisins with a touch of some aromatic herbs like tarragon and lavender. The smoke was the same. Savory-sweet, smooth, and fragrant. I find one bowl not quite enough! It fits into any time of the day or night. Also it is quite good no matter the weather. I find that heavier mixtures like BW and Blackpoint hit their flavor/aroma peak in cooler temps, but OG stays constant no matter if it is summer or winter.

I like OG so much that I wonder about how I would enjoy "the older brother" Marlin Flake? I don't really like nicotine content any higher than OG.

Old Gowrie is a wonderful, comfortable, and satisfying smoke. Highly recommended! It is a mainstay in my cabinet.

=UPDATE= OG was my first foray into straight VA's and I loved it. After having several other straight VA's tobaccos since then, I have come to appreciate OG even more!!!

12 people found this review helpful.

Sinister Topiary Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sinister Topiary (74)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

You can't get Ratray in Canada so I've been unable to confirm this blender's high reputation for myself, so on a recent trip to NYC I acquired a tin of OG.

I tried it in various pipes, but it only really came alive for me in a large bowl, in my case an Italian pot. It seems to need a lot of room to breathe to release its flavors.

The hint of perique really is just a hint, a deftly applied pinch that for once functions as a condiment should, one that simultaneously enhances the delicately sweet virgnia while gently smoothing its edges with a whisper of coolness and spice, but not enough for it to be considered a real vaper.

As others have mentioned you can puff it hard without biting, which is a nice feature, but you'll miss the magic of this blend that way. Slowing the rhythm down will reveal an incredible and subtle nuance, like bringing one of those "magic eye" 3D pictures into focus when you look at it just right. I even found myself naturally exhaling the smoke through my nostrils, which I don't usually do with virginias. Also, the moisture level out of the tin is ok, but I prefer to let it dry out a little.

This is a truly lovely mild-to-medium virginia, one of the best I've come across. I think this should be a must-try for any virginia lover. I will definitely be checking out more Ratray blends.

7 people found this review helpful.

Skando Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skando (155)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

OG: like HOTW, several years have passed from my last encounter, and the same way I'm wondering why... OG is another keeper !

As per the K&K site, OG share the same components of HOTW, of course in other proportions. Its strength is one notch (or two) below HOTW, even K&K puts them in the same scale degree... I feel HOTW being fruity, while OG is nutty. As HOTW may be a bit sharp, OG is absolutely mellow.

OG is delivering me the most soft & velvety smoke I've ever experienced, with the very faintest hidden tones of vanilla and nuts; just a whiff of vinegar to the nostrils. A pure heavenly pleasure !

Well, the most reasonable thing I can do is to alternate the two blends !

My highest reccomendations.

7 people found this review helpful.

Tantric Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tantric (263)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I find this to be one the best Virginia tobaccos, even in its new version (never tried the Danish experiment, but managed to try the original Perth blend). It is a "simple" tobacco in the sense it does not try to be anything else...but good smoking tobacco.

Unlike other virginias (most notably Dunhill's Light Flake or G. Smith & Son's Old London 100% Virginia), it does not have a strong tangy-sweet or spicy aroma. There is a subdued oatish flavour that gradually changes into something more complex, though it never reaches the ecehlons of, say, Marlin Flake or even Brown Clunee (another favourite).

It is easy to pack in almost any type of pipe and I find it easy to light. It burns slowly and after the initial "harshness" of many virginias, it becomes very smooth. At first it may seem unobtrusive, so that you my be writing or reading whilst somking it. However, it eventually grows on you, to the extent that without even noticing, you suddenly find yourself completely taken in by the smoking experience and leaving aside whatever you were doing.

It produces a dull grey ash and it leaves the pipe bowl clean, and fresh. If smoked too quickly, it may get your tongue, but not too bad. It does have a relaxing effect. Perhaps it is not suitable for all day smoking, but I find it a perfect companion for the evening, and more so for that particular moment when the kids and the wife have gone to bed, and you are left alone, with the dog at your feet.

Highly recommended!

6 people found this review helpful.

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

Opened the tin. Nothng really jumped out at me. The smell? I liked it. Loaded up a bowl. It was good. No bite, Burnt well. Would smoke a bowl every so often. Didn't think much about it, but enjoyed it well enough. The next time. Hmmm. the tin is empty. Ordered more. Same thing. Again and again. I guess I smoke Old G more than anything else and hadn't even realized it. My favorite? Hmmm, I guess it is.

Pipe Used: 5o old briars

Age When Smoked: Fresh from the tin

Purchased From: Pipes and Cigars

Similar Blends: Other Vapers, but find myself smoking Old Gowrie more all the time..

4 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (513)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I find Rattray's blend offerings to be a real hit or miss for me with not much in-between Old Gowrie is a hit for me. OG, one of the “big three” Virginia offerings from Rattray's greets then nose with a typical Virginia smell of hay and figs and a little something extra. I tend to like my tobacco dry, so OG requires a little bit of dry time for me, but many will find it ready to smoke right out of the tin. The broken flakes show off Rattray's (aka K&K) use of high quality leaf. I have enjoyed it with the flakes kept largely intact and rubbed out and prefer the latter. With the exception that they both are pipe tobaccos, I find no comparison to Frog on the Town whatsoever as commented on below. Old Gowie smokes slowly and the addition of the Kentucky adds that little bit depth that some VaPers lack. With that said, I find OG to be medium in strength. I tend to be a bit of a puffer, but thankfully, it isn't a problem as OG is a"forgiving" blend. OG ages wonderfully and all of the flavors deepen, and while sweeter with age, the Kentucky tends to balance out the sweetness verses Marlin Flake. This is a very good blend and worth a few spots in the cellar, especially if you find Marlin to be too sweet. Three and a half stars.

3 people found this review helpful.

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

Excellent Virginia! Fill a bowl, let it dry about 20 minutes or so and light 'em up! Just don't puff hard looking for a big flavor. Sit back, relax with a good book and a beverage, and go slow. Because it is a rubbed out flake it takes a fair amount of time to get through a bowl. Set the pipe down if it gets hot. No penalty for re-lights. It just gets better each time.

3 people found this review helpful.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

HOTW light. A nice, mellow VA with some support from the perique and the Kentucky. Not really a standout in my mind. VAs are not my favorite so I was not very excited about this mild blend. Most of the Rattray Vas taste very similar to me and just vary in strength. I say "eh."

2 people found this review helpful.

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

I prefer the mild-medium strength virginias. (Fits better to my taste, maybe 'cause i use mostly non filtered pipes.) It is a mild-medium, so strenght for me: 4/4

I'm not a big aromatic fan, especially do not like strong toppings on VA blends. This baccy gives the sweet natural VA line with a good balanced perique support. (Pq is absolutely detectable from the beginning till the end of the bowl.) Flavoring and taste: 4/4

I think the room note should be a discrete pure pipe-tobacco smell. Smokable even in a party. 3/4

A nice mild va/per smoke. 4 stars.

2 people found this review helpful.

meerkat Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
meerkat (64)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I recently tried three of the Virginia blends (Marlin Flake, Hal O' The Wynd and Old Gowrie) from Rattray as they tend to get lumped together and I wanted to know what seperated them.

OG was right in the middle for me in terms of strength and preference.

Virginia, Kentucky, Perique all feel as though they're present and in that order, I'd say. Flavour/aroma was of dusty books and buttered toast.

Not as strong or malty-sweet as Hal not as tangy or steamy-soft as MF.

A good tobacco which will probably bring me back at some point but I'd choose HOTW over it. For whatever that's worth.

2 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (202)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Rattray Old Gowrie . The unlit mixture is resplendent , nice robust/long pieces , a perfect moistness and all a medium Brown colour . Due to the fabulous condition of the unlit Tobacco it attests that I thought lighting up would be easy , it is super to get lit ! Once the bowl is going I find it a rare occasion that it necessitates a re-light , unless it is left to long without a draw . That said , the actual burn is a very even one and very consistent . Now , the Smoke itself , lovely , all along I get a fantastic medium temperature which only gives a very slight bite if I pull the hell out of it . Flavour now , if you like a Virginia/Perique blend then this is the Tobacco for you ! It is actually quite fair in the spread of the two Tobaccos , with them both being very noticeable . The Virginia "Hay" note is very full to the taste whilst there is also the great piquancy from the Perique . Vitamin N next , very satisfying , maybe a little too much for a novice , albeit perfect if N is what is desired ! The final good point is the room note , very much as you would expect from the included Tobacco's however I find it to be a light weight one , with that in mind it gives a little more freedom as to where you Smoke it !!

Pipe Used: Peterson Sandblast Sherlock Homes Baskerville

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Smoke King

1 person found this review helpful.

the_german Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_german (204)
★★★☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Checking out a 'baccy store while visiting friends, I picked up a tin of Old Gowrie; I was curious and wanted something with lots of VA. Opening the tin, the leaf comes as a broken flake, a bit remeniscent of some MacBaren offerings. A slight orange sauce seems to be present, but the tin aroma is dominated by mature VA goodness, sweet and malty. Stuffing is made easy by the cut, and the smoke starts out a bit dry in flavour, but picks up in both sweetness and strength throughout the bowl with a little grassiness in there in the last quarter. This being a pure VA (I can't make out any Perique in there, and the sticker on the back of the tin does not mention it either), there is some condensation during the smoke, but that is easily taken care of. This is a single-match smoke for me, and I am left with only ashes at the end. Beautiful smoke which I don't hesitate to recommend for the VA crowd, and will probably buy again.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: Fresh from new tin

Purchased From: Appelhans, Lingen, Germany

1 person found this review helpful.

Nicotiana_rustica Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nicotiana_rustica (13)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

one of my favorite tobaccos. A stunning Virginia, complex, relatively strong with a hint of perique. Wonderful smell, divine taste...citrusy, earthy. Absolute must try for fans of Virginias. I have tried Marlin Flake and I enjoy Marlin Flake as well but this is just a bitt better for me.

Similar Blends: MARLIN FLAKE.

1 person found this review helpful.

renwardhoop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
renwardhoop (59)
★☆☆☆
Extremely Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

My son is trying to get me off aromatics.

I thought this was going to be some deep, dark, rich blend with a satisfing taste throughout the bowl.

After one bowl in my old savinelli and another in a corn cob (as a last resort) I can report to these battered old taste buds that this blend is none of the things above.

It's gotta be me. It's gotta be.

My last dalliance with Rattrays I think.

Pipe Used: savinelli, CC

Age When Smoked: ye olde/new

Purchased From: sample from son

1 person found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (610)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Slightly moist out of the tin, but it's not enough to cause much of a problem. The Virginias are naturally sweet and grassy with a slight tangy hit. The Kentucky adds some nutty flavor and a little strength. The perique is a necessary condiment, adding a mild spice, raisin, and fig taste. Here and there I get the sense of dried fruit, and a chocolate note or two along the way. Not very complex, but that shouldn't be a "must" because there's tons of complex mixtures on the market when you need them. Thought it's been a while since I've had any of it, there were days I'd smoke it a few times, and never got tired of it. For a medium strength VaPer, I found it hard to beat.

1 person found this review helpful.

SmokeDawg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SmokeDawg (52)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Finally ready for a review. I was excited about this tin but the first several bowls were a disappointment. I couldnt figure out what everyone else was liking about it. I put it away to come back to later. I now see how wet this blend is right out of the 3.5 oz tin, and i dont know why i didnt see that before. Its like soggy moss and reminded me of seaweed. I finally had the time to space it out on paper and let it air out all morning. NOW I get it. Great flavor combo of that sweet va rattray flavor with just a touch of per to give it a subtle pop. Slow burning. Tasty. A winner! Im looking forward to future bowls.

March 24, 2014 addition to my review. Old Gowrie has become one of my favorite blends and found a way into my permenant rotation. The unique flavor packs a punch and accompanies a decent nick kick. Love it!

1 person found this review helpful.

Judge Adams Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Judge Adams (16)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The OG is easy to overlook. It is, after all, only a straight, dark Virginia ready rubbed in a little yellow can. Its oaty tobacco flavor is probably no fancier than the shag smoked by our founding fathers. Yet, like a faithful friend, its very ordinariness makes it extraordinary. It's lovely for a contemplative walk in any season. It glows quitely by your side as you read your new book. Guests walk into your room but no one says anything about it. OG is for you alone without drawing praise or complaints from anyone else. And,as the early edition of Rattray advertising claims, it has a strangely tranquilizing effect. You will stray. You will try bolder, more exotic blends, or some burley jacked up with syrups or sugars. And, when you and your tongue are worn out OG will be there, in the yellow can,ready for you.

1 person found this review helpful.

rramstad Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rramstad (115)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

My experience with this blend is limited, but this is very very fine VA tobacco, with lots of good flavor, no bite to speak of, and high quality without a lot of dust or stems or whatnot.

I put it right up there with the best.

UPDATE Mar 2012 I have smoked a good amount of this over the last year or so and it continues to impress. It really sings in the right pipe. Well worth learning how to smoke it. Sweet and spicy, will nip if hot or over puffed.

1 person found this review helpful.

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

Very good virginia tobacco indeed. Somewhat less spicy than its 'brother' HOTW but incredibly nice smell and very enjoyable taste. Like other Rattray's, also this blend is of top quality tobacco with excellent smoking behaviour.

1 person found this review helpful.

Coskun Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Coskun (23)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is my favorite tobacoo all times...Quality leaf of virginia...Package is fine but its needs to dry 1-2 hours...

Uniq and great taste...Everything is perfect for me...

No need to say too much if you are virginia fans this tobacco best of the best...

1 person found this review helpful.

Morgoth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Morgoth (22)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Old Gowrie is a truly excellent VaPer. Mild to medium sweet, with a definite whisper of high grade perique (as avowed by K&K). I wholly favor this blend over Hal O The Wynd...which I find less sweet, and approaching too great in strength.

Highly recommended.

A companion infusion: pint(s) of cold pilsner...Urquell works just fine. I believe its PlzeHský Prazdroj in Czech.

1 person found this review helpful.

Alguhan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Alguhan (140)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

A 4 star tobacco for all times.

I try to dry this blend as much as I can for a fully satisfying smoke. The flavorful and cool smoke is suitible for an every hour and day smoke. I realy enjoy the fine and clean virginia taste with this blend.

Very similar to Hal'o the Wynd, but much more bland. I strongly recommend it for meerschaum users in their meerschaum pipes. Have it for your daily smokes and in your cellar forever!

1 person found this review helpful.

Requiem Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Requiem (36)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Old Gowrie is a awesome virginia blend. Just a bit sweet and very hay like, providing a high quality natural taste. Filling, lighting and burning is very easy.

I prefer to smoke virginias by the morning and on the summer days and Old Gowrie fullfills those roles perfectly.

1 person found this review helpful.

Lochinvar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Lochinvar (71)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Old Glaurung, my favorite Virginia of all, and probably one of the most unique on the market. You have your sweet VA's like McClelland, Astley and Butera, and then you have the floral soap from GAwith and the like. Old Gowrie seems like fresh tobacco to me. All I can think of when opening the tin or smoking it is of fresh mown hay in the sun. As soon as I open a tin I think of bright days in October, with my Dad mowing and baling hay. The smoke itself is satisfying and sturdy, keeping a hay-y, oaty, earthy, sweetness all the bowl through, never cloying or bitter. I find this one far superior to its brothers Marlin Flake and Hal o' the Wynd, and it positively pummels Brown Clunee. Nicotine overload is never a problem. I keep a fair number of tins on hand and it takes well to aging, mellowing and sofenting around the edges (note: for aging the 4oz tall tins are better than the flat metal tin shown above).

1 person found this review helpful.

Dubinthedam Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dubinthedam (133)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Mild Full Pleasant

I give her 4, I love K+K blends (Peterson's, McConnells and Rattray's). It's all been said before. For me it's very similar to Scottish Cake but without the Perique and a little more subtle. I love Marlin Flake and I will make a point of trying HOTW asap...OG is a great baccy for a beginner to access what a good non-aromatic is really like.

1 person found this review helpful.

UncleGar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
UncleGar (108)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

My tin is now nearing the bottom only because I've had to mix this evenly with MB's Burley, resulting in a rather nicer smoke. I fully expected to like OG more than I did; I like light VAs, especially F&T's. Why this is so harsh in my mouth is a mystery. It never settles in and remains astringent and sharp, even in a new and dedicated pipe. Some VAs do that, some don't. Perhaps it's the species of critters that ferment this during the curing that cause the affliction.

At any rate, burley tends to neutralize it, but it also masks VA flavors I like so well. My next stop is Marlin Flake and hope it fares better.

Update 05/05: Refusing to give up on this, I retried in yet another pipe that finally worked well with it, an ugly pigskin pipe with a metal insert. It may have been the tobacco's age, too, but OG finally gained a seat in my VA rotation. Upgraded my recommendation accordingly.

BTW, Marlin Flake became my favorite. HOTW close second.

1 person found this review helpful.

omegapd Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
omegapd (81)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

This review was written for another group:

Received my order from JR in one day- can't beat that, especially since I live in a small town. The Old Gowrie got the best of me and I cracked that tin first. It's a broken flake, per se, but in really long pieces which made it hard to pack right from the tin. The color is typical of the Virginia flakes I like- yellow and tan and should be high in natural sugar content. I fired up a few pipes of the stuff during the day to get a feel for the blend. It came pretty moist and probably should have dried out some first, but it still stayed lit well and didn't add a whole lot of moisture to the smoke. Right now I'm smoking it in an old Linkman's Grabow billiard with screw off stem (like Kaywoodies) that is my Virginia Tester pipe. I rubbed the pieces out fully on a piece of paper instead of just cramming them into the bowl from the tin. My Zippo (yeah, I know- doesn't work with Virginias, but I like the old thing) fired it off with two lights and after about 5 bowls of the stuff today and yesterday, I can't see why this is supposed to be the "must try" of Virginias. The flavor is sort of musty and heavy- nothing like I expected from the light colored leaf. The aroma is excellent though, so thats a plus. I guess I was expecting the light, high, sweet notes that these Lemon Virginias usually give off and can only say I'm disapointed right now. My staple tobacco is Mac Baren VA#1 and while sweetened with sugar, is more up my alley than this stuff. I bought 2 tins each of Old Gowrie and Hal o the Wynd, so one tin will be for ageing regardless...I just hope this open tin changes some when it dries out. I know I'm the minority with this review (see tobaccoreviews.com and the P&T mag about Rattrays) but this tin needs to really "wake" up before I can enjoy it. EW

UPDATE** The tin has been open almost 3 months now and I'll admit it's much better than new. Also, I've learned to pack a bowl and let it sit for an hour or so before smoking and that helps a bunch too.

1 person found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1005)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

This one has entered my top-5 list of all-time favorites. What an exemplary weed! Why I had not gotten around to smoking Old Gowrie before just recently eludes me. Better late than never.

I received a 50g tin not long ago and was anxious to give this classic a try. The moisture content upon opening was quite high. It does not dry out rapidly and sat opened for 48 hours before drying enough for my personal enjoyment.

The tin says this is a "Rubbed Out" Virginia. My definition and Rattray's must vary widely because the mottled chunks were very flake like in appearance and I chose to hand rub the weed further before loading and lighting.

Once packed and lit, it was obvious why so many give OG rave reviews. The taste was cool, clean and invigorating. No tangy smell or taste at all, just smooth and vibrant Virginia. The room note was spectacular too!

If you want a distinctly rich, yet mellow Virginia taste with no bite, Old Gowrie is a great choice for an all day smoke. If I may compare OG to other Rattray's Virginia offerings; it is not at all tangy or bitey like Marlin Flake, not quite as strong as Hal O The Wynd, and not as one dimensional as Brown Clunee. A delightful and a stand alone Virginia -- I must get a dozen or so tins of this stuff for my cellar!

1 person found this review helpful.

Albion1956 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Albion1956 (41)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Full Tolerable

Vade mecum, a book or manual to be carried about, and this tobacco friends has been carried about. In it's day it went to all corners of the empire, stuffed in an old sealskin pouch, rewarding it's owner with the sweet succulent fragrance of aged Virginia's. This tobacco is matured, and the powerfull nose and strenght it omits on the willing participants, engulfs them in haze of pure pleasure. This cannot be compared to FVF, or other Virginia flakes, because the uniqueness of this tobacco make it so. This tobacco has little if any casing, and the flavor is just Virginian. In the form of broken flake, one should heed all Virginia warnings, about incessant puffing, rubbing out to a powder, or other variants. This tobacco does well as is, no effort is required other than packing the bowl and putting fire to it. This smokes well in a Peterson or Dunhill, take your pick, that did not seem to matter. Smoking slow, cool, and easy, as a summer day, just drifting about, not a care in the world, oh yes those were the days. The days when gentleman from Great Britain ruled and their pleasures were brought with them, the power,the presence, the nuances of a greater life that was extolled upon all in their sphere of existence.This was the world of Old Gowrie when it came to be, and it is still, after so many empires have fallen.Witty, sophisticated, enduring, these and other traits in a premium flake make for many enjoyable days ahead, that leaves no dottle, and a delectable aftertaste. Here, Here!

1 person found this review helpful.

Spirit pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Spirit pipe (4)
★★★★
Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The twin brother of 5100 mcclelland but old Gowrie burns better and is less greasy and refined taste.

If you like straight red virginia,go there do not be afraid of Perique or strength kentucky the two are very subtle much softer and less powerful than hal o the wynd. Old Gowrie probably one of the best red virginia easy perique on market

Pipe Used: Savinelli

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I think I'm looking for more in my tobacco. I like rich, varied flavours and to me this is very one-dimensional. It is a nice taste I suppose, but there is nothing standout. This is just more my personal preference than the actual tobacco, but I'm rating this stuff so I have a reference on what to order again.

A lot of people love this, I can appreciate why, but it ain't for me.

Pipe Used: Parker Poker

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Smoke King

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Bonneville Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Bonneville (19)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

A very fine and rich ready-rubbed Virginia flake. Not as full as Marlin Flake but quite full bodied, none the less.

Tin note is a nice yeasty bready sweetness.

Dry it out some and pack it light. It expands as it burns.

Rich and sweet, though not overly so, with a hint of spice. Give it a try.

Pipe Used: Rattray's

Age When Smoked: 6 months

Purchased From: Beehive Cigars, Salt Lake CIty, UT

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Quaffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Quaffer (18)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Very enjoyable tobacco, nice sweet flavor of VA's, almost like pumpkin or something, smokes cool and smooth. Just about all you'd ever want from a VA. Definitely recommended.

Similar Blends: Orlik Tobacco Company A/S - Golden Sliced (Red).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This tobacco changed the way I feel about pipe smoke. It is the portal to all Virginas, easy to smoke, never biting, natural but composite to your nose, consistant through all the bowl.

The best thing after several tins and pipes, is that the flavour is there from beginning to end. I am not much into Perique, but it IS there and it's great.

Would recommend to fill the bowl and leave it there for a good while before lighting.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Punto Oro - Ser Jacopo

Age When Smoked: New

Nobody has rated this review yet.

CTS Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CTS (109)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Excellent pure tobacco flavors. Very well blended. Don't know what this blend "was". It "is". Burns clean and dry through the bowl. Excellent way to understand and appreciate good base tobaccos, particularly the power of perique. 4*.

Pipe Used: Nording Freehand

Age When Smoked: Unknown; at least one month

Purchased From: P&C

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This is very pleasant Virginia tobacco. Yes, there is a touch of Kentucky and perique, but they are in the background. You can get a bit of nose tingle from the perique, but I would nevertheless rate this as a Virginia rather than a VaPer. A pleasant oatish flavor with the natural sweetness of Virginia provides a taste that does not tire the palate. The mellow flavor contrasts with the sharpness of its Rattray sibling HOTW. I prefer Old Gowrie, although I can understand why some would like better the edge of HOTW. The room note is a pleasant, natural tobacco variety. Old Gowrie does not require great care to avoid tongue bite aside from those smokers who are most sensitive to that danger in Virgina mixtures.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

St Paul Guy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
St Paul Guy (1)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

With over 200 reviews already, I doubt I can add anything new about this blend. So instead, I’d like to recommend this tobacco to newer smokers looking to explore the taste of perique. This blend makes it relatively easy to identify what perique brings to the table, and it’s mild enough not to overwhelm. By comparing this to straight Virginias, you’l l be able to identify how perique tastes, and what it adds to a blend. This should make it easier to identify what you like and don’t like as you try more complex blends.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

JohnMA Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JohnMA (12)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Epic! What more do you need in a VaPer?! Just try it. I'm a virginia lover and this is really all you need. Smooth and with a little perique. Sometimes I need a bit more perique but OG is amazing.

Age When Smoked: New, less than a year old tin

Nobody has rated this review yet.

krg1000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
krg1000 (133)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

As others have stated, OG is HOTW's little brother in the Nicotine department. If HOTW is too much for you, definitely get some OG and you will be in heaven. OG is very much the same components as HOTW, but they have managed to lessen the nicotine levels considerably with this fine blend. The components come together very nicely in this blend. It has become one of my favorites that I can get locally here at my B&M. It is a bit moist on the opening of the tin, but some drying time will remedy that nicely. Lights easily and stays lit till the bottom of the bowl. Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Umlilo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Umlilo (5)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I really like this, as others have said a nice cool thick smoke with no bite. I was trying to think how to explain the taste which to me was like a milk coffee with brown sugar type flavour. Others have said nutty and sweet.

It's going to be a favourite!

Pipe Used: Old Gowrie!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (203)
★★★☆
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

This is a very nice blend. The Virginias are outstanding. A little more body and this would be a 4 star blend for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

A rather nice blend that I purchased based on this sites reviews. I think it is almost like Frog Morton's "On the Town" but a little drier. Very enjoyable and provides a nice long smoke with little re-lighting required. The touch of Perique keeps the smoke cooler and reduces the bite.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blue Bayou Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blue Bayou (59)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Easy to pack & keep lit, burns dry, no tongue bite. A good everyday smoke. Nutty and full flavored.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This is one of my all time favorite tobaccos. I am a Virginia lover. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy other styles of tobacco too, but when I want a smoke, 8 times out of 10 I am reaching for a Virginia. In my mind Old Gowrie is everything a Virginia should be. Nice sweet honey hay top note. Burns great, nice aroma, and a nice solid Virginia taste.

One thing I find I like about this tobacco is its resilience when it comes to overheating. Most Virginia's are like high maintenance women, when you treat them nice they are a real treat, but get the smallest thing wrong and they can be very temperamental. For most Virginia's if you don't pack them right, light them right, puff too much, puff too little, they can turn sour and unfulfilling. This is the reason I smoke an English or burley when I am doing something like walking the dog, it doesn't require as close attention. Old Gowrie is different. It seems to me to be very forgiving. When I puff too fast (which I often do) it seems to say "come on big guy, what else do you have?" The smoke gets bolder the faster I puff but not sour, still very pleasant.

I must admit that the Rattray line is not a line of tobaccos that I have explored very much, but based on this gem I will definitely be exploring more of their offerings.

Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ynrozturk Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ynrozturk (40)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

After hearing many good things about this tobacco, I hunted some down, as well as some Hal O the Wynd.

So far, I've been smoking this in a corn cob. I tried it in a few briars, but I seem to get more flavor from a cob - go figure.

The moisture right out of the tin is perfect, absolutely perfect. The broken flakes are wonderful, and upon first sniff I got some hay, some ketchup, some perique. Mouth watering.

This blend is one of the few blends I know that burns all the way to the end of the bowl with no fuss, and it's always a very dry smoke. The tobacco retains it's flavor for 85% of the bowl, so that is also a big plus.

Some people have said that the nicotine was a bit high but I didn't get that at all. Maybe because I've wrestled with Black XXX Rope and lost. So the nicotine here is nothing to be afraid of. I would call it well mannered and normal.

Four stars, no question. I'm a sucker for a good Virginia blend. Can't wait to try it's big brother, too.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Deleted Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Deleted Account (525)
★★★★
Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

This is great quality tobacco that smokes wonderfully. Hal O' the Wynd is stronger in nicotine and flavor, and is less sweet. Marlin flake is equal in strength and flavor, and has the flavor of "cavendish" instead of the burley in this blend. Old Gowrie seems like your typical pleasant virginia blend, but is exceptionally sweet. Some describe it as aromatic in nature and I agree, but I would by no means ever refer to this as aromatic tobacco. It is clearly naturally sweet complimented by a very light sugary topping that has never once seemed unwelcome by me. This blend has a great virginia component similar to our benchmark Orlik Golden, and appears to have a similar perique content. The perique in this blend could not possibly overwhelm a pipe smoker, but is certainly noticable to anyone experienced with perique. The burley comes out distinctly in the blend and I begin to notice a dry burley mouth sensation somewhere in every smoke. Contrasted to Orlik it is very similar in strength and character, but slightly sweeter with the pleasant sensation of burley. An exceptional medium virginia based blend as close to perfection as any blend can attain in my humble opinion.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TW Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TW (25)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

A nicely presented, fairly light-coloured broken flake, which I rub out a bit before filling.

Burns quite slowly and evenly, and is little trouble even in small-bowled clays.

Maybe a little damp straight from the tin for some, personally I find no need to dry it before lighting. The dampness isn't enough to cause tongue-bite.

Taste-wise it's very honest, nicely blanced, undemanding and clean. There's a hint of spice with with the Virginia very much to the fore and the perique adding a little extra depth, tang and zing as you get lower in the bowl. VA is very much the dominant partner, but the Per would be missed if it wasn't there.

I particularly like this in the morning, when I want a tobacco that complements strong French/Italian coffee blends (so no latikia) and without head-spinning levels of nicotine, though it's good at any time of day when I don't want the depth and richness of a full-on English or Balkan blend.

Nicotine is present, but without the kind of kick some of the fuller English blends or stronger VAs have.

My roll-up (Golden Virginia) smoking wife reckons OG has little to no room note at all (though OG has much more flavour than Golden Virginia, or any of the modern cigarette tobaccos). It's a good choice when in the presence of cigarette/mild cigar smokers as they're less likely to complain about the smell.

Maybe not the greatest tobacco in the world, if it were a wine it's more of a more of a good everyday/all-day French Cabernet than a heavy claret, but who would want to drink heavy wines all the time?

Might also make a good introduction to "real" tobacco for aromatic smokers, and a good introduction to this kind of blend to the inexperienced.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TallPuffO'Burley Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TallPuffO'Burley (132)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A wonderful VaPer or rather something in between a VaPer and a straight VA. Perique is light, but still noticeable. I highly recommend it and need to get some more soon.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Capt Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Capt (120)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

I usually like to smoke at least 2 oz before I write a review, but this is an exception. Love at first light! I have been a Va lover for a few years now, and I can't believe it took me that long to try this blend.

Top notch Va that satisfies. Rubs out easy, packs and lights easy with a little dry time. If you are a Va lover like I, please do not wait as long as I did to try this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tobacconists Aprentice Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tobacconists Aprentice (20)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Managed to pick up a tin of this on holiday in Norfolk having heard plenty of good things about it.

The 50g tin contained a rough slighly moist flake with a fine tin-note of mellow fruit, light smokeyness, soft leather, and a vinous quailty.

It rubbed out well and was easy to light and it stayed lit with little or no relighting. The taste was delicious,smooth Virginia tasting rich but not cloying with a spicy/smokey aftertaste. It smoked slowly extending the enjoyment and even at the bottom of the bowl there was no bitterness or bite. It was also an ecconomical smoke leaving next to no dottle..

I was very impressed by this blend, it has near perfect balance of tobaccos so a pipe smoker can enjoy it regardless usual taste preference. A must try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

keisel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
keisel (12)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a perfect all day virginia blend, nothing more, nothing less. It's i can say a blend for people smoking cigarettes and want to take the pipe road.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

A light virginia flavour, pretty light in body. Tastes just like a good virginia, lighter than hal o the wynd. I will buy more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Thbg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Thbg (25)
★★★☆
Very Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

I agree with all the positive comments from other reviewers. This is quality tobacco.

While this is a very mild blend, overall, there is "something" unique to this blend that keeps me coming back that I can not put my finger on.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Not much more can be said about this blend. Classic. Old world style tobacco. Genuine.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

GSTQ Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
GSTQ (31)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

Appearance is a medium to dark brown broken flake. Tin smells akin to a quality fruited cake. Tastes lightly sweet.

Nice sweet smoke, but I prefer its "big brother", Hal O' the Wynd. Old Gowrie lacks the grassy and bakery flavours of HOTW. One could perhaps see OG as an all-day HOTW, but as I don't smoke Virginias all day, or even every day, I will likely not buy another tin of OG. Having said that, Old Gowrie is still a joyful smoke. With all Rattray's, like a fine wine, they benefit from airing.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I've just received a 100g tin of this tobacco. I've been smoking latakia blends for too long, convinced that I had tried everything and I coudn't get surprised. So I decided it was time to try something different... This was a really cool smoking, sweet (not "aromatic sweet" though) and smooth all the way. One of those tobaccos you feel like you could smoke for hours and hours. It's an easy smoke as you don't really have to light the pipe over and over again. It was a very good surprise and I'm definitely getting more of this tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tripjoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tripjoker (64)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I'd never tried this one and on a trip to the local B&M decided to purchase a tin. The HOTW big brother is one of my favorite virginia experiences, and had read so much about OG that I could not imagine not liking it. I was not let down.

The 100gr. tin delivers a broken flake that still needs some work if you choose to rub it out completely. I have decided that I like loading the broken flake as it is and not rubbing it out. The cut is a nice thin ribbon that is so popular with european tobacco houses. I have become a fan of this cut and think that the smoking is made easier by it. The color of the tobacco is that of a very well done Sticky Toffee Pudding. The tin aroma even suggests a dark sweet treat.

Moisture level is about right and can be mitigated with the briefest of time out of the tin. Lighting is easy after the char and stays lit unless you let it go out. Burns dry to the bottom of the bowl. Very little dottle.

The flavors start in that light grassy, bright high note. It soon turns darker and hints at molasses, brown bread, caramel, cashews and coffee. Mid bowl this all deepens once again to a level that delivers chocolate, warm spices and more yeast bread.

I have to say that after smoking Old Gowrie, I think I may prefer it to HOTW. But, sweet is the life that has those choices to make. Cheers!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Big Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Big (218)
★★★☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

One thing I have to hand to Rattray's ( and Mac Barens also), their tobacco's come with the perfect moisture content right out of the tin, you're not paying for water weight. Upon opening the tin you can smell a fig/ prune aroma more than a Virginia hay sent. The tobacco took a light easy and settled into a very smooth, mild, Virginia out front type smoke. Not as young as Orliks Golden Sliced (red) , not as bright as Mac B Virginia #1. After about a 1/3 of the bowl the Perique just starts to show itself, a little raisin spice more like McC 5100 Red Cake Virginia , not overly sweet. I still don't have my kick of "N" yet but the flavor is more Kentucky showing , similar to Solani's 660 Silver Flake but a touch milder. Wow, if I can get 660 at 1/2 the price, I'm happy ( can you tell I'm on a fixed income). No Bite , but I'm trying to get my "N" and puffing harder, this is bringing a little bitterness about 1/2 way. Now the Kentucky & Perique are out front , very little Virginia sweetness. Needed a relight at about 2/3 bowl, I let it cool for a few minutes and relit , now the sweeter Virginias are back and no bitterness ( I was probably puffing to hard) finally got my "N" in the last 1/3 bowl. Final evaluation: More of a Virginia Kentucky, similar to a mild Solani 660, not what I'd consider a VaPer . I'd buy again

My second bowl I smoked slower and it was sweeter, however, I did notice a little nip at the tongue

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pip Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pip (36)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is a great Vaper. Nice broken flake wiht jus the perfect moisture content. Smells clean and fresh in the tin. Like a nice spring day. (hay, cut grass, figs ans raisins) Got a bit of bite the first time around. The second time I slowed it down to savor the flavors and the bite was gone. It took an hour to finish the second bowl and all that was left was clean dry white ash. It does not disapoint. Awesome!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Simply one of the best Virginia blends I've ever tasted! Fragrant, rich, complex, yet never over powering. Cool smoking, does not bite.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Freshly opened tin gives off the aromas of the finest Virginia flake. Dried fruit, cured hay, sweet yet tangy, Scottish oatmeal, “sweet feed” (oats & molasses mixture for horses), even chocolate notes. To a lover of Virginia leaf, it smells like heaven.

Light up, and the flavor builds as the Virginia warms up. Delicious sweet grains, bread dough, graham crackers, and hay. Lighter than a lot of VA flakes, but it's not short on flavor. Very enjoyable. Gets sweeter and better as the bowl burns down. Bites a little if neglected. A Virginia mixture that nearly rivals “Hal O' The Wynd”, if such a thing is possible.

The lightest of Rattray's flagship trio of VA blends, (Old Gowrie, Hal O' The Wynd, Marlin Flake). A quality aged Virginia. And like Hal O' The Wynd, this one is on my favorites list.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

There is a lot l like about OG , but there is also something that puts me off. Don't know quite what, maybe the Kentucky, maybe some casing..

So the hunt is on for an OG without the cons. Contenders so far: SG MVF, Synjeco's Broken Perique Flake and Virginia Perique Slices and searching...

As you can see l did not find the Perique very present, hence I also search among 100% virginia tobaccoes for 'the perfect' Old Gowrie...

And of course some tins of OG are waiting in my cellar to find out if some aging can fix my problem.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipe Gent Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe Gent (8)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

It is no surprise that as Marlin Flake was my first virginia, this was my first VA/PER, and is thus sentimental to me. This is a great companion to Marlin, but with a mustier, earthier taste, which I enjoy a little more than the juicy sweetness of the Marlin. The tobacco is a broken flake, and while not as pretty as Marlin's large, lofty flakes, loading is easy and the tin aroma is spicy and delightful. The perique takes a peek here and there, and the natural, full virginia flavor takes control nicely. I will admit that I was surprised to find there was perique in this blend as only through nose exhales could I faintly detect it. Overall, this is a solid, high quality VA/PER, but to me, not in Escudo, Gawith, or C&D's Sunday Picnic territory--It is a real piper's tobacco that some may appreciate and enjoy even more than the hailed, aforementioned VA/PERS.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TheSmokinDragon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TheSmokinDragon (56)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

UPDATE: 6/26/2011-=-This blend...MMM-MMM-MMM, gonna add a pnd to the cellar for sure!

Very high-quality leaf, just enough Vitamin-N, great flavor throughout entire smoke. Sweet/tangy and correct amount of Perique for a nice spiced finish (blown through nasal to really taste that wonderful Perique (think only real way) This could be my all-day smoke, very good stuff

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mickey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mickey (7)
★★★☆
Very Mild Mild Very Mild Tolerable

I use Old Gowrie to mix with Spilmans using half and half, makes

a wonderful all day pipe. I use Old Gowrie as a base when I want

to create other blends as well. I fail to find the Perique, it just seems like a neutral smoke by itself.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Having gone through a number of tins, I can't seem to find a nicer representation of a ready rubbed virginia perique.

The tin aroma is of dried fruit and has a nice sweet musty smell.

I find it to be a rather easy tobacco to work with, and smokes beautifully after some drying.

The flavor is Virginia sweet with a little spice through the nose. Mid bowl, the flavor really takes off. Make sure you try this tobacco if you are a virginia fan.

For some reason this blend gives me a very nice dose of nicotine where, to me, some stronger rated tobaccos fall short. I can't quite put my finger on it.

I love it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

risle-lariviere Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
risle-lariviere (33)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

To my humble opinion it's quite the same as Scottich Cake from McConnell but a bit stronger and a tiny little bit fuller .

A good offering.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kiowapipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kiowapipe (17)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Truly a great blend, I love everything about it. Tin aroma is spicy and bright, it reminds me of fresh hay. The cut is a real joy to pull apart and load up. Fairly strong nicotine content- if your tolerance is low a big bowl of this will definitely hit you.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

i have tried a lot of brands, but i keep going back to rattrays old gowrie, has that taste that i like, it does not bite, and the aroma is not over powering its just right. i highly recommend this tobacco and give it 4 stars. dutch

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Old Gowrie is a delightful blend, presented as a brown, broken flake, with a Virginia tin aroma that is pure, sweet heaven and at a moisture content that is as close to right as you could ask. Old Gowrie is a hard tobacco to write about. I could state the usual for my reviews – charring light, early bowl, mid-bowl, end of bowl, and do my best to describe it. OK, then. The charring light tastes like Virginia should. The early bowl is, in a word, Virginia. Mid-bowl is Virginia. End of bowl is Virginia. Every puff is absolute pleasure. In strength, Old Gowrie is somewhere between Rattray's Brown Clunee and Hal O'The Wynd, both of which are excellent smokes in their own right. But Old Gowrie rises above the standards set by those two, entering into that rarified air set aside for nirvana-blends. Like any Virginia, Old Gowrie has a potential to cause some bite, but if smoked carefully it is extremely smooth. The flavor is full and rich, complex yet easy; sweet and almost floral, and as satisfying as a fine meal. The only negative I can come up with for Old Gowrie is price. However, some things are worth the extra cost. A Porsche costs more than an Fiesta for reason. I'll gladly pay the extra for this blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Claudius Stradivarius Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Claudius Stradivarius (171)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Very, very, very nice VA/kentucky broken flake!

Hopwever, it lacks some vitamin N. But for the rest, it is very well done!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Sorringowl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sorringowl (8)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

After smoking most of a tin of this and coming to the same conclusion about it after every smoke, I think I'm ready to review this. I really like the way this starts out, very smooth and mellow but, halfway through the smoke this becomes a little too spicy for me to enjoy. A good quality tobacco but a little too much Perique for me, I think. Between this and Escudo, I enjoy Escudo more.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

The Full English Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
The Full English (31)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable

I love what Rattray are about: the Old-World style of no-nonsense tobacco, right through to the elegant house-style of the packaging; a subtle change here and there, detailing one blend from Its near neighbour on all those cream tins.

As one of a small sub-group of closely related Rattray blends, Old Gowrie is, perhaps, a useful reference point for those of us also drawn to Marlin Flake, and HOTW. Old Gowrie would seem to serve as a happy median, with Its full taste and voluptuous strength, working some serious toil to compensate for Its obviously lower nicotine content. Impressive indeed.

However, I found that Old Gowrie fell a little short of my initially positive impressions, and my affection for it - and interest in it - has slowly waned over time. Through the weeks I've had my tin, that hint of perique has grown to become something of an annoyance from a minor doubt, and if it weren't for Its inclusion, Old Gowrie would smoke like a piper's dream. Sadly though, I find it undermines the subtle sweetness of malted raisins and dates, through a slightly uncomfortable, prickly heat that never quite sits flush with the rest of the blend.

It's not quite conducive to a relaxed and contemplative mood, and strangely, my temperament seems to err towards a testy angst after smoking it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Red Rapparee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Red Rapparee (8)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Howdy all, Red here. Not much to add to the plethora of reviews of this great old tobacco but I can't help but running off at the mouth just a wee bit as I drive by.

In my opinion, this is the reference light Va/Per blend. The Virginias are tame, slightly muted and, at least in my Peterson System 312, bite free. Unlike a full Va/Per this tobacco has a much more subtle spicey side along with a wonderfully light and yet consistent Kentucky Burley nutty/smokey thing happening in the background. It would almost pass for a straight stoved VA that was smoked in a pipe haunted by Peterson's Irish Flake and Escudo. If that were possible. Three thumbs up.

Highly Recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Taste Buds Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Taste Buds (136)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This beauty of a smoke makes me sorry for not trying it years ago. I tried Marlin Flake a few years back and didn't care for the taste. I don't remember why. Maybe it was the added strength or the cavendish or the additional nicotene. But this is light and elegant. The touch of Kentucky keeps it smooth and cool and adds body and not strength. A no bite delight. Smooth and naturally delicious. The perique is ever so lightly applied, but it's there in every puff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I predominantly smoke virginias, and enjoy milder examples.

Old Gowrie has some pretty fair reviews below - this is an unpretentious, quality tobacco, easy-smoking, mild but with a pleasant virginia dominant flavour, slightly ashy in the second half of the bowl, and a pronounced sweet and lingering aftertaste.

Smokers that are looking for a "statement" of flavorings will probably find Old Gowrie wanting - there is little apparent topping which suggests it is a plain sugar and vinegar treatment, in good balance, or a light hand indeed in what flavorings have been added. Very little perique, if any, certainly less than some of the best-known Vapers.

This is a bit of purist smoke for the plain, milder virginia smoker looking for nuance rather than bold statement. There is subtlety and pleasure in smoking it dry and slow. I'll cellar a fair amount - it would be an excellent blender with topped blends that are found to overbearing, or could take a pinch or two of latakia or perique in stride. Solid stuff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Daggers62 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Daggers62 (18)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

It is a very nice tobacco. Beautiful fruity smell from the tin, it reminded me of a nice thick fruit cake full of raisins and currants.

A nice sweet taste of virginia but that was about it. In the UK we have to pay a little bit more for Rattray and it certainly wasnt worth that extra quid.

Very nice smoke but nothing special

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (121)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

My first Rattray blend. Virginia with Kentucky and a hint of Perique. Musky, fermented smell with dry fig and raisin undertones. The wet broken flake packs and smokes well from the tin. A light Perique blend with a decent amount of flavor that will probably get better as it dries over time. The flavor is naturally sweet, tangy and has that classic fig and raisin Virginia taste with a shade of spiciness from the Perique.

Update :I sincerely expected more but the tobacco taste remains the same after a few weeks even when transferred to a jar. 2.5 stars in conclusion. There are better tobaccos with Perique on the market, Three Nuns (the square tin) being one of them.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

utahpipeman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
utahpipeman (6)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Hmmmm...2 stars or 3 stars. This is high quality tobacco for sure. Nice pure tobaccos that don't have as much bite as I have found in other virginias. The only problem is that you really have to like that soapy taste and mouth feel that some tobacco has. I happen to dislike that taste, but I'll still rate it for what it is without my personal bias and just give you fair warning.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I've not smoked Old Gowrie for about 10 years, but it has changed beyond recognition. This used to be a straight virginia blend and altogether lighter in colour. It's now darker in colour, almost as if another leaf is in the blend, and I do detect a perique background - it's also lost its tangy virginia flavour that was so pronounced in its original composition. All this simply means that OG has not survived, un-scathed, the transition to Kohlhase Kopp blending unlike HOTW and Brown Clunee, both of which faired better and still retain their original composition - more or less.

All said and done, OG still produces a reasonable smoke as a blended virginia, but for the die-hard purests, there are better straight virginia alternatives.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipealicious Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipealicious (19)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

My number one Virginia blend. My tin is blended by the German house by the name Kohlhase&Kopp. The tin aroma is enticing: a musky, tangy, hay-like, natural sweetness. The humidity was perfect and the broken flakes are very easy to handle and stuff loosely in the pipe. The tobacco flavor is complex, sweet, grassy, but not very lemon-like as in other pure Virginias, such as Full Virginia Flake by Samuel Gawith. I prefer Old Gowrie over FVF due to this aspect. Nothing beats this for me at the moment.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PeteSavinelli Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PeteSavinelli (8)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Honestly, OG is not really my style or preference. BUT, taken for what it is, it is obviously a very high quality tobacco that burns well and clean with a nice, but not overpowering flavor. I tend to smoke a bit hot and this really did not bite me at all and my bowl stayed as cool as anything I've smoked. If Virginias are your thing, you could do a heck of a lot worse than OG.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

A millitary medium VA...

Easy cool all day smoke. Lighter than HOTW which I find is a touch more peppery than OG.

When I need an extra dimension or fuller flavour I plump for FVF. But OG is a welcome edition to my prefered VA tastes.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mike__P Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mike__P (87)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

There are over 150 reviews of OG, so I'll keep it short: It's smooth, tangy and satisfying with a bit of natural sweetness -- and it's "well behaved," as reported. If there's perique in the recipe, it's there in small measure. It's a bit grassy to me, and I prefer darker Virginias.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Rattray is great name to see on your tin. Whether it is Old Gowrie or Hal' O the wind.

I just can't wait for my piggy bank to fill or to finish a new pipe. Then I go out and try a Rattray I haven't tried before.

This is my Englishish Rattray blend but i hate to label them that way.

Each blend can be tagged based on an old blend but the truth of the matter is they only use broad strokes. They must be looking for the best 21st century blend and not hoping to recreate last centuries fave.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Mac Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Mac (8)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Old Gowrie has a wonderful tin aroma, but it's far to wet to smoke straight out of the tin. At the risk of editorializing, I always scratch my head when I read reviews that criticize a tobacco for smoking "too wet"--unless one is dealing with a particularly heavy casing, most condensation and bowl gurgle can usually be dealt with by letting a blend breathe a bit before packing or switching to a higher quality briar (or a corncob, for that matter). But I digress.

OG is grassy, and less sweet than I was expecting from the tin smell. It's well- behaved for a virginia, which is to say it'll still bite easily enough if I get distracted. It has an oat-y note from time to time as well, and a nice, faint clover flourish that shows up once in a while near the end of the bowl.

Maybe I'd "get" OG better if I could afford to dedicate a pipe to it (I do keep my straight virginia pipe pretty clean), but for right now, I'm going to give it three stars. It's good for what it is, and maybe that's all one can ask of any blend, but there are so many other great straight virginias out there--Full Virginia Flake, Best Brown Flake, the McClelland 20's, etc.--that I really don't see what all the fuss is about.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Grizzly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Grizzly (6)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

First off let me say that I am a novice pipe smoker and I cant detect every nuance in different tobaccos but I know what I like. As I am still learning which blends i like I bought a tin of 50g of this with 3 other different tobaccos namely Connoisseurs Choice, Old Dublin and Sunset Breeze. I must admit that the number one choice for me was C.C. however this pushed it a close second. In actual fact it was the first of the four tins that I finished. Although that was only because I wanted to prolong my supply of CC until I could get some more. That being said I found this to be a perfectly good smoke. When opening the tin you get a whiff of hay and a sweetness of dried fruit. The sweetness is evident in the smoking too. Obviously I am beginning to identify the sweetness of the Virginia leaf. Half way down the bowl I get a spiciness which does not overpower the smoke and all in all leaves you wanting more. I thought that my better half wouldnt like the smell of this but when I lit up in the car she commented that the smell wasnt unpleasant at all. Which for her was a massice compliment as she dislikes tobacco smoke (cigarettes).

I have added this tobacco to my list of definitely must have again, but for now I am still exploring although apart from Connoisseurs Choice I feel that this tobacco has shown me which area to explore in the future and that will in the direction of good Virginias. Am looking forward to trying Marlin Flake, Petersons University Flake and SGs Best Brown Flake. these should make for interesting comparisons.

Of the others I tried I definitely wont be getting another tin of Old Dublin again (see other review)which was not my cup of tea. Which I guess was due to the smokey quality of the Latakia. which gave me hiccups no matter how slow I smoked. I will also give sunset breeze a miss too especially as Connoisseurs Choice is much more pleasant to my taste.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

eamonclever Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
eamonclever (45)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

i haven´t reviewed one of my top notch tobaccos ... don´t know why. Always keep some in my cabinet but I don´t reach the stage to get some aged tobaccos so far... What to say more - I love the tin aroma, the tobacco out of the tin in my bowl in my mouth and out through my nose. It is perfect in the va department for ready rubbed tobaccos. Why - even though it comes out of the Rattray line there still exists imo a big difference if you smoke the rattray virginia tobaccos as a flake or ready rubbed. The ready rubbed invites you with aroma that is nicely performed through the entire bowl, so you can always be sure what your smoking experience will be. If you are looking for a tobacco that has a good amount of nicotine & good "smokers" taste you have to try OG. It is also good for beginners because there is not much care needed to keep it going.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DrDyson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DrDyson (113)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

A wonderful tobacco, for a given value of ‘wonderful': i.e. completely natural and untampered with. The tin note and room note are superb; the flavour when lit is sweet, full and natural, and stays the same all the way down the bowl. If you like your tobacco straightforward and uncased, you'll like this: pure Virginia, with the spicy touch of Perique in there as well, adding a little depth and body to the Virginia flavour.

Despite the ‘rubbed out' description on the tin OG seems to me more like a broken flake. In my experience (though I see that not everyone agrees with me on this) it isn't necessary to rub it out any further, though it's a good idea to let it dry a little. Smoke it slowly to avoid bite and get the best out of the subtle flavours. It'll bite if you rush it, but it's a very gentle smoke if you treat it with care.

There really isn't much more that one can say about this tobacco. It's superb without being in any way fancy or exotic. It reminds me a little bit, I think, of two old favourites, long gone: W.D. and H.O. Wills's Cut Golden Bar, and Player's No Name. But this is going back a very long way, and maybe my memory is faulty. Anyway, it's a first-rate tobacco.

(A bit expensive, unfortunately: perhaps more of a ‘special occasion' smoke than an everyday one. Well worth the money, though, if you like the kind of thing it is.)

Nobody has rated this review yet.

chuckt808 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
chuckt808 (7)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Tolerable

My absolute favorite tobacco. An excellent Virginia, much more complex and nuanced than FVF. Wonderful smell, divine taste: organic, citrusy, earthy. Absolute must try for fans of Virginias. For what it's worth, I have not tried Hal O' The Wind but I have tried Marlin Flake and I enjoy Marlin Flake as well but this is just a shade better for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

FALCON Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
FALCON (12)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

this is god i like it but i not can take straight virginia its get to my stomach.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Rustica Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rustica (16)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

VA blends are my favorite followed closely by English blends. Of all the VA blends I have tried in my limited amount of pipe smoking experience(4 years) this blend has been my hands down favorite. The tobacco arrives fairly moist with a gorgeous fermented smell in the tin that I like very much in a virginia. The broken/rubbed out flake was easier to pack when fully rubbed out and smoked with only two matches to the end despite its wetness. I did not detect any casing what so ever. This blend is strictly quality tobacco with flavors of oats, salt and pepper, and a slight leathery scent in the nose. I definitely noticed a slight nicotine kick in this blend which was not overbearing and very enjoyable while I was studying for an exam:) The room note was surprisingly fairly sweet considering the lack of flavoring. Found myself puffing away on the very last ashes of this blend and half tempted to smoke another bowl. To all VA lovers this is an easy tobacco to indulge yourself in noticing its many flavors and just as easy to casually puff on and forget about(in a good way).

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dogwood Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dogwood (17)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

this is my favorite blend. i'm a virginia lover. i primarily like va/per blends.

old gowrie is a black flake with perique and some other leaf maybe kentucky. it is sweet, balanced and complex. i like that it doesn't have any flavoring just great tobacco blended well.

rattray's virginia blends are all fantastic. give any rattray virginia a try. they're the best.

the only down side to og is that it doesn't come in full flake form. i'd love to rub out this amazing stuff myself or smoke in larger pieces!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dk-piper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dk-piper (25)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

What a delightful virginia blend. I prefer this blend over Hal O' the Wynd. OG's smoke is gentle and smooth. Sidestream aroma is wonderful nutty toasty. In the Top-list of pure Virginiablends, this one will be hard to beat!

=Update= desciption of OG on their official website: "Delicate, dark Virginia, Kentucky and a breeze of Perique mature up to 3 months in a press. then the pressed tobacco is cut and hand-rubbed."

so not a pure virginiablend...delicious anyways.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ian0077 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ian0077 (7)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I have been smoking Marlin Flake for many years and my tobacconist had run out, so I tried Rattray's Old Gowrie. What a pleasant suprise, whatever had I missed.

This is truly a delightful tobacco. The difference from Marlin Flake to Old Gowrie is very subtly different. I now prefer OG. This is another excellent virginia tobacco. I hope this has been of some help in choosing a very nice slow burning virginia to slowly sip and savour, please enjoy like I have.

Best wishes to all of you, what a great website, learnt so much, Ian....Liverpool. u.k.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Chris08 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Chris08 (37)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

While the sticker on the bottom of the tin says dark Virginia flake, I found this to be more suitably categorized as a medium Virginia.

The tobacco is similar in texture and taste to Samuel Gawith's Medium Virginia Flake. A little darker in colour than MVF, and a little sweeter as the smoke progresses. Not significantly so, however, and certainly not enough to justify the price difference, in my opinion.

I would certainly reccomend this tobacco for someone experimenting with Virginias, because I believe that there is a Holy Grail of tobaccos for everyone. While this would be a non-offensive daily smoker for me, I really crave the fuller flavoured Virginias-FVF is perfect for me.

When looking for a lighter smoke, I would probably gravitate toward MVF or Golden Glow. They offer the best bang for the buck in this category.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

il commissario Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
il commissario (9)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a medium to dark brown ready rubbed flake, with some light and greenish strands. It has a nice moisture content but it needs to be dried properly to avoid tongue bite which can be a bit of a problem when lighting. Opening the tin reveals a tangy woody and freshly cut grass smell, which when the tobacco is dried becomes more earthy. There is a distinct combination of sweet and savoury to the smell and it often reminds me of very pure dark chocolate.

Drying is a bit of a problem with this blend as there is a small window between it being too moist (and bitey) and too dry when it will smoke harsh. You will need to monitor it closely but once you've got it right it's a great smoke. There is a satisfying Virginia tangyness and subtle sweetness that remains down the bowl, and it will constantly change from more earthy to more chocolate flavours. Sometimes I will notice a hint of orange oil coming through. This is a nice tobacco to smoke on an afternoon walk, especially when in a contemplative mood, and just sip on the pipe to enjoy the subtle changes in flavour.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Nice ribbon cut with not too much moisture content. I grab for this is if I don't feel like rubbing out a flake. A nutty, somewhat sweet taste. A little pricey though. I give it it 3 stars for now. It's a nice subdued virginia.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

frankluke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
frankluke (17)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Mild Tolerable

i don't get this blend, it just doesn't work for me. nothing exciting about it, just boring ok tasting VA. i want to like this blend but it's just missing something.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Korndog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Korndog (16)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

First, I will say that this tobacco behaves very nicely in my pipes. It burns perfectly and has no objectionable characteristics. It lacks the depth and layering of other Ginny's I have been sampling, but still a fine smoke. It's rubbed out more than my preferred Marlin Flake. A very serviceable tobacco.

Note: For some reason, this tobacco seems to bite (throat and mouth) a bit for me. I have to be very careful with it, which knocks it down to two stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

kg0mz Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
kg0mz (54)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I like this Virginia very much. It is one of four or five straight VAs that I smoke in my favorite pipe. I thought I might become a VA kind of guy, but my throat will not co-operate.

This is not as sweet as FVF, not as rich as Gold Brick, and not as flavorful as Cut VA Plug, but it is in that class. I wish I could smoke it more often, but for my throat.

There is no bite. It burns even and cool right from the tin. I like the taste, the texture, the aroma, and if I keep it to one or two bowls per week I am okay. I have tried drying it some, I have tried it in several pipes, I take my time with it, but...

They all irritate my throat. I have the best luck with Gold Brick. I do not blame the tobacco. I save it for special occasions.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Dedalus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Dedalus (6)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

A good unadulterated Virginia, however, I give it three stars because I find SG BBF more satisfying.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PipeDrummer88 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipeDrummer88 (12)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I really like this tobacco. I think I would have taken to VA tobaccos much quicker if I would have smoked this for my first non-aromatic. I don't think there is any added flavoring in this tobacco, it is very natural in taste. I do, however, get a very subtle hint of sweetness when I smoke this, and i'm guessing it has to do with the way it is cured (I know virtually nothing about this process and I could be dead wrong). Lovely tobacco, highly recommended, 4 stars!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mo (79)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I have decided to re-write my reviews.

Old Gowrie is a very special blend to me. It represents all that a memorable medium strength Virginia blend should be about. From the smell and feel of the leaf, to the lighting and sheer quality of this truly luxurious smoke. I love it.

With this blend i have had more memorable smokes than any other and enjoyed exclusively in my finest briars when i relax and ask NOT to be disturbed, it always delivers.

The flavour is truly something remarkable.It does not develope much and thank goodness it does NOT. I would not want that delicious mouthfilling creamy, oasty,slightly toasty taste to change and i think it is an absolute masterpiece.

This does not get boring, it is very well behaved and in a class it only shares with HOTW and Marlin Flake. If dried out properly, this blend will NOT bite at all, Rattrays do come wet in the tin and the moisture causes the bite so remember to air it out well.

This is a masterpiece and you owe it to yourself to smoke this. I cannot put in words how important this is in my rotation.

Mo, South Africa

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DK Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DK (569)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Although I have a tin or two of this in my cellar, it is not in my steady rotation. Instead, it's one of those blends where I stop by a friends house or a pipe shop with pipe in hand and no 'baccy, this is the one they always seem to have and that I always seem to gravitate towards. In that respect, it's an old friend that you might not spend a lot of time with, but that never lets you down when you do.

Nice flake-style tobacco with a mellow sweetness. Can burn hot if you allow it to, so should be smoked in the traditional virginia "sipping" style. I would not call this a complex blend at all but it does have that air of familiarity and comfort that comes with knowing that while it doesn't have the complexity, it also isn't going to turn harsh on you. Sort of the "old dog, no new tricks" thing. Very comforting. No surprises.

I'm really looking forward to what a few years of aging might do for this blend. It's a good smoke as is but it seems to have all the makings of a superior tobacco with some aging. We'll see.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BingCrosby Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BingCrosby (48)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

This is a very satisfying virginia with enough flavor to satisfy an English smoker and enough bang for those who like to wake up.. Very smooth hay like scent and flavor.. If you search you will find some tart fruitiness.. but the general quality here is smooth.. This is what many would call an all day smoke.. it is the sort of thing you crave.. not to say that it isn't complex - I think it hangs in there with the best of them.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Plex Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Plex (39)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

The aroma of the open jar brings to mine freshly made fig filing for cookies or other delightful pastry or desert. ?Ready Rubbed? or so they say in the description for this wonderful Virginia blend. Fairly thick, almost stringy clumps like those recently plucked from a juicy flake. Planned this encounter the night before and left the suitable amount sitting out for about 10 hours to dry to the appropriate level. Planned as an after-breakfast smoke and following home-made cinnamon- raisin french Toast I was ready for it.

Felt much drier and crackling between the fingers. Now we rub it aggressively between two textured rubber-like gripper-pads and viola, a suitable (for me) ?ready rubbed? for loading in a pipe.

Gravity fed and packed in three stages and ready to char. Still a surprising amount of moisture as I watched it twist and writhe before my nose. A tamp and a touch- up and we are off to hills of Virginia.

Many seem to have trouble sipping their Virginias, but OG can't be had any other way. It makes me sip at it. Savor the smoke, rolling it around the palate over the tongue and up and back through the cave at the back of the nose.

Damn fine!

Wonderful sweetness and rich tobacco. Wonderful with a fresh-ground, home roasted coffee. They begin to play around with the taste-buds, complimenting and supporting one another. What a great morning smoke! Probably would even be great before breakfast; great in the afternoon; great any time you can stop, relax and spend the time to pamper yourself through savoring this blend.

No harsh after tastes or undertones all the way down. Just a gradual increase in depth of flavor and intensity. No bite or suggestion of one lurking, but that could change if not dried as much.

My SigOther complements the room note stating that it is both wonderful and enjoyable. That from one who suffers allergies and sinus problems! All too soon, it reaches the bottom and for a bit I consider another bowl, but, I'm forced to realize that not enough was dried for this, so until the next time.

This wonderful friend is a regular visitor, but still a real treat to entertain and enjoy. Next time, we dry even longer, and see what there is left to discover.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Quick_nick Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Quick_nick (27)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Sweet and grassy scent in the bag mouth watering from the start. I rubbed it out a bit and let sit about 15 minutes, used the frank method to pack. Starts out very pleasant and sweet then after about 10 minutes I start to get a little nose tingle and wonder if there?s a bit of perique. Smoking characteristics were the same through the whole bowl and I once caught myself going a bit too fast but the tobacco never punished me for it. Smoked very cool with no bite and the room note was also quite pleasant. It gave me a slight head rush after I was through and there nothing left but beautiful ash. Overall it smoked beautifully and was a very pleasant smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Old Gowrie is a top quality straight Virginia blend, while it taste full and delightful, it is not as good as Hal O' the Wynd

If I have to buy 3 tins of Virginia from Rattray, I would choose 3 tins of Hal O' the Wynd

Marline Flake and Old Gowrie I really dont care about.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Iron Pipe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Iron Pipe (6)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Who says youth is wasted on the young? Me for one!

I don't know if a Young Gowrie exists, but if it does it sure has a lot of growing up to do to match it's more mature cousin.

This Virginia is probably the best you can get. No bite, easy to light, very forgiving with a wonderful, rounded flavour.

This is a perfect all day smoke, in long, chunky strands it packs easily and just gets better from there.

Highly recommended to all.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

golfguy62 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
golfguy62 (2)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

If I could have only five tobaccos in my rotation, this would definitely be one of them. OG is a pure, uncomplicated Va. that never grows old. Pure taste, even burning and no bite. Let it age for at least a year and you will be rewarded many times over. The quality is consistent and the price is reasonable.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hoo-boy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hoo-boy (17)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

It was for a long time that I, for what ever reason had never tried O G I don't know why, I guess I was just satisfied with other brands and decided thay made NO better. Then one day a friend was visiting and I asked him what he was smoking, he did not answer just handed me his pouch, I loaded and lit up , "MAMA MIA, Thatsa soma gooda meatballs"!

From that day forward I believe this is the creme dela creme of VAs. If you have read any of my reviews you are familiar with my take on McCraines red ribbon and Red flake, Folks This blend from Rattrays is on equal footing or slightly surpassing these fine VAs.

The tobacco is a lightly rubbed flake ( not by my difination of fully rubbed) of yellow to reddish color, with No casing, Naturally sweet with NO bite easily packed, a tad too moist but dries out easily. An all day good smoke. BUT I will not smoke it all day for to do that I might become burned out on this blend (pun intended) So I have it in my rotation to smoke a coupla a times a week. it smokes consistant to bottom of bowl with oodles of creamy smoke. Reading the other reviews I am not alone in giving this baccy' 3 and probably a tad more kinda like 3 1/2 stars !

hoo-boy

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipi Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipi (3)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Being a member of the pipe - tobacco smoker's plebs, and by that I mean that I live in Greece, where in the last 5 - 8 years one can find only a couple of Danish aromatics of the worst kind available in stores, I recently smoked this outstanding tobacco in Vienna - I have to thank you all for your comments, which led me bying this memorable VA and rediscover the pleasure of good leaf - good ol' Virginia, creamy, savoury and friendly for the palate, keeps me happy bowl after bowl! Definitely my desert island choice_ PiPi

Nobody has rated this review yet.

bearzerker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
bearzerker (17)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I've been buying and sampling a lot of different tobacco brands and blends lately and I have to say OG was a great change of pace. Most of the blends I've purchased have contained a lot of latakia and I have to say I'm getting pretty burned out on it. It covers up the taste of the other tobaccos they blend it with and I was pleased to burn a bowl of this and not have to deal with latakia. Old Gowrie is a very pleasent smoke and one of the better Virginia blends I've tried to date. When I first opened the seal on the can the smell reminded me of rasins with a hint of maple. When I lit it I found it's flavor very nice with no throat or tongue burn. It has a nice subtle aroma. I can see where it can be a good all day smoke. It goes well with my first cup of coffee in the morning and glass of whiskey in the evening. I've been smoking my tin of this pretty regular. I don't think I'll buy a large quantity of this but I'll buy another tin of it to stash away for a rainy day.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

pipinNfishin Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipinNfishin (21)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Mild Pleasant

I was not happy with Old Gowrie. It did not bite. It burned beautifully. I could not get very much flavor out this blend. I did notice a burley presence. It is on the strong side of medium.

I will explore Old Gowrie further, but I cannot highly recommend Old Gowrie, when there are many blends I would recommend before this.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Quality Virginia it is, but, to be precise, with Kentucky and Perique in small doses. That's what gives Old Gowrie its strength, I suppose. By the way, K+K's website states that OG, Marlin Flake and Hal O'The Wynd have the same grade of strength (nicotine wise) - and having smoked all three of them before stumbling on Kohlhase & Kopp's website, I have no reason to doubt it. The three tobaccos are different in fullness of the taste, with OG being the mildest and HOTW the fullest with MF in the middle. But as for the nicotine, I found them very close - and rather strong. Medium to strong to be more precise, although that's hardly precise and subjective anyway.

Old Gowrie's taste is brilliant, oaty, not too sweet. It's like a nice bottle of a reserved dry red wine. It's definitely a blend that deserves attention, but it did not find place in my cellar due to the high price vs. little tobacco content in the 100 g tin.

Four stars for price/quality, and one for price/quantity. With quality being the more important factor, that would make three greedy stars from this price-conscious smoker.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pseudo Nim Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pseudo Nim (96)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Just gone through my first tin of Old Gowrie, thanks to this website and the reviews of our esteemed colleagues below and concour with the many. I bought this as a backup / standby, as I was travelling for the first time to Poland, which I was correctly led to beleive, would be hot an humid. Although I took a number of Sam Gawith's flakes with me, along with a precious Dunhill Flake. This was a good investment and served well it's purpose as an early morning smoke without too many complaints as to room note (even though I was only allowed to smoke in peace on the balcony) the only comment I got was "smells like cigarettes" from my daughter who was busy keeping an eye on the old man in case I was tempted with fags in the current weather.

On returning to England, I finished the tin which, although is not the OG of old, judgeing by previous reviews, and I detected no "Oatey Flavours" I did find OG to be a good quality easy smoking tobacco with no bad habits, mild and with a taste I can't quite put my finger on, but very pleasant.

Didn't bother to rub out, just loaded straight from the tin, burned well with never more than two matches even in high humidity. Seemed to smoke much better in the cooler climate of England, or maybe that's just me as I am not a lover of high tempratures and high humidity.

I have since bought two more tins of OG, and if these prove to be as good as the last, will most likely end up in my rotation as an anytime smoke and ease out one of my others, Mac Barens Viginia Flake being the most probable candidate.

Subject to the reviews below, I have also placed an order for two tins of Marlin, I am sure I will not be dissapointed.

FINAL NOTE : While in Poland, I tried to find a local offering, the closest being "Grand" (which it was not) but even that was made by Philip Morris, on lighting it up, my polish freind, whose wedding I was a guest of, said "I know we are outside, but will you please stop polluting my country" after a quarter of a bowl I was happy to oblige and donated the remainder of the pouch to the nearest waste bin.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarChef Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarChef (100)
★★★★
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Old Gomer...Marlin Flake's very own "Mini Me". A light Virginia flake that, for me, is a great early morning eye-opener. Mild in every positive sense of the word. Past mid-morning I tend to want a little more "more" in my smokes and tend to move on to Brown Clunee or something similar. Your mileage may vary, and I can easily see how this could be an all day smoke.

Very nicely done tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Old Puffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old Puffer (42)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Unnoticeable

The only trouble I have with this blend is, whether you buy it tinned or in bulk, it is never rubbed out to my satisfaction. There are always large clumps that I either have to sit and meticulously pull apart, even after attempting to hand rub it. I finally found a solution to this problem after reading a technique described on this forum by Paddy and Pipestud; I put a small amount in a blender, give it about 2 seconds on high and it comes out almost perfect.

So far, I have had no problem with needing any extra drying. This stuff is exquisite and is, to me, a perfect Virginia baccy. It lights easily, settles down quickly, and smokes with just the right amount of Virginia flavor to keep me settled down. Does not smoke hot if puffed properly and keeps reasonably pure in taste all the way down. Although OG is strongly reminiscent of Hal O' the Wynd (which is one of my very favorites), It has slightly less strength and decidedly less nicotine kick. Could be an all-day choice if ones tastes were not prone to variety.

All in all, I think I am getting to be a Rattray junkie. This stuff gets a strong 5 stars from me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Packer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Packer (56)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

It's all been said, but I'll add my thoughts on this blend. Rattray knows Virginia. This is a straight Va......pure, and simple. If you like a fine Va. look no further. I love a good flake, but this ready rubbed blend plays to my lazy nature. After drying out this is one of the easiest blends to pack, light, and smoke that is out there. I usually have a 1 match smoke with this one(not too usual for me) My impression of this smoke is earthy, fresh mowed hay, mild, sweet. It is one of the better all day smokes. I have bought several 100 gram tins to consume/cellar. When I find it bulk I will jar several pounds. I rate this one

Nobody has rated this review yet.

XDipper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
XDipper (30)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Being an unabashed burleyphile, I was stepping totally out of my neighborhood with Old Gowrie. I had however, seen the glowing reviews for this blend and talked to several other burleyphiles that gave this the highest marks. So I decided to pick some up at the local B&M and give it a whirl.

This is perhaps the most smokable straight virginia I ever encountered. Naturally, it was a bit more sensitve to technique than my accustomed codger burlies but less so than other straight virginias I have smoked. The citrusy taste on this is turned way down. I found that once I got this going at a slow smolder, it required very little follow on attention and had a very smooth but full taste. There was that hint of something citrusy but way less than most virginias. The sweet and sour taste was in the background of something very grassy and a bit leathery. Very nice smoke, but mind you smoke it slowly. It seems a little more forgiving than many but will still bite like a kicked dog if you really start fast puffing it.

Being a virginia, it will never be the backbone of my rotation but it is a very fine smoke for a change of pace. It is top shelf no doubt and very smokable indeed. Three and a half stars for this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipeline Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipeline (206)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

April 2008:

A very fine flake, but I wish it was either deeper in flavor or more complex. I just am not smoking this or aging any serious quantities to keep this rated four stars.

March 2005: It is in the middle of Rattray's flake line and falls between Gawith's Best Brown and Full Virginia. This is wicked good and my preference in Rattray's pantheon. Except after enjoying the heaviest-flavored foods and beverages, Old Gowrie is a tin I can keep around and match just about any mood I'm in that requires pure Virginia flake.

For more tasting notes, see my review of Brown Clunee. OG is the "coolest" of the lot.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Classical Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Classical (13)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable to Strong

When discovering the world of premium tinned tobaccos, I relied heavily upon the reviews here and Old Gowrie was one of the highest rated of all. I knew I wanted to sample a pure Virginia and I was not comfortable with the idea of a flake, so I ordered the OG and never looked back.

This has become one of my most loved blends. It is so marvelous: relaxing and interesting, full and rich, that I can't really praise it enough. The flavors are so engaging that whether you run out of time and have to DGT it or whether you smoke it all at once while lingering over a favorite book, you just never run out of joy.

After an especially hard day or when reflecting on the deep things of God, I find that I simply must have a briar with Old Gowrie close at hand. As the other reviewers have wisely advised, let it dry out well and put it in a decent container to store.

Old Gowrie just keeps giving. I couldn't imagine smoking a pipe without this blend somewhere on my shelf.

Accompaniment: Elgar's Enigma Variations.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DoctorThoss Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DoctorThoss (144)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Thus far, this is my favorite straight VA. It's mild enough to smoke regularly but has enough nicotine to satisfy. In fact, this is the only straight VA I've tried that I sometimes use as an "all day" smoke. The tastes contained in this blend are incredibly complex and no two bowls seem quite the same. Oddly enough the flavor seems to become even more naunced as it loses moisture (though it also loses some strength). I think this blend does best in the fall or spring, although it's enjoyable at any time of the year. This is also a good blend for those just starting out on straight VAs, as it has less bite potential than most sweet VAs. Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Quoll Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Quoll (17)
★★☆☆
Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

This was the first Rattray's tobacco I tried and also the first 'good' straight Virginia. I enjoyed it.

The tin presentation is great. Rough broken flake with a complex hay/moss/grass/peat note. An easy tobacco to pack and light. One char was usually enough for me. The flavour/strength mix is very well balanced. Neither is very strong. The complexity of the Virginias remain delicate and interesting throughout the bowl, with the overall mildness keeping the flavours forefront.

That said, it is a little too mild for me, so I tend to go at it too hard. That way it gets too hot, sharp and it bites. With discipline, and when I am not after a robust smoke, this is a fine tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

PipePaladin Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipePaladin (78)
★★☆☆
Medium Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

I don't see the point of buying this one and not Hal O' the Wynd.. The second comes with a smoky character and low bite risks!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

flaminbill' Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
flaminbill' (57)
★★☆☆
Medium Mild Medium Tolerable

I was looking forward to trying this for a long time with great expectations. I smoked Hal O' the Wynd and Red Rapparee and though they were quite good.

I am being generous giving this a 2 star rating. The tin I tried is over a year old, so I don't think age was an issue. I tried this in several pretty good pipes and it just doesn't do it for me. Oddly enough, I tried it in a brand new pipe and it tasted fairly good - thus the two stars.

Old Gowrie seems to be very pipe dependent.

Maybe it's a bad tin or maybe it is the inconsistency of Rattray tobacco that some mention. This was a 50 gr. tin. I do have 100 gr. tin in the cellar that I will try later. At this point, I am disappointed. I have had much better straight virginias.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ex20adayman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ex20adayman (30)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant

What can I say that's not already been said. This is a great virginia smoke. Smooth, really tasty, burns well producing lots of smoke and no bite. It really has been blended to perfection. I found it has a cleansing effect on the palate.

However, I find it quite strong in the nicotine department. Indeed it is the only tobacco I've tried that keeps me off the pipe for several hours afterwards. Not so strong that it turns you green and makes you wobble on your feet but it definitely sates your appetite.

For this reason it's not an ideal smoke for me, I feel you have to plan this one into your routine.

Great after a meal or late in the evening. I can see why so many people have given this four stars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Slow Triathlete Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Slow Triathlete (48)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable

I'm newer to pipe smoking so at the recommendation of people on here and also other pipe smoking friends I bought a tin of this. I like the tin aroma as it is kind of sweet but I just personally think that this is a boring smoke. Not much flavor or anything after you light it up. I've smoked probably about 10 bowls of this so far. I've smoked it wet and dry and I just can't see what all the fuss is about. I'll probably put this away to see it improves with age. I also bought some Marlin Flake which is supposed to be similar to Old Gowrie but a little stronger and a different aroma. I'll give that one a try to see if I like it better.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TeeBee Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TeeBee (19)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The best VA I've ever tasted. Tin smell of fresh hay is fantastic. Nothing more to add.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

sentenza Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
sentenza (5)
★★☆☆
Mild Mild Very Mild Pleasant to Tolerable

Well first of all i have to tell you that i bought the italian yellow 100g.tin. I love virginias so after reading all the rewiews here i decided to buy this tobacco. Well as soon as i opened the tin the smell was great, creamy but not so sweet, so i smoke my first bowl with great satisfaction. sweet and tolerable room note fresh smoke pleasant smooth taste. I thought it was a great choice for virginia's lovers.i used to smoke Va's in the morning so the day after i smoked another bowl, but the feeling was not the same, taste was diminished and the aroma-smell too..After 10 days, i'm going to finish the tin but the tobacco now have changed completely..Aroma decreased a lot as the taste and the smell. now it'a a light flat flavoured tobacco. the only raccomandation that i can suggest it to smoke this old gowrie as soon as possible when you open the tin.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Stacey Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stacey (40)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Making my way down the 4 star list and I do not disagree with the majority on this one. It tastes a little sweet and smells even sweeter when you sniff the stuff in the can. It also has a creamy quality. All of which I like a lot. Definitely a quality virginia that is very consistent. On a side note I got this in a yellow can, though I'm sure it made no difference.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

AI Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
AI (3)
★★★★
Very Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant

This was my first try with the blend. The room note for me was pleasant and I didn't hear anything bad from the family, so that was a plus. It smoked very mildly without bite. It burned exactly as I was guessing it would while packing the pipe, which doesn't always happen for me when trying a new blend. The tin I opened was a little over a year old from the date thst I purchased it and I have a feeling that this tobacco would age beautifully in the tin for 2 years or more. I enjoy smoking different types of tobaccos from latikia blends to aromatics. But some of the ones that fall somewhere in between are my usual day to day tobaccos,Old Gowrie falls into that group.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

this is my first review here, this blend made me realize why we new pipesmokers usually start with aromatics and then move on to wonderful blends such as this one. this blend has converted me from a arromatic smoker to one that now understands the complexity and appreciates the taste of trully high quality tobacco. i highly recomend this tobacco as a first step out of the realm of aromatics for all bnew pipe smokers. a+++

Nobody has rated this review yet.

schnorrer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
schnorrer (14)
★★★★
Medium to Strong Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Where have you been all my life? That was my initial reaction after lighting my first bowl. It has been a happy relationship ever since.

I could be monogamous with this Virginia until my last puff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
★★★★
Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

Top notch Virginia, maybe the best one out there. Outstanding. Somehow similar to FVF.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Arzmordus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arzmordus (5)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I found the aroma to be tolerable at best. Slightly sweet, but also a hint of something else I can't put my finger on. Whatever it was though it made me feel nauseous. After letting it dry for a few hours it lit easily enough. It had virtually no flavor though. This wasn't even worth finishing the bowl. I canned the remainder of it I have and will let it age for a few months then I'll try it again. Hopefully it'll will mature well. Most likely I just prolonged throwing it out a few months.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Nick O'Teen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nick O'Teen (90)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

Straight virginias are not my favorite smokes, so when I enjoy a virginia as much as I enjoy Old Gowrie, it must be a good one.

I agree with those who describe the taste as "oatish". This is a remarkably cool burner for a virginia and is a very satisfying smoke.

Old Gowrie has opened my eyes (and tastebuds) to how good a straight virginia can be.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipers Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipers (19)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

This is a high quality virginia that has a rich taste and complex flavours. Highly recommended. i've also noticed that knowing what pipe to smoke a particular tobacco and how in general to smoke is just as important as your tobacco choice. I smoke this in a Loewe Apple. I would also leave the tin open (but capped)for a day or 2 before trying.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

hagen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hagen (91)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Tolerable

Four years aged tin: An unforeseen development. Very recommended as a blend for the cellar (and it ages a lot better than the other Rattray's Virginias).

05.13.2007. having now become better acquainted with the wonderful virginia tobaccos from sam gawith, these german/danish tobaccos pale in comparison. they almost appear like goopy aromatics. also, the effect of my baking the tobacco seems to have somehow worn off. downgraded seriously.

04/23/2007. i was about to throw out the tin, having only smoked 1/4 of its boring, almost sickening, content, when i thought "what the heck, perhaps it can be somewhat saved by baking it for 6 hours at 80C." so, i baked it, let it rest for a day, and tried a smoke of it. and lo and behold, a completely different creature: the one-dimensional, nauseating, caramely flavour had magically changed to something pointed, raisiny, malty, marlin flake-ish. it suddenly had lots of different, delightful flavours. i never saw a tobacco change so radically. aging may very well work wonders for it. upgraded from 2 to 4 stars.

03/20/2007. this is a decent if somewhat boring blend. too much sweet german caramel-vanilla topping for my taste. it certainly isn't the taste of pure virginia. all right for the beginner, i guess.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tacoeatingzebra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tacoeatingzebra (36)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Though I am primarily a smoker of blends containing latakia & oriental/turkish tobaccos, Old Gowrie will be a permanent fixture in my rotation. Everything about it comes quite close to perfection: the tin aroma, the moisture level, the room note and most importantly the taste. The taste & aroma reminds me, actually, of several of my favorite cookies rolled into one. at certain points, the taste of a rich, high quality oatmeal cookie comes through and at others it's a fig newton. There are other times that I taste a very pleasant hay-like taste. To me, Old Gowrie is tobacco and after having smoked a fair amount in recent months, I am quite eager to cellar a bit of it and also to explore some of Rattray's other offering.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

I hope I'm not double posting this review here. I just finished trying to post and my finger hit an odd key sequence and my post disappeared. I'll try to recreate what I wrote:

I just received my first can of Old Gowrie today, which I ordered based upon the recommendations in this thread. With the caveat that I've only smoked one bowl, I must say that so far I am not impressed. Has Rattray's changed the formula since the four star folks tasted it? Did I get a bad can? Have I just become set in my tastes? Who knows?

Upon opening, I found the tobacco to be very damp, so I let the can sit open for a few hours before loading my first bowl. I found the can aroma to be very pleasant with just a slight sweet smell. Blackwood's Flake is my favorite Virginia to date, so I find myself comparing all other Virginias to it. However, I hate the smell of BF despite how much I love it as a smoke. This stuff smells great in the can, but doesn't compare to BF in taste for me. I know this is a trivial comment, but the can printing also lacks any character. For a premium priced tobacco, the can looks cheap. Single color and poor printing on cheap cardboard. Ultimately, I found that the tobacco was as plain as the can.

It packed well, with the cut being somewhat finer that that of other 'flake type' Virginias such as BF. After a toasting light and a light tamp, it lit into a nice full, creamy smoke with...almost no flavor. It completely lacks the depth, character and taste of BF.

I figured I'd give it some time to develop as I smoked through the bowl, but found that it did not get any more complex. I found myself drawing a little too hard, probably in an attempt to coax some flavor, but just started getting a hint of bite instead. Ultimately, I regressed back to my usual Virginia tempo, gently drawing in a relaxed and unhurried manner. I saw smoke coming from my draws, but will be darned if I'd know that the pipe was lit if I was blindfolded. The taste did not match the volume and density of smoke.

As I progressed through the bowl, the taste did become more spicy, but in a way that most tobaccos do as the combustion products build up on the unburned tobacco in the bowl.

Again, this was only my first bowl, but I found it to be much less than satisfying. I'll revisit this post as I work through the can, but may find it difficult to choose this tobacco as my relaxation smoke as long as I have cans of BF in my stash. In fact, I'm going in and opening a new can og BF now for tomorrow night.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mystic Rune Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mystic Rune (35)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

In the tin, Old Gowrie is a medium and light brown broken flake with a very musty aroma of Alfalfa Hay and Oats. It comes a tad moist to my liking so I dry it out a bit before smoking. Once dried, it packs easily as a broken flake right out of the tin or when rubbed out for small bowled pipes. A charring light with a few gentle tamps and a re-light is enough to keep things going nicely. The initial flavor is subtle, but develops moderate depth as the smoke progresses through the first third of the bowl. By mid bowl the oat like flavor is fully developed and the aroma is quite musty. The flavor remains consistent through the entire bowl, burning cool, clean and dry all the way down into a fluffy grey ash without any hint of tongue bite. In short, a very consistent and comfortable light to medium flavored Virginia that always satisfies.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tennessee texan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tennessee texan (21)
★★☆☆
Medium to Strong Medium Medium to Full Tolerable

I am sure this is a good tobacco for VA lovers. It's just not for me. I did not like the taste and found it on the harsh side. Burns hot. If you like Virginia tobaccos, try it. All of the positive reviews can't be wrong.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Ego Archive Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ego Archive (14)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Well now that I have a little over a half dozen bowls of this particular blend under my belt, I think I have begun to get a feel for my thoughts on this weed.

First off like I said before, I'm really surprised that this is a straight Virginia, it's very smooth for a Virginia. I started my first few tries of this blend in my two Brylon pipes, as I tend to percieve a more neutral taste of the tobacco in them, or at least I think I do. With this blend I found myself seeing if I had lit the bowl, or if I had a hole in the pipe, as I recieved almost no taste from the tobacco. When I switched to Briar pipes I found the body to really fill out for this tobacco. I'm not sure why that happens, but that's been my experience.

For the course of the trial I have primarly been smoking this blend from a wide Willard pot, I wonder if this may not do better in a smaller bowl.

First light- This leaf burns fairly easily to the light, but that is because I have gotten in the habit of letting it dry for 10-15 minutes before packing it up. It comes out of the tin fairly moist, but has a very nice, soft feel to it. After a first light, tamp and relight, it tends to burn fairly smooth and evenly, if just slightly hot. The taste is just slightly sweet, but largely woody, and spicey.

Mid Bowl- The tobacco sweetens a little more about mid bowl, and loses a little of the spiciness; however other then that, it largely remains the same wood/earthy taste I have come to expect.

End of Bowl- Near the end of the bowl this blend tends to roughen up just a little bit, and has some issues staying lit, but all in all it doesn't change too much. I have noticed that the sweetness, and spicy notes tend to fade way to the back, but it still carries a measure of the wood/earthy tones I have tasted throughout the smoke.

It burns to a nice fluffy white and grey ash that tamps easily.

Room Note- This tobacco has almost no room note that I can discern, the thin note I smell as I smoke it is somewhat spicy, and very pleasant.

The big issue I have with this blend, is chemistry. It fries my tongue like the dickens and tends to leave my mouth raw for the rest of the evening, and next morning. I really like this blend but I don't think I will be picking up more as my mouth just can't take it. I will cellar this up, and hopefully in a year it will shine for me.

This is a solid 3 stars for me, unfortunately unless aging helps with the bite, I cannot see it making it's way into my rotation.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

speckchaser Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
speckchaser (22)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

My first Rattray blend to try,Well I'll definitely try more.This is one of the smoothest virginias I have ever tried.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Steameng Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Steameng (1)
★★★★
Very Strong Extremely Mild Full Pleasant

I have tried many, many Virginia's and this is the best. It's not the best by far. It's just darn good. I find most Virginias to be good. Actually that is about all I smoke. Sometimes if I feel like having a mild smoke I will but I'll usually go for Virginia. I like it because of it's age. It's a very old blend and I feel I am smoking something that guys like Washington may have smoked. I also get compliments on it's room note. Which surprised me at first back when I didn't know how to pack it right and I thought it was the harshest stuff to be smoked!

Enjoy, Mr. Bush

Nobody has rated this review yet.

WoodWright Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
WoodWright (3)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

After reading many of the glowing reviews about Old Gowrie and wondered if this tobacco was as good as most everyone thought. This for in my pipe smoking experience I have tried more than 100 different tins, all brands and all types, so I don?t get excited about any blend on the first few tries. I judge after smoked several blows allowing it be exposed to air and the moister to adjust to my liking. At this time I classify, #1 Order more. #2 smoke the balance of the tin and then decide. #3 sit on the shelf to try again (hoping I will like it better later, which seldom happens). #4 sit on the shelf for a bad day that I would not enjoy any blend. #5 put it in the compost pile and hope it don?t contaminate the rotting vegetation. #6 give it to someone I don?t really like who smokes drug store pipes or tobacco. I classified Old Gowrie, #1 and ordered more both in bulk and tins. Old Gowrie is a welcome change. Some have describe it as grassy, fruity sweet, fruity, dessert-like, figs, monotone, complex and some aromatic and it may be all of these but I judge tobacco by how well it smokes. Old Gowrie smokes great, stays constant no matter if bulk or tined, I described it as great tobacco. Highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lisztman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lisztman (15)
★★☆☆
Very Mild None Detected Very Mild Unnoticeable

Having heard kudos and recommendations all over for the legendary Old Gowrie, I purchased a tin.

I'm obviously going against the grain here. Or maybe I got a tin from who-knows-what-storage. As far as freshness goes, it comes in a pop-top dogfood can with the vinyl reseal cap. This may or may not be a better idea than the vacuum-packed twist-offs -- a dent in one of those somewhat ruined a nice can of Orlik GS a month back. On the other hand, once opened, it's probably not as good a seal. Ah well.

It's fully rubbed out. This means you have to repack it to an appropriate density to get it to burn properly. In my case, I can't generate a proper draw from it -- if I tamp it in tightly enough to sustain burning without huffing and puffing, it either clogs the shank, or, once I finally got it going to my satisfaction, it burned so hot that the bowl of my moderately delicate pipe became dangerously hot (for the health of the bowl). I'll try it in a heavier pipe, but I'm not holding my breath that this miraculously transforms it.

It's not flavored. It also has nearly no flavor of its own, and might be as much hay as tobacco. There are mild flavorful Virginias out there that I've raved over -- the aforementioned Orlik Golden Slices, F&T's Vintage, Iwan Ries' slices, Reiner 71, and so on. Maybe someone can convince me I just got burned on this one tin. But the tobacco likely won't be.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

RMBittner Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
RMBittner (66)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Much has already been said, so...

Full of flavor and rich in aroma, I find this one particularly satisfying -- especially after it's been out of the tin and in a jar for a little while. I primarily focus on Balkans and English blends, but I like to have one or two Virginias constantly in the rotation: This has become one of my mainstays, and I'm eager to see how it ages in 5-20 years.

I haven't tried Marlin Flake yet, so I can't definitively place Old Gowrie properly in the Rattray's triumvirate of outstanding Virginias. I can say, though, that I personally find it both mellower and richer than Hal o' the Wynd, which comes off a tad harsh to me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Cole Porter. First thing that came to my mind with the first draw-- Cole Porter. There was the distinct taste of chocolate and then, as the bowl warmed and I drew a few more puffs I heard the cigarette girl call out, ?Cigars. Cigarettes. Tiparillos.? There was the flavor of a cigar, the chocolate was gone and I had to remind myself that this was pretty much a straight Virginia, and a damn good one at that without smarting the tongue, and some other things coming through, as well, like black pepper and then it came to me: this ?Old Gowrie? is just one of those tins, just one of those crazy flings. And what a tin of tobacco this seems to be turning out to be-- burns well, great room note, consistently pleasurable flavor. I know that some, as Pkloop says, stuff a clump into their pipe, but this really deserves to be rubbed out nicely and before you know it, you?re enjoying a complex not complicated smoke. Maybe, as was pointed out, this is the New ?Old Gowrie.? No matter. There?s plenty to enjoy about this tobacco and Amen. Here's hoping we meet now and then. It was great fun, but it was just one of those tins.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Well, it's pretty much all been said. I had been in the latakia/english blend rut for a while and this was the first straight VA that I ever got. It's absolutely an excellent smoke. The aroma is wonderful, it packs and burns very well, and I haven't gotten any bite at all. There's a reason why this one is so highly rated. Enjoy! RF

Nobody has rated this review yet.

latakiahaze Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
latakiahaze (11)
★★★☆
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

This is a very pleasant VA which makes a nice change in rotation from my English and Oriental blends. A very sweet flake which has a wonderful tin aroma and pays for a little airing out. Always burns well and is very easy to pack, so I suspect this would be a great smoke for a newcomer to pipes. Sometimes a vague lemon grass hint with a subtle nutty tang this generally smokes uniformly through the bowl with no dramatic phases in flavour. A good solid virginia which I wholeheartedly recommend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pkloop Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pkloop (41)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

An excellent straight VA. My sample was originally opened about a year & 1/2 ago and then placed in a mason jar.

Appearance: The dark brown tobacco arrives in a broken flake presentation. It smells like fresh cut hay..very natural..very nice. I could sit & smell the jar all day. Wonderful aroma.

Packing: I usually take a pipe's worth out of the jar and then break it up. I suppose one could just fold & stuff a clump in but I prefer it more fully rubbed out. It does come moist..as others have mentioned..and may require some drying time. I prefer my tobacco a bit moist anyway, but the burn sucks here if this isn't allowed a bit of air time.

Lighting: Simple 3 step. Char-light/tamp/relight and there ya go..Unless you packed it straight outta the tin. If so you can expect to have some troubles getting this weed to light..

Smoking: Once lit and smoking you can expect a wonderfull experience! OG tastes excellent. Sometimes the VA sweetness comes in othertimes a grassy/hay taste..and still othertimes a smooth creamy smoke. As others have mentioned this one seems to taste slightly diffrent everytime I smoke it. I too have even had the lemony-citrus taste show up ever so lightly while smoking. An exceptional smoke every time. Bite? Nope..no bite even when smoked a tad wet or when your puffing cadence is a tad to fast.

Finish: This seems to finish strong for me. As if all the flavors of the bowl blend together in one final hurrah before going to ashes...and speaking of the ash..it burns to a nice grey/white with no wet dottle to be found.

All & all probably one of the finest straight Va's ever produced & certainly one of my favorites. Highly recommended..grab a few tins & cellar alot more!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

SopwithCamel Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SopwithCamel (255)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

This stuff will show you why people bother to smoke pipes in the first place.

The other reviewers have done an excellent job. I really can't add anything. A superb tobacco.

Addendum: I have tried DGT with Old Gowrie with wonderful results. Marvelous stuff. My choice for the desert island.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipe-arazzo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipe-arazzo (71)
★★★★
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

This was very strong when I first opened it, and it made me woozy. Also, it was too wet and because I live in a humid environment, I had to put it in the oven at low heat for a few minutes to make it smokeable. But I could tell that this was high quality, so I put the jar in the closet for a few months.

What a difference that made! This is definitely robust enough to take extended aging, and certainly for the relatively short time I put it away. To think that it might not have yet reached its peak!

It is now VERY sweet, it burns beautifully, and the nicotene content has settled down to tolerable levels. This has to go in my top five virginias, and there are some darn good one's I have tried out there. Simply a joy to smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lensman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lensman (30)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Strong

A pipe-weed that is the culmination of the highest quality leaf and blending savvy. Upon opening a fresh tin, I removed enough to fill a bowl and left it to air for two hours, which presented the moisture level I prefer. The tin aroma is slightly sweet, grassy, earthy. The smoking experience is beyond my wordsmithing ability, and would most properly be delegated to the poets. As others have remarked, I too find each smoking experience to be pleasantly unique, with taste sensations rising to the heavenly realms. There is complexity by the layer, nuance by the puff. I find OG to be the benchmark of matured VAs. There is a slight bite, less than I usually experience with VA blends, but there nonetheless. I also receive complaints regarding the room note, and notice a tendency for the aroma to linger in my beard and clothing. None of this can diminish my admiration for this blend. It ranks in the top few of my favorite VAs.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tin Man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tin Man (14)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

My first straight VA. Very consistent walnut brown ribbons. Very easy to pack and light. Smells wonderful. Very nice, natural sweetness. Smoking experience varies from a natural, whole grain sweetness, to a pleasantly sharp citrus (like grapefruit), to an intense black walnut flavor. Seems that different aspects of these characteristics come to the fore on different days. Very good stuff!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

You have to be careful reviewing tobaccos like this. Many people love this blend, myself included. Opening the tin, this tobacco smells better than just about any other blend blend I've ever tried. I love the rubbed out flake cut of this stuff. Very easy to pack and light. All the other reviewer's descriptions of the taste are right on. Grassy, earthy, citrus-like, it doesn't get any better than this. This stuff is so good I don't like to smokeit too often. It's more of an occasional treat for me. I would advise anyone who likes this stuff to age a couple of tins, it gets much better with age.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Maimonides Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Maimonides (70)
★★☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

faintly sweet, grassy, oat like -lemon?? complex and never boring.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Le Fumeur Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Le Fumeur (10)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

A classic VA, though on the medium to dark side, not full dark. Very elegant and classy blend. If you like the sweet fullness of VA, try it.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Guyrox Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Guyrox (131)
★★☆☆
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

I started in the Rattray's world with Old Gowrie. The description said "Full Dark Virginia, ready -rubbed", so I was full of hope and anticipation when I received and hurriedly opened my first tin. But those noble and positive feelings became disappointment: I was surprised to discover a light to medium brown tobacco with a predominant grassy smell!!! So much for Dark, I started mumbling in a grumpy fashion.

Alright, I told myself, so be it. C'est la vie. I must take this with philosophy and remain strong. Worse things happen, but I'm sure you all understand how it feels when you've been expecting the tobacco for more than a week and had all those marvelous expectations...that might not be fulfilled. Ah well, I got over it: after all, it's a Rattray's tobacco. It certainly still is a very good start. The flakes are already broken down in a convenient size, they barely need extra rubbing before filling.

Although this blend is way too mild for me, it is still very nice - of course, it's Rattray's!!! and, thus, of outstanding quality. Old Gowrie smokes extremely well, has just a tiny sweet taste that puts a smile on my grumpy soul but I needed to pay a lot of attention to my smoking in order to get a real satisfaction out of it. It smokes dry all the way down, and has no detectable flavoring. My wife - I can't help invoking her, I smoke mostly inside, at home, so she's my witness- loves the room note of Old Gowrie, just like Marlin Flake's...but this about Old Gowrie, right?

So, to summarize, I will not rebuy Old Gowrie, for the simple reason that it is too mild for my own taste. It's still a gorgeous straight VA that will make people happy. A great tobacco for beginners in VA's!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mel51us Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mel51us (47)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Old Gowrie is my first foray into the world of straight Virginia blends. On opening the tin, I found a mix of dark and light tobaccos, and the aroma of oats, hay and molasses. ( Not unpleasant, very reminiscent of my days in Texas riding horses) A bit moist, I loaded a pipe, let it air for about 30 minutes before I lit up. OG lit easily with a charring light, a tamp and then a second match. Very good flavor. I understand this blend has been around for a long time, and I can see why. The new pipe smoker might find this a bit strong, but I think it is a very nice change of pace from the Latakia blends I normally prefer. This is a blend that is well worth the money.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

As a relatively novice pipe smoker - I've had excellent good luck with this tobacco- easy to rub out, pack, light and keep lit. And its been well worth the limited effort.. I find this blend creamy, with grass/hay and citrus overtones. Seems much better toward the middle and bottom of the bowl. I will continue to return to this.. Also does not stink up the apartment (much less than a cigarette, for some reason).. Can sneak in a bowl before the girlfriend shows up.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

tonyg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
tonyg (103)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

My introduction to Virginias came by way of the top rated Rattray's. Old Gowerie is as good a Virginia that can be found today. It is equal to or better than many tobaccos costing much more.

As good as it is out of the tin, I found that after the first smoke, letting it rest for a week or two will improve the flavor. Of course, attention must be paid to the moisture level as it can be too moist when first opened.

Most highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Prospero Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Prospero (3)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Flowers, spices, butter and butterscotch notes. Hints of citrus, grass, nuts an wax. Try this with Glenmorangie 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Brutos Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Brutos (11)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I am a smoker of Latakia blends most of the year, swithing to VAs in the warm months. My staple is SG Full Virginia Flake but recently ordered a tin each of Old Gowrie, Marlin and Hal o the Wynd to try. After one month of comparison and letting the tobaccos dry a little, Old Gowrie has my #1 vote, then a tie between Marlin and HOTW. There are strong similarities (dried figs, raisins, oatmeal, brown sugar), and all are very good, and all benefit from time in an opened tin. Marlin tends gets stronger and slightly bitter toward the end, HOTW gets sharper on the tongue, while OG remains very constant right to the end leaving a nice dry ash. It has the oatsy aroma and VA sweetness from start to finish. All three come rubbed out/ broken to varying degrees and I would prefer if these came as solid flakes so I could adjust the burn rates and smoking qualities to suit outside wind, temperature etc. I give all these three very high marks.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Well I feel I have turned a corner. I finally tried Old G. Wish I had tried it sooner. This is a wonderful, sweet, tastful, history laden blend that just has everything going for it. Open the tin to a wonderful aroma, and presents a very nicely- ready rubbed tobacco. A full pipe lasts a good amount of time, and benifits from DGT. Breath smoking or power puffing and I got no tongue bite, but flavors do increase and intensify with technique. Got it from a J&R for $7.95 for the 100oz tin. Like getting a RollsRoyce for the price of a Hyundai. Get some!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mrmcmc Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mrmcmc (15)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Fellow Pipe Smokers:

I have had a 100 gram tin of this for about six months now. When I first smoked this, fresh out of the tin, I thought this was a very good tobacco, but not quite 4 star material. However, after six months, I have changed my mind. This tobacco has come together very nicely.

If you like this fresh out of the can, wait until you have given it some time and a little airing out. However, keep the lid on, and keep it slightly humidified to prevent drying out.

Six Months Down The Road: The flavors are rich, layered, complex, slightly sweet, slightly natural. Please take your time smoking this, and savor the complexity, cause it is there fellow smokers. Room note ain't bad either. Added benefits, works well in different pipes.

Highly recommended, and one of the best there is!!!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

VAman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
VAman (26)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This is a fine smoke. i like it it the morning, at night and any time in between, i like it dry or just out of the tin. I recomend this tobacco to anyone who loves a good VA.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

OPCElder Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
OPCElder (24)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

What a sweet tasting Virginia. This stuff is nice, right down to the bottom of the bowl. Packs well, lights well, tastes fantastic! A keeper!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

raadman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
raadman (31)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Another must try for Virginia smokers...straight, no nonsense flavor...went right into my rotation with Veermaster. I suggest you let this air out a bit otherwise there will be some steam in your future.

Peterson Baskerville

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paulinus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paulinus (3)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Pleasant

Superb virginia for the morning or early afternoon: rasins & hay out of the cannister, toasted grain & citrus fruit in the pipe.

Especially effective as a restorative with its natural companions, a fine continental pilsner or Belgian white ale.

Refreshing & classic.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

loosewatches Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
loosewatches (108)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Aside from the last can I bought (blended By), this has always been fairly consistant, regardless of who blended it or where. I notice a fairly wide variance in what's probably vintage, but the flavor is always in the zone. The nic level in Old Gowrie is right where I like it. Puff for taste, inhale for buzz.

Slowly toked, this is an Oatish Virgina. Smoked fast, it's pretty grassy and sweet, but tough on the tounge. Either way, I rub it just a little on its way from can to bowl. I also leave the can open an hour or so to dry a little before I smoke it.

I only load what I can smoke at one lighting, since this is the worst DGT tobacco since Dunhill Three Year Matured (that's gonna be a fun review) Left to sit and re-lit Old Gowrie is nothing but bitter ashes for me. Doesn't matter if the bowl is half full or half empty, I can't get past the first draws and the wet ashtry aroma.

That aside this is a very friendly tobacco. Always passes the wife test, 'course she smoke a pipe too, sometimes. I hear only good things about the room aroma.

In my neck of the woods this is not the most popular. So I've gotten a few cans with, i'd guess from the dust on the lid, at least a few years of age. This good both aged and new. --- I have to drive an hour to buy Old Gowrie or wait for my father to ship it from the States with my other staple, Full Virginia Flake. More on that elsewhere. It's worth a drive; it's worth a wait.

great stuff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

gnossos Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
gnossos (39)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

I was in Virginia over the last weekend, and picked up a 100g tin of Old Gowrie for $7. I think it's time to move. The same tin where I live is $18.

Anyways, I've been enjoying it greatly. It has a pleasant taste and is good for lazy Saturday mornings. It probably could be an all day smoke, but I don't like the idea of an all-day smoke - I certainly don't want my taste buds to become accustomed to this and for it to lose some of its special quality.

It burns great, I've xmoked it out of my Bjarne apple and my Lorenzo bulldog and it's quite nice in both. I put it in as it, no rubbing out. I think that I may have to end up making this a staple - but I haven't tried Marlin Flake yet so I'm holding off til then.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Badge#147 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Badge#147 (1)
★★★★
Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant

I can't say many more good things then have already been said about this tobacco. I give it a 10/10 rating. This is a must for the Virginia lovers out there. I will always have a tin of this on hand.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (140)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

Bright Virginia flavor, I cannot praise it or describe it better than that. This is the one to start out with. It is also one you will stay with, this was my first Rattrays tobacco and it led me to Marlin Flake, for which I am forever grateful. When I want to smoke a bright Virginia this the the one I reach for. Wonderful tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

DUPE.629 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
DUPE.629 (133)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

January 2006.

I'll keep this review short.

Everything positive,that has been previouly written about Old Gowrie is 100% correct.I can not fault,this wonderful tobacco in anyway.

More than highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Meerschaum Man Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Meerschaum Man (85)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This blend is a fine start for those who desire to learn appreciation of fine Virginia leaf. Mild and soothing with true character, you cannot smoke it and be disappointed. I prefer it's big brother Marlin Flake, which to me is a more intense version. Novice and experienced smoker alike can benefit from the lessons given by this blend in the fine treatment of Virginia leaf and the sweetness from whence it's fame is derived. Easy to light, it's a good smoke from beginning to end without bowl residue. This is a comfort smoke whose theme is to be found in other Rattray blends. Always keep some of this in your supply.

Meerschaum Man Smoking an Altinok Smooth Canadian

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pipepundit Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipepundit (168)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

Refreshing when refreshing is needed, stimulating when stimulation is needed, consoling when consolation is needed, promoting repose when repose is needed, Old Gowrie deserves all the encomiums it has earned. Of autumnal mellow ripeness.

A tobacco for all seasons.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

anixi Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
anixi (17)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Wonderful stuff, burns well to gray ash, watch for a little VA bite. The flavor is rich and nice in cold weather.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

ajaj Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
ajaj (69)
★★★★
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This is pretty good stuff, except for the PPG. Straight forward virginia which is very similar to SG Best Brown Flake, McKetchup 27, and McKetchup Christmas Cheer series except it does not have the tart of the three. This is ok. It's unassuming and states, "I'm decent, just smoke and enjoy me without much thought." No bite and much, much better than the aromatic-like Marlin Flake. DGT does nothing except make it a little ashy tasting, whereas the above three others are DGT heaven. This is the "can't go wrong" virginia and recommend it to first time virginia smokers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Collezionista Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Collezionista (59)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Old Gowrie, in all its apparent simplicity, is one tobacco I never tire of. This is my staple tobacco, far and way the best all day blend I've encountered. I keep a 100g tin in my car and one in my room as well. This wonderful blend is really mild and sweet, nothing but unadultered Virginia leaf. Needless to say, given that its a Rattray blend, the quality of this tobacco is simply stunning. Its ready-rubbed and smokable right out of the can, even slightly moist as it tends to arrive. Upon opening the can, one is greeted with the smell of fresh cut hay or alfalfa - a very pleasant, natural smell. There is the signature Virginia tongue bite at the lighting but this tends to abate shortly, and is gone after the first tamp and relight. The flavor is subtle, but increasingly dynamic as the smoke progresses. Many of the above reviews mention an oat-like flavor, which is certainly present, but what really piques my interest is a lilting, lemongrass-tinged sweetness that weaves its way through the aformentioned oat backrop. Old Gowrie burns evenly, only a couple relights are needed. It can get a little wet toward the bottom but even the moisture is pleasant to the tongue if it gets to the mouthpiece - that lemongrass taste again! Old Gowrie is the one blend that never lets me down, whether in a workaday corncob or a fine Italian handmade. This blend has increased my love of pipe smoking manyfold, and along with Marlin Flake and Hal O the Wynd, made me a Rattray fanatic.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

dprovons Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
dprovons (11)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Old Gowrie was the first tin of tobacco I ever purchased. Before you get too excited, I only began smoking a pipe in March of 2005. I had tried a tobacco shop blend, a sample of Dunhill 965, and a sample of Butera Sweet Cavendish, then bought a tin of OG on recommendation from local tobacco shop guy. From the first bowl, it was not only very different from the other stuff I had tried, but it was what I had been looking for, without realizing it (until I tasted it). The reviews here say it all already, but I just wanted to add my vote on this awesome virginia. I don't know what it means that this stuff is prepared "in the old way", but I love it, whatever it is. I could smoke this any time of the day or night. It is ALWAYS what I reach for when I go fishing with my father-in-law because he likes the smell and it just go so well with crisp morning air on the lake.

The quality of the tobacco is great, the burn qualities are very much to my liking, room note is not offensive to others, and the taste is smooth, sweet virginia goodness with a nutty, raiseny overtone (quite nice0. This is a tobacco that is guaranteed to be on hand in my home at all times. Very highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

lustra Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
lustra (170)
★☆☆☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

In the interests of brevity, I'll only add to the comments of my esteemed reviewing colleagues, Tantric and Eulenberg, by saying that Old Gowrie has all the characteristics one could hope for in une seconde dans les duels de la vie: calm, steadiness, discretion, and utter distinction. It is impossible not to smoke this tobacco without personifying it fondly. Update 6/2005: The last two tins of this tobacco that I've smoked have been quite different from the Old Gowrie I reviewed. The "new" Old Gowrie doesn't have that wonderful oaty flavor, is much harsher, and burns hotter. I have smoked 2 100-gram tins of the news stuff in a wide variety of pipes with the same results across the board. Two pipesmoking acquaintances, one of legenedary status on this site, confirm my findings. Too damned bad. No stars for Rattray's.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

4/24/05 - Old Gowrie (bulk, new)

Tin: OG presents itself as a pretty, mostly-rubbed, medium brown tobacco. The tin note is pleasant, though not particularly distinctive - just a slightly sweet, natural-smelling VA that suggests a nice middle-of-the-road VA experience ahead. As usual with Rattray's, it's too moist for my liking in the tin, but it dries out easily enough.

Pack: OG packs easily into any size pipe. As usual with Rattray's again, this is a very carefully processed tobacco - I get very little waste in the form of chunks, stems, or dust. Always nice...

Lighting/Burning: Simply one of the easiest, cool-burning straight VA's I've ever smoked. Lights easily, burns evenly, stays cool and dry. Top notch in this department.

Flavor: OG's flavor stays true to its appearance - a medium strength, natural VA with just a bit of sweetness. Others have described it as "toasty" and "oatish". Those seem accurate enough to me. I don't taste the flavor similarities to HOTW and MF that others seem to, however. In both of those, the red and stoved components are more prominent. OG is more straightforward, perhaps more "monotone" (though not in a negative sense). If anything, OG reminds me slightly of Tordenskjold VA Slices in its simplicity, though I like OG quite a bit more. The flavor develops nicely, though not dramatically, down the bowl leaving a barely discernible, but pleasant aftertaste.

Pipe/Technique: While I've yet to put down a bowl of OG, it does seem a bit choosy in the pipes it prefers, and I haven't yet figured out any kind of system to it. Medium (big Group 4 to small Group 5) pipes seem to be the best bets. For one reason or another, OG comes off rather differently if the chamber is too narrow or too wide - somewhere between 3/4" and 7/8" appears to work best for me. As with all of my flakes, I dry it out to just-barely-sticks-when-compressed moisture after rubbing out completely.

Overall: All of the above sounds rather non-committal, but in fact I really love this stuff. When I think about OG analytically, I don't come up with anything exciting to say. But whenever I have a tin open, it disappears in record time. And that, I suppose, is the ultimate test. As Collezionista stated in his review, I never tire of this stuff. And LoisKelly's comparison to an old shoe is perfect. Old Gowrie may not be flashy, but it always works for me. Absolutely a desert-island tobacco, and an easy recommendation as a first-rate VA for the veteran or novice alike. 4/4

Nobody has rated this review yet.

English Bulldog Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
English Bulldog (10)
★★★☆
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Upon opening the tin one is greeted with a sweet natural smelling tobacco. Not much has been done to this fine Virginia Flake but certainly a little something has been added to make it just a touch more palatable. It crowns beautifully when lit producing voliminous plumes of thin white smoke, usually only one charring light is required-although it should be left about an hour or so before smoking or it can be a bit too moist and stubborn towards the end. 1st third-Not much can be said about the intital taste of this blend as there isn't much to be found. There is an intital sugariness that stays with the straight tobacco taste, not brimming with flavour but certainly "toasty" if it can be described as such.

2nd third-upon relight flavour becomes slightly more pronounced, an 'oatish' flavour is the most apt way to describe it as other reviewers have alluded to. I had to use a pipe cleaner half way through to stop a gurgle but the taste remains clean and cool, (provided one rubs out the flakes, just enough to separate them) without too much throat tickle.

last 3rd-unless one has packed the bowl correctly (as I often fail to do), Old Gowrie can be a bit fickle and often goes out on me. By now the flavour has become noticeably more rounded and a touch harsh but not oppressively so like Dunhill's Light Flake which can be a bit astringent towards the bottom of the bowl.

Conclusion: For me this is indubitably a finely crafted tobacco but it isn't outstanding in any particular way. I would describe it as good home cooking, uncomplicated but welcome nonetheless. For me if I were to choose a relatively mild virginia flake I would opt for Orlick Golden Sliced, probably because it has been mellowed by the addition of some burley. So while not a regular feature in my rotation, I might keep some on hand for the right moment. An enjoyable smoke.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

An old favorite of mine, from the Perth days. A mottled broken flake which can be rubbed out or packed as is, depending upon the pipe size and smoking conditions. Just a calm, sedate, full bodied flavor, with just enough layering to keep your interest throughout the bowl. Cool and dry at all times. Bravo K & C, for restoring its former glory after the Danish disaster.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Tiepolo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tiepolo (40)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Certainly in the all time top 10 virginias and my personal preference in the current Rattrays line. Comes very moist in the tin and stays very moist in the tin! I have a 100g tin open a year now that has like 10g in the bottom and still I have to dry it in the open. Makes my briars a little hot, but no bite or gurgle despite my generous puffing! Nice greyish-white ash in the end of bowl. Slightly stronger than medium and some brilliant moments of Virginia heaven many times during the bowl. When Kohlhasse will do me the favor and put a little less humectants in it, it will definitely challenge my personal pole position. Absolutely recommended but remember: dry it, dry it, dry it...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Baloo Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Baloo (7)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

An old classic by Rattrays of high quality, as most of their blends. Now being manufactured by Kohlhase + Kopp in Germany, it has recovered from the Danish disaster.

This is simply a plain VA, you can use well as an all-day-smoke. It packs easily from the tin as a broken flake or can be rubbed out for smaller bowls, lights with the first match and burns down very cool with no tongue bite to a greyish ash. Old Gowrie may appear a bit one-dimensional to those who are used to stronger VA´s like HOTW or Marlin Flake but for my opinion this is a great entry in the range of the Virginias.

Highly recommended to all VA lovers.

9 out of 10 in my personal rating.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Paddy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Paddy (125)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

If you light straight Virginias, you will like Old Gowrie a lot. I smoke it very dry. It is smooth, toasty and tastey. I compare this tobacco to Samuel Gawith's Medium Virginia Flake. The taste of these tobaccos differ somewhat, but both offer a similar, delicate, straight Virginia sweetness that makes puffing the pipe an exquisite pleasure. Most highly recommended. Paddy.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Arashi Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Arashi (5)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Some reviewers describe this as having an "oatish" flavor, and I agree. A slightly sweet, very smooth, and very easy to smoke ready rubbed VA flake that I always have on hand. It smokes well right from the tin and doesn't need any drying out. It has very little tendency to bite and would be a good choice for a beginning VA smoker.

When I don't want any suppress, and just want a good smoke without any fuss, this is one of the first tobaccos I reach for. I'm stocking up to see how it ages.

Highly recommended!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

September 2004

This is probably my favorite straight Va blend, on account of its terrific burn properties and full, pure tobacco flavor (without, as many of the above reviewers have observed, the huge tang and tongue bite of other straight Vas). Unlike my usual practice with Va flakes, I did not rub this out at all, but simply stuffed my Radice Silk Cut Bent Dublin until full. The bowl required one light only!

While I don't find it as intersting as some of the better V/P blends, OG has a wonderful straight-up flavor that was perfect for the chilly Minnesota September night on which I last smoked it--on my deck, of course, as wife won't suffer pipe smoking in the house (even though she thinks this one smells nice). Soon it will be the space heater and the garage . . .

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Beer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Beer (297)
★★☆☆
Mild to Medium None Detected Very Mild Tolerable

I read all the raving reviews here only after smoking part of the tin of this tobacco, so my expectations were quite blank: well, I don't completely agree with the comments posted. It's certainly a quality Virginia, with a tin aroma that is more reminiscent of McClelland than of other Rattrays, but it leaves me a bit flat. It's good, balanced and not too heavy, and bites less than other Virginias (but it still does a little)... but I prefer the more marked woodsiness of Hal O' The Wynd or the incredible sweetness of Marlin Flake. I can't find some really bad things to say about this tobacco, but I'll simply leave it to those with more delicate tastes than mine. There's an exception: I smoked this tobacco in a new Peterson pipe, and the sweet notes were delicious. Probably it is due to the pipe more than to the tobacco (I'll try other Virginias in it and see if the sweetness is amplified with them, too), but it was a pleasant experience. If you want to try it, please let it dry quite a bit: it is full of humectants!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Pounder 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pounder 5000 (178)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Next stop on the Rattray Va line, and now for something completely different. Just kidding, not that different anyway. But certainly a little. This baccy is as musty as a Va can be and smokes so dry I have to have something cool to sip on when I smoke it (a pale ale does wonders). The taste is all Va but without much of the customary sweetness. Kind of like C&D's Briar Fox, come to mention it. On top of this is the slightest nod to those little dried out cigars the European elite like to puff away on at dinner parties. Definitely something unique going on- ...and then it hits me. Another review I wrote a while back: Esoterica's Tilbury. These tobaccos seem to be very similiar. Old Gowrie is a little more traditional Va wise, but it seems to be in the same vein as Tilbury minus that blends Burley element.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Mr. Dottle Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Mr. Dottle (162)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Old Gowrie is an easy smoke, not complex, and, as other reviewers have noted, it does have an ?oatish? flavor, a flavor I found difficult to describe until I read these reviews. So for lack of a better term, ?oatish? it is and it doesn?t waver much from this oat-like flavor. This tobacco doesn?t bite and it would fall into the ?all-day smoke? category for sure. To paraphrase an old TV commercial: The simpler things are, the better I like them. Old Gowrie is simple, I like it??.. a whole lot!

I rate this tobacco 9.9 out of 10.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Joe Patterson Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Joe Patterson (48)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant

Does more need to be said about how outstanding this tobacco is? I think the answer is no. I totally agree with the "oat" flavor some have mentioned. Oh, and this IS one of the most well behaved Va's I have ever set fire! It is marvelous -- sitting on my porch, in the cool of the afternoon, dogs under my feet, I think I'd need little else to make for relaxing.

On a side note, I've recently added this, Black VA, Marlin Flake, HOTW, and even RRR to my "taster bar" and all have passed with flying color.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This offering by Rattray's is an easy one to love...A familiar old friend that asks for little but gives a lot. Medium to full Virginia flavor accompanied by very little bite. Easy to smoke, pleasant room note- a definite must for the Virginia lover.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

chperry Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
chperry (9)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

This is one of my favorite tinned tobaccos. I do not rub it out any furthen when smoking, just load it and light. It burns cleanly and provides nice flavor throughout, never getting acrid or bitter. Care must be taken as overzealous puffing (like when I am sitting in front of my computer working) can lead to some tongue bite. Anyone wanting to try a good, wellbehaved virginia, would be well advised to try this blend.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This tobacco delivers what a pipe smoker wants from a pipe tobacco,cool sweet full curly clouds of the tastiest leaf. This blend has really sailed the high seas.Old Gowrie was there at the sinking of a many a ship.And has been around the horn so many times it could tell you tall tales,and show you it's south seas tattoos. A hearty blend of Virginia tobaccos. Most satisfying,and calming.Ahhhh,so good!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

LoisKelly Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LoisKelly (55)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable

I don't know why I like Old Gowrie as much as I do. It doesn't stand out in any particular way. Rather, it's virtues are those of an old shoe, comforting and familiar. Perhaps it's a bit mundane, and there is no shortage of competing blends, but Old Gowrie always delivers an honest, straigtforward smoke that is charming in its own right.

Peacehaven is similar in cut and style, if somewhat zippier, and Light Flake (what the hell did they do to that blend recently?) possesses much of the same simple allure.

To say that Old Gowrie offers not much more than already stated may be taken by some as a pejorative, but there's a reason this simple, unflavored Virginia has been around for so long. It may do little to astound and amaze, but it does little wrong.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

clovis Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
clovis (2)
★★★★
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This has become my regular blend. Although there are other great virginias out there, for me OG has the perfect balance of taste, strength and aroma for an all-day smoke. Not as sweet as Marlin Flake, cooler than Best Brown, and with a better aroma than either. Now if the price would just come down...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Smoking a bowl of Old Gowrie demonstrates why the tobacco trade between England and the Colonies flourished and provided the early economic foundation of our great land. This is pure, smooth, mild Virginia tobacco of the best kind. The tobacco comes in the form of broken flakes, mostly dark in color, with a few lighter shards sprinkled throughout. Aroma from the 100 gram tin is sweet, but not excessively so. Others have described it as "grassy," but I lean more toward a "savory-fruity" impression. There is no trace of added sweetness, which is almost overwhelming in the MacBaren's Virginia No. 1 blend. Packing and lighting are easy, with no relights necessary. When freshly opened, moisture in the tin is high, so some fluffing and airing helps. The flavor is rich, smooth, Virginia all the way. There is no spiciness or tanginess as found in the stronger Virginias, but plenty of flavor here, with cool, velvety smoke. If smoked too fast, this can heat up and be rather sharp on the tongue, so just take your time and enjoy. Down past the half way mark, a very slight peppery note develops, but remains in the backround. The flavor stays rich and mellow right down to the end of the bowl. Ash is mottled gray, and drops from the pipe easily. The bowl smells fresh afterwards. I like to smoke this anytime. Old Gowrie is mild enough for a morning smoke, yet has enough depth to enjoy after dinner. Highly recommended for beginners or for a smoker who wants to try pure tobacco after smoking aromatic blends.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

This blend is like the little brother who likes to hang around "Big Brother" Marlin Flake. Upon opening the tin, you are greeted by partially rubbed out flake. Tin aroma is of hay, but not as strong or complex as Marlin Flake. Packing is easier due to the fact that it is mostly rubbed out. Lighting is a two to three vesta affair. Initial flavor is sweet Va. As you smoke this, the flavor intensifies ever so subtlely. I seem to detect a little honey flavoring in this, but it just may be the Va's used. Sometimes, the flavor reminds me of cheerios, not a bad thing though. Before you know it, you are at the end of the bowl with dry grey ash left. I have come to like Rattray's Va's very much these days and I would recommend this one as a starter blend. Not too strong, but not too bland, tongue-bite is not a problem either. This is an all-dayer. For my tastes, though I prefer Marlin Flake. Rating 4 out of 5 points. Enjoy... Update: 06-23-04 Just wanted to let say that is an outstanding medium VA mixture on its own, even though not as full as MF. Lately, in order to save my ageing MF, I have mixed a little "Dark Star" with this blend and the results are wonderful! Give it a try, Enjoy...

Nobody has rated this review yet.

chaplikc Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
chaplikc (135)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

As with all of the other Rattrays products this of very high quality. This is a very good middle of the road virginia blend. While it is not dark and heavy it is also not light and airy. The virginia used in this is quite sweet and enjoyable. The first third of the bowl realy lets a natural virginia sweetness shine through. After the first third of the bowl the sweetness begins to dissapate and a nice malty flavor starts to come through. I feel that the middle third of the bowl is where this blend starts to settle into its groove. By the end of the first third of the bowl the heat factor realy tones down and becomes more civilized, probably due from some of the high sugar content in this leaf burning off. While this blend is not monochromatic it is not very complex either. This a very good example of what a medium virginia blend should be. Highly recommended for virginia lovers.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Blackie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blackie (16)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I think the above comments all show what a fine tobacco this is. It's really useless to go into more detail when so much has already been conveyed on the brilliant, restrained and delicate flavor of this pure Virginia.

One personal observation, however: This tobacco does not even begin to unfold until it has been properly aged. An unopened tin, in the back seat of my car for about two weeks in the summer, and it tastes completely different than "off the shelf". I'm convinced that the high sugar content of the Virginia somewhat carmelizes, and/or goes through a metamorphosis that ratchets-up the flavor by about 500%.

You can age it for a decade or two in the closet, or you can put in in a very warm or hot place for much less time, and the result is magic.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Willy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Willy (75)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Just poking my head in to add tuppence. I had not smoked this for a time, but after puffing OG again for a while now I have to wonder why I took as long as I did to pick it back up again. This is one of the best VA's to come down the pike along with say...probably McC's Blackwoods Flake or Hal O' the Wynd & Brown Clunee to name a few. As others have stated, this is ONE VERY GOOD REASON to smoke a pipe. It would be surprising to not find OG in any VA smokers top ten list of tobacs. Such a rich, pleasant & tasty smoke. Works for me.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

provguy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
provguy (52)
★★★★
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

One of the best straight virginias out there. Old Gowrie is smooth, spicey and a real treat. Easy to pack and light. Burns nicely and leaves one wanting more. Exceptional!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

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

Sight: The typical Rattray round tin reveals dark, rich tobacco. Great aroma from the tin.

Touch: Still a little moist for direct smoking. This tobacco is best when thoroughly rubbed out and given time to achieve a reduced moisture level. 15 minutes is all it takes in my climate.

Taste: This is a great VA. If one wants to know what an unblemished VA should reveal, spend some time with OG. Unlike many VAs, this is not overpowering or numbing. It has a tacit purity to its sensations, and a muted honey-like artifact within the mind.

Smell: Wife: "Hmmm (curious/surprised)...It smells good out here". Yes, out here, I'm afraid. The rules are the rules ;)

Conclusions: I find this to be a great all-day smoke. It makes me smile. It is refined, great VA quality that draws me in as I puff myself into blissful contentment. The Rattray blends are very appealing to me. Being the pessimistic/worrisome individual that I am, I often feel compelled to stockpile these tins! I find the subtle differences between some of my favorite blends from this blend (OG, MF and HTW) very interesting, and since I am not a blender, I have no idea how they make it happen. The reviewers of each seem to have hit on the differences quite nicely, but I view a good strength progression to be along the lines of OG->MF->HTW. Very similar, but the intrigue lies in allowing ones palate to discern the nuances of each.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Danno Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Danno (87)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Very Pleasant

This is quickly becoming my default evening smoke. Tastes very nice in the cool Alberta winter, over a cup of tea and some quiet time. There is not much to add above and beyond the words of my fellow pipers, but that this reflective blend instills a deep appreciation in me for the easy comfort of a briar and a soothing smoke. Do try this one.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Nimrod Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Nimrod (29)
★★★☆
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Unnoticeable

This is certainly one of the nicer VA flakes that I have tried. I can't help but compare it to Hal O' The Wynd due to the similarities.

To me this seems to have less bite, less sweetness, and more of a fragrant essence than Hal O' the Wynd does. When I first started the tin it seemed like it had almost no sweetness at all, but later I could detect quite a bit. I'm not sure if this is due to drying out, or due to me getting better at smoking it properly.

Anyway, to say it has less bite certainly doesn't mean that it's biteless! This stuff still must be smoked carefully as you might expect. You have to try this stuff at least once if you're a VA fan.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BrittPark Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BrittPark (41)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

In the tin: This is a partially rubbed out flake, with a faint Virginia aroma.

Packing and Lighting: I just packed the partially rubbed out flake as it came but think upon reflection that I should have rubbed it out more. I hate flakes. Once loaded, pipe fired up quite well and stayed lit.

Flavor: Satisfying slightly sweet taste of aged Virginias. Lots of rich flavorful smoke. No bite. A very good pure Virginia blend. I would have given this 4 stars but it just doesn't make my rotation. There are enough other Virginias that I like as well as or slightly better than this, that the "ready rubbed" just doesn't make the cut.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

mailman 5000 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
mailman 5000 (60)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

This is a very fine virginia, upon first aquatence it can appear somewhat dull lacking the fireworks of flashier blends, but as your experience of this flake grows its qualities become increasingly obvious. Solid flavour with a touch of porridge/oats. As its supposed to be Scottish, porridge is closer to the mark. Relatively easy to light, a quality I like more and more in a tobacco. This is the good stuff.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

TnT Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
TnT (7)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Old Gowrie is one of the best behaved tobaccos I've ever smoked. It is tolerant of hasty packing, over puffing, under puffing, you name it. And it manages to be this tolerant and still be a flavorful smoke. I sometimes use this as an all day blend and have used it to break in new pipes (not that it builds a cake all that quickly, but just because it burns well even in new pipes).

I have found that I like it better in my briars than in my meerschaums and that if over puffed, the oatish flavor can take over.

I buy this in bulk and keep some available at all times.

A "must try" for every lover of Virginias. Highly recommended.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

BriarNorth Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BriarNorth (49)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I guess I'm just another knucklehead who got his thunder stolen where Old Gowrie is concerned, but as this is one of my favorite tobaccos, I can't resist. I've smoked this stuff at all times of the day in all kinds of weather and it always hits the spot. Though not as strong as some blends I smoke, it has enough nicotine to satisfy, and what it may lack in complexity it makes up for in honest-to-goodness flavor--a flavor whose chief attribute is it's unwavering, simple beauty from start to finish. This tobacco has such a gentle bearing that a hearty puffer like me can get right at it without a second thought. It packs easily, stays lit with one match, burns clean and won't piss off the SO. And it's true what they say: this leaf has a very relaxing effect on any man with the good sense to put it in his pipe. Try it and you'll see! A permanent resident in my briars.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (260)
★★★★
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

My 4 oz. tins of this blend have contained mainly flakes > 2" long that remain flexible and are perfect for packing without any additional rubbing out. I don't consider this a rubbed out blend. All and everything that you get with this tobacco is just great VA taste and aftertaste. Simple but smooth, cool, dry and without a hint of bite even if abused. It's easy to light and keep lit and requires little attention to obtain a most enjoyable smoke. For me, the overall strength and taste are ideal for an all day smoke. It's one of my top 5 VA flakes, so give it a try.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Skilling Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Skilling (80)
★★★☆
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

The esteemed beat me to this. Refer to all the above reviews to see how good this tobacco really is.

It's smooth straight virginia. No tangy bite or spicy overtones. Both inwhich, I like from other blends but Old Gowrie stands tall without them.

This could be an all day smoke with no hesitation or regret. This blend is different and unique and yes, "oatish" as one passes the 1/2 way mark towards bottom.

...IMO, there is no resemblence between Old Gowrie and Marlin Flake. Marlin offers more flavor and strength. I lean towards my beloved Marlin.

However, Old Gowrie is a grand old tobacco.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

howie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
howie (46)
★★★☆
Mild None Detected Full Tolerable to Strong

There are several different versions of Old Gowrie, based upon the period of manufacture. This review is specific to the Old Gowrie manufactured ?for Charles Rattray? circa 1995.

This tobacco arrived in a 100g tin, and is packaged in fairly large flakes. While there are some rubbed out elements, some flakes are as large as 2-3 inches in length by 1/2 inches wide.

I purchased this tin in 1995 and opened it in 2002. I have smoked about five bowls in several different pipes. When I first tried this, I was a bit disappointed at the lack of body, in the way of fullness of flavor. There are nice fruity notes in the initial light of the pipe, which are enjoyable, but which do not really characterize what I look for in a tobacco. However, as the bowl continues, particularly after resting for anywhere from 12 hours to several days, the flavor deepens and becomes much fuller. When smoking this, I am disappointed when I start it, but very disappointed when I finish it. In the first case, I am disappointed with the flavor, while at the end of the bowl, I am disappointed to see it go.

Despite having a rather sensitive mouth, I have experienced no bite out of Old Gowrie. One has to be careful not to push the beginning of the bowl, when there is the temptation to smoke faster due to the frugality of flavor.

A very enjoyable smoke, but not for the beginner as it requires some patience and technique to bring out the fullness of flavor.

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Eulenburg Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Eulenburg (193)
★★★★
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Not much more need be said, except that I too have long loved this old standby. Glad to see it come back from dumbed-down status. A notch less prepotent than brother MARLIN, and as simple as an old blood line. Pour le mérite.

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