Samuel Gawith Best Brown Flake

(3.39)
A firm favourite for the pipe smoker looking for a medium strength, gentle and slow burning tobacco. Manufactured using hand-stripped flue cured Virginias with no flavours added, Best Brown will reward with a cool, sweet smoke with a delectable aroma and good sidestream. Mild to medium.

Details

Brand Samuel Gawith
Blended By Samuel Gawith
Manufactured By Samuel Gawith
Blend Type Straight Virginia
Contents Virginia
Flavoring
Cut Flake
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country United Kingdom
Production Currently available

Profile

Strength
Medium
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Extremely Mild -> Overwhelming
Flavoring
None Detected
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
None Detected -> Extra Strong
Room Note
Pleasant to Tolerable
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Taste
Medium
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

3.39 / 4
158

98

29

7

Reviews

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Displaying 21 - 30 of 158 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 28, 2015 Strong None Detected Medium to Full Strong
Best Brown is a very high quality Virginia that is beautifully presented . It is a full flavor tobacco reaching the high notes of the Virginia experience . I left a jar of this tobacco in a remote place for three years and when I discovered it again it was full of bloom . Well aged this takes on Olympian qualities . With the sugars forward this is sublime . The problem with all Samuel Gawith blends is the extreme moisture present upon opening . After trying various methods over the years , none of which worked well , I have settled on a better strategy . I select a very mild Virginia flake with almost no topping , maybe Newminster flake . I mix it itno the Gawith using about 25% of the Newminster . This provides enough kindling to properly light and enjoy the tobacco . Leaving the Gawith out over night on wax paper simply did not work It became too dry and lost it's flavor . Leaving it in the can for a month just didn't reduce the moisture that much . The mild flake mix seems like the best idea .
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 12, 2008 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
Update September 12th 2008 :- I have just changed the setting on flavouring to read "Non detected" as I have been very reliably informed that "THERE IS NO FLAVOURING IN BEST BROWN FLAKE" that little gem of information came from Samuel Gawith's themselves, I stand corrected.



Updated 14 July 2008:- I mentioned I didn't like the way this was packed in the tin, also, I noticed several others have complained of Sam Gawiths thickness of flakes, since my first review I have been reliably informed(by one who has seen all)that Sam Gawith flakes are actually hand cut, some lucky fellow gets to stand in front of a whizzing blade that will happily slice through just about anything presented to it, armed only with a stick, and nerves of steel, our intrepid hero pushes the cake through the blade, so if perchance we get varying thickness of flake, this is due to the fact that he is getting near to the end of the cake. If however, on the other hand, we get bits of stick, I am told he would like them back, as his fingers are getting that bit closer.

First Reviewed 15th May 2008:- Tried this and loved it straight away, a good all day smoke, not overpowering, flavour not as full as G&H best brown flake No2, but a nice easy going smoke, I keep several tins of Sam Gawith's flakes on hand, and this is one of them. On the down side, I'm not overly impressed by the cut, call me old fashioned, I like my flake cut into neat slices, so I can take a measured amount from the tin, this looks as though it's been thrown in from fifty yards, no points for presentation, but lets face it, I didn't buy the stuff to look at and admire. Burns well, good moisture content, smokes beautifully and tastes good, I would be happy to recommend this to novice and vetran alike.
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 13, 2017 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable
There’s no other tobacco I’ve smoked that has taken me so long to review (except Full Virginia Flake) and still I do not feel confident about my assessment. With most tobaccos I smoke half of the tin or a third and even less and I feel confident at writing a review. On the other hand Best Brown Flake baffles me. I have tasted BBF tobacco from both tin and 250g box and while it was essentially the same tobacco there still were significant differences. First in color, box was much brighter (considerably lighter in color than FVF, almost as bright as Golden Glow), then the smell from bulk was pure grassy, green tea-like, while from tin it was obviously topped lightly, with tonquin I guess.

Otherwise tobaccos were similar, although I think the bulk version broken flakes were more pliable, easier to rub out and also smoked better, but this probably has to do with moisture.

My bafflement is not confined to batch variation – as I said the tobacco in different batches, despite the differences is essentially the same. The problem is that this tobacco, although at a lesser degree than FVF, is very susceptible to treatment variations: it will smoke considerably different depending on how much you dry it and how thinly you rub it out. As with FVF, I have smoked half a kilo while not feeling confident that I have got the handle of it. Still, were it not such a good tobacco, I would have given up, but then again, when BBF is good - which is not always - it’s very good!

It’s sweet like a bakery product, earthy, yeasty, surely darker flavours than Golden Glow but less yeasty than FVF, it has a nice medium strength and it gives me the feeling of smoking as natural a tobacco as any. BBF taste is unique among Virginias and it’s also very good to mix with some Orientals.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 13, 2017 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
An excellent example of a pure Virginia Flake. Samuel Gawith does this type of tobacco better than anybody else in my opinion, and these flakes are no exception.

Compared to Full Virginia Flake, Best Brown Flake is noticeably more subtle, a touch sweeter, and perhaps a bit less "chewy". I find it to be at least as enjoyable as Full Virginia Flake depending on my mood, and better than any other make's straight Va.

Like all Gawith flakes, these take a little experimentation to get right: They come overly damp (good for aging), hold moisture longer than most tobaccos, and won't burn right when freshly opened. Let it get too dry, and you lose some of the flavor and soft tones. The right moisture is different depending on whether you want to rub out or fold and stuff, and smokes a little different in large or small bowls. Thus the slightly higher level of "fuss" required to figure this flake out. You are rewarded with an excellent straight Va flavor for your troubles. When I feel I have the moisture right, relights are on par with any other flake.

In the 250g box, the value is rather decent as well for the quality of the tobacco.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 17, 2015 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
A superb Virginia flake. From the tin, the flakes are perfectly formed and firmly pressed and the tin note is sweet and bready. The initial flavor has a slight sugary quality to it, along with a delicate grassiness. The finish gives a faint hint of a topping that's quite nice and entirely reminiscent of the high note found in Full Virginia Flake. The smoke is smooth and flavorful with absolutely no harshness. Like all top notch Virginia's, Best Brown Flake saves the best for last. Down the bowl, the flavors deepen but they also liven up and hints of spice appear amongst a warm, rich woodsy flavor and creamy texture. No bones about it, Best Brown Flake is a perfectly executed blend and it presents all the hallmarks of a high quality straight darker Virginia. I still prefer the extra richness of Full Virginia Flake, but Best Brown Flake makes a very similar statement, albeit in a milder fashion.
Pipe Used: Briar
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 08, 2009 Medium None Detected Mild Pleasant to Tolerable
Top notch, as one would expect from any SG Virginias. Best Brown is milder and darker than FVF, providing more nuances and some extra depth, with no extra flavors. The purest Virginias you can find without running into blandness.

If you love sweet Virginias, this one is the perfect for a very contemplative smoke. I usually smoke FVF, IRC Flake or Old Gowrie, leaving Best Brown for completely serene occasions.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 20, 2020 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
With so many reviews published already, there is not much more to be said about this fantastic VA flake

The greatest virtue of BBF by Samuel Gawith in my opinion is that you do not tire of it over the years. What is also pretty cool about it, is that it's one of those tobaccos that come to you naturally - you don't have to spend hours on decoding its flavor profile before you start to enjoy it. So this makes BBF attractive to novice smokers as well.

The smoke is sweet, rich, earthy, full, floral (not as in Lakeland essence but as in white wine) and just downright pleasing. I really like FVF as well but to me there is no question that the throne of the best Samuel Gawith straight VA belongs to BBF. Why? Mostly because I think it is more complex and manages to strike more notes than FVF does.

4 out of 4 stars.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 06, 2021 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
When the tin is opened, elongated flakes composed of bright and dark virginias appear. These flakes are irregular in shape and frayed, as is typical for this brand. They have a perfect degree of humidity to load directly from the tin to the pipe, although this does not mean anything because this aspect can be different in each occasion, depending on the tin that touches each one. The aroma is that of a mild virginia, mainly of hay and bread in the baking process.

Once the tobacco has been rubbed and the pipe loaded, the tobacco shows its high quality, burning well and without producing bites. The flavor is what one can expect after sniffing it in its tin and that for me is already a virtue. Over time I have learned that in the best tobaccos the aroma in the tin and its taste when smoked differ very little. Smooth, fine, silky, slightly sweet, but less than FVF (yes, the comparison had to come).

At this point I don't think it goes without saying, but highly recommended.
Age When Smoked: Unknown
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 08, 2020 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable
I really have come to love the mellowness of these African Virginias . Very easy on the throat but with a good nic-hit with the flue-curing . VERY lightly cased like Union Square . Malty with oats and almost caramel like sweetness. Bready and musty . Not much hay and grass or citrus . A little apricot . Very creamy and smooth . Tingles the tongue a little but no real bite . This is a fresh tin also . Can’t wait until my stash gets some age on it ! Top notch ! 4 stars for this biased Virginia lover .
Age When Smoked: 3 months
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 28, 2018 Very Mild None Detected Very Mild Very Pleasant
I was gifted this in 2016 as part of "Smoking Santa" exchange with a fellow pipe smoker. The jar lid had a 9/23/10 date on it. The ribbon flake crumbles easily and packs well. I suggest letting it air for 15-20 minutes or it can be difficult to light. What a wonderful smoke, smooth and creamy from the start all the way through with a wonderful room note. There's a nutty sweetness that is cool and not harsh in anyway.
Pipe Used: Kaywoodie Billiard
Age When Smoked: 7.5 years
4 people found this review helpful.
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