Mike & Russ: The Mind Meld Sweet English

A full mixture of the finest smoky Cyprian latakia, fragrant Turkish, naturally sweet matured Virginia and a touch of soft, mellow black cavendish. Smooth, rich, subtle!
Notes: An outstanding blending collaboration of thoughts and tastes between McClelland's Mike McNiel and Pipes and Cigars' Russ Ouellette.


Brand Mike & Russ: The Mind Meld
Blended By Mike McNeil & Russ Ouellette
Manufactured By Mike & Russ
Blend Type English
Contents Black Cavendish, Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Virginia
Cut Mixture
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country United States
Production No longer in production


Extremely Mild -> Overwhelming
Very Mild
None Detected -> Extra Strong
Room Note
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

2.38 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 8 of 8 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 14, 2018 Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
The smoky, woody, earthy, musty sweet Cyprian latakia is the lead component. The grassy, citrusy matured Virginia doesn’t quite reach the supporting player status. The floral, lightly spicy, woody, earthy, mostly dry and sour Turkish is barely a condiment. The sugary black cavendish adds a noticeable bit of sweetness even though it is a condiment. The strength is a step past the mild level, while the taste is just past that. The nic-hit is mild. Won’t bite, but has a rough edge here and there despite the effect of the black cavendish. Burns moderately cool and very clean at a slightly fast rate. The sweet and lightly savory flavor has a little inconsistency. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and requires few relights. Has a short lived, pleasant after taste and room note. An all day smoke that lacks depth.

4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 31, 2016 Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
Mostly black ribbons with some darker brown tossed in. Tin nose of latakia and sweet Virginia. Some clumps among the ribbon. Came drier in the tin than I'm used to from McClellands and drying out wasn't necessary. Nor did doing so help anything.

Dusty and sweet are the two words that come to mind when I smoke this. Unfortunately, I can't make out any oriental presence here, as the latakia covers them up. The latakia is prominent but not strong and the Virginia is sweet and noticeable. The Cavendish lends its sugary note but it distinguishes itself by tasting like added sugar as opposed to the natural sugar in Virginia tobacco. Unfortunately, while this was sweet, it was also dusty tasting and I found it wearing out its welcome very quickly. Beyond that dusty taste, I just found no personality to this one. Sort of an "English Aromatic" attempt and it didn't seem to lean to either the McNeil or the Ouelette camp, which makes it a nice collaboration. I guess. This just struck me as a failed experiment. I liked the other two in the series very much but this one left me cold and unexcited. Try it if you're curious - you might enjoy it more than I did.
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 22, 2017 Mild Very Mild Medium Tolerable
The Lat dominates with a dry smokey wood. The Turkish and Virginias are nearly invisible. The Black Cav lends no flavor and only a minimal artificial tasting sweetness. I find this Lat to be a bit bland tasting, and the overall flavor of this blend very monochromatic. It's basically just a low quality Lat with a fake sweetness.

Mild in body. Medium in taste. Added sweetness is very mild. Burns very well.
Pipe Used: MM Marcus, Country Gentleman, Mark Twain
PurchasedFrom: pipesandcigars.com
Age When Smoked: fresh
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 29, 2019 Very Mild None Detected Full Tolerable
After how much I loved the Mind Meld Virginia Ribbon, I was looking forward to trying this one. Unfortunately this one failed to impress me at all. I even found the title to be a misnomer in that I did not find it sweet in the least bit. In fact, my biggest gripe about this blend is its lack of sweetness.

In terms of performance, there is nothing wrong with the blend at all. It is a nice consistent ribbon cut that was perfect humidity upon opening. It packs well and burns well. Another plus was that it had a nice sidestream aroma.

The problem is in the taste and I just found the Latakia to be overwhelming; this also leads to this one being very weak in the nicotine department. I am not sure where the sweetness suggested by the name was intended, but it clearly missed the boat. The Virginia was a whisper and the Cavendish was the same, but tasted like it possibly had a topcoat. I am pretty sure the rest of it was not topped. The oriental was detectable, but did not help as it only added bitterness to what was already a mouthful of yesterday's campfire.

I can't and won't recommend this blend at all and that is why I have stuck with a hard line objective one star rating. In truth, if this had a different name like smoke eater, oriental smoke bomb or something like that, and if it was still produced, I would probably give it two stars as I know there are some who like lat heavy blends.

The name is disturbing as it sounds like a good intro to lat blends for the person considering making the switch, or crossover blends as some refer to them. In reality, it is a blend for the hardcore lat enthusiasts. The problem with it not being produced is that one will be forced to pay a premium to try this one and it just is not worth it.
Age When Smoked: 3 yrs
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 14, 2017 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Very Pleasant
Not sure what these other folks are smoking. Sweet English is exactly what it says it is. It is a sweet blend of English tobacco and it is a really tasty blend. The opening of the tin gives an aroma of wood smoke (latakia) and sweet hay (Virginia). First couple of puffs were very sweet and as you continue you receive smoky sweet flavor. This is a very tasty blend that is different from any other blend I have tried. Burns very easy and cool with a nice smoky aroma. This is an excellent all day smoke. This is a blend anyone can enjoy.
Pipe Used: Boswell poker
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 16, 2016 Mild Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
I had hoped that Sweet English, my first encounter with the Mild Meld series from outstanding blenders, Russ Ouelette and Mike McNeil would be something truly unique. For me, that isn’t the case as this taste’s very much like a McClelland English blend even though the tin note smells to me like collaboration. Now that isn’t a bad thing, but it doesn’t stand out either. SE is in the same range of sweetness as Frog Morton on the Town or Park Lane No. 8. For me it fits into that “crossover” category rather than an aromatic English, although I am sure some would debate that point. It didn’t require the dry time that I usually expect from McClelland tobaccos, and it behaves very well in the pipe. It’s mild in strength and medium in taste. It burns cool and doesn’t leave a lot of dottle. All of the component tobaccos are of the usual high quality that I always appreciate from these blenders. The Cavendish adds the additional sweetness, but isn’t overpowering at all. Fans of FMOTT, Park Lane No. 8 and Northwoods, (Boswell) will likely be quite pleased with Sweet English. SE is a good entry into that genre of blends, but for me, it leaves me wanting.
Age When Smoked: new
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 02, 2016 Very Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable
Ok this is my First Impression...

This blend is a head scratcher. I mean really what is it supposed to be? Not really an English and not necessarily an Aromatic. I even hesitate to call it a Hybrid.

For sure it makes for an innocuous English but SE is like a summer night style English- something to smoke outside when it's hot and you don't want to piss off your neighbors.

If you think of it as a Miller Lite of English blends you'll do fine. There is a little sweetness from the topping - reminds me of sugar water. A hint of Oriental and a discernable amount of Latakia. Virginias are there - sort of. Not a lot of body.

This is the kind of blend where you scratch your head and wonder - Did I just smoke something?

This makes my second try of The Mind Meld Series - and like the Virginia Perique blend - I am just puzzled as to what these blenders were thinking? It's as if their blending styles meet and rather than "merge" cancel one another out - leaving the smoker confused and craving more.

Now this all sounds like I am pooh poohing this blend and I have only had a few bowls - so keep that in mind too. Like any Veteran will tell you- sometimes it just takes a while for a Tobacco to Grow on you - what we might dislike today might turn out to be something we love tomorrow.
Pipe Used: Savinelli Hercules
PurchasedFrom: Pipes&Cigars
Age When Smoked: New
1 person found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 24, 2016 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
UPDATE: I am well into my 3rd tin of this tobacco and I am LOVING it. IMO, the dark Latakia notes beautifully compliment the Black Cavendish and lead to many surprising microbursts of flavor. I find that the slower I smoke it, the more microbursts appear. One warning - if you push this blend and try to smoke it too hard, it can bite a wee bit, and the subtleties disappear.

ORIGINAL REVIEW: Contrary to the other reviewers, I thoroughly enjoyed this blend.

I smoke English and Balkan blends almost exclusively, but have been on a lifelong search to find an sweet and mellow style aromatic which I actually like.

While this is NOT an aromatic, per se, it has a "sweet meets smoky" quality for which I have been searching. It also burns beautifully, and produces generous quantities of A+ room-note smoke.

What's not to like ??
Pipe Used: Barling, Dunhill, Sasieni
PurchasedFrom: Cigar International
Age When Smoked: 1 year old
0 people found this review helpful.
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