Cornell & Diehl Mad Fiddler Flake

The eerie, otherworldly sound of a violin breaches the walls between your rooms. As the Mad Fiddler reaches his crescendo, embers take to your leaf, setting your mixture of Virginia, Kasturi, Perique, and black Cavendish ablaze in the darkness.


Brand Cornell & Diehl
Series The Old Ones
Blended By  
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type Cigar Leaf Based
Contents Black Cavendish, Cigar Leaf, Perique, Virginia
Cut Broken Flake
Packaging 2oz Tin
Country United States
Production Currently available


Extremely Mild -> Overwhelming
None Detected
None Detected -> Extra Strong
Room Note
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Medium to Full
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

3.16 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 25 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 19, 2018 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Very Pleasant
The woody, earthy, floral and incense-like, lightly spicy and clove-like, mildly grassy, vegetative, citrus sweet cigar filler Indonesian Kasturi is the lead component. The spice reminds me of cinnamon, though that spice isn’t involved here. The tangy dark fruity, earthy, woody, lightly bready red Virginia plays a support role. The brown sugary black cavendish provides a smoothing sweetness to tame much of the rough edges. The plummy, raisiny, mildly spicy perique is a background player. The strength is a tad short of the medium level, while the taste is a step past medium. The nic-hit is a hair past the center of mild to medium. Won’t bite or get harsh. The broken flake is a little moist, but I saw no need to dry it. Burns cool, clean and a little slow with a deeply rich, sweet and mildly savory and spicy, consistently well balanced flavor that translates to the lingering after taste. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and requires some relights. The richness of the taste isn’t so much as to prevent this from being an all day smoke.

39 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 24, 2017 Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Very Pleasant
The eerie sounds of Erich Zann's Viola da Gamba call to my ears from the vast Abyss of time, in this room drifts the smoky notes of The Mad Fiddler's grand design. Bready Virginia's wrap themselves around notes of spicy plummy perique. The Katsuri offers a dry cinnamon spice, perhaps a bit of clove. The katsuri also gives the smoke some body, like the cigar leaf does in C&D's Purple Cow. The Black Cavendish adds just the right amount of brown sugar sweetness. The tin note is delicious, Apricots and Cinnamon. It's got a topping but it doesn't really come through in the smoke. May add a bit to the sweetness to this wonderful broken flake. Mad Fiddler Flake is a complex all day smoke, finding itself in my "Smoking Exclusively" category. This is another fine example of Cornell & Diehl tobaccos and how they offer something out there for everybody's taste.
Pipe Used: Cob and Meer
Age When Smoked: 10-10-2017
19 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 09, 2018 Medium Very Mild Medium Tolerable
Touting Kasturi for pipe tobacco seems a little like touting Cheese Whiz for steak sandwiches, meaning, neither of these options would be my own first thought. None the less, I decided to try some Mad Fiddler Flake, based on TR opinions and the notion that – somehow - Kasturi was really “cigar leaf”, and given my fairly recent penchant for cigar-type pipe tobacco blends. The tin of Mad Fiddler Flake I popped was dated 04-28-2018. First thing noticed: it’s not flake, at all; rather it’s moist, short ribbons ranging from medium red brown, to dark brown, to black. Initial tin note was brown bread with faint whiffs of prune, baking spices and vinegar, with a trace of tonquin coming up after a couple of hours. As usual, my first bowl went straight from the tin to a pipe, and because of the cut and the moisture I packed it loosely in a large bowl. I’ve since learned that MFF varies pipe to pipe, and according to how it’s smoked. It lights OK when fresh and moist, but it’s better when dried some, IMO, if only because it’s then easier to smoke down. Lit, it starts out gentle and smooth, a rich, sweet, deep, fragrant Cavendish leading with brown sugar, molasses, and floral overtones. I like to take it slow, savoring the rich, sweet clouds of smoke, and at 1/4 the Perique and the Kasturi/cigar-ish filler leaf come up, with prunes and increasing spiciness that includes very faint clove and slightly musty, earthy, cigar spices. At this point the Cavendish fades but still adds body and ensures there’s plenty of smoke. Just as the spices start to assert themselves apart, the VAs kick in. They seem to be sweet, earthy, air-cured browns and some deep and piquant, stoved red. As the VA sugars rise they are met by bitter tannins from the Kasturi that keep my attention, along with souring from the Perique. Now MFF “turns” again, re-balancing itself just as its component varietals increase in intensity, continuing a smooth if not seamless transition from mild to more than medium in both strength and tastes. The entire time all this is happening the scents remain a delightful mix of brown bread, exotic spices, cigar, and meadow flowers, and all of this is decidedly of the tobacco ilk, and very much so for the last ½ of a bowl. For better or for worse, the “myriad” effects I’ve described seem to diminish with rest time; but the overall profile, etc. hold true. Strength is just over medium. Tastes build from just over mild to just over medium. Although some of the side streams are quite pleasant, the Kasturi kicks the room note up a notch to “tolerable”. Be aware, as well, before approaching significant others, that MF not only ghosts a pipe but it stinks up one’s hair and clothing, too. It’s probably best smoked at the tobacconist’s or outside for this reason. For all that, I quite enjoy the aftertaste, which is a lingering fade out of the best of the end of the smoke.

Of course, the best way to be really good and wrong is to assert oneself with great confidence. Still, on the strength of my experience, I am betting that Mad Fiddler Flake is a prime candidate for cellaring. I happen to like it a lot when it’s young; but I expect it will yet mature into something even better. 4 stars, as is.

Update, 12-07-2018: I just smoked some jar-aged MFF in a WWII era Comoy’s that I use for “cigar blends”. Oddly enough, it was not cigar that I got but a well-melded blend of savory, semi-exotic spices underpinned by something along the lines of Semois, with a perfect balance of red and brown VAs for body. Just glorious! I should have 5 tins of this iteration in reserve, for the inevitable time when this blend is altered or discontinued! Another case of hindsight as bitch! Here’s another one for my Favorites list, anyway!
Pipe Used: various briars
PurchasedFrom: Liberty Tobacco
Age When Smoked: Fresh from young tin and from jars.
16 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 21, 2017 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
Upon opening the tin, the smoker is greeted with the heavenly aroma of dried prunes with a hint of something spicy like cinnamon. The rich, moist, mottled broken-flake promises a heady smoke. The perique in this blend is at the perfect level, present but not overpowering, and the mature Virginia gives this blend a solid foundation, allowing the more delicate spice-like Indonesian Kasturi cigar leaf a stage upon which to shine. This masterwork is not to be missed.
Pipe Used: Savinelli 606
PurchasedFrom: The Cigar Room Shoals
Age When Smoked: Fresh
13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 14, 2018 Medium Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Tin note is like nothing I have run across before. Notes of a craft store during the Christmas season with hints of spices, wood, and fig. Tin note is not off putting in any way, just different, and aromatic in a most intoxicating way. Cut is rubbed out flake resembling many dutch style cavendishes like Amphora. The smoke is fantastic with the cigar leaf never being too overbearing, and the virginias always taking a slight lead. Nic hit is medium to me, and I find MFF to be an excellent smoke in the morning with a cup of coffee. Unlike most C&D blends, this needs some dry time but will reward the smoker with a very pleasant medium bodied smoke. Burns to fine ash with very little dottle and has a wife approved room note. An excellent blend that i have been enjoying all summer and will make a fantastic fall blend as well.
Age When Smoked: 4 Months
9 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 18, 2018 Strong None Detected Full Pleasant
Another paid sample from the Chicago Pipe Show. I loved sipping this one. It's clear to me there are skilled hands at work here, this is a well constructed blend. The tobacco combinations are interesting. The only fault I can find with it, and this is merely personal taste, is the strength of this blend. It's strong, high in nicotine, and, therefore, not to my liking. I would recommend this blend to any who like stronger tobacco's, but not to those who do not. 2.50 stars.

keep on piping...
Pipe Used: Viprati bent egg
PurchasedFrom: 2018 Chicago Pipe Show
8 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 26, 2018 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
Just cracked a tin of the Fiddler that's been in my cellar for a couple months. The Kasturi is definitely evident carrying the cigar like spicy, earthy, incense like flavors. The Virginias are definitely more of the tangy fruity variety. The Perique ... adds a bit of that spicy Periquey punch. Not sure where it comes from, but also getting a bit of cinnamon flavor. The tin I got was more of a broken flake as opposed to the fully intact bubblegum stick flakes like Orlik Golden Sliced. The blend gives me a warming feeling, so I think this blend will really sing in the colder months.
Pipe Used: Scott Thile Strawberry bent apple
PurchasedFrom: SmokingPipes
Age When Smoked: 5 months
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 27, 2018 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
Cornell & Diehl - Mad Fiddler Flake (The Old Ones).

The title of this is missing something. It should be Mad Fiddler 'BROKEN' Flake, well broken at that! So, no rubbing's required, it can just be loaded straight away. Neither does it need any airing.

The smoke has a fairly pungent flavour. The more formidable leaf's the fragrant Kasturi. To begin with the smoke's a little more reminiscent of usual cigar leaf blends, but the fragrant note quickly gains weight, creating an inimitable character. The other tobaccos are much lighter. They give flavour, grass, spice, and sweetness, but are much further behind the cigar leaf. Mad Fiddler' burns well, giving bite free smoke.

Nicotine: medium. Room-note: pleasant.

Mad Fiddler Flake? I like it, but not enough for a full house! Three stars:

Pipe Used: Altinok Lee Van Cleef: Friday Pipe
Age When Smoked: Stamped 10/10/17
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 12, 2021 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
The tin note is different from any other tobacco I've tried so far. Imagine opening up a Fig Newton and sticking your nose into the filling. Figgy, plummy, reasiny goodness. Almost impossible to believe that this is not an aromatic tobacco. The Virginia, the molasses-like smell of the black Cavendish, the spice from the Perique and the unique spicy smell of the Kasturi blend into something that smells like it's meant to be eaten.

As soon as you light it, you can tell this is indeed not an aromatic. At first, the cigar leaf and the Perique add a bit of a rough edge to the flavor, but not an unpleasant one. Soon, all of the flavors blend together, although at all stages you can still recognize the four components: a deep sweetness from the Cavendish, a fruity, bready sweetness from the Virginia, a black pepper taste from the Perique, and the taste of a wonderfully mellow cigar, all combined.

Imagine a good VaPer, and add a mellow cigar and some black Cavendish to it. That might be the best way to describe the flavor.

After a while, the Virginia develops a bit of extra sweetness and the rough edge disappears.

The room note also combines the constituent parts in a smooth experience.

It is a bit too strong for me to be an all-day smoke, but it should serve well in the evening, after dinner, to round off your day.

The flakes pack nicely, and even though I gave it no drying time before folding and stuffing some flakes into my pipe, it burned nicely, leaving no noticeable moisture at the bottom of my bowl.

Highly recommended.
Pipe Used: Peterson Dublin 05
Age When Smoked: 4 months
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 06, 2018 Medium to Strong Very Mild Full Strong
One thing cornell and diehl do amazingly well is creating a very broad range of different types of blends.. something for everyone. Mad fiddler flake is a very stout blend.. it reminded me of two things.. firstly, it smokes almost like a lighter version of a gawith and hoggarth rope tobacco.. but it also resembles kajun kake but with cigar leaf added and maybe a little less perique.. earthy, spicy, full almost leathery boldness.. these are all subjective but I think most would agree it's a flavorful smoke.. my first time trying this particular cigar leaf.. it sure is distinctive.. might be on the harsh side for some people.. but if you desire a big thick flavor I think this would be something to try.. I occasionally like this sort of thing.. not an all day or every day for me.. but I think I will certainly enjoy this periodically. The tin note kind of indicates a topping but hard to distinguish during the smoke.
6 people found this review helpful.
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