Cornell & Diehl John Marr

A poetic mixture of bright and red Virginias with a good portion of Turkish leaf, elevated by genial portions of Perique and black Cavendish, and topped with the flavors of bourbon and vanilla, C&D's John Marr is an unparalleled voyage of sweet complexity.


Brand Cornell & Diehl
Series Melville At Sea
Blended By  
Manufactured By Cornell & Diehl
Blend Type Virginia Based
Contents Black Cavendish, Burley, Oriental/Turkish, Perique, Virginia
Flavoring Bourbon, Vanilla
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 2oz, 8oz Tin, Bulk
Country United States
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.33 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 21 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 19, 2018 Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant
This was a delightful surprise for me. I am usually very cautious about aromatic tobaccos, and I approached this one with no small amount of trepidation. Upon opening the tin you get a lovely aroma. A light vanilla with a very subtle boozy undertone. When you go in for a second whiff you catch the wonderful virginia and perique notes, coupled with the oriental tang. It is fairly moist when fresh and I would recommend some drying time, otherwise it leaves the final third of your bowl fairly difficult to keep lit. It is a fairly uniform medium ribbon cut that packs abd lights easily. I was immediately taken with it. Plenty of flavor here. Typical virginia sweetness, accented by the top notes. A fair amount of perique pepper and stewed fruit. Not anywhere near overwhelming, but definitely present. I have difficulty in detecting a lot of oriental flavor here. Retrohale brings molasses and more mild pepper. The flavors build pleasantly as you progress. The top notes are mild in flavor impact, yet help make a very nice room note. Nothing like a typical american aromatic. This tobacco likes a larger pipe, and so do I. I found that I always wished for more at the end of every bowl. A wonderful aromatic that I will keep on hand for the foreseeable future.
Pipe Used: Peterson system, briarworks rhodesian, bc apple
PurchasedFrom: Smoking pipes
Age When Smoked: New
15 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 26, 2018 Mild Very Mild Medium Very Pleasant
Simply scrumptious! Everything is in this blend that a piper will enjoy. All proportions are well balanced and play very well together. The addition of bourbon and vanilla is just an added bonus. The aromatics are not over the top and let the Virginia and Turkish come through. Easy to light, stays lit, and not gooey. Billows of spice with a nice medium nicotine lift.
Pipe Used: Charatan’s Make Black sandblasted Canadian
Age When Smoked: Week old
14 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 31, 2019 Medium Mild Medium Tolerable to Strong
Cornell & Diehl - John Marr (Melville At Sea).

A fairly fine, medium brown, ribbon, with a mild alcoholic aroma. My moisture's good.

Unfortunately, I'm not as enthralled with the smoke as the other reviews to date. On the positive side it has exemplary burning qualities, doesn't bite, and has a medium temperature. The rest of JM warrants two stars, from me. The vanilla comes over a little stronger for the first third, but is overtaken by the sour bourbon. The tobaccos? The black Cavendish is non-existent, the Turkish, Virginia, Burley are equal in weight, and the Perique gives just enough causticity to ruin it. I don't get rich dark fruit, etc., the Perique only gives a wallop of sharp spice; paradoxically, the Perique causes my clothes to smell like a malodorous, 18th century, saloon.

Nicotine: medium. Room-note: not nice.

John Marr? Just scrapes by with two stars:

Somewhat recommended.
Pipe Used: Davorin Denovic Morta
Age When Smoked: 02/06/18
10 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 04, 2018 Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant
Opening the fresh tin dated March 5, 2018, greeted by an unmistakable aroma of chocolate covered cherries. That’s interesting because the toppings are supposed to be bourbon and vanilla.

It’s a beautiful “Virginia ribbon” as the tin says, a nice light brown like a city roasted coffee. Supposedly there is Black Cavendish in there but it isn’t obvious. (I did find what appears to be a small pine splinter. Wonder how that got there.) The moisture level is just about perfect, though I’m sure some veterans will want to dry it out a bit.

The initial light and smoke are absolutely wonderful in terms of aroma and the taste is quite nice for a light aromatic. I can taste a bit of cinnamon and almost spicy wood note, no doubt from the perique and Turkish, though I’m sure the former is only lightly applied. But the Virginias definitely lay a solid foundation, both in taste and retrohale, making this seem almost like an exquisite cigarette. Probably the Burley making itself known (yeah, chocolate!).

Further down the bowl the tang of the Orientals and the bite of the Virginia hit me, and I got some moisture in the bowl. But it burns beautifully and leaves me with a very pleasant woodsy aftertaste.

Really this tastes like a very typical C&D blend: balanced, tasty, solid. 3.5 stars out of 4. Very worth trying and will gladly buy again when I’m needing a complex and approachable Virginia blend.
Pipe Used: Irish second briar
Age When Smoked: About 8 months
8 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 10, 2018 Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Synopsis: An intriguing blend that brings together a complex combination (some might say a surfeit) of flavors.

Tin Note: Upon opening the tobacco, a boozy topping plays well with the hay-like aroma of the Virginia tobacco. There is a subtle fruity undertone, which I cannot place. Unlike most American aromatics, the topping in this blend does not overpower the flavor of the tobacco.

The Blend: At the first light, the grassiness of the Virginias are clearly present as the major component of the blend. The mix of Virginias here do tend to bite a little, so keep your cadence slow. The Turkish leaf adds a distinct dry woodsy nutty flavor to the blend. The slight spiciness of the perique presents itself as you make your way through a bowl. The Burleys and Cavendish play a supportive role and easily hide in the blend.

Cut and Burning Characteristics: The ribbon cut packs and burns well all the way to the bottom of the bowl. There is a little harshness, which holds this blend back from perfection.

Conclusions: A good blend that might draw aromatic smokers to explore va/pers and oriental forward blends. I expect this blend to improve with some cellaring to mellow out the Virginia tobaccos.

Edit 5 Dec. 2018 The harshness is still present and has become the main reason why it has taken me so long to get through one tin. I probably will not reorder more, though I do enjoy the blend.
8 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 20, 2018 Medium Mild Medium to Full Pleasant
A Bluesy-Boozy-Bandwagon that's best to be enjoyed just as you enjoy your bourbon - sipped! And so we go.. sippin' and pickin'

In the tin-note the very mellow vanilla aroma is accompanied by a somewhat fruity undertone. In addition the mildly turfy and boozy note of bourbon fuses with the lovely vanilla. Once the tin was opened for a while a corn-ish aroma appears, which I find most interesting. Like sweet, roasted corn bread or alike. The flavoring is on the mild side and gets even milder with time, leaving enough room for the tobaccos - mostly the Virginia's hay - to shine through in the tin note! Update: the tin note keeps getting better and better with time! After another while the sweetish notes go play in the back, whilst the warm bourbon steps forward, as well as the Turkish's wonderful spice..nice!

In the pipe the bourbon plays the bluesy-boozy lead guitar, howlin' the lonesomest sounds with its pleasantly spicy, slightly peppery-smoky and smoothly boozy aroma. It's a lot more present than in the tin-note. Quickly the smooth vanilla - which is rather sensitive to vigorous puffing - joins in, yet keeps the amplifier at half-volume, giving a great rhytm for the bourbons strat to wail on.

One might get the impression that this is a full-blown aromatic the way I'm gushing and raving over the flavorings... I just savour this flavoring a lot, so I loved describing it in detail! 😉 The tobacco is everpresent with few of the Virginia's hay and earthy tones, but moreso the Turkish with a delightful hint of sharpness, as well as mildly nutty and ethereal-flowery notes. I get the feeling its the same Izmir leaf as in Embarcadero! I suppose the perique plays a role to the decent spice this blend offers, just as the b.cav. must play a role to the smooth and creamy sweetness and broad flavors.. but they are both unnoticeable as such - they are the sound-engineers of this bluesy-boozy-band! 😉

A lovely Virginia+Orient dominated blend, with an expectionally tasteful bourbon-vanilla topping, that never subdues the tobaccos too much, but always lovely harmonious accompanies them. The flavoring is a bit less present in the last third, especially the vanilla is gone by now and the mixture of bourbon, Virginia and Orient makes for a nice spicy, slightly (pleasantly) sharp last puffs.
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 04, 2019 Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
Sweet,sour, earthy, spicy and a little boozy. John Marr for me is what a top drawer American blend aromatic should be! Not one of the components overrides the other. Smooth savory sweetness from start to finish. I smoke a lot of C&D blends and as per usual the quality of the leaf shines through. The blending is in line with their other creations. Moisture was spot on out of the bulk bag, took fire well with no delights sans the char. Burns at a medium rate with no bite or goop. Consistent flavor throughout the process. Not a nicotine giant but ample enough. Repeatable throughout the day. All in all a very pleasurable smoke in a cob or a briar. Solid 4 here on the creek, will stock more for sure
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 01, 2019 Medium Mild Medium Pleasant
It took me only two tries to find the right pipe for Cornell and Diehl’s John Marr, and it’s one I also use for C & D’s Sansepolcro. While a VA pipe would work, JM will ghost it to the point where it will take a prep bowl before using that pipe for VA again. I recommend against using pipes previously used for strong KYs, cigar leaf, or Latakia for John Marr. Bag note is fragrant, vanilla and faint Bourbon over flowery, dry meadow grasses with woody, flowery notes, along with cashew and sweet country corn bread, as noted by DenizBeck, and these scents are echoed in the tastes, as well. JM handles, loads, lights and smokes down very well. Burn rate is tied to the Orientals, which is to say, a fair clip. However, a tight pack kills the subtleties that make JM special, so I just take it slow. There are savory, faintly woody, very slightly musty over and under tones from the Orientals, and there are bakery spices and some souring from the Perique as it is influenced by the Orientals. The VAs are mostly grassy, flue cured yellow, along with some earthy, air cured red. There are nuts, notably cashew, and some bitterness from the Burley. Ample Cav delivers sweetened Bourbon and vanilla and some typical Cav sour. If the mix is kept cool, the vanilla and Bourbon remain a delicious adjunct to a well-melded yet fairly complex smoke, somehow playing well with the Orientals as well as the flue cured VAs. Strength is just short of medium. Tastes just nudge medium. Room note is pleasant. Aftertaste is the best of the smoke.

With the wrong pipe and/or technique John Marr might still make a 3. With the “right pipe” and “due consideration” I’ll round it up to a 4. I happen to prefer C&D’s (somehow) similar Redburn, but YMMV, of course, and John Mar will make a nice everyday smoke for some.
Pipe Used: seclected briar
PurchasedFrom: Liberty Tobacco
Age When Smoked: a few months
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 02, 2020 Medium Medium Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
I'm not an aromatic smoker per se, but something about this blend has captured a great deal of my pipe smoking attention lately. All the components play together well, and the topping is just right. You get a little taste of it in each puff, but it never obscures the taste of the tobacco.

Personally, I think the Turkish is the star of the tobacco components in this blend, and it lends a certain...astringency(?) which pairs very well with the added flavorings.

If you're primarily a non-aromatic smoker who's looking to shake things up a bit, this is a great choice. On the other hand, if you're a hardcore 1-Q smoker, this might be a nice introduction to more natural tobacco tastes.
Pipe Used: Various
Age When Smoked: Fresh
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 18, 2019 Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
John Marr: A complex aromatic with some perique

The bourbon and vanilla topping complements the tobacco in this blend and is noticeable in the tin-note and subtly throughout the smoke. The tobacco is mostly made up of bright and some red Virginia varietals that provide mostly grassy-crispy notes and a little tanginess to the smoke. The unnamed Turkish varietal provides a strong floral and dry quality to the smoke. The perique is noticeable, adding a subtle spiciness that I quite enjoy. The cavendish is barely noticeable in the tin or the smoke. Make sure to smoke this blend like a straight Virginia or it will lose flavor and bite like mad.
3 people found this review helpful.
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