Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG) Mick McQuaid Plug

A hot-pressed plug of Virginia and burley with a fruity topping, which smells divine as soon as you open the pouch. It smokes velvety smooth and produces billows of thick, creamy smoke. The liquor topping creates an almond aroma and a sweet taste.


Brand Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG)
Blended By Scandinavian Tobacco Group
Manufactured By Scandinavian Tobacco Group
Blend Type Aromatic
Contents Burley, Virginia
Flavoring Almond, Brandy
Cut Plug
Packaging 50 grams pouch
Country Denmark
Production No longer in production


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

Average Rating

3.44 / 4





Please login to post a review.
Displaying 1 - 10 of 20 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 29, 2014 Medium Mild Medium Pleasant
It takes more time to prepare as it’s firmer and more solid than than your average plug. I cut it in small flakes and cube cut the top and bottom pack. After doing that, I find I get a slow, even burn that never gets harsh or bitey, and has a very consistent flavor from start to finish. The Virginia is tangy dark fruit sweet with a touch of mild tart and tangy citrus, and is more earthy and woody than it is grassy. The brandy and almond topping is mild. I tend to notice the essence of almond not in a direct way, and when it shows up, it doesn't add much. The brandy is more obvious, and tones down the tobaccos to a moderate extent. The strength and taste levels are medium. The nic-hit is a shade past the center of mild to medium. Not a complex blend nor is it as strong as some have noted, but it is a very creamy smooth smoke. Requires some relights, and leaves little moisture in the bowl. Has a lightly lingering pleasant after taste, and room note. Virtually is an all day smoke. Be willing to spend some time with it because it'll last a long time in your bowl.

17 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 13, 2014 Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
Recently I was fortunate enough to be gifted 50g of this fine plug. It is one very firm piece of tobacco and if you don’t enjoy taking the time it takes to prepare, it might not be for you. If you don’t mind, you will be rewarded with a very UK style Virginia that is both smooth and somewhat strong. I smoked each bowl fully rubbed out. I didn’t taste much of the topping, but I am not sure how old this plug was, so given the fact that it was in a sealed pouch, some of the topping may have dissipated. I did get just a hint of floral, but it is just a hint. It is slightly sweet, but I wouldn’t call this an aromatic. MMP isn’t very complex, but it doesn’t need to be as there is plenty of flavor. There is a visit from Lady N, especially if smoked quickly. I tend to be a bit of a puffer and I couldn’t get this plug to bite even when pushed. It’s a shame that MMP isn’t available on this side of the Atlantic.
13 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 09, 2004 Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Tolerable
Normally, I try to refrain from commenting on a blend until I have tried at least several tins. The Mick McQuaid Plug is such a rare bird, at least stateside, that I am compelled to forego my usual self-imposed limitation.

I've always felt that unusual presentations lend an additional degree of mystique to a tobacco. Flakes interest me more than ribbon cuts, and coins, twists, and ropes are cooler still. The plug may be the ultimate in this regard. It comes, however, at a price. Preparation is tedious and time consuming, but an absolute kick, and adds to the experience, as far as I'm concerned. Compared to the MMP, preparing a bowl of Dark Star or Stonehaven, two of the rubberier flakes, is a breeze.

Is it worth the effort? I think so. The plug is an intriguing blend that demands absolute concentration to best enjoy. It's fairly heady, and rewards a slow pace. The mouth feel is reminiscent of a lighter version of Full Virginia Flake, displaying that unctuous quality that is almost soaplike- in feel that is, not in flavor. The flavor itself is mildly nutlike, although I wouldn't pin it down to almond. Perhaps filbert. Perhaps I just like to say "filbert."

The dense (we're talking neutron star) plug comes in an adorable, whimsical foil package about the size of a mini Milky Way bar. The fat, smiling bloke on the cover may lead one to believe that it is a less than serious blend that should be relegated to the closet, next to the tin of Daddy's Favorite Baccy, but it's the real thing. When sipped as slowly as an ancient port, the plug reveals considerable nuance, and all manner of subtleties abound.

I strongly disagree with the wording of the category "recommendation." If I were to say "Chateau Mouton Rothschild, 1945, is one of my favorites, I drink it regularly," I would be lying. What I would really mean is "'45 Mouton is one of my favorites, and I WISH I could drink it regularly." The Mick McQuaid Plug is one I'll have a hard time replacing, I'm sure, but it's one that I wish I could smoke regularly.

Thanks to DB for the insight, and for the generous sample.

Addendum: Upon her return from the Emerald Isle, a co-worker surprised me with a box of these little gems. What a kind-hearted woman. By my calculations, I now have approximately two full lifetime supplies of this plug.

Now if I can only convince some lovely Japanese lass to do the same with Momoyama!!!
6 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 18, 2014 Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This plug looks like a brownie, and I shaved pieces off (like carving wood) with a pocket knife then rubbed them out. Appearance at this point was about like Old Dark Fired Ready Rubbed. The tobacco was dark and almost had an oily appearance. It may have been the power of suggestion since almond was in the description, but I thought it smelled a little like marzipan when rubbed out. I did not give it any air.

This is a wonderfully heavy, smooth, and slightly sweet smoke. The Virginias are full and earthy with no tart or citrus. There was good tobacco taste and a whiff of a little something more. In the flavor there may have been some floral, but this is really a tobacco flavored smoke with a side of tobacco.

This is a challenge to get, and it is a great smoke. I would smoke it more often if it were sold in the US. It is easy to recommend, and while it is really a 3.5 for smoking experience, it does not rise to a 4.
5 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 02, 2014 Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant
Dark beef jerky appearance with light flecks. Pouch note is of almond essence, (commercial marzipan), with a slight floral note.

I cube cut this and then rubbed it out. It took a light well. The tobacco will stay lit if puffed, but more than a moment or so of inattention and it will go out. Ideal for a working man.

The room note is solid tobacco with a hint of floral.

This is a gentle smoke. It burns slow and cool with no tongue bite. It has a sweet maltiness to which there is an intriguing hint of saltiness. Almost toffee like. There is some, very slight, bitterness towards the end of the bowl.

An enjoyable everyday smoke which is comfortable without being challenging or demanding or especially interesting either.
5 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 30, 2011 Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Pleasant
Pressed "brick" of tobacco that requires cutting. Unlike Pease's JKP, I didn't get a lot of nuances based on different cuts, so I simply cut it thin - probably because I was also smoking Condor Long Cut around this same time, and it's cut thin. I went with the flow, I suppose.

The pouch aroma is stronger than the flavor of the casing, which is typical of English flakes. This is dark tobacco, but with a lighter heart. I did not find this to be overly strong. In fact, I seem to have found it milder than most of the reviewers. It took a bit of coaxing to pull the flavor out of this one, but not nearly as much as the McQuaid Square Cut required. This one was a better marriage of strength and flavor, although they tasted close to the same. This one gets higher marks from me because I found the comparison of strength and flavor to be better balanced. Nicely sweet but not sugary. Subtle. Could not get it to burn or even turn harsh or bitter. The bottom of the bowl was only slightly more robust than the top. This is one I found hugely simple, without the complexities I find in many English flakes or plugs. A nice "set it and forget it" smoke that rewards in subtle ways. Recommended for the smoker who likes a milder flavor from a dark virginia tobacco... someone just peering over the edge of the Dark Side.
5 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 23, 2012 Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant
I've been wanting to try this for quite some time now and have finally secured a sealed 50g standard sized pouch containing a plug. It's not wrapped in a foil packet like some of the pictures on various internet sites. Opening the pouch revealed a dense plug of tobacco similar in color and tactile qualities to Peterson's 3P's. The pouch aroma was decidedly more fruity than 3P's. Concentrating on the said presence of almond, I could smell that - but faintly. Otherwise, had I not known about the almond, I would just say fruity like jam preserves. Preparation was very similar to 3P's and the thinnly sliced flakes of MMcQ looked identical to 3P's. Now, 3P's is one of my top 5 favorites - love the stuff. These two plugs are not the same taste-wise at all. Also, MMcQ is Virginia forward, where 3P's has more of a Burley presence. Mick McQuaid is also a bit sweeter in taste and in side-stream aroma than 3P's and gives off a fantastic room note. Its Virginia aftertaste reminds me much of Orlik's Golden Sliced. It also had a spice-like presence - not just the typical Va spice, perhaps aniseed? It smoked great right out of the pack. It didn't burn hot, bite, or gurgle at all. A very enjoyable smoke. Due to its non-availability in the USA, 3P's will remain my smoke of choice with this type of plug and still a top favorite with me. A solid recommended if you can get some, but with 3P's on board, the lack of MMcQ's availability doesn't bother me much.

UPDATE: 9-20-13 If you want to elevate this to a 4 star smoke, see my 9-20-13 update for Peterson's Perfect Plug.
2 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 24, 2015 Medium Medium Medium Pleasant
This was a fun tobacco. Nice smell from the 'block', carved it into flakes and it was rather nice. Fruity, to me middling strength and a lovely aroma. It won't become my favourite pipe tobacco, but it is certainly not at all bad.
Pipe Used: Various Billiards.
PurchasedFrom: MySmokingShop
Age When Smoked: Straight from pack, lasted a month.
1 person found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 22, 2012 Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Full Pleasant
As others have commented, this plug is not the easiest to work with -- a sharp knife is recommended. Shredded into fair-sized bits, it has been lighting with only a bit of fuss after an hour or so of drying. Once it is well-lit, it tends to stay alite v nicely.

I didn't get any almond, let alone chocolate, as some other have. For me, I would have to say the flavor was sweetish brandy. Pretty slow burning, it didn't bite, although it felt close a few times. Since I know there are many tobaccos out there I would rate a 4, the question arises would I rebuy this particular tobacco, assuming my tastes don't change much more. In this case, the answer is yes, and I have.
1 person found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 09, 2012 Mild Mild Medium Pleasant
It's a very good tobacco but I was expecting better, based on some of the reviews here. As another review stated, it has a mysterious 'Christmas pudding' aroma. I didn't detect any almond flavours at all, but some brandy. I would describe the aroma both in the packet and when burning as slightly sweet, and chocolatey (even though chocolate isn't a Christmas pudding ingredient). It's not that interesting - the flavour is what it is and it doesn't turn bitter. There is some preparation needed before smoking, but it stays lit and it's difficult to mess up filling the pipe. I didn't think this was strong at all. Quite mild. UPDATE: My taste buds adapted after 4 or 5 bowls. I now think it's almost faultless but I wish the flavour was as strong as the nicotine content.
1 person found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.