Solani 633: Virginia Flake with Perique

(3.40)
Specially selected red Virginias from the Old belt and ripe, bright Virginias, sweetened with Louisiana perique build up this masterpiece of tobacco blending. Flake slices.

Details

Brand Solani
Blended By R.L. Will
Manufactured By Kohlhase & Kopp
Blend Type Virginia/Perique
Contents Perique, Virginia
Flavoring Apple, Rum
Cut Flake
Packaging 50 grams tin, 100 grams tin
Country Germany
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

3.40 / 4
93

48

21

3

Reviews

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Displaying 1 - 10 of 48 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 04, 2014 Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable
The bright Virginias have a fair amount of tart and tangy citrus, bread, sugar, hay and grass, light floralness, and a honey note as a lead component. The earthy, woody perique has a very obvious spiciness along with some figs, plums and raisins as a strong supporting player. The spice is noticeable in every puff, and melds well with the Virginias. The red Virginia offers a very light tangy ripe dark fruit, sugar, bread, wood, and earth just above the condimental position. Has an extremely mild topping of some kind as I sense apple and rum notes. The strength and taste levels are medium. The nic-hit is a step below that mark. Won't bite or get harsh, and has a few minute rough edges. It burns cool, clean, and slow, but loses a bit of its sweetness if it's dry, so I recommend leaving it a little moist. Has a very consistent sweet and spicy flavor with no weak or dull spots. Leaves little moisture in the bowl. Requires a few relights. The after taste pleasantly lingers, and the room note is a notch stronger. Is almost an all day smoke, and an experienced smoker may consider it to be one. Four stars.

UPDATE 7-5-2022. The blend has been changed a little. The constituent tobaccos are similar in some respects with the same proportions, but the brighter Virginias are a little more potent. The red Virginia was replaced by a dark orange Virginia, which has less dark fruit, earth and wood. The less sweet perique lacks the sweet fig and raisin qualities from past productions, and is very dry and plumy. The spice content is a little less, and doesn’t have the tingly sensation now. It takes several puffs before it kicks in. The rum was replaced by the mildly sweet honey, which fades a tad after the half way point. But it’s more obvious than the rum was in earlier manufactures, which obviously tones down the tobacco a mite more. It’s possible that the apple casing may still be in use, but it’s not evident to me. It was slight in the past. There’s just a little more sourness, floralness, and lightly more acidity in this version that characterize the mildly weakened sweetness. The strength, nic-hit, and taste levels are all step below what they were. This blend gets three stars from me, now, and my current rating at TR reflects that.

-JimInks
84 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 26, 2010 Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
A true flake in a flat tin - always perks up the excitement for me. Mostly light in color, the flakes stay "flakey" in the tin. I preferred this one at tin moisture, which is weird for me with flakes. But the more I dried this one, the less flavorful it became.

I can best describe the taste of this one as Orliks Golden Sliced with the addition of perique. There was a very noticeable citrus flavor but, whereas I found it wearing over time with the GS, the perique in this blend made it work wonderfully. The perique's zestiness and piquancy offset the VA's sweetness with an excellent balance as the result. This blend exhibited no aberrations such as tongue bite, excessive relights, heaviness in the throat or tobacco infighting. It was far from complex but just a good, non-threatening smoke. I don't consider this one of the worlds great VaPers, but it was a pleasant smoke and one I'll come back to from time to time. I tend to prefer a little "darkness" in my blends, and this one was a bit too steered toward the lighter flavors. But anyone who prefers that taste should absolutely buy some of this and it could become a compelling favorite.
16 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 28, 2013 Very Mild None Detected Mild Pleasant
One of the best presentations to date in a baccy, all three dimensions symmetrical between flakes. Flakes more lemon yellow in color than light brown. I detect a "brighter" hayish tin note than say Dunhill LF, no hint of honey to me anywhere in this blend. Superb quality is evident in the construction of this Solani blend. I cellared tbis tin 9-12 months, vacuum was present, yet the moisture level was dryer than [all] other flakes I've tried. No more than two lights were ever required throughout any bowl, and the baccy burned to ash, without bite.

My only beef(s) with 633 are that first- I taste very little perique anywhere during the smoking of any bowl. Secondly, to me its dainty in the Vit N dept; my preference of Va/PerBur blends of any type are for early morning, in part for the stimulation derived thereof.

Not much help from 633 in that venue.

I would highly recommend this blend to pipers with refined palates, straight Virginia lovers or VaPer enthusiasts adverse to too much spice, and newbs wanting to ease into this genre.
Pipe Used: Meer, Savenelli dedicated to Virginia blends
PurchasedFrom: P & C.com
Age When Smoked: 9-12 months
10 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 16, 2014 Mild Medium Medium to Full Pleasant
Last month I cracked my first 150g tin of this. I've had a few tins of the smaller size & found them very good, high-quality leaf, ready to smoke right out of the cans (when aged 2 or 3 yrs). The bag was another animal altogether. Straight off, it was a bit harsh & bity unlike the other tins I'd smoked. They were just a bit sweet, just a hint of Perique spiciness, a nice medium bodied VaPer, altho a bit light on the "Per" side for my taste. The bag, however, was flat & sharp tasting. It was 2 years in the tin, so aging wasn't a problem. What was? I put it in a Ziploc freezer bag & opened it for an hour or so to sniff every now & then for three weeks (I must admit that the sniffing told me nothing at all...). When I finally lit it up after this air time, I was thoroughly delighted to find that it had attained that fine blend of slight sweet grassiness & light spice that the smaller tins had. It has virtually no bite when smoked slowly, and a nice medium-full flavor & aroma that go well with anything from a good book and/or a double espresso, to a fly rod. Well recommended as an intro to the VaPer world for anyone.
Pipe Used: Nice clean clay, meers, Dunnies
PurchasedFrom: JR
Age When Smoked: 2 yrs
7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 14, 2014 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Nice tin note. Light colored flakes alternating between streaks of brown and beige. Gravity feed, char, tamp and light gives a nice mellow and deliscious smoke. Beautiful taste when drawn through the nose. The ash is nice and white showing the purity of pure leaf without artificial additives. The perique is there...but not as upfront and centre as I like but it is there. An enjoyable and nice tasting flake.
Pipe Used: Several Peterson's & Missouri Meerschaums
PurchasedFrom: Jades smokers corner
Age When Smoked: 1-2 years jarred and aged
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 16, 2002 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Tolerable
After reading the excellent reviews on this blend I ordered some from Cupojoes, NY. This review is the result of smoking the first of three tins. The initial impression regarding the tin aroma is it resembled that of Dunhill?s Light Flake: sweet natural Virginias, lovely pressed, spicy and exciting, but with a notch of Tabasco sauce! 633 comes very tightly packed, and it is still lighter in colour than DLF. Peeling off the individual flakes was a tricky business. Once done, the flakes are easy to rub out, pack in and light up.

The first few puffs continue to ring a DLF bell: the Virginias are smooth, quiet, elegant and slightly sugary, perhaps not as rounded or deep, yet full of body and character. But the resemblance ends there, for almost immediately the sacred weed from Louisiana asserts its presence, demanding immediate attention. Now the whole structure of the blend has changed, providing a unique layer of flavours. Without entirely receding to the background, the initial Virginian harmony becomes gradually encircled by the Perique?s piquant/peppery melody, construing a most intriguing dialogue of tastes: at times sinfully sharp and tangy, at times smooth and elusive, but keeping always a very peculiar density that lingers on well after the bowl is over.

For me this is a tobacco that does not burn hot, but I wouldn?t go to the extent of classifying it as a cool smoke. Absolutely no tongue bite, the blend seems to be designed to entice your senses by making your palate travel through a very spicy ?tastescape?, never tiresome, never dull. I think I still need to experience more of 633 before properly judging if it will become a regular smoke. So far, however, it has been a unique encounter, quite unlike any other tobacco with similar components I have previously tried (e.g., Stokkebye?s Navy Cut, currently a favourite of mine, though it doesn?t have the same Perique intensity as Solani?s flake), and definitely a top quality smoke.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 04, 2021 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Unnoticeable
My last review for the day. This blend was another pipe club sample that I got to try with the added twist that it was additionally home-stoved for a few hours, I have not tried this out of the tin so take this review for what it is. This is a really beautiful flake that I was easily able to fold and stuff into a cob. It smoked like a really high-quality Vaper, smooth with some degree of spiciness and smoked well in the cob. If he brings it in again at subsequent meetings I will try some more. I did not detect any of the flavoring listed but may have contributed somewhat to the overall sweetness while smoking. A really good flake and glad I got to try it.
Pipe Used: Corn Cob
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 03, 2020 Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
Rather hard to get hold of in the UK, I got a few tins of this when it was available and I'm not disappointed, nice stuff and looks like it should age well.

The tin aroma is of black tea, with citrus from the bright Virginia and just a hint of spice and fruit. Its clear that the Perique has been added with more restraint than in the Sam Gawith St James that I was smoking previously. The fairly thin light brown flakes in the 100g tin are long, folded, in an unsealed bag, and the tin is not airtight, so I'm glad my other tins are vacuum sealed 50g ones.

It rubs out fully without any difficulty, and take a good light with a single match, as expected with a tobacco that is almost entirely Virginia. Likewise the burning characteristics remain favourable throughout, it burns evenly and stays lit without much input. One word of warning - don't pack it too tight (a bad habit of mine, greedy guts), it needs room to breathe and if you cram it in you'll not enjoy the end of the smoke and be left with a big wad of greasy dottle.

The taste is from the start astringent like black tea, with a biscuity, bready character from the Virginias and some woody flavours in the background. It should be smoked slowly for best effect, treat it like a straight Virginia. The sweetness plays on the back of the tongue, like liquorice root, and there's a hint of saltiness too. The Perique is initially almost undetectable, but contributes a subtle sourness and progressive spice throughout the bowl. By the end the pepperines is quite punchy with the Virginia base being so mild. I'd estimate that it's a similar Perique content to Navy Rolls, but more noticeable in this bright Virginia flake than in the rich Navy Rolls. By comparison to Orlik Golden Sliced, it obviously has a higher Perique content as the latter has the barest smidgeon.

The aroma is OK, it burns well with little need to relight, and leaves just a bit of dottle. It doesn't have enough Perique to entirely offset the risk of alkaline Virginia tongue bite, and given the spice from the Perique, you may not notice this until it's too late, so it is best to smoke it very gently as you would a straight bright Virginia. It has adequate vitamin N but it's not strong.

I'm summary, this is a fairly mild Virginia Flake that segues into a light Virginia/Perique with emphasis on the peppery character of the condiment leaf. I think I'd appreciate it better in the summer, and would go for the heavier Virginia/Perique offerings from Samuel Gawith at this time of year (December and January). It is very nice and I'm glad I've got a few tins laid down to mature.

*******Update 2023*****

I've opened one of my sealed tins. It's different than I remember the smokes I had from the big tin I smoked when I first had this. For a start, there's obviously a volatile topping applied, to my nose apricot and alcohol but I could be sold on the idea it has apple or rum. I don't remember this at all from before, so I guess the volatile components had evaporated in the loose sealed tin, but are trapped in the vacuum sealed tin. Perhaps I preferred it without this topping? It doesn't much come through in the smoke though.

The second thing I'd note is that the Perique is very restrained. Perhaps more than Orlik Golden Sliced, but barely. Both are essentially a Virginia Flake which happens to contain a little Perique, rather than a heady Perique blend.
Pipe Used: Northern Briars Liverpool
PurchasedFrom: Mysmokingshop
Age When Smoked: New
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 04, 2017 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
A very nice VaPer. Tangy citrus and a hint of dark fruit with ample sweetness and spice. Just a bit too grassy for my taste. Would like a little more dark fruit. Still a very tasty smoke.

Medium in body. I think a small amount of the sweetness may be added. Taste is medium. Burns very well. Pretty good stuff.
Pipe Used: MM Marcus, Country Gentleman, Mark Twain
PurchasedFrom: smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: fresh
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 10, 2016 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
My first look at Solani 633 occurred yesterday when my partner picked up a tin for me while in town, I had mentioned to her previously how I wanted to try Solani 633 so it came as a pleasant surprise to me.

First impressions were good, I like the small size tin as it fits comfortably in my pocket. Upon cracking it open I see white paper encasing the flakes sealed with a gold coloured adhesive tab, these sticky tabs usually loose their purpose fairly quickly when the glue dries out.

Anyway, on to the prize, mostly light brown coloured, thinly cut flake, quite loose so they rub out very easily, moisture level straight from the tin is spot on I think too.

First sniff of the tin produced the, somewhat expected, fresh hay/grass, almost citrus/lemon or maybe I should call it 'zesty' but there is a very definite fig and raisins or plum thing going on too, is this partly from the perique?. As others have wrote, the perique contingent is slight I agree but it works so well. This tobacco could be smoked all day without any problem whatsoever, in fact I have had a wee bit trouble leaving the tin alone since I got it!.

This is one of the easiest prepared flakes I've had the pleasure of smoking, so far I've only smoked it after it's been rubbed out but am curious as to how it will smoke if I were to fold & stuff a flake instead?.

After the initial charring light it stays lit well with only need to tamp now & again. I like to smoke it slowly and experience every taste it gives me, it's been said it's been cased with honey, I haven't read this officially from Solani but I can taste a very honey like sweetness from this tobacco. To be honest, it makes no odds to me whether it's really been topped with honey or not other than how I taste it and that's been good so far.

Pipe Used: MM Cob, Carey Magic Inch Straight Billiard
PurchasedFrom: The Pipe Shop, Leith, Edinburgh.
Age When Smoked: Fresh
3 people found this review helpful.
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