Wessex Red Virginia Flake

Classic medium Navy Cut with "Red Sun" topnote.


Brand Wessex
Blended By Wessex
Manufactured By  
Blend Type Straight Virginia
Contents Virginia
Flavoring Other / Misc
Cut Flake
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country Germany
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.32 / 4





Please login to post a review.
Displaying 1 - 10 of 25 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 24, 2011 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
The euphemism "red sun" intrigued me into buying a tin of this one (marketing coup eh?). Judging by the tin note, my guess is that red sun is either grape juice or wine. The smoke itself doesn't really taste flavored but does have a nice wine-like finish. Very nice presentation in the tin, the flakes do not stick together and are at a good smoking moisture from the tin. I've been cube cutting (!) the flakes. Very hard if not impossible to get this stuff to bite. As mentioned, the taste is a bit to the thin side... not as much bottom end as I would've expected. Taste to me is reminiscent of Orlik Golden Sliced minus the bergamot topping and not quite as bright overall. Notes of typical virginia fresh hay plus semi-sweet dark chocolate, raisins, white wine, occasionally brown sugar and even maple. Despite all those descriptors I wouldn't say this is an overly sweet tobacc. The tin does not seal air tight once it has been popped -- this would be my only complaint. I liked this well enough that I'm now going to work my way through the other Wessex virginia flakes as funds allow (marketing coup indeed). Price is just a tad to the rich side but not unjustifiably so, this is well done, high quality stuff. Relax and enjoy.
13 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 31, 2006 Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
A red sun top note? That's what the descriptive calls the flavoring. Having never tasted red sun before (that I know of, anyway), I guess that must mean lemony and peppery at the same time. That's the impression I came away with.

Wessex has always produced decent, if not outstanding fare. This is no exception. If you like Virginia flakes with a burst of Virginia flavor along with some punch and a little extra flavoring, then Wessex Red Virginia Flake may suit you.

It has an incredibly fast burn for a flake, especially if fully rubbed out.
10 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 18, 2016 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This is a lovely blend in a few ways . What I really enjoy about it , is that it is very straightforward and is a great representation of what Red Virginia flavor is ! Often times a Virginia blend will be just that [ blends ] and this is the best " teacher " as to what red Virginias taste like in comparison to other styles of Virginias . their is a very mild Top Note and I dont know what it is but I find it pleasurable and it doesnt distract from the flavor of teh leaf . In the tin aroma , there is a super mild whisper of a " ketchup " type aroma ... but nothing like a McClelland product that would be 100X that aroma . I assume that aroma is naturally occurring in Red Virginias and that McClelland goes out of their way to amplify it , where as Wessex does not ... and I think thats a good thing . It burns cool and slow and the flavor is not very complex , nor boring ... it's red Virginia and it's damn good . This is a tin I always have on hand , along with a Ketchupy type McClelland blend [ Tawny Flake ] , which I also love
Pipe Used: Many
Age When Smoked: Fresh and aged [ no more than 4 years ]
8 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 22, 2015 Mild Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
The red Virginia offers mildly tangy ripe dark fruit with a few grass and earth notes. There is a little citrus with a touch of dried fruit as well. I have no idea what the "red sun" topping is or what it does for this offering besides a mild taste of red wine. It has less strength and less depth of flavor when compared to products like McClelland Red Cake. The strength is mild, while the taste is just past the center of mild to medium, chiefly due the sweetness level. Has a mild nic-hit. Won't bite or get harsh. More of an introductory red Virginia flake. Breaks apart very easily, burns at a moderate rate with a consistent taste, and leaves no dottle and little moisture at the finish. Needs just more than an average number of relights. Has a very pleasant after taste and makes a decent all day smoke. Two and a half stars.

8 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 08, 2011 Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
I had no problem with the flakes sticking together, as some other reviewers noted, but they were quite crumbly, making "fold and stuff" a problem. So I simply rubbed it out, since that seemed to be the state it wanted to be smoked in. The tin aroma was of a winelike hay, and the color ranged from very light to medium tan. One other thing I noticed was that this dried out in the tin very quickly, and I recall having the same experience with Wessex Burley Slices. Perhaps it's the square tin? That was fine, too, since it smoked best in a crumbly state.

This winey, grassy note came out in the taste. There was good virginia tang, typical of red VA, but the taste tended toward thin rather than the usual richness of red VA. That wasn't a bad thing, just unexpected. It was actually a good flavor, but I prefer a bit more richness. The taste was very clean but even though I could taste a topping, it didn't assert itself enough for me to really know what "Red Sun" means. It was mellow tasting but could have used a bit of stoved virginia to really take this one over the top. Then again, this is named Red Virginia Flake for a reason.

Good - very good, in fact - but not one for the rotation. It just lacked that last bit of machismo that I prefer or, alternatively, it lacked some condiment to spice it up just a bit and move it from its monodimensionality. Recommended for someone that truly wants a simple red VA.
7 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 27, 2013 Medium to Strong Medium Full Pleasant to Tolerable
This is my first review. I actually made an account to review this tobacco. The tobacconist I go to had two tins sitting there for over seven years according to the lady. One of the tins had two small holes on the bottom from rust. I have been searching for a certain effect and flavor from tobacco that I would get just a little from other ones I smoked. I read some reviews and saw that red is what I was looking for. The tobacco was a solid piece. Dried out enough where I can peel some off and load it. Its ready to go. The taste to me is great. It has that tangy tartness and is so damn sweet at the same time. Smooth. Oh wow. I am smoking some right now and I couldn't be happier. I have been smoking a pipe for about a year now and have been through several tobacccos. I may not be an expert but I am a connoisseur to my tastes, and I say this is a perfect tobacco.
6 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 25, 2017 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
Wessex - Red Virginia Flake.

Having reviewed Wessex's Brown Virginia and Gold Virginia flakes, I wanted to add this one to my reviews once it had arrived. So, it came a few days ago, and given I have some time to hand this morning here it is:

The flakes are quite thin, medium brown, with a tin note that has more of an aromatic hit than the smoke. Moisture's great, making rubbing/filling easy.

Like their Gold Virginia Flake, I enjoy the smoke. Igniting's easy, and the burn from it's good. I can't particularly identify the Red Sun top note from the description, nor do I really know what I'm looking for: what is Red Sun? The flavour I get is one of a ripe, tangy, slightly sweet, Virginia, developing a bit of a doughy taste after a third. There's just enough depth to it to keep it rich, without becoming heavy. The temperature from it's medium, and I get absolutely no tongue bite.

Nicotine: mild to medium. Room-note: lovely.

Wessex Red Virginia Flake: absolutely no problem with highly recommending it:

Four stars.
Pipe Used: Altinok Lee Van Cleef; Friday pipe
PurchasedFrom: Smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: New
5 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 05, 2020 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable
Truly great Red Virginia . Sweet earthy tin note. I have read a few reviews on this particular blend and see the intruque with the topping. I am not sure if it is an allusion to the Red Sun cigarette brand or if it is a play on words hinting that the flavor is from the sun on Red VA. I don’t pick up a topping or casing at all, and frankly if I cannot put my finger on it I don’t care cuz it ain’t there. Like many others I am always on the look our for a McC 5100 replacement. This has no resemblance to that hallowed blend, but it is VERY good in its own right. This may be that replacement for me. Monochromatic and delicious from top to bottom. There is some sweetness, but not too much. There is also earthy flavors along with toasted bread, wheat and rye along with a dry wordiness (just a hint). This is a top rate Red VA and IMO beats out C&D Small Batch and all others. If this came in bulk I’d be buying a few pounds. Highly recommended for the Red VA lover.
Pipe Used: Briar’s and cob’s and Meerschaum
Age When Smoked: 2 years
4 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 03, 2018 Mild to Medium Mild to Medium Medium Pleasant
A red virginia flake with red sun topping?Once the tin breaks a nice fruity smell combined with some citruses and tomato notes comes out(red sun cocktail is consisted of lemon and tomato liquer).the flakes are brown and bright with proper moisture nice texture and very manageable.rubbing is easy and no drying time is needed as lighting is easy with very few relights needed.while smoking the topping subtlimates a little the tobacco flavours but generally they combine very well.the virginias are mostly fruity and grassy with some citrus notes rarelly.the topping is lemony with some tomato notes that sweeten the tobacco a bit.generally the flavours taste natural and sweet.burns a bit quick and medium hot to ash with some moisture at the end of the bowl and a lot at the filter.the nicotine level is almost medium and the aftertaste sweet.there are some harsh points if pushed.the room note is discreet.definitelly a decent all day smoke but not something unique.
Age When Smoked: Fresh
4 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 13, 2009 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
Tin: Light to dark brown with ample streaks of blonde, giving a dark chestnut hue. Moderate fermented cereal, VA hay scent. The 1x3x1/16" sheets of tobacco are easy to separate, supple, not overly moist.

Packing & Lighting: The sheets of the tobacco are easily crumbled into pieces which can be readily packed. Burned to the bottom with maybe one relight. It smokes easily, even if a sheet is just rolled up and stuffed into the pipe.

Left out to dry, it was crispy dry in 30 minutes. This drying greatly reduces the pepper effect on the mouth, allowing one to more fully experience the tobacco flavors.

Taste & Aroma: Similar to its sister blend, Brigade Classic Virginia, but with less taste or aroma, less red VA tang and not as much peppery effect on the mouth.

The key to getting the most enjoyable smoke out of RVF is to get it half-dry. Fold a sheet uup, twist it to shreds, then let it dry until it is just crackly to the touch. This eliminates the pepper effect and allows a mild malted cereal flavor to evolve. It's like two different tobaccos.

Nicotine: This is the one aspect that RVF has more, of compared to BCV. RVF is medium strength.

Room Note: Pleasant ripe, smoky, walnut and grain. Rather than room note, it seems more to cling to one's person.

Overall: RVF is clean and natural tasting, but has less taste or aroma than BCV. I would go with BCV. Worth a try, at 3.4 stars.

After I learned to dry the tobacco just right, I give it a 3.8, 4 stars.
4 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.