Hearth & Home Marble Kake

A firmly-pressed crumble cake blend of bright and red Virginias, it comes as a solid cake which can be broken or sliced and rubbed-out, and the flavor changes depending upon how you prepare it. Knowledgeable Virginia fans often compare it to Hamborger Veermaster as a smooth, but tasty Virginia blend.


Brand Hearth & Home
Series Signature Series
Blended By Russ Ouellette
Manufactured By Sutliff Tobacco Company
Blend Type Straight Virginia
Contents Virginia
Cut Krumble Kake
Packaging 1.5 ounce tin, bulk
Country United States
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.13 / 4





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Displaying 11 - 20 of 60 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 31, 2009 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This blend just seems rather flat to me. To give it the benefit of the doubt I jarred it for about four months and tried it again. Still uninspiring. I'm an English smoker who likes a good, rich Virginia, so it has to be something special to make it into my rotation. This one is just too plain, little complexity, with an ordinary tobacco flavor, lacking the sweet and rich sipping qualities of something like Blackwoods or FVF. It burned just fine in a meer, thoroughly rubbed out and lightly packed. I'm totally willing to give it a few more months, and it might make a fine blender, so I'll give it two stars.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 31, 2016 Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
To quote the late seventies band The Adverts, I found this tobacco blend to be a "heads down no nonsense mindless boogie". Now, I'm not using the term mindless in a negative way, as I found this blend to be so straight forward in its smoking qualities as to be effortless to accept. It is what it is and doesn't pretend to be something that its not - no flavorings, no burley, no perique, no Cavendish (black or otherwise) and no latakia. You either like this type of pure tobacco pleasure, or you don't. MK is about as definitional a Virginia smoke as you can buy. As an English smoker, it isn't something that I will smoke straight very often. I used it in micro blending and it's purity and strength moved all of my English micro blends toward dead center whether light, medium or heavy varieties; i.e., it made them very straight forward and ordinary. I don't take this as a negative, just something I have to accept. This is a bedrock blend of high quality and shows you how pipe tobacco blending started out in the past - about 200 years ago. Three stars for valor.
Pipe Used: Ashton LX Brindle half bent stovepipe billiard
PurchasedFrom: pipes and cigars
Age When Smoked: 1 yr old
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 24, 2014 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
I have made the statement in other reviews that I do not really get the hearth and home Virginia blends. They are quality products but they never really peaked my interest much.

Marble Kake is the best one of the bunch I have had so far. This nice krumble kake is a mixture of mottled browns and has a beautiful Virginia aroma.

Keep in mind the sample I smoked for this review was aged about 6 years so your mileage may vary. This blend had a nice deep fig and raisin taste that any good middle of the road Virginia should have. It was very rich and definitely resonated with me as a Virginia lover.

Definitely recommended.
Age When Smoked: Purchased 2008
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 19, 2012 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
This tobacco was my first pipe experience with straight Virginias. I particulary enjoy "working" the kake slices, cutting them into little chunks and then rolling them out. I gravity feed and lightly pack a Missouri Meerschaum General I reserved for smoking straight Virginia tobacco and it seems this was an excellent choice combination. The smoke is ample and the flavor is enticing, developing from very faint in the beginning to moderate in the middle to great in the end. I experienced no bite with Marble Kake but I do suggest smoking this blend in a pipe that has an easy draw. I smoked one bowl in a vintage MM cob with a small bore cane stem and after working very hard to keep the smoke flowing and the bowl burning my tongue was slightly raw from the effort. 🙂 I started out with a 2 oz sample and I've since ordered more to cellar. I recommend this tobacco.
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 29, 2012 Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
Stopped by P&C the other day to find something different from the usual ARO that I smoke. Really wanted to try a Va, and this is what they recommended. Brought home a sample. After reading the reviews, I wasn't quite sure what I had gotten myself into. What a great surprise!! This is wonderful! For a VA, this has some very nice sweetness, and good aroma. It's a bit of a challenge to rub out, but your rewarded with a tobacco, that lights well, and stays lit. If others experience bite, I never found it. It was gentle on the tongue, and easy on the nose. First part of the bowl is light and grassy, but as you smoke down the bowl, the flavors get sweeter and more complex, but always mild. As you get to the bottom of the bowl, it keeps you wanting more.

Being an ARO smoker, this is a really nice change of pace. This could be a very nice everyday smoke, for VA lovers or new pipe smokers.
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 15, 2011 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
I wasn't too sure if this tobacco would be my thing as straight Virginia's are not always at the top of my list so I just received a sample. This review would be based on that rather than the normal full tin I try to smoke before any review. With that in mind all I can say is WOW this is a good Virginia tobacco! My Kake was a broken into smaller pieces. When rubbed out the moisture leval is perfect. This tobacco appears in the pouch as mostly light pieces and the scent was a bit winey. I put "none detected" in the flavor box, but there was a slight stickiness that could be simply from the pressing of the tobacco. I'm not sure. I tend to be a bit of a "puffer" so I need a Virginia that is forgiving and Marble Kake is such a blend as it did not bite me, even when pushed a little. Marble Kake is sweet and when sipped, really sweet! (Not in a cased way). The sweetness remains throughout the bowl even though it grows more complex throughout. Many Virginia's are nuanced and subtle, Marble Kake is much more bold IMHO. I can only imagine what a couple of years in the cellar will bring to the blend. I'll be picking up a pound to find out! Highly Recommended!
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 26, 2006 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable
Recently, pipesandcigars.com tobaccos have been getting lots of ?press? on the ASP Forum and Newsgroup. Mostly people have been talking about Russ Ouellette's efforts. A friend sent me a sampling of several of the blends I'm most curious about and Marble Cake was among them.

Appearance: A nice selection of Red Virginia, and Bright Virginia in a dense crumble cake. Very nice mottling of colors from yellows and tans to red and browns.

Aroma: This mixture has a deep sweet aroma very enticing. Immediately one smells a deep hay-like quality, freshly mown hay, slowly drying in the summer sun. Deep, sharp and earthy. Carmel tones and nuts are evident, there is a slight sweet 'n sour tone and a smattering of mustiness.

This tobacco is nearly perfect in moisture breaking several pieces of the cake off I crumble thenI employed the ?once like a baby, once like a lady, finally like a gentleman? method of layered packing.

For this review I've chosen an Armellini Freehand dedicated to Virginia mixtures.

Lighting is very easy, and with a friendly ?lighting tamp? I was well on my way each time. As expected, the initial flavor very spicy, hay-like tones and smells and flavors of Autumn are abundant. Combustion is very self maintaining as promised, this very nearly smokes itself every time.

Mid Bowl: Approaching mid-bowl, the fullness tends to build in strength slowly along predictable lines. The Red Virginia begins to develop more of the deep fruity sweetness adding to the grassy qualities of the Bright. Unfortunately, this blend seems to get rather steamy and hot for me each time.

Home Stretch: As end of the bowl approaches, the expected complexity is just not there for me. This blend continues to be steamy and hot, tending toward tongue bite rather easily. The final third has matured nicely but the lack of complexity and steam just become a defining issue each time I've smoked it. I have plenty of fine well behaved Virginia mixtures in my cellar already and this one sadly won't make the cut.

Supplemental Notes: Marble Cake is probably a decent quality mixture, just not one I will be purchasing. Rating for those interested in numbers ** stars
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 27, 2023 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
I don't have the discernment of a blender, and I usually compare the smoked tobacco with something similar.

There are several ways to enjoy the cake, and breaking it by machine is the easiest way to light it..

It's a little bit stronger than Samuel Gawith Golden Glow, it tastes very similar, but it's twice as cheap,

As the only variety that can be sold on its own (Straight Virginia), I never expected it to have the complexity that other blends present.
Pipe Used: Briar&Meerschaum&Corn&Clay
Age When Smoked: new
1 person found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 06, 2019 Very Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable
The presentation is one soft plug and rubbed out it looks like cereal flakes of raw leaves of tobacco. My 4 oz bag came a little on the dry side but the humidity in my neck of the woods is rehydrating it in the jar . This is a very natural tobacco with barely any casing and needs to be sipped slowly or it could bite . I like to light this type , tamp down and come back to it a couple hours later as the flavor simmers . It gets better down the bowl . It runs the gamut of Virginia flavors . Grassy and hay then citrus and some baked bread and a wee bit of brown sugar . I get a little honey , maybe from the casing ? Another taste I cannot put my finger on . I like it a lot for a straight natural Virginia! I am going to light a bowl tonight, tamp down and then smoke this in the morning. Gets better with every bowl ! A little apricot also . I really think it tastes like maybe maple syrup ? 4 stars
Edit 11/8/19 - After smoking about 4 oz of this i am finding that my ph or whatever doesn’t agree with it (tongue bite ) . I read a lot of other reviews and it seems most smokers say the opposite. I love the damn taste of this though . I starting mixing this now and it goes nicely with some latakia and no bite now . I will experiment as i have some left . May buy more as a Virginia base tobacco for mixing ? Still deserves 4 stars
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 15, 2018 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
My 1 oz sample is at the perfect moisture. The bag smells mildly sweet with a little raisin and a slight bread note. It crumbles and packs well. Thru the 1st and 2nd third I get a deep and creamy semi sweet flavor. Very similar to McClellands 5100. The last third is what is different for me. The flavor changes to something very similar to a C&D blend. Almost like Oak Alley but sharp and it gets rough. Not necessarily a bad thing but I believe some aging will improve this blend very well. Burns surprisingly cool and dry down to a gray ash.

Next I loaded a bowl but left it in a solid chunk. Sprinkled some loose bits on top to help fire it off. This is much better in my opinion. It has a nice creamy sweetness but starts getting a very pronounced Virginia spiciness. Burns cool and down to a gray ash.

It does hold true. Depending on how you prep it will determine the flavors. Very nice blend.

Update 6/11/19 I purchased half a pound and aged it for 8 months before running out of my second 2 oz sample. The jar aroma is like levi garret or red man chew now. I didn't realize before of how chunky the tobacco cut is. It's an almost ideal blend to repress, age and cut into flakes. Also didn't realize how moist it was too. But despite the moisture, I doesn't require any drying time. It burn pretty evenly all the way down. Flavor wise I haven't noticed a change between being aged or fresh. Still has that spicy sweet creaminess. Nothing like any other Virginia I've had from Hearth and Home. All the rest seem to crap out half way through the bowl. Still a highly recommended blend in my book.

6-22-23 Cracked open a jar from 2021 and I'm disappointed. Outside of the tart and tangy side, this batch is very bland. No spice, very little sweetness and just a cheap overall flavor. My 2018 batch is far more superior.
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