McClelland Jubilee

The finest in matured Virginias, blended with premium latakia, delicate Turkish leaf and precious Louisiana perique. A joyful celebration of extraordinary flavors, at once refreshing, intriguing, relaxing.
Notes: Reintroduced in 2009 from a PCCA Blend.


Brand McClelland
Series Collector Series
Blended By McClelland Tobacco Company
Manufactured By McClelland Tobacco Company
Blend Type English
Contents Latakia, Oriental/Turkish, Perique, Virginia
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country United States
Production No longer in production


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

Average Rating

3.58 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 26 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 06, 2007 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
It is time I stopped being so doggone selfish in keeping the secret of this extraordinary tobacco to myself. I've shot myself in the foot by keeping quiet about this in the (admittedly shameful) hope that I can scarf up as much of it as possible for my own cellar. Mea culpa. More on that subject below.

Brethren, this is simply the finest tobacco of its kind I have ever smoked. Bob Hamlin has gone to extraordinary lengths to obtain leaf of the very highest quality for all of the PCCA blends, and with Jubilee his blendmeistering has reached its zenith. My first experience with Jubilee was his offering of Jubilee 2000. I bought a couple of tins in my usual conservative strategy of "buy one to smoke now, and one to cellar". I quickly ordered more. Alas, Jubilee 2000 is no more, but Bob recreated his masterpiece as Jubilee 2006.

Upon opening that first tin I was greeted with a cornucopia of the most fabulously complex aromas ever to grace my olfactories. The fruitiness of well-aged, high-sugar Virginias, augmented by the deep toasted sweetness of matured Virginias provides the basic constitution of this wondrous blend. Then comes the magic; a blend of superbly fragrant Orientals pumps up the OOMPH level, fortifying the smoke with richly varied spices and a shot of strength that elevates Jubilee above the commonplace. The Orientals are in perfect harmony with the Virginias, never manifesting that tongue-bashing, yin-yang tug of war that so often accompanies Virginia/Oriental blends. Bob Hamlin's choice of fine Turkweeds is matched only by his careful restraint in measuring them for optimum (not maximum, if you understand the difference) effect. It's a case of less is more, executed with the same kind of mastery that one finds in, say, Greg Pease's milestone Embarcadero.

But hold...there's more still. If you are among those who appreciate the fine art of using Latakia as a subtle spiceweed rather than a tongue bludgeon, you'll find Latweed nirvana in Jubilee. Every time I smoke this stuff, I find myself wondering how so few blenders seem to understand that concept. Here is the pinnacle of that craft -- enough Latakia to make its presence known as a complex condiment, but in sufficiently sparing quantity to ensure that it never dominates the smoke. It is true genius, a term I reserve for a select few blenders like GLP and Rudiger Will.

As if that weren't enough, there is pure magic in the utterly brilliant use of Perique in Jubilee. I'm mentioning it last not because it works as merely another condiment tobacco -- it doesn't -- but because it is the magic ingredient that transforms Jubilee to a thing of rare and delicate beauty. It is even less explicitly detectable than the Orientals and Latakia as an identifiable presence in the blend, and therein lies the masterful essence of its inclusion. That's why it deserves special mention here, apart from the Virginias. The quality it imparts is more than that of even the most harmonious VaPers. It would be a mistake to say, "Ah, well...Jubilee is a Virginia/Perique blend with added Orientals and Latakia." Nope...not by a long shot. The Perique in Jubilee is a supple and unfathomable ghost that works in synergy with the other components -- not just the Virginias, but all of the tobaccos -- in a way that has no equal in my 43+ years of pipe smoking(as of this writing).

Today (November 6, 2007), Bob Hamlin's "The Smokers Pipeline" newsletter announced that his stock of Jubilee was all but exhausted, and that he has no plans to make more. Unacceptable. That's what I meant by shooting myself in the foot. It's time the pipe smoking community discovered this little-known secret -- a truly classic manifestation of the weed blender's art at its finest. I invite everyone to hammer Mr. Hamlin ( mercilessly until he recants his heresy and relents with a reissue of Jubilee. There's a reason why it has sold out in all of its past versions. I beseech one and all to pester Bob to make more so you can smoke some for yourself and find out why.

13 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 05, 2015 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
This is a great tasting blend. The dominant flavors come from the Turkish and the Perique. The Turkish is smooth and buttery with just a touch of a sour note. The Perique has a nice note of dark fruit and just the right amount of spice. The smoky Latakia and the superbly sweet Virginias provide the support. Well rounded and very satisfying. McClelland continues to impress me with the quality of their tobaccos.

Mild to medium in body. Medium in flavor. Burns perfectly.
Pipe Used: MM Country Gentleman, Mark Twain, Patriot
Age When Smoked: fresh
8 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 16, 2011 Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant
SMOOOOOTH, no other way to describe this blend. My tin was dated 2009 when opened, so it did have 2 years of age on it. My first reaction was that this tobacco is just too mild, nothing jumps out, here is another one for the "Blah" bin. Then I started to crave this blend at some very odd times of the day; the first pipe of the day, it wasn't harsh but it seems to have enough "N" for a pick me up, then the middle of the day , working in the yard where I really wasn't paying attention , then the last pipe of the day, where I needed my touch of "N" and my tongue was on its last legs. The tobacco claims to have Latakia and Perique, but they are only in very minor amounts and the Virginia does not come forward with a big shot of sweetness or heat. I would say that the "Turkish" tobaccos ( I really don't know what the difference between Orientals & Turkish are) is the predominant player .There is no bite , no moisture , packs and burns perfectly out of the tin, no ketchup, no spicy hot, just a well balance smooth smoke that when sipped has a complex nature that holds your interest. I find myself, saying after finishing a bowl, " Wow, that was good, now what do I want? Well maybe one more bowl of Jubilee" . I'm sure this will stay in my rotation

Updated 12/21/11- This is a very hard blend to classify. No one component dominates, as a matter of fact, you can't even detect each component as they all work in perfect harmony . The latakie is not smoky, the Turkish is not cheesy, the Perique is not peppery and the Virginia is not hay like or sweet. Actually the blend has a sour note. One thing this blend does have is SMOOOOTHNESS. It is so smooth that you don't even notice the "N" creeping up on you, but it's there. It is also difficult to determine how to describe the flavor of this blend, nothing jumps out, but there are subtleties. I detect a cocoa flavor, that is most prominent when you first light up, but hidden way in the background is a "Wintergreen" flavor (it's not, but no other way to describe it),you have to search for it. Overall a very pleasant flavor and one that gives a great change of pace from the other blends in my rotation. I will keep this around. The second half of the bowl tends to get bitter and I do like Wilderness slightly better because it has a stronger cocoa flavor. Tin improves with a few weeks of breathing and drying, still 4 stars.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 23, 2011 Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
I'm struggling with this review. Not because I can't decide if I like Jubilee - I love it! But how to describe it? Although I typically favor richer, fuller tobaccos, this one has probably become one of my top one or two mild oriental blends with enough complexity to keep it interesting throughout the smoke.

Perfect moisture level in the tin, which to me means not very moist at all. Packs nicely and burns wonderfully. From the first match, the flavors start out as a bit nutty, a touch of "old dusty attic" (in a good way), toasty and warm, with the orientals firmly in the foreground.

The Latakia is barely noticeable to me, and this in corroborated in the appearance - mostly bright and chestnut browns with only the occasional dark leaf (Latakia and Perique). The Perique, too, is barely there, in fact I can barely notice it during the first two-thirds of the bowl. It's one of those "I can't pick it out in the flavors, but I would probably notice if it were gone" kind of things, but the last third brings out a bit more of the Perique spice. I think this is an ideal blend for those who are averse to large doses of Latakia but want to try a mild English-slanting blend.

It takes a lot of effort to get Jubilee to bite, and I like to vary the temperature, from sipping to full-on puffing, for a variety of taste experiences. Lower temperatures seem to favor the spicy and slightly floral notes of the orientals, while turning up the heat seems to pull in the blended flavors of Perique and Virginias.

My tin is three years old and I haven't tried it fresh, so I can't tell how this will age. With very long term aging, I might worry about the small amounts of Latakia and Perique getting lost, but then that may be just the thing that will cause it to develop further grace and character. Ah, the mystery!
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 26, 2017 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
This is a reintroduced old PCCA blend that tastes like the original to me, except a little fresher as my tin was only 4 years old when I tried it. It should be no surprise that the taste is similar since McClelland's produced and tinned up the original. Nicely done package of rich and ripe Virginia, smoky Cyprian Latakia, a dash of just enough Oriental components to settle the blend and Perique to pop the palate with a pleasure surprise with every puff.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 05, 2016 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
The matured Virginias are the major players, and its aspects include a rich fermented dark fruitiness with a very light tanginess, mild citrus and earth, and a fair amount of grass. The Turkish is a little floral and woody with a sour note as an ever present background player. The perique offers a little raisin, fig and spice, though its presence is minimal. The Cyprian latakia adds a very mild smoky, woody sweet push to the blend, never rising above the condimental level. The nic-hit is just past the mild threshold. Even though it’s a thin ribbon cut, it won’t bite or get harsh. It does burn at just a little more than a moderate pace, but it’s a cool, clean, smooth smoke with a very consistent, mild to medium taste. Requires few relights, and leaves virtually no moisture in the bowl. The after taste is pleasant. Mild enough to be an all day smoke, it also has enough going on to hold the interest of experienced smokers who are used to stronger blends of this kind.

5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 01, 2013 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Let me first state I have some bias with Jubilee. It is my favorite tobacco bar none. Even Penzance. The first tin was a chance selection at my favorite local shop when I first tried English blends. I was a fan immediately and it pulled me to try many other fine Mc blends.

Very subtle sweetness from the VA and some spicy from Orientals. The Latakia is there, but not too strong. All day smoke that rewards your undivided attention with some complexity just beneath the surface. I'm slowly stocking up with some 2008 tins. It has aged very well.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 16, 2015 Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
Mottled blonde-to-black ribbon with the unfortunate addition of a fair amount of stems... not what I expect from McClellands. But it could have been just this one tin. Tin nose of McC's pure Virginia with a backdrop of earth. An old Bob Hamlin PCCA blend, I'm told.

Very much Virginia forward and the addition of latakia is condimental, as I usually prefer. The sweetness and tang of the VA is front and center. The latakia is subdued but noticeable, and adds just a wee bit of sweet smoke. The orientals don't distinguish themselves (as if I could likely tell which ones were used anyway!) but add some body and a slight sour flavor. The perique is barely there and it exhibits neither dark fruit nor peppery spice - just much needed bass notes. This blend might be just another blend were it not for the wisp of perique. I think the balance here is magical and it is one smooth blend. Not nearly as complex as I would have guessed, but subtly so... enough to keep the interest piqued. A mellow, thoughtful blend, not terribly exciting but one that if I were a morning smoker would probably be one I would smoke then to get my tastebuds primed for headier fare later in the day. This seems to me an excellent recipe brought to reality by McClellands superior Virginias. 3.5 stars - not quite 4 but definitely pushing that level. Recommended to those who enjoy light flavors that come to you on their own time rather than those that force themselves on the smoker. This is one I'll pick up more of, but not destined for my personal top tier.
Age When Smoked: 4 years
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 17, 2010 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
This is incredible. Light English? Whatever... it's sweet, full, tasty, biteless.... best all day tobacco ever. This stuff is stupidly good. Perfectly balanced flavors, excellent smoking properties. Wow.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 04, 2018 Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant
I'd call this a hidden gem in the now defunct McClelland line up. There's no mistaking this blend for anything but a Virginia forward blend, but the latakia, orientals, and perique are there in just enough force to hint at the flavor of a Balkan. Nic hit is just a touch past mild, but nowhere close to medium strength. Some sweetness without being cloying and spice that doesn't overwhelm the whole. As the tin says, "A keeper!"
Pipe Used: GBD Varichrome, Grenchi Freehand
PurchasedFrom: Pipes and Cigars
Age When Smoked: One year
2 people found this review helpful.
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