McClelland Christmas Cheer 2012

Handblended, premium pressed Virginia flake pipe tobaccos. A fine vintage, naturally sweet, in limited quantity. This 2012 blend is made with a special selection of deep orange, ripe flue-cured Virginia from the 2008 crop grown near Stantonsburg, NC.
Notes: Rich in oil, intense in color, this is prime, sun-dappled leaf ready to age remarkably well in the tin. Each buying season, we look for tobaccos of exceptional quality and distinctive character. In various combinations, their flavors, aromas, textures contribute to the overall excellence of our products. The leaves of different crops and regions are combined to maintain consistency from year to year. With Christmas Cheer pipe tobacco, we treat our discriminating customers to the singular pleasure of a tasting of the very finest in tobaccos of a particular vintage, not worrying about maintaining the flavor and appearance of this product into future years but actually striving instead to present the unique character of a single crop and area. That's what Christmas Cheer pipe tobacco is all about. Happy sampling!


Brand McClelland
Blended By McClelland Tobacco Company
Manufactured By McClelland Tobacco Company
Blend Type Straight Virginia
Contents Virginia
Cut Broken Flake
Packaging 100 grams tin
Country United States
Production No longer in production


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

Average Rating

3.25 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 10 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 16, 2015 Mild None Detected Full Very Pleasant
I was going to wait until a special moment to crack my 2012 Christmas Cheer. But, realizing that tomorrow is not guaranteed, I cracked the tin this morning and am currently on bowl number 5. Delicious and while all of these Christmas Cheer blends have similar taste, I believe this one really sparkled with a deep sweetness that I don't recall finding in the other vintages (of course, the older my tongue gets the quicker I have to go to my notes). I did look over all of them for my Virginia natural sweetness rating and the best score - I rate 1 to 10 - was an 8 for the 2002 version. I give this one a nine. Simply marvelous at the match and unrelenting in depth of flavor. As fine a naturally sweet red cake as I've ever smoked. Light in the strength department but actually full in flavor. Unique and tasty. I smoked it all day and just finished my 5th bowl a moment ago. Despite the fullness of the flavor, my palate never got that heavy feeling one gets when smoking many blends over and over.

7 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 13, 2012 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
I have always felt that Christmas Cheer should be enjoyed both as a fresh blend and aged. This year I am enjoying the 2012 blend in early December, and will open a 2000 tin for Christmas Day. This year's offering I rate as outstanding, and have put up several tins for aging. Dried slightly before packing, it burns well and I am trying it in different bowls to see what the optimal shape is to get the most out of the excellent flavor offered this year. So far, a narrow tall bowl is my favorite. Unlike some other years, the flavor and taste start off strong, with a rich helping of Virginia sweetness. So much so, that I can only imagine what this blend will bring in a decade. Excellent room note for a straight VA, and a desire to grab another pipeful later in the afternoon add to my recommendation that you try this one now, and squirrel away a tin or three for later Holiday enjoyment.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Nov 01, 2012 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
I ordered as quickly as I could when I seen this become available and as said before me was like a kid at Christmas. I waited though... I opened the tin and packed on of my favorite pipes and put it sigh... back in the stand to sit and excruciatingly long time... took a few good pinches out to air a bit and put the lid back on the tin.

While I waited I sniffed this stuff over and over and the Ketchup mentioned (i did say that at first too) moved more towards something oddly familiar yet distant. I asked anyone so inclined to stick their nose in to see what they thought (quite a fun game for me :)).

It struck me finally one evening... Fruit cake!! I swear that is what it reminds me of.

I gave some to a good friend of mine to to try and we usually catch time to sit and chat and share a good puff and expecting him to wait some like I did he popped into my office the next day singing its praises (I was appalled - and now had a good reason to break my waiting period)!

Long story to say this is a very lovely blend and I am going to get second tin to have as a treat even after the holidays!

Great room note (for me ;)), great tasting smoke that deserves to be enjoyed slowly with a good beverage! Highly recommended.
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 05, 2017 Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable
Everything that McClelland does, either good or ill, is exemplified in their Christmas Cheer 2012. Dense little flakes of almost geometric perfection. Golden yellow and deep copper in color. The vinegar, tomato sauce aroma in the tin that is such a McClelland inevitability that it's tedious for me to mention it.

Tangy and grassy. Tangy, grassy, mild, and playful. The smoke dances over your tongue and stimulates the palate like a dry riesling or even the puckery, herbal aspect of straight vermouth.

Little more need be said. McClelland makes red cake Virginias that define and exemplify the genre and the Christmas Cheer series are the exemplars among exemplars.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 25, 2013 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This was my first Christmas Cheer and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is a typical McClelland Virginia with that typical fantastic tin aroma. It also has a nice tin presentation with the standard broken flake like you would see in 2015 or blackwoods flake. And like all those blends it tastes great. This is most like Mixture 27 to my tastes.

One thing about this tobacco is that it will come very wet and almost unsmokeable upon arrival. It needs some air and a chance to dry before it can be enjoyed. I was able to keep mine stored in the tin for around 8 months before jarring.

I would think that if you really wanted to enjoy this at Christmas time you would need to immediately open the tin upon arrival and just leave it open for several days. I may do this with the 2013 that is on its way.

I also have another 100g of this aging and am going to do my best to hold out for 10 years as I am a sucker for good marketing and this seems like a wothwhile enterprise. Anyway, I highly recommend the series and this just happens to be the first one I am reviewing if I start to notice some are better than this, I may come back and adjust.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 25, 2012 Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
Just got my tin of Christmas Cheer 2012 this evening, and naturally, like a kid on Christmas, I had to open it and have a bowl right away!

There is a plentiful amount of broken flake chunks in the tin, this should last a long while.

I didn't bother letting it sit out, loaded 5 or 6 pieces into my bowl and went at it.

That was a mistake, only because the tobacco is moist enough to not stay lit for too long. However, I can only see this getting infinitely better with drying time and cellaring!

The flavor profile of CC2012 is as if Irish Flake and FVF got drunk and had an unprotected one night stand leaving CC@012 to be their love child! It's a wonderful marriage of the finest VA's plus the McKetchup. I love that smell, and I'm glad it doesn't transfer over into the smoke.

This, naturally, since it's a VA blend is meant to be sipped and savored. Being such a limited release, this is perfect to accompany those treasureable moments with your loved ones, or if your in need of a well deserved treat.

4 stars is simply not enough.

From now, until Christmas arrives, or when websites run out, I will be buying a tin every week.
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 07, 2015 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium to Full Very Pleasant
So this was my last bowl last night before going to bed. This morning I woke up with a sugary taste on my lips. I agree 100% with pipe stud about the sweetness.

I've had this blend Jared up since 2012 and last night I noticed sugar crystals on the flakes. This is just a awesome blend. The jar note kinda reminds me of grape soda. A bit of vinager, fruit cake.

I like to grind up my flakes in a hand crank grinder. This eliminates the need to dry my flakes and for me it also increases the flavour. This blend gives a very nice dark fruit taste on the tip of the tongue and leaves a wonderful sugary aftertaste. I now totally regret not getting more tins.
Pipe Used: Altinok meerschaum
PurchasedFrom: 4nogs
Age When Smoked: 3 years
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 13, 2014 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This stuff is had been on storage for 2 years and the devil on my heart don't stop whispering on my head to open this stuff. With passion I open this stuff and is wonderful, I can smell the citrus and warm ginger scent follows with grassy and woody mature virginia. The smells is strong, sweet and wonderful, made me hurry to rub it and pack it in to my pipe. Nice little brown cube flake is so beautiful to see and smell.

I rub the flakes in to small pieces because I'm worried if I pack it in cube flakes it will create air pocket and after the ash reform it will fill the empty space and make it difficult draw also poor smoke. Pack it with 3 layers method, tamp with index finger and make a good cherring light is still best way for me to enjoying pipe smoking. This method is success to enjoy this McClelland Christmas Cheer cube flake.

The burn is very good, is not difficult to keep the light on and easy to draw. I can easily to make a great smoke without found any difficult when puff it. The strength is medium, start with a mild mellow taste and increase following your puff. Don't smoke this stuff with fast and hurry, just enjoy it with slowly and gentle, you will have a nice smoking experiences. Taste so sweet, mellow and warm, with citrus scent follows and little bit spicy on edge.

I think this stuff will be much more better if I can hold my self to keep it at least 3 years more. I felt so guilty that I can hold my self to stay away from this stuff and not tempted to open it. I really hate if the devil is right, this stuff is very delicious and the devil is win...
Pipe Used: Peterson Dublin Castle 999
PurchasedFrom: Local tobacconist at Indonesia
Age When Smoked: 2 years
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 15, 2013 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Good quality tobacco will be great with age buy one for now age one for later
2 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 11, 2012 Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
I cracked my tin tonight, and was pleasantly surprised. I can be a little sensitive to VAs and their potential to bite. I tend to smoke a little quickly and have noticed no ill effects yet. Great when exhaled through the nose and those wisps that curl back up into the nose while breathing between pulls are delightful. Great aroma to me... the Mrs. says it's not bad. Some citrus notes and quite sweet in my opinion. Great tasting, yet light-bodied tobacco. Needs a bit of time in the open air for my preference. Go slow for more flavor. Push it and it can become flat - as can many tobaccos. Have some aging in a jar and a tin in reserve... may have to make that a few more tins. Delicious.

**Edit** I have noticed that if I pack it as tightly as I would a ribbon, the experience is not as grand. For me, it really shines with a very light pack. If it is too light, you can always adjust through careful tamping.
1 person found this review helpful.
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