Notes: A light, bright flake of famous refinement and antiquarian origins, here in ready rubbed form, Capstan Gold, like its medium bodied Blue sibling, was originally created by W.D. & H.O. Wills of Bristol during the latter half of the 19th century. Suffice to say, it's no accident this smoking mixture has survived as a favorite to so many generations. Produced by Mac Baren since 2006.

BrandMac Baren
Blended ByMac Baren
Manufactured ByMacBaren
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
FlavoringFruit / Citrus
CutReady Rubbed
Packaging50 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Cup O' Joes
Product Image
Mild to Medium
None Detected
Room Note

Favorite Of 2 Users

4 star:
3 star:
2 star:
1 star:
Sort By
Please login to review this blend.
JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (3050)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

This review is virtually the same as the one I posted for the flake version, because I tasted no discernible difference between that and the ready rubbed. The only differences are that this is easier to pack because it is ready rub cut and burns a little faster.

A moderately sweet and easy rubbed out flake with a little sugar and some citrus toppings complimenting the tart and tangy, citrusy Virginias. The Virginias offer a bit of grass, some hay and bread, plus a pinch or two of earth, and wood. Has a light floral quality as well. The strength and nic-hit are a couple of steps past the center of mild to medium, while the taste almost reaches the medium mark. No chance of bite or harshness. A rather uncomplicated blend that burns slightly less than at a moderate pace, cool and clean with a smoothly, tart and tangy sweet consistent taste from start to finish. There are several kinds of Virginias in this to create a well balanced blend. Requires a few relights, leaves little moisture in the bowl, and will burn to ash. Has a lightly lingering, pleasant after taste and room note. An all day experience that works for the smoker who wants a gentle, sweet flavor without the most of the earthy characteristics darker Virginias provide.


23 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (2082)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Mac Baren - Capstan Gold Ready Rubbed.

It's been awhile since I had the Blue Capstan's so I can draw no comparison; that doesn't matter though, this is great in its own right.

It's badged Ready Rubbed so that could mean it's virtually a shag, mid-sized ribbons, or even practically a broken flake; this mixture's a little thicker than your standard ribbons, yet it's not quite what would qualify as a broken flake, so for now I'll leave it as very chunky ribbons!

There isn't too much aroma from the tin, it's just a straight Virginia smell: a little citrusy, slightly grassy, and slightly hay like.

The moisture's great, and as you'd expect, the colour's a medium brown. So, onto the actual smoke:

The ribbons aren't so big as to need crumbling, or rubbing. They are however, thick enough to give a cool smoke, and a slow burn. It lights easily and then, straight away, gives a good Virginia flavour: I wouldn't say it's exactly 'Full', there's not enough going on for it to accomplish that title, but it's quite a rich, sweet, strong and grassy Virginia flavour. If I think of how a Virginia should taste, this sort of flavour is what would come to mind. I don't get any added tastes highlighted on my palate; there's nothing I wouldn't expect from a high quality Va. The nicotine's quite mild to me, I wouldn't say it's mild only, but definitely no more than medium.

Rating this is simple; it is after all, one of the best straight Virginia's I've had: Highly recommended.

Four stars.

Pipe Used: Peterson Donegal Rocky #221

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: The Danish Pipe Shop

11 people found this review helpful.

CornCob Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CornCob (94)
Medium to Strong Mild to Medium Medium Strong

I prefer this blend over it's blue step brother, although it is nice in it's own right. The gold is smooth and sweet, satisfying dose of vitamin N and doesn't get boisterous if smoked all day. This is in the top 5 of RR VA blends for me, its become a regular for me and shall remain that way.

8 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1829)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Mac Baren's has done a very good job with Capstan Navy Gold's replacement with the same namesake. Not nearly as rich and creamy as the Wills original, but then, there are decades of differences in the fermentation process which makes well aged Virginia leaf so much more wonderful than it is fresh.

Mac Baren captured, for the most part, the mysterious top note that the original was famous for. An enhancement for the Virginia, which is a little rough around the edges, but one can tell that Mac Baren made sure to use the finest specially processed leaf available. It is a reliable smoke and I will certainly add a few tins to my cellar for aging. Not really as stout in the strength department as I personally enjoy, but on down the road would be a perfect blend to goose the nicotine strength by beefing it up with, say, Five Brothers or some other strong Burley that doesn't deliver much of its own flavor.

5 people found this review helpful.

HabaneroHardy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
HabaneroHardy (403)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Unnoticeable

As mentioned in more than one post, I attend a pipe club at times that meets on Sundays. The nice part of this is that we all from time to time bring in blends that others have not tried. This is one of them and I was graciously given a good three pipe bowls of this infamous blend from a HUGE friend of mine we shall call Big “L”. From what I have read prior to 2013, Capstan was off the US market for 18 years (1995). There is an excellent article by the Dutch Pipe Smoker, June 12, 2013 that talks about the history of this blend, https://dutchpipesmoker.com/2013/06/12/oh-capstan-my-capstan/. There is a good amount of folklore that this 2013 blend has a higher sugar content. I have heard this from my fellow pipe clubbers and there is also an excellent review by Mork that goes into further detail. I had an unsmoked Missouri Pride Corn Cob that I decided to use to provide me the best possible review I could do which will probably be a lot shorter than the preceding information that I have provided. This is a medium-dark rubbed out flake that loads easily into the pipe and has the usual nice sweet grassy hay smell of the tobacco. It took me about 3 matches to get her going. The topping on this one is very light, not even noticeable to me. It has that fantastic smooth, creamy, Virginia taste and produces quite a bit of white smoke to my surprise. As I have never to my knowledge had this before I cannot ascertain if there is any difference between the years, regardless this is an excellent tobacco. P.S. All of my fellow pipe clubbers are “HUGE” friends. :)

Pipe Used: New Corn Cob

Age When Smoked: 7 years (2013)

Purchased From: Gift

Similar Blends: Orlik Tobacco Company A/S - Golden Sliced (Red Tin).

3 people found this review helpful.

Rustedrailsmokes Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rustedrailsmokes (293)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Tolerable to Strong

I recently purchased a few tins from Smokingpipes when they mentioned that they had stock from 2013 on the shelf. I'm not usually patient enough to let tins age that long, so this gave me a quick start.

I enjoy the Gold Flake so I was happy to find that this is basically the exact same goodness in a much easier to load form.

Opening the tin and removing the top paper, I found it packed full of grassy goodness. The tin note is grassy like I want a pure VA to be. The moisture level was great and didn't require any drying. It's easy to pack and stays lit.

The taste has some citrus notes and is not very complex. Its consistent through the bowl and smoked well in a variety of pipe shapes.

Wife is not a fan of the roomnote.

With the age on it, its a great smoke. I compare it favorably to the flake. It does burn quicker than the flake so it requires some attention. I've always preferred the Gold over the Blue versions, but that is just me.

Pipe Used: various

Age When Smoked: 6 years in tin

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

Similar Blends: Mac Baren - Capstan Gold Navy Cut / Yellow Flake.

3 people found this review helpful.

Briar Baron Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Briar Baron (12)
Mild to Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant

I really liked the flake of this blend and honestly did not think the ready rubbed would be as good....but I would be happy to buy this version, especially since I was lucky enough to get some of the 5 year aged tins that were being sold recently.

That being said, buy the fresh version and and confidently cellar it for a few years for an amazing tobacco that is smooth and tasty without any hint that it would bite.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Autograph, Ardor, Dunhill

Age When Smoked: 5 years

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

Similar Blends: Capstan Blue.

2 people found this review helpful.

Jason h. Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Jason h. (51)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

This tobacco is very good! Its got that sweetness about it, without having to even try. This would be an all day tobacco if it weren't for the price. I give this a thumbs up for taste, and aroma. Its not pretentious, its just straightforward good Virginia tobacco. Enjoy a bowl!

Pipe Used: Chacom 93 amber stem

Age When Smoked: 5 years old

Purchased From: Smoking Pipes

2 people found this review helpful.

Philo Beddoe Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Philo Beddoe (221)
Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Delicious grassy Virginia with a light citrusy flavor on the back end. This is a definite all day smoke for me, mostly through the hotter months, as I prefer English blends once the leaves start to fall. I like the ready rubbed version better than the flake, as it's just less work and I don't expect any real revelations as this ages, so no need to bother with the flake here. Highly recommended for all who enjoy a light Virginia tobacco flavor.

Pipe Used: Various briars

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Local B&M

Similar Blends: Orlik Golden Sliced, Dunhill Flake.

2 people found this review helpful.

Wally Frank Collector Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Wally Frank Collector (46)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Upon opening tin I was greeted by a hay fragrance with a nice lightly woody, light bread and a faint earthiness and pleasant citrus aromas. This was slightly damp so I dried for an hour each time and I have smoked it in my Peterson Killarney B10, La Roca Canadian and various cobs.

It is pre rubbed into long strips and packed easily. It took a bit more to get it lit but once lit it burned slow and cool and had less relights than normal. The smoke was medium, creamy and full. It burned to white ash. Had a very light amount of moisture in the bowl at the end. Had a very pleasant room note.

Upon lighting I was greeted with a very pleasant, mild tobacco flavor that was pleasant which was highlighted by a really pleasing hay, mild fresh bread flavor with a light touch of earthiness that had in the background a pleasing tangy citrus I tasted as a lemon with no bitterness, that ended with a very pleasant sweet honey flavor that sticks around after each puff and one cab taste a while after the smoke is finished. A pleasant experience. A wonderful mild tobacco that is not overly complex but is pleasing and comes across as a quality tobacco with a medium nic hit. While not complex it isn’t one dimensional either. It is well done and can be an all day smoke. Doesn’t bite. Compared to the blue this is slightly sweeter less earthy. This would be a perfect morning tobacco, a great tobacco in hot weather, on a picnic or doing chores or just for enjoyment.

This is a favorite that will be part of my regular rotation. A pleasing smoke that will see lots of use. A 4 out of 4 stars. While the blue is a bigger favorite of the two I will be enjoying plenty of this.

Pipe Used: Peterson B10, Laroca Canadian, Cobs

Age When Smoked: 1 year old can

Purchased From: West Virginia Smokeshop

1 person found this review helpful.

Tlemon200 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Tlemon200 (5)
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Mild Tolerable

A “gold” standard of a straight virginia - very light grassy/citusy smoke. Takes a moment to get going but once its up and running its a no brainer. Just about the mildest tobacco you could select with a classic clean room note. Doesnt bite unless you really push it. Ready rubbed means no fuss, dry it a moment and pop it in the bowl. Very satisfying with a pretty good nic hit. Not an all day on account of the strength. 3/4 recommend

Age When Smoked: New

1 person found this review helpful.

BrokenRecord Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BrokenRecord (124)
Mild Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

Capstan Gold is a pleasant lighter VA flake. The Virginia leaf are dominated by citrus notes but they are also sweet, bright, and crisp. The Virginias are less floral and have less body than those used in Capstan Blue. There is a slight chance of tongue bite in Capstan Gold, but not much.

Similar Blends: OGS.

1 person found this review helpful.

CountryPiper Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CountryPiper (19)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

This is in my top 5 easy. When I need a straight Virginia blend that I know I can always count on this is one I grab. A very sweet, grassy, citrusy blend that packs incredibly easy and smokes perfectly. Leaves very little moisture at the end of the bowl and smokes, cool, clean, and requires very few relights if any when dried for 10 minutes. I love this blend, it is exactly what I’d expect from a straight Virginia that’s been around since the 19th century. Ages extremely well.

Pipe Used: Castello KK Billiard, Chris Asteriou Bent Brandy

Age When Smoked: 7 years

Purchased From: Consignor/Smoking Pipes

1 person found this review helpful.

JaWiBr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JaWiBr (568)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Tin note of ketchup, mild stewed fruit, and spices. The tobacco is moist but dry enough to smoke. The orange-brown broken flakes rub out easily. Burns slow with a few extra relights. The strength is mild to medium and nic is mild to medium. Though listed with Fruit / Citrus flavoring, I couldn't discern it individually. Taste is medium and consistent, with complex notes of sweet hay, dry earth, tangy orange peel, stewed fruit, spicy, tart lemon grass, floral, very woody, a mildly sweet spiced bread background note, and a moderately peppery retro. Room note is pleasant, and aftertaste is great.

Pipe Used: Peterson Bard Rusticated 221 Fishtail

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From: pipesandcigars.com

Nobody has rated this review yet.