Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG) Escudo Navy De Luxe

A combination of full bodied Virginia from North Carolina and Virginia blended with Perique from Louisiana are the cornerstones in Escudo. The blend is pressed and matured before it is spun and cut into coins. This process ensures the unique character of Escudo.
Notes: Produced by the Cope brothers from 1912 to 1952, at which point they were bought by Gallaher, which produced Escudo until discontinuing it in 1994. A&C Petersen began production in 1997, with the original recipe and presses. Escudo was pulled from US market in 2000 but sold elsewhere. In 2004, production was moved to Orlik/STG and Escudo was reintroduced to the US in 2006.


Brand Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG)
Blended By  
Manufactured By Scandinavian Tobacco Group
Blend Type Virginia/Perique
Contents Perique, Virginia
Cut Curly Cut
Packaging 50 grams tin
Country Denmark
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

3.48 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 10 of 108 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 16, 2012 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
Late 1990s to circa 2005 A.C.Peterson version: The Virginias provided a fair amount of tart and tangy citrus, tangy dark fruit, vegetative grass, bread, sugar, earth, wood, hay, mild foralness, tart lemon, and light spice as the lead components. The spicy, raisiny, plummy, figgy, earthy, woody, moderately sweet perique was a supporting player. Had an obvious prune topping. The strength, nic-hit and taste levels were a notch past the medium mark. Didn’t bite or get harsh. Had a few small rough edges. Burned cool, clean and a tad slow with a very consistent VaPer flavor. It was more citrusy and grassy than the Murray’s Deluxe Navy Rolls at the time, and a couple of step less fuller. Wasn’t an day smoke. Four stars.

Circa 2006-2013: It didn’t change that much. It was a little lighter overall than the A.C. Peterson version with a higher degree of vegetative grass and hay, and a tad less sweet and spicy. The dark fruit, earth, wood, and sugar were mildly lower. The strength, nic-hit and taste levels were medium. The rough edges were slightly higher. Burn rate was the same. Wasn’t an all day smoke. This was a three and a half star experience. Was a little further away from Navy Rolls than before.

2014-2022: This version had a duller Virginia presence using youthful Stokkebye stock with very little dark fruit earth and wood due the the use of lighter Virginias. Was more grassy, too. The perique remained the same with a tad more plummy presence, and that much less spice. It also had a light sour acidity that was never present in earlier manufacturers. The prune topping was lightly weaker. The strength, nic-hit and taste levels were a step below the medium mark. Had a few more rough edges than all previous productions. Burn rate didn’t change. This was a two and a half star blend that I lowered to a two star rating due to the mild, but heightened astringency. Had a smaller similarity to Navy Rolls than what I reported in the second paragraph.

5-16-2023 Update: The citrus level is a little higher now with less tartness. No dark fruit exists here now. Earth and wood are minimally present. The lemon notes have very slightly lessened to mild. It has a little more bread and sugar, and is a touch more floral and spicier. Has a fairly high grass content, though the vegetative aspects are very light. Acidity is very slight. Due to the severe reduction of the perique content, it is a condiment now. Very mild spice, barely has any figs and raisins, and the plum is lightly more obvious than the spice notes, but much less than before. The prune topping is very mild, more so than at any previous time. The strength, nic-hit, and taste levels are a couple of steps below the medium mark now. Rough edges are minimal. Burn rate hasn’t changed. The flavor is less complex than all previous productions although the astringency of the previous Escudo has vanished. It’s an all day smoke now. Two and a half stars upped to three because this is a more pleasant smoke than the 2014-2022 manufacture even if it is different. My current ratings are reflective of the 2023 product.

77 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 17, 2014 Medium Very Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
The presentation is excellent. The tin smells great - figs and hay - just a whiff of spice. It was a little damp when I started the tin, and I mostly smoked it without drying. Moisture was perfect by the end of the tin. I smoked this folded and rubbed out. I never tried cubing it.

It was a good Va/Per which I claim has some topping that contributes to the sweet. The perique was condiment+. You notice it, and it contributes to the flavor. There is a slight suggestion of caramel in taste, but it is really just good golden Virginia with a citrus, grassy, slightly sweet taste and a mildly peppery perique.

This tobacco has some serious fans, and I thought it was good. I only bought one tin and did not buy another when I finished it. In this type of blend, I think PS Luxury Navy Flake is just as good and comes at a better price point.

Having said all this, Escudo is a standard that probably every pipe smoker should try. You might be one of the fans. Even if you don't decide to buy it 10 tins at a time, you will know what others are talking about.
38 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 20, 2015 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Tolerable
My first review. This is for the current incarnation of escudo. Tin was purchased in May 2014 at Carmel Pipe Shop in Carmel CA during a vacation last year.

A bit about me, the reviewer. I am a relatively new pipe smoker and never used tobacco prior to being introduced to pipes through a friend and The League Pipe Club in Denver, CO. I have been smoking a variety of tobaccos to try and develop my pallate to understand the nuances and learn to appreciate what each archtype brings to the hobby. Thus I chose Escudo for the purpose of exploring the world of VaPers.

Presentation: The tins used by Scandinavian Tobacco Group speak of quality and, unlike the canned food pop-top tins of many American blends, provide a wide mouth lined with a corrugated paper liner that serves to contain the inevitable spillage when loading a pipe. The tin kept the tobacco moist for over a year after opening. The Escudo leaf itself is beauty to behold, the neatly stacked deli slices of rolled tobacco unlike anything else I have yet seen.

Tin Aroma: Sweet like the aroma of a pile of fall leaves moistened by night dew and gently warmed by the morning sun. There is also a hint of something fruit like, perhaps currant or raisin.

Texture: The deli slices are moist and pliable. The slices  unroll into chunky strands each made up of several layers of leaf that do not easily rub out. I had trouble with moisture with this blend. It took a week of drying time in Denver to get the slices sufficiently dry such that i could keep an ember in the pipe without drawing hard enough to bite or rasp the pallate. The flakes were still pliable and not crunchy. Other blends have become crunchy dry in this climate in as little as fifteen minutes, leading me to suspect that this blend is lightly topped with a humectant.

Flavor: I clearly pick up light virginia upon first light similar to the flavor of Dunhill Flake. The perique makes itself known subsequently through an additional astringency and pepper sensation. The flavors appear well balanced and I can see why this is a highly regarded mixture.  However, this one has bitten me several times. I have difficulty finding the balance between keeping the ember and over stoking this, which is what brings out bite. This is complicated by my experience with relights being astringent and resultingly unpleasant. I have yet to identify the plum flavor mentioned by other reviewers.

Mouth feel: The smoke feels thin compared to blends containing small amounts of latakia or a base of red Virginia, but fuller than a pure light Virginia such as Dunhill flake. Puffing strong enough to bring forth more than whips of smoke leads to extreme astringency and associated bite.

Overall: It seems silly to say, but the most important factor for me in a pipe tobacco is overall enjoyment of the smoking experience. As described above, Escudo is difficult for me to smoke, which detracts from my overall satisfaction with the mixture. However the flavor is clearly definitive of the style. As a result, while I give this three of four stars I will likely not purchase again soon.
PurchasedFrom: Carmel Pipe Shop in Carmel CA
Age When Smoked: 1 year
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 28, 2013 Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
This is a very nice VaPer. Love the coins. Wish it had just a little more body.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Sep 07, 2002 Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
I bought 12 tins of this, untasted, when the rumor went around that it would no longer be produced. I don't regret that purchase, but I think 2 tins would have sufficed.

Escudo is a stout Virginia/Perique blend in a delightful "coin" cut. While some simply fold the coin into the bowl, I get better flavor from a medium rub-out consistency. The flavor is dark and rich, of considerable strength in both flavor and nicotine. It is satisfying. It is not, however, complex, and it can burn and lose most of its flavor by hot smoking. The Virginia leaf was clearly intended to lean towards the bass and middle-bass flavor spectrums, but I occasionally find myself wishing that some of the high-quality leaf had been allowed to remain in a zestier, sweeter state to balance the blend.

A permanent fixture in my rotation, but not in the top 20 frequently-smoked category.
6 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 21, 2016 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
I placed an order and received both Dunhill Deluxe Navy Rolls and STG Escudo at the same time. The tin note is a sweet & tangy aroma commensurate with the fine quality tobaccos used in these blends ... I have a tough time distinguishing the difference between these two based solely upon my sniffer. Both VaPer blends are pressed & rolled cut coins. Escudo does appear to be just ever so slightly lighter in color. Both baccys were slightly moist from the tin .... IMO just the right amount of moisture for using my preferred fold & stuff method of loading into the pipe. I had no trouble getting either blend to accept a decent char light. The Escudo is a delicious smoking experience (as is DDNR) nonetheless I detect a little less sweetness in flavor & aroma from the Escudo. The room note is quite appealing. Me thinks only the most hardcore olfactory recipients suffering from "tobacco-envy" would object to this heavenly aroma.
Pipe Used: Briars (Canadians, Lovats, & Billiards)
Age When Smoked: Fresh
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 12, 2014 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
I bought a tin of this a while back as I've been honing my pallette for VaPer blends. I was not let down. The presentation of the coins inside were of an outstanding quality and the best I've ever seen. The moisture level was spot on and they rubbed out to very thin ribbons with the gentlest of touch. With the char light the va really sang a sweet note. On progression it developed that spicy nose tickle any pirique lover looks for. I didn't find it over whelming and really balanced with the va. I'll most likely cellar a few tins of this because what I've seen aged developed beautiful crystals and this tobacco will be sought after when production ends. Also, the price point for this kind of quality is awesome. Paul
Pipe Used: Paul Menard lazy poker,reversed calabash pot
PurchasedFrom: local shop
Age When Smoked: 2yrs
5 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 09, 2012 Mild Mild Mild Pleasant to Tolerable
Smoothest VaPer I've ever had. Lots of sweetness from Virginias, mildly spicy from Perique. Very mellow, no bite, lots of smoke. My tin is about a year old, and the aging really helped. Much more mellow than when new. A bit too mild for me, as are all Stokkebye blends I've tried. I love Perique, so I would like more of it in this blend. Escudo is not super complex, but is a great blend for VaPer fans, and for aromatic smokers who want to branch out.

Three stars.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 06, 2016 Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant
I have not smoked ESCUDO NAVY DE LUXE for many years. The only fact I remember, is that Escudo changed producer several times in the past, and that the taste of this mixture changed considerably each time. I shall not go into this, though. My review is based on the presently available edition.

Neatly arranged Curly Cut discs and flavourful smell of Virginia-hay and fruity Perique out of the tin. Moisture is on the damp side, some may want to give it a short drying time. For me it’s ok to smoke straight out of the tin. I do not rub it out, I break and stuff the coins into my pipe for best results. Cool and excellent burning conditions. First class selection of robust Virginias, without being too strong. Typical Virginia flavours with a distinct note of earth. I miss a fuller development of the Virginia flavours though. In the second half of the bowl the Perique becomes more obviously present, eventually taking the lead towards the end.

ESCUDO NAVY DE LUXE is obviously a sibling of DE LUXE NAVY ROLLS. Both are manufactured by STG Scandinavian Tobacco Group, by the way. It is very interesting to compare these two! You will find many subtle differences. But I am not going into this here.

No doubt, ESCUDO NAVY DE LUXE is a high end Va/Per generally deserving 4 stars. I personally prefer mixtures with a fuller aroma from the Virginias and I’d also prefer to have the aromas of Perique released more regularly from the beginning on. Therefore Escudo is a 3 star for me.
PurchasedFrom: Via internet,
Age When Smoked: New, out of tin.
4 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jan 24, 2013 Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
Now this is a tobacco that was well worth the wait. Another one of those "legendary" blends, benchmark of all VA/PERs. Very similar to Davidoff's F.M. but even my unrefined palette tells the difference, slight though I find it. At 5 bucks cheaper then F.M. I can see myself stocking up on this stuff. Tin aroma is sweet, not sharp. Very, very pleasent smoke. A must try for VA/PER lovers as well as a great, affordable introduction to this type of tobacco. I recommend this, for sure.
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