Rattray Macbeth

Macbeth is based on an old recipe, but the taste is still timely. Enjoy the natural aroma of pure, fully ripe Virginia the best quality in combination with burley. Sometimes the most delicious blends do not require many ingredients. "Macbeth" is the best proof.


Brand Rattray
Series British Collection
Blended By Kohlhase & Kopp
Manufactured By Kohlhase & Kopp
Blend Type Virginia/Burley
Contents Burley, Virginia
Flavoring Fruit / Citrus
Cut Ribbon
Packaging 50 grams tin, 100 grams tin
Country Germany
Production Currently available


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

Average Rating

2.40 / 4





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Displaying 1 - 5 of 5 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 17, 2016 Mild to Medium Very Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant
This is a very attractive tobacco blend, with an overall mahogany hue. Closer examination reveals some darker bits, grading to light tan virginias, but nothing resembling black cavendish. Moisture is perfect for me, and the tin note is very fruity. The fruit aroma is more citrus than darker dried fruits such as raisins or figs.

Macbeth packs very easily using the three-stage method. I usually use the Frank method, which works very well with this. Two matches and it's lit.

The flavor is on the light side, and is primarily Virginia. I can tell there is some Burley in there but can't pick out individual flavors. This is definitely fruity, but to me the predominant flavor is tobacco. There is some essence added that I can't identify, but I would not call this an aromatic. There is also some bitey tingle, which I would attribute to red Virginia, as I am sensitive to the red. It is not distracting, though. Nicotine is evident, but never gets over mild-medium. Overall a very pleasant smoke that I enjoy.

It is worth noting that this is purported to be K&K's version of Peterson's Sherlock Holmes after Peterson switched blending houses from K&K to Mac Baren a couple years ago. The tobacco looks and smells identical in the tin to SH, but the taste is a little lighter with a tad less nicotine. The bite, to me, is a little more evident in Macbeth than SH, but it is not overly so. If I had to choose, I would give the nod to SH, but I enjoy both. 3.5 stars.
Pipe Used: Sorn Dublin
Age When Smoked: 1 year
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Aug 23, 2016 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
A very nice VaBur. The Virginias are sweet hay. The Burley is a little sweet and a shade more nutty than earthy. More Burley here than in 40 Virginia making this a little more fuller and rounder. It can burn just a little warm if you puff like I do, but it maintains it's flavor nicely. Solid 3 stars.

Mild to medium in body. Medium in taste. No added flavorings. Burns very well. I notice some folks aren't getting much flavor from this. I get plenty in a cob. That may be the difference. Haven't tried this in a a briar and I probably won't. Burley suits me better in a cob.
Pipe Used: MM Little Devil Cutty, Little Devil Acorn, Marcus
PurchasedFrom: smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: fresh
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 26, 2016 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant
Rattray - Macbeth.

The tin contains a perfectly medium brown tobacco, that's all there is to say about that! It's of a good moistness, just ready to be smoked straight-off. At first the blend seems 'no nonsense', that is, until I put my nose to the tin; I have to concur with O'Confrere from 11/03/14: it smells quite heavily of fruit.

Once it's in my pipe and burning, that's when I get nonplussed; there is a fruity edge, but it's nowhere near as strong as the tin note had implied. Actually, there's not much more than the usual citrus/fruit flavours that would normally hail from Virginia, without the addition of any toppings.

Aside from the superbly loud and brash Virginia, I also get a very good taste of Burley: it's nutty, slightly toasty, and it sort of brings the blend back down to earth and stops the Virginia being a show-off!

Regarding strength, I feel comfortable putting it in the mild-medium category. I wouldn't quantify it as mild alone, it gives me just a bit more than that.

Problems? Well, I'm starting to think that this may arise from my style as it's a common issue for me lately: speed of burn. With my first bowl of Macbeth, I put the tamper to the bowl to adjust the smoke, and it shot to the bottom; I was tamping ash! It had all burned in no time at all!

Forgetting my rubbish style of piping though, I somewhat enjoy this; I don't 'four-star-love-it', but I do 'three-star-like-it'!


Pipe Used: Levent Meerschaum Claw
PurchasedFrom: My Smoking Shop
Age When Smoked: Four months
3 people found this review helpful.
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 29, 2022 Mild Mild Mild Pleasant
I am pretty sure that Rattray's Macbeth is clone of Peterson Sherlock Holmes.

Appearance: both blends look the same, except that the Macbeth was a little brighter in hue. It's a quality fine ribbon cut of three varieties of Virginia, dominated by orange, added a small amount of burley, which may well get lost in such an abundance of Virginia. The tobacco in both tins was a little moist, which I mentioned to its freshness, but did not contain excessive glycerin or propylene glycol. Judging by the sample I have from the 2015 tin and the year difference between the Sherlock Holmes (February 2021) and Macbeth (summer 2022) tins, the blend darkens rather quickly as it ages, taking on a milk chocolate hue.

Flavor: Sherlock Holmes and Macbeth have an almost identical flavor from the tin, except for one minor detail that I will mention. When I opened the tin, I felt an unobtrusive but quite perceptible flavor of topping. Its composition is unknown to me, but the topping gave off an aroma consisting of notes of apricot, anise, and a slight lemon note. In the case of Macbeth, a bit of corn molasses was also nailed to these notes, and the presence of extra sugar listed in the formulation of both tobaccos suggested that it was indeed present. Why molasses is less in Sherlock Holmes than it is in Macbeth, I don't know. But after a couple or three minutes, its flavor in the Macbeth weakened so much that in a blind test I would hardly have picked up the difference. When the flavor of the topping dissipated a little, the tobacco notes came through, clearly indicating that I had the most common Virginia blend with a very small amount of burley in front of me. The wheat, hay and especially the woody notes came through a little more brightly, the nutty and earthy burley notes were muted. The blend, while very simple in composition, was equally uncomplicated in aroma.

Taste: I wasn't particularly surprised that both tobaccos were also similar by taste, so I'll describe their taste without remarks to one or the other. The sweetish flavor of the topping is present until about the middle of the pipe, but is especially noticeable in the beginning of smoking, where it is represented by the lightest apricot note, anise spice and sweetness. In addition to the topping, you definitely feel the Virginia bread note framed by dried fruit, wood tones and a slight nutty, almondy, cocoa notes of burley, which is barely enough to add density to the blend and smoke. And here I must mention one minor flaw in the blend. Unfortunately, in fresh tobacco, the overall flavor doesn't add up to a unified ensemble until about the middle of the pipe, the birch and Virginia exist on their own. To understand this, I had to smoke a pipe of seven-year-old Sherlock Holmes, and its taste was more whole and the topping less obvious. Like all blends dominated by Virginia, this one requires attention to the smoking rate, overheating the pipe quite easily and giving the smoke a bitter aftertaste that turns smoking into torture. But even so, the blend doesn't bite. If you smoke it slowly, towards the middle the taste begins to be dominated by woody notes, through which sometimes a fruity sweetness of Virginia or a light nutty note of burly comes through. Some may not like this kaleidoscope, but it didn't bother me at all. The strength of the tobacco is mild, only smoking it in a extra large pipe at the end of the day I felt something akin to a slight nicotine hit. The blend slowly burns into a fine gray ash with some slightly darker large fractions, leaving some moisture in the pipe. There is virtually no aftertaste from the tobacco.

The smoke has a distinct woody note and wears off almost instantly without irritating those around you.

What is the result? First of all, I will note that Sherlock Holmes is copied very precisely by the Germans. As for the overall impression of the tobacco: it is a quiet, predictable blend of low strength, which allows you to consider it as a good everyday tobacco. It has almost no brightness in flavor and aroma, and by that it may seem boring to some. Other things being equal, I would prefer Laurel Heights by Gregory Pease with just a little bit of latakia for the fullness of flavor, and someone might like Montgomery blend with a little Kentucky for the same. However, fans of Peterson products can be calm - if the rumors turn out to be true, you have Macbeth.
Pipe Used: Peterson 80s, 106, 150, 999
PurchasedFrom: Smuggled from EU
Age When Smoked: 2022
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Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jul 07, 2019 Very Mild Medium Mild Pleasant
Thin ribbon cut, somewhat springy. Ready to smoke straight from tin. Aromas of raspberry, sweet Virginia and some dark fruits. Takes the light very well and requires few relights. Initial flavours of raspberry, dark fruits, and some nutty burley. The Virginia’s are the main player once you get into this. They are grassy and very smooth. The fruity notes are present for the entire bowl but do not overpower in any way. The burley is a condiment and I do not find it noticeable after the first few puffs. This is a very well balanced blend that needs to be smoked slow to experience the wide range of subtle flavours. In my experience it pairs exceptionally well with a morning coffee. I experience no tongue bite no matter how hard I smoke it. The nicotine effect for me is not noticeable, therefore I will say it is very mild in that department.
Pipe Used: Cobs and briars
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