Butera Golden Cake

Bright, golden Virginia long leaf, ripened to perfection, mellowed for years. Flue cured until fully seasoned.


Brand Butera
Series Royal Vintage
Blended By McClelland Tobacco Company
Manufactured By McClelland Tobacco Company
Blend Type Straight Virginia
Contents Virginia
Cut Broken Flake
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
Pleasant to Tolerable
Unnoticeable -> Overwhelming
Extremely Mild (Flat) -> Overwhelming

Average Rating

3.33 / 4





Please login to post a review.
Displaying 1 - 10 of 14 Reviews
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 02, 2014 Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant
Chestnut brown with shades of tan, this broken flake has the signature McClelland fermented Virginia tin nose that people seem either to love or hate. I happen to love it. The flakes are cut thinner than many McClelland VA's, so it's much easier to rub out and load. Takes to the match very well without the need for over-drying. In fact, I smoked this one with more moisture content than I typically do with flakes.

As I was smoking this, I was wracking my brain to try and figure out which McC blend this was. I went back through everything I could find and could not come up with anything. I presume that since this is a Butera blend, there may have been some sort of agreement between the two parties to make it unique, and it is. I'm not the biggest straight lemon VA fan there is, but this one has made me a believer. There's no overemphasis on sweetness or honey or citrus. This has a decently sweet flavor but there is a nice spice as well, almost perique-like but not quite. More hay than grass, but both descriptors do this blend an injustice by hinting that it is just another straight VA. It's not. This may be the finest example of an Old belt bright leaf tobacco blend in existence. Perhaps even better than the Cut Virginia Plug I just smoked from F&T. They are different from each other but this one seems further off the beaten path. This one has a lot more dimension to it than most of its kind. McClellands, who probably own the crown of finest virginia blend producer in the U.S, earned it on the strength of blends like this. Then again, it's Mike Butera's recipe. 🙂
Pipe Used: meerschaum and morta
Age When Smoked: Two years
16 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Apr 21, 2002 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
This blend came to me in a 4 year old unopened tin. Being a straight Virginia flake, I thought the aging would make this blend extra special, and indeed it was. It was naturally sweet, with a hint of sweet hay as I puffed which deepened as I worked my way down the bowl. A slow burning leaf that never bit. Very enjoyable and the tin didn't last long.


9 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Oct 07, 2013 Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
This is a super golden Va. Seriously. A lot of McClelland Va's are misses with me. I really like MV 24 and Rich Virginia Ribbon if that tells you anything about my tastes, but many other McC Va's start out great and soon sink into blandness for me.

Butera Golden Cake has no McClelland equivalent. It's a unique flake they make for the Butera series. In terms of casing, I sometimes feel this has some added honey going on, but I don't always get that impression, so it's a pretty clean straight Va.

This one is very full flavored for a McC Va. It isn't terribly complex, but the flavor really delivers to the end of the bowl. It's pretty sweet, occasionally showing honey notes. Not as grassy as a lot of golden Va's. Overall the biggest impression is tobacco, not the sugar, and that's why I like it so much. The closest tobacco I could compare this to is Samuel Gawith's Medium Virginia Flake, but they are quite different. They are like these two house's interpretation of the same ideal, which is a lovely, sugary golden Va flake. I adore both tobaccos and they're a couple of my very favorite warm weather smokes.

I rate Golden Cake very high, without reservation one of my top ten tobaccos, and a sleeper Va that will delight Va smokers, even if other McClelland Va's haven't done it for you.

update 21March2016: I wanted to give a shout out to DK. When I first started exploring Va's his reviews here were vital to me. When you find someone here you've identified as having a similar palate it really saves you a lot of time exploring new genres of tobacco by using their experience to guide you. Coming from Latakia and Burley blends, I found DK's prolific body of reviews here extraordinarily helpful, so thank you very much DK!
8 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 04, 2005 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable
Butera?s Royal Vintage Golden Cake is a zesty flue-cured bright pipe tobacco blended by the McClelland Tobacco Company.

The tin aroma is very tangy with a naturally sweet, bread-like undertone. The aroma is strong in the acidic dimension but enjoyably so. Golden cake is composed of a high quality long leaf Virginia tobacco. The color of this tobacco is of a lighter caramel/gold and has strips of yellow throughout. A generous amount of sugar crystals are present on this tobacco.

Butera?s Golden Cake is layered and aged in cakes then cut into large and thick flakes. The flakes are softer than many other similar flake tobaccos and they rub out averagely well. The blend also packs well. The flakes have a medium high initial moisture level but eliminating the moisture does not tend to alter any of the tobacco?s smoking characteristics.

Golden Cake lights readily and evenly, and when considered relatively to other flake tobaccos, it does so wonderfully. The blend burns and spreads nicely and does not require over drawing to keep the tobacco burning. The ash is soft and without any dottle. The room note is medium in strength and has an enjoyable tartness.

The flavor of Golden Cake is tangy but has a definite sweet dimension with a true warm Virginia tobacco taste. Golden Cake is not stoved and because of this has little dark spiciness but instead has interplay between the sweet and the sour. Golden Cake smokes best with full steady draws, which yields the best taste from the tobacco and the least amount of tongue bite. This blend does not smoke overly hot considering its components. The smoke produced is medium.

Butera?s Royal Vintage Golden Cake is a great example of a bright Virginia Flake tobacco. The blend has wonderfully distinct yet well-proportioned flavors, a welcome contrast to the equally enjoyable deep stoved blends.
5 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 29, 2017 Mild None Detected Medium Pleasant
Butera's recipes for McClelland are very underrated. Golden Cake is maybe the best. I came to this blend late but I now have it as a regular in my rotation. Its a straight up unadorned Virginia. Not heavily stoved, if at all, but pressed into dark blond flakes. Reminds one a bit of Best Brown Flake (but considerably darker and fuller...though there is a resemblance in taste).. But better IMHO. if you like lighter virginias on occasion (lemon virginia i would guess in this case), with real sweetness from the tobacco and not from any casing, then this is for you.

Addendum: I have to say after a year of smoking this blend, alongside McCellands 1776, Blackwoods Flake, and even Gawith's FVF.....I think this is perhaps my favorite straight virginia. I suppose it depends on one's love of a particular varietal....or if you like more stoving or any number of things. But yo cannot beat this for full flavor, cool burning, no bite, and simply elegant complexity. A ten star blend.
PurchasedFrom: 4noggins
4 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Mar 21, 2016 Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable
An outstanding, well rounded smoke. A fairly strong note of hay with a nice tang to it. A little more sour than sweet. Just a hint of something similar to lemon and a touch of spice. Has a mild sharpness on the retrohale that gives it a nice edginess. Great in briar and clay, but a cob brings out the flavor just a little better. I like it best chopped and dry. Burns very well.

Medium in body and taste. I can't detect any honey or other additives. Not terribly complex, just a straight-forward, very well done Virginia flake.
Pipe Used: Nording Dublin, MM Country Gentleman, MF #9
PurchasedFrom: smokingpipes.com
Age When Smoked: 6 months
4 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Jun 11, 2017 Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant
Butera - Golden Cake.

Because of the name I thought a Sunday morning would make the perfect relaxed time to sit, unrushed, and prepare a krumble kake. So I felt a bit moronic when I opened it this morning to be met by flakes! Which leads me onto my next point nicely: whole flakes, not broken ones as the description states. They're fairly dark, and medium in thickness.

Golden Cake screams quality. It has more of a genteel flavour, than just being Virginia-sweet, or sharp grass, alone. There's a delicate sweetness, just enough, and a slightly grassy/hay-like note; not as sharp as is often found in Va's. When I retro-hale the flavour becomes sweeter, and the hay note diminishes. Flawless, this describes the burn perfectly: relatively cool, and extremely consistent.

I quite like the room-note, and the nicotine from it's mild to medium.

One of the best straight Virginia's there is.

Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: BBB Sprint
PurchasedFrom: 4noggins
Age When Smoked: Four months
3 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Feb 10, 2018 Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant
This is blended by McClelland's, in my opinion, one of the best "Virginia" blenders out there. It does have the familiar sweet and sour McClelland flavors, It has nice balance between high and base notes, it is spicy as you smoke the first 1/3 of the bowl but calms down during the last 2/3's'. Very flavorful on relights, no bite and ample "N". Interesting through the whole smoke. Reminds me of McC "Boston 1776"
Pipe Used: Cob
Age When Smoked: 5 years old , 2months open
2 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
Dec 26, 2015 Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant
Mike and Mary has gone all out for this one . Very high quality Virginias with a nice sugar content . The tin note is outstanding and the taste , well , something else . This tobacco gives you a true burn with carful packing and delievers taste down to the bottom of the bowl . A really good use of what seems to be old belt Virginia , seldom used today . The tobacco changes in complexity as one smokes the bowl down . The best flavor comes near the end . This is really a quality smoke , just enjoy it
Pipe Used: other Mc Clleland virginias
2 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.
Reviewed By Date Rating Strength Flavoring Taste Room Note
May 07, 2015 Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Unnoticeable
Lately I have been on an aged Virginia kick and have been looking high and low for aged McClelland tins. Golden Cake is one of the most distinctive tobacco's in that it is mostly Lemon Virginias, the other being Fribourg & Treyer's Golden Mixture (which I will review next). I had mostly intact flakes in my tin, very large flakes (for McClelland), nice little squares of gold and differing shades of yellow. Tin aroma is typical McClelland with citrus notes. These golden tobacco's need to be sipped and let gently smolder or else you will lose all flavor and create a little blast furnace in your pipe that will scorch your tongue and melt your palate (not really but damn close). Lemon Virginia when un toasted and left in its mostly original state gives extreme sweetness, very high notes and a fine citrus taste, another reviewer mentioned sweet and sour which is a perfect description! Like a Chinese sweet & sour chicken sauce almost. Unnoticeable room note which is neither pleasant or offensive, it's just there, and is also very thin not thick with body like a black Cavendish. Golden Cake is NOT the flake for beginners, not forgiving of careless technique and will bite losing all it's flavor with high temps, but if allowed to smolder, will become quite the treat on a scorching Nevada day. A fine summertime smoke that's very refreshing when it is 115* outside, basically the complete opposite of say Nightcap which is one of my favorite wintertime smokes. Not an everyday smoke (for me) but sitting by the pool with an Iced Tea and a Cob it is certainly worth having a tin around for its uniqueness and when rubbed out makes a fine blender as well. I like having the complete spectrum of McClelland Virginia colors on hand, Yellow Golden Cake, Orange Christmas Cheer, Black Dark Star and Virgina Woods which incorporates all the colors and variety. McClelland makes the best Virginia's (IMHO) I just wish they made larger flakes like the Gawith boys and that they had a flake with strength like 1792 or Dark Flake.... Although extremely tasty and top shelf, I cannot find a blend made by them with the nicotine I desire and need to either blend in 5 Bros. or smoke a bowl of something strong afterwards to get a buzz...
PurchasedFrom: Windy City Cigar
Age When Smoked: 2012 - 3 years old
2 people found this review helpful.
Please login to upvote this review.