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3 stooge Review start [ Inks , Kerr , Gold ]

ruffinogold

Well-Known Member
Mayor
#1
Ok , I'm gonna start with a review . I'd ask that we wait till Inks and Kerr have posted theirs before we start commenting all over the place . This way it's easier to read the three together [ if thats possible ] . Anyway ....

MacBaren Virginia Flake

Ruffs Review

For me , MB VF is about as straight a Virginia as I like . Any straighter it would be raw . It does have a very very slight touch of " something " ... maybe the honey water that MB eluded to a bit ago . Whatever it is , it's barely there and without it , it would diminish the blend , imo .
I respect the cut [ flake ] of this product . Not that I dont enjoy the thick chunk McClelland flake , I do , but this style flake [ on the thin side ] is easier to deal with in any regard . The Flake also breaks up and or rubs out like a breeze . It's highly workable , however you want to work it without much effort . It's a plus and just another near perfect presentation that MacBaren are the masters of .
Well , is it a masterful blend ? It lights well and stays lit very easily for me and burns a whitish ash . Smokes dry . At this point it is perfect but thats where perfect stops . The Char light brings a little sharpness and a touch of extra warmth , which does settle thankfully but this never settles down to smoke as cool as say Dunhill Flake . The flavor is semi sweet typical Virginia . It doesnt go too hayish or lemony or too full or too sweet .... it's lacking in any real upfront characteristic . It's a little bit of all the above in an even way . At mid bowl it builds but only slightly with a little punch through here and there with some brighter flavor . Really , imagine MB Scottish without the Burley and Cavendish and this is what I imagine it would be ... Scottish stripped down to it's Virginia components . It has warm moments that leave a tingle ... it's almost a spice tingle but it isnt . I dont mean to over exaggerate . I mean if it smoked hot and nasty , I wouldnt have been smoking this three days straight plus a good bit for a week before . It just doesnt deserve a stellar review compared to other virginias ... Really , this blend is similar to Newminster Navy Flake but without the Rum that Newminster has , which is also a bulk blend as this is bulk and in tin . Both are made by MB .

It's a good + blend but theres other Virginias I'd smoke ... notably , Dunhill and Orlik , as far as common known blends . As far as a bulk Virginia .. really this and Newminster are pretty damn good , especially for the money [ both are very reasonable ] . I prefer Newminster Navy for the added topnote . But this is a good straight Virginia with little embellishment
 
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#2
Here's mine:
A fairly natural tasting straight up light, bright Virginia flake. There's a basic citrus sweetness from the tobacco conjoining with a grassy taste - no hay - to provide a mild, gentle smoking experience. Has a minor spice note. Not a flavor bomb by any means, but it's a comfortable all day smoke that burns fairly slowly and cool without leaving any moisture at the bottom. The taste is consistent all the way through. Has a mild nic-hit. Can burn a little warm if puffed fast, but won't bite. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and needs a few relights. Can be an all day smoke.
 

dmkerr

PG- free since '83!
Staff member
Moderator
#3
If you find other Virginia flakes too complex or too citrusy or too this or that, meet your Baby Bear. This isn't too anything - ok, maybe a bit too boring for me - but it doesn't lean in any one direction. It has some citrus and grass but it doesn't go overboard with either. There is a touch of some kind of topping that mostly burns away during the top quarter bowl, after which it settles down into "good enough" territory. Thankfully it eschews most of the real problems I have with a lot of Mac Baren blends in that it doesn't have that sugary-sweet pastry Cavendish that, while not goopy, just doesn't taste natural. Then again, "natural" can be overrated. A very famous blender touts one of his Virginia blends as having no additives or flavorings. Unfortunately, it never gets off the ground. Not everything tastes best to us in its natural state, so unless you're prone to licking raw syrup off a maple tree, don't sweat the additives and flavorings. Unless they get into Ruff-approved Gooper territory - then run! Had to, Ruff! :D

This one doesn't fly you away, either. It's a very serviceable Virginia that comes cheaply in bulk and will do your tastebuds no harm. It smokes dry and cool and never got irritable, even when I overpuffed to see how it would react. It isn't complex but it's a nice "steady Eddie" in the flavor department. Perfect for when you're focused on other things, as you'll never get a mouth-buzzing "A-ha!" moment with this one. It doesn't have the spicy undertones of Dunhill Flake, nor the pure pizzaz of anything from McClellands nor the complexity and depth of Sam Gawith. But for me it's one of those blends that are fine until you discover something better... which won't take much time if you experiment. Then again, you could do worse.

I see this as a Virginia smoker's OTC. Nothing wrong with that if it's your thing.
 

ruffinogold

Well-Known Member
Mayor
#10
I'm so impressed ! Kerr only used one foo foo word [ eschews ] . I dont even know what that means and I'm afraid to look it up .

I'm liking this thread because I dont consider myself a " reviewer " , or at least not a very good one , and comparing these I realize that mine do actually make sense too

I

I see this as a Virginia smoker's OTC. Nothing wrong with that if it's your thing.
Excellent review , Kerr ... but , man ... that says it all ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
 

dmkerr

PG- free since '83!
Staff member
Moderator
#11
I'm so impressed ! Kerr only used one foo foo word [ eschews ] . I dont even know what that means and I'm afraid to look it up .

I'm liking this thread because I dont consider myself a " reviewer " , or at least not a very good one , and comparing these I realize that mine do actually make sense too



Excellent review , Kerr ... but , man ... that says it all ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Eschews... what one wears on ones efeet. :ohyh:
 

ruffinogold

Well-Known Member
Mayor
#17
Here's mine:
A fairly natural tasting straight up light, bright Virginia flake. There's a basic citrus sweetness from the tobacco conjoining with a grassy taste - no hay - to provide a mild, gentle smoking experience. Has a minor spice note. Not a flavor bomb by any means, but it's a comfortable all day smoke that burns fairly slowly and cool without leaving any moisture at the bottom. The taste is consistent all the way through. Has a mild nic-hit. Can burn a little warm if puffed fast, but won't bite. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and needs a few relights. Can be an all day smoke.
I think you need to keep your reviews shorter , Jim . These common words you use arent fooling anyone ... everyone knows you're echewing from the froo froo that you naturally spew ... you :beck: