A Large Number of Virginia Posts Without a Consensus

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Preferred Member
Feb 15, 2017
United States
I have searched the archives but cannot find anything more than lists of favorites.
If you have to pick one and only one Virginia Flake to smoke for the rest of your pipe-smoking years, which would you choose?
I have never smoked FVF, 502, or many of the other flakes so often mentioned. So, before I spend any upcoming gift cards, I would enjoy hearing your "ONE" pick. Give me guidance.
The only pure VA flake I have smoked is Klondike Gold (thanks to Tim). It is obviously not an option since production has ceased.



Preferred Member
Aug 9, 2013
It’s a little more varried than, “what is the best wine,” in that wines have a set of particulars held by tradition, history, culture. Virginias are all over the board. The best is whatever is in my pipe at the moment. Favorites are just as varried. With an ice cold Mt Dew on a sunny day driving in the mountains, I might want Mac Barrens Virginia #1. On a wet rainy day, with a cup of coffee on the porch, I might want a Rattrays. Working at my bench, I might want to savor a McClelland. It just depends. My advice is to go swimming. Grab one of each in an order, or if you can, three of each. One for now, one for three years down the road, and one to find in the back of your cellar in old age. If it’s a Virginia, from shag to plug, it cannot be bad. There’s a lot of difference, but none of them suck entirely.

And, for this to work, everyone has to totally disregard my years of berating a couple of companies for my “initial” responces on reviews over the years. Eh, I was younger then... :puffy:



Preferred Member
Jul 30, 2016
Klondike Gold is still the best, but you can't go wrong with Dunhill Flake or Full Virginia Flake.



Preferred Member
Oct 14, 2014
Let’s turn this thread around.
There is a ton of variety in both blend constituents and curing processes and blending goals that make up every straight va blend. You might do best to try an example from within each of the sub styles within the straight va blend family.
Light va’s- a lot of citrus, some bread, some grassiness, ex; Gawiths golden glow, Butera’s golden cake

Med va’s- good bit of grass, some chocolate, malty, a little bit of citrus, blends heavy with reds often exhibit a spicy tang, ex; Hal o’ the wynd, Best brown flake, Capstan blue, dunhill Flake

Dark va’s-raisin, plum, prune notes over bread and a little hay and a bit of spice, ex; Fvf, Dark Star



Preferred Member
Jun 15, 2013
And still no consensus. That's the beauty of pipes and pipe tobaccos. There is no "the best", there is only "your best" and that may change on a dime.



Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
Burley lovers just love burley. They have their favorites, but they just can't resist that flavor. Virginia lovers are connoisseurs. They are like generals or brain surgeons, and each believes only he/she knows the essence of their particular favorite Virginia blend. The thought of consensus is an insult. I do savor Virginia blends, but I'm a burley guy (and wouldn't understand those very special Virginia blends, being a gent of simple tastes).