As far as Red's go I have never experienced a Flake comparable to McCranies Red Ribbon but then again I have never had McCraines Red Flake soooooooo? Any Great Red Flakes out there? Lemme know I still prefer Peterson flake and Bold Kentucky to other forms of comparable leafGenerally accepted? No. But, to this plebeian's taste, pre-2014 Wessex Classic Virginia (not to be confused with Wessex "Original," etc.) was as good as or better than any VA flake in existence. Around 2014 it changed from a straight red VA ribbon to a (very poor) lemon VaPer ribbon (so don't get excited by any tins you find for sale -- they're imposters).
Then again, I don't think that it was a ribbon in every respect -- I think that it began life as a plug, then was sliced and "ready rubbed" for sale. So, even here, time as a plug probably contributed to excellence.
Accumulated experience suggests that Virginia doesn't reach the fullness of its telos apart from time fermenting and marrying in plug form.
This may have begun as a mere practicality, but the mere practicality led to a discovery, and that discovery is confirmed by consensus on TR.