From P&C's website: A blend of sweet Virginias is first pressed and then sliced into a flake. It's then tumbled into a ribbon, allowed to breathe and put back into the mold to be pressed again into a crumble cake. This darkens the leaf, gives it a deeper, richer flavor, and takes much of the "edge" off the blend. Finally, there's a Virginia tobacco that just about anyone can enjoy - John Cotton's Double Pressed Virginia.

John Cotton's Double Pressed Virginia was the winner of the 2019 Chicago Bowl.

BrandJohn Cotton
Blended ByRuss Ouellette
Manufactured BySutliff Tobacco Company
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
CutKrumble Kake
Packaging50 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy Cup O' Joes
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Mild to Medium
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (3004)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

The various Virginias offer some tart citrus and grass, a fair amount of wood and earth, hints of sugar, spice and sourness, and a little tangy dark fruit, along with a light floral, fermented quality. The double pressing eliminates any sharpness and rough edges, creating a mostly smooth, matured, rather mellow Virginia experience. The strength is in the center of mild to medium. The taste is a step past that center. The nic-hit is a couple of rungs past the mild mark. Won’t bite or get harsh even if you smoke like a freight train. This is an easily broken apart crumble kake designed to suit your packing preference. Burns very cool and clean at a slow pace. It’s mildly sweet with a slight savory note, and has a very consistent flavor from start to finish. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and does require a lot of relights. Has a pleasant, short lived after taste and room note. By design, it’s a fairly easy going all day smoke.


27 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (2071)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

John Cotton - John Cotton's Double Pressed Virginia.

The kake arrives as one piece, and sits on the precipice of being a plug. It doesn't require a knife or coffee grinder, but don't expect something as easy to rub as, say, Cornell and Diehl's Black Frigate. This requires a more pertinacious preparation! The smell from it isn't too sweet or ambrosial, but quite mellow. My hydration was good right away.

Make no mistake, the smoke's high quality. The flavour incorporates many Virginia nuances, but isn't just a tart, or grassy, smoke. The overriding taste is quite mild, and very laid back; don't expect a blast of zest! For the initial quarter I notice more of a hay-like note, which gets replaced by a fruity touch as the bowl burns. But, again, this fruity touch doesn't monopolize the flavour; it embellishes, without turning it too tangy or sweet. The burn's exemplary: slow, cool, no hassle with maintenance. And, it generates a bite-free smoke.

Nicotine: quite mild. Room-note: I like it.

Double Pressed Virginia? A steadfast four stars:

Highly recommended.

Pipe Used: Peterson Summertime XL02

Age When Smoked: 2 months

Purchased From: Cup O' Joes

10 people found this review helpful.

King Weed Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
King Weed (228)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I smoked this blend first before attempting the Doubled Pressed Kentucky and I'm glad I did. Double Pressed Virginia, despite it's appearance, is a milder blend than the former and I agree with the sentiments of reviewer Criblo 2019-05-29. Like he, I thought DPV's darker color would yield a stouter smoke; it didn't. The blend smokes rather soft and easy and fits right in at the top of the bell shaped curve for Virginias. This is a crowded place and a blend needs something to set it apart in this neighborhood. Double Pressed Virginia lacks that edge but, don't get me wrong, smokes on and on in a pleasant way until you discover you're at the bottom of the bowl. I don't have anything bad to say about it and would have no problem recommending it to any pipe smoker. Conversely, I can't elevate it to four star status. This is an all day smoke of high quality with the grassiness that you Virginia lovers crave and is an easy three stars.

Pipe Used: Kaywoodie Large Billiard - 2001 NASPC yearpipe

Age When Smoked: current

Purchased From: Pipes and Cigars

Similar Blends: I'm not a dedicated Virginia smoker but, in my memory, the many pressed and flaked straight Virginias I've seen over the years are not this dark in color..

9 people found this review helpful.

steppx Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
steppx (185)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Im a bit surprised that veteran reviewers here don't give this the deserved four stars. Its among the best pure virginias out there today. Since mcclelland closed its hard to find high quality pure viriginia. This is it.

That said, Russ Oullette and Sutliff are out of their minds asking this price for a tin. Its crazy and I personally won't pay it. Which makes me sad.

By the way, Sutliff makes a perfectly good..in fact very good...red virginia crumble cake for 30% less. Go there.

Purchased From: cup o joes

Similar Blends: Sutliff crumble cake pure virginia..

7 people found this review helpful.

Sasquatch Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Sasquatch (88)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

It's a funny old world. I opened my tin eagerly, was happy to be greeted by a little pressed cake. It smelled like virginia. I put some in my pipe, and it tastes.... like virginia. It's a little ashy and a little punchy, this is maybe an old-school offering, but I just don't like smoking this kind of thing much. Reminded me of the Fribourg Golden. Like a really heavy cigarette. That's fine if that's your bag. I prefer some nuance I guess.

5 people found this review helpful.

rattdogg99 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
rattdogg99 (49)
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I bought a few tins of this a while back just knowing I would love it. Cracked a fresh tin, fired it up and hated it. I placed the remaining tins in my old wooden ammo box and forgot about them. Thirteen months later I pulled one out and gave it another try. I love it! The fresh tin had a raw, green flavor. Kind of like some type of fruit that's not quite ripe and sour too boot. The aged tins have smoothed out and present a dark stewd fruit flavor with no rough edges and a hint of natural sweetness. Excellent with a hot black coffee! I highly recommend this to Virginia smokers but this has to have a bit of age on it to be at its best.

Pipe Used: Various

Age When Smoked: 13 months

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

3 people found this review helpful.

JaWiBr Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JaWiBr (300)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

Tin note of fermented vegetation, sugar, and spices. Tobacco is a yellowish brown and tan speckled Krumble Kake. The 1/2-inch thick Kake has a good moisture content, some may prefer to dry it. Kake breaks and rubs out easily. Burns slow with a few relights. The strength is mild to medium and nic is mild. No flavoring detected. Taste is medium and very consistent, with notes of leather, spices, wood, sweet grass, floral, bread, earth, tangy citrus, sugar, citrus peel, fermented vegetation, mildly spicy/acidic, mild sour lemon, a ripe dark fruity background note, and a moderately peppery retro. Room note is pleasant, and aftertaste is great.

Pipe Used: Peterson Bard Rusticated 221 Fishtail

Age When Smoked: 2 years

2 people found this review helpful.

Stah Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stah (133)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

After trying John Cotton's Double Pressed Kentucky, I didn't expect any special miracles from this series. But I had a tin of John Cotton's Double Pressed Virginia in store, especially since this tobacco was also highly regarded by the pipe-smoking community as a winner at the 2019 Chicago show.

Vacuum sealed, can, circa September 2021. The color of the tobacco is medium roast coffee, monochromatic, with no flecks or streaks. Shape and cut - the tobacco has been pressed, flake cut, broken and pressed again into a " crumble cake". This makes it seem like there is less tobacco in the tin than there really is. The consistency is slightly different from Double Pressed Kentucky - the tobacco is a little wetter. It breaks off, crumbles and puffs extremely easily.

The aroma of the tobacco from the tin is the truest pure Virginia. Mild smell of hay, some wheat bread, a little salt and dried fish. No sauces, additives, extraneous smells. There are no harsh flavors, and the tobacco seems older than it really is.

Since Virginia has to be smoked slowly, and the strength, even considering the preparation method, is unlikely to exceed medium, I took a large but fairly narrow pipe and stuffed it completely. The flavor of this blend initially gave no reason to think - indeed, a hay herb, moderately sweet, flavored with a little bread. What was nice was that the tobacco was surprisingly soft and had no roughness at all, as if the Virginia had been in the tin for ten years. Gradually a fruity note came through, the tobacco got some fullness of flavor, it had a fruity note, added sweetness, but it was still a plain Virginia. I wrote down notes, did my work and did not notice how the pipe ran out, but when I glanced at my watch, I saw that almost an hour had passed. During that time I did not use my lighter even once - the tobacco smoked smoothly and burned almost completely, turning into a dusty, whitish ash. But when I took the pipe apart a lot of water poured out and I was glad I took the Peterson System pipe for the test - its chamber had accumulated condensate, which I poured out. In the bowl itself, however, there was no moisture. Based on the fact that I did not notice how I smoked the pipe, I guess that the strength of the tobacco is below average. The aftertaste is mild, sweetish-fruity, without any nuances.

The smoke from the tobacco is light, sweet, easy to disperse, no discomfort in the room.

What's the result? Perhaps I was expecting too much from a simple Virginia. It's a very good, quality tobacco, smooth and simple in flavor. I have three more tins I bought as a reserve, and if I wanted the simple taste of good Virginia, I wouldn't hesitate to take one of them. It doesn't need to be aged, it's ready to please you as soon as you open the tin. Maybe it will have some collector's value someday - we don't know how long it will be available.

Pipe Used: Peterson System B42

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: Online

2 people found this review helpful.

LiterarySmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
LiterarySmoker (142)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

I have to say as tins get more and more ugly beurocratic labels on them it really detracts from good tin art. These John Cotton blends come in really nice tins. I'm really new to straight Virginia's, and I think Capstan Blue is the only one I've had so far of the genre. I have to say that as I've smoked this, this week it gives me a really nice impression.

When I opened my tin for the first time I saw two very nicely pressed cakes of Virginia tobacco. Rubbing these cakes out is a very satisfying experience, they don't fall apart like some of the C&D cakes do. The rubbed out cake actually looks like a rubbed out flake due to the double pressing. The tin note on this one is fermented hay which is oddly a little dark fruit like, with a little citrus. It loads very easily and I don't really have a hard time getting it lit. I find it has a slow burn, and may need a few more than average relights. The smell is sweet and very pleasant.

Let's get down to taste. I'm going to assume the Virginia in this is Red Virginia. It's not the citrusy sweet I got from the majority of the Capstan. I taste a lot of dark fruit, but because of the fermentation it is really well rounded and mellow. There is some hay and citrus in the background. There is a lot of volume to the smoke and it comes in nice white clouds. It's hard to get this one hot, you really need to try and push it. If this is what I can look forward to in trying new Virginia's I am definitely going to pick a few more up. The taste in this blend is a medium, and the strength is medium with just a hair to the mild side.

This blend just goes to show that simplicity sometimes wins the day. I would happily buy a couple more tins of this and put them in the cellar. This is a strong win for me.

Pipe Used: Kaywoodie Birkshire Large Billiard

Age When Smoked: New

2 people found this review helpful.

James C. Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
James C. (17)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

This blend strikes me as complex and smooth providing the full spectrum of Virginia flavors in fairly composed balance with the lemony citrus and spice being the most prevalent character. Smooth with a nice spice, good body, and some oomph. Builds as you smoke it down the bowl but the flavors remain consistent. Burns easy and clean to a white ash. Quite delicious for the experienced Virginia smoker.

Pipe Used: Chacom Reverse Calabash

Age When Smoked: ~1yr

Similar Blends: Wessex Gold Slice. Capstan Gold. Union Square.

2 people found this review helpful.

Big Train Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Big Train (118)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

This is a medium virginia presented in crumble cake form . Very earthy from the start , the tin note and the taste . Not the sweet and smooth virginia taste you might get from . say . Vauen #14 or F & T Cut Virginia . More like the deeper taste one might get from Samuel Gawith Full Virginia Flake . The crumble cake is a little complicated to work with . One may rub it to a cube cut or sort of nudge it into a broken flake . I prefer the latter , either way the burn is sort of uneven . The taste is just a tad over medium and it burns cleanly down to the bottom . The Virginias used here are not top quality but good enough by today's standards . Not a great idea for the early morning pipe but best enjoyed later in the day . The double pressed process should make it more mellow and smooth and I think that quality was present here .

2 people found this review helpful.

McQueen Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
McQueen (41)
Strong Mild to Medium Overwhelming Strong

Zesty, sour, vinegar that’s in your face. If you like Sutliffs Cringle Flake, grab this , as it’s very similar. It has that signature bold bold vinegar tart zest that’s present in all of sutliffs Virginias. It’s one big rough edge, not soft or easy like say, HH Pure Virginia for example. After three bowls of trying to like this, I cannot recommend it.

Pipe Used: Cone, pot, cylinder

Age When Smoked: 3 years

Similar Blends: Cringle flake.

1 person found this review helpful.

NEWMAN Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
NEWMAN (304)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Although it appears as a plug when the tin is popped, it beaks up easily for packing and has an ideal moisture content; smokes smoothly without relights or condensation; no bite from start to finish

Pipe Used: Estella billiard; Montbatten bent billiard

Age When Smoked: unknown

Purchased From: pipes & cigars.com

1 person found this review helpful.