Full bodied, flavorful Cyprian latakia and Kentucky tobaccos were combined with black cavendish and then pressed to flake.

BrandRobert McConnell
Blended ByKohlhase, Kopp und Co. KG
Blend TypeEnglish
ContentsBlack Cavendish, Kentucky, Latakia
Packaging50 grams tin
ProductionCurrently available
Where to Buy TobaccoPipes.com
Product Image
Medium to Strong
None Detected
Medium to Full
Room Note
Pleasant, Pleasant to Tolerable

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Gentleman Zombie Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gentleman Zombie (729)
Medium to Strong Mild Full Tolerable

Unique is the best way to describe this flake. Nice floral, almost perfume-like, notes. Latakia nicely balanced with the Kentucky giving deep flavors of smoke, wood and earth. There is an underlying sweetness that I assume is coming from the cased Black Cav. That's probably where the floral notes are coming from as well. The flavors are strong and rich, the smoke medium to full bodied. An outstanding, very well put together smoke. Simply delicious.

Pipe Used: MM Freehand, MM General

Age When Smoked: 2 months

Purchased From: pipesandcigars.com

23 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1829)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

One of the strongest Latakia blends I've tried. Nicotine addicts with a penchant for Latakia will eat this one up.

The flakes are mostly dry yet pliable and jet black in appearance. A moderate to full rub worked best for me. I particularly enjoyed the smoothness mixed in with the strength. Tough to compare, but were I to take a stab at it, I'd say McConnell's Latakia Flake is very similar to the old Smoker's Haven Pirate Kake with a little more muscle.

23 people found this review helpful.

JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (3019)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Full Tolerable to Strong

The smoky, woody, earthy, musty, lightly dry wine-like sweet Syrian Latakia takes a very small lead here. The very floral, woody, earthy, moderately spicy and sour, dry, toasty, nutty Kentucky has a very strong presence in the mix. The sugary black cavendish doesn’t do much to tame the rough edges, and is a background player. There’s a floral, almost Lakeland-like topping of some kind that tones down the tobaccos a bit, but not enough to keep the varietals from talking to your taste buds. The strength is in the middle of the medium to strong level. The taste is full. The nic-hit is a step past the medium mark. Won’t bite, but it does sport a few harsh notes. Burns fairly cool and a little slow with a mostly consistent, mildly sweet, rather savory and lightly bitter campfire flavor from top to bottom. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and requires some relights. I found the lingering after taste to be a little unattractive. Not an all day smoke.


14 people found this review helpful.

the_german Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
the_german (309)
Medium to Strong Medium Full Very Pleasant

How could I resist anything called something like "Latakia Flake?" So of course I got myself a tin as soon as I could lay hands on one.

I checked out KK&Co's web site before opening the tin; they claim this blend is not flavoured. Opening the tin, it turns out that it is; there is a very distinct sauce applied here; similar to the classic Lakeland Floral, but kept in check by the BC included here. The slices, as has been said before, crumble at so much as a sharp look. The Latakia is there, but very gently, and I can also make out the KY.

I get my best results with this blend after fully rubbing out enough for a pipe; no drying time necessary for me. The taste is pretty sweet, with toast and oomph provided by the Lat and KY components; the BC provides lots of sweetness and variety. The room note is a somewhat mixed affair, but is certainly helped by the sauce, which also gives the smoke a fresh taste and aftertaste, the latter of which lingers on for a while.

I find I do have to re-light a few times, but in the end there is nothing but ashes in my bowl, so that is OK for me. The taste deepens a little throughout the smoke; the sauce stays on right until the end, and while manufacturer Kohlhase, Kopp & Co. rate this as a very strong 'baccy, it is in my experience nowhere near, say, Peterson's Irish Flake, which they rate at the same strength.

All in all, I find Latakia Flake a satisfying smoke in the afternoon; it will never be an all-day affair for me though. My favourite tipple to go along with this blend is a good Irish Single Malt.

Pipe Used: Stanwell Zebrano

Age When Smoked: Fresh from new tin

Purchased From: HoS, Lingen, Germany

12 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Strong None Detected Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Robert McConnell's Latakia flake is like nothing I have smoked before. This is for the unconditional Latakia lover and novices should stay away from it.

The long, dark and thick flakes are easy to break to someone's favorite level of rubbing out. I would advise against putting full flakes in the pipe: I think that the taste and strength would be simply overwhelming.

In order to get the best out of the taste, it is preferable to smoke slowly. If not, you will only taste the nicotine. And it would be a shame, because this flake provides a fine balance between spicines, sweetness and smokiness. And something else that I cannot identify. The tobacco stays lit without any problem despite the darkness of the flake.

The last third of the bowl represents a significant increase in strength, taste and nicotine level. Surprisingly, my wife did not complain of my smoking it in the house because the room aroma is very discreet the first 2/3. Still, it remains tolerable the last third.

This is a very dry smoke. My pipe cleaners were not all dark as I proceeded. Only at the end, when I cleaned up the bowl.

I highly recommend this flake. I will rebuy more on a regular basis. I am under the impression that McConnel's flake is a 100 years old mixture that traveled through time to end up in my pipe. A true taste of the past.

11 people found this review helpful.

StevieB Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
StevieB (2075)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Very Full Strong

Robert McConnell - Latakia Flake.

The flakes looked as though they were beginning to break when I opened it, and they're quite fragile; because they've stuck together they need peeling apart, this causes them to crumble imminently. My tin was only a little too moist, nothing to get in a stress about. The flakes are jet black in colour.

The fiery Kentucky goes hand in hand with the smoky Latakia, forming the leading taste, hence the eponymous name! But, to my palate this flavour doesn't completely dominate the profile: although the Lat/Kent are easily the most formidable of the group, the black Cavendish softens and sweetens it, and also gives a vanilla-esc thickness. I get no tongue bite and the burn from L.F. couldn't be any better: steady, cool, fairly slow, leaving a clean white ash.

The nicotine's above medium, and the room-note's heavy.

Latakia Flake? I'll happily highly recommend it!

Four stars.

Pipe Used: Altinok Friday Pipe

Age When Smoked: Four months

Purchased From: Smokingpipes.com

8 people found this review helpful.

Ducksbreath Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Ducksbreath (125)
Medium to Strong Medium Full Tolerable

The casing on this tobacco is the same as on Revor Plug. For those who aren't familiar with that tobacco, it is a dark, strong VA/B plug available only in the UK. The casing also resembles that used in Bracken Flake. Here the casing is not that prominent but plays in the background.

The strength of this tobacco is also approaching that of Revor Plug and other dark, scented British flakes (but again the scenting here is not as profound as in most Lakelands). What is interesting is that this contains Syrian Latakia in no small amount and it isn't a Lakeland.

So what do we have ? A strong, dark almost black (crumbly but not a crumble-kake) flake with a Lakeland like topping and a generous amount of Syrian Latakia.

What this is NOT is a typical English blend, in the sense that people who enjoy, say, medium English blends with Oriental tobaccos and red Virginias will like. It is somewhat similar to the another (rum) scented Latakia flake (whose name escapes me at the moment, maybe something by S. Gawith) which I've had, but this product has more strength (vit N).

The Latakia makes itself known in the wine-like, smoky way which Syrian Latakia works, but the Latakia takes a back seat to the Kentucky and I suppose also the black Cavendish (which must be VA Cavendish) which provide a good amount of power. Not as much as GH dark flake, or 1792, but very significant vit. N content.

Although I haven't tried it, I doubt this likes a large bowled pipe. The flakes are very dense and crumbly and it would be difficult to fill and smoke a big bowl (also it would be foolhardy).

Full of old-fashioned full bodied goodness, only those who like the dark, strong stuff should try this. Beginners, Latakiaphobes and nico-weenies stay far away.

8 people found this review helpful.

Virginia lover Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Virginia lover (218)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Tolerable to Strong

Upon opening the tin, I get the same smell as Irish Flake but with some Latakia. The meaty flakes are dark, almost black, with some sugar deposits. Lighting the flake without drying is difficult and requires several relights for the entire bowl.

The Kentucky and Latakia produce a lot of smoke and the taste is accordingly stronger than it is flavorful.I get Kentucky and also a burnt onion taste that reminds me of Samuel Gawith Black XX Twist. There is no sweetness just some toasty undertones, as for Latakia, it gets swallowed by the Kentucky.

Overall a tobacco for experienced pipe smokers, an evening or after dinner smoke. I have to say that the name is a misnomer as I was expecting a Latakia flake bomb and I got a Kentucky flake instead.

Not bad on its own merits but I start to think that the Robert McConnnell tobaccos are only pale attempts to attain a former glory.

Virginia lover

6 people found this review helpful.

hawky454 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hawky454 (107)
Strong Mild Full Pleasant

The name of this blend is confusing as it hardly tastes of Latakia at all, it tastes like a very old school British Flake. I find that it is extremely similar to GH&Co’s Revor Plug and both have a wonderful mysterious, subtle top dressing that I really can’t put my finger on but it’s magical. This is strong in nicotine but the smoke is so smooth and tasty it might sneak up on you. I prefer to smoke it in the cooler months and around October of every year I’ve come to get very excited to bring this one back in my rotation. The flakes come at the optimal moisture level, they are ready to crumble up and load in the pipe right when you pop the tin. I prefer to smoke this in a smaller chamber, something like a squat bulldog is perfect, in larger bowls this stuff can get a tad bitter the further you get down the bowl. This is an absolutely hidden gem within the McConnell line up and by far my favorite. This provides an amazing smoking experience in every level. Also worthy to note, this and Sillem’s Commodore Flake taste identical.

Edit* 1-18-19 I’ve just recently cracked open a round tin and that perfume flavor that I loved so much is entirely missing from these flakes, I really hope this is just an anomaly but the flakes look different to me as well and the Latakia is much more noticeable than before. It’s still a damn fine blend but it makes me happy that I have plenty of the square tins stocked up in my cellar.


Pipe Used: Rattray's Bull & Dogs, Stanwell.

Age When Smoked: Fresh

Purchased From: smokingpipes.com

Similar Blends: REVOR PLUG!! Commodore Flake.

5 people found this review helpful.

pipesofpeace Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
pipesofpeace (9)
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Tolerable

This is a classy, fantastic and completely different blend and can't compare to any other latakia/ oriental/english blend i have tried before. LF is a dark flake with intense aroma and a light floral scent to it, but not overwhelming at all.

These flakes come to be smoked right out of the tin. You can fold it and pack or rub out easily. It takes a while to get lit but once it takes the fire keeps going easily and with a few relights. The flavor is just fantastic, and as i said before, nothing to compare with. Smoky and woodsy, but sweet and floral at the same time, makes this baccy and awesome Smoke that is, IMO, not and all-day tobacco. I would recommend it as you last Smoke of the day and away of The wife. Very satisfiying, complex and uníque tobacco. Highly recommended!!

Pipe Used: MM Country Gentleman, Savinelli Standing 413,

Age When Smoked: 3 months

Purchased From: Sybarite Pipes, Barcelona, Spain

Similar Blends: No one i've tried before!.

5 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Extra Strong

This is a strange one. Dark black flakes that crumble almost from a soft breath and a tin aroma that is not enticing. The crumble makes for an easy load and it burned perfectly.

The taste was odd. I'm guessing the latakia was of the Syrian variety, as it was more sour and wine-like in taste. Too sweet as well, possibly from an overabundance of cavendish (to my palate) or perhaps a casing gone awry. Whatever it was, it managed to beat the Kentucky down more than I could ever imagine. The nicotine was abusive and I had to smoke this in smaller bowls than I prefer. The whole concoction just tasted bizarre - a mixture of too sweet and almost soil-like. I only smoked about half the tin as it was, and mixed the rest with Cyprian latakia, while rubbing out the rest of the tin to make it consistent in cut. Only in this manner did it approach something I enjoyed. Where this one gets high marks is for originality. I've never smoked anything quite like it. If you enjoy a lot of nicotine and a sweetness that is enmeshed with the earthiness of Kentucky leaf, this is definitely one to take for a spin.

5 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

Latakia and Stoved Virginias in one flake. These combinations don't come around often.

A flake version of Commonwealth Mixture, if you will.

This, mates, is what I call a flake. Despite being very dark, they break to one's requirements extremely well and they smoke amazingly well.

Of course it can be somehow undimensional, there are two types of tobaccos involved. No different than...an all Burley flake, for example. But it is still very rewarding if smoked appropriately(slowly). This is still a rich and tasty mixture that smokes extraordianrely dry considering the dark, almost black flakes!

This flake is for Latakia's most fervent and loyal fans. I shall store my remaining tins in my Coleman Cooler and allow them to age for a couple years. That is, if I can resist until then...

5 people found this review helpful.

adam543 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
adam543 (8)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant

When I first tried this blend I was quite disappointed. Upon opening the tin, flakes were very wet and they needed a lot of drying time. Flavor? NO Latakia flavor at all. Either my tin has wrongly packed tobacco or the name is very misleading. From this point of view it should get one star as it is NOT Latakia flake.

What is it then? It is a very nice Black Cavendish/Kentucky blend. First half of the bowl is sweet from Black Cavendish with occasional floral notes. The second half of the bowl is less sweet with very nice Kentucky/Burley flavor. It smokes smooth and it leaves nice aftertaste. Maybe it isn't every day smoke but if you need something more robust, this one is for you. Because the quality of the blend is much more important than it's name, finally I give it four stars.

Age When Smoked: 6 months

4 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Tolerable

This is the best Latakia flake I have ever had. And also the most intriguing tin aroma I have ever encountered in my pipe smoking years!

Dark, dark and dark flakes. Easy to rub to someone's liking and despite a little bit too much of moisture at first, smokes extremely well.

In order to get full pleasure of this amazing flake, it is recommended to dedicate your full attention to it so that the stoved VAs can shine through the dominant Latakia taste. When dedicating oneself, the reward is...rewarding!

Despite the high amount of Latakia, this tobacco ir room aroma friendly. I have offended nor incommodated anyone when smoking this flake at home among guests.

This, gentleman, is a man's flake. Lighter than Peterson Irish super flake, for strength's comparison. And substantially stronger than Balkan Flake from Samuel Gawith.

Latakia lovers, trying this outstanding creation of McConnel's is mandatory. I belive you will not be disappointed.

4 people found this review helpful.

Horia Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Horia (5)
Medium None Detected Full Pleasant

A tobacco like heavy deep dark petroleum. Listening to bob dylan’s “Oh mercy “ album and a beer : perfect. If you’re wondering how you got to this point, survived and enjoyed the pain and the fury of it, this tobacco might just be the answer. Somewhat hard to get in Romania. The tin I got was somewhat hard to keep lit. Benefitted from matches. Definitely strong , hammer, on nicotine.

Pipe Used: Savinelli

3 people found this review helpful.

BingCrosby Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BingCrosby (161)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I love Robert Mcconnell's Kentucky flake! I mean latakia flake.. Hard to distinguish between the two components throughout the smoke.. When I first light it up it is that wonderful robust Kentucky rich flavor.. as the smoke progresses now and then you get a nice subtle latakia aftertaste.. This is all supported nicely by a Virginia cavendish and some kind of old school perfume.. Sounds strange! But the effect is very satisfying and it seems to be one of the better kept secrets in the pipe tobacco world.. if you enjoy lakelands or even Peterson's Irish flake i have a feeling this might be your sort of blend.. It has plenty of strength.. but it is very smooth and not at all like any other 'latakia' blend i have tried.. the perfume flavoring that is applied is much more gentle in the smoke than it is in the tin note..very tasty stuff.. not something I would gravitate towards on a regular basis.. It is more of something I would smoke when I want a departure from my daily blends.. torn between 3 and 4 stars.. I will settle on 3 since it isn't something I need to have often.. another great Mcconnell blend.. haven't tried a bad one yet from Bob Mcconnell

3 people found this review helpful.

PipeDragon Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
PipeDragon (42)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium Pleasant

While I may like smoking a mild and balanced English blend, sometimes I desire to smoke a Latakia heavy blend and, from my part, it's pretty difficult to resist the temptation of something called Latakia Flake. But, more than that, I was intrigued by the ingredients in this blend: Latakia, Kentucky and Black Cavendish. No Virginia and no Orientals. Very peculiar. This is actually the first blend I've smoked that doesn't have any Virginia

The tobacco presents itself in thin, nicely and evenly cut flakes that are almost jet black, with some brown strips coming from the Kentucky. The tobacco is more on the dry side, so it's pretty much smokeable right out of the tin. However, because of the moisture level, the flakes are quite frail and they break easily. Personally, that's not a problem for me as I like to rub the flakes out, but keep that in mind if you like the fold and stuff method. The tin note is pretty much expected from a Latakia heavy blend: dark, very smoky with a nice incense-y smell and something like an aromatic, exotic wood, but the overall smell is not overpowering.

Mechanically, this one behaves nicely. The flakes are easy to rub out, it's pretty easy to fill the pipe, may take some doing in lighting it and getting it under control, but it's all straight from there. Burns nicely, dry, cool, doesn't bite and doesn't require many relights.

On the flavor side, this is pretty straightforward and also different. You mostly taste the Latakia and that comes with the classic smokey, incense-y, campfire-like taste, buy pretty tempered and well-behaved. For a blend that contains so much Latakia, it's not overwhelming. The Kentucky works in the background to accentuate the smokey character and also lends a bit of nutty taste to the overall flavor. But there's also quite a bit of sweetness to this blend coming from the BC and it's a pretty welcomed one. It's not an aromatic type of sweetness, but one that balances the taste. I imagine that without the BC, considering there are no Virginias to lend their natural sweetness, this blend would be pretty heavy, especially as you move further down the bowl and it gets a bit stronger. Also, the room note is pretty nice and pleasant for a Latakia forward blend.

Overall, if you like heavy Latakia blends, then Latakia Flake is highly recommended. Robert McConnell makes very good blends, and this one is no exception. There's a nice amount of smokiness and sweetness in this blend to suit all tastes and, for me at least, they are not working one against the other, but in unison. As a Latakia lover, this one will be a welcomed, permanent addition to my collection and an excellent choice when I want to smoke a Latakia heavy blend.

UPDATE (March 2020)

After smoking multiple bowls of this one across an entire year, I have to say that my opinion of it has changed. In the first half of the bowl, the Latakia is indeed the main player and it's pretty pleasant, although a bit too sweet, even for my taste. I like sweet blends, but I believe that Latakia should not be further sweetened, as I kinda find it somewhat sweet in its natural form. Once halfway down, the Latakia becomes quieter and starts to compete with the Kentucky. And to me, that's the problem I have with this blend. Neither the Latakia, nor the Kentucky can decide which one wants to be the main player, and so the smoke becomes somewhat monotonous. Maybe Latakia and Kentucky just don't go well together (for me, at least). Also, after puzzling a bit on the taste, I can definitely say that there's a slight topping applied to this one, reminiscent of rum. It's not strong, but it's definitely there and I'm kinda surprised that I didn't notice it before.

As such, I'll have to downgrade it to 2 stars. At first, I thought it was great. Now, after multiple smokes, not so much. I have to give it credit for being different than other Latakia blends as far as the component tobaccos are concerned but, sadly, that's not enough to impress me anymore. It's kinda sad, as I really liked this one in the beginning, but I guess it's all part of the evolution in each one's pipe smoking journey.

Pipe Used: Savinelli Capitol

Age When Smoked: Fresh from the tin

Purchased From: Tobacco store

3 people found this review helpful.

Gaius Baltar Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Gaius Baltar (25)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Full Pleasant

When you open the tin you see a jet black flake with a smell of wet clay, smoke and a subtle smell that reminds me of lavender. A little wet that requires about 15 minutes of drying. Once you start smoking, it does not require extra lighting. The flavor is the same as the tin, a deep and earthy smoke with that touch of lavender that lasts until the end. I have used a "HOT GRILL" on the pipe that creates an expansion chamber and improves the release of flavors. Finish with a fine white ash. It is a highly recommended flake.

Pipe Used: Rotation briar

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Tobacco shop from Barcelona

3 people found this review helpful.

crazy owl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
crazy owl (74)
Strong Medium Medium to Full Strong

I don´t see any mistery in this blend.It´s just burley flake,as Peterson Irish Flake,and cyprian Latakia.Also I feel the same casing of Irish Flake,or perhaps is the natural scent of well matured burley.I wouldn´t bet my head in it.For me is a curiosity,not cheap by the way,it´s not an absolute waste but I won´t repeat.Very high moist,crumbling to small portions when rubbed.Not a disgusting smoke on the beach in a cob,but no more indeed.I rate 1 star,not recommended,because the casing and the price.

Pipe Used: cobs

Age When Smoked: fresh

Purchased From: local tobacconist in Spain

Similar Blends: Peterson Irish Flake with Lat..

3 people found this review helpful.

CharatansMake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
CharatansMake (18)
Medium to Strong Very Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

I think this is a surprising, interesting and quite unique Latakia tobacco.

Before I got in touch with Perique I loved Latakia and now for a few years I tend to smoke Latakia just from time to time. The thrill is somewhat over and Perique is my new queen!

But this Latakia flake is quite different. Latakia is not the chief here, just a attendant that supports and enriches the nice and well balanced floral taste. For sure it is not a real/full aromatic but a natural tobacco with a delicate floral note and a decent smokiness. It has some creaminess, a satisfying nic content and a nice strength.

Try it!

3.5 stars!

Pipe Used: Charatan Special 4651x

Age When Smoked: fresh

3 people found this review helpful.

jankoez Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
jankoez (69)
Strong None Detected Medium Tolerable

It comes in an elegant tin and flakes are in good condition which allow fine crumbling. Strong as a hammer, however quite tasteless and it smells strange. When it dried, it was a little bit better. Usually I prefer Latakia but not this one... its flat and soapy taste drives me crazy.

My rate: 0.5

3 people found this review helpful.

butter_side_down Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
butter_side_down (12)
Strong Mild to Medium Full Tolerable

This tastes to me almost exactly like Peterson's Irish Flake, but with a healthy dose of Latakia added. In theory, I should like this blend. I enjoy Irish Flake. I enjoy Latakia. But, apparently, I don't enjoy them together. I did not find the flavors to be complimentary here. Instead, they seemed to wrestle for dominance with neither ever really getting the upper hand. I can see how this could appeal to someone, but it just isn't for me.

3 people found this review helpful.

Old German puffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Old German puffer (106)
Strong Strong Very Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Another of my favorites. I smoke this on weekends and nights that I go out. It is a semi strong tobacco that just seems to hit the spot. Great to rub and drop into the bowl. Lights very quickly and burns like a hot coal. Seldom have to relight. Tamper well, smoke slow and this will take care of you to the end. This was a Hugh hit in my pipe club.

Update: May 1, 2022 Opened up a jar of this am and packed my trusty Tinder Box Verona. The smell was outstanding! Lit very quickly and hit the taste buds with strong satisfaction. The flavor seems to get so much stronger with age and it burns a little hotter as well so pacing is key here. About half way through the bowl I felt it give a little buzz as well. Loved it. Still is one of my favorites in my cellar.

Pipe Used: Dunhill, Peterson, Savinelli, Comoy

Age When Smoked: bulk in jars 10 to 12 years.

Purchased From: Mannheim Germany

2 people found this review helpful.

plugnsmoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
plugnsmoke (6)
Medium to Strong Extremely Mild Medium to Full Strong

This tin was beautiful outside and in. When opened your greated with a nice gold foil seal and pencil like sketch of a leaf. The tin note wasof Latakia but the dark fire really cuts through and in the bowl was a great treat on the pallet. I left it out over night and it dried more than I would have liked and thought I had ruined it. This wasn't the case as it burned and lit extremely well. I really expected a stronger nic hit from the df, especially towards the bottom but it wasn't there. I'd say its satisfying for most but I look for that green feeling when I'm dealing with a dark fire Kentucky. It was nice to try and the tin is beautiful but I won't reorder so the hunt for the lat flake of a lifetime continues. Paul

Pipe Used: olive blowfish

Age When Smoked: 2yrs

Purchased From: local shop

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Strong Medium Medium Tolerable to Strong

McConnell's Latakia Flake is a strange beast: Not what I expected on purchase, and somehow oddly co-mingling detest and love, hate and joy. It is pleasant, but has enough problems to be worth noting. I always keep some around, which i dip into when I want something with a lot of punch, but not too overwhelming on the palate.

Opening the tin reveals a selection of unusual, crumbly flakes,, that are similar in texture to Penzance, although they are long-cut, rather than square-cut. They tend to stick together heavily, making it difficult to separate at first, and need drying time. The main objection here is that they act more like crumble-cake than flake, and I am no fan of the former

The fragments are jet-black in colour, with duller and shinier areas, and seem to be composed primarily of stoved VA (possibly Black Cavendish, but I believe it to be mostly the former), mixed with Syrian leaf and some other dark components that never really come alive. The taste is nearly mono-dimensional, with a bit of sweetness, a but of spice, and a somewhat licorice-like complexion.

To be honest, the only change as you smoke is an ashy dulling, so smaller bowls are best. A clay is useful to a certain extent, but doesn't change much. The initial burn is usually problematic, and relighting seems mandatory, often many times. You may want to try it initially in a pipe that you don't love, in case the flavour doesn't appeal to you. The combination if latakia (English-y) and Stoved VA / Cavendish (aromatic-ish) tobaccos means that you may find any dedicated pipe will take up a bit of the other side in its seasoning.

The flakes are very thick, somewhat dry (although sticky) and crumble into chunks as soon as you try to do anything with them. Once you do have them lit, they do burn cool and slow, with no bite. Eventually you learn that there is no proper way to fill a bowl, and just shove it in any way that you can, and do what you may to keep it burning. Honestly, it almost seems as if it has a mind of its own and struggles to stay alive, shunning the flames.

You will want to keep a few extra packs of marches on hand for this. If you use a clay, at the least, the burn may improve from the radiant heat, and you may find it easier to keep this one going.

All-in-all, this is one blend you will have to judge for yourself, on its own merits and flaws. Honestly, I wish that this was no more than McConnell' Latakia in flake form, but alas, 'tisn't. I usually go for it when i want something different that has enough body to be pleasing and enough Nicotine to keep me awake, or relax me to bed; the only problem is that for a nighttime blend, it is too difficult to keep burning, and I often end up staying awake just relighting it, so a tiny bowl is useful if you want it for this reason.

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Strong Mild Medium Very Strong

A very beautiful tin. My friend “Ritsa” got it for me from Frankfurt. I opened it, even though I DIDN'T HANE a second one. At first I thought that this was a blend with more than 90% Latakia, which I should mix it up with some other tobacco. The flakes are nice and tidy. Their color was black, pitch black color I would say and were I quite wet. Filling the bowl and lighting it up was a bit difficult. The first impression, as well as the second, the third, is that it has a subtle fragrance. Not vanilla, chocolate or cherry but something else unspecified. It is heavy on nicotine. The taste of Latakia is not so noticeable, and it is not to nice too. It also contains stoved Virginia.

The room scent is….tra-gi-c. Maybe if it was mixed with some Oriental blend that would add some more sweetness, I would like it more

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

update 12/26/2010

I recently opened up a 2 1/2 tin. Wow! The Dark Fired Kentucky brought an amazing spicy bold addition to this flake, making it a must for anyone who seeks a good Latakia based blend!

Nice, strong and tasty!!! ___________________________________

Original Review 07/25/2010

This flake is probably the most original mixture I had the pleasure to smoke.

Because of the high content of Latakia, this can come out as being an unidimensional, almost kind of bland smoke.

The secret to enjoy it is no different than an all Burley blend. It needs to be smoked slow and it requires your full dedication.

If you don't do these, you will miss one of the most interesting tobaccos on the market today.

Of note, the tin aroma is the strangest ever. Don't let it stop you.

This flake should not be an all day smoke. I smoke a tin a year, not more. And appreciate it every time.

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant

Allow me to start by saying that I love Latakia. However, this tobacco is too one-dimensional for me--it lacks complexity and depths. If you want a nice punch of nicotine, you will find it here.

Warning: Make sure that children can't get hold of this tobacco: It smells and looks like some very dark chocolate when you open the tin.

2 people found this review helpful.

puro66 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
puro66 (73)
Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

Latakia Flakes are not exactly common, so I was quite excited when this one appeared on the market. In fact I bought a tin the second it appeared on my favorite purveyor's website. It is most certainly of high quality with a beautiful jet black appearance and inviting tin aroma. The nicotine level in this is a bit high so proceed with caution. You must definitely smoke it slowly.

Overall I found it somewhat one dimensional but worth trying. I probably will not buy it again, but I still have some left and will revisit it.

UPDATE: 2-4-14: I realized I never updated my thoughts on this blend. It proved to be overwhelmeing in nicotine and just not pleasant. I have removed a star.

2 people found this review helpful.

Stan Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Stan (178)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

A full flake composed of stoved bright (I imagine because of zest) Virginias and Latakia. Best fully rubbed

No detailed description given but I suspect this is a species of Syrian, as it is potent but not as smoky as Cyprian.

Cool and smooth but with a nico hit. Overall on the strong side due to the dark flavor.

Fairly unique due to the slight zesty to leathery flavor curve, but mostly uniform taste.

Not as complex as Germain's but still full enough.

2 people found this review helpful.

FilipPruncu Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
FilipPruncu (84)
Medium Mild Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

The name of the blend is misleading. I’ve been warned by pipe friends that this has very little latakia and has some casing/topping, but then I’ve read some of the reviews here, where people used to say it’s a latakia forward blend. In my case at least, this is not the case, not in my tin. Maybe it depends on the origin, if it’s a US tin or a EU tin.

I’ll start with the tin note and say that... well, it doesn’t smell like tobacco at all, it has like a soapy, gum-like smell. Notes are sweet with fruit/dried fruit, dried plum.

The tobacco is black (obviously) and quite moist, will take a while to dry.

Taste? The cavendish and the kentucky are the stars, the latakia is only a bit in the background and you can detect it only if you light up the pipe, get some smoke out of it and then leave it for about an hour or two with the tobacco in the bowl. So the order of the tobaccos would be (from my experience) black cavendish, kentucky, latakia, and then there’s a bit of a casing/topping, but still tastes like tobacco.

Sweet and sugary from the black cavendish, peppery and nutty from the kentucky, and only a bit smoky, the latakia being the least felt in this blend. Has a little flavoring of dried plums, but it does taste like tobacco, like I said above.

You can really detect the kentucky in this baby. I’m a smoker of Turner Dark rolling tobacco, which has dark fired kentucky and I can tell from a mile that this tin contains a good amount of kentucky.

Delivers a thick smoke, burns very good, evenly, leaving a white ash with no dottle. Even if it doesn’t deliver hot smoke, it does tend to get the pipe hot so smoke at a slow pace. Bit high on nicotine.

Pleasant room note, sweet mostly

Purchased From: JPB Tobacco Stores

1 person found this review helpful.

a puffer Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
a puffer (1)
Strong None Detected Full Strong

A strong tobacco, with a heavy latakia flavour. That is not bad but the balance of the mix takes away from it. I must admit I am not a fan of KY tobacco which others state are part of this mixture. I find it smokes better after it dries a bit and doesn't need more than a relight or two. Overall I am having a tough time finishing the tin.

Purchased From: 4 Noggins

1 person found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30124)
Medium to Strong Mild Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

This was pretty good stuff. With most of a tin under my belt, here goes:

Tin note smells like clove cigarettes. I believe this flake has been flavored with wine.

The flakes are not dried out, but more crumbly than pliable. Fold and stuff did not work out.

Alight, I find the taste intriguing: it's definitely latakia, but not a "dry" latakia (a la Captain Earle's Ten Russians) or an overwhelming latakia (a la C&D's Billy Budd). Some may describe this as "wine-like", but to me the flavoring presents itself as "smoky cheddar wheel". And the nicotine is there: by mid-bowl, you may set this one down for a moment.

Overall, probably not quite four stars, but a very solid three-plus.

1 person found this review helpful.

hiatus67 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
hiatus67 (6)
Medium to Strong None Detected Very Full Strong

Very nice blend for tasting the Syrian Latakia. It is not very easy to smoke all day and it is a bit uni dimensional, but for a first and second bowl it provides a very pleasant smoking experience. With it I've tried my first custom blend, mixing 1:1 with No.2 Virginia Mixture from Astley's, a VA/Per. The result was awesome and this was the beginning for me to blending my own mixtures, now I play with blending tobaccos and I smoke mainly my owns

1 person found this review helpful.

Xeneize Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Xeneize (275)
Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Tolerable

Very nice Virginia/Latakia, well balanced, with Latakia in the lead role and sweet Virginias to complement. Similar to SG Commonwealth, they both share a lack of depth compared to traditional English mixtures, but they deliver for the Latakia craving smokers and those not too fond on Orientals.

1 person found this review helpful.

constantsmoker Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
constantsmoker (65)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant to Tolerable

A very hearty blend, rich in nicotine, that should be smoked slowly, patiently and, above all, with respect or one is forced to lay down both pipe and body until the vertigo passes. Latakia Flake's strength is not apparent until one has smoked about a third of the bowl. After that, when the strength of this tobacco reaches its apex, it might make one think of Penzance wearing brass knuckles. I would recommend a small to medium size bowl (or a nice, long churchwarden) to "safely" enjoy this tobacco and dodge those upper cuts to the chin. Don't misunderstand me: this is a fine blend, and I am quite surprised that it seems to have escaped notice amongst pipe smokers.

1 person found this review helpful.

Precious Paul Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Precious Paul (20)
Strong Mild to Medium Full Strong

Really well balanced flake, tin was nearing 3 years old when I opened it and throughout a few weeks with it, especially having time to sit down and think about it, she's a keeper. Exceptional balance between smoke/sweet/spice. There is a lovely floral topping that I'm finding I like more and more. This has some heft nicotine wise so keep some water handy. Delicious.

Pipe Used: Seemed to shine in a Morgan Bones poker

Age When Smoked: 3 years

Purchased From: Boda Pipes Greenville, SC

Similar Blends: Closest I can get is if SG Sam's Flake and SG Balkan had a love child, and that's still not entirely accurate.

Nobody has rated this review yet.