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A rich and elusive mixture of over 15 different tobaccos! The best ribbon cut Virginias, Virginia flake, pressed Virginia cake, mild cavendish, and a tiny bit of lightly flavored sweet cavendish all come together to deliver a rough but ready rubbed tobacco that delivers a big Virginia taste, with a slightly sweet finish. If you were a fan of "Scottish Ribbon", a fantastic tobacco made by Ed in the Connoisseur shop in NY, you should give this one a try!

BrandPark-Lane Tobacconist
Blended ByPaul Bonacquisti
Blend TypeVirginia Based
ContentsCavendish, Virginia
CutReady Rubbed
ProductionCurrently available
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Mild, Mild to Medium
Extremely Mild
Mild to Medium
Room Note

Favorite Of 2 Users

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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (3004)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

The various Virginias and cavendishes offer a multiplicity of flavors, though this blend isn’t as complex as it seems. The aspects include a light tanginess, some earth and citrus, a little dark fruit, grass and sugar, and a smattering of honey and toast. The strength and taste levels are a step short of being in the center of mild to medium. The nic-hit is mild. No chance or bite or harshness, and has no rough spots. Burns cool and clean at a reasonable pace though the flavors waft and wane with some inconsistency. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and requires an average number of relights. Has a very pleasant, short lived after taste. It’s not a flavor bomb, but is an easy going smoke that has just enough going for it to hold your interest as you go about your day.


6 people found this review helpful.

Pipestud Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Pipestud (1829)
Mild Mild Mild Pleasant

I'm not quite sure what to make of this blend. I smoked about six bowls over a period of a week and got six different flavor presentations. Mostly, a sweet (only lightly) Virginia with some odd overtones of other leaf that just didn't ring my chimes. Also, this one smokes a tad on the hot side - but then, some Virginias do that to me. I suppose this one is going to float some boats but it really kinda sorta sank mine.


4 people found this review helpful.

fr_tom Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
fr_tom (393)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

in the pouch, I see mostly tan ribbons of short to medium length. There are a few pieces of mostly rubbed out brown flake. The pouch note is tobacco with no evident topping or spice leaf, and it is slightly sweet. I had some "shake" in my sample. My sample came it a very good moisture level.

The cavendish in this is a brown cavendish and it gives a mellow smooth quality to the Virginia-forward blend. The Virginia is sweet and there is a little citrus. There is some wheat toast in the flavor when sipped that reminds me of Mac Baren's Mixture Scottish Blend. Puffing brings out the sweet.

This was a very good smoke and I enjoyed it. It is easy to recommend.

2 people found this review helpful.

clanobucklin Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
clanobucklin (105)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Soft, tasty and easy on the palate. Has a semi sweet taste on the finish. Not overly complex but I certainly don't think this a monotone or "pedestrian" type of smoke. Goes great anytime of a day - especially with a cup of Joe. This tobacco comes out in a rubbed out form - so it's easy to pack. I don't really tadte cavendish - so if it's there it's completely subtle. Mixing a little Perique in it might make it pop a little more but then it wouldn't be what it is - which is a very well executed VA blend that deserves a place in one's cellar.

Pipe Used: Radice Rind Canadian

Age When Smoked: New

Purchased From: Park Lane

2 people found this review helpful.

idbowman Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
idbowman (26)
Mild Extremely Mild Medium Pleasant

It seems that I'm to be the voice of dissent where CF is concerned. This is a blend that I very much wanted to enjoy, as I tend to like all things Virginia "plus" (whether that be perique, burley, cavendish, or oriental). Unfortunately, the tobacco and I never got around to seeing eye-to-eye.

To its credit, it looks and smells to be very well executed, it is very low maintenance, burns steadily but not too hot, and is low enough in nicotine that it could be an all-day blend for those who enjoy it. In short, this blend has everything going for it, with the unfortunate exception of the taste. I tried the blend multiple times in differently shaped/sized pipes, briar and cob, and with different approaches to packing, hoping to hit on a winner.

The results were uniformly unexciting. There are brief moments when it shines - peaks of tart virginia with the underlying natural sweetness of the cavendish. These moments were few and far between for me, though. Most of the time, I found the blend to be monotonous. For me, great blends alternate between which component tobacco gets to be the star of a given this case, it seemed like both the VA and the Cavendish were both trying to melt into the background to stay out of the lime light - that can work if both/all components marry in the background to create something special. In this case, the result was bland.

This is a two-star blend for me - not because it's didn't bite me, didn't taste ashy, and seemed to be made of quality leaf. It's two-stars because it was too pedestrian. I wouldn't refuse to smoke it again, but I can't imagine ever wanting to purposely reach for it, either.

Hopefully, and I mean this sincerely, your mileage will vary. For my part, I prefer MacBaren's Stockton by a wide margin, even though it requires a bit more attention.

2 people found this review helpful.

SteelCowboy Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
SteelCowboy (685)
Mild to Medium Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

Having never tried Ed Burak’s Connoisseur’s “Scottish Ribbon” (foolishly walking by the shop many times and never going in) I cannot make any comparisons. But on its own, Connoisseur’s Flake from Park Lane stands up independently very nicely! Lots of great Virginia flavor intermingled with just enough Cavendish makes for a tasty blend. As another reviewer pointed out, looking at this blend in the pouch, doesn’t give any indication of how well this blend tastes. I am not normally a Scottish blend smoker, but this clean burning; mild blend is a real treat. Normally, I smoke my tobaccos quite dry, but I find that this blend needs a bit of moisture to bring out the best flavor. Having jarred this for nearly three years didn’t hurt either. I can’t say that it tops my current favorite Scottish from Compton’s, but it is good enough to make me wish that I had cellared more than just a couple of ounces.

Age When Smoked: 3 years

Purchased From: Park Lane Tobacconist

2 people found this review helpful.

BC Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BC (21)
Mild None Detected Medium Tolerable

This is a favorite, as was the Ed Burak's "Scottish Ribbon" from his Connoisseur Shop in Manhattan. This is a clone of that mixture. I think it is a little rough out of the tin, but it is great aged at least 9 months. It is an all day smoke for me; it is my "go to" especially in the Summer and Fall when I am working outside. It is easy to pack, burns with a minimum amount of relights, and with very little dottle. I taste citrus and grass, and a little earth, but the attraction to me is a subtle sweetness I always look for in Virginias. It is fairly consistent, but I do not find it boring at all. It will bite if your cadence is too fast.

Age When Smoked: 2.5 years

Purchased From: Park Lane

1 person found this review helpful.

puro66 Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
puro66 (73)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

My PL journey is well underway. I know nothing of the blend CF seeks to emulate and that's probably a good thing from a reviewing standpoint. It is mostly light in color and smells all natural in the pouch. It's looks are quite deceiving for there is far more flavor and complexity at work than first appears. There is a faint sweetness at play but it is so far in the background it could be overlooked. Excellent grades of virginias are clearly at play and I find it most enjoyable with no tongue bite and it smokes dry right to the bottom of the bowl.

A very pleasant surprise and I'm looking forward to more bowls!

1-20-14 Update: I have found myself reaching for CF three days in a row, this tobacco is surprising me and seems to be on it's way to a fourth star!!

Pipe Used: Il Ceppo Panel billiard

1 person found this review helpful.

Blackhorse Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Blackhorse (96)
Mild Mild Medium Pleasant

This is to kind of get at least an annual review on this posted.

This is indeed one of the best blends out there of a specific genre. The genre is one perhaps only I use for classifying blends. There are a group of blends that I really enjoy...all are a melange of various tobaccos using VA as a base, and rounded out with any of a number of others...Burley, Perique, Turkish, Cigar Leaf, etc. But whatever the ingredients or proportions, the keys are balance and nuanced mingled flavors. Also, they tend toward being fairly mild. Their 'thing' is that I can stuff them into a bowl, light it up, puff away absently without having to be tended to and exhibiting a very forgiving attitude to both the wild ass puffer (they are low or no bite blends) and the one whose bowl keeps going DGT is good. And the bottom line is that the flavors are natural tobacco flavors, a little tart, a little sweet...and totally delicious. They are invariably designed by one of the gurus of modern tobacco blending, as these things really are works that only a genius could come up with. After all, perfection isn't easy.

Now whether or not you go for the above song and dance, this stuff is a seriously excellent blend that you really do need to try.

1 person found this review helpful.

denholrl Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
denholrl (22)
Mild to Medium None Detected Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

After Ed Burak closed his Connoisseur Pipe Shop in Manhattan in Feb. '09, I received many requests through my Connoisseur Pipe Shop Online site for his tobaccos, none of which were still available. Ed had chosen not to pass his recipes on to another blender. He had told me that Scottish Ribbon was a fermented Virginia cavendish, pressed with a spray of sugar water between the layers of leaf. I sent a sample of Scottish Ribbon from my cellar to Paul Bonacquisti who blended a few slightly different interpretations of this blend and sent them out to a number of regular Scottish Ribbon afficienados for comments. Park Lane Connoisseur's Flake is one of those interpretations and the one I found most approximated Scottish Ribbon. To my palate (but apparently not to everyone's), it's spot on. Another reviewer found it unlike Scottish Ribbon. Another of Paul's testers thought that a different batch was closer to the original and Paul now offers that one as Liebman's Scottish Flake; delicious, but not quite Scottish Ribbon-y enough for me. The differences in opinion may be in part due to the fact that the Scottish Ribbon sample I sent Paul had been cellared for a couple of years and, to my mind, improved thereby. But, for those used to "fresh" Scottish Ribbon, this could explain the discrepencies.

The Connoisseur's Flake is definitely an all-day tobacco and earns my highest recommendation. It is mild enough to be smoked repeatedly and flavorful enough that you'll want to do so. I don't believe it contains Perique as was suggested by an earlier reviewer. Scottish Ribbon didn't and Paul's description of Connoisseur's Flake does not mention any use of that condiment.

1 person found this review helpful.

strongirish Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
strongirish (249)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

First off let me say at first I did not like this blend on the first couple of smokes. But the more I smoked it the more I liked it and the past few days I have smoked nothing but it. it is a very tart smoke, has some sweetness and the perique wafts through on and off making it a touch spicey. It is very mild, can be smoked all day without any problem and it is certainly not a tongue biter at all. Infact is smokes nice and cool, at a nice slow pace, and smokes all the way down the pipe very dry leaving a fine medium grey ash with little dottle at the bottom of the pipe. The pouch aroma is peaty and spicy smelling, and the cut is rough flakes in a khaki to medium brown color. It is usually just the right moisture content to smoke right off and it lights and smokes very easy on the first light with just a little rise. The room note is nice to a piper but to others is a little cigarette like. The smoke that one gets is full and creamy and just a delite to smoke after one gets used to the black cavendish in the blend. it is subtle anyway and adds body. The main player in it is the VA which is semi sweet and soft. This blend is consistant with most other Park Lane Blends, quality tobaccos, soft blends, that are very tasty and great smokes. I will be buying more of thistoo cellar. I highly recommend trying it. It's right up there with Red Paramour which is what I think of as their best blend.

1 person found this review helpful.

slightlyfermentedvirginiaflake Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
slightlyfermentedvirginiaflake (11)
Mild to Medium Mild Mild to Medium Pleasant

I smoked Scottish Ribbon off and on for about 15 years and always considered that tobacco to be a favorite. Since Scottish Ribbon is no longer available, I was pleased to learn of Park Lane's "The Connoisseurs Flake. I have to admit, at first I was disappointed, this is not Scottish Ribbon (not sure it is supposed to be). This tobacco lacks the same sublte sweetness that Ed Burak explained comes from the fermented Virginia (?) HOWEVER, after smoking this tobacco for about a week my palate and nose started to pick up on the subtle characteristics of this Virginia blend. This tobacco has a taste and a sweetness that is all its own; more subtle than Burak's. If you are a virginia lover, as I am, you will find this tobacco extremely pleasing and certainly a potential all day companion. The Connoisseurs Flake is now one of my "go to" tobaccos. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BLEND! However, if you are looking for Burak's Scottish Ribbon, to me, this is not really it...BUT THAT IS OK! I hope the candidness of my review is not taken too harshly. However, I appreciate what "denholrl" has added about this tobacco. Finally, not that this tobacco needs defense, but in all my seaching for something that can fill the void of not being able to get Scottish Ribbon...This tobacco come closest to replacing that fine blend than anything else I have found... Thanks to Paul for taking on the challenge of duplicating Scottish Ribbon!!!

1 person found this review helpful.

babysinister Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
babysinister (55)
Mild Mild Medium Pleasant

Sweet cavendish, flavorful citrusy Virginias, handblended. A relaxing and amiable all-day smoke. It's not a nic bomb and I'm not looking for one so it suits me fine for an all day comfortable smoke. Sipped slowly and filled on the loose side in a medium sized or large bowl that is well broken in it can smoke cooler than otherwise, and goes down to a fine gray ash. A winner.

1 person found this review helpful.

Max1a Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Max1a (38)
Mild to Medium Mild Medium Pleasant

A wonderful, enticing smoke. Connoisseur's Flake is a slow smoke. Puff very lightly to capture the true taste and wonderful aroma of this blend. This could be an all day companion. I work with my hands and I find this smoke to be perfect for stuffing a great big billiard and just letting it simmer out there while I go about my tasks. No nose burn from breath smoking, no nasty mouth feel or bad tastes. The soft cavendished tobaccos and the long cut allow it to stay lit seemingly forever There is an oh so faint hint of vanilla & whiskey aroma to this blend but it IS NOT an aromatic. Pure virgina bliss. One of the few tobaccos that I can actually smell the aroma when I return to the room. I never smoked Ed Burak's Scottish Ribbon, but this tobacco is a solid 4 stars +. Probably won't pass muster for those that smoke heavy english or powerful VA/Pers. but for the rest of us it is a wonderful discovery.

1 person found this review helpful.

BrounHaus Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
BrounHaus (1)
Very Mild None Detected Mild Very Pleasant

Spectacular. Have been a Red Paramour fan for a couple years, But could never recall the flavor from my first couple ounces. Spent a while trying other vp's also trying to chase down the flavor on my mind. I didnt mind since I am fond of perique. But it was the perique that was throwing me off track. When I tried Connoisseurs Flake, I knew I had found the Bayou home in my mind. That sweet virginia mix alone was what I had been after. Perfectional taste, burns clean and I do not detect the cavendish, which for me is fine. If I want a bit of spice occasionally, will just mix some red paramour back in. Other than that, Its a home run.

Pipe Used: varies

Purchased From: Park Lane

Similar Blends: red paramour, scottish flake.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30125)
Mild Mild Mild to Medium Very Pleasant

I can't say much more then has been written in the other reviews. I smoked Burak's Scottish Ribbon for years, went through all I had in the cellar and found out about this blend. It has a lovely pouch note and is just a pleasure to smoke. As in all blends with VAs sip and enjoy!

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30125)
Mild Extremely Mild Mild Pleasant

I second everything the previous reviewers have stated! A wonderful smoke!

Update 12/31/2011:This tobacco must have been overlooked by the pipe smoking community. I can't believe there aren't more reviews posted here! I'm putting Connoisseurs Flake in my personal top five blends of all time. In my thirty five years of pipe smoking I've burned a bunch of tobacco and this is one of the very best!

Nobody has rated this review yet.