Crème Caramel, a great aromatic blend from McClelland, has a lot to offer those that enjoy a sweet dessert tobacco. The tin/bag note of the 4oz sample that I received had the aroma of sugar, syrup, and you guessed it, caramel. I have to say that I truly enjoyed the tin note on this one, and I would gather that anyone that likes caramel or maple syrup will also enjoy this blend. The tobacco appears to be of good quality, and I did not find any twiggy, woody, or hard bits mixed in with the bulk sample that I received. The cut of the tobacco appears to be rather thin, short ribbons of Virginia, mixed with smaller broken pieces of cut Cavendish. The moisture level of the tobacco that I sampled was a bit on the damp side, so I had to dry the tobacco for thirty minutes to an hour before smoking a bowl each time. Once the tobacco had dried for some time, I was able to keep a bowl lit with little to no effort, and relights were minimal. Once the tobacco was lit, the first flavors that I was greeted with reminded me of a straight vanilla Cavendish, however the more that I smoked the blend, the more I was able to detect flavors that were similar to maple syrup, honey, and then caramel. The flavors seemed to stay pretty consistent throughout the smoke, and remained that way to the bottom of the bowl. The burn characteristics of the tobacco were decent once dry, and little time was spent tamping and relighting, however if the tobacco is not given some time to dry out, you will be tending to the pipe frequently. As for the room note, those around me commented on the aroma and made mention that it smelled of vanilla, so I take this to mean that the smell of the tobacco is pleasant. Overall, this is a quality aromatic that will likely be enjoyed by anyone that enjoys sweet dessert tobaccos with flavors of vanilla, maple, honey, and caramel.
The Virginia is grassy sweet, though sublimated by the caramel topping, which does the same to the black cavendish, which is a little creamy. The caramel has a decent flavor, but lacks depth. Has almost no nicotine. Burns at a reasonable pace with a fairly consistent flavor, though it may need some dry time. Leaves a little moisture in the bowl, and needs an average number of relights. Won't bite. Has a pleasant after taste and room note. An unobtrusive all day smoke.
Yet another aromatic that smells great in the bag, but has virtually zero taste. It was like smoking hot steam and left the bowl goopy and wet. I don't dislike aromatics, but there are better ones out there.
I normally wait until the afternoon or evening to load up with an aromatic, but after smoking Bow Legged Bear this morning I needed something sweet to take away the taste! This did the job!
It's a touch too moist on arrival, so I aired it when it did. The composition includes more Virginia than Black Cavendish, with the Virginia pieces being much finer in build. The smell from the pouch is unmistakable as being caramel.
There isn't a great deal of nuances to decipher in the smoke, it's a basic, sweet, flavour. The caramel rules the roost, is followed up by the Virginia, with some delicate vanilla traits from the Cav'. The caramel actually seems clearer for the first third, becoming more of a nondescript sweetness subsequently. The smoke from No. 400 has a cool temperature, and doesn't bite, even when pushed to do so.
Nicotine: mild. Room-note: nice.
No. 400? A good aromatic, but after a few bowls could be perceived as a bit boring for a full score. So three stars it is:
Well done aromatic. Not sticky and goopey. Light casing that doesn't taste like chemicals. Nice caramel flavor that burns well down to white ash. The casing doesn't completely overpower the tobacco, but still is light. Another job well done by McClelland!
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