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Hand-blended, premium pressed Virginia flake tobaccos. A fine vintage, naturally sweet, in limited quantity.

Notes: Produced in 1992, 1994-present in limited quantities. Tinned in July of the respective year.

Blended ByMcClelland Tobacco Company
Manufactured ByMcClelland Tobacco Company
Blend TypeStraight Virginia
Packaging50 grams tin, 100 grams tin
ProductionNo longer in production
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Mild, Medium, Medium to Strong
None Detected
Room Note
7 reviews
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JimInks Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
JimInks (2934)
Mild to Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant

The red Virginias provide a lot of tangy, ripe dark fruit and earth, along with a touch of spice, sugar, grass, plus some citrus and wood. The light “vinegar” essence weakens as you go along. The strength is closer to medium than it is to mild. The taste just reaches the medium level. The nic-hit is a step past mild. No chance of bite or harshness, and has no rough edges. Burns cool, clean and a tad slow with a mostly consistent flavor from start to finish. Leaves little moisture in the bowl, and needs some relights. Has a pleasant after taste. An all day smoke; one of the more refined, smoother entries in this series.


4 people found this review helpful.

Rev. Smoke Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Rev. Smoke (21)
Medium None Detected Medium Pleasant to Tolerable

I smoked this tin in 2009, took some notes, and never posted a review as I lost my notes. I found them and realized I did not post a review yet.

Here it is, 6 years awaiting. So, I opened this tin to find that the broken flakes were covered with white, in some cases chunky looking. Upon closer inspection, the white is crystalline, absolutely glistening on very piece. I have been smoking pipe since 1980 and this is the most sugar I have ever seen on any tobacco, it had me quivering with anticipation. As usual, I got some out and let it sit a few hours to get to optimal smoking humidity level. Sweet, light caramel, ephemeral hints of citrus, and simple Virginia goodness. Amazing how cool it smoke thou ,considering the amount of sugar obviously visible.

This is the best Christmas Cheer I have ever had, but it is also the oldest I have ever smoked. Does this mean you should age all Christmas Cheer? No! I have had 10 year old CC that had no sugar on it.

I got this tin from a shop that was closing its doors and blowing out all inventory a few years before I opened it. This tin and a couple others were there and priced to sell. Unfortunately, I was more into cigars and picked up more of them than the dusty tins Ishould have been picking up for $5 a tin.

I wish I would have bought a couple more tins.

5 out of 5 halos.

Pipe Used: Castello, Radice, cobs

Age When Smoked: 13 years

Purchased From: Door county, Wisconsin shop

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30111)
Medium to Strong None Detected Medium Very Pleasant

Holy cow!!! this is the absolute best VA blend that I have tried. I purchased this tin off of eBay, and well paid a pretty penny for it. My only regret is that I have not seen any more of the stuff. The tin note is of plums and the McClelland vinegar. Upon lighting the tobacco it was immediately obvious that I had found something special. The blend had a nice sweetness to it, and really burned well. There was never any combustion problems or and tongue bite. There was a nice balance of tang and sweetness, that I quite honestly have never experienced in my life. There was a bit of a nicotine kick associated with it, but most VA fans will be rather familiar with it. The blend rubbed out very nicely and really shined from beginning to end. I brought the tin to my tobacco shop and shared it with some friends, and everyone shared the same feelings that I did. We are all deeply disappointed that this tin is probably the last that any of will ever see. If you ever get a chance to buy a tin of this vintage, pay whatever you can to experience it for your self. EXTREMELY RECOMMENDED

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30111)
Medium to Strong None Detected Full Tolerable

I recently popped open one of my recently- discovered tins of McClelland's Christmas Cheer '94, which I had last smoked back in early 95. For those unfamiliar with this series, Christmas Cheer is a single-field straight virginia, pressed and sliced into ribbons.

Popping the lid revealed the aroma of plums and dried figs and cherries, with a slight vinegary note (McClelland fans will recognize this :-). Hoisin sauce -- definitely hoisin sauce. With cherries.

As is typical for McClelland, the tobacco was still at perfect moisture. CC94 is by now a dark-brown dried-fig color, with the occasional lighter streak. Under the light it sparkes cheerfully, revealing the crystals of sugar that have developed over the years. Some flakes are so covered in sugar that they have an actual sheen.

The initial charring light was a bit tricky, it didn't want to char evenly -- sugar doesn't burn easily :-) An additional charring light, then the real light, and a deep puff revealed that the 94 had settled down dramatically from the raw, acid form it had when new. The initial taste was still of orange and cherry, but now it had been entirely stripped of bite. Over the next few minutes, as the tobacco settled down and I cooled down the burn, the flavor deepened and darkened while maintaining its intensity.

Depending on temperature the flavor varied, including various combinations of charred-pork, raisins, orange, cherry, allspice, candied ginger, salted pecans, chocolate, and caramel(usually in concert with the orange notes).

The ash was a mottled combination of medium and dark gray, but the tobacco burned evenly and consistently down to within a quarter-inch of the bottom, when I had to abort because of the rapidly falling temperature. During that time the flavor and aroma stayed remarkably consistent within the impressive range mentioned earlier.

Overall impression: Impressive, most impressive. Well worth the wait. Now if I can just keep my hands off the other two tins.

2 people found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30111)
Medium None Detected Medium to Full Pleasant

I've had this tin of 1994 stored for quite some time now and have managed to keep it humidified for lo' these many years, smoking some during the holidays. At present it is mostly a deep brown color w/some lighter strands here and there. I had previously broken some of it up and subjected it to the food processor for further shredding. There is still a muted "McC. aroma." It packs well and the routine lighting ritual was all I needed. Some sharpness has remained, but it isn't nearly as sharp as I remember it from when it was new. The smoke has mellowed, but some VA. tang is still there. A citrusy note is evident, most like a lemony flavor but sweet in a discreet manner. The typical flavor of VA. seems darker and heavier as compared to bright and light. The tobak is burning even and cool, but a bit of tongue tingling is occurring here and there to remind you not to smoke this stuff too fast. I'm enjoying this dried apricot(?) flavor I'm now tasting, and the smoke is still cool and bite free as long as I don't puff too fast. The flavor is there and I don't have to puff hard to retain the taste level. Bit of a gurgle near mid-bowl, no worries, just one cleaner. Nearing the finish there is a wee bit of harshness/charbroiled taste but it's negligible and not enough to ruin the pleasure already derived from smoking this tasty tobak. Burns to a fluffy gray ash and leaves the pipe clean and dry. I had originally purchased two tins of this back in 1994 and didn't really like it that much because it was too bitey and sharp. I gave the second tin to a friend for Christmas because he enjoyed tobaccos like this. I can only say now that I wish I had purchased more of this when it was available, I imagine what popping a sealed tin could be like now. Oh well, live and learn. Not an overly dramatic, "I just gotta have it" smoke that one could not live w/o it, but very enjoyable for sure, and if you can find some you may want to give it a try. Works for me.

1 person found this review helpful.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30111)
Mild None Detected Mild to Medium Pleasant

I smoked a tin of this when it first came out and enjoyed it but it didn't knock my socks off. With 20+ years of aging, it does! Looks and smells in the tin like every other CC offering. Desperately needed some drying time, which attests to the integrity of the tin, and it came replete with quite a few sugar crystals. I smoked 2 oz for this review and I'm saving the other two for special occasions.

I seem to say this a lot as I smoke other vintage Virginias, but this is probably the finest I've ever smoked. There is no doubt that McClellands Virginias age beautifully and this one is no exception... except that it seems to have done better than most. The fermented aroma in the tin was subdued but that didn't bother me. With proper drying, this one was absolutely incredible, with some wonderful spice cake flavors and a heightened zip of carefully grown and selected red Virginia that is aged to perfection. This was further helped in the flavor department by eschewing smoothness for zest. It was a mouth-filling smoke with a huge amount of character. I haven't been able to find any of the '92 vintage (and probably won't now that McClellands is closing up shop) but I can't imagine it smoking better than this one. This will be a once or twice a year smoke, for those times when I've earned a huge reward. Excellent tobacco... just accentuates the huge loss pipe smokers will feel once McClelland products are scarce.

Nobody has rated this review yet.

Emeritus Account Reviewed By DateRating StrengthFlavoringTasteRoom Note
Emeritus Account (30111)
Mild None Detected Extremely Mild (Flat) Unnoticeable

1998: Every once in a while, a really blasphemous tobacco manages to get past my security system and find its way, like some reeking goblin, into the sanctity of my home. This "review" is a first ever for me - a review of a tobacco that I have not even smoked. The vile weed was brought over by my friend Paul, who is otherwise of excellent and sound judgement on all things tobacco-ish. He thought to try this for a change of pace, since many had spoken highly of it on ASP. However, the smell from the can was enough to make me cringe, as it was a bit like what I imagine the Tall Man's (of "Phantasm" fame) embalming room must smell like. This is a VIRGINIA tobacco, and Paul put it best when he stated, "It smells like tongue bite in a can". The can smell was enough to convince me that I owned no pipe which I disrespected enough to inflict with this substance, but Paul bravely soldiered on and sampled the mix. In short order my entire vaulted great room was filled with the smell of burning grass and cardboard, which stuck like cigarette odor for the entire next day. On the positive side, Paul reported that this was not the flavor of the tobacco, but that instead it tasted exactly like "hot air". This report was later verified by another of our experimental subjects, Joey Clodfelter, who reported that the taste was steam as well. If this is Christmas Cheer, I'll take that stocking full of coal now...

Nobody has rated this review yet.