Rattray's 40 Virginia: Tasting Notes
I've been a big fan of the Rattray's Virginia blends for years. From Brown Clunee and Old Gowrie, to Marlin Flake and Hal O' the Wynd, there is something for most occasions (as far as strength and flavor go) for the dedicated VA smoker. However, there did seem to be one gap on the lighter side of things, which is why I was particularly excited to find out that Rattray's 40 Virginia is a blend of bright, loose-cut leaf, and nutty-sweet cut plug and cube cut bits. The result is a mild-yet-flavorful blend with ample amounts of sweet honey and grassy notes. This one burns well and satisfies right out of the tin, but I'm betting my bottom dollar that this will age incredibly well. It has also arrived just in time to serve as an outstanding warm-weather smoke!
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Very nice review, Shane. I'm looking forward to picking up some Rattray's after this, been a while since I've had any of them in stock.
Shane turned me unto Rattray's, particularly Hal'O the Wynd awhile back - to which I am eternally grateful, I simply love it. My tin of 40 should be in tomorrow and I am definitely looking forward to trying it. Though I'll always stand by that McClelland is the king of Virginia's, Rattray's is the crown prince for sure. Their entire "Virginia" line is thoroughly enjoyable. Not at all monochromatic in taste - there are subtle and distinct differences, not just in strength but in flavor.
I just cannot help myself to state this though. Whilst I watch you light your pipes Shane, I am simply aghast! toss away that blasted lighter! Tobacco should only be light by natural fire, the match. Let the sulfur burn off for half a second and light the leaf with the least heat possible. Crazy I am not. You will in fact pick up more flavors and subtleties never before experienced, even in your most regular blend. Same applies for cigars, or those little white sticks. No butane, no naptha, just fire placed to your precious leaf. The slower the leaf can release it's sugars and VOC's (volatile organic compounds) the more flavor you'll receive. All VOC's eventually turn to sugar, but the slower you can allow that to happen to more inherent flavor you'll receive.
Enjoy the videos very much, I find them oh so ever more helpful than the customer reviews.
Excellent review, Shane. Although you can't put a beautiful cutty front and center and not even tell me who made it, lol.
@Zach Thank you! The Rattray's stuff really is excellent. I will say that in addition to trying this 40 VA, I'm also glad that I finally got around to seriously trying Brown Clunee earlier this year. I have had it before but dismissed it as being too light when compared to Hal, Gowrie, and Marlin.
@TIOK Glad you're enjoying Hal O' the Wynd as much as I do! It's such a great blend and totally unique in the vast selection of VAPer blends. The KY forwardness really makes that blend special.
@Flatticus that Cutty is an old (1970s) Punto Oro! I really wish the Savinelli 402 shape was available in more finishes, but I do have a Natural Rustic Petite 402 that's such a great smoker!
Thanks, Shane, I'll have to keep an eye out for one.
Great to see the review, Shane! Thanks for the heads up on Rattray's 40 Virginia. Bravo!
Looking to try this blend after watching your review. I've been getting into straight Va's a lot more letely.
By the way, that lighter kicks ass!