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Oriental / English Tobacco » McClelland Collector Series Orient 996 Tobacco Reviews Write review

2 unique reviews

RATED Average Rating (by 2 users)
Flavor  rated 3/5   Recommend It?  rated 3/5   Tin Aroma  rated 2/5  
Brand: McClelland
Blender: McClelland Tobacco Company
Tin Description: A very special blend of sugary bright Virginia and aged, mellow red Virginia, seasoned with a good amount of reare Yenidje and a touch of Syrian latakia. Ready to smoke, but designed to age beautifully.
Country of Origin: US
Curing Group: Air Cured
Contents: Virginia, Latakia, Oriental
Cut: Ribbon
Packaging: 50 g tin

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# 17/4/2011 User rated 2/5
Review by cortezattic

Orient 996: let this one age a bit longer.

I purchased my supply of Orient 996 in May, 2010. After smoking a few bowls and not being terribly impressed, I stored the remainder of the tobacco in a Mason jar. It is a mix of loose, ribbon-cut leaves -- both dark brown and black -- with a sour, leathery, and slightly sweet aroma. McClelland's notorious sour smell dissipated somewhat during its nine month storage. The aging that has taken place has improved this blend noticeably, but not enough to rescue it from mediocrity.

Although the blend has good clarity, and develops a luxurious, thick smoke, there is nothing about it that I would call delectable. A better word would be "interesting" -- not because it regales the palate, but because it will challenge your ability to classify it. The spice-like and somewhat astringent Yenidje is prominent (think Oriental); but the velvety Latakia, while weak, is ubiquitous (think Balkan).

There is good balance and harmony among the components in this blend; but that doesn't say much when everything in the blend is just middling. I don't get any exotic impressions. To me it tastes like an astringent Oriental backed by 5100 Va red cake, playing in a smog of Latakia that creates more confusion than complexity.

This blend packs well, lights and burns nicely, and produces a medium bodied smoke with a mild-to-medium nicotine kick. It smokes coolly, dryly, and slowly to the bottom of the bowl -- and the whole time you'll be waiting for the fireworks to begin, but it never happens. My advice: let this one age a little longer.

User Rating
Tin Aroma -  rated 2/5
Flavor -  rated 2/5
Recommend It? -  rated 2/5
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# 8/2/2012 User rated 3/5
Review by Schmitz bitz

A Unique Blend

It is difficult to smoke this blend without making comparisons to itís "sister" blend, McClelland PCCA Tudor Castle; indeed, some pipe-smokers note that the blends seem to be almost one and the same, albeit the Tudor Castle featuring Perique whilst the Orient 996 features Syrian Latakia. I, however, feel that such a statement does not do either blend full credit. While there are numerous similarities, the differences are just as voluminous and marked. While the Tudor Castle provides a heady, stout and earthy smoke, Orient 996 is light, sweet and flavourful. Both blends are winners in my book, and have found homes within my cellar.

I Recommend It!

See the rest of my review at!

User Rating
Tin Aroma -  rated 2/5
Flavor -  rated 4/5
Recommend It? -  rated 4/5
Was this helpful?
50% said yes.           


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