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Substitute for McClelland's Christmas Cheer Series

WWhermit

Well-known member
#43
We were playing thread whack-a-mole at the old site when this was happening; every day new folks posted in panic. It rippled through the community like grief. Also see "Dunhill."
Yeah, I know about Dunhill. Thankfully, I never got into them, since for me, smoking latakia is like smoking my clothes after hanging out at a campfire. Which is fine, if you're into that.

I still remember when Stonehaven and Escudo suddenly went underground.
 

WalkinStick

May actually be The Devil
Sales
Patron
Old Ted Award Winner
#46
I know they didn't want to sell the name to someone who would run it into the ground, but now that they're out, wouldn't it be nice if they'd slip a few recipe hints to C&D or someone to blend a few "McClelland inspired" varieties?
A lot of the problem is that the quality of leaf just isn’t there anymore, supposedly. I’m not a blender, but from everything I’ve read, the level of quality in red Virginia crops has just gone to hell.
 

sablebrush52

Well-known member
Patron
#48
There is nothing like McClelland CC, and frankly, there's noting like McClelland's Reds. But I'll disagree with the statement that the C&D small batch Carolina Red is completely different. It is different, but that funky matured Red Virginia is reminiscent of the McClelland Reds. Not the same, but in the ballpark. Of course, that's gone as well, until another good Red crop is found.

I guess I'll just have to console myself with the 20 tins of CC, 25 tins of various McCranie's, and the 33 tins of 40th in the cellar.

Sigh...
 

Ozark Wizard

Well-known member
#49
A lot of the problem is that the quality of leaf just isn’t there anymore, supposedly. I’m not a blender, but from everything I’ve read, the level of quality in red Virginia crops has just gone to hell.
No more federal subsidies, molds, infestation and don't forget the weather issues. That red triangle has taken a beating. Recent flooding has all but wiped out 2017/18 crops in the ground and stored curing. I've been all paranoid with my stuff, after a year of insane hornworm and torrential rains I'm growing in greenhouses. Not much can be grown that way, but it's safe.
 

sablebrush52

Well-known member
Patron
#50
I know they didn't want to sell the name to someone who would run it into the ground, but now that they're out, wouldn't it be nice if they'd slip a few recipe hints to C&D or someone to blend a few "McClelland inspired" varieties?
The problem is, you wouldn't have Mike McNeil watching every phase of the processing, and you wouldn't have the kind of labor intensive hand picked harvesting that gave McClelland's the kind of leaf that they worked with. It isn't just a matter of adding acetic acid to the contents. How many would be willing to pay $25 to $30 for a 2oz tin to cover the cost of producing blends of that quality?
 

tfdickson

Well-known member
Sales
Patron
#56
There’s a big difference between hoarding for eBucks and the kind of labor @sablebrush52 is talking about. I’m not sure the latter is sustainable given all the various issues laid out.
Not only that, let’s say some one is willing to put in that kind of labor and somehow manages to secure a sustainable supply of leaf. What happens to the price people are willing to pay for “new 5100” when it’s now more or less readily available and goes from the stuff of legend to the stuff on the shelf?
 

dmkerr

Fabulously non-descript
Staff member
#57
Not only that, let’s say some one is willing to put in that kind of labor and somehow manages to secure a sustainable supply of leaf. What happens to the price people are willing to pay for “new 5100” when it’s now more or less readily available and goes from the stuff of legend to the stuff on the shelf?
Interesting question! I think there would be a faction that says "hey great! 5100 for normal prices!" and there would be a faction that says "I'm willing to pay for the original stuff because the new stuff isn't the same".

I've gone both ways on this type of thing and as much as I love McClellands, they couldn't do Black Parrot or Old London Pebblecut the way Robert McConnell did it in the '90's. I have a stash of the old stuff and not a strand of the McClellands. And I just traded for a tin of Barking Dog when there are "match blends" for it available. I think once you get used to a tobacco tasting a certain way, substitutes usually don't cut it. There are, of course, exceptions.
 

Ozark Wizard

Well-known member
#58
You folks may or may not have any idea how often I have to handle the plants I grow. There's really no money in selling the stuff for conventional prices. Perhaps another reason for the demise of some of the stuff that was out there. For instance, it takes me twelve to twenty plants to have a pound of finished product. Eyeballing and handling each leaf several times. Then there's the risk of infestation along the way, right up to the time of blending. Then, are the 2016 plants going to give the same end results as 2015? Or 2017? ( think Christmas Cheer) So now you have to store lineages of leaf over several years to not experience a shift in behaviour profile. Storing it, particularly volatile leaf like Ginnies, will change it too. It's similar to wine. Maybe you've heard the expression of something being a good year, or vintage. Tobacco can be like that. Unless perhaps if you process, top and goop it enough you could not tell if it was tobacco or tree leaves.

Ask any retailer these days the benefits of sitting on products you can't sell for years. And the stock can go bad if you don't pay folks to rotate it and keep the bugs and rodents from spoiling your inventory.

Anyway, I'm off to another torture session with the physical therapist. Woohoo!