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McClelland and Ketchup?

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JJPHOTO

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Why do I always seem to find ketchup mentioned anywhere the McClelland name pops up? Anyone care to fill me in? :scratch:
 

Hermit

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It doesn't translate to the taste,
but the tin aroma is decidedly ketchupy.
 

jhuggett

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Some also describe it as vinegar like. The smell bothers me quite a bit and I do tend to taste it in the blends.
 

Carlos

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Christmas Cheer, and the Grand Orientals seem to have less of the scent than all the other blends I have tried from them. Does not bother me at all.
 

Natch

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McClelland's seems to be one of the "love or hate it" brands. Not as strongly as Mac Baren, but still I find many stokers either enjoy several of the MC blends, or avoid them all. The exceptions in their line seems to be any of the Frogs and Christmas Cheer, as it seems to me that there are many who will smoke them, but no other MC's blends.

Natch
 

Bent Stem

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I recently bought and jarred a pound of 2015 and smelled the "ketchup" smell for the first time. Not real bad but enough to recognize what I'd heard about. Not sure if it subsides with several years aging. I like Frog Morton OTT and have never sensed any ketchup smell there.
 

JJPHOTO

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I've been smoking some Arcadia that was sent to me - and it's a darn fine smoke. One of my favorites so far I'd say.
 

Justpipes

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jhuggett":zs6dlfbu said:
Some also describe it as vinegar like. The smell bothers me quite a bit and I do tend to taste it in the blends.
Same here. I have tried to give the McClelland blends a fair shot but they just never appealed to me for the above mentioned reasons. The only exception being the Oriental series that I have recently smoked and I didn't detect much of the vinegar/ketchup treatment in it. Not a bad smoke really. I haven't tried any of their other blends in a long time so I don't know if they still have the heavy vinegar/ketchup tin aroma and taste. I have heard people say that it is some kind of process that they use to prevent mold but I don't know for sure. The thing that un-nerved me about them is that you use to could leave the tins sitting with the lid off for months and they would never dry out. What could be on the tobacco that will not dry out for months?.........Smoking something like that just doesn't appeal to me. Maybe they have changed and someone else will weigh in on it.
 

Midnight Blues

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I have also noticed this in varying degrees in the tins of McClelland I've smoked and I will agree it does not transfer to the smoke. The last tin was a Grand oriental, Drama Reserve and it was amazing.

In the winter 09' issue of Pipes and Tobaccos magazine Fred Hanna touches on this very thing in an article called Tobaccos of yore, he states "I feel sorry for the people who cannot get past the McClelland aroma that is often referred to as ketchup. I personally love the smell of their old Virginias , and to my mind the aroma is more like old red wine ." So again I believe its up to the individual to decide, don't be afraid to try a blend just because some may not like it, it may just turn out to be your favorite.
 

CPT/VSG

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I've noticed it--so what? The question is how does the tobacco smoke? To my taste, McCelland has many outstanding blends. Many people feel they have access to superior tobacco, including the various orientals and Syrian Latakia. And their Virginians are outstanding. McClelland's tops in my book along with Germain and SG.
 

Muddler

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The vinegar does subside with time. It's worst when the stuff is pretty raw. I've rad that it's a sign of maturing tobacco (acetic acid/ bacteria) but that doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. I like to jat McC 2010 & 2015 for a year or so & then let it dry quite a bit. The vinegar aroma is really subdued by then.
 

Mr_Houston

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The trademark McClelland smell has never bothered me. I find it much more inviting than the lakeland flowers. But there is nothing about McClellands that is ketchupy. When you smell a tin, think cider vineger. Because, that is what I believe they use.

I have to believe that it is some version of a preservative, but a natural one. Better cider vineger than mold!
 

alfredo_buscatti

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I too think the ketchup smell is cider vinegar used to retard mold. It has never bothered me as I've never tasted it alter the tobacco a jot.

This is a topic that never goes away. I guess there are two camps, both of the members of which, who never tire of stating their opinions (as I just did);).
 

Justpipes

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When I have a hankering for malt vinegar, I go to the tavern and order some fish & chips with a bottle of malt vinegar to sprinkle on them. Afterward I enjoy a fine bowl of John Middleton Walnut along with a nice stout. :)
 

Wet Dottle

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The ketchup bouquet disappears soon after opening a tin. Simply open it a couple of days before smoking and let it air out for a little.
 

howellhandmade

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I, too, see it as a cyclical topic. If it's not the McClelland tin aroma, it's the propylene glycol in OTC and others. Some taste it and are put off, some don't notice it, and some object on principle. When I bought a pipe after a hiatus of a number of years, my first tin was McC #24, which I enjoyed enormously. If I had never encountered another tobacco and if nobody had mentioned it I wouldn't have noticed the "ketchup" aroma. It's something that stands out mostly in comparison with other brands, in my opinion. Others taste differently. I've also never noticed McC's taking longer to dry out than other brands, either -- the flakes I've had dried to a crisp just like G&H with time.

Jack
 

Ol'Dawg

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You need to take in consideration that Jack, at age ten, made his first pipe from a corncob and a bamboo stem in order to smoke some Red Man chewing tobacco one of his uncles left behind after a visit. :cheers:

Jim..who thinks that McC tobaccos have a cider vinegar aroma unlike any others
 

howellhandmade

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Guess I have to concede the point. If I'd never found anything beyond cobs and Red Man I'd probably have been fine with that, too. Sometimes I think people can, for a given substance, be divided into pandas and crows. Pandas have to have everything just so; crows may like some things better than others but will rarely turn up their noses at anything, especially when the alternative is nothing. For clarinet reeds, I'm a panda. Pretty much everything else, I'm a crow.

Jack
who thinks McClelland tobacco is way better to smoke than dried coffee grounds
 

Justpipes

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I'm a crow for sure! :D Except when it comes to McClelland blends. I guess I just never developed a taste for them. Maybe too many OTC blends.
 
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