Total smoking time: 1hr, 39 min.
Time in humi:
11 months at 64%
Unknown, but was fresh when received via a PIF from Kapathy last July.
Firm cigar, very firm. Slightly toothy wrapper, beautiful deep brown leather appearance. Label is very modern, you'd see a guy at a UFC fight wearing this on his tshirt. Prelight draw is tight, but not too tight.
Begins nicely, baking chocolate and baking spices, both fairly mild Notes of wood and a bit of leather. So far not a premium stick, but decent. At this point my nose is dry, but a bit stuffy, might be allergies, so my palate might not be as sensitive as normal. Burn is initially a bit wavy. As the first third progresses, the flavors are medium in body, wood at the forefront. Good flavors, but not well balanced, I'm very muchwishing the balance was a tipped in favor of the chocolate and spice and that the wood would take a backseat. Leather fades in as the wood dials down a bit. Balance is better now, but I still would prefer more. About an inch and half in, suddenly the balance is right. Cocoa is more prominent and the wood finally takes a backseat. Still a bit oaky for my taste, but much better. Also a bit of pepper on the retrohale adds character. Ash still hasn't fallen and seems quite firm.
As I'm typing about the ash, it falls unceremoniously all over my lap and reading. Simultaneously, the pleasantness wears off a bit. The balance of flavors remain, but there's a slightly harsh edge to it. After a 45 second break, I find the cigar requires a relight. The dry wood is back again, but green (ie fresh, uncured) hardwood this time. Not sappy, exactly, or pine-y at all, just... green. Maybe like dandelion almost. Its an herbal bitterness, perhaps. Though it's not strong, it's not great, and I'm missing the cocoa. The retrohale gives a bit of the richness back, but not enough to counteract the green wood flavor. Burn line remains decent, not a single touch-up -excluding the relight- has been necessarily so far, though I sense I can't leave it alone for long if I want to avoid another relight. Draw remains tight, but not overwhelmingly so. As I hit the halfway mark, the flavors take on a slightly harsh tone again. A purge helps, but doesn't entirely fix the problem. That "green" tint continues to detract from otherwise decent balance of bakers chocolate and leather.
The chocolate is back to more of a cocoa, the leather and wood remain, and the three take turns taking the lead, but always with that "green" tint. Retrohaling helps the richness play a larger part, and the harshness has faded considerably. The draw is fairly right, and it dies again with about two inches left. I leave it out.
Probably not a cigar I would try again. While it seemed to have potential, I think it simply can't compare to the quality of flavor, or balance of flavors
I'm used to, even in budget cigars.