Cigar Blog 101

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

2 Regular Guys Review: Rocky Patel Vintage 1990


Scott’s Review:

The Rocky Patel Vintage 1990 that Corona Chris gave us to smoke was a great looking box-pressed Churchill. This stick was so thoroughly box-pressed it was almost a perfect edged square. One thing was for certain, regardless of how this stick smoked, there was no danger of it rolling from the ashtray.

The wrapper of this V-90 was a dark chestnut brown and looked and felt oily to the touch. It smelled rich; like dark-chocolate with that dash of bitterness. The filler had a mellow toasty smell to it. So, it passed the sniff test, now it was time to cut it; light it; and smoke it!

The wrapper was beautiful, but the cap was not truly elegant. It was neat enough and proved durable to a guillotine cut. The stogie lit fast which concerned me a little –fearful of a hot fast burn. That was thankfully not to be as this cigar smoldered endlessly. The draw was optimal and offered up just enough resistance. The amount of smoke it produced was a little bit scant for some reason. Nevertheless it was a fairly cool and lingering medium-bodied smoke.

The aroma of this cigar was unmistakable. Not because it had a unique and standout aroma but because I smoked this stick last night on a warm extremely humid Florida evening. Every puff of this cigar reluctantly swirled with the heavy night air and painted a complete picture of the aroma. The V-90 smelled mostly like aged tobacco (how ironic) with a hint of leather and a bright tangy sweetness.

The taste was very mild and mellow almost to the point of being muted. It was certainly not full bodied and came in on the low side of medium strength. It had a cedary-woodiness to it and just a bit of a lightly sweet maltiness on the finish. The finish itself was medium length that was mostly clean but not quite there. I also found that if you even lightly oversmoke it a citrusy/acidic tang or bitterness would come through. But, this cigar is a great conversation cigar –you need to smoke it a while and then talk a while.

I’ve got no complaints about the burn, which was slow and quite even for the most part and yielded a grayish-white ash. The Rocky Patel Vintage 1990 is definitely an elegant smoke. I did find it to be a little lacking in complexity and I personally tend toward a fuller bodied stronger cigar. This cigar was mellow to the point of taking you along with it and for that I certainly didn’t mind it. There were a couple of loose threads strewn through this cigar but it did stay well shy of having any unpleasant edges to it. A nice smoke yet shy of the main event.

Colm’s Review:

Let me start off my stating that I will never use the term “lemon grass” when referring to a cigar. Single malt scotch, yes…cigars, no!

The appearance of the cigar was appealing although I typically prefer a shorter cigar. The feel was firm and texture of the wrapper was smooth and oily. The double banded maroon & gold ban was classic looking and the cigar had an aged wrapper leaf, dark in color. It’s a long, thinner cigar, box pressed with one edge that was very defined. I think the particular cigar I received was the one that rested on the bottom of the box on one side. I cut the cap with a Zikar cutter, which derived a nice clean sharp cut.

The pre light draw was good and the initial touch of the flame resulted in a smooth, mild taste. The first flavors were nutty and woody with a negligible finish. As I smoked more of the cigar, the finish was still light and flavors held consistent. I noticed that the burn became uneven and produced a flaky light colored ash. I had to correct the burn three times by burning off the elongated wrapper before it was finished.

Half way through I noticed something that I’ve never witnessed in a cigar. A thick stem was protruding from the very center of the cigar by at lease ¼ inch. I continued to smoke the cigar and it remained there until I set it down. It was annoying and caused an uneven burn. It was persistent to the point that I became curious and wanted to see how long I could keep it from falling off. Essentially, I made a game of it but ultimately realized that it did not reflect highly on the preparation/selection of the filler leaf.

The overall flavor on this cigar was consistent. However, the finish became slightly acidic as I neared the ¾ mark. I ultimately set the cigar down before I reached the bands, and sooner that I would have liked.

Overall, I think the first portions of the cigar were consistent and pleasant. This would be a fine morning cigar. The construction was good with the only problem being the odd stem. It’s a mild to medium bodied smoke that I found to be smooth up to the finish, but became slightly acidic towards the end.

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2 Comments:

  • At 9:52 AM, Anonymous (3rd)2nd Regular Guy said…

    How come Colm gets to use a fancy Zikar cutter and I'm stuck with my trusty old Xikar? Life's not fair!

     
  • At 11:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I had a similar problem with stems in a Rocky Patel Decade after a number of Rocky Patel cigars including Vintage 90/92 without any problems whatsoever. I contacted the company and they made it right.

     

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