It’s Stog o’Clock! This go around, we have the Gurkha Cellar Reserve in the Solara size. This 5×58 stick advertises Dominican filler aged for 15 years with a Dominican, olor binder and a Criollo 1998 wrapper. It’s a very oily cigar with a fancy pigtail cap and an elegant band. There is a potent barnyard and tobacco aroma coming off of the wrapper with a slight musty smell out of the foot.
The first light hits me with a nice sweetness and an earthy wood flavor. Through the nose, there is a slight black pepper spice with a hint of maple syrup. The finish is long with spice and leather.
After one half hour, I finish the first third. The burn is poor with flaky ash. The draw gives me a sour yet sweet flavor with some char. Through the nose, I pick up spicy leather. The finish gives me a strong floral note with some oak. Strength is steadily at the medium mark.
The second third puts me at one hour. The burn continues to be problematic. I pick up a very tangy leather flavor with ramped up spice on the draw. There is a wonderful creamy toast note on the retro-hale. The long finish continues to be floral with an increase in black pepper. There is no change in strength.
The final third puts me at one hour and forty-five minutes with a very slow burn for the size of the cigar. The draw gives me bitter spice alongside some oak. Wood overwhelms my nose with sweet cedar. The finish kicks me in the mouth with an unpleasant char flavor that I could go without as well as a general smokiness and slight black pepper. Strength and body finish out at the medium mark.
For the price, I can’t recommend this cigar. If my memory serves me right, I paid somewhere in the $12-15 range. It wasn’t a bad smoke, but it wasn’t great, either. It just ends up being an okay cigar. Although I am willing to give any cigar manufacturer another try, I have consistently found that the cigars I’ve tried from Gurkha are just average, and that’s after smoking over 30 of their blends. I’ve never been completely blown away by any of their sticks, but I would love for that to change. This was a great looking stick with some enjoyable flavors, and it would be highly recommended at the $3-5 range, but this one isn’t the game-changer. Sorry, Gurkha, this just doesn’t do it for me. Next, please!
Until next time, stog-away!