Line: Royal Challenge
Size: 6″ X 50
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade
Machine or Hand-rolled: Hand-rolled
Age: 1 Year
Price: $5.15 USD
Where to Purchase: Atlantic Cigar Co.
Right out of the package the cigar had a very floral, almost potpourri, scent to it which was very reminiscent of a english-aromatic pipe mixture. The seems, although tight, were definitely visible; while the texture of the wrapper was a beautiful soft satin. I cut the first of the double-cap off with my guillotine table cutter, and the draw was perfect. I have learned long ago the Gurkhas are hit-or-miss in every category of cigar reviews. The best way to go about smoking Gurkhas is to have no expectations, that was your only options are being happily surprised, or neutral. I toasted and lit the foot with my Dupont torch and the initial notes were of a generic flavourless smoke, with some hints of incense on the finish which were not the most pleasant
First Third (1/3) – 20 min
Although the taste of potpourri lasted though the first half of this third it, to my happiness, mellowed away. A dry wood and hazelnut profile became more dominant, but the flavours overall where quite mellow and seemed to be simply supplements to the initial general smokiness. Not a bad third for the cigar, but also nothing worth going head over heels for.
Second Third (2/3) – 25 min
There wasn’t much to comment on this third. The general smokiness was all there was in the ‘flavour’ profile. Aside from that draw, construction and ash remain optimal, yet the flavours were hardly on par.
Final Third (3/3) – 35 min
Construction and draw remained great thought this third, and surprisingly the smoke did not get hot as the burn reached the last inch. Flavours, however, like the previous two-thirds, did not jump out as something worth noting.
Total Smoke Time: 1h 20min
The Gurkha Royal Challenge is a well constructed and performing cigar. However, unfortunately, the flavors that the stick outputs is not nearly up to the same standards as its physical foundation. Once again, another Gurkha bust.
By: Steven Umbrello – Senior Editor