Every now and then it’s good to try something you’ve tried before, again. I have been saving my Holt’s Cigar Company exclusive Rocky Patel Luxury Collection Sampler’s second round of fine smokes for a few months to try a second time, and thus get a fuller picture of the collection. This time I thought I would go for a second round of the Ocean Club Box-Cut Toro.
Having recently acquired a desktop cigar cutter from Famous Smoke (and thank you very much; it was a prize that Erin won for just filling out a survey, and this time it was nothing more than happenstance – a device which I will be reviewing and instructing on using in the near future), I couldn’t wait to try it, so this time I sampled a cut that is new to me; the V cut. The cigar cut easily but cracked a little, obviously somewhat worse for wear in my humidor. My humidifier read the appropriate moisture level, but obviously it was not working properly. I’ll have to condition the box later.
After a few months in the humidor the cigar smelled of faint cedar, which differed from the original leather notes I detected the first time. The pre-light draw promised more leather notes, however. And though the head flaked when I lit the cigar carefully from my cedar spills from Cigar Reserve, I found that the flavour benefited from the aging. I recall that I described it as having leather and cucumber elements with a faint iron undertone that reminded me a little of Cuban terroire and cigarette tobacco. The cucumber had somewhat faded, but the iron taste had mellowed until any suggestion of cigarette tobacco was completely banished. It was also considerably more “buttery,” likely because the oils have had time to permeate and perhaps evaporate a little into the wrapper. Delicious!
As the first third progressed, I noticed a nutmeg room note that I had not noticed in my previous acquaintance with this cigar, which soon started to permeate the flavours as well. This was about ten to fifteen minutes in. Very nice; quite soothing on a cold November day.
About half an hour in, however, it went out; which I will now take to be a construction issue that affects the first third of the cigar or so, since this time I was smoking at an entirely different rate with an entirely different cut. Unfortunate, that. I clipped it (again easily, and this time with no cracking) and re-lit about twenty minutes after that, taking some time to eat first.
Once again the cigar proved a pleasant spice undertone, this time more identifiable as nutmeg, which I quite enjoyed. It smoked deliciously and easily, minus the minor annoyance of a flap of wrapper coming loose; but once again I had to relight it. I wasn’t too concerned at this point, since I’d been smoking steadily and without interruption with a delightfully cold smoke as I worked on my writing for about 45 minutes.
It went out once more in the final third, showing a surprising oak flavour that I had never noticed before, and a delicious touch of white pepper, which I had. When I re-lit it after that, however, it tasted generally burnt out by comparison to the flavours I had previously enjoyed, so I called it done with twenty further minutes of smoking time.
Yep; really good, just like the last time, but improved by age. This round of the Ocean Club I’ll have to rate at:
You can get the Ocean Club Toro at the Holt Cigar Company, to which it might be exclusive since I couldn’t find it anywhere else online, for $8.55 USD for a single or about $120 for a box of twenty; or as part of the Holt Cigar Company’s Rocky Patel Luxury Sampler, as I did.