Temptingly Dark, Like Satan’s Soul (Soledad Churchill)

Soledad Maduro Churchill cigar on a handmade blue ashtray, crossed by a sabre-shaped cedar spill. Coffee cup in the background - text: "I like my coffee like I like my fantasy; Dark and Wyrd right up to the end."
Photo by Sable Aradia. Copyright (c) 2019 by Smoking Jacket Magazine. All rights reserved.

It was time for something dark. Dark like Satan’s soul. Dark like the deepest dark of the void of space. The Soledad Churchill seemed to fit the bill. It’s a 7 inch by 48 ring gauge big boy, about as maduro as it gets. Famous Smoke tells me it’s a blend of Honduran and Nicaraguan tobaccos in a Broadleaf Maduro wrapper. They tell me it pairs well with bourbon, single malt, or IPAs.

Soledad, I am told, means “solitude” in Spanish. This seemed a good omen; I was looking for solitude in which to enjoy my cigar today.

I paired it with my beverage of choice: coffee (Sumatran blend from Starbucks half and half with 1816 tradition Nabob, which I think is an ideal blend.) Unfortunately, clipping the double cap split the tip to an almost fatal degree. I had to wrap it with a hemp rollie paper to keep it alive. Not a good beginning. Maybe I should recondition my humidor.

Its wrapper note was extremely promising, however. Earthy, with a hint of cocoa. A perfect invitation to a maduro! I lit it with a cedar spill as I settled into my bath.

Toasting the foot produced an earthy, rich-soil scent. Again, you can’t go wrong with that in a maduro. Happily I proceeded to enjoy the first draw, which was a deeply satisfying delivery of the promise of its wrapper note. Perfect! The pack was firm but with some give, and the wrap was tight. The first third was a consistent blend of soil and cocoa; just right! It lasted about 40 minutes.

I took a break to do my daily workout and came back at what the English would call tea-time. The second third added some dark coffee notes to the cocoa and soil (and I know it wasn’t my coffee; I was finished by that time.) That second third took me about the same amount of time: 40 to 45 minutes.

By the final third I was peeling the paper and the attractive dark label as I went. Now there was something distinctly spicy – white pepper, perhaps? – and a distinct cedar undertone. Really delicious! The finish was more earth and cedar with a hint of pepper, really pleasant. It took me about 45 minutes to complete.

All around, I think this is a seriously underestimated cigar. From a great promise of wrapper note to a perfect finish, this was a genuine experience, especially at its very reasonable, “everyday cigar” price.

I give it:

You can get them in Churchill, Toro or Robusto at Famous Smoke. The churchills will cost you $3 USD each, $6.99 USD for a five-pack, or $19.99 USD for a bundle of 20. At that price, this is a true winner in this lady’s perspective! Go out and get some while the sale lasts!

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