It's been a while since I've had a new cigar. I stay to my old standbys for the course and the celebration after lately - what with my new business venture starting up. This weekend, my Uncle Todd treated me to a new cigar that I haven't had before. The Gurkha Centurion. Double Perfecto roll. Dark natural connecticut wrapper. Cameroon Binder and Cuban-seed Dominican Ligero filler. Gurkha is touted as the peak of cigars lately. I respectfully disagree though they do have a number of blends that I absolutely love and will drive an hour to get. This particular blend is reported to be so exclusive that previously the only customer was the Sultan of Brunei. Yea whatever....le grand cigar, right bender?
Todd keeps his cigars well. Better than me, in fact. The first thing I noticed about this smoke is that it was a very loose roll. While it was very well made and perfectly rolled, it just was soft under my fingers and with a heavy taper, that makes it a little difficult for me to smoke. I've had some great cigars that were packed tight and still had a smooth draw and also had some loose smokes that couldn't give a vacuum cleaner a puff, so you could guess my apprehension. Still a free cigar is a free cigar!
A good sniff brought a nice aroma of tobacco, leather, and just a hint of spice. Bold aroma and a nice color to the cigar itself. It was really such a nice smell that I didn't want to light it - but hey, if I must. My 3 flame RP torch did the job perfectly. Smooth draw, thick smoke. True to the previous aroma, full flavors of leather and a touch of spice. Surprisingly most shops have this labeled as a medium cigar. I would lean that toward full/ bold but it's still in the middle of the two. The taste was really nice, if not with a soft mouthfeel, and then - what can only be described as the most awful smell I've ever experienced. Sorry Gurkha, but seriously something just wasn't right here. Generally I love the smell of cigars, even the ones that I don't like to smoke, but this was something altogether different and just plain out of this world. Perhaps it was the strength of the leaves or something in the filler - I couldn't really say, but "pungent" is not even close to the word I would use to describe it. If you could imagine lighting a leather couch on fire and putting it out with dirt and hair, that was about the smell of this cigar. It was pleasing for the first fraction of a second but became so full and filled the nostrils so fast that it made it unenjoyable. Even Todd looked at me and said "well that's not the best smell is it? Damn it tastes good though".
I concur whole-heartedly. At a price point of about $13 per cigar, it's worth it for the flavor, but smoke these things outside, in a breeze, and stay upwind. Overall it was about an hour and a half smoke. Really enjoyable smoke and the tip had a nice zing and tang of flavor that complemented well with our drinks. I would do it again in a heartbeat, but definitely not indoors or before I was headed out anywhere. Overall, I give it a solid 8/10. It's really enjoyable in the flavor department and if you like a tasty smoke without the kick in the face boldness and queasy feeling then it's really a good choice. That smell is really knocking me down though and as someone who has to go home to a wife and likes to get a head-start or finish up a smoke on the drive to and from, it's just not something I care to put up with.... though if you have any laying around that you'd like to send my way, feel free.