I didn’t really keep up to date this year with what was new and being introduced at the trade show this year by a few manufacturers. I chose to wait for them to appear in my local cigar shops and be surprised. Not knowing is better most of the time, and as a person who lacks patience it is better to just seem them as they appear. One of the cigars was the Vintage 2003 Cameroon by Rocky Patel which appeared at Cigar Inn this past week. According the The Cigar Feed, the stick is made at the General Factory in Honduras.
The Cameroon is offered as a Robusto (5.5 x 50 – $7.55); Toro (6.5 x 52 – ); Torpedo (6.25 x 52- ); Churchill (7 x 48 – $8.55) and a Sixty (6 x 60- $8.55). According to Atlantic Cigar who is an advertiser on this site,
The Rocky Patel Vintage 2003 blend has been in the works for many years now. Rocky has always wanted to use a Cameroon wrapper on one of his cigars lines… so here it is. For nearly the last decade Rocky Patel has been carefully selecting and amassing only the finest grade ‘A’ Cameroon wrapper leaf in hopes of one day launching a Cameroon wrapper cigar. The result is a sweet and spicy medium bodied cigar that’s well balanced and delivers a refined clean flavor and smoothness. The blend is comprised of a Nicaraguan binder and Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers finished in the finest Cameroon wrapper that Rocky could get his hands on.
Cigar: Rocky Patel Vintage 2003 Cameroon
Size: 5.5 x 50 (Robusto)
Filler: Dominican Republic & Nicaragua
Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
Appearance and Construction: The Cameroon wrapper of the Vintage 2003 is glistening with essential oils. Upon close examination there are some imperfections in the wrapper with some color discrepancies especially near the cap of the cigar that I would compare to the bruising of some fruit. The cigar is rolled to perfection and in the hand it feels a very smooth like enamel. There is a hefty weight to cigar and examination of the foot shows a nice variation tobacco in the filler. The dual band is a gorgeous royal blue with white text. The first denotes Rocky Patel while the second denotes Vintage 2003 Cameroon.
Flavor & Notes: The foot of the cigar has a nose of wheat and cookies baking at Christmas time. The cold draw is sweet, but it reminds of holiday cookies as well. I love when I get a cigar that triggers such a vivid image such as this. I used my Xikar soft flame lighter to spark the Vintage 2003 Cameroon up and was treated to notes of caramel sweetness which makes sense since Christmas cookies use caramel coloring. As we worked into the first third of the cigar some notes of wood began to develop, but the aroma is what really held my attention. Not to be a dead horse, but it reminded of the kitchen when my friends mom was baking, your guessed it, Christmas cookies. In the second third of the cigar the caramel was the primary note, however in the background there was some coffee and leather added to the mix. The last third of the cigar there is an aroma that is nutty that compliments the cigar which has developed a nice vanilla bean note. The finish was a little short with a nice sweetness about it.
Smoking Characteristics: What a great ash on the Rocky Patel Vintage 2003 Cameroon, it held on for half the stick at a time, which was pretty damn impressive. The burn was iconic, and the draw was perfect. Just a really well constructed cigar, one of the best I ever had the joy of smoking. As stated in the last section the aroma of the cigar was even more delicious than the smoke itself. It complimented things so well and really filled the room.
Conclusion: I was really impressed with the Rocky Patel Vintage 2003 Cameroon to the point where I might call it the best Cameroon I ever smoked. There was a nice subtle complexity to it and the cigar performed well. The price is right, and it has sparked a renewed interest to me in the brand.
Price: $134.95 / Box of 20 or $6.80 a stick at Atlantic Cigar
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