Size: 6 x 50 “Toro”
I know I am getting old when I wake up excited because I have anticipated writing a review for a cigar. A very specific cigar: GPC 1502 Ruby. Yesterday, I reviewed the Emerald which was a mild/medium bodied, full flavored cigar. Here is a link: https://kohnhed.com/2013/04/11/cigar-review-global-premium-cigars-1502-emerald/
I loved that cigar and enjoyed the hell out of reviewing it. Today, I review the Ruby which has more body to it. And instead of a Nicaraguan wrapper, the Ruby has an Ecuadorian wrapper. That should shake things up a bit. But again, the guts of the cigar are Nicaraguan.
The origin of the name, 1502, comes from the owner Enrique Sanchez Icaza’s waist size.
No. Not really. It was the year that a white guy discovered Nicaragua. You can read all about it on the 1502 web site: http://globalpremiumcigars.com/about.html
Enrique was kind enough to provide me with two shapes. I did the torpedo yesterday so I think the toro is appropriate for today.
The classy red and gold band really accentuates the Colorado color of the wrapper by making it seem to have a very intense reddish hue…as most Ecuadorians do.
Construction is beautiful. It is box pressed with a partially closed foot. Seams are tight and the veins are infinitesimal. There is a nice oiliness to the wrapper with a bit of tooth.
I do the sniff and come up with spice, rich earthiness, nuts, cedar, and something very intense at the foot I can’t put my finger on but is very familiar. Hopefully, it will show in the tasting arena. Wait! It’s honeysuckle. Again. Yesterday’s Emerald was dripping in a honeysuckle aroma and taste. The Ruby foot reeks of honeysuckle.
I V cut the cap and light up….
I get a blast of spice and cocoa. And a very rich sweetness that comes from honey. Smoke pours from the foot and I cannot see the laptop. The char line is perfect. The draw is perfect. The body starts off as classic medium.
The cigar drips in cocoa. Probably one of the most intense cocoa experiences in a cigar I’ve had. I like the CAO Brazilia for its intense cocoa flavor but the Ruby has it beat. So I grab a Diet Coke for my chocolate soda experience. Brings me back to my childhood when my father kept bottles of seltzer water in the garage, chocolate syrup, and vanilla ice cream. That’s what this cigar is: a chocolate soda…well…that’s not all it is, but that part of it is very intense.
The Ruby is completely different than the Emerald. Both are flavor bombs but the Emerald attacks you from the flank. The Emerald had more citrusy flavor and more coffee and the spiciness didn’t show up til the end of the first third and kept in the background. The Ruby is a frontal assault. It lets loose with its Howitzers and keeps on pumping.
Before I even hit the 1” mark, the cigar is spewing out flavors like a candy machine.
The sweetness is sexy. It is honeysuckle time. The honey weaves itself around the flavors of cocoa, spice and cedar. And as I write this, the chocolate soda turns into a chocolate malted milk. Remember the malted milk balls we bought at the theater? That’s the flavor I am experiencing now.
The flavor is smooth. The medium body is as smooth as my tushy.
The first third comes to an end. The spiciness has moved to a tart red pepper that numbs my tongue and makes my eyes water and my nose run. Kleenex is nearby. LOL.
The sweetness picks up a fruity note. Yesterday, it was apricot on the Emerald. Today, it is like a Morello cherry bathed in liqueur.
The char line begins to get a little erratic. I betcha’ it will correct itself.
I make it to the halfway mark and the cigar reminds me of another cigar. The Viaje Oro. But of course, the Oro doesn’t have the honey or cherry. But similar all the same. The Oro is a Nicaraguan puro. I love the Oro and always have them in stock at home. Although, to be honest, I like the Ruby better. Because of the honey and the cherry. And the price point of the Ruby is considerably less than the Oro. Making this a real temptation. I found an online cigar store that sells this line: http://www.cigarboxpa.com/1502-cigars-by-emilio. You can purchase the whole line in boxes or 5 packs.
The body is moving fast now. It has left the confines of medium and moved much closer to full bodied. I like that.
The second half is awash in flavor. Creaminess shows up and the cocoa and other flavors expand to meet the added flavor. Damn. This is a good cigar. My friend, Luis Alvarado, put Enrique and I together. Man, I am glad for that moment of kismet.
Oddly, I taste no coffee which is usually associated with Nic cigars. The cocoa’s strength probably doesn’t allow for that to show. I still have another half to go and I am loving this cigar. My wife will kill me for buying more cigars, but after I finish this review, I am going to buy all 3 blends of the 1502 from that online web site. I almost did it yesterday but I wanted to make sure the excellence of the Emerald wasn’t a fluke. And it ain’t. Enrique told me in an email that these cigars are “ exquisite.” And he was dead on.
The power is moving quickly now and I slow down. I don’t want the nic spins with a couple inches to go. It is at this point, the cigar seeks out some complexity. Everything tamps down a bit and becomes a swirling arena of flavors. They are all on the same playing field…no flavor is stronger than the others. The spice is still on Kleenex mode.
I enter the last third and I am proven wrong. Coffee arrives on the scene. With the arrival of the creaminess, the coffee flavor is brought out. Now the cigar is mucho well balanced with a very long finish.
The rich earthiness also ramps up. I said in the Emerald review that I can almost taste the Nicaraguan earth the cigar was grown in. I can say the same thing here. We are now at full bodied. And I am a little light headed. The dog is asleep on the couch so I don’t want to wake her to make her dance with me in the living room. Nicotine makes me do that. Don’t notify PETA.
Methinks that I will smoke my last Ruby sometime today.
The third finishes out in a flourish of flavors. Normally, this cigar would go for $9 if it had a big time brand name associated with it. But Enrique has done the cigar smoking public a big favor by keeping the price point of $6. Much more accessible.
Overall, I’d say this cigar is a winner in all categories. It has a wonderful character. And flavor is catered to from the first puff. I just noticed that the online store carrying these cigars is out of the Ruby toro 5 packs. It still has the torpedo 5 pack. But I would highly recommend buying the 12 stick sampler of all three cigars: http://www.cigarboxpa.com/15-cigars-by-emilio/1502-toro-sampler-emeral-ruby-black-and-gold
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS