Alec Bradley Tempus Robolo | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Honduran ’98 Criollo
Binder: Honduran ‘98 Criollo
Filler: Honduran, Nicaraguan
Size: 4.5 x 60 “Robolo”
Body: Medium/Full
Price: $6.75 by the box


2008 was the year that the Alec Bradley Tempus was born. And in that year, Cigar Aficionado bestowed upon it a 94 rating and included the cigar in its Top 25 Cigars of the Year. Not bad for the first cigar to come out of the A/B company.

This is what CA had to say about the Tempus: “Dark and attractive with an effortless draw, this cigar produces a rich, semisweet smoke, leaving balanced impressions of wood and nuts. Big, delicious flavor.”

The word Tempus means “Time” in Latin. You Catholics should know this. My wife, the Catholic, knew this immediately. Of course, growing up in Fulda, Germany, she was forced to go to Catholic school. You think the stories about the American nuns are horrifying. Imagine that same thing…but in Germany in the 1950’s-1960’s. The nuns wore jack boots.

It took eight years for A/B to develop the Tempus.
The Robolo size was made for solely. No one else carries this size. Now I am a fan of A/B cigars, just not the 60 ring gauge sticks. So when Jason Harding of BCP proposed this blend, I was hesitant but trusted his judgment.

I received the cigars two days ago. I dry boxed the samples for 24 hours and then I lost all my meager discipline and lit one up. Excellent cigar. And I was shocked that it was a flavor bomb so soon and with the big ring gauge.

I know “Nub” promotes that their squat size gets you to the sweet spot immediately; I’ve found that it is only true on some of their blends and not all of their sizes.
The 4.5 x 60 is the most popular of the Nub series.

I’m getting ahead of myself.

The Robolo has a rustic look with loads of veins; big and small. But the seams are totally invisible. I cannot find a single one. The cap looks like it is at least a double cap but the feathering of the caps to the body is so seamless it is very difficult to tell.
The stick has a nice amount of oily sheen. And a slight bit of tooth.

The main cigar band is a piece of art. Just like their new Raices Cubanas 1941. Which I just reviewed. I flattened out a band overnight so I could get a nice photo of it. The foot band is black and gold with the singular word Tempus on it.

I clip the cap and find aromas of spice, espresso, (Double sneeze from the spice), white wine like a Riesling, and a very fruity aroma that contains melon, berry, and citrus.
Time to light up.

The first puffs send smoke everywhere and it blinds me while typing. The draw is obviously perfect. Following that smoke screen I get a blast of red pepper that makes me sneeze once more. Am I becoming allergic to cigar tobacco?

More flavors pile on. It is very toasty with a buttery smooth element. Creaminess arrives tout suite. It has a deep, rich earthiness. There is dark chocolate flavor that is akin to the most expensive artisan chocolate truffles. And it isn’t done. I get a strong espresso component. Mind you, this is all happening in the first half inch. And after only 2 days out of its cello and shrink wrap. Unbelievable.

A dollop of sweetness joins the fray to smooth the dark bitter components of the chocolate and espresso.

This is the very first 60 ring gauge or nub sized cigar I’ve smoked that gave me everything I want in a cigar. How this could be a flavor bomb in the first half inch and after two days off the brown truck flummoxes me.

At the 1” mark, I get some sweet and smoky cedar.

The body started off at classic medium. I got so caught up in the flavor profile that I forgot to mention this. The draw continues to be perfect and my eyes are constantly watering from the deluge of smoke.

I have reviewed the regular Tempus a couple of times over the years depending on the online store that commissioned me to do so. I re-read them. And then I read some regular Tempus reviews by the other guys. Not one of them reports the fantastic experience I am having. Apparently, the Robolo is the ultimate fighting cigar for this blend.

The burn is going awry. I am forced to correct it. Done.

Close to the 2” point, the cigar finds its complexity. Flavors are more indigenous to the cigar itself. In other words, to use an old Hippie term, they are one. Or was that from the David Carradine show, “Kung Fu?”

The flavors at this point, in descending order are: Earthiness, chocolate, creaminess, espresso, spice, fruit, sweetness, bitterness, and cedar. The bitterness is a result of the dark cocoa and espresso flavors. A small amount of leather shows up now. It tastes like all those flavors are rolled into one piece of an exotic candy ball and are rolling around in my mouth….constantly changing how my palate receives them. Can you imagine what this cigar will taste like in a few months?

The strength is still medium bodied…or maybe a tick higher. My wife is sitting in the living room and doing her crosswords from the daily newspaper when she gets up and opens a couple of windows in our bay window. The smoke is filling the whole place.

At the halfway point, it is chooglin’. Nothing has changed. No diminishing of any flavor and no addition of flavors. It is telling me that it is perfect now so enjoy me.

A floral flavor becomes the latest addition with just 1.5” to go. The strength is moving towards full bodied. The spice returns and clears my sinuses. And that ball of flavors becomes intense with character and depth.

I’ve been smoking this cigar for a good hour.

As the cigar nears the end, the spice becomes very strong. The cocoa, creaminess, espresso and sweetness are the front runners. Then just before I put it down, the creaminess goes nuts and pushes to the front of the line.

I would not normally buy a cigar this size but then Jason is smarter than me and based upon all the cigars he has sent me, knows what I like. So Jason is the parent and I am the petulant child.

The price point is right on the money for this much quality. I would have expected this stick to be in the $8-$9 range if I blind tasted it.
You have to try this cigar. If you are a fan of the Tempus, it will spoil you and you probably won’t go back to the regular sizes.

Here is the Tempus page on BCP.
Thanks again Jason for being such a smart cookie.


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1 reply

  1. Great review Phil, I love the AB Tempus and only have two left ( damn ) a Natural and a Maduro both in the Medius size. I will definitely have to try the Robolo to compare.

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