Wrapper: Dominican Criollo
Size: 6 x 60
Today we take a look at the Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company.
Normally, I’m not a fan of mild bodied cigars. This will be my first Gunslinger High Plains. Based on what I’ve smoked, and enjoyed, from Outlaw Cigar, I have no doubt that this will be a very flavorful cigar.
(Maybe you’ve noticed but the Outlaw Cigar web site is a little wonky. I tried to access it and all I got was an “Error” page.)
I had a nice conversation with Kendall Culbertson, owner and blender, of The Outlaw Cigar Company.
He worked with Jochy Blanco (Cousin to José Blanco) on the Gunslinger High Plains blend. Jochy is an interesting man:
“Since the early 80’s Jochy has endured hard work to improve the family industry, developing Tabacalera Palma from producing cigars exclusively for the local market, to exporting them worldwide. In the midst of 1995, “Jochy” moves the factory facilities to a free trade zone park he founded called ‘La Palma’, located in the northern part of the country: Tamboril, out skirting Santiago, the second highest populated city of the Dominican Republic.
“Nowadays Tabacalera Palma is a vibrant enterprise with a positive impact to the community. Not only does the company contribute with the direct employment of more than 300 citizens, more than 70% of them being women, and indirectly employing more than 500, but by numerous factors such as its support to many existing charities like the Firemen Patronage, the Orphanage of Tamboril, several sports organizations, among others.
“Jochy devotes unconditional support towards small independent growers in the communities where Tabacalera Palma operates, as well as portraying a partnership in the state of the art tobacco farm “Estancia Flor de Palma” with the world-renowned cigar maker Litto Gomez from La Flor Dominicana.
“Ever since Mr. Blanco assumed the role of CEO in Tabacalera Palma, the company has developed numerous private labels for many of the leading cigar companies in the world. Additionally, it has improved tobacco growing, harvesting, curing and processing techniques, ideal factors that complement the high rankings of the Aging Room brand, one of the highest ever for a debuting cigar line.”
Now about Kendall…..Culbertson spent 2-1/2 to 3 years just studying tobacco. Not blending.
He spent several years studying cigar tobacco. He was tutored by some of the most influential blenders from Cuba.
He visited most of the factories in Central America. He studied with Arsenio Ramos. As well as Eduardo Fernández..the king of AGANORSA tobacco. Which, by the way, is an acronym for “Agricola Ganadera Norteña S.A.” Fernández created it in 1997. And it used by many of the most famous cigar blenders that we all know and love.
Fernández is owner of Casa Fernández. One of the most esteemed farms and factories in the world.
Culbertson, by the way, blended the Xikar Habano2.
Culbertson lives in Kansas City, MO where his secondary store is. The walk in humidor is 600 square feet. The larger store, in Overland, KS, has the largest, 1500 square foot walk in humidor in the country. Both stores are pure heaven for serious smokers with lounges, bars, poker rooms, etc.
It was because of his stalwart passion for cigars, and what he had accomplished, that all of the big blenders agreed to work with him.
There is a great article called “The Aganorsa Enigma” in the April/March 2012 Cigar Aficionado. You should read it.
This is a beautiful, oily, mottled, coffee bean colored cigar that shimmers in the light. It seems to change colors as you rotate it in your hand. There are notes of honeycomb in the light.
It is packed solid but with some nice give to it. The seams are invisible. Lots of spider veins. A flawless, flat triple cap.
SIZES AND PRICING:
See chart below:
AROMAS AND COLD DRAW NOTES:
The shaft presents aromas of rich earthiness, sweetness, honey, spice, coffee, cedar, and some nice floral notes.
From the clipped cap and foot, there are aromas of rich dark chocolate, coffee, spice, sweetness, leather, and earthy tobacco.
The cold draw presents flavors of dark, and milk, chocolate. Loads of creaminess, sweetness, licorice, cedar, earthy tobacco, and leather.
As most readers know, I’m not into 60 ring, or bigger, gauge cigars. It’s not a big deal when I am relaxing and smoking. But I hold the cigar between my lips when I review and a 60 is just too big for gentile, delicate lips. Wait. Gentile lips? That can’t be right. But I will do my best and not allow the cigar fall too many times on to my laptop keyboard sending shards of burning tobacco into the crotch of my boxer shorts. Yes ladies and germs; I sit here in my boxers, Tee and light robe while I write. Try to get the picture of a 65 year old fart barely dressed out of your mind while you read this.
Strength is mild body.
There are very interesting flavors of wood, and cedar, working alongside each other. There are flavors of: Sweetness, cream, red hot pepper, chocolate, coffee, nuts, pie crust, leather, very earthy tobacco, and an undetermined malt element.
This is a very good start. One thing I can count on with any Outlaw Cigar is a good start. So far, the three reviews I’ve done have proven that: Gunslinger Black Powder, WTF Maduro, and Gunslinger Drifter are all killer cigars. In talking to Kendall, I could sense his passion and that he wasn’t bullshitting me about his experience and dedication to the leaf. The proof is in the pudding; or in this case: The Outlaw Cigar Company line of cigars.
The Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company is so oily that it keeps slipping from between my lips. Never had that happen.
A minor touch up is needed. For me, it is very important as to which lighter to use to fix the char line. I only use a single torch flame at medium height. Gives me control and I don’t char an inch of wrapper.
This cigar is a slow roll. 1-1/4” burned. Smoke time = 22 minutes.
Strength is mild/medium body.
New flavors appear: Toffee, Malt (Coffee Malt and Munich Malt –See Malt Chart), and graham cracker. And the creaminess has a Suzy Cream Cheese flavor.
I’m sure you’ve noticed that I got a new red ashtray as a gift. It is wonderful for reflecting light back on to the wrapper. Really shows off the detail. I like it.
I’m having a bad week as you could tell in yesterday’s review (Oceano by La Sirena). I went back and fixed things. This is such a frustrating thing that this illness is doing to my brain. Of course, some of you are probably thinking, “What are you talking about? Same crap as you usually write.” LOL.
Sweet Spot 1.0. Peanut butter! But no jam. I swear this blend has all the makings of a chocolate, coffee laced, peanut butter cheesecake. I am the King, or Queen, of making sugar free cheesecakes. No sugar but all the fat and calories. The High Plains is causing me crave one of my creations. Charlotte, who loves sugar, loves my sugar free cheesecakes. It is the only time I bake.
We got a horrific thunderstorm yesterday and last night. And me, the schmuck, dry boxed this cigar for 24 hours. There was more humidity in the air than in my humidor. Bad move on my part as I have a slightly swollen spot on the cigar from too much moisture.
Here they are once again: Creaminess, spice, chocolate, coffee, peanut butter, graham cracker, malt x 2, cedar, leather, extremely rich tobacco earthiness, and leather..with just a touch of black licorice.
Strength is medium body. Huzzah!
Smoke time is 45 minutes.
The creaminess soars. Definitely cheesecake.
The Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company has some real complexity now. Balance is good. And a long chewy finish.
How I missed out on Outlaw Cigar this long is a mystery to me. Thank God Kendall is susceptible to begging. I did a lot of it. Most manufacturers think I’m a miscreant dangling in the stratosphere. They don’t get that I have a massive audience. I tell them this and I guess they don’t believe me. Who the hell would read this guy? You do, dear readers. You put up with my foolishness and you are very smart. I am a bad habit in your life.
Reflexes are still good. The cigar slipped out of my mouth and I caught it with my left hand before it fell 8”. I coulda’ been a contender.
Really packed cigar without a single draw issue. My kind of cigar. Kudos to Kendall and Jochy.
The crack is nearly burned through. I rotated the double cigar bands so you wouldn’t see it. Not fair to Kendall. This was my fault for letting it dry box in 90% humidity. What a shlub.
Damn. Like a light switch.
Sweet Spot 2.0. Now it’s a Flavor Bomb!
A real flavor explosion. Newbies, and experienced palates alike, will love this cigar. I’m a real snob when it comes to mild bodied cigars. And once again, I’m put in my place.
New malt flavors are added: Flaked Oats, Chocolate Wheat Malt, and Cara Vienna (See Malt Chart).
All these years and I had no idea what an important part that malt has in the flavor of a cigar. Now, of course, I’m not suggesting that malt is introduced into the blend. But, rather, the malt flavors are brought out by the blend. This has been the “It Factor” I’ve struggled with for ages. Just goes to show that dementia ain’t all that bad.
I suggest you bookmark the list of malts or print it out so that the next time you smoke a good cigar, you can track down the specific malt flavor.
I want to thank Bob Buschbom for the wonderful gift of cigars he sent to me. The photo below is just a small sampling of his kindness. You, sir, are a mensch!
Back to the Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company.
What really kills me is that this man, Kendall Culbertson, has put his heart and soul into putting out double digit blends and he keeps his price points affordable and wallet friendly for the quality. All of his blends are high premium sticks.
The High Plains is a warm, cozy blend. I will tell you right now that it is a cigar you have to try. I need to convince Kendall to supply a discount code for my readers. In the meantime, the price point is well below market value. An $8 cigar should be going for $14 in this post 2015 IPCPR market.
If you visit the Outlaw Cigar Company web site, you can buy singles or boxes. No five packs or samplers. I need to talk to Kendall about this. A big sampler would be spot on.
Nothing makes me happier than to rant on and on about a great cigar. I have other cigars to review but my heart is telling me to review one of the three I have left: Perdition, Unforgiven, or Hangman.
The Outlaw Cigar Company’s blends are as good as any other brand out there. Really.
Smoke time is one hour 5 minutes.
Usually, by now I am pissing and moaning about being bored or some such thing. Not with the Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company. Fun, fun, fun cigar til your daddy takes your Mustang away.
Like a spinning disco ball, the transitions come fast and furious. Nothing lingers for more than a few seconds before it moves on to the next dominant flavor.
Strength is a solid medium body. Nicotine rears its head.
The secondary cigar band comes off without a hitch. Now I know this means nothing to you. But I like pretty photos.
The creaminess and graham cracker are soaring. The coffee and chocolate are mind bending. The malt components are flying like a goose back to Canada. I have no idea what that means.
The spiciness comes and goes. One moment is in the middle of the pack; the next it is running the show.
This is anything but a boring blend. I was worried that this might be my first hyper critical review of an Outlaw cigar. Because it is mild bodied to start. Man, was I climbing up the wrong Yucca tree.
I’m trying to keep the word count low enough so you don’t nod off but it is difficult when smoking and writing simultaneously.
Smoke time is one hour 30 minutes.
A side note on the progress of my Cigar Oasis Excel humidifier/hygrometer. This is the best thing since sliced bread. I bought a premium Zederkoff hygrometer that puts to shame any other digital hygrometer I’ve ever owned. And the reading on the Excel and the Zederkoff are never more than .2% different. That’s incredible. On the Cigar Oasis web site, it goes for $119 for a 300 count humidor. But if you go to CI or any other online store, they go for around $80. This is the most trouble free humidification system I’ve owned. If I had more cigars, I’d buy more Excels. Save up your dough and get one and tell me I’m wrong. But you gotta get the Zederkoff as well. And throw away your crap digital hygrometers.
Back to the Gunslinger High Plains by The Outlaw Cigar Company. Pure heaven. I can’t wait to rate it.
This has been the slowest burning Gordo I’ve smoked. With 1-1/2” to go, smoke time is over two hours.
OK. Time to rate it. 93 is my score.
Remember, rating is subjective. Every palate is as different as there are people on the planet. I don’t use any format. It is a gut instinct.
A price range of $6.00-$8.00 is ridiculously crazy. I’m smoking the biggest and most expensive cigar. I’d love to try them all in Robustos or Corona Gordas.
I’m not kidding when I say this blend could have easily been serious double digits. This is where Kendall’s close relationship with the factories all over Central America comes in. He is getting great deals on production and tobacco costs. And instead of being a greedy SOB, he is passing on the savings to you. Brava!
This was an incredible cigar experience. A major flavor bomb. A nice medium body from the halfway point on.
If I can manage to borrow Katie’s car, I’m off to the market to buy the fixin’s for a cheesecake. I’m jonesing for one now.
My list of regular production cigars should have this one on the top of the list.
It is the perfect cigar for newbies to learn about their palate. And experienced smokers will have a field day.
Make sure you tell Kendall the Katman sent you.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS