Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped | Cigar Reviews by the Katman

Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corojo ‘99
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo ‘99
Filler: Nicaraguan Corojo ’99, Criollo ‘98
Size: 6 x 44
Strength: Medium
Price: $8.00

Today we take a look at the Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped.
Thanks to Tyler Jeffery at Havana Lounge and Cigar for the stick.

Released August 2016
Factory: Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. (TABSA)
From Cigar Aficionado (#8 Cigar for 2017 ~ Rated 93):
“What happens when you give two young blenders unbridled access to some of the best Nicaraguan tobacco in the world? The answer is the Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped. It’s the joint effort of Max Fernández and Kyle Gellis. If you’ve never heard of them, Kyle Gellis is the owner of Warped Cigars, a small, boutique brand made in Nicaragua at the TABSA factory. Max is the son of Eduardo Fernández, owner of the TABSA factory and, more to the point, owner of Aganorsa, an agricultural conglomerate that is one of the largest growers of cigar tobacco in Nicaragua, and the source of top-quality leaf.

“Both Gellis and Fernández had a very large inventory of Aganorsa tobacco at their disposal when coming up with this concept—and they did not squander the opportunity. Guardian of the Farm is a tasty smoke that’s profoundly nutty in character, showing almond and nutmeg qualities along with hints of cinnamon. It’s long and slim and is made with an uncut foot, so the first puffs of the cigar give the smoker a bracing taste of the Corojo ’99 wrapper before the rest of the blend kicks in. Guardian of the Farm is named in honor of both Max’s and Kyle’s dogs—so they had a little fun with the name as well.”

An ordinary looking cigar…some soft spots but no serious issues with the construction. A nice triple cap applied by rollers who have their shit in one basket. The smooth as glass wrapper is the color of coffee with plenty of cream in it. It has a closed foot. Is it me or do these things always look like old vaginas?

From the shaft, I can smell lots of stuff…all types of dried fruit, red pepper, malts, coffee, cocoa, tart dried apricot stands out, cream, cedar, vanilla bean, citrus, and ginger.
From the clipped cap and the foot, I can smell strong malt followed by very potent red pepper, tart dried fruit, cream, citrus, vanilla, almonds, cedar, and ginger.
The cold draw presents flavors of chocolate, espresso, red pepper, cream, malts, citrus, and ginger.

The draw is a bit stifled by a block near the cap so out comes my PerfecDraw cigar poker and open ‘er up like my family would rip into my wallet while I was asleep.

Flavors emerge in an orderly fashion: super creamy, graham cracker, coffee, hot cocoa, malt, cedar, red pepper, citrus, vanilla, and nuts.

This stick is bangin’ right from the get go. While I’m a fan of Warped Cigars, I find they are not the most consistent brand. They can produce blends that hit the highest heights and can also deliver a blend that is dead on arrival.
A good sign when a cigar comes out swinging. Now the greatest fear I have at this early point is that this is a blend that starts out like gangbusters but then fades into oblivion by the second half. Fingers crossed.

The draw is wide open with just the slightest bit of resistance. A simply perfect flow of air…and then the cigar goes out on me.

Merely half an inch in and the Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped is beginning to blow me away with its excellent blend and know how. This is a fucking great cigar. And I’m just at the lonely start of a good time covered in floral foam and bunions.

Complexity wastes no time. Go get ‘em. Transitions are a marvel of modern day technology…actually I just added that non sequitur to make me appear as an intellectual and yet benign at the same time. (What’s this lump on my neck?)

The char line is exemplary and outstanding. Like my unbroken record of premature and sequential testicular explosions caused by a lethal entity. I divorced her in 1972.

The burn line gets wonky on me for the first time. Bad cigar. No treats for you.

Caramel joins the league of nations. The balance is the show stopper here. It’s perfect. This is the kind of thing that leaves this motor mouth speechless. It forces real introspection on the mystical wonder of a seasoned blender(s) that does great things; instead of using their time getting Xikar cutters with their logo on it.

While $8 was at one time an expensive cigar, it finds itself in the reasonable locale of affordable. I don’t need no stinkin’ $25 cigar. This little knobby kneed bugger is taking the pie eating contest prize home to mama.

Last night, I taped the AXSTV concert of Van Morrison. Must have been recorded in 2018 or 2017 at the latest. Van the Man goes all the way and pushes forward on his career in this special. He becomes a jazz singer in the vein of the original Ocean’s 11. He has a real 6 piece jazz band backing him and they all take long extended solos. If you can find it, watch it. It’s stunning.

Smoke time has been a pleasure infatuated 25 minutes.
Have I mentioned strength? Nope. A very middle of the road medium blowing steam and staying on course.
It is an avalanche of sweet spots coming at my puss like being the target of a paint ball assault. Complexity is through the roof. Transitions put a stupid grin on my face. The finish is leisurely but intense.

I love this cigar. I’m repeating myself now…not a good sign…impending stroke on the horizon. (I prefer the breast stroke).

Listing flavors is now irrelevant. You’ve read my earlier descriptions and they still hold true. But the intertwining of these tasty elements is like a thousand strands of DNA morphing and twisting together….destiny unknown.

Despite all of us having different palates, there are some blends that feed the people. No matter your tastes, you will love the Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped. It is a solid investment of your hard earned dough. Buy several boxes and then send them to me…you can keep a fiver.

A new component washes ashore…a blistering double base hit with a gorgeous floral aroma accompanied by the flavor of roses (Use your imagination). It’s like huffing on your wife’s neck after she adorns the Walgreen’s generic perfume you bought for her birthday.

Sweet things: Graham cracker, sweet cream, candied citrus, sweet tea, chocolate covered dried ginger, and a vanilla milk shake.
Savory things: Salted nuts, a light smokiness, horseradish, curry, and lemongrass.

I read a couple reviews. Some were harsh. Odd how that happens. And then I come along and completely disagree. I find some reviewers are too stingy with their praise and ratings. They’ve become spoiled due to an abundance of access to a huge variety of new cigars…But then I’ve not been given admission to the big boy’s table so I don’t get all the good stuff coming out in record numbers. Many reviewers tell manufacturers…”Sure. Go ahead and send me a 5 pack but that doesn’t mean it’s a guarantee it will be reviewed.” Bet you didn’t know that. So how do I get on that list to get all those new $14 cigars that only a few of us can afford? Every time I see a 5 pack going for $75-$80, I gotta laugh. In my next life, I will be rich and good looking…actually, I’ll settle for just being rich…then you don’t need to be good looking.

The halfway point arrives at 45 minutes.
The Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped is screaming laughter.
Strength is a touch over medium now.

Salty pretzels appear tipping the savory scale to its favor. Makes me hungry for a soft pretzel with mustard.
The cigar goes out again.

Lighting it back up causes an onslaught of flavors. This blend is just too big for its britches. It needs a spanking. I just have to get this red ball out of my mouth first.

Godamm the Pusherman.
After yesterday’s hit and run by the Mac Inspirado Red and its failure to impress, it is a pure joyful experience this morning…The Red review felt like I was loitering around a urinal that wouldn’t flush.

Imagine you’ve just returned from a long trip across the Syrian Desert along with T.E. Lawrence and you’re hungry. You arrive in Aqaba like a piece of wet toast. You are offered any type of meal you desire. First, you drink a lemonade. And then you say the hell with food…give me a Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped. That is what I’m talkin’ ‘bout.

Have I ever told you the story of when I was younger and played bass in a band with T.E. Lawrence? (One can’t predict flashbacks).

Smooth. Complex. Balanced.

Much more tobacco in the second half of the cigar as its progress slows down to two snails humping. Good for me. Morris Day and the Time.
Thinking I’m nuts, I go back to a couple of reviews of this blend. I’m enjoying a much better experience than they had. Different strokes…

Smoke time is one hour 10 minutes.
I can’t believe this cigar will get much better than this very moment. But then the last third can surprise you. Like when I visited Israel many years ago and took a ride to the Gaza Strip and some bad guy blew himself up in no man’s land just 100 yards from my bus. Or the time I was awakened by a grenade going off in the lobby of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. Threw me to the floor. The relationship to the last third of a cigar review? I think I need an EEG.

I’m totally relaxed. Drifting on a cloud stuffed with lox and bacon. This cigar has magical powers of healing and redemption. Acupuncture is extra.
Almost every cigar Tyler Jeffery recommended to me has been a big winner. His rep is clean and sober.

I have a few more sticks that Tyler recommended that I cannot wait to review.
This is the blend that smokers who pish posh fucks like me, because they can’t taste anything specific in a blend; will say they know what they like and will definitely appreciate the Guardian of the Farm Apollo Selección de Warped. They may not know exactly why they like this blend but who cares…this blend is stunning.
You need to heed your Uncle Katman’s advice on this one dear friends. Buy some. Let them rest for a while. I only allowed this stick a single month and it’s a killer. Warped is definitely New Breed.
Final smoke time is one hour 35 minutes.


And now for something completely different:
The Eddie Munster Chronicles 1983:
It was the day before the first shoot. I hadn’t written a script yet because Butch kept putting off getting together with me. Thank goodness because I got a hair up my ass and whipped it out in forty minutes the night before. No changes needed. 33 scenes for a 2 minute song. It sometimes amazes me how you can pull shit out of nowhere sometimes.

The first shoot was an exterior. There is a line in the song that says, “I got up and left school.” So we got the iconic auto customizer, George Barris, to loan us John Travolta’s souped up Trans Am. George insisted that he provide the driver. The scene required two shots. First was Butch running down the steps of the high school in cap and gown. And the second was the Trans Am burning rubber taking off from the school.

Our second scene for the Eddie Munster video was a completely unexpected success. I had no permit to shoot a film. And we were stopping traffic on Sunset. We fooled the cops and shot right in front of Hollywood High School. In fact, cops did drive up and urn their lights on to help us out not knowing we were shooting illegally. They were so smitten with meeting Butch that they didn’t give a shit. But that was only 2 scenes. My shooting script had 31 more scenes to go.

I scoped locations. In San Pedro, CA, there is a permanently docked tourist boat that has a couple restaurants, and a chapel on top. The Princess Louise.

There was a chapel on the top deck that would be perfect for the balance of my scenes and I made financial arrangements with the chaplain.

I gathered my crew, my extras, and the band…and we showed up at the Princess Louise around 6pm.
I was immediately met by the owner of the boat who said the chaplain had no authority to allow us to shoot. “FUCK! %#^$#%&*(*&!!!!”
$2000 please…as the owner stood next to his brand new Rolls Royce.

I drove home like a maniac while the crew was moving their gear to the chapel. I went into my safe and grabbed the dough. The owner, and his Rolls Royce, was waiting for me. I handed the money over and he left but not before I gave him the finger. Only a few of my crew knew what had happened. I couldn’t afford another disaster like the mortuary catastrophe. (Another story)

I had rented 5 outlandishly decorated caskets from Cassandra the Casket Queen in Hollywood. We were forced to hold them over our heads as we transported them upstairs to the chapel. We actually had to wind our way through a crowded restaurant to do this. Forks fell in unison.

The camera crew set up in the chapel while our make-up artist did her thing with the band members….Eddie in white; while the Monsters were in green make up. All good looking boys. In fact, one of them was Butch’s brother, Mike.

I went over the script with Marvin Rush, my cinematographer (Who went on to be one of the most sought after cinematographers in L.A. He did some Star Trek movies.)

One of his crew members voiced an opinion that it can’t be done in one night. Marvin immediately told him to shut up. He explains to the guy that Phil is the director and they will do whatever it takes to get it done.

The extras are ready. I picked regular folks. No models or pretty people.
I quickly spent a few minutes with all concerned to tell them what I needed from them.
And then I yell “Action.”

We had begun to shoot our first scene of the night. Now mind you, the song was just barely 2 minutes long and I had written 33 scenes to shoot. That meant an edit every 3.6 seconds. The same way the Bourne movies are edited. Blink and miss a scene.

The first shot was of the 50 extras dancing into the chapel while the music played. I purposely picked a huge array of types; fat women, fat men, a rainbow coalition of ethnicities, young and old, and they were all thrilled to be there and have their 15 minutes, or shall I say 7.2 seconds of fame? The longest scene of the video.

One of my friends, Ben, brought his friend, Jasper. Both were very well dressed in three piece suits. So I put them up front for two reasons….they were dressed to the nines, and could move their fat asses like no one else in the crowd.

One of the shots had the camera on them as they sang the chorus. All they had to was lip sync the title of the song. It turned out that it was the only shot of the night that required more than two takes.

Jasper, could not for the life of him, remember the words, “Whatever Happened to Eddie?” So his mouth moved in total non-unison with the song. It was driving me nuts and taking too much time.

It was the only time I acted like a prima donna during the whole project. I screamed at Jasper that is he stupid or what? It was like talking to Forrest Gump. He just couldn’t do it. He promised he would on the threat of being sent away. I had 49 other extras lip syncing perfectly and there was Jasper in the second row fucking it all up.

I didn’t want to look at the play back. I had to move on….But I heard Marvin, my camera man, laughing so I knew that Jasper had failed miserably. That was the only scene where we needed extras so, upon completion of that part of the video, I sent them home.
And then we moved on to the parts with Butch and the band.
And it got really hairy at this point….things happened…the night turned into morning and everyone was running on cocaine…..tempers were out of control….
To be continued…..


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2 replies

  1. So glad to see you’re back, Phil!

  2. Nice one , I hope the Aganorsa boys get more of their products out to you!

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