Privada Cigar Club | Cigar Reviews by the Katman

In 10 years, I’ve never promoted a single cigar of the month club. For me, they have all been overpriced. Plus, I didn’t get cigars I really want or ones that surprise me.

And then I joined the Privada Cigar Club…thanks to Brian Desind, owner and king of Sherman Oaks, California. I fell in love with Brian immediately when he told me of his days in rock n roll. A kinsman. Brian is also the Godfather of the Gambino Crime Family…but just on the weekends.

For only $25.99 plus $3 shipping, you get 3 rare, vintage, limited edition, well-aged sticks. Most no longer available. My first box also included a fourth unbanded mystery cigar that Privada asks you to review briefly. If you use the magic word, Brian gives you an unpaid 4 nights, 7 day vacation on a Ukraine war ship. You can purchase your Kevlar from Fingerhut.

At the end of this promotional article, I am going to review the Room101 Daruma LTD Mutante Lancero with 6 years of age on it. Brian had to put Matt Booth in a discarded oil barrel and launch him to sea in order to get these cigars. Booth is now the Dread Pirate Roberts. Which I guess makes me Wallace Shawn…
Read on…

From the Privada Cigar Club web site:
“World famous Privada Cigar Club. Like a surprise birthday gift every month. Ask any of our members and they will tell you, the best day of each month is the day they receive their Privada box.

“Members are treated to a curated selection of 3 rare, aged, limited edition or new and noteworthy cigars each month. Each box comes with a review of the cigars, pairing notes and tasting notes, all perfectly humidified in a Boveda certified pouch, ready to smoke.”

What We Send
“You’re gonna love it! Each month we hunt, gather, age and humidify all the rarest, and limited-edition cigars we can find so that you don’t have to. You will receive some of the newest and noteworthy cigars on the market before your local stores and in sizes they won’t have unavailable. Like exclusive cigars? We have them! Like things they don’t even make anymore? You’ll get them.

“Each month is a trifecta of aged, rare and dead stock cigars that come with a write up you can read while smoking to help you pick out the tasting notes and pair with the right refreshments and foods. Best part about the club is that the more our membership grows, the more exclusive the content of our boxes will become. So, it just keeps getting better. Finally, the gift that doesn’t stop giving.”

Cigar vixen YouTube video of her unboxing her monthly package.

Since discovering this cigar club, I’ve been in contact with so many smokers who are members and rave about the sticks they receive.
And here is the test…I’m going to nearly blind review a cigar I’ve not smoked before.

My review of the 2012 Room101 Daruma Mutante Lancero.
Cigars Released: 1,000 Boxes (20 Cigars)
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Brazilian Mata Fina
Filler: Dominican, Honduran
Size: 7 x 38 Lancero
Strength: Medium+
Price: $10.00 for current Darumas ($8.00 in 2012)

I don’t know if the cigar is going to hold up with so many years of age. The stick has soft and hard spots. Due to its tiny ring gauge, using my PerfecDraw cigar poker tool; if needed, could end in disaster. Fingers crossed it provides a decent draw.

Aromas from the wrapper elicit notes of chocolate, caramel, espresso, fruit, malt, dark tea, lemon zest, and white pepper.
The cap has a tiny pigtail and appears to be a double cap.
The cold draw is super sweet with an amazing amount of varied citrus: lemon, grapefruit, and lime.

The spice reminds me of chipotle…and makes me sneeze three times in succession.
There is a strong mint julep quality that I love. And a very earthy and musty quality that is downright tasty.
Time to light up…
The draw is fine. But a little loose.

First impressions are of a very meaty influence. Then a big blast of white pepper. This baby still has some serious kick to it.
But what is clearly attractive to my palate is the clear evidence of a perfectly aged blend. A richness that is indescribable. Wow.

And here is the mustiness. Not your usual unpleasant musty element; but rather, a tamed version that is actually very pleasant.

Chocolate mousse is driving the boat now. It’s like the U-No bar or even a Three Musketeers bar in which the nougat just melts in your mouth. Delicious.

Strength is a potent medium.

This is an exquisite blend. I wish I had the dough so I could own a big humidor that I could slide boxes of cigars into…or even better my own little walk-in. But then I am in the position of only being able to afford cigars that I know only need a couple months of humi time.

And here is the big “therefore”…With Privada Cigar Club, Brian Disend sends you the aged cigars that you might never have a chance to ever smoke. I find this concept simple and inspiring.
The downside is the cigar I am reviewing isn’t available with this kind of age on it…except through Brian. You can buy new Darumas but they just aren’t going to come close to this stick.

The richness that is fomenting is friggin ridiculous. Brian says in the handout that comes with each monthly package describes everything you need to know about the cigars in your possession. What struck me is that Brian included this blend in his top 5 favorites of all time. Great…no pressure on me to get it right.

The complexity is through the roof. Transitions move like greased lightning. The finish is so goddam decadent that I’m plotzing.

I had no idea what to expect as this is my first foray with the Privada Cigar Club. Was it all hype and bullshit or is it the real deal?

Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” is playing. Did you know that music critics have all decided that Gilmour’s guitar solo is the finest rock solo of all time?

Cherries Jubilee appears in such a subtle way that it causes the intense citrus to find its partner in crime.
There are flavors going on that I don’t have the smarts to describe. Yeah, so far, this cigar is heading towards a rating of 107.

This cigar is fucking insane. I believe its part of the December release but I’m not sure. I should have asked Brian if it was November’s release or not. My bad. Still, with the guarantee of always getting special cigars, this is just the start of the journey with Privada Cigar Club. The Gambinos love that name.

The draw is spot on. The loose quality of the draw early on disappeared pretty quickly.
I get a blast of grapefruit. And I love grapefruit. Then the light mintyness rears its pretty head and balances the tartness. Perfect.

It’s like this cigar has a brain. This would have made a great 1950’s science fiction movie. The cigar’s tobacco was grown next to a nuclear power plant and roams the heather looking for lesser cigar blends to tell dirty jokes to.

Every puff brings on a different aspect of the blend. It is uncanny. The café mocha sweeps my palate away to a distant land where old white men rule the world….er…wait…never mind.

Man, I ain’t shittin’ you when I say this cigar exceeds my definition of perfection.

Strength is quickly inching towards medium/full. I was scared to death that after 6 years of aging, this blend would be too mild and without pizazz. Nothing could be further from the truth. This is a kick ass blend.

I had only intended to write an abbreviated review of the Daruma but I’m so swept up in the sheer beauty of this blend that I can’t shut up.

Every single puff brings excitement to my loins. At nearly 69 years old, that is something; as I believe I lost my loins in a bizarre gardening accident when I turned 60.

Only $25.99 per month. Brian is insane. He probably dreams of fava beans and a nice Chianti.

I just realized I’ve not taken a sip of any liquid since I began. The thirst that cigar smoking can inhabit is only an inhibitor. I want nothing to interfere with the flavors.

Not a single burn issue.
I’m going to need my PerfecDraw cigar poker to act as a roach clip when the stub gets small. I believe there will still be gold at that point.

OK. I’m sold. Brian ain’t fucking around. He told me that it’s very common for some customers to order any number of packages per month just to get more than one stick per brand/blend to try. That’s a great idea.

I’ve belonged to every cigar of the month club there is. And I gave up on all of them for being either too expensive for the cigars provided or just plain not excited at what blends were picked for that month.
Unless something drastic happens, like Brian asked to rob Lufthansa at La Guardia by the Gambinos, this club is a keeper.

A magnificent cigar that provides an uplifting start to my day.
Should you decided to try the Privada Cigar Club (and you definitely must), make sure to tell Brian that the Katman sent you.

Rating: 107

The handout description:

The package is a big Boveda packet:

The 2018 HVC Black Friday:

The 2012 Room101 Daruma Mutante Lancero:

The El Titan de Bronze Grand Reserve:

The Mystery Cigar:



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7 replies

  1. What an absolute treat to read this. Your writing is impeccable and the review is spot on. You are one of the greats! Thank you!

  2. Great cigar three years ago, too – Daruma Mutantes are awesome.

  3. Rating : 107…I love it! Can’t wait for that illustrious 220. Fuck the naysayers, you’re the only cigar reviewer worth reading because you don’t have to kiss the industries ass. But dammit Uncle Katman you’re draining my bank account. Just ordered a bunch of Isabela cigars and now I think I have to join this club. I like the fact that the cigars are already aged so I can smoke them immediately. It pains me a little when I buy cigars and have to wait 3-6 months to smoke ‘em…but it’s always worth it. I’ll tell Brian the Katman sent me.

  4. Great review , I just recently joined the Privada Cigar Club and I have loved every cigar I’ve been sent. I have an ok collection but this club allows me to have once in a lifetime experiences from years passed and exclusive experiences without standing in a super long line or spending a big pile of money.
    Katman’s reviews are always great and entertaining too .thanks guys.

  5. Hi Phil, I enjoy reading your cigar reviews and you’ve turned me on to quite a good number of cigars with I’d have never tried otherwise. This review of the Privada Cigar Club intrigued me enough to sign up! Excited to get my first package from them.
    John from Cincinnati

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