Wrapper: Pennsylvania Broadleaf
Size: 6 x 52 Box Pressed Toro
Today we take a look at the Protocol Sir Robert Peel Maduro.
Thank you to Juan Cancel for the samples.
These sticks have been resting naked for nearly 5 months.
From Cigar Dojo (From July, 2019):
“Cubariqueño Cigar Co. will debut the most premium cigar in the company’s popular Protocol brand later this month, launching ‘Protocol Sir Robert Peel’ at the 2019 IPCPR trade show.
“Protocol Sir Robert Peel draws inspiration from its namesake, a man regarded as the father of modern day policing. The naming strategy is consistent with former Protocol cigars, which feature law enforcement themes, as owners Bill Ives and Juan Cancel are both police officers (Juan Cancel retired earlier this year).
“Differing from past IPCPR releases—where the company has launched a new blend each year, beginning in 2015—Sir Robert Peel will be offered in not one, but two blend varieties: Natural and Maduro. Each cigar contains binder and filler tobaccos sourced entirely from Nicaraguan tobaccos; the Natural blend is finished with an Ecuadorian Rosado leaf, while the Maduro showcases Pennsylvania Broadleaf.
“Protocol Sir Robert Peel will debut in a singular 6″ x 52 box-pressed toro format, with production once again being handled by Erik Espinosa’s boutique-minded La Zona factory in Estelí. The cigars are packaged in boxes of 10, with pricing set at $11.95 per cigar (MSRP)—marking the most expensive offering from the company to date.”
A nicely constructed stick with tight seams. One of the toothiest cigars in memory. There are natural color variations in the wrapper as shown in my photos. But basically, a dark chocolate brown. The triple cap is flawless. While box pressed, it looks more like a San Lotano Oval. Don’t know if it was designed that way or it sort of relaxed over the last 4-5 months.
I love the snazzy cigar band…very classy. And there is a purple footer ribbon that tops things off. The box press is clean and uniform. I like the heaviness in the hand the cigar brings to the table. Evenly distributed tobacco throughout with nary a hard or soft spot.
SMELL THE GLOVE:
The strongest aroma is that of dark chocolate. It is followed by strong creaminess, black pepper, caramel, a touch of mint, barnyard, cedar, and the slightest bit of licorice.
The cold draw presents flavors of milk chocolate, cream, black pepper, malt, cedar, barnyard, and vanilla.
The draw is perfect. Once again, a review cigar does not need the help of my PerfecDraw draw adjustment tool. It is usually required when I smoke a less than artfully assembled cigar.
So glad I sat on this cigar for months. What a difference patience makes. Immediate complexity. A spicy start…big doses of black pepper coat the back of my throat. But there are notes of dark chocolate, malt, sweet things I cannot yet describe, very creamy, and very nutty.
I like the blend already. I loved the Sir Robert Peel Natural. I gave it a rating of 95. A tough score to beat. Juan Cancel was anxious for my opinion of the Maduro so here goes.
The sweetness ups the ante with elements of brown sugar, sweet rum, and chocolate covered raisins. Very nice. For a blend to immediately start with a complementary balance of savory v. sweet is unusual.
Strength hits medium/full all at once. This might be a ball buster by the last third. Or not.
Only found two written reviews of this cigar. I find this odd. Normally, it means that a reviewer didn’t like the cigar and decided not to review it. In actuality, I believe that this cigar needs its rest to shine. Maybe they were fooled by how quickly the Natural was ready to go and figured the same would apply for the Maduro. Both written reviews were OK. One review didn’t do the blend any favors with its rating. One waited til just a couple weeks ago to review which I like and the cigar got a better rating. Respect the blend. Everyone is in a hurry these days.
This stick is packed to the gills. Heavy in the hand and burns slowly.
The maltiness really shines here with a hoppy addition that makes me want to drink it.
A smoky meatiness appears that puts the pedal to the metal in the savory department. But perfectly balanced with the sweetie pie components. The cigar is smooth and rich. Like a fancy dessert after a King Henry I meal.
Construction is on point. The burn is impeccable.
I am absolutely convinced that my complaints about the burn on box pressed cigars is not my bad. It is the construction and rolling of the cigar in question. You put some serious rollers on a box press and no issues. Or then again…
An inch in and I’m not getting the fol de rol I got with the Natural. The complexity backs off a bit. Flavors dissipate some. In their absence, the black pepper takes over. Not sure what happened.
I’m a big maduro fan. So, it’s not bias on the wrappers.
Things flatten out a bit. A surprise as it began beautifully. But now seems to be in stasis.
Does the Sir Robert Peel just need more humi time? Don’t know. 4-5 months should be enough for the cigar to dig its heels in. Yeah, it could get exponentially better with more months added to its sleepy bedtime. But one thing no cigar manufacturer does is let you in on when to smoke their cigars…it interferes with sales. I’m not accusing Protocol of this as all cigar makers use this lack of information as a marketing tool. They want to sell cigars and telling you their blend needs a year of humidor time is shooting themselves in the foot with a lot of customers.
As the second third approaches, the cigar is earthy, peppery, savory, sweet but lacking the level of complexity it started with.
Transitions are lacking. The finish is mostly made up of spiciness and malt.
First sip of water and flavors are refreshed.
Barring a substantial increase in complexity in the second half, I’m going to go with the Natural as the better blend.
Flavors are limited to those already described. They are what I call the mirepoix of cigar flavors: Cocoa, espresso, nuttiness, earthiness, creaminess, and cedar. Of course, mirepoix in cooking is the holy trinity of veggies and contains only three ingredients so I am expanding that to include 6 ingredients.
It is odd to find that the first inch of a blend showed great potential and then see it slide to a lesser impression.
It is a good cigar. I just expected to see more from it by this point.
Protocol pumps out fantastic blends. I don’t think it is fair to them not to review their cigars just because they aren’t as splendiferous as their other blends. The owners want to know what smokers think…and not worry that reviewers might find themselves in the doghouse with them. Hence, I could only find two cigar industry reviews of this cigar. There are video reviews but I didn’t watch any of them.
I’ve toyed with the idea of doing a video review now and again; but I barely have any filter when I’m writing. God help me, and you, if I spew my impressions digitally. I’d have to give my blog an X rating.
I’m betting the second half shines. If it does, it means more humidor time needed.
But right now, I’m in total alignment with Cigar Coop and his rating of 90. He waited to review the cigar like I have.
There is no forward momentum going on. Same flavors. No additions. And the complexity is stagnant. Transitions are non-existent. The finish has expanded beyond just black pepper to include sweetness and some savory notes. But they don’t coat my teeth like they should.
The strength was more potent at the start than it is now. It is definitely smoother which might be the reason. The balance is still good. And it is a rich blend.
I detect some improvement. I hope it continues on this path.
There is a slight mustiness I wish would go away. Its absence might allow the blend to gather steam.
The cigar band is tight and I can’t slide it down for my photos. Drat.
How’s your weather? I’ve been watching the news and seems every part of the country is under an onslaught of terrible weather. Meanwhile, here in Wisconsin, it ain’t so bad. But then starting next week, we will see -20 degrees…without wind chill. Too cold for snow. But cold enough to make these old bones ache.
I discover the reason for the non-slip cigar band. It is two bands overlapping each other and I struggle and tear them to remove them.
I am disheartened that there isn’t a natural progression of the blend’s complexity. There is a definite inaction going on. At this point, at the halfway mark, the blend doesn’t graduate to something striking.
Hopefully, Ives and Cancel don’t hold this against me. It is only the opinion and palate of one smoker…me.
The basic flavors do jump out and take a bow on occasion, but they aren’t consistent.
Mustiness has disappeared. As a result, the flavors take the main stage once again.
The flavor profile seems to hover around the main component of earthy tobacco.
Sips of water highlight the chocolate, malt, and coffee elements. Raisins reappear.
With 2-1/2” to go, the blend sees a major improvement.
A comprehensive complexity returns.
The finish is much better now. A nice balance is back. Complexity is more enjoyable.
I have zero complaints about construction or burn.
The blend is now where I want it to be and where it should have been prior to this final portion of the stick.
The flavor profile has not changed an iota from earlier described elements. That’s not bad but it makes the blend more of a one trick pony.
Strength remains at a tolerable medium/full with no signs of nicotine.
The finish is now outstanding. Transitions really kick into gear, at last.
The sweetness of the raisins and the chocolate shine. The smokiness is a balanced counterpoint. What’s missing, for me, is that there is a serious lack of creaminess. I just happen to really enjoy a creamy blend.
The Natural version will definitely make my top 25 cigar list. Alas, I don’t think the Maduro will.
With 1-1/2” to go, the missing creaminess shows up in spades. Makes all the difference for me. It pushes the other flavors to excel.
The malty hoppiness returns. The missing coffee component returns as café au lait.
Now, I’m really digging the Sir Robert Peel Maduro. Sigh…
I’m not a cigar industry guy so I can’t explain the inconsistency…maybe I should have waited longer to review it.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS