Cheap Bastard Maduro – Initial Thoughts
Going through my humidor, the Cheap Bastard Maduro caught my eye and we had a moment. Like when someone steals your parking space, cuts you in line, or takes an inconsiderate amount of time ordering fast food like its their own personal gourmet line. Yeah, that kind of moment.
Apparently, Cheap Bastard cigars come pre-cut and with a box of matches enclosed in each 50 count box because that’s the thing to do for cheap bastards. Can’t fault ’em there, it’s a genius sales pitch! And these silky smooth bastards hail from the Dominican Republic, a region that I’m quite find of.
Upon closer inspection, the cigar is anything but silky smooth as advertised. I can’t imagine ever seeing a bumpier, uglier sonofabitch with a band on it. I mean, there’s ugly, and then there’s the Cheap Bastard. But really and truly, aesthetics only count so far as this post is concerned. Past the review, flavor and mechanics matter more than anything else and that’s what we’re here to test.
Cheap Bastard Maduro – Flavors
Musk, Honey, Floral Notes, Earth, Burnt Cardboard, Cinnamon, Cedar, Nutmeg, Wet Cardboard, Hickory, Maple Syrup
On the surface, there’s a good amount of muskiness up front that quickly gives way to enjoyable flavors before ending with a rough finish. Hints of honey, floral notes, and earth form a very smooth, mild profile. I’m reminded of Honey Milk Tea at this point.
The finish, though, tastes like this cigar looks. Burnt cardboard comes to mind, and I wish that I was being facetious. I find myself wanting to enjoy this Underdog but the long finish just keeps snapping me back to reality.
Approaching the halfway mark, our Cheap Bastard develops sharp notes of cinnamon, cedar, and nutmeg amidst a background of, now, wet cardboard. It’s safe to say that these flavors are fairly discordant, despite cinnamon being one of my favorite spices on this beautiful planet.
Right before the band, hickory and maple syrup become flavor forward for what may just be the straw to my camel’s back. Independently these aren’t terrible but in conjunction with cardboard they become an unholy cocktail. The price of admission is just too much for this rodeo.
I’m brushing my teeth and calling the time of death at 90 minutes.
Cheap Bastard Maduro – Construction
Aside from a very flaky ash, the burn line remained maintenance free (until the last third) and was the highlight of this experience. Too often a great cigar experience is compromised by relights or an uneven burn, but the Cheap Bastard even tried to save me on butane.
Even though this cigar came precut with a punch sized hole in the cap, the draw was too loose for my liking. In this case, I’d prefer to make my own cuts and adjust as necessary if I were to smoke more of these. That, or I’d purposely move it from 65% to 69% humidity and see if that extra moisture expands the leaves enough to get me where I want to be.
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