Wrapper:  Ecuadorian Habano
Binder:  Mata Fina, Brazil
Filler:  Dominican Republic and Honduran
Brand:  Room 101
Factory:  Tabacos Rancho Jamastran
Price Range:  $5-$7
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I’ve had two experiences with Room 101 so far – the Johnny Tobacconaut and the OSOK.  The OSOK was a great introduction, while the Tobacconaut wasn’t my favorite.  Today I’m taking a look at the Room 101 Daruma Roxxo, a beautiful little cigar that seems to match up with the weather perfectly.

 

Room 101 Daruma Roxxo – First Impressions

The wrapper smells very much like powdered cocoa mix in my office, but outside it in the elements it smells distinctly like sweet hay.  The cap has a snag in it, but no biggie.  A cold draw doesn’t give us many clues as to what’s in store, except for something akin to cloves and a perfect draw.

Room 101 Daruma Punch Cut

I’ll be pairing this today with good ole Water and the occasional sip of Dr. Pepper just because.

Room 101 Daruma Roxxo – First Third

Earth, Coffee, Toast, Leather, Hay, Tobacco, Cream

Very first puffs yielded earth, stale coffee, and what I’d consider toast.  There’s a little pepper through the nose, but otherwise it’s very gentle.  And, the pepper seems to be fleeting.

Within moments the toast yields to more of a leathery profile with an interesting twist:  hay, sweet tobacco, and  leather combine nicely to make this a really enjoyable cigar right up front.  So far the smoke has a medium+ body on it while the strength is remaining in solid medium territory.

Room 101 Daruma First Third

After the first 1/2 inch is burned, strength does pick up a notch with the addition of pepper.  It’s like that time my daughter made scrambled eggs and, knowing I love mine with pepper, added a shit ton for good measure.

In fact, as I correct a burn issue, pepper is very much the dominating part of the Daruma Roxxo right now.  Toast is returning on the backend, but wow – pepper is hitting hard.  I used to have a hard time recognizing pepper, but I think I would’ve figured it out real quick if I would’ve been smoking more of these.  It’s a lingering pepper coating the tongue and back of the throat – hard to mistake for anything else.

Room 101 Daruma First Third

Right about here the pepper begins to have a shift change with what seems to be more coffee.  It’s relenting, but I can still feel it from previous puffs. A little cream comes into play as well, very soothing on the palette from the pepper assault.  Wow.  When I say cream, I mean the homemade whipping cream with a little sugar added.  Damn this is good.

Room 101 Daruma Roxxo – Second Third

Walnuts, Fruit, Coffee, Black Pepper

Entering the second third, I drop the ash, make another quick touchup, and BOOM!  Never before have I tasted walnuts in a cigar before.  I can’t even remember the last time I’ve had walnuts, so take that for what it’s worth, but to my mind it’s unmistakable.

Room 101 Daruma Second Third

The presence (body) and potency (strength) of this cigar are doing weird things to me.  It’s like a roller coaster:  here it’s strong, there it’s medium, occasionally it’s very mild and pleasant.  Sometimes the smoke is rich, thick, and chewy – other times it’s softer.  Very odd to experience, but I’d be lying if I said it was anything less than great.

Now there’s something fruity starting to develop… not sure what it is exactly, but sure as hell wasn’t expecting it.  I’m thinking cherries perhaps, maybe an amaretto flavor.  Disaronno anyone?

All traces of pepper have left us for the time being, and the smoke now has a very smooth, creamy texture.  The cigar itself is getting much softer at the halfway point – spongy, but so far hasn’t caused any problems.

Nearing the midway point, more coffee comes to the forefront – soft breakfast blend style of coffee, to at all like the stale coffee on the intro.  I’m also picking up black pepper flavors without being peppered.

Room 101 Daruma Roxxo – Last Third

Toast, Orange, Coffee, Cream

Just as I’m typing the above line, I reach over and take a puff.  It’s out.  What’s in?  Oranges with zero smoke.  Tap the ash and torch it back to life – more toast but the orange is still there.  Badassery.  About as close as a cigar can get to orange marmalade and toast.  Hot damn.  Where has this little gem been all off my life?

Now that I’m definitely in the last third, the Room 101 Daruma is returning to an earthy, coffee profile.  The coffee continues to get better as this cigar ashes, and it’s really on point in the last third.  Rich coffee experience without getting bitter despite the sponginess. Like a perfectly balanced iced coffee with cream, hold the sugar.

Room 101 Daruma Last Third

And wow.  Now I’m pulling Mexican Hot Chocolate out of this cigar.  Lunch is ready, and the Domestic Engineer has reminded me twice now to come inside, but I can’t leave.  This is just too good. This may be my first ever 10/10 for Value, even with burn issues and a couple relights.

*Insert Nicotine Buzz*

Room 101 Daruma Finished Review

EDIT:  After this review, I turned to google to see if I was crazy or not.  The Katman had a similar experience here if you’d like to read it also.

Room 101 Daruma Roxxo Review
9 Reviewer
9.3 Cigar Noise Network (3 votes)
Pros

Complex

Great price point

Balanced

Wonderful flavors

Cons

Uneven Burn

Spongy

Summary
The Room 101 Daruma Roxxo packs a lot of experience into a smaller, inexpensive cigar! This should be on everyone's $7 and under list. Get a couple, buckle up, and enjoy one hell of a ride.
Value
Burn
Draw
Flavor
Enjoyment
What Other Folks Are Saying: 3 Make some Noise
Sweet smoke
A surprise of sweetness though out the entire stick. Very strong in the 5x60 size. A good amount of spice and pepper but not overwhelming. A continued home in my humidor.
January 23, 2016, 9:35 pm
Value9.1
Burn8.8
Draw9.5
Flavor9.5
Enjoyment9.2
0
1
Great
Heard about this one for a while now. finally buurned one and yes...amazing. My palate picked up a lot of Citrus as well as flavors listed above. No issues here.
December 6, 2015, 2:05 am
Value9.4
Burn9
Draw9.2
Flavor10
Enjoyment9
0
2
Fantastic cigar
Well worth it. It's a must have in every humi.
December 4, 2015, 3:38 am
Value9.1
Burn9.3
Draw9.3
Flavor9.5
Enjoyment9.4
0
2
Make some Noise

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Dave West

Editor and Contributor at CigarNoise
Identifying as a Cigar Enthusiast more than an Aficionado, I enjoy trying new cigars and attempting to annotate my experience. Disclosure: As of June 2017, I began writing for SmallBatchCigar.com and will no longer be reviewing SBC exclusives
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