Monday, January 21, 2008

Small Serviceable Rocky Patel OSG

Review of Rocky Patel OSG Petite Corona:

"Original" sun grown? As opposed to "standard" sun grown? Ah, the stories these distributors tell. Who knows if any of it is true, or what it means? Bottom line is, the Rocky Patel OSG petite coronas are decent little stogies, especially if the price goes down again. Right now you can get 18 of these for $49.95 at Cigars International. Still a bit on the high side for a cigar blend that is widely acknowledged to be inferior to the standard RP sun growns.

And just how inferior are they? Not bad, actually. Like most other full-bodied Rockies, the OSG has a deep, solid burn that you can leave unattended for several minutes at a time. Which is exactly what I did, stepping out to the porch every 5 or 6 minutes to steal a few puffs in the freezing cold, then running back inside and watching the tube. You can do this with a Rocky and not worry about having to relight.

This particular OSG was pleasingly strong and tart, with a bit of salty citrous flavor on top of the usual Rocky brawn. You won't be "oohing and aahing" the whole time, but you will certainly nod your head appreciatively. One of the better small cigars I've had, big enough to smoke like a "real" cigar with a slow burn that doesn't get hot or bitter.

I look forward to having a few more of these. I'll update this posting if the experience changes over multiple samplings.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

El Rey of Reckoning

I recently visited my local cigar store and bought a robusto/maduro version of the El Rey del Mundo. Turns out I liked the little brother better. The fat robusto, while wrapped in an enticing white tissue paper that implied something extra special inside, smoked richly but without any special flavor. There was only the slightest, occasional hint of the mysterious powdery oriental spice that graces the pallet when smoking the lighter-shaded junior.

Not to misrepresent; it was a decent cigar, one that most aficionados would likely rave about. Just a bit plain... ash and pepper and barely perceptible cedar, like a hundred other cigars. I'm not giving up on the El Rey line just yet. I'll try another variety or two, to see if any of the fatter boys can deliver a punchier version of the elusive and funky junior.

Another factor to consider: Smoking in a crowded cigar lounge dampens the experience, no matter how good the stogie. The best way to do it is outside, on a warm and windless day. Stuck in a lounge, with the other lizards' lingering exhalations searing your nose, stinging your eyes, and turning your clothing into a hazmat disposal project, it's hard to convince yourself that the cigar you just paid 7 dollars for is the cat's pajamas.

Bring back those lazy, hazy crazy days of summer. My cigars are crying inside their humidor.