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Old 02-16-2004, 08:01 AM   #1
sd_smoker
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: OKC
Posts: 4,336
Punch Royal Selection #12

I just received a box of these from Feb 02 as part of my first box order. I hadn't heard much about them, so I pretty much just ordered them on a whim. The fact that these are being discontinued had something to do with it. What little I had heard seemed to indicate that they were on the mild side, which also had me a little nervous since I prefer fuller bodied cigars. I figured, worst case, I could trade them off.

The cigars came bandless as they are one of the few PC's you can get in a 25 count cabinet. I wish more smokes were available this way. They all have a very nice medium brown wrapper, with a reddish hue. The texture of the wrapper on these is like nothing I've ever felt. They are so smooth, they feel downright velvety. It made me wonder how these would burn, but it turned out not to be an issue. I decided to pair this cigar with a dark ale from Big Hole Brewing that reminded me of a little of Guiness, though a little "bitier".

Upon lighting I was greeted with a slightly toasty flavor that was mild, but quite nice. I was a little nervous that it would remain this mild, though the flavor was good. It had that "twang", but at about 1/10 the level you would find in a Boli PC, for example. It just kinda hung out in the background, but it was there if you were looking for it. As far as naming specific flavors, I've found that it takes practice. When I first started trying to identify flavors I would first have to pick out a flavor I was tasting, then think long and hard to try and identify it with something recognizable. I'm finding that the descriptions are coming to me a little easier now, but I'm still working on it.

As I moved past the first inch, the flavor picked up a notch and was becoming quite good. I noticed a flavor that reminded me of graham crackers. It alternated between this toasty graham craker flavor and a sweeter flavor that reminded me of toffee. It was unbelievably tasty! The flavor pretty much stayed along these lines, but I wouldn't say that it was a one dimensional cigar by any means. There were enough changes to keep me very interested, though I don't think I could quite describe them. At least not well enough to do them justice. The beer contrasted enough with the cigar that it cleansed my palate and really let me experience the flavors of the cigar with each draw, but not so much that it conflicted in any way. A very nice pairing!

By the end of this hour long smoke, I had decided that this was one of the best cigars I've ever had! Boy did my gamble ever pay off! By the end I noticed that I was getting a bit of a nicotine buzz... sneaky little bastard! I never would have labeled this cigar as full bodied, but it was full flavored. I suppose that, perhaps due to my inexperience with Habanos, I still associate full bodied with harshness. I couldn't believe how incredibly smooth this cigar was right down to the nub! I couldn't believe this cigar was only two years old. I would think this is what a 10 year old cigar would taste like...

I haven't developed a rating system yet, but this would have been way up there! Very highly recommended! Even though my collection of Habanos consists of only 3 boxes at this point, I am very tempted to grab another box of these. The thought of running out of this cigar and not being able to attain more is just depressing!
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