Robusto, 5" x 50 ring gauge / $7.99, Maxamar's
Today I'll be reviewing the latest release from Hammer and Sickle, the Berlin Wall. First off if you've never seen the packaging from them it is probably more ornate than the stuff coming out of Gurkha. This cigar comes packed in a white marble box and the band is supposedly actually made from copper. The cigar is made in Honduras from Honduran, Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers, a Honduran binder, and a Honduran Criollo wrapper. If comes in three sizes, a 7"x52 Churchill, a 6"x50 toro and the subject of this review a 5"x50 robusto. This was the first one I smoked.
The first thing that that you notice about this cigar is the band. The copper really stands out. Although from far away it is difficult to read since the words "Hammer + Sickle Berliner Mauer 1961-1989" are pressed into the surface. The wrapper is a rusty brown in color and has a slight lumpiness to it. There are some veins but very little oil to it. Giving the cigar a squeeze I got a slight amount of give and one soft spot below the band. The wrapper of the cigar gave off the faint aroma of barnyard, while from the foot I was able to detect the aroma of leather. After clipping it with my MTX and taking a cold draw on it I tasted cocoa powder with a good draw.
Lighting up the cigar brought about the flavors of chocolate and leather with a some spice on the retrohale and tongue. The draw was good and I got a good amount of smoke out of the cigar. A little bit into the cigar I started tasting earth and wood as well with a slight sweetness on the finish. The burn was slightly off and needed a little correction, but that could have been due to my bad light. The whiteish ash held on for about three quarters of an inch before needing to be tapped off. It would classify this cigar in the medium body and strength range.
As I moved into the second third the flavors changed slightly into leather, earth, wood, and cinnamon with the sweetness on the finish still there. The draw continued to be good although the burn did need one more touch up.
Moving into the final third of the cigar the spice starting building to a point where it was stronger than the first third. The flavors settled into leather and wood. By this point the burn had straightened itself out as well. The metal band required some care in removing because it needed to be bent off without tearing the wrapper. Towards the end of the cigar the chocolate flavor started to come back with a slight note of butter cream frosting.
Overall this was a very enjoyable cigar. I think it would go great with a cup of coffee in the morning and would like to give that a try some time. I think that most smokers could enjoy it because it probably isn't too strong for the mild smokers, and is interesting enough for the strong smokers. The reasonable price helps out as well.