Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Boba Who? Bobalu!



Yesterday was the very first spring-like morning here in the Hoosier state, and it afforded me the opportunity to sit out on the porch with my mutt and enjoy a cigar. I tried the Bobalu Double Maduro Robusto.

Now, before I go much further I need to take a minute and tell Bobalu's story. Bobalu is a cigar shop in Austin Texas where cigars are hand rolled while you wait. It's a novel concept, and when I inspected the double maduro I could see the craftsmanship that was taken. You could tell rom the oily, leathery wrapper that this wasn't a cigar manufactured by the millions. The band was simple, no pressed printing, no elaborate design, no hologram. It was simple, designed not to take anything away from the stick itself.

There were very few veins present and the wrapper was just a little toothy. There is a lot of misinformation about the double maduro. some say that it is double wrapped. Some believe that double maduro means that the wrapper and the binder are maduro. The answer is none of the above. It simply refers to the color of the wrapper. Maduro is Spanish for mature, and it refers to the extra time spent allowing the wrapper to age and cure. Double Maduros are typically darker, more like an obscuro.

Now that I'm off that soapbox let's talk about the stick itself. When I lit it up I was surprised. It was mild and earthy. Within a half an inch the leather and light spice came in. The burn was as close to perfect as one could ever hope for and the ash held on very well. The one and only flaw was that a sliver of the wrapper came undone after lighting. That's it. Other than that it was exactly what one would expect from a fine cigar.

The second portion of the cigar picked up steam just a little, becoming sweet and spicy. This stick is very complex, and I found pinning the flavors down difficult. I found myself sitting down, enjoying the breeze and the moment. In the future when I think of early spring I will think of the flavors blended in the cigar.

It ended full and spicy, building from the mild first puffs to a full rich finish. I could enjoy this cigar with a good straight whiskey, but it wouldn't go well with a weak drink. On a scale of one to ten in strength it started a four, quickly became a six and ended a solid eight, building in strength and complexity throughout.

This my friends is the kind of cigar we look for. It's not overpriced and resting on a reputation earned decades ago. It's about a lone man rolling cigars in a small shop, doing so with skill and craftsmanship to create not a cigar, but a moment, a memory. All that for seven bucks a stick.

You can order Bobalu cigars from their website, www.bobalu.com , and they can be found in some stores, though they are more of a regional phenomenon. Check them out. My friend Evo Tera persuaded my to give them a try, and I was very impressed. This gents, if one helllluvvvvaaaa cigar!

Construction 4.5/5
Burn/ash. 4.9/5
Smoke 4.6/5
Flavor. 4.8/5
Value. 4.8/5
Draw. 4.7/4

Overall. 4.7/5