Matt Booth is known for standing out in a crowd, and besides his personality being eye catching, his cigars are taking on those same traits. It was a rocky start initially for Room 101 Cigars, but in the past two years they have really turned things around and begun releasing some killer smokes. I am a big fan of the Namakubi line, and also the O.S.O.K., but I was very eager to see the release of the new line this year at the 2012 IPCPR. As you know, Matt Booth has been heavily influence by his time in the far east, and that has shown once again in the the line. Named after daruma dolls which are modeled after Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen sect of Buddhism, the new Daruma line is a blend that catches your attention in many ways.
Featured at this years 2012 IPCPR, the Daruma Edition is the newest line to the Room 101 portfolio, and it encompasses the same vitolas that were shown in the Namakubi line from last year. For this review I am choosing one of my favorite vitolas in the line, and that is the Sucio. the Sucio is the Churchill vitola in the line, and measures 7″ with a 48 ring gauge. The cigar is draped with a lovely Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, and it is dark in presentation. Underneath that is a Brazilian binder, and is encompassed with filler tobacco from the Dominican Republic and Honduras. The packaging in every sense is fairly similar to that of the Namakubi, but coloring and images have changed on the bands and boxes. (I actually dig the design on this release.)
|Interior of Band|
The cigar is firm in hand, and has a nice texture. It is not very oily, and it is really between this silky texture and being rough. The wrapper is this lovely marbled Colorado coloring, and it is kind of a dark Colorado, near Maduro. The band really pops off of the cigar, and I love the matte teal coloring with the silver. It has this awesome Mayan/Aztec jewelry coloring vibe to it, and it is fitting with Matt Booth and Room 101. One cool thing is that on the interior of the band there is a daruma doll image, and it is a nice little touch. The cigar has a great aroma on the wrapper of cedar and spices, and at the foot of the cigar I pick up some wood, earth, coffee, hay and floral notes. Lighting up the cigar there is a slow and soft beginning, but it does not take long for the cigar to get rolling in terms of flavors. From the get do there is this nice spicy cedar flavor profile, and it is showing some soft hints of pepper in that. With that I am picking up some coffee notes and it is accompanied by this sweet citrus cocoa flavor. There is this after taste of mint chocolate mousse as well with the cigar, and it is a treat. I am getting a strength level to the cigar around that medium/ medium full level, but it is concealed very well by the flavors. In terms of construction the cigar is showing a great burn line, and with that a nice colored ash that is holding on to the cigar firmly.
|Ecuadorian Habano wrapper|
When I get into the second third of the cigar the flavors continue to rock my palate, and there is some additional complexities to it. I am just going to say this now, and some of you all will be like shut up, but I was getting this subtle flavor hints of Bartlett pears. It is very soft, and more on the finish, but I am getting a flavor familiar to that. It is still showing those spicy cedar notes with definite pepper notes present, and it is still showing those minty cocoa mousse flavors with bits of citrus here and there. I am still having a perfect burn line present with the cigar and it is keeping that great solid ash that is charcoal in coloring. The strength has been remaining at that medium/medium-full level throughout, and this smoke is rocking!
I am in the final third of the cigar now and the smoke is finishing wonderfully. I am a big fan of the Churchill size because it is a long smoke and the ring gauge is still below 50, and I think when blended well you can get tons of flavors and a cool smoke. The final third finishes very cool and enjoyable, and as to be expected shows tons of flavors. I am getting those minty chocolate notes that are very smooth and creamy, and there is this tea note present with that. There are still some citrus notes present here and there, and also those spicy cedar notes. I am still picking up those subtle pear notes, and I know you think I am crazy. The strength of the cigar finishes at a solid medium full level, and it is very cool on the finish. The last draw is very flavorful and it is showing that perfect burn line down to the nub with that solid charcoal colored ash.
|Nice Burn Line|
I have been a fan of all the new releases by Matt Booth and Room 101 Cigars of late, and he has really turned the company around in my opinion. For a while I was like, “this is a disaster,” but now I am praising their accomplishments. This cigar and line really offers some incredible flavors, and what I enjoy is that he is keeping those same vitolas from the Namakubi line. I love that most of the cigars are available in smaller ring gauges, and that he has cigars which are a short smoke and some a long smoke. I typically go for a Papi Chulo or Sucio when smoking a Namakubi, and I know I will do the same with the Daruma. While this line possessed a strength level that was stronger than the Namakubi, the line still offered an abundance of flavors. Constructed perfectly this cigar was a winner from when I first lit it up. I have tons of faith that this smoke will do well through the remaining of the year, and that it will find its way into my Top 25. I give this cigar a 93, and look forward to enjoying another one this evening.