June 2011

 Château Grand Cru

When you give a cigar the title of Château Grand Cru, it is safe to say that it will be a high quality cigar. It is also safe to say that it is probably not going to be your everyday cigar as well though. I will continue with that thought though by saying that there is nothing wrong with a cigar not being an everyday cigar. I have thousands of cigars and have had thousands, and there are some cigars which are meant to be enjoyed regularly, and those that are meant for special occasions. You don’t smoke a $5 cigar on your wedding day and you don’t smoke a $30 cigar every day, well you can if you make a lot of money, and more power to you. The more you smoke cigars, and the more you fall in love with them you begin to have cigars in your humidor for all purposes. I have cigars for everyday and I have cigars like the Château Grand Cru for those special occasions. Graycliff Cigars in general are not every day cigars for me, in fact I don’t have a  lot in my portfolio, but when I enjoy them I try and experience them in the Graycliff fashion. The cigars are high end smokes and contain lots of unique tobacco to make a truly superior smoke. The Château Grand Cru was released in 2005 and I believe it to be one of their finest cigars. The cigar features Costa Rican Habano wrapper with an Ecuadorian binder. The filler is a tri-country blend with tobacco from Nicaragua, Honduras and Costa Rica.

I chose the Pirate vitola which is 6” by 52 figurado. The wrapper is fairly veiny but has wonderful aromas of wood, pepper and raisins. Within the first puff of the cigar I was picking up lots of cedar notes. There was some black pepper along with it and a little bit of earth but overall it begins very smooth with cedar notes. When I got into the second third of the cigar I began to pick up a lot more flavors and I can tell the cigar is growing stronger also. I am getting lots of raisins, almonds, cocoa, earth and pepper, but I still have that cedar flavor finish. There is an obvious growth in the cigar from the first third to the second third and I have to admit this cigar really is impressive. The cigar is burning perfectly producing lots of smoke, and the ash is staying strong on the cigar. Growing still, the final third of the cigar is the best part, showcasing a full body with a plethora of complex flavors. From raisins to chocolate and leather to almonds there are tons of flavors present. I can’t pinpoint exactly all the flavors because they are bouncing and playing off one another but I must say it is truly incredible.

This was a terrific cigar and so far the second best Graycliff I have had, behind the Double Espresso. This is a cigar that really grows in every department, and the further you get into the cigar the better it gets. I give this cigar a 94 and would give it a higher ranking if it had had a better wrapper on it. I loved the second and final third of the cigar of the smoke, and if the first third had a little more depth it would definitely have gotten a higher ranking as well.  With that in mind, this is a great cigar that grows more and more giving the smoker the preparation for a full bodied cigar. It does not hit you right off the bat but lets you work your way into it. Graycliff’s Château Grand Cru is truly a unique and flavorful cigar that will be remembered for those certain times when you want something a little more special.

 Château Grand Cru Pirate