Cigar Review: Gurkha Doble Maduro Churchill

Cigar Review Gurkha Doble Maduro

What is it with Gurkha cigars? The Gurkha Titan is one of the greatest cigars you’ll ever smoke, but when I smoked one at a cigar function a few nights ago, two different people felt compelled to cop an attitude about Gurkhas. The first one said, “Gurkha? Yeah I used to smoke Gurkhas.” The second simply said, “Oh . . . a Gurkha.” Both admitted they had never smoked the Titan, and when I asked why, they both said they would never have an occasion to try one because it is a Gurkha.

I actually understand perfectly. Gurkha’s marketing plan appears to involve putting out dozens of different cigars with catchy names, and not always with putting out great cigars. I’ve had some really unremarkable Gurkhas (the Gurkha Evil comes to mind). With some cigar lines, like Rocky Patel, you’re not taking much of a risk is you try an unknown because they are pretty consistent. I think many people have had enough bad Gurkhas to write off the entire brand.

There is also the issue of bundling, which I think takes away from the perception of Gurkha being a premium line. Other than Titans and that one lousy Evil, I’ve never specifically purchased a Gurkha, yet one of the drawers in my humidor is overflowing with them. That’s because they seem to come with every sample pack and humidor I’ve ever purchased.

But I think the Gurkha haters are missing an opportunity. Like buying unknown, ten dollar bottles of wine, hoping to find a real sleeping beauty, among the myriad Gurkha cigars there are likely some real winners. If Gurkha can offer a cigar as great as the Titan, what else might they be hiding? (I just remembered the Gurkha Grand Reserve infused with Louis XIII cognac and the Gurkha Legend. Both also very good.)

Doble Gurkha Madura Cigar ReviewSo, tonight, I opened the Gurkha drawer in the humidor. Man there are a lot of Gurkhas, including four Doble Maduro Churchills. That can be a promising scenario. If I find that I have more than one of a cigar I’ve never tried, that means that if I do try it and like it, I can move the remaining sticks to one of my top drawers (“top drawer cigars” – get it?) to flag it as a great cigar.

The construction of the Gurkha Doble Maduro (it’s wrapped in two Costa Rican maduro wrappers, and doble is the Spanish word for double, get it?**) was perfect, as was the burn.

No specific tastes dominated after lighting, just some cedar and spice. A slight initial aftertaste that I thought might foreshadow a bitterness to this cigar, but it never materialized. Most of my favorite cigars are Maduros, and this being a double, I expected to enjoy this stick. I was not disappointed. A very tasty smoke, with no harshness. I sensed that tiny note of bitter aftertaste a few times during the length of the cigar, but it never grew into a problem, and this is a double maduro after all. When I finished, I was glad there are more to be had in my humidor, and that is testament enough.

So, did the Gurkha Doble Maduro achieve top drawer status? No, that’s some pretty rarified company, currently occupied by God of Fire Carlitos, Alec Bradley Medalists and Prensados, Partagas Habanas, Cu-avana Intensos, and yes, Gurkha Titans, to name a few. But the Doble Maduro did earn itself an escape from the Gurkha drawer, and into my drawer of “go-to” Churchills. I give it an 89 on The Morris Scale.

From Cigars International:

“When nothing less than the best will do, aficionados everywhere look to Gurkha. For years Gurkha has been the choice cigar among the most elite from business executives to Royalty. They have been commissioned by some of the biggest names to make the world’s finest cigars from the best tobaccos available, which is why Gurkha regularly referred to as the “Rolls Royce of Cigars.” The company focuses on creating a multitude of blends, each using limited and rare tobaccos and made in small quantities so as to not sacrifice quality. Gurkha cigars are a must try for all cigar enthusiasts.

Gurkha Doble Maduro remains incredibly smooth due to its well-aged blend of hearty tobaccos. You’ll experience rich, full-flavors with a sweet aftertaste and notes of cedar without having to worry about the blend becoming too strong. Medium-bodied, the cigar is finished with a premium Costa Rican maduro leaf and comes encased in cedar so expect tons of complexities, thick smoke, and a truly enjoyable experience.”

Oh come on. I have never heard anyone describe Gurkha as the “Rolls Royce of Cigars”, although they are apparently God’s cigar of choice. With that said, the second paragraph is spot on in its description of the cigar, with the exception of “tons of complexities”.

** If you want to get really technical here, the name is off. In the spectrum of wrappers, the Maduro wrapper is followed by an even darker wrapper, called the Oscuro. The Oscuro wrapper is sometimes referred to as a “double Maduro”. To connote that there are two Maduro wrappers, as opposed to an Oscuro, “Maduro Doble” might have been a better name.


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