The Rafael Gonzalez Churchill offers a long, smooth, and mellow smoke with dominant notes of cedar, nuts and a pinch of sweet spice. A terrific starter cigar – click to see more of our review.
Alec Bradley Sungrown Robusto
Alec Bradley Sungrown Robusto Cigar
By Gary Korb
Boasting a dark, oily wrapper and an ornate band, the Alec Bradley Sungrown Robusto looks similar to its Tempus and Overture cousins. An attractive Brazilian Mata Fina leaf surrounds a blend of Nicaraguan Esteli and Jalapa, plus Columbian longfillers, with a Honduran binder. Moreover, this combination told me that the smoke was going to have some muscle behind it.
One of the most distinguishing features of Alec Bradley cigars are their shimmery wrappers, and the Mata Fina on the Robusto was no exception. The cap clipped off easily exposing a lot of dark tobacco at the head. The cold draw was effortless with a mostly leathery taste.
After lighting, as expected, the first few puffs were very hearty. This is what Alec Bradley president Alan Rubin calls “frontloading”, which is designed to give you a lot of flavor from the cigar at the get-go.
Watch this video to learn more about frontloading:
The flavors at this point were primarily that of earth and sweet tobacco with a little flintiness.
The aroma was very impressive, as was the ash, which hung on well past the first inch. There was still some flintiness on the finish, but as the cigar headed into the second inch, it took on a darker, woodier character underscored by some sweetness from the Jalapa. It was at this point that the cigar become much spicier, too, but not in the peppery sense.
During the last act the cigar really juiced-up; the wood and spice flavors intensified as some subtle espresso nuances materialized on the finish.
Although I drank spring water with this cigar, a good Port would have improved the experience for me by adding some sweetness, and may even have helped reveal some of the more intricate flavors that lay hidden in the blend.
Overall, a very robust and complex cigar that makes a good fit for more experienced cigar smokers, or for those who have a preference for bold tobacco flavor.
Total Score: 8.7
Grabs your attention immediately
By Jed from ToastedFoot.com The Alec Bradley Sun Grown Robusto grabs your attention immediately, as the multicolored double bands pop against the dark Brazilian Mata Fina wrapper. The Sungrown is smooth with no veins, has a well constructed cap, and is very firm. The pre-light aroma and draw produces hints of barnyard, damp earth, and a bit of spice. Setting the flame to the foot, the burn proves to be even throughout, though the ash was a bit loose. The draw is medium and the temperature doesn’t heat up until I reach the nub of this Robusto. Working into thirds, the Sungrown begins with a very fresh tobacco taste coupled with a hint of sweetness. The second third has a livelier flavor profile with interesting notes of fruit in the body and spice in the finish. The final third brings a dash more spice but mostly remains consistent with the second third. The entire cigar is full on the palate, smooth, and, at times, creamy – a very enjoyable smoke. This Famous exclusive is another excellent offering from Alec Bradley and Famous has done well to secure it. Priced at just under five dollars a stick, this is a solid value. The Test Flight is a great way to sample the Sungrown; I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.