Team Cigar Review: Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto

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Cigar Details: Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto

  • Vitola: Robusto
  • Length: 5″
  • Ring Gauge: 52
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
  • Binder: Brazilian Arapiraca
  • Filler: Nicaraguan Habano
  • Factory: Tabacalera AJ Fernandez
  • Blender: AJ Fernandez
  • Price: $8.49
  • Release Date: June 2019
  • Source: Diesel

Aaron-Loomis

 Aaron Loomis

Seth Geise

 Seth Geise

 John McTavish

Jiunn-Liu

 Jiunn Liu

Pre-light Experience

The Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto has a wrapper that is dark brown with a fine grit sand paper feel to it. The network of veins that are visible are all well pressed. The seams are easily visible as they are slightly raised while the head is finished off with a wrinkled double cap. There are two bands with the primary being the same design as the initial release but the primary color on this line is a deep burgundy. The foot band is primarily a cream color and designates that this is the Sherry Cask version and identifies Rabbit Hole. The aroma from the wrapper is a syrupy sweetness and light damp wood. The foot brings a mix of wood and bread. The pre-light draw brings toasted oak.

Pre-light Experience

Incredibly dark wrapper with small sized veins on the Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto. Gritty and firm in texture. Truly a solid Maduro, maybe even Oscuro. Aromas on the wrapper of rich earth, manure, chocolate and oak. Foot showing notes of sweet stone fruits, strong spices and rich earth.

Pre-light Experience

The Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto has a primary band and a footband. The style of both includes dark plum red writing on a light tan background, with metallic gold accents. The footband designates the cigar as Rabbit Hole PX Sherry Cask. Nosing the cigar reveals aromas of leather, oak and earthy tones. In the foot, a surprising amount of stewed fruit, sweetness and hay.

Pre-light Experience

The Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto has a Colorado Maduro wrapper shade with good, slick oil content. Veins are well pressed, seams tight, bunch and roll even and head finished off with a deep wrapped cap. Nosing the wrapper gives minerals, cedar and sharp baking spices. Aromas from the foot tell mulled wine, ripened sweet cherries and a hint of black pepper spice. Cold draw tells notes very similar to the foot aromas (mulled wine, ripened sweet cherries, cedar).

First Third

The cigar begins with slightly charred oak and a faint creaminess. Through the first three quarters of an inch, there are hints of sherry on random draws, but it maintains the charred oak and mild creaminess for the most part. The retrohale provides a toasted oak note. As the third comes to a close, not much has changed other than the char slightly increasing. The strength in this third was right at medium.

First Third

The first third starts out with some rich earth, strong oak, chocolate and and tobacco notes. There are some noticeable spices present as well, and they are of pepper, cinnamon and anise. I would classify the cigar as being between medium-full and full.

First Third

My first few puffs bring flavors of muted sweetness, finishing with light plus leather that coats my palate aggressively. On the retrohale, I’m getting a more pleasant combination of mild cream and baking spices, with a dry wood that finishes with mild tannins on the post draw. A fruity sweetness develops on the retrohale albeit very subtle in strength. Earth tones join the already full post draw. At the midway point, leather has faded on the post draw as cedar takes over.

First Third

The first third has a really great oily and effervescent mouthfeel. The flavors themselves are more subtle than anything, with notes of sweet cherries, hint of fortified wine, cedar, minerals and bread. Retrohaling has more bread, cedar and minerals. The finish is namely a long and lingering soft cedar. Strength and body is medium.

Second Third

As the second third begins, the creaminess has morphed into a mustiness. The charred oak continues to carry the profile along with the following mustiness. I get hints of sweetness at times. The retrohale maintains the toasted oak note. The strength in this third remained at medium.

Second Third

The second third delivers some cinnamon, Asian-spices, anise, chocolate and rich earth with some strong oak flavors like before. It is filling and rich, showing the strong tobacco notes and the sherry and oak qualities.

Second Third

No detectable profile changes going into the second third. As the cigar settles in, the tannins on the post draw step up significantly and begin to bleed into the mid palate. There is mild sweetness on the retrohale, finishing with cedar on the post draw and the intense tannins. Those tannins evolve to include a toasted character and earth.

Second Third

Surprisingly, the second third loses out on a lot of complexities. Namely, the sweet cherries and fortified wine notes are gone. Now it’s mainly cedar, minerals, baking spices and bread providing the same oily effervescent mouthfeel. Strength and body is still medium.

Final Third

As the final third begins, the char has increased a bit more and a slight bitterness joins the profile. The profile is also becoming a bit dry. At a quarter inch in, the mustiness has increased to become even with the charred oak while the faint bitterness is still present in the background. The retrohale still has the toasted oak going on but a bit of char is creeping in. The strength in this third bumped up to slightly below medium.

Final Third

The final third showed a decline from the first and second third and I picked up some spices, rich earth, dry wood and mineral qualities. I wouldn’t classify it as a terrible finish, but a disappointment when you look at what the cigar offered initially. Like before, the cigar was between medium-full and full in body and strength.

Final Third

The post draw takes on an acrid earth character and begins to seep into the mid palate profile almost immediately. The primary profile regresses to a dry cedar.

Final Third

The cigar continues to deteriorate. At this point, a metallic note creeps through. This, mixed with the effervescent quality create a bit of an unpleasant combination. Strength and body finishes medium.

Burn

The burn line was slightly jagged the whole way but never needed any attention. The ash held on through each third.

Burn

Constructed perfectly. Beautiful burn line with a lovely whitish gray ash that held on firmly from start to finish.

Burn

The burn is very straight through the entire smoking experience. Ash holds on in 1/4 inch increments before falling off on its own.

Burn

Perfect burn performance. Cool burning temperature, even burn, tight ashes.

Draw

The draw was slightly tighter than I prefer but didn’t cause any issues with the smoking experience.

Overall

The flavor profile was pretty linear as it just consisted of charred oak and light cream that transitioned to mustiness. The char increased as the cigar went along as some bitterness joined in during the final third. The oak is likely all that came from the barrel aging and to me, the Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto was a lesser cigar to the original Whiskey Row release. In my opinion, barrel aging tobacco should bring some uniqueness to the smoking experience, and that wasn’t achieved here. I don’t see any reason to revisit this cigar.

Draw

Like the burn, the draw was fantastic. Smoked perfectly from beginning to end and delivered a lot of smoke.

Overall

When I smoke a Diesel, I expect a strong and filling cigar. It has to be rich with a lot of spices, sweetness and a noticeable strength and body as well. That is what you got when you smoked the original Diesel Unholy Cocktail, and that is what you get with the Whiskey Row Sherry Cask. It shows tons of sweetness and spice. You are getting those noticeable oaky flavors along with those sweet Sherry flavors. In terms of the tobacco, you can really taste the tobaccos in the blend. I could pick up the Nicaraguan fillers, Brazilian binder and Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. The final third was not there yet, I think some time will help that out, and I would also keep these in a normal to higher RH environment. The Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto is enjoyable on it’s own, but I think it was meant to be smoked with some bourbon.

Draw

Draw is roughly a 1/2 notch at most towards the resistant spectrum, but well within the measurement of ideal.

Overall

The Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto was a release I was looking forward to. As a scotch enthusiast, Pedro Ximenez sherry tends to be one of my favorite cask influences on whisky. Unfortunately, the Diesel Whiskey Row lacks body, complexity and comes across as uninspiring to my palate. The PX infusion is an interesting concept but other than some foot aroma it never seemed to materialize in the flavor profile.

Draw

The draw was also perfect.

Overall

Unfortunately, this was the type of cigar in which high hopes were had based off the pre-light experience, but based off the smoking experience, it was essentially a let down. It’s really unfortunate the smoking experience couldn’t fully bring the greatness of sherry casks (stewed, jammed, ripe fruits) into light. The first third had some of that, but as the cigar burned through, it was less and less, ultimately not showing any ID of sherry casks. I would love to smoke the Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto with greater sherry cask influence.

Aaron
Seth
John
Jiunn
GoodPre
Light
Very GoodPre
Light
Very GoodPre
Light
Very Good
AverageFirst
Third
GoodFirst
Third
AverageFirst
Third
Good
AverageSecond
Third
GoodSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
Average
SubparFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
SubparFinal
Third
Subpar
Very GoodBurnAmazingBurnAmazingBurnAmazing
Very GoodDrawAmazingDrawAmazingDrawAmazing
AverageOverallGoodOverallAverageOverallAverage

Aaron Loomis

SCORE

5.15

Cost/Point

$1.65

Scoring System

Seth Geise

SCORE

6.82

Cost/Point

$1.25

Scoring System

John McTavish

SCORE

5.40

Cost/Point

$1.57

Scoring System

Jiunn Liu

SCORE

5.75

Cost/Point

$1.48

Scoring System

Team Cigar Review: Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto
Seth GeiseTeam Cigar Review: Diesel Whiskey Row Sherry Cask Robusto

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