The bumps you are referring to are known as teeth......the correct adjectives when describing a cigar with bumps would be "toothy".....and is not necessarily a bad thing when rating a cigar.
Review: Graycliff Double Espresso
I was reaching WAAAAAAAY back in the back of one of my Vinotemps, and came upon a bag of these from WhoKnowsVille. I don’t remember buying them, or trading for them, so perhaps CigarSanta™ brought them at some point in the past. Anyway, I have smoked a multitude of these over the years, but realized I have never done a review.
For those of you that don’t know…
There are not many cigar manufactures that reside in the Bahamas, but I can guarantee on of the most prominent is the Graycliff brand. The cigars for Graycliff are produced in their factory in Nassau, Bahamas, and they were originally blended by (the late) Cuban expatriate Avelino Lara, the creator of the original Cuban Cohiba, Trinidad and Davidoff blends. First came the Red Label, followed by the Blue Label (Profesionale), then the more full-bodied White Label (Crystal) and finally the Black Label (Espresso).
The Graycliff Double Espresso is made regularly in just one size, (4 1/2 x 54) and differs from the regular Espresso blend in that additional Ligero has been added to increase the blend’s body and flavor. It sports a Costa Rican wrapper, and the filler is a combination of Cuban-seed Corojo, Ecuadorian ligero, and Nicaraguan tobaccos. The MSRP on this cigar is insane (even by my standards!) coming in at Opusesqe $13 per stick. However, Graycliff’s dirty little (non) secret is that these (and their other blends) are FREQUENTLY featured in various Cigar Deal Sites (like CigarBid, for example, where a quick perusal shows that you could easily pick up a Mazo of 15 cigars of these cigars for under $100. (Graycliff is famous for making special sizes of blends for individual customers, the only regular size of the Double Espresso is the 4 1/2 x 54 size, offered exclusively at Cigars International).
- Cigar Reviewed: Graycliff Double Espresso
- Country of Origin: Bahamas
- Factory: Graycliff Cigar Factory
- Wrapper: Costa Rican
- Binder: Costa Rican
- Filler: Ecuadorian & Nicaraguan
- Size: 4 1/2
- Ring Gauge: 54
- Vitola: Double Robusto
- Est. Price: $13.00 (Mazos of 15, $175.00)
The Graycliff Double Espresso is a fairly ugly stick, with a roughish medium (coffee?) colored wrapper that has very little smell (perhaps some cedar) to it and no oil on it. The wrapper is quite bumpy along the entire length, and has quite a few veins showing as well. The cap is NOT pretty (you would think someone with Cuban roots could do better) and looks very sloppily executed.
The dominant flavor for the entire stick was (surprise!) coffee, with cedar, leather and a creamy note that was very pleasant. There was precious little spice or pepper (this is definitely a mild+ to medium- cigar) for the entire smoke. The flavors did not change much for the entire cigar, keeping a pretty solid creamy coffee flavor for the entire length of the smoke. It did get a bit hot at the end of the nub as well.
Unfortunately, the draw was VERY loose, the burn was erratic and the ash was extremely flaky, which, while a problem with Graycliff cigars in general, does not make it any more annoying. There was quite a bit of smoke coming from the stick (which I like), and it smell great, like (surprise!) coffee. The final smoking time was 1 hour and 30 minutes.
The Bottom Line: For a morning cigar, you could do quite a bit worse. I use this cigar as a VERY different change of pace smoke, one that I always have on hand in case I get the urge for the specific profile only this cigar can provide. It is a good smoke for what it is, but it is not overly complex, has almost no punch at all, and is basically a one note wonder. But if you like coffee notes in your cigars, FUGETABOUTIT! Nothing even comes close to this. Having said that, NEVER EVER EVER buy this cigar at full MSRP, as they can be picked up for quite a bit less all over the internet.
Final Score: 84