When new cigar lines are introduced to the market, I’m not just curious to see what sizes are being included, but what sizes aren’t. Sometimes it’s a size not readily made by the factory producing the cigar, sometimes it’s an indication of a vitola that has fallen out of favor in the market, and other times the blend simply doesn’t perform as well in a certain combination of length and ring gauge.
Whatever the case, one of the more classic vitolas that was not included in the My Father core line was a Churchill, at least not until August 2015 when it began appearing at Thompson Cigar in Tampa, Fla.
The cigar isn’t the classic Cuban Churchill vitola, which measures 178mm (7.00787 inches) long with a 47 ring gauge; rather it’s a 7 x 50, essentially a toro with an extra inch tacked on the end. It complements an extensive list of sizes that range from the 7 1/2 x 38 No. 4 to the 6 x 60 Toro Gordo in the regular production line, with a number of store exclusive sizes having been added as well.
Here’s what I said about the My Father Churchill cigar when I reviewed it in Nov. 2015:
I can’t say I’ve ever complained that the My Father line was lacking a Churchill, both because the 6 x 49 No. 3 seems to fill that role fairly nicely and simply because it was never a thought that crossed my mind. As such, I can’t say that this 7 x 50 incarnation fills a gaping hole in the line, but I can say that it is as good as I can recall the blend being in any of the other sizes. It feels a bit softer at times, with the larger ring gauge seemingly easing how much pepper the cigar offers, which for my palate these days is a good thing. There’s a reason the My Father core line has become a staple in so many humidors, and the Churchill only reminds me why: a solid and balanced flavor, highlighted by good amounts of pepper, some sweetness and a very pleasing cedar-based aroma.
- Cigar Reviewed: My Father Churchill
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: My Father Cigars S.A.
- Wrapper: Ecuador (Habano Rosado)
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Length: 7 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 50
- Vitola: Churchill
- MSRP: $10.80 (Boxes of 10, $108)
- Release Date: August 2015
- Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Redux: 1
Say the words My Father and Churchill to a cigar smoker and this is almost exactly what I imagine comes to mind; a long, fairly beefy cigar sporting the traditional pink, white and gold band with the familiar MF logo. It’s a fairly firmly rolled cigar but there is some give to be found, and the cap looks well applied while the seams are flat and generally hard to pick out. There are a couple of decently sized veins on the wrapper but nothing distracting, with the color a slightly darker than medium shade of brown, almost cocoa-hued, and generally even save for a few spots. The foot of the cigar is incredibly light and fragrant, almost floral and trending into Champagne or light white wine territory. The cold draw is smooth and a bit more like Chardonnay, oaky and woody with a bit of pepper on the finish, but very subdued in intensity.
True to My Father form, there’s still some pepper to be found on the first puffs, and while it has definitely mellowed a bit, there’s no mistaking what has become the signature of a Pepín blend. By the time I’m about ten puffs in, it’s almost as if the cigar has taken a bit of offense to my prior sentence and decided to ramp up the pepper and show me just how much punch it still has. An early retrohale shows far more vigor than what the tongue gets, though I must say it isn’t as heavy with black pepper as I recall most of this blend offers. After a somewhat slow burn rate at the onset, the burn line is making fairly quick work of the first half of the cigar, with the flavors staying pepper-dominant but also balanced with some dry wood and white pepper through the nose and an interesting mix of creaminess and dry earth on the tongue. Once I knock the first clump of ash off at just over an inch in length, the cigar’s profile doesn’t change, but the pepper seems to have a bit more bite on the tongue now, really sinking into the taste buds while also giving the olfactory nerves in my nose a bit more zing as well. As the burn line progresses through the second third and approaches the midway point, there’s now more of a campfire aroma from the My Father Churchill, with some smoky wood and almost a bit of steakhouse kitchen in the mix as well from the abundant smoke that the cigar offers. Given the vibrancy of the first half of the My Father Churchill, I’m still having a hard time believing that this has been resting in my humidor for three years.
The second half of the My Father appears to want to explore the woodier parts of the profile, shedding much of the campfire smokiness from just a few moments ago in favor of the unburnt variety, and the results are quite good, if a bit less than fully engaging or attention-grabbing. Pepper fans fear not: there’s still a good amount to be found, though it has shifted to a more complementary role through the back end of the second third. It’s still there through the nose in ready abundance, with the familiar aroma of warm cake donuts entering the fray as well and helping the cigar take a step in a slightly new direction. The body of the cigar also has scaled back a bit, still north of medium but without the steady pepper from the first third pushing it into full-bodied territory. The cigar wraps up after just over two hours of smoking time without leaving much in the way of a nicotine kick and performing near flawlessly, with an even burn line, issue-free draw and plenty of smoke.
The My Father Churchill is a cigar I have passed over for a redux more times than I can count; whether it be the time needed to smoke it or simply that something flashier caught my eye, it sat in my humidor for some three years—an amount of time I was shocked to discover had elapsed when I finally pulled it out on a rare day off from baseball. Even with the rest, the cigar still has plenty of vibrancy and life, checking in only a tick or two mellower than an off-the-shelf version, and showing that it can still perform quite well after years of slumber. But more than anything I can say about the My Father Churchill, it reminds me what a solid blend this line is and why it has earned a spot in so many humidors.