Late last year, it was announced that Drew Estate would be the manufacturer tasked with creating the 11th Smoke Inn Microblend Series cigar, earlier this month, Pope of Greenwich Village began shipping.

Drew Estate Pope of Greenwich Village 2

The cigar itself is a 6 x 40 petit lancero with a Mexican San Andrés wrapper, stalk-cut habano binder and Brazilian Mata Fina and Nicaraguan fillers. As with everything in the South Florida retailer’s series, it’s limited. This time to 1,500 packs of 10 with pricing set at $8.50.

Smoke Inn Microblend Series

Like a few other releases in the series before it, the cigar actually got a soft preview at a private dinner held on Feb. 20, 2015, the night before the retailer’s annual Great Smoke festival. Earlier this week, it was announced that the 12th release in the series would be a rerelease of the inaugural cigar in the series, the Tatuaje Anarchy.

Pope of Greenwich Village 1

  • Cigar Reviewed: Pope of Greenwich Village
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Factory: La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate
  • Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés
  • Binder: Habano
  • Filler: Brazil & Nicaragua
  • Size: 6 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 40
  • Vitola: Petit Lancero
  • MSRP: $8.50 (Packs of 10, $85)
  • Date Released: Feb. 20, 2015[ref]As noted above, the cigar began shipping nationwide on June 1.[/ref]
  • Number of Cigars Released: 1,500 Packs of 10 Cigars (15,000 Total Cigars)
  • Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 2

For a series that has been dominated by 54 and 56 ring gauge cigars, it’s nice to see the small ring gauges getting some love. The smaller red band contrasts well against the dark Mexican wrapper, which has an aroma of barnyard, leather and cocoa. The foot is far more interesting with a big sweet graham cracker flavor, caramel, touches of cocoa and a bit of leather. But that’s trumped by the cold draw, which has bitter cocoa, leather, some fruitiness, twang, leather and saltiness towards the end. The cold draw is noticeably open for the vitola, but nothing that raises concern.

The Pope of Greenwich Village begins with leather, cocoa, wet woods and freshly shaved nutmeg. There’s some underlying sweetness that turns the profile quite sweet, but it’s not attached to any particular flavor. Eventually it becomes apparent that the sweetness is coming from the cocoa flavor, but it’s a bit dry. In addition, there’s some cocoa and nuttiness on the tongue. The retrohale is ridiculously punishing, one of the more intense I’ve witnessed of late, with a really big green and black pepper mixture. That being said, if you take small retrohales the peppers become palatable and the finish is still sweet with nuttiness really emerging. The smoke production is the normal Drew Estate insanity, although the ash is incredibly flaky.

Pope of Greenwich Village 2

Everything mellows out a bit in the second third, there’s burnt lemon, nuttiness, leather, earth and a very sharp paprika. While it’s relatively smooth in the mouth, my throat is beginning to have some roughness emerge. The good news is, retrohales are now easily doable and it’s no longer a pepper parade with some of the lemon showing through the nose. Flavor is medium-full as is the strength now, but the body is medium plus. Construction remains much the same, with great smoke production and ash going everywhere.

Pope of Greenwich Village 3

Fortunately, the Pope of Greenwich Village smooths out in the final third. The sweetness returns as an underlying note, while there are upfront flavors of burnt toast, earthiness, leather, a sweeter citrus flavor and some pepper on the outside of the tongue. Just below two inches, the smoke production begins to warm, but it’s otherwise a relatively similar story construction-wise.

Pope of Greenwich Village 4

Final Notes

  • I lived in New York during summer 2012, I walked through Greenwich Village everyday on the way to work.
  • There was a book and later movie titled The Pope of Greenwich Village.
  • We don’t deduct points for the flakiness of the ash, but it would be applicable here. There was ash everywhere, which was an annoyance and led to me using the ashtray much more frequently than I normally do.
  • Last year, Drew Estate released the Undercrown Dogma as an exclusive for Smoke Inn. It was billed as a cigar for Cigar Dojo and not part of the Microblend Series.
  • Smoke Inn considers this the 10th release in the series, that’s because the Padrón was two cigars for one “release.”
  • At $8.50, the Pope of Greenwich Village is one of the more affordable new Drew Estate cigars in recent memory.
  • There’s not a regular line from Drew Estate that I would say Pope of Greenwich Village smokes like. A bit less sweetness compared to Undercrown, a bit more layered than Nica Rustica and lacking the fullness of Liga Privada T52.
  • Final smoking time was one hour and 40 minutes.
  • Cigars for this review were sent to halfwheel by Smoke Inn.
  • You can purchase the Pope of Greenwich Village from Smoke Inn here.
88 Overall Score

The Pope of Greenwich Village is a solid cigar that’s easy to smoke, so long as you don’t try to take large retrohales in the first inch or so. That being said, it’s neither the greatest cigar from Drew Estate, nor Smoke Inn’s Micro Blend Series. Its saving grace is no doubt the price, a 10-count release that comes in well under the $10 mark. Regular readers of this site know that price doesn’t factor into scores—so it remains just a solid cigar.

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.