HBTC Review: Protocol Bass Reeves Maduro

In 2019, Protocol Cigars debuted the Lawman Series of cigars with the Sir Robert Peel. Following that in 2020, the Eliot Ness cigars were announced. Then at the 2021 PCA Trade Show, Juan Cancel and Kevin Keithan from Protocol Cigars announced the latest entry in the Lawman Series, that being the Bass Reeves. As with all the cigars in the series, the Bass Reeves is available in either a Natural or Maduro wrapper. Bass Reeves is widely regarded as the first black Deputy U.S. Marshal west of the Mississippi. He was born to slave parents and rose to the U.S. Marshals Service, also regarded as a great Frontier hero in the United States. Here is Matt’s review of the Bass Reeves Maduro.

As of the publishing date of this review, the Bass Reeves Maduro is only available in this size.

Protocol Bass Reeves Maduro
MSRP: $11.95
Size: 6 x 52
Origin: La Zona (Nicaragua)
Wrapper: Habano (Nicaragua)
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua

The wrapper leaf on this cigar looks like a bar of dark chocolate. The color is very even and the overall appearance is very nice. There is very little tooth for a wrapper of this dark coloration, but the surface of the wrapper does have a bit of a texture to it. Aromas from the wrapper are some cedar and earth, while the foot has aromas of pepper and molasses.

Act I
In the very beginning, black pepper is the predominant flavor note, but that mellows rather quickly. Within the first few minutes there is a mixture of dark cocoa and some kind of dried fruit sweetness. It almost reminds me of dates or figs, but that is well balanced by some spice in the background. The retrohale is spicy and a bit bright, almost with a slight hint of citrus.

Act II
As the cigar continues to warm up there are notes of dark coffee and an almost tannic note, similar to a dryness from a glass of Cabernet. There is contrast from the fruit sweetness that seems to have morphed into an aroma that reminds me of raisin toast. All of this, with a slow hum of spice in the back of the palate. Through the nose, the retrohale is bold and a little bit sweet.

When the burn line gets to the band, the spice level intensifies. Now it is a front of the palate spice, almost like a cayenne pepper. The sides and back of the palate have some cocoa and toasted wood notes. I also get an almost salty/meaty characteristic at the very end. The retrohale closes out with plenty of spice, and an aroma that is slightly leathery.

This cigar definitely kept me on my toes with each one that I smoked. I found the blend to be consistent each time, and relatively complex throughout. There was a nice balance of spicy and sweet, without ever going over the top on either end. The only problem with each, albeit a slight one, was the wrapper seemed a bit too delicate and frayed on me if I didn’t smoke slowly. Either way, this is a nice blend that I enjoyed very much, and it may take the top spot for me in the Lawman Series.

Protocol Bass Reeves Maduro– How Bout That Cigar?
Rating: How Bout a Box?
Overall Score: 91
PAD: +0.0 (What is PAD?)
Flavor Summary: Dark Cocoa, Varied Pepper Spice, Dark Dried Fruits, Citrus, Charred Wood
Strength Assessment: Medium-Full
Source: Cigars for this review were provided by Protocol Cigars

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