Gurkha 125th Anniversary Edition
Review & Rating | 12 February 2013 | Posted
by Jeandrť Hartman of Cigar Affection
week saw the release of the legendary Gurkha brand of cigars in
South Africa. There are quite a few legends and great stories
about the Gurkha brand which I will share with you in this review
first Gurkha cigar up for review is the Gurkha 125th Anniversary Edition
1887, at the height of the British rule, colonial soldiers began
to make their own cigars from the local tobacco. The fondness of
the British for these legendary Nepalese fighters inspired them to
name their cigars "Gurkhas".
in legend and history, the Gurkha cigars, created more than a
century ago has been reborn and today is one of the most famous
brands of luxury cigars in the world. Having extraordinary quality
and premium blends of tobacco, Gurkha is known for limited release
and rare tobacco products with outstanding and
is also known as the 'Rolls Royce' of cigars and is enjoyed by
many of the world's elite including members of Royalty, Military,
leading government officials, and celebrities.
is a name that is deeply rooted in world history. The Gurkha
people comes from Nepal as well as Northern India. Their name is
taken from a heroic warrior saint, Guru Gorakhnath. As legend has
it the founder, Bappa Rawal, of the state of Mewar (which is now
the modern day city or Rajastan in India) went on a jungle hunting
expedition when he unintentionally came across Gorakhnath. The
story continues that when Gorakhnath awoke he gave Bappa Rawal the
famous Kukri knife, which is still used up until today by the
Gurkha people. It may often be referred to as the Gurkha
Rawal then went ahead and conquered Afghanistan as well as a part
of the Middle East to stop the Muslims advancing.
the early part of the 1800ís the Gurkhas also waged a war against
the British East India Company. This war is generally referred to
by historians as the Gurkha war. The story then goes on about how
impressed the British were with the courage and bravery of the
Gurkhas and Nepalís freedom was granted. The British would later
also hire Gurkhas as mercenaries for their future conquests. It
has been noted that the British held such high regard for the
Gurkhas that they werenít referred to as mercenaries anymore but
as real soldiers of the British Army called the Brigade of
Hansotia went on a trip to Goa, India in the late 1980ís where
he discovered a cigar that was referred to by the locals as
Gurkha. He bought the entire brand for about R1,350.00 and he
had the idea to give the cigars away as corporate gifts.
1995 he and Miami Cigar Company agreed to a deal to bring Gurkha
cigars to America and sales went nowhere.
Hansotia then shifted his focus to the presentation and packaging
of the cigars and suddenly there was interest.
went to the new level of ultra premium cigars as well as premium
blends that forced reverence upon itís onlookers with regards to
the Gurkha cigar. In no time at all Gurkha cigars was referred to
as the Rolls Royce of cigars from the Dominican Republic.
Furthermore it is a known fact that Gurkha cigars holds the title
for the most expensive cigars in the world with their ultra
premium "His Majestyís Reserve" line of cigars. This
cigar was a blend of 18-year-old tobacco infused with the rare cognac,
Louis XIII de Rťmy Martin and retails in the region of R6,750.00
a piece or R135,000.00 per box of 20 (duties and VAT excluded).
there was also the original limited edition Black Dragon line -
not to be confused with the current available Black Dragon line of
cigars. This little black beauty would cost you well over
R10,000.00 (duties and VAT excluded).
early 2012 Beach Cigar Group the company behind Gurkha and Wicked
Indie Cigars totally renamed itself to Gurkha Cigar Group Inc.
The company decided to emphasize the link to the then
125-year-old Gurkha brand.
released the 125th Anniversary Edition at IPCPR in
2012. It sells in quantities of 20 in a beautiful and specially
designed brass and handcrafted wooden box made from the finest
mango wood. You
will however be able to buy them individually at cigar stores.
There are 4 vitolas in this line - Robusto 5x52 /
Rothchild 6x54 / XO 6x60 and for this review I have the privilege
to enjoy the torpedo of 165mm (6.5Ē) with a ring gauge of 54.
This is a monster of a cigar and is reminiscent of the Montecristo
cigar features a Cubra Habano wrapper, Ecuadorian Habano binder
and a complex filler blend of 3 tobaccos from the Dominican
Republic, Nicaragua and Brazil. Gurkha is known for its complex
and very interesting blends.
overall construction of the cigar is immaculate. The pre-light
smell is peppery and chocolaty sweet. This cigar aims to impress and I believe it will
just do that.
to light her up...
consolatory flavour of wood, tobacco, spice, pepper and earth
fills your mouth and nostrils when you take your first draw.
The draw is comforting and slightly firm but nowhere
near difficult. Just the way I like it. Due to the thick gauge of
54 it is also a very cool smoke.
There is an immediate rich smoothness and depth and the
slightly complex flavour of this cigar begins to sparkle and fill
your mouth with tastes that are unexpected but very pleasant and
really well balanced.
the first few draws a plethora of flavours starts to emerge. I
taste wood and some herbaceous hints are also present with a
slight sparkle of dark coffee and bitter chocolate. I sometimes
experience the taste of caramel as well. This cigar is really
delicious and produces scads of lovely thick smoke. All this while
I am listening to some soft Cuban-like cigar bar music. I am
totally euphoric at this point in time.
far the strength is not overbearing and it is safe to say that
this cigar is dead centre medium bodied. The burn line is as near to perfect as I have ever seen on
any cigar and the ash is a charcoalish colour that holds very
into the second third I can feel that the strength is intensifying
slightly and the taste profile is shifting more towards the dark
coffee and bitter chocolate I mentioned earlier. I however must
note that the cigar does not taste bitter per se, but you can
definitely sense the cocoa in the back of your mouth. Dare I say
that I am now sensing more of a fuller body compared to the first
third? There surely is a change.
slightly soft peppery and slightly sweet ginger spice as well as a
hint of nutmeg also starts to emerge. The smoke feels and even
tastes richer and creamier than before. It is almost as if this is
the part that Gurkha really wants you to experience. Huge amounts
of smoke after each draw is still present.
into the final third I again sense slight herbaceous and earthy
tastes with the draw and that dark coffee and bitter chocolate
with a hint of caramel on the finish. My mouth actually starts
watering so good is the taste of this cigar. I have never tasted
anything like this before. The cigar takes you into a zone where
you donít want to be let out of. It makes you crave more and
calms you down whilst putting you on a slight peaceful high.
I smoke the cigar until there is about 5cmís left and
then placed it down to gracefully go out on itís own after 80
minute of sublime enjoyment.
will gladly smoke another one immediately but that may just ruin
the euphoria I am currently experiencing on this cool summers
evening on my patio with the soft gentle music in the background
and no one around.
there is not much to find wrong with this cigar. The quality of construction
is very good and the overall satisfaction is worthy of adoration. While smoking this Gurkha cigar I was ensnared with many
tobacco used in this cigar is first class, the blend is impeccable
and the cigar is simply delicious. Most South Africans cigar
smokers will not be familiar with Gurkha since they were only
recently launched here but donít be afraid to try one of these
supreme pieces. I will admit that this may not be the ideal cigar
for a beginner, but for someone who appreciates complexity and
richness you canít and will not go wrong trying one (or a couple)
of these fine cigars.
am in awe and I am fully aware that this review may read like and
advertisement for Gurkha but I canít rephrase any part more
done Gurkha and congratulations on your 125th
Anniversary Edition masterpiece.
125th Anniversary Edition
of origin: Dominican
Republic, Nicaragua & Brazil
/ 6.5 Inches
take note that you will not find these cigars online. Gurkha is
supplying these cigars only to retail. So take a trip to your
favourite cigar store and buy it there.
Cigars are reviewed on appearance (20 points), quality of construction (20 points),
flavour/taste (30 points) and an overall satisfaction rating (30 points).
Total points: 100 Maximum.
& Rating by Jeandrť
Please email your comments
Where can I buy this cigar? Regards Chris.
Affection: Hi Chris. I know that The Baron in Menlyn Park
shopping centre does have stock. You can contact them on 012 368
1068. Remember to tell them you found them here!
Hi there Cigar Affection. Thanks for this great review. I will
try one of these in the near future. Kindest regards, Dan.
Affection: Hi Dan. Thank you for taking the time to show your
appreciation for the review. Please let us know what you think of
the cigar when you get yours!
You are right! It does sound like and advertisement! haha!
Good review. Thanks mate. Jeff.
Affection: Hi Jeff. It was really that good! :-)
Will try it for sure. Marco.
Affection: Hi Marco. You won't be disappointed!
End of comments ~