An Afternoon Seduction with the Mild-Mannered Mbombay Cigars - the Kesara Nikka Lancero

I usually go for that stick that catches my eye because of the sleek, dark lusciousness that stands out from the crowd. Those dark wrappers draw me in quickly ...

So I was really surprised when I first saw Mbombay Cigars and was attracted to the light supple wrapper on the Kesara Nikka Lancero. Beautifully decked out with a band admired by both men & women, it seemed like Mbombay designed it just for me. If ever a cigar band was designed with a woman & superb style in mind, the Mbombay cigars win hands down. The matte finish of the Light brown wrapper complimented the band perfectly and the cigar looked like jewelry that drew attention while I held Kesara in my hand. This cigar gave me what I was looking for ... an alternative to what I usually go for ... mild & flavorful in one stick.
The one cigar I smoked for this review was gifted by Bombay Tobak and featured an Ecuadorian Wrapper with Dominican Binder & Dominican and Peruvian Filler.


As I sat outside enjoying the welcome heat of the afternoon sun,  Kesara's matte light brown wrapper with a delicate pigtail cap felt light in my hand. A slight earthy scent can be detected from the wrapper. A delicate and striking, I settled into my porch chair with a glass of filtered water and continued to admire this striking beauty. As I put Kesara to my lips, the cold draw produced a light tobacco taste with some delicate spice.


As I lit  Kesara, an enticing aromatic cedar and cinnamon spice welcomes me as I savor the smoke in my mouth and sit enjoying the moment. The draw is a bit snug, the burn is fantastic with a mild profile and killer scent. Even in the light wind, the ash holds on thru the entire 1st Third.

While smoking Kesara into the 2nd Third, the profile moves from mild to medium with a delicate roasted nut that fades in and out with cedar flavors adding an unexpected but distinct flavor in my mouth. In the latter part of this Third the cinnamon transitions to cardamom, with notes of leather & cream. The draw opens up a bit more and as Kesara kisses my lips, a slight honey sweetness adds another level of enticement.
Is Kesara trying to seduce me ? I'm thoroughly intrigued.  As Kesara caresses my senses my mind begins to wander.  Have I found that light playfulness in a cigar luvr that I've been looking for ...

Even Rodney The Pug wants some Kesara Nikka !

The Final Third brings back the roasted nut flavors again with leather, orange peel with a mild spice. The Kesara cigar is a delicious smoke with a fantastic band designed to attract new smokers. As I'm enjoying the aromas and flavors in Kesara, I really don't want this experience to end.  While the Lancero size is not my go-to, I thoroughly enjoyed this cigar.  I'd love to find similar flavors in a larger ring gauge by Mbombay.


Overall I really enjoyed smoking the Kesara Nikka and look forward to another interlude in the near future. I heartily would recommend this to people who enjoy a milder but flavorful cigar perfect for morning & afternoon  delights.

All about Mbombay Cigars: 

 Wishing you long ashes --

Robusto Cigar Babe




Rolling Around in the Barn with Norteno

Is it ridiculous to try a cigar JUST because you got turned on by the guy holding it? Yes, I have to admit, I have a little teeny tiny crush on Willy Herrera. I don't even recall if Willy was holding the Norteno cigar when I saw the ad in Cigar Aficionada magazine, but in my mind, one late Monday evening, he was speaking directly to me ... "come on Robusto Cigar Babe ... try my luscious Norteno cigar ... you know you want a taste ... "

So, I ran to 4 of my local B & M shops to buy Drew Estate's Norteno, but no one had it. I searched online and bought a few. Then added the cigar to the #SundayCigarHerf lineup and waited patiently for that Sunday to come. Yes, I snuck back into my humidor to look at Nortena seeing only Willy's face on the band. I marveled over the sleekness, matte chocolate color and smooth look to my new hunny. I even ignored my fellow SundayCigarHerfer's private comments to me saying, "Uhhh I don't think you are going to like Norteno" or "I don't think he's gonna be right for you."  I just knew me and Willy ... uh, I mean, Norteno were going to be fast and furious lovers.

Well, we started out just as I imagined. Norteno in hand. The look of tiny veins, powered cocoa finish. My hands sweating a little as I admired his band, drawn in by the national bird of Nicaragua.  The pre-lit scent was earthy like being in the fields after a storm with a strong pepper and lots of wood. In the background, just underneath the earth was a slight sweet aroma that drew my palate in briefly, like a gentle kiss to my senses.
Upon lighting, the first few puffs yield strong earth and a mixture of white and black pepper that tickles my nose, but makes sense from the pre lit scents. Each puff in the 1st Third yields stronger pepper, wood, earth and a touch of sweetness that I can only define as hay. On one hand, I'm fulfilling a fantasy of "rolling in the barn" with Willy, but on the other hand, it's not the kinda profile I usually enjoy from my cigar luvrs. I'm beginning to rethink my date with Norteno.
The 2nd Third to midway the pepper ramps up and a very slight raisin emerges. Not enough to make this more enjoyable, and the woodiness increases to a point I'm not enjoying the date anymore. The profile moves up a sharp notch to full and that feeling comes over me quite suddenly, I have to make this date end. I start looking at my phone looking for an excuse to leave, with love fading quickly, I just can't go on. The Black pepper is just too prominent for me and the earthiness doesn't provide the balance I was looking for when I first became intrigued with Norteno.
The Snub: Sometimes these things happen. You meet a tall dark hunny on the pages of a magazine and you think, "ahhh yes, he could be the one." After getting acquainted, settling in and getting ready to relax in each other's gaze, it all fell apart after the first 20 minutes. You see, I like a little more dimension in my cigar luvrs -- more than a three note cigar -- and while people tell me he was "all that" for them, I just couldn't continue with Norteno.
Of course, if Willy wants to smoke the Norteno with me, describe to me his love for the ummm cigar, well I'd be absolutely more than happy to go another round with this attractive cigar ... but I may need a little coaxing from the man himself ...
Wishing you long ashes ...
Robusto Cigar Babe


Robusto Cigar Babe's Top Cigars of 2014

When I think about what the top cigars of 2014 were for me, I have to consider the sticks I gravitated towards over and over again. I call those my "cigar luvrs" and on Twitter or Instagram you will see me refer to them as DELISH !

I do believe Cigar Aficionado magazine got one thing right -- making an Oliva Cigar their top pick. It's a sumptuously delicious line of cigars. The Serie V's are my FAVS, but I wouldn't have picked the Oliva Serie V Melanio as the #1 cigar of 2014. My heart will always go to the Oliva Series V Melanio Maduro. To me, it's pure pleasure and undeniable love.

Ok, so here's the hard part. My favorite part of smoking cigars is trying all the different ones out there. I love trying new boutique brands. I enjoy the legacy brands. To me, enjoying a new cigar every time I want to smoke is the whole reason for smoking. As a good friend and cigar mentor always says, " you gotta try them all !" And @cigarchairman is right. You do. But, when I'm looking for relaxation, comfort, pampering ... I go back to my cigar luvs that drive me crazy and make me want them ... well, all the more ...

Instead of trying to delineate numbers to my Cigar Luvrs, here were my go-to cigars for 2014. Which ones are your faves:

Oliva Serie V Melanio Maduro
Oliva Serie V Robusto
Jose Blanco Senorial
Nat Sherman Sterling
Drew Estate Nica Rustica
Drew Estate Liga Privada No 9
AKA Hybrid
House of Emilio AF2
1502 Ruby
Oro Cubano Lounge in Vineland NJ  Hand Rolled Maduro
Casa Fernandez Aganorsa Leaf Maduro

My extended list of side luvrs:

Nat Sherman Epoca
Bodega Premium Blends Digestivo
La Jugada Prieto
LFD Double Ligero
LFD Ligero
Gurkha Ghost

Seriously I could go on and on ...

What I'd like to point out is that I can usually find something I love in almost every cigar I smoke. What I enjoy is the hunt, the connection, the attraction, the afternoon love ... and of course the midnight surrender. It's those relationships with the cigars in my life. Can you feel my passion?

The year is young ... go out and find the cigar luvs of your life for 2015 ... then go brag on Twitter and tag me.

Wishing You Long Ashes my Friends ...

Robusto Cigar Babe