Sunday, February 20, 2011

Rocky Patel "Decade" 10th anniversary

10 years in the business of making fine cigars... for some families that's a drop in the bucket, but everyone started somewhere. Rocky Patel started with a vision of uncompromising quality in 1993, and many industry people thought (or possibly wished) that he wouldn't make it to the 10-year mark.

     Fortunately for us, the consumers, they were wrong. Not only has Rocky Patel managed to continue making cigars in the manner they wanted, but they've broken some records for quality and created a loyal following around the world. I read on their website that Rocky visited over 600 cities in 750 days... madly passionate about his business? Either that or he's dying to reach a new level of frequent-flyer-miles.

     So there he is, Rocky has reached the decade mark in his business: does he rest on his laurels and enjoy some well-deserved rest? Why no sir-ee, he creates a celebratory brand, Decade 10th Anniversary, which proceeds to peak at a new high for quality scoring by of 95 points for the Torpedo. 95 points is one of the highest ratings for any cigar. Ever.
     I love a good cigar as much as any man, more then some I suppose, and yet I can't help but be filled with a touch of dread now. What can Rocky Patel possibly do for an encore at 20 years? I'm just joking of course, we all know that even now - Rocky is working through the night somewhere trying to figure out how to earn one more point... one more loyal follower on his quest for relentless quality. One more loyal customer.

     And that, dear friends, is how great businesses are made.

Rocky Patel "Decade" 10th Anniversary
$10 USD, $35+ CAD   **BUY THIS NOW**
Torpedo: 6.5*52
wrapper:   Sumatra
filler:         secret
binder:      secret
  • visual:   smooth and sleek; a very tight roll with no imperfections, slightly glossy, burned evenly right down to the last 1" with a thick white ash that held firm
  • nose:   moderate+ to fully intense and developed; rich dark coffee, dark cocoa, cedar notes, black pepper came in strong again at the half-way point but was creamy and balanced. Very similar notes to the Velvet Edition, just more developed and better balance
  • palate:   almost exactly the same as the nose, with the addition of a slight jalapeno spiciness in addition to black peppercorn; I would add that there was never a "hot" sensation - brilliant balance and construction
  • conclusion:   Brilliant value for the money, this is without a doubt one of the best cigars I've ever smoked. I will smoke this again, and share with only the best of my friends
  • PAIRING:   Madiera... an excellent fortified wine coming from Portugal, or Marsala coming from Sicily. Rich nuanced dried fruit flavors will play off the coffee notes, the extended sugar will balance the black peppercorn and slight jalapeno on the palate. Both also run about 20% ABV and will not aggravate the spicy qualities as a 40% spirit most definitely will (and possibly throw it out of balance)

     Rocky Patel. A man and a company with vision. My only serious question is succession: all great companies are designed so that if the leader steps down, the quality will stay the same. Who is being groomed at Rocky Patel so that Rocky can start to enjoy his well-earned rewards?
Rocky Patel enjoying life

     As always, I welcome your comments.

CINCIN~!!!     SLAINTE~!!!     CHEERS~!!!

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